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Utility Cycling Want to haul groceries, beer, maybe even your kids? You don't have to live car free to put your bike to use as a workhorse. Here's the place to share and learn about the bicycle as a utility vehicle.

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Old 04-05-12, 02:28 PM   #1
solidfish
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Bottoming out a child bike trailer

I recently purchased an InStep bike trailer for a single child. Its very light and great but I had one concern. The bottom of the trailer is just cloth material. Has anyone had problems or an incident bottoming out the trailer? I could imagine it could hurt the child if some road bump were to hit them from below since its only cloth...
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Old 04-05-12, 02:56 PM   #2
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Not an InStep, but my old Trek trailer has a cloth bottom, and I've put that thing through the ringer. No problems whatsoever in that department.
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Old 04-05-12, 05:24 PM   #3
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Our first cargo trailer was an older Bell kids trailer. I put a section of 3/4" plywood on the frame and then put the bottom of a plastic dog kennel on top of the wood. No issues. (of course no humans ride in it, only our Fur kids and "stuff")
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Old 04-05-12, 09:40 PM   #4
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Not an InStep, but my old Trek trailer has a cloth bottom, and I've put that thing through the ringer. No problems whatsoever in that department.
+1 with an old Bell child trailer. Never a problem.

One time, however, I had not fully conceptualized/internalized the ground clearance. I went off a curb (nearly parallel to the curb, not perpendicular). The left wheel of the trailer went off the curb and the bottom of the trailer dragged on the curb edge until the right wheel dropped. It wore a few small holes across the bottom of the canvas, but no harm to the passenger!
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Old 04-06-12, 09:22 AM   #5
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We had an In Step and a Trek (still in use) and never had problems with either of them. And they both have some serious miles on them, and up to 50lbs in the In Step (max I believe) with no show of strain on materials.
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Old 04-06-12, 01:13 PM   #6
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add a layer of coroplast inside , so there is a deck other than just the fabric..

You measure the ground clearance when its on the bike ? what is it?
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Old 04-06-12, 03:54 PM   #7
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The only time you'll ever scrape the bottom is if you ride off a tall curb. I have an old Instep (plastic body) and an old Winchesters Original with cloth body. both have a 100 pound capacity (they were designed for two kids) and have no problems with either.
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Old 04-07-12, 01:40 PM   #8
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great. Thanks for all the info!
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Old 04-09-12, 07:52 PM   #9
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I asked a local bike shop about that very thing and was told to just cut a piece of plywood to fit the floor.
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Old 04-10-12, 11:55 AM   #10
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just that coroplast is lighter and waterproof, and if you don't mind it being soiled
with a politician's name and slogan on it , free on the 1st Wednesday in most Novembers.
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Old 04-10-12, 12:05 PM   #11
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just that coroplast is lighter and waterproof, and if you don't mind it being soiled
with a politician's name and slogan on it , free on the 1st Wednesday in most Novembers.
Good idea. I had a friend who kept having those get put in her yard (not at her request). She has more than she can use for garage sale signs and was looking for a use for the rest.
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