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  1. #1
    Senior Member Sundance89's Avatar
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    Has anyone yet, or would anyone tour with a Burley Travoy?

    Even though the Travoy is marketed for commuting and errands, I think enough time has gone by where someone might have tried touring with it. I've owned a Burley Nomad for a few years now, and coupled with their cargo rack accessory, it makes for a fine trailer.

    But a huge part of touring for me is using local gyms to workout, shower, regroup etc., and the Nomad cannot fit into a normal gym locker. I usually have to ask if I can stash it in an office or closet somewhere. The Travoy would be perfect to quickly break down and fit into the average locker. As I said, I base my tours around the function of gyms when they are available, not only for working out, but for the respite they offer.

    I am curious to know how much wind resistance the tall configuration of the Travoy creates. By design, that one can't be avoided with the Travoy, but I want to know to what degree and if it is acceptable at all for longer trips. The other concerns would be the small wheel size and cargo capacity.


  2. #2
    Senior Member Thulsadoom's Avatar
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    You can't just carry a gym bag in the NOmad and leave it locked up with your bike out in front of the gym while you're working out?

  3. #3
    Senior Member Sundance89's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thulsadoom View Post
    You can't just carry a gym bag in the NOmad and leave it locked up with your bike out in front of the gym while you're working out?
    Would I be asking this question if so? I was very specific with my question and you hardly offer any experience with either having personally toured with a Burley Travoy or an opinion on if you would or would not. Still, I'll answer your response. . . No.

    I carry much more than a "gym bag" full of items while touring, otherwise ahh yes . . , I guess I would just take my gym bag in with me. The Nomad is filled to capacity. Additionally, the cargo rack carries the larger items like my sleeping pad and sleeping bag. So security is my concern (for the trailer as well). I might as well leave a sign to "please help yourself to the rest of my belongings" while I take your suggestion.

    I do organize my packing into separate duffle bags as much as I can, but still it would be cumbersome, to say the least, to unload and "carry" it all in the gym. Thus, the idea of just rolling the Travoy and then simply breaking it down to fit in a locker has its appeal. Perhaps your response was not meant as snarky as it appears. But again, my interest (and question) is in the "Travoy's" performance when used while touring.

  4. #4
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    I was looking at the Travoy the other day and also wondered about using it for touring. Quite frankly, I don't quite "get" the design of it, and why one would prefer it over a BOB or Nomad.

    For touring, I suppose you could pack all your stuff in a full-size backpack and strap it to the trailer. This would make it really easy to transport your gear off the bike/unload very quickly. Simply lock the trailer to the bike with a cable lock, unstrap the pack and throw it on your back, and off you go. Kind of a neat, multi-modal setup if you will (like containers on ships/trains)!

    Personally, I think I'd prefer the lower center of gravity of a regular Burley Nomad or a BOB, and you could still do the same backpack thing. Or, use the Burley Flatbed instead of a Nomad.

  5. #5
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    Would not, should not tour with a burley travois.

    bad weight distribution, plastic locking mechanisms in the frame knuckles.

    Try it for a weekend tour, sure, it's probably going to be okay.

    and certainly, you could tour with it. people used to tour on solid tire ordinaries. its not as if you can't use ill suited equipment for the job, if that's all one has.

    Would I use a burley travois for a tour? Absolutely not.

    What are you going to do with all the gear you're touring with? Schlepp that into the gym locker as well?

    To me, personally, it sounds like a lot of trouble. I'd just ask the gyms if they would let you park a loaded touring bike in some back space somewhere.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 01-20-11 at 08:29 AM.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Sundance89's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by briwasson View Post
    I was looking at the Travoy the other day and also wondered about using it for touring. Quite frankly, I don't quite "get" the design of it, and why one would prefer it over a BOB or Nomad.

    For touring, I suppose you could pack all your stuff in a full-size backpack and strap it to the trailer. This would make it really easy to transport your gear off the bike/unload very quickly. Simply lock the trailer to the bike with a cable lock, unstrap the pack and throw it on your back, and off you go. Kind of a neat, multi-modal setup if you will (like containers on ships/trains)!

