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Trailer/jogger for a daily commute?

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Trailer/jogger for a daily commute?

Old 01-22-12, 05:59 PM
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himespau 
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Trailer/jogger for a daily commute?

When the weather's nice (mainly May-September/October), I like to commute by bicycle 2-3 days a week. Our day care is about a mile from my house and ~25 minutes by bike (vs 45 minutes by public transit - we are car free) from my work. It's about half a mile from my wife's work. I drop my almost 1 year old off in the morning and my wife picks her up at night (our schedules are staggered to take into account the day care is open fewer ours than we work.

On days when I commute by bike, I push the stroller in one hand and my bike with the other for the mile to the day care and then ride the rest of the way in. Doing the two handed thing over curbs and what not for a mile can be a pain, so I was thinking of getting a trailer so I could just ride with my daughter to her day care (and take her on longer weekend rides).

I've seen several trailers that claim to have a quick release from the bike and easily switch to jogger/stroller mode to be pushed home. Most of the reviews I've seen say the stroller type wheels aren't good for pushing very far, but some say the jogger wheels are ok. I'm interested in this because I could ride in to the day care, take the trailer off and switch down the wheel to jogger mode and my wife could push it home.

Anybody use one of these? Do they switch easily enough for that to be practical? Are there any that would stand up to daily use?

Is there one that anyone would recommend?

I see some like the Instep Sierra and Rocket that can be found in the $150 range. Then there's the burleys that you have to buy the jogger kit separately and total in at ~$600-700 when the jogger kit is included. And the Chariot runs even more.

I know InStep is owned by Pacific Bicycles who make schwinns these days so I sort of don't trust them, but, for being a quarter or less the price, I've seen several good reviews. Are they poor enough quality that they wouldn't hold up? Or are they worth trying?

I don't have a huge budget, but I don't want to drop $200 on an InStep or something similar only to have it break easily and have to drop the cash on a burley later anyway?

Anybody have one they like?

We only have one kid now, but might have a second and I like the idea of using it for groceries when the daughter outgrows it if we still have it.
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Old 01-23-12, 07:29 AM
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bendembroski
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Ok, this probably isn't going to help you much, but I'll put it out there anyway.

I've been using a trailer to cart my kids around for about 3 years now. It's the now discontinued Trek Go-Bug Deluxe, with a jogger attachment. For a while, I'd use the jogger attachment when walking the trailer about, but it was a bit of faff to swap out. On day, I just had a go at balancing the trailer on two wheels with no attachement at all on the front and found it surprisingly easy.

I'll happily do this for walks up to 2 miles. No real issues aside from larger curbs and bumps require the trailer to be 'backed' over them.

You might want to give that a try.

For what it's worth, the Trek Trailer has held up to basically 3 years of daily usage (I'm guessing we're hitting 2,000 miles or so) with no issues whatsoever. Maybe look for one used. I would say there is little reason to buy a trailer new. They aren't complicated, and any problems that they might have would be pretty apparent..
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Old 01-23-12, 07:54 AM
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I just picked up an instep trailer last week for $20.00 on craigslist. Its not the stroller type, but it was well used and tried it on my bike this weekend through ice, slush, and snow and it worked great. The guy I bought it from used to carry both of his kids in it for a couple years. For 2 miles a day, Im pretty sure it would work fine
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Old 01-23-12, 10:25 PM
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Do you think your wife would ride, too? You could get two mounting posts, I imagine, and switch a trailer between your bike and hers. Then you wouldn't need the stroller function.

We've never used a trailer, but we have a topeak babyseat, and we used to leave the seat at daycare, so either parent could do pick up or drop off. It has a nice quick release mechanism that makes it easy to swap between racks.
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Old 01-24-12, 06:20 AM
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Originally Posted by ebartom View Post
Do you think your wife would ride, too? You could get two mounting posts, I imagine, and switch a trailer between your bike and hers. Then you wouldn't need the stroller function.

We've never used a trailer, but we have a topeak babyseat, and we used to leave the seat at daycare, so either parent could do pick up or drop off. It has a nice quick release mechanism that makes it easy to swap between racks.
I've thought of that, but my wife's not much of a cyclist (through choice not ability). Also, she hates riding in the traffic we have around here. I am building her a new bike though to see if her lack of riding is due to a cheap uncomfortable bike, so who knows.
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