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BOB trailer vs. Panniers?

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BOB trailer vs. Panniers?

Old 07-03-13, 11:12 AM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
At least it shows they considered the question may have came up before,
and upon finding an existing thread , did choose to add to it ,

rather than start as if they were the only one to ever have that thought.
Fietsbob - Might I say, while running the risk of being flamed...... you offer a worthy observation.
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Old 07-03-13, 11:28 AM
  #77  
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Originally Posted by Merriwether View Post
The air resistance from panniers is certainly greater than the rolling resistance of the trailer-- how much greater I don't know for sure. That would take measurements, and some calculations.
Because of the revival of this topic/thread, I will respond to the above comment that is of central value in the timeless comparison of Panniers and Trailers ~ I, as well, have no scientific understanding of the quantity of added air resistance; however, I would offer that coming down out of the North Cascade, headed east, on the Northern Tier, on what I think was something like a 30 miles downhill coast ..... with my fully loaded panniers the wind resistance held me to 31 mph (without any head or tail winds). I was riding on ATB 26" non-knobby tires, btw.
Hence, never even had to apply brakes.... only keep a sharp look out for coyotes and critters that might have decided to wander out in front of me
Simply fyi for whatever it is worth.
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Old 07-03-13, 11:45 AM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
At least it shows they considered the question may have came up before,
and upon finding an existing thread , did choose to add to it ,

rather than start as if they were the only one to ever have that thought.
True, but I still wish folks would refrain from posting to really old threads. There are lots or reasons why. For one things may well have changed with new products and new techniques coming along all the time. For another the person who asked the question is long gone. For another the folks quoted may no longer hold the opinions they are expressing. So advice that was good advice may no longer be and opinions expressed may have long been reconsidered.

Given that this thread was started 10 years ago, then revived again 5 years ago it seems especially likely that answers are likely to be out of date.

Just me, but... My preference would be for replies to threads that have had no activity for over a year to be blocked. Linking to them and quoting them is another matter, I consider that to be OK as long as it was obvious that it was a zombie thread.
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Old 07-03-13, 01:27 PM
  #79  
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For a thread that is supposed to be dead it does seem to have a lot of followers. I found this and a few other threads/sources by googling "panniers vs. trailers", (@ seeker333, I'm familiar with google, thanks) and in spite of the age of these threads I was able to gain a lot of insight.

Regarding the staleness of the thread - I wasn't aware that there was a protocol re. posting to old threads. My thinking was that if a new thread were started every time a question came up - one that had already been discussed at length at some date in the past, there would be an insurmountable pile of old threads that one would have to wade through to get a particular bit of info. Imagine if new wikipedia entries were created every time new info was added to an existing topic that had sat idle for awhile- there would be dozens if not hundreds of redundant pages on a single topic floating around, each one incomplete and at varying degrees of obsolescence.

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Old 07-03-13, 02:20 PM
  #80  
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Certainly, I don't see nothing wrong adding more opinion to older threads seemingly because subjects like this is just a culmination of personal opinions. Personal opinions do change over time due to advancement in touring luggage technology be it panniers, racks and trailers. Personal opinions are not facts; though unless you do a lot of scientific research like Jan Heine or the engineer of Maya Cycle trailer, your opinion on trailers in general are just that, a personal opinion.

Bob Yak is no longer the only defacto single wheel trailer in existence since 2003. Today, there are a number of single wheel trailers that took upon the deficiencies of the Bob Yak and improved upon it. Some of them aren't all that heavy either. I can only see that more personal opinions on newer trailers will only grow.

No one has the truest and best answers to which system works best. Trailer or panniers. I own both as I have a 2 wheel Burley Travoy and a 1 wheel Maya cycle trailer as well as Ortlieb, Vaude, Serratus (20+ years waterproof versions) and Arkel panniers and use them and own them. They are just that, tools to be used not admired nor debated.

Earth is currently populated with around a few billion people and everyone of them has the right to their own opinions. Why is it that some people from North America seem to think that theirs is right or playing cops and peace keepers thinking that just because you've got a couple of aircraft carriers and nuke subs patrolling the oceans of the world make you think that your ideology and culture need to be imposed and uphold on all human beings living on earth?
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Old 07-05-13, 12:19 AM
  #81  
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Originally Posted by Phatman View Post
Weight did worry me a bit. he yak says it weighs 13 lbs! That's half the weight of my bike! about how much does a rack and pannier set up weigh?
I ride somewhere between fully loaded and ultralight and come in around 1900 g or 4 lbs for racks (Tubus Vega) and panniers (modified Ortlieb Rear Packer+) plus a 6 pack cooler up front. So a little less than a third the weight of a Yak. I am a bit prejudiced against trailers since I almost bought a roadside memorial on the Oregon Coast when my trailer jackknifed. It was a single wheel trailer but not a Bob.
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Old 07-05-13, 08:08 AM
  #82  
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Originally Posted by seeker333 View Post
You just answered a 5-year-old post, and the poster hasn't visited bikeforums.net (logged-in) in over two years.

