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Thread: Building a Bicycle Trailer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Building a Bicycle Trailer

    As I mentioned in >> THIS << thread about restoring my old MT bike, I want to build a bicycle trailer for doing my daily deliveries around the area.

    I've done a bit or research on this, here is part of what I found.....

    This is a trailer that is being built and sold here in Japan.

    >> Trailer on the move <<

    >> How It Hitches <<

    And I found this website, they sell the trailers ready to go for about $300.....

    >> Bicycle Trailer <<

    Overall, there is nothing wrong with that trailer, the size is not what I want, I have very specific dimensions I need to fit my cases of beer etc.
    I do like his hitch and we contacted him about just buying that part, but he would not sell it, so I found the gimble or pivot part for sale for about $10, so I guess I'll just fabricate the rest.

    Here in Tokyo, we have seen a lot of the courier guys now using electric bikes with trailers to do parcel deliveries.......
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    I also found a lot of information online >> HERE << about stability and hitch location.

    I think I will have the hitch on the seat post, and I'll build the trailer bed fairly low to the ground, maybe 4" or so off the deck, well below the axle of the wheels. I've also decided to use regular 26" wheels, I'm told that they will give me much less rolling resistance, and I can get them with tire and tubes for free, when my local neighbourhood bicycle shop takes an old bike when a customer is buying a new bike.

    I'm trying to make a SU drawing, but I'm having troubles, I'm not very good at SU
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  2. #2
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    Looks like it will be an interesting project Stu. How much weight can one expect to load and pull on a bicycle trailer?

    Those electric bikes look interesting as well. Are they regenerative (recharge the battery) as one is pedaling or coasting?
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darren Wright View Post
    Looks like it will be an interesting project Stu. How much weight can one expect to load and pull on a bicycle trailer?
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Depends on how low a gear you have and how big your legs are I guess

    Quote Originally Posted by Darren Wright
    Those electric bikes look interesting as well. Are they regenerative (recharge the battery) as one is pedaling or coasting?
    I honestly do not know
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
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    Depends on how low a gear you have and how big your legs are I guess
    When I was pulling this one
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    loaded with 65 lbs of dead weight
    I hardly even knew it was there on level ground.
    Host of the 2017 Family Woodworking Gathering - Sunken Wood

    “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk
    www.wrworkshop.com

  5. #5
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    Mmmmmh Stu now you have me thinking. This would really give me a purpose to haul my bike out and get some exercise. Just thinking aloud but i do the grocery shopping in our house and my "going green" contribution could be going to get the groceries using something like a trailer.

    I will have to talk to my buddy with the welder. I think the idea of getting a couple of forks from old bikes and using their front wheel and fork for the rear is a good idea i saw on the website you linked to.

    There are many bikes that size that are simply put out for the garbage around here when the kids get too big for them. I am going to keep my eye open. This will be an interesting thread to follow. Way to go. I like the way you get round to building things. Really cool idea.
    cheers

  6. #6
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    Stu do you have a TIG welder? Most of the new bikes are AL or some weird metal conglomeration that is lighter and stronger pound for pound than mild steel. Which is fine until you try to join them utilizing a stick or MIG welder without the correct filler rod. Or are you going to forgo weight for strength and ease of building and use 1/2" square tubing for your trailer frame?
    Jon

    God and family, the rest is icing on the cake. I'm so far behind, I think I'm in first place!

    Host of the 2015 FAMILY WOODWORKING GATHERING

  7. #7
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    No TIG, I wish I had one, but it has been YEARS since I TIG welded, and that is a VERY perishable skill set

    It will all be fairly thin walled square tubing, 1" square and smaller, all MIG welded, I know I can do a decent job on that.
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  8. #8
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    OK, my Sketch up skills are slowly improving, but this is a basic concept.......

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    I did NOT draw them wheels, they were drawn by someone named Ben Wood, I modified the wheels slightly, took off the brake disk, but that is similar to the wheels I'll have, well mine will be a bit thinner and a much more smooth tread on the tires.

    I've got a lot more head scratching and SU work to do, but it is coming along.

    The tubing is all 1" square in this model, except for the ones no the very bottom, I'm thinking I'll put light expanded mesh in the frame work, dunno yet really, still at the "Huh?" stage
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan Shively View Post
    Stu do you have a TIG welder? Most of the new bikes are AL or some weird metal conglomeration that is lighter and stronger pound for pound than mild steel. Which is fine until you try to join them utilizing a stick or MIG welder without the correct filler rod. Or are you going to forgo weight for strength and ease of building and use 1/2" square tubing for your trailer frame?
    Actually, most cheap bikes are made of mild steel - and fairly thick stuff, at that. You're probably best using parts of Wal-Mart Huffys and the like.

  10. #10
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    Nov 2006
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    Hey Stu. Steve Ash heard you were looking to upgrade your delivery bike and he threw this together for you.
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    Host of the 2017 Family Woodworking Gathering - Sunken Wood

    “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk
    www.wrworkshop.com

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