- Genius or utter asshattery?
I’ve just stumbled across the Trax MTB (actually posted up by Hope of all people). Essentially it’s a mini spool washing line that you attach to your seat tube allowing you to draw out a Kevlar cable to loop over another bike (looking all the world like a piece of string with a loop on the end); the blurb states:
The most comfortable, efficient and practical system to join 2 normal bicycles into a tandem.
Venture yourself to ride some routes that you wouldn’t never imagine with your children, nephews/nieces, grandchildren, friends…
TRAX opens endless possibilities to share the cycling without barriers!
The promotional video shows a chap guide a young lad over trails with said device loosely looped over his stem cap & spacer.
Clearly this offers no real tandem like control or safety and chappy at the front is most likely oblivious as to whether laddo has fallen off or run into a tree (at least until the spool runs out).
The Trax is also shown as a device to allow an emergency tow back home to another, broken, bike and for climbing assistance.
I’m happy to consign it to the ‘bonkers’ (and potentially very unsafe) bin but am I missing something?Posted 4 months agoandrewhMember
Hmm.Posted 4 months ago
Maybe emergancy tow, I’ve seen it done with some baler-twine we found at the roadside after a friend’s freewheel died a long way from home. Not sure I’d carry a specific thing for it though. Even less sure I’d fancy towing/being towed if I didn’t have to be.
What is the difference between twine and string anyway?CraigWMember
Or the Trail Gator, which is more like a metal towbar.Posted 4 months ago
I quite like that. I use a length of rope to tow my 3 year old on the uphills but it’s not the easiest thing for either of us to co-ordinate. I did lol at the ‘tool free installation’ though – I.e. zip ties (which magically trim themselves, apparently).
Obviously it’s not revolutionary but I could see it being useful.Posted 4 months ago
It’s just a Tow Whee alternative, looks good to me. Also, that video was just done by the Bike Dads page, its not a sales video (despite several people getting a weird arse on in the comments)
chappy at the front is most likely oblivious as to whether laddo has fallen off or run into a tree (at least until the spool runs out).
Does Dad have headphones in or something?Posted 4 months agodangeourbrainSubscriber
What is the difference between twine and string anyway?
As any farmer will tell you, you can fix anything with twine, so long as you’ve got the correct colour or in really bad cases combination of colours (blue for small but long term repairs, orange for large/structural jobs of short life, blue and orange for major long term building work). You can’t do this with string.Posted 4 months agoBezSubscriber
Yeah, the lack of elasticity is going to make life difficult, I suspect. Other than that, the idea of a compact emergency towing rope is kind of appealing.
Where they lose me is zip-typing it to the frame, because (a) that confines it to one bike and (b) zip ties are bullshit, and in 99.9% of cases anyone using them in an actual product has done so because they couldn’t be arsed to design a proper solution.
If it was a double-ended spool which could loop onto both bikes rather then being (spit) zip tied to one of them, so you could keep it in a bag and deploy it only when necessary, then maybe I’d be interested.Posted 4 months agofeedSubscriber
Well I just ordered one for when out cycling with 13 yo daughter who’s not that enthusiastic about cycling and consequently not very bike fit. Now I can give her a tow when she’s bunched!
If it works as well as I hope it’ll be well worth €38. Thanks for the post PJay.Posted 4 months agopdwMember
maybe this will recover the line quick enough if this happens but I cant see it.
Web site claims it will:
a mechanical system designed to pick it up back and to avoid any possibility to become tangled to the wheel.
I use a tow rope with our kids. Just a bit of rope and a shock cord tied to it every 20cm or so so that it keeps any slack out of the wheel.
Works well, and really does mean that you can take on some rides that you wouldn’t otherwise, but a bit of a faff to take on and off. That thing looks quite neat.Posted 4 months agoseosamh77Subscriber
2 roadie inner tubes tied together is the ticket, put 4 or 5 knots in them to keep it all together, seatpost to bars. I’ve used it to tow my mate about no worries, me on the ebike, him on normal bike.
Works perfectly, barely even notice him half the time.
