9 February 2008

We’re expecting …

Posted by todd under: Riding with children .

Not that kind of expecting! (Although we have done a good bit of that around here over the past 8 years or).

Nope, we’re expecting a brand-spanking-new-to-us Burley D’Lite bike trailer, purchased in an eBay auction by yours truly on Friday.

Used Burley D’Lite bicycle trailerI have had a couple of cheap-model trailers with unacceptable designs over the years — notably some durable but (to me) untrustworthy InStep models.

The newer ones might be better, but ours attached to the bike with a metal part that had to go between the rear wheel’s quick-release and the frame. I did not care for that set-up because it could scratch the frame; because you had this ugly metal part always hanging off the dropout; and because it just didn’t look very sturdy. Plus, the trailers were hard plastic inside — quite uncomfortable, unless the kids had blankets to sit on. Still, we put a lot of miles on them.

The D’Lite has an excellent reputation (this review is typical), such that used ones routinely fetch more than $175 in auctions. (They are $450 or so new.) This one was “buy it now” for $150, with $55 shipping (GULP! Yes — I know.) So I am fairly happy with the deal.

Very soon, Maryboo (3) and her 1-year-old brother Stonewall will be happily joining in family rides, I trust. I can’t wait!

I will let you know how it rides.

4 Comments so far...

John Says:

11 February 2008 at 11:54 am.

I have great memories of riding with tagging along. Now that they are grown, they ride with me tagging along. It’s much better being the tag along than the in charge guy.

BTW I’m lukewarm on helmets.

The tag-along guy — I guess I’m looking forward to seeing my boys develop to this point. When you get the chance, I’d like to hear you elaborate on the lukewarm on helmets part. -6-

Jason Nunemaker Says:

11 February 2008 at 8:48 pm.

Todd, I look forward to your reports, and the reviews of your passengers. No tiny travelers here, but I’m convinced that Nephew Wilson will be seeing a trailer (most likely a Burley) from his Uncle Jason and Aunt Carla in the not-so-distant future. (Ulterior motive: I really just want to shop for one of those tiny helmets!)

How old and/or big were your kids when you felt they were ready for trailering?


Jason, nice to hear from you … I felt they were ready for trailering as soon as they could control their heads. G might have persuaded me to wait a little longer than that, I honestly can’t remember. But the first two, anyway, were pretty small when we started trailering. I hope you get to do this, it is a real gas. -6-

Phil J Pollan Says:

15 February 2008 at 3:10 pm.

I looked at your website and it helped convince me to buy a Breezer. Wound up buying two, one for me and one for my wife.

I have been riding it only two days but really like this bike. I did not realize that biking would be so much fun.

You have inspired me, together with others on the web, to commute to work. I will probably start next week.

Phil, thanks for the kind words. I am glad you have decided to take the plunge. It is a great decision that will carry many benefits, tangible and intangible. And also I think you made a good move getting the Breezer — it is the best commuting bike on the market in the USA. Please comment again after you have been commuting for a while and let us know how it is going!

Phil J Pollan Says:

2 June 2008 at 2:38 pm.

2 June 08 Update. Averaging losing one pound a month. My commute is 7 miles round trip and I am able to do it 2 or three times a week. While that is not a particularly great weight loss, over a year that would be 12 pounds, which wouldn’t be bad. I currently weigh 207, down from about 210 or more. My goal is to eventually get to 185 or even to 175. (I graduated from high school at 155, so I have some room to improve.)

I am enjoying the bike commute even more now. My legs are stronger as is to be expected. My wife and I bike sometimes in the evening on a bike path near our home, so we can exercise together. We have both really enjoyed the Breezers.

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About the picture atop the page

Yes, that's me, Todd Van Campen. No, I'm not wearing a helmet. Yes, I usually wear one, so please don't scold! Seriously, I endorse wearing a helmet! Pinky swear! In fact, I almost ALWAYS wear one (while riding a bike anyway). (On the other hand, if YOU don't want to wear a helmet, I have no problem with it.) I don't remember what happened on this particular day. Fortunately for all of us it makes for a less-nerdly picture. My exceptionally talented professional photographer friend Charles Bertram took this photo.



Art for art’s sake

I asked my 6-year-old son, Caleb, an avid bicyclist and artist, to draw a bike for me. I think he did a great job!




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