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Show Us What You Are Hauling On Your Bike

 
pollinator
Posts: 176
Location: North Island, New Zealand
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Love everyone's bicycle setups! Hauling lots of stuff is great--makes me feel an accomplished cyclist, particularly when my co-workers make comments about how it was impossible to do X on a bike and I say I do it (or something more intensive) regularly.

I haven't taken pictures of too many silly things I've done (though 2.5m boards was certainly one of them--just strapped to the frame), but I did find an old photo of collecting cardboard boxes from local recycling skips for moving house. This setup got stares and people crossing the street to avoid me! It's still my personal best at 11 boxes (most don't fold down neatly--but they are quite strong).

Those of you who are hauling logs directly on your cycles--how do you balance it? I've been able to get smaller logs into my panniers (and always carry a saw with me just in case someone is pruning a tree on my commute), but things get really wobbly if I try to put wet, heavy logs of the size I'd like to collect (and the size some of you seem to be carrying!) onto my rack. I sometimes still do, but then I have to walk the bike home. Any tips, tricks and suggestions welcome!
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My frankenbike with a dodgy rack and patched panniers from the 1980's
My frankenbike with a dodgy rack and patched panniers from the 1980's
 
gardener
Posts: 1079
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M Broussard wrote:
Those of you who are hauling logs directly on your cycles--how do you balance it? I've been able to get smaller logs into my panniers (and always carry a saw with me just in case someone is pruning a tree on my commute), but things get really wobbly if I try to put wet, heavy logs of the size I'd like to collect (and the size some of you seem to be carrying!) onto my rack. I sometimes still do, but then I have to walk the bike home. Any tips, tricks and suggestions welcome!



I did just grab a heavy load of two long logs today to haul home.  First I will say that my back rack is pretty beefy.  Some of the racks I've had in the past certainly wouldn't have taken the weight!  Anyway, today as I started off with my load it initially felt pretty dodgy, like it was wiggling around too much.  So I got a third bungee cord and made sure the logs were strapped quite tightly in place.  Loads that wiggle make balancing harder.  If you can keep the weight of the load centered over the tire that helps too.  When I'm hauling logs that extend out several feet from my bike balance is also trickier.


Before I strap on a load I make sure the gears are set so I'll have easy enough pedaling on start up with a lot of weight.  I don't want to be fussing with gearing when trying to get going with a lot of weight.  I will sometimes also work to push off some with my feet to get a bit more initial forward momentum.  When going really slow, like when starting or stopping, it is much harder for me to balance it all.  When it motion I believe it is the gyroscopic action that makes it all easier.  With that in mind I should note that I'm doing most of my hauling in rural locations and along a trail where I don't have to start and stop much.  In fact usually once I have a log strapped on I don't stop until I get home.  If I were in an urban zone where I had to start and stop frequently the extreme loads might not be a good idea, at least not without having a true cargo bike, or trailer where balance isn't as much of an issue.

Part of the fun of this to me is the extra challenge of balance.  Thinking back I think the most challenging point for me is usually stopping or making sharp turns with big loads.  I have lost it turning into my driveway and when coming to a stop by the wood pile.  Thankfully my poor bike keeps chugging along once I unstrap the load and set it upright again.  I did break a plastic clip on my rear light today though.  Fortunately I was able to metalsmith up a replacement without too much effort.  
 
pollinator
Posts: 277
Location: Northern Ontario, Canada
149
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I'm not sure how I forgot to post in here when I first joined Permies but it looks like I did. I made this little cruiser bike I got for free into a longtail cargo bike with my stick welder. Most of these photos I rode around the block just to test the capacity of this thing. The last one was real world use while painting a house.

Here's the BB posting with a little more detail: https://permies.com/forums/posts/preList/97787/1187005#1187005

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BBQ time
BBQ time
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On a roll (lol)
On a roll (lol)
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Square tubing
Square tubing
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Can you do this with a car? I think NOT!
Can you do this with a car? I think NOT!
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Used to bring my grinder and extension cords, and safety stuff to clean up paint spillage at a job site
Used to bring my grinder and extension cords, and safety stuff to clean up paint spillage at a job site
 
gardener
Posts: 693
Location: Southern Germany
379
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Just went to the local Recycling Center (three minutes by bike) and was joined by an army of tough (tougher than me!) German ladies on their bikes.

