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Opinions from the utility cyclists

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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.

Opinions from the utility cyclists

Old 01-13-08, 09:36 PM
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Upthebikes610
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Opinions from the utility cyclists

Hello to everyone, this is my first post in here. I have a mountain bike laying around that I've been wanting to put into utility use. I've been going back and forth between putting a free radical kit on it or getting a trailer. The draw of the trailer for me would be being able to still use the bike on single track. Everything I've read has pointed to a trailer not living up to the xtracycle experience. Another thing that draws me to the freeradical is being able to carry a passenger. I was wondering if anyone could give me their opinions on the subject or their experiences. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers!
Andrew
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Old 01-13-08, 09:41 PM
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BikeManDan
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Well you did ask for opinions so here it goes:

Don't try to multitask your bike. Keep your mountain bike your mountain bike and get a utility bike for utility purposes. Either look into some of the new longtails like Kona Ute or Surly Big Dummy or find yourself a 90s cromoly rigid mountain bike frame and put an Xtracycle and slicks on it. Longtails definitely have their advantages especially if you're considering taking passengers
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Old 01-13-08, 10:38 PM
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Xtracycles *can* do intermediate XC riding. Forget about anything more aggressive, AM is out of the question. If you're a rider who likes to get out there and see the trees, the Xtra can handle going off road. If you're the type that likes to see the trees and jump over them too, its probably best to have a seperate system.

Trailers are very useful, but longtails are extremely useful. I much prefer my Xtracycle to any previous solution that i've tried out. Its nice to just have it there, ready, almost completely unobtrusive. There are a handful of trailers out there that can match what the Xtracycle has in hauling capacity, but none of them mesh so well with your ride, and most *dont* come anywhere near the same capacity as the Xtra does. Worth the price.

Still, dwoloz has a good point: if you really love to ride as recreation, it can be good to have one for business and one for pleasure. I still love riding my Xtracycle, its still fun, but its not hopping any trees or winning any races.
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Old 01-14-08, 05:46 AM
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Ah single track, mt biking, cargo and passengers

Enough said?
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Old 01-14-08, 06:18 AM
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The xtracycle is the bigger commitment in terms of cost and your bike. A trailer is a cheap and easy way to just stick a toe into the 'utility lifestyle' water and see if it works for you.

You can always get the xtracycle later if/when you decide to fully commit and the trailer can still be towed behing the xtracycle-converted bike for even more carrying capacity. It's also handy to have because you can tow it behind a different bike if your xtracycle bike is temporarily out of action.
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Old 01-14-08, 08:12 PM
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Thanks for the replys. Sorry that I left an important bit out, if I did go the xtracycle route I'd sacrifice having a mountain bike. You all did give me a lot more to think about. Whenever I make a choice I'll be sure to post it!
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Old 01-17-08, 07:56 PM
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Wink

Andrew,

What did I tell you about looking at this stuff? I think you know what the right thing to do is. Did you catch the picture in this string of posts? I don't want that for you.

P.S.

R.R. on Monday. What time? My wife is buying the first round. She is excited as am I. Endless fries...........oh yeah.........and BIG mugs. Stop nerding out and ride your bike.................a normal one please.
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Old 01-17-08, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by The Human Car View Post
Ah single track, mt biking, cargo and passengers

Enough said?
I love that picture! I printed it off a while back and have it on my office wall as a reminder of how great life should be! People comment on it all the time. I wish I had had that option when my two were younger, but we did fine with what we had. FWIW I would get a second bike to convert to xtracycle, then when funds allow grab a Burley or Bikes at Work trailer for the really heavy duty hauling.

Aaron
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