Always note the date before posting.
No big deal...
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Old 07-05-13, 08:42 AM
  #83  
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I've toured for many years using fully loaded panniers on bikes that could handle my 190+ lbs. plus 40-50 lbs. without mechanical problems, including broken spokes. I have considered a Bob, but after discussing with users and reading about some of the disadvantages such as stability going fast downhill, and the extra drag when riding up long steep grades, which are a big part of my tours, I will continue using panniers. I realize that accidents can happen to anyone regardless if they're using panniers or pulling a trailer, but I have seen the devastating results of someone losing control while speeding downhill with a trailer. A big part of my personal enjoyment while touring is being able to race fast down winding mountain roads. My bikes with properly packed panniers can actually allow me to go faster than some cars around winding roads. Were I to be riding in arid country or where replenishing supplies was a concern, I would seriously look at the 'Extra Wheel.'
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Old 07-05-13, 09:01 AM
  #84  
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Originally Posted by seeker333 View Post
If it's no big deal to you, then why did you bother posting to point out "it's no big deal"?
Obsolete threads are closed by the mod staff.

This thread is still open for all to post in it.

I am a mod and it is No Big Deal .

Go ride your bike and stop trolling.
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Old 07-05-13, 07:54 PM
  #85  
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I agree strongly with your post. Trailers have their place but I think most tourers are best suited to panniers. Some tourers will find a trailer best suits their needs.

In June while cycling south on Hwy 1 in Mendocino County, I met a guy going north who had 4 panniers as well as a bob trailer with a guitar strapped on top. He needed a trailer for the guitar. Period.
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Old 07-05-13, 08:35 PM
  #86  
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C'mon, folks!

Is it really that much of an issue? The guy posted his observations... no harm, no foul.
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Old 07-09-13, 07:38 AM
  #87  
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I've used both Panniers on my LHT. and a Bob Trailer on my Cross bike.

I liked the Bob Trailer for climbing. For me it was easier to climb out of the saddle and swing the bike. No handling issues, but I was on the GAP & C&O Trails, so never going too fast.

Panniers were better for organization.
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Old 07-09-13, 08:11 AM
  #88  
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Like some others here, I've only toured on panniers. But someone on this list suggested that I try a trailer for a bike I'd like to tour on that does not have long chainstays. This thread hasn't convinced me to buy a trailer yet (I own racks and panniers) but there is a lot of good info here on the virtues of trailers.
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Old 07-09-13, 11:17 AM
  #89  
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There were some days in Kansas I thought about stealing a BOB and leaving the panniers and racks in the ditch. Getting blown off the road with the panniers / sails was not fun while while the BOB's trucked down the road.
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Old 07-09-13, 11:30 AM
  #90  
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It's a new thread now!

I had a Kona Ute and replaced it with a LHT and Extrawheel. Didn't like the handling of the Ute and the Extrawheel made it possible to carry mondo loads. Seems to me trailers make sense when you aren't climbing a lot and need to carry extraordinary loads otherwise living with what you can carry on the bike is a better proposition for the motor.
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Old 03-16-14, 01:31 PM
  #91  
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I did a very short over night "tour" a few years ago with a kiddie trailer from In-Step. The biggest issue I had was going through the posts along the trail just before the trail crossed the road. Several times I scraped the sides of the trailer against the posts as it was designed for two kids). I was on a flat grade and riding on chipped stone, the extra rolling resistance of two wheels stunk. If I had to do it again I would probably consider panniers as the space would force me to pack lighter and more efficiently. The trailer is nice for hauling, absolutely, but it's also super easy to pack way more stuff than you need.

My riding partner was using panniers, he just popped them off and tossed them into his tent.

Longer tours though I'm not certain what would be best, though I'm sure an argument could be made for either panniers or a trailer depending on personal preference. I think the biggest difference between the two is the added weight of the trailer, plus the stuff you put in there. So there is probably an extra 10-15lbs of weight by using a trailer... if it gets wet (like my trailer did) the weight will increase if it has canvas or nylon on it.

