- Product Dimensions: 25.5 x 6.7 x 2 inches ; 6 pounds
- Shipping Weight: 7.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- ASIN: B002VPWUIC
- Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (429 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,323 in Sports & Outdoors (See Top 100 in Sports & Outdoors) Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
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TRAIL-GATOR CHILD BIKE TOW BAR
|Price:||$75.01 & FREE Shipping. Details|
|You Save:||$46.98 (39%)|
- Enter your model number to make sure this fits.
- Tow Bar converts an ordinary child's bike into a safe, towable bike trailer
- Once bar is installed, child's bike can be attached or disconnected anytime, without tools
- For children with a maximum weight of 70.5 pounds
- Adult must weigh at least twice that of the child rider
- Fits 12- to 20-inch tire size children's bikes
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From the manufacturer
Ride Attached Or Separately
Almost every commercially available children´s bike can be attached to almost every commercially available adult´s bike.
- used as a learning aid or a tow bar
- tool-free children´s bike attachement or removal
- quick release to detach from the seatpost
|Item Dimensions||2.2 x 6.77 x 25.59 inches|
|Item Weight||6 pounds|
|Shipping Weight||6.83 pounds|
The Trail-Gator tow bar converts an ordinary child's bike into a safe, towable trailer bike. When the child's bike is connected, the front wheel is lifted off the ground and a stabilizing bar prevents the handlebars from turning, so the adult is in control of steering. Children can choose to coast or pedal while they are being towed, making the ride much easier for them.
Top Customer Reviews
I didn't use the torque wrench the second time around. I just tightened it until it felt snuggish. We've ridden it twice at this point and it hasn't shown any sign of movement or loosening.
I will say that I like the idea behind the Trail Gator. It's a rather elegant concept. I just think it could use a few more iterations of development.
Let's talk about user experience. I'm knocking off one star for user experience.
First, a little background: There are two different cam lock bolts that keep the tow bar attached to the tow bike and child bike. The bolt on the tow bike is much larger than the bolt on the child bike, I assume because part of the force on the child bike is shared by part of the adapter that has been bent outward on either side as a pair of ears for the bar to rest on.
It's a little annoying having to unscrew these bolts, fumble around with washers, and maneuver them in and out of the mounting holes as you remove and reinstall the tow bar. It's bad enough on the tow bike, but it's super annoying on the child bike because the weird plastic guard thing gets in the way. I'm not sure what the point is for that guard btw, other than marketing. Consider leaving it off during your install.
One of the things I'd like to see on V2 of the Trail Gator is a mounting system with fewer removable parts. A welded nut on each end of the bar, for example, would cut the part count in half. The quick release system on my mountain bike's front wheel has precisely one part to remove (a cam lock axle combination), for example. But ideally there would be one removable part - the tow bar - and a full turn or less of rotating action on each side to secure it. This would make removing the bar very quick and easy.
Second, the bar is pretty heavy. It feels like it's made of steel, which is a little out of place on my aluminum mountain bike. I understand that this was a good engineering choice for V1 of the product, but I'd like to see some lighter materials in V2. If that increases costs, perhaps offer more than one product with the premium product offering the lightest weight. Not many people would buy it, but I would.
Third, while the Trail Gator works with my independent rear suspension mountain bike, there is no provided way to store the bar if/when I remove it. The default mounting system assumes a hard tail bike. Again, I understand this choice for V1, but I'd like to see some provision for rear suspension bikes in V2. Currently, I have to bring a backpack or rig up some way to mount the bar to my center post between the seat and handlebars.
Ok, so that's the bad stuff. The good news is that this product works pretty well in practice. It's a little cumbersome to setup and tear down, but it works pretty well during the ride. My 3-1/2 year old daughter loves it and her Woom bike with the free wheeling kit is the perfect child bike for towing.
I have disc brakes on my mountain bike, and I really appreciate them while I'm towing all that extra weight. Something to think about.
Also, my mountain bike has a mid-drive Bosch ebike motor. I really highly recommend using an ebike with this kit if you can afford it. I don't always turn on the electric assist, but when a big hill comes along it's really nice to have some help towing.
So now I've ordered a new hardware kit from their website for $4.95 + $4.95 shipping, as I wasn't able to find any of their hardware available on Amazon.
To their credit, at least the parts are available for individual order on their website and I don't have to rig it together with parts from Lowe's. I was able to buy an exact replacement for the quick release I lost as well.
PART 2: Later this evening update: I installed all 3 shims on the top u-bolt on the child's bike receiver. In my enthusiasm to make sure all was tightened well, I sheared off one side of the u-bolt, so I'll be at Home Depot early tomorrow trying to find a replacement. The good news is that the 3 shims will raise the child's front tire to 3 inches above the ground.
I went on to install the clamp with ball to the child's bike and adjust the clamp with the socket on the tow bar. These are the 2 items that hook the tow bar to the steering to keep the front wheel locked. I am disappointed with this. When very little pressure is put on the handle bars, the socket pops out of the ball. I think I will also buy a strap at Home Depot tomorrow to wrap around the child's front wheel and the tow bar, so my granddaughter won't pull the steering loose as she is being towed.
Lastly, when I tightened the single bolt on the adult bike tow arm more than I already had, it DID decrease the amount of side to side movement of the tow bar. I think that will work better when it is used, but we'll see.
PART III: Just boxed it up to send back for a refund. Using a few hours out of each of 4 days trying to tweak the installation and then giving it repeated trial runs before vacation, the Trail-gator was just not safe for our 6 year old granddaughter. It wanted to move out to the side on its own, and it tended to list to the side no matter how I kept tweaking it. Other reviewers have mentioned this is their posts. We really wanted this to work, but it wasn't worth all the frustration and time.