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Trek Transport?

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Old 12-31-11, 09:34 PM
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Mark Stone
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Trek Transport?

Soon I will be updating my bike (the Rig) to an --actual-- Rig, and I am looking seriously at the Trek Transport, the one without electric assist. I know some folks here use it - give me all the dope, is it great? Is the longer chain a real pain, or is there no difference in maintenance? I'll be carrying groceries, guitars (in hard-shell cases), doing other types of shopping, and evolving into the car-free life. Let me hear all the good points/bad points about the Transport, and let me hear other suggestions too. I love Trek, they have always been good to me. Here is the link to the Transport page at Trek Dot Com.
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Old 01-01-12, 01:19 AM
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I have not used one, ridden one, or even seen one in person.

However, I've read in these and other forums some concern about the center of the rear rack being behind the rear axel. I'm not sure how this might affect handling. This is the only negative I've read about, and it's only theoretical as I've not read of any actual owners complaining about it.

This guy over at MTBR really seems to like his.
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Old 01-01-12, 01:16 PM
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Mark Stone
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Originally Posted by hopperja View Post
I have not used one, ridden one, or even seen one in person.

However, I've read in these and other forums some concern about the center of the rear rack being behind the rear axel. I'm not sure how this might affect handling. This is the only negative I've read about, and it's only theoretical as I've not read of any actual owners complaining about it.

This guy over at MTBR really seems to like his.
I see in your sig a Kona bike, how is the quality of Kona equipment? Another possibility is the Kona Ute, similar to the Transport but a couple hundred bucks less although I have to drive a ways to the nearest dealership.
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Old 01-01-12, 09:44 PM
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Originally Posted by hopperja View Post
I have not used one, ridden one, or even seen one in person.

However, I've read in these and other forums some concern about the center of the rear rack being behind the rear axel. I'm not sure how this might affect handling. This is the only negative I've read about, and it's only theoretical as I've not read of any actual owners complaining about it.

This guy over at MTBR really seems to like his.
Thanks for the mention!!!!! Yes I do really like mine. I haven't noticed any issues about the center of the rear rack. No problems that I have noticed.

It's a pretty solid bike and doesn't have the flex issues that a lot of the xtracycle riders seem to have.

Anyway, I am ALWAYS open for questions and answers. I can be messaged here or on MTBR as well.
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Old 01-01-12, 09:53 PM
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Last August (2011) I had the opportunity to test drive a Trek and a Surly in the same parking lot. I had already decided that money was not a factor (same as buying my Grand Touring Bike in 1984). I bought the Surly Big Dummy. The Trek did not have rear disk brakes. I was not impressed with the rear cargo setup. Any damage or replacement would have to be from Trek. I thought that the frame flexed too much. Aluminum may be light, but it also has a "flex life". I was spending serious latinum to buy a long term investment. I bought the Big Dummy.
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Old 01-01-12, 10:42 PM
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Originally Posted by salek View Post
... The Trek did not have rear disk brakes. I was not impressed with the rear cargo setup. Any damage or replacement would have to be from Trek. I thought that the frame flexed too much. Aluminum may be light, but it also has a "flex life"...
I'm sure the Big Dummy is a fantastic bike and I'm sure it'll serve you well.

Yes, aluminum does have a flex life, or so I've read. I understand this is not a reference to the amount of flex in any one flexing, but that it can only flex a fixed number of cycles before it breaks. When the frame breaks, if you have it that long, Trek has a life-time frame warranty - they'll replace it.

Regarding disc brakes, I do prefer discs. However, the front brakes do the majority of the braking, so a disc in the rear is not nearly as important. I wouldn't want a cargo bike with a rim front brake, but a rim rear brake wouldn't be a deal breaker (though I'd prefer it to be disc).

I don't have a "cargo" bike, but do have my Kona converted to utility duty. With it I've pulled over 500 pounds behind me, so I have some experience with braking while pulling unusually heavy loads.
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Old 01-02-12, 05:49 AM
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A couple of points about long bikes in general:

-The rider is far ahead of the rear axle. This means that load behind the axle does not cause trouble to the same degree as on a bike with the rear tire almost touching the seat post. Forward is better always, though.

-With a heavy load on the rear, it will not be possible to lift the rear wheel before the front wheel skids, which is not true of normal bikes. On a normal bike on pavement, you can stop in the shortest possible distance using only the front brake. On a loaded long bike, or a tandem, or on a poor traction surface, you need the rear brake to handle far more of the braking load in a minimum distance stop. Also, you have a lot more weight, but not much more aero drag, so the brakes are far more needed to limit speed on long downhills. These considerations make the rear brake far more important than on a normal bike.
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Old 01-02-12, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by tractorlegs View Post
Is the longer chain a real pain, or is there no difference in maintenance?
I have a Big Dummy and a long-wheelbase recumbent. Both have long chains. The only difference with a longer chain is it takes a little bit longer to clean and lube the chain. You may have to buy chain lube a little more frequently. It's not really a concern.

On the bright side, the longer chain will get more miles on it due to spreading the wear across more links.
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