    Personally, I think I'd prefer the lower center of gravity of a regular Burley Nomad or a BOB, and you could still do the same backpack thing. Or, use the Burley Flatbed instead of a Nomad.
    I agree with asking that question within myself. The Travoy would have to at least come close and offset the many positive aspects and relationship I already have with towing the Nomad. I absolutely love my Burley Nomad's performance for touring and low center of gravity. I just have one slight 'technical' challenge in the way I like to tour. I enjoy spending a few days hanging out in a town I like, particularly ocean towns, and I like to dump the trailer during the day while doing it. With that, I'm also a fitness freak and workout which gives me an opportunity to use fitness clubs as a secure day base until I set up camp again at night. (I would never leave my campsite set up at any campground and go hang out the whole day, so the Burley and belongings comes with.)

    I like to be stealth as I freely trip around town on just my bike. I can lock it secure with my heavy duty Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboutit lock and my Pinhead skewer locks add more confidence. The long cord that I use to lock my trailer to my Kryptonite is a decent thickness but does not inspire confidence and can be cut. The trailer would be a sitting duck if left alone too and if the Nomad was stolen, that would be almost as bad as the bike itself as far as the tour goes, as it would surely shut the tour down.

    Perhaps continuing to find a place for the Burley is the best way to go. I have sometimes wheeled the Nomad right it into the locker room and disassembled it to fit it into a locker. That's a bit of a pain, but I carry two locks and will use two lockers, 1 for the trailer, 1 for belongings.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Sundance89's Avatar
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    I should add that I travel with a Timbuk2 Messenger Pannier on my bike rack. This is my "lock up the bike, sling it over the shoulder and go bag" that I use when hanging out during the day in a town. That's my system. I drop the big cargo load at the gym and trip around stealth during the day, come back later and pick up the cargo, then set up camp at night again.

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    Caffeinated. Camel's Avatar
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    That trailer seems to be best suited for shorter trips (errands/shopping & such) IMO. Seems well thought out though.

    For the OP's intended purpose I would use an "Extrawheel" trailer-the older style with the mesh carry system.
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  9. #9
    djb
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    Id be concerned about the plastic wheel, bearings etc. If one of those failed while going along, it would be tricky. Im looking at this from experience using heavy duty dollies with plastic wheels--tough perhaps but not really made for constant rolling at high speeds, ditto my concerns with the "bearing" surfaces, as I suspect there are not bearings as such, and not being designed for all day rolling at speed with bumps, potholes etc, they might not take it after a while.

    just an observation

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    I plan to tour with the Travoy in the next few months.

    The Travoy makes perfect sense for what I want it for:
    I travel with a backpack so I travel relatively light. I want to be able to do hikes as I run into them along the way(The Travoy is under 10 Lbs so I can just strap this to my pack). I don't want to bother with a BOB or another bulky trailer. At some point I plan to ditch my bike and start travelling outside the states so I dont want to invest too much on equipment.

    With REI's warranty it is possible to return item for simply not liking them. If the wheels break and such you can also return the item.

    I plan on getting one in the coming week. Do a couple of weekend tours and see how it stacks up.

  11. #11
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    seems like a good way to tow your back pack and boots, go climb a peak,
    and ride home.

  12. #12
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    A resounding YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have toured, camped, shopped, etc., with my Burley Travoy and contrary to Bekologist (gotta love it when people give uninformed opinions), who is so totally wrong, it is a great system and highly recommended. I love the way it follows behind my bike and I have just returned from a camping trip over gravel roads, rough torn-up roads, paths, regular streets, etc., with 50# of gear in it and although I had to gear down 1-2 on steep hills, it was a breeze. Going down hills, also a breeze and what's really great about it, is whenever I stopped, all I had to do was lock up my bike and unhitch my Travoy and take it with me. I tore it down and packed it into it's accompanying bag and stowed it in my tent and all was great. I love it and ditched my panniers. There's also a fellow who did a 900+ KM tour in New Zealand with it (google that), who had NO PROBLEMS at all! So, don't listen to those who "think" they know what they're talking about - until they walk the walk, all they do is talk the talk. So, Bekologist - now what have you got to say for yourself? Blog: www.grandmacyclist.com/

  13. #13
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    my opinion wasn't 'uninformed' i don't own one but had inspected one and tried one out and saw one put thru the test at the bike shop i worked at.

    I've also put in some time as a field tester of outdoor equipment. And pretty realistic about how gear gets put thru the paces on a bike tour, I've been bike touring since the mid 1980's.

