Frustrated with how klunky and unwieldy trailers could be, I owned a trailer but found I used it only now and then.
After my partner and I tried unsuccessfully to have a child and ultimately stopped trying, I realized I no longer wanted to look at the trailer hanging in the shed.
I remembered that I had an old ATB frame sitting unutilized, so I sold the trailer and bought an Xtracycle kit. I built up the longbike in early May of this year and have used it more times in four months than I used the trailer in four years.
- Frame: mid-80’s Cycle Pro “Skyline”
- Wheels: double-wall rims, cassette rear hub (a must for this bike), recently added Schwalbe Marathon Tires.
- Handlebars: Nitto “North Road” with cork grips and thumb shifters.
- Saddle: Brooks Flyer
I use my longbike on an average of one to three times a week, depending on the weather and the distance. (Portland’s transit will not allow it on the bus rack or on the light-rail trains because they say it’s too long, so I have to commit to ride both ways when I use it.) I especially enjoy riding with my partner to the farmers’ markets and bringing home all the produce on my bike while my partner rides unencumbered.
Recent outings included carrying three lawn chairs and a picnic basket for our ride to a concert in downtown Portland, and an especially memorable ride home with a free, 6-foot folding ladder my business didn’t need anymore (see pix). —Beth
[Visit Beth’s blog: bikelovejones —ed.]