Trailer decision help needed!

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Becka Currant, Feb 3, 2003.

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  1. After booking our holiday to France (yippee!) thoughts have now turned to how we will transport baby
    Becka whilst cycling. When we go at the beginning of Sept the child will be about 5 1/2 months old.
    We're going to the Pyrenees (and get to see a couple of stages of the Vuelta, double yippee!).

    I really, really like the look of these:

    http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html

    even if they are blinking expensive. Main pluses at the moment are that it can be converted into a
    pushchair so we don't need to take a separate system with us, we can ensure the child is safe by
    putting in the car seat and it should hopefully have a good long lifespan before baby Becka can go
    onto a trailer bike. The only downside I can see is that Neil is going to have to work *very* hard
    with all the added weight!! (It might even mean I get to ride his Scott and he has to make do with
    my Dawes ;¬)

    Anyway, I'm after your opinions. If you've got one, how good is it. Are there alternatives that
    aren't quite as pricey (if so what!) but still as good.

    Thanks :¬)

    Becka
     
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  2. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <uEA%[email protected]>, Becka Currant
    <[email protected]> writes
    >After booking our holiday to France (yippee!) thoughts have now turned to how we will transport
    >baby Becka whilst cycling. When we go at the beginning of Sept the child will be about 5 1/2 months
    >old. We're going to the Pyrenees (and get to see a couple of stages of the Vuelta, double yippee!).
    >
    >I really, really like the look of these:
    >
    >http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html
    >

    Which ones?

    >even if they are blinking expensive. Main pluses at the moment are that it can be converted into a
    >pushchair so we don't need to take a separate system with us, we can ensure the child is safe by
    >putting in the car seat and it should hopefully have a good long lifespan before baby Becka can go
    >onto a trailer bike. The only downside I can see is that Neil is going to have to work *very* hard
    >with all the added weight!! (It might even mean I get to ride his Scott and he has to make do with
    >my Dawes ;¬)
    >
    >Anyway, I'm after your opinions. If you've got one, how good is it. Are there alternatives that
    >aren't quite as pricey (if so what!) but still as good.

    I have a Chariot Cabriolet, it's not cheap but IMO worth the money (about a years car insurance for
    our Ford Mondeo........). The construction and attention to details is good. There are the odd
    niggles of course, because no trailer has exactly the combination of features you want, but nothing
    to write home about.

    I don't actually use the jogger/push chair conversion, but bear in mind it will be rather bulkier
    than a normal single pushchair. For off the bike transport for baby a sling would be useful as well.
    We use a Huggababy - well not so much now, but in the first year we used it loads. You can stuff it
    in the trailer and then pop baby Becka in when you go shopping et. or wherever the trailer would be
    difficult to push as a buggy. - whatever I recommend getting one.

    <http://www.huggababy.co.uk/>

    Choosing a trailer was difficult, to much choice. some where easy, they were even more expensive, or
    didn't fold down enough. but that still left plenty of competition.

    I liked the ease of folding -very quick, the flexibility of weathercovers/shading, and the general
    feel of the thing. I never carried a baby seat in it, but shouldn't be a problem.

    I also went for the Weber coupling, which is an extra cost, but also IMO worth it if you sue the
    trailer a lot., though the 2002 models of the Chariots have some different coupling system anyway,
    but it predated ours, so don't know much about that.( For me an attraction of the Weber was that the
    standard coupling would have been harder (maybe impossible) to sue with a rear hub brake)

    It can be hard to get and see different trailers in the flesh, if you want to see ours you are
    welcome to come over and have a look.

    Have to say that ours hasn't got out of Yorkshire yet, but have more plans for this year. Main
    prerequisites for the towing bike are good low gears (esp in the Pyrenees......) and good brakes for
    coming down, speed isn't an issue, but feeling confident on the bike when towing is.
    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  3. Priorpark17

    Priorpark17 Guest

    I have a burley, and the key features on a trailer as I see it are: frame surrounds the wheels so If
    you hit a bollard or a tree it cannot get between the wheel and the trailer and have you off. I like
    the look of the Chauffeur CTS on http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.htm.
     