    When the Burley Travois was introduced at the bike shop i worked at and having tested it out and had it on loan being put thru the paces by the shop guys, found it to be fragile in construction, with suspect plastic clicking mechanisms, not built to withstand heavy duty use. also, the weight is distributed high away from the wheels, making the travois not the most stable.

    Glad you've got it to work so well for your needs, traceyge. it sounds like you used it on your first bike tour ever.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 05-27-12 at 08:37 AM.
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    Wouldn't buy one. The reason I have a trailer is to handle loads that I can't manage with panniers... and with panniers, I can haul in the 50-60lb range. The Travoy has a max weight of 70lbs, and volume constraints that are about the same as my panniers. And my pannier weight limit is not based on the actual max of my gear, but the max weight the engine can handle.

    The other issue with the Travoy vs Nomad is volume. A Nomad's cargo capacity is well in excess of 100L, particularly with the rack attachment. A Travoy's max volume is in the 40-60L range. If you're routinely travelling with on the order of 150L of gear as the stuffed to the gills Nomad and extra pannier indicate... it seems unlikely to me that you'd be able to get your gear volume down by the approximately 50% needed.

    I don't know for sure that I've loaded my trailer down with more than 100lbs, but it does routinely handle heavier loads than my panniers.

    Wouldn't tour with the trailer in most situations. All the tours I've done, I had no trouble packing into my 40L panniers. The main virtue I can see for the trailer is it might make it doable to do a family tour where my niece and nephew are in a kid trailer, and the gear is in another trailer, and 2 of the 4 adults are hauling basically no weight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sundance89 View Post
    Even though the Travoy is marketed for commuting and errands, I think enough time has gone by where someone might have tried touring with it. I've owned a Burley Nomad for a few years now, and coupled with their cargo rack accessory, it makes for a fine trailer.

    But a huge part of touring for me is using local gyms to workout, shower, regroup etc., and the Nomad cannot fit into a normal gym locker. I usually have to ask if I can stash it in an office or closet somewhere. The Travoy would be perfect to quickly break down and fit into the average locker. As I said, I base my tours around the function of gyms when they are available, not only for working out, but for the respite they offer.

    I am curious to know how much wind resistance the tall configuration of the Travoy creates. By design, that one can't be avoided with the Travoy, but I want to know to what degree and if it is acceptable at all for longer trips. The other concerns would be the small wheel size and cargo capacity.

    I own a Burley Travoy and had toured with it and so far, it is holding out very well. I also owned and toured with a BOB trailer, a Burley Nomad (like yours) and a Leggero Max (killed it because it was so fragile) and I find that the Travoy thus far is stable and does fit in a few gym lockers (one must be big and deep enough though).

    Wind resistance is a bit more than a Burley Nomad, but less than 4 panniers on the bike. However, I use the Travoy with my Dahon folding bike, so it actually rides LOWER than larger wheeled bikes and thus improves upon the aerodynamics of it in a way that it is no different than the Nomad. I sold the Nomad for this reason. The little wheels roll pretty well and seemed to be tough! Also, the Burley Travoy when folded with the wheels tucked in and in its supplied bag qualifies as a train and airline carry-on. The BOB and the Nomad do not and are subjected to appropriate surcharges. I have Burley's special bags (top and bottom) plus the rain cover so it is currently fully decked out. With the Travoy, I no longer need my panniers anymore so I'm looking to sell all of them. Capacity wise is perfect. My camping load is usually around 40lbs with loads of stuff and the Travoy can handle that. There is NO fish tailing effect like you get from the BOB trailer especially touring on extreme camber angled roads and I feel so much FREEDOM with my bike as opposed to when I toured with my BOB or with 4 panniers. The accessory bags will help organizing your stuff (tent, sleeping bag, Thermarest, cooking stuff, spare parts) easier and they aren't expensive if you catch them on specials at Amazon from time to time. Also, in its stand up position, it's like you have a walk-in closet with the upper and lower bags allowing easy access to your stuff as opposed to the dry bag system on the BOB and the Nomad when you have to bend your knees or lean down to get to. They do sell the dry bag accessory for the Travoy if you like this approach.

    But the key feature that sold me this trailer is the weight and the fold.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by pacificcyclist; 05-27-12 at 01:03 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    my opinion wasn't 'uninformed' i don't own one but had inspected one and tried one out and saw one put thru the test at the bike shop i worked at.

