Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Want to get your kids on two wheels? Got any general 'family biking' questions? Chat here
User avatar
htsw5
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2012 20:02 pm

Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby htsw5 » Mon Jan 09, 2012 20:34 pm

Hi,

Some advice on taking 2 kids on a bike for a daily commute please...

I do a daily commute of 2 miles to Nursery and then 3 miles on to work. I usually do drop off and my wife does pick up. However, I need to have the ability to do pick up as well in case my wife gets stuck at work, so the solution needs to be rideable by just me for most of the time.

Our eldest child was initially in a childseat and has recently graduated to a tag along, which has been perfect for him.

However, our youngest is about to start at Nursery and I need to figure out how to take them both. (3 years old & 1 year old)

Ideally I would like to have a rear child seat and the tagalong at the same time, but the ones I own both fit to my seatpost so I can't. I did once drive past a combination that had both but I couldn't stop see how they did it.

I have thought about a front child seat but I'm not so keen as they seem quite exposured to the elements and we have to be able to go out in all weathers.

A 2 child trailer isn't really an option either as my eldest would get bored if he was relegated to just a passenger. I also wonder when he will move up to his own bike (with a trailgator for me to take it when he's been dropped off).

Any ideas how this can be solved?

Are there tagalongs / trailgator equivalents that fit to the rear axle?

Many thanks

User avatar
baudman
Posts: 737
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2007 09:14 am
Contact:

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby baudman » Tue Jan 10, 2012 01:56 am

Most tagalongs are designed to be attached to the seatpost. With a rear seat in the way, that would be impossible.

I've certainly seen people bodge up 'fake' seatposts on the rear of racks to accommodate trailers - but I'm not sure I'd want my child hanging off one of them.

I'd also be a little bit concerned about how well the thing would ride, with all of that weight on the back. Rear seats sit high, and then the attachment for the tagalong being somewhat high as well.

Off the top of my head, your solutions could be :

Front mounted seat with tagalong - What I picked (see 'family' pic in sig). Not really sure if the rear seat would be any less exposed to the weather. In any case, in my experience, it only takes a few positive experiences and the little kids love it no matter what the weather (provided they're dressed for it). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25xJ35PS ... -R-Tr68iMM And, quite a few of them have extra accessories like windshields etc (BoBike mini). Plenty of wind/rain in the Netherlands. I think the ability to converse more than makes up for it anyway. (Check legality in UK, however).

Xtracycle - Both on the Xtracycle, or one on the Xtracycle with a bodged extra mount for the tagalong. I'd favour that to putting it the bodged mount on the rack, as Xtracycles (whichever varient) are built quite strong. They also ride fine for non-kid use. The Xtracycle Free Radical can be added to most existing bikes - otherwise Kona Ute, Surly Big Dummies and Yuba Mumbos use the same sorta stuff.

CargoBike - If you weren't going to use the Free radical (above) and you're in to new bike territory, think about a bakfiets or similar. I semi regularly drop one or both off in ours (500m, then 1km respectively) and then ride the other 4kms to work on it. Not the speediest of commuters, but certainly one of the smiliest.

In all - there is no real 'optimal' solution. There will always be a compromise. I tend to compromise on my comfort/speed first for the 'family' vehicles. There's also a budget there - otherwise I'd have a Harry v Larry Bullitt! :twisted:
Commute - MASI Souville3 | Road/CX - MASI Speciale CX | Family - 80s ugly | Utility - Cargobike

User avatar
htsw5
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2012 20:02 pm

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby htsw5 » Tue Jan 10, 2012 20:52 pm

Thanks for your suggestions.

I've never tried a front mounted seat - I might see if I can borrow one to try it out. I have a slight concern about having to adjust your pedal style so you don't bang your knees on it. Does it also give a problem with trying to mount the bike once loaded? Must be hard to swing the leg over without hit one of the kiddies and keep the bike upright?

I like the ability keep the tag-a-long and upgrade to trailgator once he is confident enough and then ultimately get him solo and the littl'un onto the tag-a-long.

I'm not keen on the bodging a 2nd seat post as it will need to be pretty robust for the daily commute - Definitely not an option to have any concerns about it staying on...

Not really thought of the new bike approach before. Conscious that this challenge will only be for a couple of years so whilst there is some budget (based on avoiding a 2nd car!) i'm not sure it will stretch to a full on cargo bike and extras.

