Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Montréal (Québec)
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I cannot compare because I have no experience with single-wheel trailers, but I do have a lot with a 2-wheel child trailer which is likely to be replaced by a Nomad. There are a few points to consider:
– Wind resistance. The 2-children trailer is a real parachute, but the Nomad cargo space is only 18" wide x 15" high, vs 27" wide x 27" high for the 2-chidren trailer. As far as I remember, the Nomad cargo space is wider than the BOB, but it won't add more wind resistance than panniers.
– Overall Width. At 25" wide, the Burley Nomad is about as wide as what you need for cycling with or without panniers. So unless you weight 50-100 lb and are thin as a needle, the Nomad won't prevent you from going in places where you can ride your bike. Still, there are a few constraints:
- you can't do singletrack;
- if you need to ride with your wheel 2" off the ditch (not a good idea anyway), your trailer won't fit in;
- if you need to push your bike off the road on footpaths (ex.: for camping), the trailer may be a problem;
- if you ride in soft terrain (sand, thick mud, deep snow), you will be digging three tracks instead of one;
- if the roads you take are so bad that you really need to find a passable path for the bike, then finding a wide enough path may be more challenging.
The 2-wheel trailer tracks well, definitely well enough for any kind of highway and dirt road travelling. You need to plan your turns on singletrack or – sometimes – when riding through the kind of obstacle courses they call a "multi-use path".
Mind you, I have done singletrack with my single towing a trailercycle towing a child trailer, but I was riding slowly.
– Riding on uneven terrain
You need really big boulders to scrape the bottom of the trailer. Another hazard is turning where the road is sloped the wrong way.
All in all, I think it's a good choice. I haven't toured with the child trailer (just used it for shopping and lots of long day rides) and I am used to tour with panniers, but if/when I get a cargo trailer, I may decide to compare both systems to know which works best. Self-contained touring with two children means I have a really heavy bike!