  4. In article <[email protected]>, chris French <[email protected]> wrote:

    >>I really, really like the look of these:
    >>
    >>http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html

    >Which ones?

    Good point! I guess either of the two cheaper models (cabriolet or chauffer).

    >I have a Chariot Cabriolet, it's not cheap but IMO worth the money (about a years car insurance for
    >our Ford Mondeo........). The construction and attention to details is good. There are the odd
    >niggles of course, because no trailer has exactly the combination of features you want, but nothing
    >to write home about.

    Excellent, thanks for the feedback.

    >I don't actually use the jogger/push chair conversion, but bear in mind it will be rather bulkier
    >than a normal single pushchair. For off the bike transport for baby a sling would be useful as
    >well. We use a Huggababy - well not so much now, but in the first year we used it loads. You can
    >stuff it in the trailer and then pop baby Becka in when you go shopping et. or wherever the trailer
    >would be difficult to push as a buggy. - whatever I recommend getting one.

    Originally when we booked the holiday we didn't think we'd even be able to get the pushchair bit of
    the travel system into the car and would therefore be totally relying on a sling to transport the
    baby around. I've got a second hand wilkinet coming to see if I like it but a lot of that will have
    to wait until the baby is born and we see what we/it likes. The flexibility of being able to convert
    the trailer would give us the option of being able to push baby round if/when we need to and also
    give us somewhere to stuff our kit if we've cycled to do some sighseeing (i.e. going into Lourdes
    etc) and don't want to leave everything unattended.

    >Choosing a trailer was difficult, to much choice. some where easy, they were even more expensive,
    >or didn't fold down enough. but that still left plenty of competition.

    Tell me about it!

    >I liked the ease of folding -very quick, the flexibility of weathercovers/shading, and the general
    >feel of the thing. I never carried a baby seat in it, but shouldn't be a problem.
    >
    >I also went for the Weber coupling, which is an extra cost, but also IMO worth it if you sue the
    >trailer a lot., though the 2002 models of the Chariots have some different coupling system anyway,
    >but it predated ours, so don't know much about that.( For me an attraction of the Weber was that
    >the standard coupling would have been harder (maybe impossible) to sue with a rear hub brake)

    Thanks, I'll pass that onto the technical director so he can factor that into our decision!

    >It can be hard to get and see different trailers in the flesh, if you want to see ours you are
    >welcome to come over and have a look.

    That would be fab, thank you. I'll leave taking you up on your offer until the baby has arrived but
    really appreciate it.

    >Have to say that ours hasn't got out of Yorkshire yet, but have more plans for this year. Main
    >prerequisites for the towing bike are good low gears (esp in the Pyrenees......) and good brakes
    >for coming down, speed isn't an issue, but feeling confident on the bike when towing is.

    Cool. That means I *definitely* get to ride the Scott then :¬)

    Thanks for your help

    Becka

    --
    Becka Currant All views are my own blah blah blah "From now on we're going to have a little less
    ritual and a little more fun around here". Spike in Buffy
     
  5. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected]
    (PRIORPARK17) wrote:
    >I have a burley, and the key features on a trailer as I see it are: frame surrounds the wheels so
    >If you hit a bollard or a tree it cannot get between the wheel and the trailer and have you off. I
    >like the look of the Chauffeur CTS on http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.htm.

    Thanks, and a very good point about the frame surrounds. I'll have a look at the burleys.

    becka

    --
    Becka Currant All views are my own blah blah blah "From now on we're going to have a little less
    ritual and a little more fun around here". Spike in Buffy
     
  6. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected]
    (PRIORPARK17) wrote:
    ><<I've got a second hand wilkinet coming>>
    >
    >Get in training http://www.wilkinet.co.uk/Videos.asp

    cool :¬)

    They've just sent me a .pdf of the instructions too!!

