Posts Tagged ‘bike trailer’

Bike Trailers for the Low-Tech

October 14, 2010

Maya Cycle's trailer turns into a wheelbarrow.

One of these days — when bikes rule the roads once again — we will find bike trailers indispensable, like the covered wagon. For Maya Cycle and Free Parable Design, that day can’t come too soon.

I saw their promising trailers at Interbike Las Vegas. I preface this review by saying I do not own a trailer, but wish I did. It can be useful for carrying large loads, like groceries, or for the bike camping tourist.

Maya Cycle a wheelbarrow
Maya Cycle offers a 16-inch single-wheel-style trailer. What I like about it is that it turns it into a wheelbarrow.

The trailer latches to solid or quick-release axles and weighs in at 13 pounds. The 16-inch tube tire is readily available. I’m told that a larger wheel is preferable because the tires last longer. It looks like a well-thought-out unit.

Free Parable T1
The Free Parable T1 is a cleverly designed two-wheel trailer (there’s also a single-wheel, the T2) that morphs into a piece of luggage. Its designer, Jung-Hui Weng, grew up in Taiwan and enjoyed riding his mountain bike to Chaishan Nature Park, where monkeys frolic. If you don’t believe me, just check out this website.

Jung-Hui Weng shows his low-tech trailer and water bottle cages.

Weng and co-worker Hwai Chen, based in San Jose, Calif., embrace the idea of “low-tech,” which is all about finding simple, elegant “cave man” solutions. That helps explain their whimsical logo.

Their trailer weighs in at 14 pounds and can carry about 66 pounds, same as the Maya Cycle. The Free Parable website shows how the trailer converts to a piece of luggage, complete with a bag cover. Neat.

Free Parable also has an unconventional water bottle cage, which, while solving one problem, creates another. The Monkii cage uses a Velcro strap, meaning it can accommodate any size water bottle. Clever. However, that means you need to stop to take a drink. That’s OK for some riders.

You can undo the Velcro to get to the bottle, or you can easily remove the bottle cage, which snaps into the bike frame mount. The Monkii cage can also serve as a tool bag or a waterproof bag. The Free Parable Design website has all the details.

Velcro becomes a low-tech solution for a water bottle cage.


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