One had two large bags of what seemed to be a chopped up Christmas tree, one had some sacks with hedge cuttings and the third (around 80 years old, I know most of them) had in addition to her large bag a huge bundle of 2 meter long rushes (reed). It was really a sight to see, should have taken a photo.
 
Posts: 109
Location: Berlin, Germany
30
kids foraging cooking food preservation bike building
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Last weekend I joined a spontaneous community garden project. We transformed a dirt patch next to a road into a (soon to be) bee paradise. This is how I left in the morning: tools, two buckets of compost, a bit water and some seeds! It ain't much...
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bike loaded with compost and garden tools
 
pollinator
Posts: 2463
Location: Canadian Prairies - Zone 3b
623
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Hi all, I want to improvise a hitch for a couple of old mountain bikes I have kicking around. The goal is to attach a 4-wheel garden cart and a 2-wheel John Deere 10 cu. ft. ATV cart. Use what you have, right?

My question: I want to keep the attachment low. I see some hitches that attach on one side and others that attach to both sides. Is there a difference in how they pull and handle? I have lots of hilly, uneven ground.
 
master gardener
Posts: 7166
Location: Pacific Wet Coast
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:Hi all, I want to improvise a hitch for a couple of old mountain bikes I have kicking around. The goal is to attach a 4-wheel garden cart and a 2-wheel John Deere 10 cu. ft. ATV cart. Use what you have, right?

My question: I want to keep the attachment low. I see some hitches that attach on one side and others that attach to both sides. Is there a difference in how they pull and handle? I have lots of hilly, uneven ground.

I pull a (very old) Burley bike trailer and it's attachment is right near the back wheel hub.

My friend was once trying to pull a Tag-along on a winding, hilly trail and it was attached at the seat stem and was a total PITA as it would get caught on the wheel depending on the angles and rotations.

My current Burley set-up is a ball hub and I recommend it for what you're describing, however you need a really good curve to the attachment bar/bars or you will find your turn radius will be limited. Mine only attaches to one side, so I'm fine turning left, but less so to the right. If you try to have attachment points on both sides, you may have to work around derailleurs. However, if you found a way to extend off both pipes that support the rear wheel in some way and then attached the existing tongue of the carts to that extension, it would help with both the angle and the rotation. However, we have a couple of things that attach with the sort of hitch which is two plate with a pin through it which I was told was typical of an ATV and we replaced both with hitches like you use on a car trailer that fit over a ball - on land where nothing's straight or level, I'd go with a ball any day!
 
Posts: 611
Location: St. George, UT. Zone 8a Dry/arid. 8" of rain in a good year.
178
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As a life long mountain biker I am a little saddened I haven't actually carried much on my bicycle.  I'll have to see if I can remedy that one of these days.  

Not sure if this counts, but it is me hauling my bicycle on my motorcycle.  Built a rack out of scrap ladder rack (used for low voltage wiring), and attached it to my motorcycle.  Used it a couple of dozen times.  It was pretty squirrely at freeway speed, but got lots of thumbs up.

IMG_20210602_144459741.jpg
motorcycle carrying a bicycle
 
Posts: 74
Location: eastern cape breton, 6b
33
cat fish ungarbage
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found this by accident - lol!

when i lived in ottawa i never had a drivers licence - i commuted by bike year round - i am in IT - federal  contracts - all government buildings have showers - best commuting method hands down.. i need to up my cardio so i am dusting off the bikes and will go striper fishing by bike this summer - need retraining though - yams rusty ;-)


when it was garbage day in my neighbourhood - i would take my homemade cart and cruise for valuables - you can haul quite a bit with a bike !!

thanks for the memories and a push to get back on the bike!!

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bike in snow loaded with bags
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bike loaded with bags towing full trailer
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bike trailer loaded with planters
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bike towing trailer and full load
 
M Broussard
pollinator
Posts: 176
Location: North Island, New Zealand
192
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This past week saw me carrying some delicate things and some long things! Brought a friend some baklava carefully wrapped and tied to the bike as well as a pomegranate seedling I grew. Given that these made it safely on the 20+km ride, I feel quite good about securing them!

