Check out these tips to maximize your BOB experience:
Bike touring with a BOB Trailer is something to carefully consider, and while we are big BOB fans, there are pros and cons as shown in our last blog post. If you choose to go the BOB route, there are a few things you can do to better your BOB ride.
1. Inner tube dampening system. BOB is your friend, but as all friends do, sometimes he gets a little too close for comfort, bouncing and swinging around at you. Creating a slight dampening system can help your BOB track better behind you and reduce the swinging and bouncing that can occur when you are riding more bumpy or technical terrain. Take an old inner tube and cut it so it is one strip. Start with one end and wrap it even between the BOB yoke and the trailer, crossing over with even tension on each side. Tie it up and give it a test run. If your BOB doesn’t pivot well or track behind you on corners, you probably have it too tight. If it still swings around too much, you probably have it too loose. Adjust as needed.
2. Front rack and panniers. Depending on your bike, the BOB can add enough weight onto the rear wheel that the front wheel becomes a little lighter requiring different handling on your part. For a longer tour, especially one that you need to carry more stuff, using front panniers can really balance your bike. Attaching a good front rack and panniers can do wonders to your bike handling and give you more storage. We love Old Man Mountain racks. They are durable and now mount to front forks with thru-axles!
3. Kickstand. Yes, it seems goofy and makes you feel like you are in second grade again, but the rear triangle kickstand is a necessity. It allows you to park your rig anywhere instead of having to find the perfect tree, building, even ground or whatever you need to park a bike and trailer. You can get a rear triangle attached kickstand at Bike Shop Hub.
4. Yak, not Ibex. The Yak BOB is the older version with no suspension and the Ibex is the newer addition that is a full suspension trailer. We’ve tried both and decided that the Ibex, at an added five pounds is just not worth it. It still bounces around and is also more complicated so if/when something breaks, it’s harder to deal with, especially in the backcountry.
5. Robert Axle. Don’t leave the BOB behind just because you bought a sweet new bike that has a rear thru-axle. Rear thru-axles add more rigidity, improving the responsiveness of the rear end of the bike. Virtually all new mountain bikes have 12mm rear thru-axles and The Robert Axle Project is currently the only solution to the compatibility gap. Now with Robert Axles, you can use your best bike for your best adventure. We fit over 30 brands of bikes found in both in the U.S. and Europe. Get one now!
Happy trails and trailers!