    Becka

    --
    Becka Currant All views are my own blah blah blah "From now on we're going to have a little less
    ritual and a little more fun around here". Spike in Buffy
     
  7. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected]
    (wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter) wrote:
    >>cool :¬)
    >>
    >>They've just sent me a .pdf of the instructions too!!
    >>
    >>Becka
    >
    >When Nathan was wee - I carried him everywhere in a front loaded baby sling. Wouldn't fancy trying
    >to get him in one of those now - he's taller than his Dad ;-)

    LOL!! No, and would/could also be a tad kinky too!!!!!!

    becka (rapidly donning flame suit...)

    --
    Becka Currant All views are my own blah blah blah "From now on we're going to have a little less
    ritual and a little more fun around here". Spike in Buffy
     
  8. Paul - XXX

    Paul - XXX Guest

    Becka Currant deftly scribbled ;

    > After booking our holiday to France (yippee!) thoughts have now turned to how we will transport
    > baby Becka whilst cycling. When we go at the beginning of Sept the child will be about 5 1/2
    > months old. We're going to the Pyrenees (and get to see a couple of stages of the Vuelta, double
    > yippee!).
    >
    > I really, really like the look of these:
    >
    > http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html
    >
    > even if they are blinking expensive. Main pluses at the moment are that it can be converted into a
    > pushchair so we don't need to take a separate system with us, we can ensure the child is safe by
    > putting in the car seat and it should hopefully have a good long lifespan before baby Becka can go
    > onto a trailer bike. The only downside I can see is that Neil is going to have to work *very* hard
    > with all the added weight!! (It might even mean I get to ride his Scott and he has to make do with
    > my Dawes ;¬)
    >
    > Anyway, I'm after your opinions. If you've got one, how good is it. Are there alternatives that
    > aren't quite as pricey (if so what!) but still as good.
    >
    > Thanks :¬)
    >
    > Becka

    Decathlon (Giltbrook, near Nottingham, just round the corner from my house) had some cycle trailers
    in. French (obviously) made, but cheap and looking very similar to the pages you posted. ISTR about
    £200 ish .. though may be waaay wrong on the price.

    --
    ...................................Paul-xxx Seti 1391 wu in 9942 hours
    http://setiathome.ssl.berkeley.edu/
     
  9. Rory

    Rory Guest

    [email protected] (Becka Currant) wrote in message
    news:<uEA%[email protected]>...
    > After booking our holiday to France (yippee!) thoughts have now turned to how we will transport
    > baby Becka whilst cycling. When we go at the beginning of Sept the child will be about 5 1/2
    > months old. We're going to the Pyrenees (and get to see a couple of stages of the Vuelta, double
    > yippee!).
    >
    > I really, really like the look of these:
    >
    > http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html

    Of those, I think the Ritschie 2 is the best. It was supposed to be available with "auflaufbremsen"
    (run-out brakes, or Pomme-de-terre au Gratin brakes?) which stop the trailer overtaking the tractor
    unit (that's you), but they don't seem to be available yet. Seems like a good idea though, but I've
    not had a problem and I do a lot of ups and downs.

    Me, I've a Leggero Classico (Swiss), which is pretty good, see:
    http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/leg_class.html It has a solid aluminium hull, and a very
    sturdy tubular frame. I have a safety-roof on order (hasn't come yet) that should help the roll-over
    protection. It's been very good in daily use since last June (2 kids to creche & back, c. 10 miles a
    day, and 200m climbs). The Becco elastomer hitch works well, and hasn't been damaged by the bike
    keeling over a few times, or serious honking up the hills (which destroyed the hitch - a Hebie F2 -
    on a previous trailer. I used a Weber babyseat in it for the youngest, from 3 months to 6 months,
    which also worked well - no complaints from the passengers.

    > The only downside I can see is that Neil is going to have to work *very* hard with all the added
    > weight!! (It might even mean I get to ride his Scott and he has to make do with my Dawes ;¬)

    You get used to it pretty quickly, and on the flat, it's hardly noticable.

