Saturday, February 19, 2011

Bike Teamster

AOSOM Bike Trailer

Bike Teamster

Listen.   When you give up your car, it's not so you can depend on other people to cart you and your junk around.  You either figure out a way to do what you want to do by not needing a car, borrow a car occasionally, or even rent one.

But the pile of recyclables next to the house, the variety of things I can now cook with mustard as well as the number of PB&J sandwiches I've made with bread heels, and the fact that my public address (PA) system wallowed in some friend's house because I couldn't get it to my standing monthly gig all testify to the fact that I still have some things to "work out." 

I shopped around locally.  I did.  But all the local bike shops got their bike trailers from Burley or BOB and they weren't cheap.   So after resigning myself spending upwards of $200, I just had to narrow it down to what brand.

Strangely if you shop long enough, something usually gives, and something did.  What it was a bike trailer company out of Oregon and what it cost was $100.   I was in.   Even if wasn't as well built as Burley or BOB, it was half the price and it held up to 180lbs.    

After we got it, we assured ourselves that it would work fine for groceries, then bought a couple of trailer hitches so we could outfit the other bikes.  And then the day came when I'd have to really test it, by carting the PA system.

Yesterday was that day.   And I loaded it down with a mike stand, a bag of cords, the small head, and a speaker.  The trailer handled it with aplomb.   After carting it up to the college, I realized I grabbed the wrong type of cord and came back for that and the other speaker.   Two trips and a complete PA setup later and I've made a few simple observations:

1)   Be strategic about how you pack it.   If you're going to have the mike stands stick out the side, know how wide you are. You are already wider than normal just because of the trailer.   Still thinking I won't use more than one speaker most of the time.

2) Save your knees and use a bike with more than one gear.   I wasn't going very far, but I already know that my mountain bike, its disc brakes and 24 gears is way more of a teamster rig than my single speed fixie.   

and 3) Park close to where you are unloading the trailer.   I was, frankly, more tired as a result of carting the PA from the bike rack to the space than I was from riding it there.

So if you see me carting a PA on my bike, give me a honk.  I'm just a teamster on a bike.

1 comment:

  1. I wouldn't call it "wallowing," but I could tell that the PA didn't feel quite at home. Besides, what are friends' dining rooms for?