But does require a modicum of co-ordination between you though, particular as the trial and gradient change. Need to communicate basically.Posted 4 months agonedrapierSubscriber
How long do you think you would/could tow someone if they really weren’t happy?
If you were being an arse, they’d jam their brakes to the point of locking up and you’d be stopping too pretty sharpish.
And if you could ride for half a mile without noticing your son, daughter, wife had binned it and you were dragging their empty bike behind you, then you’re very unlikely to be the target market for something so altruistic, or indeed have any of those people to ride with in the first place.Posted 4 months agomrhoppySubscriber
It’s a neat version of the retractable dog lead system that lots of us use. The principle is fine but I have a couple of issues with its implementation, it mounts too low so it’s a bit close to the wheel, it zip ties on so it’s hard to move about between bikes and there is no flex unless I’m missing something.Posted 4 months agosirromjSubscriber
As any farmer will tell you, you can fix anything with twine, so long as you’ve got the correct colour or in really bad cases combination of colours (blue for small but long term repairs, orange for large/structural jobs of short life, blue and orange for major long term building work). You can’t do this with string.
I can vouch for this 100%
But what about pink?Posted 4 months ago
The line is a couple of meters long, it’s hardly the 2km dog leads old ladies like. Video shows both people start pedalling and lead rider takes up the slack. Of course there’s nothing to stop you adding a short shock cord to the end if you wanted to.
Advantage of not having a dropper means I can mount that at a proper hight. Need to check the angles but should be fine.
And cmon, reusable zip ties have existed for decades.
Also of the mind to order one, seems like a good idea for longer rides or just generally steep bits without the annoyance of tubes hanging off the back. Nowt wrong with tubes mind but this looks neater. There is a French version that uses a fluoro line and a hook for the bars but they only ship to French speaking countries. Shame as it actually addresses the ziptie and height problems and is the same price.Posted 4 months ago
Got a link to the French one?
I’m still a couple of years from needing something like this, but i’m pretty certain one of the main places we’ll be heading is Glentress. If parking at the bottom there (which you would do given that the skills/jump area is heading there) then a full climb up could ruin a youngster pretty early on…..this way it’s my legs that will get ruined instead!Posted 4 months agoGarry_LagerSubscriber
Looks reasonable – places like Llandegla and Glentress have substantial forest road climbs up to the trails that are too much for young kids, something like this could make a big difference to the feasibility of the ride.
So no issues with the concept at all, just whether it’s offering much over a plain old rope I’m not as sure about. I’d imagine you could be quite creative with your hitches and wotnot to make a rope work quite well.Posted 4 months agopdwMember
Loop at one end goes over the nose of the saddle. You can then do a “friction hitch” at other end: loop the rope round the back of the steerer, then wrap around the stem and rope and then over to one of the handle bar grips. Takes no effort to hold the rope and it undoes itself if you let go.Posted 4 months agofranksinatraMember
Variations have been used for ages. I had a split 4m sling on my bike wrapped around the handlebars when my kids were little. If they got tired or grumpy it would go around their stem, looped once and they held it against their grip. When they had enough they would let go. Never had any problem with it and it meant happy kids and longer days out.
Adventure racers have been using the dog lead technique for years to help out slower riders or those suffering a bit. Massive psychological boost the the struggling person.
Don’t worry, its all good.Posted 4 months agodaheddMember
We had a trail gator and didn’t like it. Swapped to a Tow-Whee & its great. so handy for the uphills or long rides but if not needed itll stash in my back, over my shoulder or even into the pockets on the back of my Endura shorts.
You do still have to watch if the wee guy gets too close. It has got caught up in my rear cassette once or twice resulting in the canvas covering tearing but the rubber cord within is untouched, tough bugger of a thing.Posted 4 months ago
Well conclusion is it works exactly as advertised. Easy to use, stows away fine and no issues with the angle (I’m running mine at the top of a fixed post though). Post was below minimum size but a rubber shim from some mount or another sorted that. Zip ties were secure but had enough give to spin it round when mini squirrel caught a root.
My reusable ties were too wide to fit but hopefully I’ll find some narrower ones that will.
All in all I’d recommend it, sure other solutions are available but this is strictly minimum faff and easily stows away.Posted 4 months ago
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