    In general, I'm convinced that the trailer is a pretty safe option, it stands out in traffic (I've
    good lights on it at night), in case of the bike going down, the trailer stays upright and is
    stopped by the bike (on its side!). In case of a accident in traffic, a German insurance company's
    tests show it get pushed out of the way rather than crush (I've no desire to test this myself).
    Exhaust fumes are said to be less than if the kids were travelling in a car (the middle of the
    carriageways is where most of the fumes are outside of cars, so the trailer is normally well out of
    that area). I have read that the harnesses are not great in case of an impact, but I can't see that,
    provided you keep the speed down (I try not to go above 30kmph with the trailer).
     
  10. In article <[email protected]>, "Paul - xxx"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Decathlon (Giltbrook, near Nottingham, just round the corner from my house) had some cycle trailers
    >in. French (obviously) made, but cheap and looking very similar to the pages you posted. ISTR about
    >£200 ish .. though may be waaay wrong on the price.

    Oooh. I'll have a look on the web cos we could get one out there maybe if it was cheaper.

    Ta

    Becka
     
  11. Tony R

    Tony R Guest

    "Becka Currant" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:uEA%[email protected]...
    > After booking our holiday to France (yippee!) thoughts have now turned to
    how
    > we will transport baby Becka whilst cycling.
    >
    > I really, really like the look of these:
    >
    > http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html

    Hi Becka, like Rory I have a Legerro Classico which has seen service every school day since last
    February. It only does short trips (c. 8 miles a day) with a couple of short sharp hills. I can
    certainly vouch for its solid/safe feel and it's wearing well. It's survived the worst weather
    Dublin can throw at it, including one day in November that dropped the whole month's average
    rainfall in one day - sprogs arrived dry and warm - I didn't. Like Chris French I can recommend the
    Weber hitch. It's reassuringly solid, robust and easy to use. Of course, I haven't used any other
    trailers so my view is limited. One thing I would say though is that in my case my perceptions
    altered somewhat once I was actually using the trailer. Suddenly features I'd agonised over
    (covertible to stroller/ how quickly it folds down etc) became far less important than issues that
    might affect my kids - eg. how does it handle in traffic? Is it weatherproof? If I roll it is there
    any protection? and so on. With this in mind I'd say go for the very best one you can afford. The
    roads round here are often poorly surfaced and my only niggle with the Legerro is it has no
    suspension at all. I could have forked out a £100 or so extra for the Ritschie (which has some sort
    of suspension ). At the time (and now) that was a lot of money to justify but in retrospect it was
    nothing compared to the kids' comfort, especially when spread over the trailer's lifespan. Hope this
    helps. Tony R
     
  12. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, Becka Currant
    <[email protected]> writes
    >In article <[email protected]>, chris French <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>>I really, really like the look of these:
    >>>
    >>>http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html
    >
    >
    >>I don't actually use the jogger/push chair conversion, but bear in mind it will be rather bulkier
    >>than a normal single pushchair.
    >
    >Originally when we booked the holiday we didn't think we'd even be able to get the pushchair bit of
    >the travel system into the car and would therefore be totally relying on a sling to transport the
    >baby around. I've got a second hand wilkinet coming to see if I like it but a lot of that will have
    >to wait until the baby is born and we see what we/it likes. The flexibility of being able to
    >convert the trailer would give us the option of being able to push baby round if/when we need to
    >and also give us somewhere to stuff our kit if we've cycled to do some sighseeing (i.e. going into
    >Lourdes etc) and don't want to leave everything unattended.
    >
    h sure, I wasn't saying that it wouldn't be useful. I have considered it but haven't had a a great
    need for it really yet so as to justify the extra cost, but I can imagine doing so in the future.
    Also Elinor is a lot older, with a < 6 month old it will probably be more useful.