So it looks like panniers are in my future
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Old 03-16-14, 03:23 PM
  #92  
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my older Burly FLAT BED Is surrounded by a tube the frame, outside the wheel it is like a bumper .

with a portage pack so Dry and with straps I can wear the tailer and climb stairs with the bike in my hands.
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Old 03-16-14, 05:27 PM
  #93  
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Have tried both trailer and panniers. What I learned about using a trailer was how important it was for me to pack it according the the weight limits + weight distribution specifications of the manufacturer.
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Old 03-16-14, 08:23 PM
  #94  
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Originally Posted by Merriwether View Post
The air resistance from panniers is certainly greater than the rolling resistance of the trailer-- how much greater I don't know for sure. That would take measurements, and some calculations. But as air resistance at biking speeds is at least an order of magnitude greater than rolling resistance, there's no doubt which creates the greater drag.

Added air resistance from panniers might add ten or even twenty minutes to a day's ride on tour. That's no small amount.
Rear panniers slow our flat cruising speed on our tandem from 18 mph in sport trim to 17.5 mph in full camp-touring trim. We don't use front panniers. Thus, in flattish terrain our average speed, loaded, is about .5 mph slower than our sport speed. In hilly terrain, say 1000 feet in 20 miles, about 2 mph slower. So it's pretty easy to see that it's neither the wind resistance nor the rolling resistance. It's the weight.
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Old 03-17-14, 12:01 AM
  #95  
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Of course with panniers, the "drag" works in your advantage when you have a tailwind. So about half the time, for a net-out at some point. Plus, if people cared about all this drag stuff, they could optimize the panniers for reduced drag from the front, and optimize them to sail from the rear. And in theory they might deploy zipper fairings. In the 80s the Tailwind panniers had the correct profile, and a claimed reduction in drag over riding pannier free. Today, you see zipper and Tailwind, for the most part, on recumbents. Most upright cyclists don't seem to have the memo.

Not sure how a tailwind would lower rolling resistance on a trailer...
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Old 03-17-14, 11:00 AM
  #96  
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I use both setups depending on the journey, location and duration.
Mainly reach for just the panniers.
Dont kid yourself that there is an advantage to trailers with regards wind resistance (when windy).
Total tosh in my opinion and a loaded two wheel trailer is even worse in this regard.
Doesnt stop me loving my Carry Freedom Y-frame trailer for serious hauling and utility work.
Just bought and built up an Extrawheel trailer with dynamo hub to utilise as a two pannier carrier and charging platform but yet to use it in anger.
I'm about to leave on a tour in two days but as water availability isnt expected to be a problem, I'll skip the trailers and just stick with the panniers.
I had a Bob in the past and found getting decent hard wearing puncture resistant tires a chore and having a suspension bike at the time was worried about the extra load on my piviot bearing.
The sixteen inch tire was very fast wearing as its rotating fast and a spare, with tubes is more things to carry.
I like that my Extrawheel trailer takes the same size wheel as my bike so can act as a spare front wheel in case of failure or spare rim for the rear if necessary. Having to only carry one spare tire and couple of tubes makes me favor it over small wheeled trailers over long distance tours.
I dont think there is really a one size fits all to the pannier/trailer question.
I think the answer is just ride - pick one and go for it!
If you can afford it, or when you can afford it, try the other option.
I believe its about the journey and not the bike, trailer or destination.
What do you believe?

Last edited by rifraf; 03-17-14 at 11:09 AM.
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Old 03-17-14, 11:49 AM
  #97  
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I would opine that it's NOT trailer VS panniers, because either or both could be correct depending on the user and the voyage. An example would be my wife who is gong to start a trans-America self -supported trip next month along with two of her girlfriends. Because the 3 month trip is going to be entirely self-supported; camping, cooking etc., they are using both panniers and BOB trailers. They need the equipment and the methods to carry said gear, which to them requires both.

Arguing one is better than the other is useless until all considerations are given.
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Old 03-17-14, 01:40 PM
  #98  
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Originally Posted by Davet View Post
Because the 3 month trip is going to be entirely self-supported; camping, cooking etc., they are using both panniers and BOB trailers. They need the equipment and the methods to carry said gear, which to them requires both.
Each is using panniers and a B.O.B.? If so, how many panniers?
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Old 03-17-14, 02:55 PM
  #99  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Each is using panniers and a B.O.B.? If so, how many panniers?
One is using panniers only; Ortlieb Front Roller Plus and Back Roller Plus and Ultimate 5 front bag.
One is using BOB trailer and Ortlieb Back Roller Plus on front and rear with Ultimate 5 front bag.
One is using BOB trailer with Ortlieb Front Roller Plus on rear only with Ultimate 5 front bag.
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Old 03-18-14, 05:28 AM
  #100  
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The deciding factor for me was hearing of two separate jackknife wrecks on downhills by people pulling trailers, that and the fact that a guy who has done both says he switched to panniers because the persistent backwards tug of the trailer irritated him. Now that guy (a bike shop employee) tours with panniers but uses his BOB running errands around town.
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