Re: [CF] [Fwd: Re: [BOB] Bilenky Cargo Bike]
- Yeah, besides commercial users, I don't see a lot of use of the Bilenky
cargo bike for the average cyclist (even the carfree ones). But I
really like neat designs like this and the Long Haul and Dan's SUV. And
I don't know, if I had the money and space I might opt for a heavier
duty cargo bike.
Right now, my only use for a trailer is when I go drop off recycling (I
just let it build and build until I can't stand it). Then I transport
it with a Bob trailer that I bought used. For groceries, I just use
large, top-loading panniers and go once a week (or I walk across the
street to the neighborhood grocery store). I have seen a couple of
Xtracycle Free Radicals around Lincoln though.
But I love looking at cargo bikes, especially when they're hauling
something. The pictures on Dan's site and the Bikes at Work site are
always fun to look at.
I'm finishing my dissertation and will defend it this October. I have
plans of staying in academia but sometimes I dream about starting a
bicycle delivery service. I know it wouldn't be a walk in the park.
But sometimes I want to do something else besides sitting in a
windowless basement room staring at a computer screen and puzzling over
De Clarke wrote:
>nice design (I discovered from riding my brompton that
>it can be pleasant to have cargo front-mounted on the
>frame -- very different from handlebar baskets which
>are hard to love).
>it's pricey though and I think I can carry much bigger
>stuff on my (cheaper) Xtracycle Free Radical (the Frankenbike).
>btw I don't own stock in Xtracycle or work for them or anything
>like that. I just like the bike. it's a workhorse; and even
>combined with a good ($500 or so) used frame, total cost is
>less than half of a Long Haul or even the Bilenky. if I hauled
>cargo for a living I'd probably invest in the purpose-built
>bike plus a mega-trailer, but as a mere homeowner, etc. I find
>the FR adequate for just about every hauling job...
- I haven't tried any of these bikes and I haven't seen them "live" either.
But I think each of these cargo bikes or bikes + trailers are ideal under
The Bilenki cargo bike seems to me like a really good design... but too much
of a good thing for most people. I might be a great design for a person
carrying their own "house" around the world for a year, but then, I'm not
sure I would bring such a strange design to China or Russia, for example.
Carrying heavy loads on the bike itself seems more appealing than carrying
them on an attachment, but a 3-wheeler might be better for really heavy loads.
For most people, I think the real choice is between the Xtracycle and a
two-wheel trailer. I think the Xtracycle has an advantage for heavy loads,
while a two-wheel trailer is best for bulky loads. Ultimately, the Xtracycle
is limited by the bulkiness of the load, while a trailer is limited by its
own flexibility, as well as the flexibility of the attachment and of the
I routinely use a trailercycle and a child trailer. The trailer is attached
to the bike (or trailercycle) via the left chainstay; when the load is more
than 25 kg (55 lb -- a full load of grocery, for example), I definitely feel
it "waving" across potholes and the like. An attachment on the left
chainstay *and seatstay* (like the Burley and other more modern trailers)
diminish that problem, but I would definitely need a trailer with a more
robust structure to pull, say 100 or 150 kg. Likewise, a racing bike can't
pull comfortably a heavy trailer: too much flex in the frame.
There still is a problem with pulling a trailer: winter. I normally cycle
throughout Winter on two knobby tires. There might be one or two occasions
where a front studded tire might be a bit better, and there are places where
it would almost be essential. However, I never felt I needed more
traction... except when I was pulling my 2 daughters. So, when one pulls a
heavy load in a trailer, unless there is a bit of extra tongue weight, loss
of traction is definitely a concern.
Michel Gagnon -- mailto:michelgagnon@...
Montréal (Québec, Canada)