    >
    >>It can be hard to get and see different trailers in the flesh, if you want to see ours you are
    >>welcome to come over and have a look.
    >
    >That would be fab, thank you. I'll leave taking you up on your offer until the baby has arrived but
    >really appreciate it.
    >
    Hey, we're cyclists, we're friendly, helpful sorts !:)

    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  13. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, Becka Currant
    <[email protected]> writes
    >In article <[email protected]>, [email protected]
    >(PRIORPARK17) wrote:
    >>I have a burley, and the key features on a trailer as I see it are: frame surrounds the wheels so
    >>If you hit a bollard or a tree it cannot get between the wheel and the trailer and have you off. I
    >>like the look of the Chauffeur CTS on http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.htm.
    >
    >Thanks, and a very good point about the frame surrounds.

    It is indeed, as when manoeuvring through gaps etc. the is bit can quite easily catch.

    > I'll have a look at the burleys.
    >
    I can't remember why I didn't by a burley now, I think for one they worked out a bit more expensive.
    Good and reliable though.
    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  14. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, Rory <[email protected]> writes
    >[email protected] (Becka Currant) wrote in message
    > news:<uEA%[email protected]>...
    >> After booking our holiday to France (yippee!) thoughts have now turned to how we will transport
    >> baby Becka whilst cycling. When we go at the beginning of Sept the child will be about 5 1/2
    >> months old. We're going to the Pyrenees (and get to see a couple of stages of the Vuelta, double
    >> yippee!).
    >>
    >> I really, really like the look of these:
    >>
    >> http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html
    >
    >Of those, I think the Ritschie 2 is the best.

    It probably is, which is reflected in the price..... And it's rather heavy too, though all things
    considered what's a couple of extra kilo's.

    > It was supposed to be available with "auflaufbremsen" (run-out brakes, or Pomme-de-terre au
    > Gratin brakes?) which stop the trailer overtaking the tractor unit (that's you), but they don't
    > seem to be available yet. Seems like a good idea though, but I've not had a problem and I do a
    > lot of ups and downs.
    >
    I've not had a problem yet, and with my experience of load trailers I would say that for the sort of
    load we are talking (say up to 50Kg) then decent brake son the tower are ok, experience with my
    Columbus of bigger loads (80+ kg) would suggests that then it would become more useful (though it
    would be nice anyway)

    >Me, I've a Leggero Classico (Swiss), which is pretty good,

    That was near the top of my list as well.
    >
    >In general, I'm convinced that the trailer is a pretty safe option, it stands out in traffic (I've
    >good lights on it at night), in case of the bike going down, the trailer stays upright and is
    >stopped by the bike (on its side!). In case of a accident in traffic, a German insurance company's
    >tests show it get pushed out of the way rather than crush (I've no desire to test this myself).

    I can imagine that, though looking at the piccies of the trailer that was hit by that idiot it's
    looking pretty well semi crushed. That the girl survived speak volumes for the design and safety of
    these trailers.

    > I have read that the harnesses are not great in case of an impact, but I can't see that, provided
    > you keep the speed down (I try not to go above 30kmph with the trailer).

    I would think that in the sorts of situations required in a trailer they do the job ok. which is
    basically to hold the child in the trailer. Stop-dead sort of collisions, where the child is thrown
    forward, where the thickness of the straps and padding is more important don't seem that likely.

    But yes, I tend to keep the speed down as well (only a concern on downhill stretches though)

    A couple of trailer related thoughts - a bike stand is useful on the towing bike as when you park up
    it is often hard to arrange things to have something to rest the bike against. One mounted at the
    rear hub on the stays works well (ESGE do one, and you can get a Weber hitch fitting on one as well)

    I've noticed that the mudgaurd on my tower isn't quite long enough and throws spray up a bit onto
    the trailer. Not a problem in that the cover is over it, but it is making it rather dirty, look like
    I need to make an extension.
    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  15. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Mon, 03 Feb 2003 20:52:51 GMT someone who may be
    [email protected] (Becka Currant) wrote this:-

    >After booking our holiday to France (yippee!) thoughts have now turned to how we will transport
    >baby Becka whilst cycling.