I've got a couple of months until this set is required so I'll keep doing some research.

Any one else with thoughts?

Thanks

User avatar
baudman
Posts: 737
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2007 09:14 am
Contact:

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby baudman » Fri Jan 13, 2012 00:56 am

htsw5 wrote:I've never tried a front mounted seat - I might see if I can borrow one to try it out. I have a slight concern about having to adjust your pedal style so you don't bang your knees on it. Does it also give a problem with trying to mount the bike once loaded? Must be hard to swing the leg over without hit one of the kiddies and keep the bike upright?

Different brands/models have different levels of getting in the way. It's also influenced by the bike's geometry. For my family vehicle, the BoBike Mini meant minimal knee splaying, although I did later mount old-school upright bars on it, so I wasn't leaning over Thing2 when riding. Models like the WeeRide, I've found, sitting back on the top tube, mean more knee splaying.

Mounting the bike - I think it's actually less problematic than a rear seat.

htsw5 wrote:I like the ability keep the tag-a-long and upgrade to trailgator once he is confident enough and then ultimately get him solo and the littl'un onto the tag-a-long.


Once I learned about Trailgators, I never really saw the point of a tag-a-long. Buy a decent bike for them, and tag that along ;) (Although, mixed reports of trailgators on here via the search).
Commute - MASI Souville3 | Road/CX - MASI Speciale CX | Family - 80s ugly | Utility - Cargobike

CycleMum
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2012 21:41 pm

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby CycleMum » Fri Jan 13, 2012 22:29 pm

htsw5 wrote:Any one else with thoughts?

We have a front seat with a tag-along and find the set up ideal - our boys were 4 and 2 when they outgrew the trailer, and are now 5 and 3.

We use this combination to commute to school every day (what ever the weather), and just have to make sure the little one on the front is well wrapped up in winter, with an all in one waterproof, balaclava and good thick gloves being essential.

We bought the Oxford Leco Top Tube as a cheap way to find out if the front seat would work, and to date haven't upgraded. It is fitted to a year 2000 Specialized Rockhopper Mountain Bike (19" frame) and the little one is mounted up close to the bars so he can hold on. My husband is almost 6' and he says the seat hardly affects him, certainly no splaying legs. It does help the bike has platform pedals, which gives some room to adjust footing to get comfy.

At first we were a little concerned with how it would ride, and how the balance of the setup would feel. However having one child at the front and one at the back provides good weight distribution and it feels fine.

Mounting with this seat is very easy - adult first, little one is then picked up under the arms and swung onto the seat and fastened in place. Eldest then mounts the tagalong and we're off. Much easier than our rear seat, which obviously needs the child in place first.
htsw5 wrote:A 2 child trailer isn't really an option either as my eldest would get bored if he was relegated to just a passenger.

Quick thought on this - you might find when he's got a companion he'll be less bored - our two loved being in the trailer at the age yours are - and the eldest's friends thought he was "cool" arriving at school in the trailer in his reception year. A trailer is certainly easier in the bad weather when they are young, has more stability in frosty conditions, allows you to carry bags etc and cars tend to give you a wider berth. Depends on whether the kids get on, their combined weight, storage space and your ability to pull them both of course!

User avatar
htsw5
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2012 20:02 pm

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby htsw5 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 20:23 pm

CycleMum wrote:We use this combination to commute to school every day (what ever the weather), and just have to make sure the little one on the front is well wrapped up in winter, with an all in one waterproof, balaclava and good thick gloves being essential.



Glad to hear that there are other all weather commuters out there. I chickened out of taking the wee man on the bike this morning at -6C! My first 'pass' of the winter and led to a tantrum from him not wanting to go in the car etc.

Image

On the bike set up I think I'm going to try to borrow / rent a front seat to see how it feels. My C2W scheme ends in Spring, so I'll have to start thinking of what to replace the current workhorse with. I'm guessing a long top tube is going to be a key factor if I'm going for a front seat. Hmm...
Last edited by htsw5 on Wed Jan 18, 2012 20:24 pm, edited 4 times in total.

t4tomo
Posts: 2545
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2007 21:27 pm

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby t4tomo » Tue Jan 17, 2012 14:07 pm

i used have a bobike front mounted seat which I pikced up on ebay - it had windscreen and weather flap too which was useful. Never really got in the way of pedalling attached to a fairly standard mountain bike.

