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Trailer towing bike question.(4 posts)

Trailer towing bike question.the bull
Aug 13, 2003 4:32 PM
I am building a second bike for rough weather and back up.
My wife was giving me a hard time then it came to me!
I am going to get a trailer soon and tow ana(my daugter)around.
Then I realized I did not want to use my ti/record steed to do this task.
I am going to build up a steel bike.I decided to go with veloce and now I am thinking of getting a triple.I always have ridden small gears even in the back.I never had a triple.I climbed mountians out west never even thouht of needing a easier gear.
So here is the Question:
When towing a trailer should I have a triple?
What gearing should I get?
It seems like it would be nice to have.
Do you Dads out there have triples when towing kids up hills?
Should I get a bigger cassette and keep the double.
I am a good climber.
A bunch of suggestionsTWD
Aug 13, 2003 6:11 PM
Ok where to start.

Yes you will need a triple ring for sure, no matter where you live or how strong you are. The reason is because this will be the clincher of the sales pitch to the wife for justifying the new bike.

Practice these words...."Honey, I need this new bike so that I can spend quality time with our daughter. I need a triple ring in order to have easy enough gears to pull the extra weight up hills. Using my current bike with harder gears could ruin my knees, and I would rather pay for our daughter's college than knee surgury. I can't put a triple ring on my current bike because it would cost way too much to convert and the guys will laugh at me for having a triple ring." Keep laying it on thick until she cracks under the pressure and lets you have the bike.

So, yeah, you need a triple ring. Besides that triple rings are nice for towing when it gets hilly. I live out west and do lots of long and steep climbs while towing my son in the trailer, and the triple ring is nice to have.

The exact gearing you need will depend upon how long/steep the climbs are, how strong you are, and what cadence you want to run. I'd say a road triple setup with a 12-25 cassette will probably get you in the ballpark if you aren't contending with mountains. I run easier gearing than that, but I tow with my cross bike and usually on steep fire road climbs.

That brings me my next question. Have you considered getting a cross bike instead of another roadie? Cross bikes are extremely versatile, especially if you get a bike with rack and fender mounts. Having the extra room for larger tires gives you all sorts of options. With the right tires you can go just about anywhere, not mention cross racing is a blast.
I got a frame for free.the bull
Aug 13, 2003 6:48 PM
It is a steel frame and I will use that.
It has an aluminum fork(1"threaded) and headset and handle bars.All I need now is the group and wheels.I can get a complete Campy Veloce 9 speed group and wheels(Fir net 97 rims) for $475 through repartocorse. The rims are double wall steel.This seems like the most bang for the buck! My choices for the cassette are: 12/23 13/23
13/26 13/28.So I am thinking 13/26 I guess!
Well, this probably isn't what you want to hear but . . .djg
Aug 14, 2003 6:29 AM
just buy the darn trailer and start towing it around from time to time with the bike you have. Decent trailer clamps will not crush your ti frame unless you do something really twisted with the clamp. I've used mine on carbon and ti and it's never made a scratch.

As for gearing: If you've got hills around you might invest in a basic rear wheel to support a bigger cogset (say a 13-29 if ou're running campag or a 27 if you're running shimano) (or just swap cassettes), but a couple extra teeth in back should get you up most things and I just wouldn't contemplate epic climbs with a trailer--in part because I don't take my trailer on the open road and in part because downhill handling, although fine at conservative speeds, is not good enough that I'd want to be screaming around corners at high speed with my kid in the back. And then there's the time thing. Just see what you and your daughter enjoy doing. My older daughter loved riding in the trailer but just for a while. I'd say an hour was a happy excursion--all day in the mountains was out of the question. Gonna start with the little ones now and I don't expect things to be different.

So my advice is: get a slightly bigger cassette, an easy-to-open water bottle in your daughter's favorite color, her favorite color helmet, and some snacks.

I mean, by all means by another bike if you want and can afford it. I'm building up a used Serotta frame myself at the moment and it won't be my only bike. But you don't need it for the project of towing a trailer.