    I've also put in some time as a field tester of outdoor equipment. And pretty realistic about how gear gets put thru the paces on a bike tour, I've been bike touring since the mid 1980's.

    When the Burley Travois was introduced at the bike shop i worked at and having tested it out and had it on loan being put thru the paces by the shop guys, found it to be fragile in construction, with suspect plastic clicking mechanisms, not built to withstand heavy duty use. also, the weight is distributed high away from the wheels, making the travois not the most stable.

    Glad you've got it to work so well for your needs, traceyge. it sounds like you used it on your first bike tour ever.
    Bekologist, the original Travoy did have issues. The latest version of the Travoy solved these issues by making the plastic clicking mechanisms MORE robust. It's more difficult now to fold the stool and the base in without some effort and a few times I forced folding it thinking it would break, it did not. Secondly, I totally disagree with you about the Travoy being the most unstable being weight up high away from the wheel as I have toured with other big name trailers in the past for years too and I found the BOB is the one being the most unstable of the lot when loaded pretty top heavy. The Travoy is actually one of the most stable trailers being that it has 2 wheels. The only concern I have is the trailer tipping over to its side because of the height. However, I had never been able to do this at all unless I intentionally had one of the wheels hit a high curb on the sidewalk. Personally, I'm still evaluating the durability of this trailer, but so far it has performed beyond my expectation and the folding aspect is a plus for me. At least the Travoy beats the Leggero Max which was an expensive European experiment P.O.S!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torrilin View Post
    Wouldn't buy one. The reason I have a trailer is to handle loads that I can't manage with panniers... and with panniers, I can haul in the 50-60lb range. The Travoy has a max weight of 70lbs, and volume constraints that are about the same as my panniers. And my pannier weight limit is not based on the actual max of my gear, but the max weight the engine can handle.

    The other issue with the Travoy vs Nomad is volume. A Nomad's cargo capacity is well in excess of 100L, particularly with the rack attachment. A Travoy's max volume is in the 40-60L range. If you're routinely travelling with on the order of 150L of gear as the stuffed to the gills Nomad and extra pannier indicate... it seems unlikely to me that you'd be able to get your gear volume down by the approximately 50% needed.

    I don't know for sure that I've loaded my trailer down with more than 100lbs, but it does routinely handle heavier loads than my panniers.

    Wouldn't tour with the trailer in most situations. All the tours I've done, I had no trouble packing into my 40L panniers. The main virtue I can see for the trailer is it might make it doable to do a family tour where my niece and nephew are in a kid trailer, and the gear is in another trailer, and 2 of the 4 adults are hauling basically no weight.
    Unless you're on an expedition trip, do you really need to carry stuff up to your gills buddy? Sounds to me like you guys are brand new to cycle camping. Only newbies carry stuff up to the gills. Experienced cycle tourists actually pair down their weight, because you need to carry them up the hills and down. I met people who carry very little and I mean, I'm as light as I can be with my camping gear setup, but sometimes I met people who's even lighter and carry much less!

    The only time I would use a BOB or a Nomad is when I need to carry lots of water, food and stuff for a cross journey into no man's land which I had done in the past. But the US and Canada with roads not far from your next local grocery store means you really don't need to carry a lot of stuff either. Most families who are towing a trailer usually have panniers on, so the trailer is just an extension of their luggage needs. I wouldn't say the Travoy replaces the Nomad. It doesn't. I suspect that most people's needs in regards to cycle touring can be met with the Travoy. And not everyone in the United States of America owns a big house. A lot of people had downsized or kicked out no thanks to foreclosures, so having the Travoy being a folding trailer is a plus if people need a trailer but don't have the space for it.
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  18. #18
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    When I saw them I thought they were perfect for a long bike tour to a trailhead,
    then lock the bike and trailer up at the last accommodation,
    then head off into the backcountry wearing the Backpack..

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by pacificcyclist View Post
    Only newbies carry stuff up to the gills. Experienced cycle tourists actually pair down their weight, because you need to carry them up the hills and down.
    The thing is that folks carry what they feel they need. I was down below 15 pounds of gear and bags on my last tour (San Diego to Sarasota), but I met lots of very experienced tourists who prefer to carry as much as 80-100 pounds and occasionally someone who carries even more than that. Some of these folks have many tours under their belts and know what works for them. They just prefer to take all that stuff.

