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Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 03 2019 10:27am
by kauaicycler
I was reading a post/article somewhere and the writer was talking about pulling a bob style trailer with a full suspension tadpole trike. The writer said that they talked with someone (I can't remember what their expertise was but the writer valued their opinion) about this and was told that a bob trailer would damage their suspension because of the twisting motion from the one wheeled trailer. They ended up going with a two wheel trailer. They said that the two wheel trailer had to be offset to the left to allow the bike to turn properly thus increased the overall width of the setup. It also meant that the rider had to track five wheel tracks for potholes and such.

I want to pull a bob trailer to reduce the width and tracking issues. I haven't decided on the trike yet and I'm willing to sacrifice full suspension to pull a bob trailer if necessary. Is full suspension out of the question?

Re: Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 03 2019 11:21am
by chvidgov.bc.ca
I have a Bob trailer that I use on my non-suspended tadpole trike for camping gear and it works very well in the forward direction, efficiency-wise. However, they do have a bad tendency to jacknife if you "back up the truck" which I imagine would be a problem for folding joints on a trike frame, possibly including suspension - I could imagine damaging your frame in certain backup scenarios with a loaded Bob. I presently am using a two wheeled trailer instead, sort of like a handtruck with a bin on it, with a long handle forward to a trailer hitch that I attach to my Arkel tailpack by simply lashing it on. It seems to be less problematic in this regard. I am using this unit... https://www.bellelli.com/en/products/b-tourist-0 Very similar to a Burley Travoy trailer.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEo9CMCSHnE

Re: Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 03 2019 11:55am
by kauaicycler
chvidgov.bc.ca wrote:
Jul 03 2019 11:21am
I have a Bob trailer that I use on my non-suspended tadpole trike for camping gear and it works very well in the forward direction, efficiency-wise. However, they do have a bad tendency to jacknife if you "back up the truck" which I imagine would be a problem for folding joints on a trike frame, possibly including suspension - I could imagine damaging your frame in certain backup scenarios with a loaded Bob.
I didn't think about the reverse issue. Good point!

Re: Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 03 2019 3:05pm
by Drunkskunk
I wouldn't worry about it much. While it's true a Bob trailer is going to put more stress on the suspension joints as it is relying on them to hold it's self upright, you will be putting far more stress on those joints when you corner. using a bob is only going to make it wear a little faster.

A suspension joint is a wear part. most good bikes have a rebuildable joint, but a few don't. If your suspension joint is just a bolt through a metal tab, you might want to skip the Bob unless you can cut and weld. Someday, you'll need to fix that joint.

Re: Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 03 2019 4:11pm
by Electric Earth
I don't have any personal experience to speak from, but I can't see how it would be a big deal, or any different than pulling a bob with any other full suspension bike. As mentioned, you'll have a little more wear than you would normally, but that's just how it goes. I'm Sure a bike carrying 50lbs of pannier gear has parts that wear out a little faster too, but that's just an aspect of carrying gear. Something is gonna wear out faster.

Re: Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 04 2019 7:41am
by kauaicycler
Drunkskunk wrote:
Jul 03 2019 3:05pm
A suspension joint is a wear part. most good bikes have a rebuildable joint, but a few don't. If your suspension joint is just a bolt through a metal tab, you might want to skip the Bob unless you can cut and weld. Someday, you'll need to fix that joint.
That makes sense and seems obvious now that I've read it. :)

Re: Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 04 2019 8:49am
by ScooterMan101
All the tadpole designs I have seen have what is called a " Unified Rear Triangle " , and with that kind of design the pivot points are well ahead of the axle .
So
The Rear seat and chain stays will flex a little, and thereby put less torque on the pivots than a Horst LInk Design.

Re: Full suspension tadpole trike pulling a bob trailer?

Posted: Jul 06 2019 9:00am
by kauaicycler
ScooterMan101 wrote:All the tadpole designs I have seen have what is called a " Unified Rear Triangle " , and with that kind of design the pivot points are well ahead of the axle .
So
The Rear seat and chain stays will flex a little, and thereby put less torque on the pivots than a Horst LInk Design.
Thanks!