The other fun one was replenishing our bamboo. It's invasive around here, and so there are plenty of locations it has invaded public areas--removing it is a good service. In this case, it was leaning over and blocking half the cycleway (and has been for months!) The path is now clear so there should be no more close calls between folks going opposite directions--and we have bamboo for gardening and experimenting with wooden guttering.

At 6 metres (19.6 ft) the longest bamboo pole is bigger than we could have transported by car!
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Secure baklava and seedling pomegranite sapling
Secure baklava and seedling pomegranite sapling
carrying-bike-bamboo.JPG
Bamboo -- up to 6 metres long!
Bamboo -- up to 6 metres long!
 
pollinator
Posts: 2431
Location: Meppel (Drenthe, the Netherlands)
761
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M Broussard wrote:This past week saw me carrying some delicate things and some long things! Brought a friend some baklava carefully wrapped and tied to the bike as well as a pomegranate seedling I grew. Given that these made it safely on the 20+km ride, I feel quite good about securing them!

The other fun one was replenishing our bamboo. It's invasive around here, and so there are plenty of locations it has invaded public areas--removing it is a good service. In this case, it was leaning over and blocking half the cycleway (and has been for months!) The path is now clear so there should be no more close calls between folks going opposite directions--and we have bamboo for gardening and experimenting with wooden guttering.

At 6 metres (19.6 ft) the longest bamboo pole is bigger than we could have transported by car!


Hi M. Did you get the BB for hauling a long load with your 'vehicle'? Exactly what you did, but then transporting long willow branches, was my plan for the BB.

Did the baklava arrive well? I would not dare that on the bicycle. Last week I had to bring a pie, cut in 8 pointed slices, to the other end of the neighbourhood. But I did not do it on my bicycle, I went walking.
 
M Broussard
pollinator
Posts: 176
Location: North Island, New Zealand
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Inge Leonora-den Ouden wrote:
Hi M. Did you get the BB for hauling a long load with your 'vehicle'? Exactly what you did, but then transporting long willow branches, was my plan for the BB.

Did the baklava arrive well? I would not dare that on the bicycle. Last week I had to bring a pie, cut in 8 pointed slices, to the other end of the neighbourhood. But I did not do it on my bicycle, I went walking.



The baklava arrived in perfect condition! I used the tiny jar in the picture to support the cover I put over it so nothing would get squished, then I wrapped it in a towel so that excessive jostling (it was a country road!) wouldn't damage the glass dish. I had a friend while doing my PhD who would carry cakes on the back of her bike--she shared some of the secrets to bike transport that she'd learned going to school in The Netherlands--very helpful!

Re: long load--is that the Homesteading badge? I hadn't thought about that as I don't own a car! Can we use bikes for that badge? I have carried long things before (e.g. branches, 3m long boards from a deconstructed pallet), so I'll try to remember to take the appropriate photos next time (don't have the before loading photo!
 
Inge Leonora-den Ouden
pollinator
Posts: 2431
Location: Meppel (Drenthe, the Netherlands)
761
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M Broussard wrote:Re: long load--is that the Homesteading badge? I hadn't thought about that as I don't own a car! Can we use bikes for that badge? I have carried long things before (e.g. branches, 3m long boards from a deconstructed pallet), so I'll try to remember to take the appropriate photos next time (don't have the before loading photo!


Yes, that's the BB I mean. It does not say your 'vehicle' has to be a car. So I thought it could be a bicycle ...
 
Posts: 25
Location: Portland OR, 8b
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Today I picked up some compost materials. My friend/neighbor lives about a half mile away, and has generously agreed to give me all of the plants she pulls from her garden instead of throwing them in the municipal compost collection bin. Keeps the soil fertility somewhat local to the neighborhood, at least. I estimate that this load contained 100-150lb of bolted cabbages and fava bean stalks.
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bike hauling trailer full of compost
 
"Don't believe every tiny ad you see on the internet. But this one is rock solid." - George Washington
"Permaculture Now! - Desert or Paradise?" movie by Sepp Holzer
https://permies.com/wiki/137395/Permaculture-Desert-Paradise-movie-Sepp
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