    I don't get it, but that doesn't matter. They don't get what I do either.

    Ultralight works very well for me. Ultra heavy works well for some.

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    Quote Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
    The thing is that folks carry what they feel they need. I was down below 15 pounds of gear and bags on my last tour (San Diego to Sarasota), but I met lots of very experienced tourists who prefer to carry as much as 80-100 pounds and occasionally someone who carries even more than that. Some of these folks have many tours under their belts and know what works for them. They just prefer to take all that stuff.

    I don't get it, but that doesn't matter. They don't get what I do either.

    Ultralight works very well for me. Ultra heavy works well for some.
    I think it's the same with the "stuff" we accumulate in our life time based on society's expectation and our own illusion of what makes us happy. I know a lot of my friends who own big nice houses, nice luxury cars (Mercedes Benz, Porsche etc) and have lots of money and somehow they are just not very happy. They need more or they want even more. I don't get it, but that doesn't matter. They need these stuff to fuel an illusion of their own happy lifestyle and that usually permeates onto what they do on tours. There are many experienced travelers who tour with lots of money and stay in expensive motels and get to see almost the same things as someone who tour with a cheap bike and stay in a tent and eat bread and soup every night.
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    Maybe the carry freedom cityis an alternative http://www.carryfreedom.com/city.html
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  22. #22
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    One Tour?

    I have done many tours with my Burley Travoy and have over 800 miles on it. I use it every day without fail through mud, rain, snow, ice, hot weather (what little we get here on the wet coast of BC) so I feel my review of it surpasses those who have never even used it.

    Tracey


    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    my opinion wasn't 'uninformed' i don't own one but had inspected one and tried one out and saw one put thru the test at the bike shop i worked at.

    I've also put in some time as a field tester of outdoor equipment. And pretty realistic about how gear gets put thru the paces on a bike tour, I've been bike touring since the mid 1980's.

    When the Burley Travois was introduced at the bike shop i worked at and having tested it out and had it on loan being put thru the paces by the shop guys, found it to be fragile in construction, with suspect plastic clicking mechanisms, not built to withstand heavy duty use. also, the weight is distributed high away from the wheels, making the travois not the most stable.

    Glad you've got it to work so well for your needs, traceyge. it sounds like you used it on your first bike tour ever.

  23. #23
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    Like who cares how much stuff you carry and what others carry? Aren't we all individuals? Aren't we all entitled to do what we want? Why do people like you have to insinuate your way is right and ours is wrong? If I want to bring my kitchen sink, why can't I? After all, it's my tour, it's my life - right? I don't judge you because you are a minimalist, don't judge others because they're not. Also, I have tons of "stuff" and I like it all and I am bloody well happy - extremely happy. What upsets me is people who think everybody should mold into their way or there's something wrong with them. When you come to BC and you see a cyclist with a polka-dot helmet on and she's smiling - do the right thing, wave and smile back. Life's too short to be so opinionated (narrow-minded). Smile, it won't kill you.

  24. #24
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    2010 Cannondale Touring 2 that I use a Burley Travoy with
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    900 Miles: Long Distance Test Tour with a Burley Travoy

    http://gearjunkie.com/burley-travoy-bike-tour

    Should help quite a bit of people with questions.

    Tracey

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traceyge View Post
    Like who cares how much stuff you carry and what others carry? Aren't we all individuals? Aren't we all entitled to do what we want? Why do people like you have to insinuate your way is right and ours is wrong?
    Well, since the OP is carrying a quite large volume of stuff, and the Travoy will not handle as much volume... it seems to me that he'd likely find it quite unsuitable.

    For my uses, the Travoy is also quite unsuitable. I have panniers and like them. When I use a trailer, I'm looking to haul cargo that can't reasonably fit in panniers. Y'know, stuff like air compressors, cans of paint, lumber, parts of a drum kit, things like that. Or I'm looking to haul more volume than can reasonably fit in panniers.

    This doesn't make a Travoy a bad piece of kit. My sleeping bag is a pretty oddball thing - a 45F down mummy bag. Most folks wouldn't find much use for it. For me it's about as good as it gets, since I hate to be cold, and I wouldn't dream of camping in weather that was predicted to get down to 55F at night. The Travoy is rather specialized, like my sleeping bag.

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