We progressed to a leco top tub mounted one when the were bigger, which was a little more intrusive on knees/ pedalling, but not overly so - it depends a bit on size of child. I did once give the mrs a lift on the leco seat, which did interfere with pedalling a touch more!

never ran with a tag along or trailgator too, but one up front one out back seems better than 2 out back.

I'd recommend the bobike over the leco for a 1 year old - much better protected and supported.
Bianchi Infinito CV
Bianchi Via Nirone 7 Ultegra
Brompton S Type
Carrera Vengeance Ultimate Ltd
Gary Fisher Aquila '98
Front half of a Viking Saratoga Tandem

User avatar
baudman
Posts: 737
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2007 09:14 am
Contact:

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby baudman » Thu Jan 19, 2012 08:14 am

Saw one of these in the flesh the other day. (Here's a UK distributor).
http://www.conwasa.demon.co.uk/yepp/index.htm
Had a few things I really like above the BoBike we had. Front handle. Nicer straps. I think the padding would wear better. Keyed lock.

I'm still a big rap for the BoBike Mini, but I think if I were going through it again, the Yepp may win out. Still, YMMV. Worth comparing.
Commute - MASI Souville3 | Road/CX - MASI Speciale CX | Family - 80s ugly | Utility - Cargobike

User avatar
htsw5
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2012 20:02 pm

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby htsw5 » Fri Jan 20, 2012 15:53 pm

Thanks for the all the advice.

Continuing my research, I came across the FollowMe http://www.followme-tandem.com/english/ which connects to the hub rather than seat post.

Any one had any experience of using one?

It will still put all the weight on the back wheel, but should be more stable especially when the following bike lurches to one side or is riderless.

User avatar
baudman
Posts: 737
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2007 09:14 am
Contact:

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby baudman » Tue Jan 24, 2012 00:49 am

htsw5 wrote:Continuing my research, I came across the FollowMe http://www.followme-tandem.com/english/ which connects to the hub rather than seat post.

Any one had any experience of using one?


Briefly discussed here - viewtopic.php?f=40032&t=12807921&p=17292172&hilit=%22follow+me%22#p17292172
Commute - MASI Souville3 | Road/CX - MASI Speciale CX | Family - 80s ugly | Utility - Cargobike

t4tomo
Posts: 2545
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2007 21:27 pm

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby t4tomo » Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:03 am

you can also get tandem tag alongs - i.e a tag along with 2 seats, although I think only 2nd hand now on ebay etc. worth considering for later - 1 yr old a bit young for that at the moment.
Bianchi Infinito CV
Bianchi Via Nirone 7 Ultegra
Brompton S Type
Carrera Vengeance Ultimate Ltd
Gary Fisher Aquila '98
Front half of a Viking Saratoga Tandem

Todd Sweeney
Posts: 102
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 11:44 am

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby Todd Sweeney » Wed Jan 25, 2012 15:17 pm

Hi - I have a Burley Piccolo tagalong that attaches to a specific rack rather than the seatpost. I can and have also therefore used it with a rear child seat. Sadly these are no longer made. Islabikes also used to make a similar one and this may still be available.

secretdancer
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2009 15:07 pm

Re: Tagalong(/Trailgator) & rear Childseat together?

Postby secretdancer » Thu Jan 26, 2012 09:17 am

htsw5 wrote:Ideally I would like to have a rear child seat and the tagalong at the same time, but the ones I own both fit to my seatpost so I can't. I did once drive past a combination that had both but I couldn't stop see how they did it.


I have successfully done this with a tagalong and rear seat. Seat clamped onto the down tube high enough to allow the tagalong to sit under it and clamp onto the seat post or any other bit of the downtube that's free. Have even taken the kids on gentle off road using this setup and it was fine. Heavy mind!

Also used to use a two seat trailer to get them both to nursery- they used to fight like cat and dog on occasions though, but that was mostly due to them getting too big and running out of space!

My youngest is now too old/big for the childseat so I'm in a similar boat to you with the problem of getting them both the mile and half to school, then me onto work. Eldest can ride independantly but the roads are far too busy for him, so might be a case of pavement riding until he becomes more road aware.


Return to “Family & Kids cycling forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest