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Old 09-01-13, 04:49 PM   #1
mr,grumpy 
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Child Carrying advice wanted

WHat I have is a four year old, forty pound kid, give or take. He starts preschool next week at a building with NO parking. Normally I drag his little but around in a trailer but narrow roads mixed with super busy roads.... you get the idea. I think he's pretty much out-grown the child seat that I gave away any way.

So,

Is this an excuse to build an extra-cycle?
Just let him ride on the back-rack?
One of those fancy Half-a-bike thingies?

What's the best solution?
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Old 09-01-13, 06:06 PM   #2
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In lieu of a Big Dummy I would get a Burley Piccolo,

http://www.rei.com/product/843750/bu...c-001b2166c62d
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Old 09-02-13, 08:51 AM   #3
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Actually, I don't get the idea; what is the difference between a trailer and a Piccolo/'half-a-bike' thingy except that you lose space to carry stuff and lose weather protection for the kid? Most report that drivers give more space/leeway to a trailer than a bike, so for safety's sake, I'd think a trailer is still the way the go.
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Old 09-02-13, 09:09 AM   #4
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Keep using the trailer or go the xtracycle/big dummy/longtail route. Never been a huge fan of the trail a bikes, but that may just be me.

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Old 09-02-13, 09:22 AM   #5
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How about just throwing some buddy-pegs on and letting him ride on the package tray? Its rated at 50 pounds....
The trailer takes up a lot of space. It's not the people seeing it and giving it a wide birth (people DO do that around here) it's that the people who DON'T see it are twice as likely to whack it (compared to the width of a trail-a-bike or B.D.
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Old 09-02-13, 08:02 PM   #6
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...it's that the people who DON'T see it are twice as likely to whack it (compared to the width of a trail-a-bike or B.D.
If you can produce any substantiation for the claim that trailers are twice as likely to be hit than trail-a-bikes because people don't see them (or for any other reason), I'd be damn surprised. Admit it: you pulled that stat out of your a**, didn't you?
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Old 09-02-13, 08:16 PM   #7
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If you can produce any substantiation for the claim that trailers are twice as likely to be hit than trail-a-bikes because people don't see them (or for any other reason), I'd be damn surprised. Admit it: you pulled that stat out of your a**, didn't you?
Yep.
Based on nothing other than a trailer is (more than) twice as wide as a half-a-bike thingie.
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Old 09-02-13, 09:05 PM   #8
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Yep.
Based on nothing other than a trailer is (more than) twice as wide as a half-a-bike thingie.
The concept of conspicuity suggests that wider may increase visibility, and ergo, safety. It's impossible to guard against every potential eventuality, however.
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Old 09-02-13, 10:46 PM   #9
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"The concept of conspicuity suggests"
The Concept of "i didn't bother to read the post and just want to throw big words around suggests" that you are quite excited about being you.
Once again, the concern is "
it's that the people who DON'T see it".
Those folks, the ones who have Zero percent chance of purposely avoiding it, those are the ones that I don't want to be 100% more likely to
hit it.
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Old 09-03-13, 02:05 AM   #10
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I just got a xtracycle hooptie for my big dummy and it really boosts my confidence level. I use it for my 6 year old and 2.5 y.o. daughters. Before the purchase, my 6 year old would hold onto the stoker bar but i would always worry about her falling off. I thought about trailers and i'm extremely paranoid of cars hitting anything being towed behind me since I can't see what is going on back there. Here is a link to the hooptie to give you an idea of the setup.
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Old 09-03-13, 04:56 PM   #11
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"The concept of conspicuity suggests"
The Concept of "i didn't bother to read the post and just want to throw big words around suggests" that you are quite excited about being you.
Once again, the concern is "
it's that the people who DON'T see it".
Those folks, the ones who have Zero percent chance of purposely avoiding it, those are the ones that I don't want to be 100% more likely to
hit it.
I certainly read it, but apparently I just don't get your meaning...unless I'm not getting your meaning again and you just don't know what the hell you're talking about.

Anyway, good luck, and I sincerely hope you find a solution to your inscrutable problem.
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Old 09-03-13, 05:58 PM   #12
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I certainly read it, but apparently I just don't get your meaning...unless I'm not getting your meaning again and you just don't know what the hell you're talking about.

Anyway, good luck, and I sincerely hope you find a solution to your inscrutable problem.
Do you have a trail-a-bike?
DO you have a trailer?
Do you even have a kid?
Other than an agenda about what car drivers are might or might not do if the do or do not notice MY kid in his trailer and a boat-load of inflated and unsubstantiated opinions what DO you have? The vast majority of this thread is taken up by your postings, yet you bring nothing of substance to the conversation. What I would like to hear about is other peoples experiences actually transporting actual children to and from actual places here in the real world.
I KNOW, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that you will need to have the last word but after that please don't litter my thread with your pixels any more.
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Old 09-04-13, 08:12 AM   #13
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I have a Burley Piccolo, and it would be my choice in your situation. I would not confuse it with other brands. I used to own a Trail-a-Bike, and I would not want to use one again.
I have put thousands of miles on mine and I actually find the safety is better than with the trailer since the kid is higher up and the rig is more nimble.
The Burley rack can hold panniers for cargo, and I have also put a rack on the Piccolo itself.
I do like Xtracycles and other longtails, but my Cetma cargo bike is my favourite way to transport kids and stuff.
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Old 09-04-13, 08:20 AM   #14
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Do you have a trail-a-bike?
DO you have a trailer?
Do you even have a kid?
Other than an agenda about what car drivers are might or might not do if the do or do not notice MY kid in his trailer and a boat-load of inflated and unsubstantiated opinions what DO you have? The vast majority of this thread is taken up by your postings, yet you bring nothing of substance to the conversation. What I would like to hear about is other peoples experiences actually transporting actual children to and from actual places here in the real world.
I KNOW, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that you will need to have the last word but after that please don't litter my thread with your pixels any more.
You're not gonna like this, but if you'd just used the search function, you could have spared yourself the frustration...

Yes, I have a trail-a-bike.

Yes, I have a trailer; two, in fact, and one of a unique type which I'd wager you've never even heard of. Wanna take the bet? I'll even give you a hint: it's an aerodynamic, inline seating, kids bike trailer. If you Google it and hit one of my videos or pics, however, you lose.

Yes, I have a kid; two, in fact, and they're both still young enough to ride in the trailers, even though one is well beyond your 40lb weight handling capacity!

What else do I have, you ask? Again, if only you'd used the search function, this wouldn't be so painful for you...

I have a passenger side car for the bike that I use for carrying kids.

I have carried kids for 7 years, in 4 seasons of weather; I have done it in small towns, midsize towns, and big cities; I have carried them on paved roads, dirt roads, in bike lanes, on sidewalks and on trails; I have modified hitches and head rests to work in trailers, padded frame rails to be more comfy for nodding baby noggins; I have trailered during the day, and during the night; I have custom fitted programmable light arrays to trailers; I have replaced broken trailer frame components; I've hauled kids up hills and down hills, and at speeds some people can't do solo on a bike; I have carried kid and her bike in the trailer; I have carried 3 kids at once; I have had two trailers on one bike at the same time; I have had a sidecar and a trailer on at the same time; I have had a sidecar, a trail-a-bike, and a trailer on at the same time; I have pulled kids with road bikes, mountain bikes, and folding bikes...

Let me be clear with you about what I have: experience carrying kids.

I get you may not like the advice you solicited, but you should think more, or better, before dismissing others' advice as insubstantial, unsubstantiated, and fictional. I've got several posts in a few forums here that would have testified to my bona fides; hell, you could have Googled my username and saved yourself the embarrassment of looking stupid, but instead you foolishly decided to shoot off at the mouth and make pointless comments.

You may have started the thread, but I'm definitely owning it.
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Old 09-04-13, 08:30 AM   #15
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I have a lot of miles with 2 kids on a trailer-cycle. A lower end model (no gears)...

Kids loved it.
It was safer than there own bike, especially in traffic. It did seem to teach them how to ride in traffic.

I saw the other day a guy with his 2 kids on his tandem. One on the stoker with a clip on crank! the other in a kids seat (fast asleep).

You can find pictures of tandems w/ trailers and or trailer-cycles in the touring with family realms.
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Old 09-04-13, 12:29 PM   #16
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I have a lot of miles with 2 kids on a trailer-cycle. A lower end model (no gears)...
Oh, do you mean you have a tandem tag-along? What do you think about it? I've only seen one, and the guy who owned it said it was an awful, floppy mess to ride. I find my regular, single tag along unpleasant for that reason, so I could well imagine what his tandem was like, but that's the only one I've ever seen.
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Old 09-04-13, 06:10 PM   #17
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Oh, do you mean you have a tandem tag-along? What do you think about it? I've only seen one, and the guy who owned it said it was an awful, floppy mess to ride. I find my regular, single tag along unpleasant for that reason, so I could well imagine what his tandem was like, but that's the only one I've ever seen.
Nope.

Nice 90's steal tandem. The crank set used a pinch clap or whatever you call it. Like some derailleurs. A chain ran between the clip on crank set and the normal chain wheels on the bottom bracket.

The younger child rode in a kid seat on the rack.

I have a single speed trailer-cycle, like this.
http://www.bikekidshop.com/trailer-cycles-e-694.html

Daughter would pedal like mad downhill, laughing with such mad glee. We once hit 55 on a hill... I WAS NOT HAPPY!
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Old 09-30-13, 10:07 AM   #18
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Do the trail-a-bikes with seat post attachments fit well around bike racks? Or do I need to remove it to fit one?

chaadster - Sounds like you are definitely in the running for ultimate bike dad. I'll have to search for some of these contraptions of yours!
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Old 09-30-13, 10:43 AM   #19
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Do the trail-a-bikes with seat post attachments fit well around bike racks? Or do I need to remove it to fit one?
Both of my trail-a-bikes fit my variety of bicycles without any interference with the rack. I've got both a trek trail-a-bike (6 speed) that I bought used and a WeeRide Co-Pilot that I just bought new. For kids that you are afraid are a little too young, you can buy a seat back with seatbelt, but neither of my kids needed it (my son turns 4 next month and he just started riding one last week; my daughter has been riding one for years).

I haven't had any problems balancing with either of these bikes. I also have an Adams Tandem Trail-a-bike and I find the hitch in those has more play than either of my other trail-a-bikes and was significantly harder to balance (the fact that Adams insists on putting on knobby tires doesn't help any here). If you are worried about balancing, you can try the WeeHoo Trailer, which has both a lower center of mass and can take kids as young as two.

With both a trailer and a trail-a-bike, I run a flag and have found that I get quite a bit more room than when riding by myself.
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Old 09-30-13, 11:56 AM   #20
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What's the best solution?
I suggest a Bak Fiets/Long John type front hauler, you can put a seat in it, and take it out to haul all sorts of stuff

Its an investment, but a long term one . Harry vs Larry, sell one with a heat treated aluminum frame

CAT Oregon and Cetma have steel frame ones .

(I have some Long Haul Frame components in my touring Bike frame Jan, at CAT, and I built in the 90's)

http://hpm.catoregon.org/?page_id=7



though the Burly Piccolo .. to bike front wheel conversion, as a first 2 wheeler
will extend the usefulness of that choice.

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Old 09-30-13, 02:13 PM   #21
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Other options would be a Bobike Junior (http://www.bobikeusa.com/Bobike-Junior-BB-JR.htm) or a Yepp GMG911 (available from My Dutch Bike: http://www.mydutchbike.com/, even though it's not listed on their web-site) seat mounted on the Yepp Easy Fit adapter (also available from My Dutch Bike) on top of a rack that can handle ~50lbs. Both of those would serve nicely for another few years.
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Old 09-30-13, 08:13 PM   #22
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Do the trail-a-bikes with seat post attachments fit well around bike racks? Or do I need to remove it to fit one?

chaadster - Sounds like you are definitely in the running for ultimate bike dad. I'll have to search for some of these contraptions of yours!
The main issue with TABs and racks is what you've got on the rack. Trunk bags, baskets, and crates all can create obstacles to mounting, as the arm has to arc across the rack. How much airspace, or clearance, you'll have above the rack and below the arm is largely determined by how much seatpost space you have available. Small riders on larger wheeled bikes have the greatest challenge, e.g. a 5'er on a 29er; I'm pretty confident that even a long-legged 5'10"er on a 36er couldn't make one work at all!

As a general rule, I'd recommend mounting a TAB bracket as low on the post as possible, to reduce leverage on the post.

Probably the TAB 'best-of-class' award goes to Burley for the Piccolo with it's rack mounted hitch, but of course, then you totally lose use of the rack top for anything else, which in the case of the typical seatpost mount setup, isn't of much use in any case. Probably panniers could be fitted with a Piccolo depending on rack design.

Also, thanks for the compliment, but while I do enjoy hauling kids around, I'm just one of many who do, and don't deserve any special distinction for it.
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Old 10-01-13, 11:14 AM   #23
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I think all of the suggestions above could work.

mr,grumpy, despite chaadster's tone (and yours), he makes a good point. Trailers are quite visible. I've been pulling a trailer on and off for 24 years. Drivers think there's a kid in my trailer (though my kids are adults now, and I only tow cargo). As a result, they drive cautiously around me. I feel having a trailer enhances my safety.

I've had one close call in all these years, and we did not end up getting hit. That was in a part of New Jersey where people drive particularly badly, and New Jersey is a state with a reputation for bad drivers, and it's a reputation that is earned.
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Old 10-03-13, 11:28 AM   #24
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Both of our kids grew up in a Winchester double wide trailer until they could fit a trailer-bike. There was one awkward year before the first was big enough for a trailer-bike and the baby was occupying the full Winchester in a suspended car seat. That mean each of us towing a Winchester. Two bikes, two trailers, two kids. We only did short rides that year since we could not change out the tractors.
The trailer-bike attached to the seat post. I could still carry panniers, but the top deck was lost.
The trailer-bike was used. Don't know the brand. Rock doggone solid and with the stoker, a pleasure to pull.
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Old 02-24-14, 03:37 AM   #25
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Hi there,
my blog covers lots of different options for carrying kids on bikes. Have a look!
makingconcretejungle@wordpress.com
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