    A to B Magazine reviewed various options a couple of years or so ago. They have a back issue service
    and an index on their web site. They decided on the Burley Solo from memory.

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  16. I think we've pretty much decided to get a 1-child trailer. The main reason for this is that the
    main thing we'd use it for is simply getting the kid around, to shopping trips, day care, etc, and
    our standard route into town involves going along a bike path that has bollards cleverly placed such
    that there's a 78cm gap between them. This rules out most 2-child trailers. Evidently some will fit,
    just barely, but since this trip will be such a common trip I want something that will fit though
    painlessly.

    [email protected] (Becka Currant) wrote
    > I really, really like the look of these:
    >
    > http://www.twoplustwo.uk.com/ctrailers/index.html

    I also really like the look of the Chariot 1-child trailers (Cheetah or Cougar). What I like
    about them is that can easily converted to strollers or joggers, thus saving the expense of
    buying one of those. I have been told that your standard stroller or pram is really not up to
    much, and if you want to take your kiddie on long walks, it's worth getting a proper, robust,
    3-wheeled jogging trailer.

    However, we haven't completely ruled out the Burley 1-child trailer, the Solo. We will have a good
    look at them both this weekend, as we wander up to Little Thetford (about 10 miles north of
    Cambridge) to visit Kevin at D.Tek.

    We eventually want to have two kids, but we figure that when #2 comes along, we can deal with that
    then, by getting a second-hand two-child trailer, or putting a child seat on a trike of some kind.

    -Myra
     
  17. Priorpark17

    Priorpark17 Guest

    <<I can't remember why I didn't by a burley now, I think for one they worked out a bit more
    expensive. Good and reliable though>>

    Yes, but they hold their resale value better
     
  18. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, Myra VanInwegen
    <[email protected]> writes
    >
    >I also really like the look of the Chariot 1-child trailers (Cheetah or Cougar). What I like
    >about them is that can easily converted to strollers or joggers, thus saving the expense of
    >buying one of those. I have been told that your standard stroller or pram is really not up to
    >much, and if you want to take your kiddie on long walks, it's worth getting a proper, robust,
    >3-wheeled jogging trailer.
    >
    For longer walks I use the backpack carrier.

    Certainly a 3 wheel jogging type buggy is easier to push than a normal type buggy presumably because
    of the better wheels, decent bearing etc. And they deal with rough paths, grassland much better as
    well because of the bigger wheels.

    #But I wouldn't want to have one a sole buggy, the length and the normally fixed front wheel makes
    for more awkward manoeuvring, a bulkier/heavier package for buses, boots of cars etc.

    then again, lots of us seem to end up with at least two buggies/pushacirs anyway.
    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  19. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, PRIORPARK17
    <[email protected]> writes
    ><<I can't remember why I didn't by a burley now, I think for one they worked out a bit more
    >expensive. Good and reliable though>>
    >
    >Yes, but they hold their resale value better

    Yes. quite likely, they are good trailers and a strong brand. TBH though, if the trailer has been
    through a few kids (hopefully) I don't suppose the difference would be massive. Anyway, price was
    only one of the factors, though resale value wasn't - there were enough things to consider without
    that imponderable as well.
    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  20. Rory

    Rory Guest

    [email protected] (Myra VanInwegen) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > I think we've pretty much decided to get a 1-child trailer. The main reason for this is that the
    > main thing we'd use it for is simply getting the kid around, to shopping trips, day care, etc, and
    > our standard route into town involves going along a bike path that has bollards cleverly placed
    > such that there's a 78cm gap between them. This rules out most 2-child trailers. Evidently some
    > will fit, just barely, but since this trip will be such a common trip I want something that will
    > fit though painlessly.

    It can be tight enough between some bollards alright - you can usually get through, but it pays to
    stop and line-up slowly (DAMHIK...etc).

    I saw a "single track" child trailer in a German magazine at the weekend, with only one wheel and
    full sus - that might be a good option for one kid (less friction, width, etc.). I'll dig it out and
    look it up on the web if anyone is interested.
     
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