Panniers VS Trailers

Discussion in 'Touring and recreational cycling' started by imagesinthewind, Sep 5, 2006.

  1. imagesinthewind

    imagesinthewind New Member

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    For those who have used both panniers and trailers, which did you like best?
    Which worked better for you?

    Thanks for the info!
     
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  2. stokell

    stokell New Member

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    Don't even ask!

    There appears to be two camps and no converts.

    I would never consider a trailer for touring. Junk fills the space you have. If you have no additional space, you will think carefully about carrying around that blow up swimming pool you might use if the weather is good.

    It's much more Zen to travel minimally. Also, fewer people will point at you and laugh out load.
     
  3. daveornee

    daveornee New Member

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    I've done both and see advantages/disadvantages to both.
    Panniers are lighter and require more discipline in packing/organization.
    Trailers are heavier/slower but allow you to throw items in the huge bag and ride off.
    I am back to steel Tubus racks and Ortlieb panniers. Lighter and more well organized is an advantage to me. Each tour I take out my check list and try to think of items I can get by without.
     
  4. stokell

    stokell New Member

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    That's my mantra. A couple of years ago I bought the high end Arkel panniers. They actually allow you to be not as disciplined because you can grab things from the bottom without having to pull everything out. They also have lots of pockets, so you can keep your tools and cooking utensils and spices separate from your clothing and tent (in my case; hammock). Love them!
     
  5. philso

    philso New Member

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    i started off with a trailer on my first tour. i was still in highschool and even dumber than i am now. of course i piled on all sorts of stuff i thought i needed. as soon as i got back from that tour, i sold it.

    today i use two panniers and a rack pack or just lash the tent and sleeping pad on the rear rack. light, not particularly bulky, and did i mention light?

    it might sound like i'm against trailers, but i'm not. it just depends on what kind of tour experience you want, just like camping. do you want to sleep in kind of late, brew up some real coffee, maybe bake up some corn bread, fry up some bacon and settle down by the stream with a good book before breaking camp, or get up and get moving.

    essentially, i think it comes down to this, and it's not an either/or situation; more like a sliding scale. do you want to enjoy your time on the bike or off the bike? if you just gotta have that extra thick sleeping pad, spacious tent, dutch oven, and don't mind hauling a heavy trailer because you don't mind taking plenty of breaks, that's what you should do. if you want to cover some serious distance, don't want to bust your butt crossing mountains, and don't mind doing without a few creature comforts, stick with the panniers. [​IMG]
     
  6. blackbird05

    blackbird05 New Member

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    Personally, I'm in favour of the panniers. While a trailer is easier to pack into, it can be a serious pain to tow if you're travelling narrow single-track roads. You're also paying for the extra storage space by giving up flexibility when you're transporting your equipment. With panniers, you can unhook them and toss them along with the bike into a car, bus, train or bicycle box for the plane. The trailer requires more space and becomes another "big thing" to load.
    Best of luck with your decision!
     
  7. imagesinthewind

    imagesinthewind New Member

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    Thanks for the replies.

    The DH and I are going around Lake Erie. The DH says that panniers will be the way to go. I'm good either way but I'm kind of afraid that the bike will end up shaky and hard to control.
    But we'll see, I think we're going to try out both next summer and go for weekenders and see which we like best.
    Thanks again!
     
  8. terry prowse

    terry prowse New Member

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    g'day mate, i use both. sometimes on a ride of over 500k's in the bush i use front and rear panniers and my bob trailer, mainly to carry water as there ain't much in my area of the world. i just bought a new road bike and the first thing that i fitted was a bob skewer, so now i can use mY bob behind the road bike when i want. i like the choice as to wheather i take panniers or bob. love both. but for swapping between bikes, (no pannier racks on my new race bike) the BOB is the ducks guts. regards Terry [email protected]
     
  9. Velotour

    Velotour New Member

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    I have always used panniers. I have read several cycle touring journals in which some tourers used panniers and others used trailers. The cyclists I read all were satisfied with their trailers, but quite a few seemed to have recurrent problems with the points where the trailer attacked to the bike.

    In my own opinion, and I have never used a trailer, a trailer is more weight and more moving parts to break, and more tires to be punctured. Keeping touring as simple as possible in my way. Add a trailer and you add problems, but like the others said who did use trailers, they performed quite well.
     
  10. terry prowse

    terry prowse New Member

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    I use a BOB trailer , one wheel, good attachment points on BOB's own skewer. Don't ever buy a trailer with two wheels. the bob followes you exactly. mine has a shock system and is knows as a IBES. never had a puncher in it in all the thousands of kollometers its done, never broken a spoke, never had to regrease the wheel bearings. Sounds like an add for BOB. tai'nt. I treid most other brands and none.repeat, none came within a bulls roar of the BOB. want to know more email me at [email protected] regards terry
     
  11. mcr2c384

    mcr2c384 New Member

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    What about bike lean with pannier and mounts? Is it harder to have control over your bike with all that weight directly on the bike? Is the effort used to make these corrections greater than the effort to pull the trailer up some killer mountain slopes? And what about added pressure to the wheelset with all the weight on top of the bike?:confused:
     
  12. terry prowse

    terry prowse New Member

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    It could be about persionel preferance!! it could, but it 'aint. with equal weight on board, the bike is eiser to ride with the Bob than with the same weight in the panniers on the bike. Aspecially going up hill. tis' much harder peddeling up hill with the weight on the bike, than on the trailer. Why/ I dont know. What I do know is that with the weight lower on the trailer it is MUCH more stable undering cornerng and if you allow a few more feet to stop, the overall handlering is much better. Very easy to get used to. Why havent I answered sooner--- I've been for a 1100k ride, and yes you gessed it, with the Bob.
    regards terry:p ;) :)
     
  13. mcr2c384

    mcr2c384 New Member

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    Yeah it would seem easier to me to pull the weight instead of just adding tons of dead weight to your bike.
     
  14. Specialized Rid

    Specialized Rid New Member

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    I definitely believe it is a matter of weight and what kind of terrain you want to cover. Panniers are brilliant in warm climates where you are not carrying to much on relatively smooth terrain. The trailer, I found most useful when taking rougher trails, where you don't have to balance all this extra weight and you can attach them onto a full suspension bike if you’re after a picnic in the mountains:rolleyes: There are plenty of good replies to help you make up your mind. Good luck
     
  15. islandboy

    islandboy New Member

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    I love using my BOB trailer for groceries, taking tools to work and SHORT trips. My cycling partner hates the BOB, she is lighter and it tends to cause her to lose balance at higher speeds :confused: 20 to 40 km. We both agree that for extended trips front and rear panniers are the way to go. We did BC's Arrow lakes with the BOB and took way too much stuff:eek: . We did New Zealands South Island with panniers - a great trip:cool: . check out my website ....

    And cars tend to give you a wider berth when the BOB is swinging a nice size flag :p
     
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