Y-Frame Trailers FAQ
Y-Frame Trailer FAQ
Tell us about the Y?
The simple aluminum frame, although very light is incredibly strong, while many luggage options can fix to the plywood load base. Add to this the benefits of easy storage (the wheels and handle ‘Quick-release’ in seconds), and what you have is one of the most affordable, versatile trailers on the market today. The simple but efficient hitch allows fast and secure attachment to and release from your bike.
Does the trailer make the bike unstable and wiggle?
No, your bike will remain responsive and nimble. However, if you have a 2-wheel trailer that hitches at the seat post then yes, they can cause your bike handling problems.
Do trailers slow the bike down?
Yes but not as much as panniers. Trailers are the most efficient way to carry by bike. They offer low wind resistance, are good at conserving momentum, and have a negligible increase in rolling resistance relative to an equivalent pannier set or rucksack.
How do I stop things from falling off the trailer?
You have a lot of options. Cargo straps, bungees or the velcro straps which are included in every Y trailer can do the job. We also use the ROK Straps which are elastic straps often used by motorcyclists. If you are carrying a beer crate then just tie it down to the load bed using the straps. If you are using a foldable box or an aluminum box, you can fix the rubber stoppers included to bottom of the box. These fit into the holes on the load bed stopping lateral motion of the box. This can then be tied down with the straps for a very secure trailer load. If “more secure” and “permanent” is the way to go, screw the box to the load bed using longer bolts.
How do I take care of my trailer?
The Y-Frame needs very little maintenance, however its reliability and length of service can be dramatically improved by following these simple steps:
– Regularly clean and grease the axle shafts.
– DO NOT store the trailer with axles in the frame, condensation can cause them to rust in place.
– NEVER Grease or oil the hitch. Grease attracts grit and shortens the hitches life.
– Check wheel condition. Are the spokes tensioned, how worn are the tires, is there any looseness in the wheel bearing’s?
If you do not feel comfortable performing these checks consult your nearest bike dealer.
Are any of the nuts or bolts on the trailer loose?
Inspect for any signs of damage on the frame or load bed.
Is it legal to use on the road?
The legally correct answer to this question is: Check the rules and regulations in your country of use. All Carry Freedom trailers are built to pass safety and transport rules in Europe which are among the strictest in the world. If you are in doubt, check before use. We provide front and rear reflectors and our wheels have reflective stripes on the tires. We also appeal to your common sense when using the trailer.
Here is what you should do before every ride:
– Make sure the trailer is correctly hitched, loaded, and assembled.
– Pull at the trailer wheels to make sure they are secure.
– Check your brakes are in good working order.
– Inspect the hitch before every ride to make sure the hitch is safe.
– Once on the move check your stopping distance for trailer weight, and road conditions.
Things to remember:
– It is easy to forget you are towing a trailer.
– With a heavy trailer it takes longer than normal to stop.
– The trailer turns tighter than the bike, be careful in corners.
– Stop if you hear an unusual noise, or notice a change in handling.
– Practice with an empty trailer away from traffic until you are comfortable using it.
– Be safe
Can I buy a flag to fit to the trailer?
Yes, we now have a combined flag and light holder for the Y trailer. We combine this with the fantastic flags from Traumvelo. They are reflective, robust and very visible.
Can I take my trailer on an airplane?
We have made many trips with a trailer on an airplane. If you take the wheels off the Y you can fit it into a suitcase.
I have a bike from XYZ, can i attach a trailer?
This is probably the most difficult question to answer. The trailer will fit over 95% of all bicycles. If the quick release axle is too short to fit the hitch adapter get a longer skewer. Some problems you may meet:
– There is not enough thread on the hub axle. We can use an older hitch for this purpose.
– The drop-out has a strange shape and the hitch adapter will not fit. Try to rotate the hitch adapter. If this does not work you can use another hitch option, from Weber or Chariot. These all fit on the Y tow arm.
I have carbon dropouts, will that work with a trailer?
DO NOT fit the hitch to bicycles with carbon dropouts.
They are not suitable for this type of application and might fail without warning.
Can the trailer be attached to a wheelchair/scooter/motorbike/mobility scooter?
Sometime yes, sometimes no. Every use that is not listed in the manual, is a custom solution. You are responsible for your actions. We can except no responsibility for this kind of use.
Is going up kerbs or between bollards on cycle paths a problem? What about off road? Do i have to avoid every pothole?
The trailers are tough cookies. They will go where you want to go and then some. But just as with bikes, a little common sense is useful sometimes. Pointless kerb jumping will damage rims, risk tire failure and loosen spokes. Most Carry Freedom trailers are narrower than your handlebar, so if your handlebar will fit then the trailer can follow. But having said that, care is always needed when cornering.
Will they allow trailers on trains?
This would be a similar answer as the one about planes. If you hear of problems on trains, please let us know, so we can post here.
Does it make it harder to cycle?
About 90% of your cycling energy is used in dragging you and the bike through the air, but a trailer sits very close behind your bike in a bubble of “turbulent” air that the bike pulls along anyway. The trailer is similar to a racing cyclist who tucks in behind the leader to save energy. A rough drag coefficient can be guessed at if you know an objects frontal area. Most of a trailers frontal area is in the shadow of the rider, and will certainly not add more frontal area to a bike than panniers will. Cycling with loose clothing would cost more energy than cycling with a trailer.
What are the legal requirement for reflectors and lights?
You are responsible for following your local highway laws. Please check this before riding with a trailer. We have red, rear reflectors fitted and a front reflector included in the box. These are German standard, which is one of the strictest standards in the world. Lights should be used when the load is so high that it hides the rear light. Once again the best advice is check your laws and use common sense.
What size tires are used?
Y-Small 16 inch and Y-Large 20 inch “easy rolling”, robust city tires.
What is the maximum load I can carry?
90 kg for the Y large, 45 kg for the Y small. The Y large 90 kg weight limit is reduced to 50 kg when using a quick release axle. The 50kg load limit for quick release axles relates to the axle fatigue life, while the 90 kg limit for threaded axles relates to the bicycles emergency stopping distance. The hitch itself is tested to 150 kg.
Can I carry children and/or animals?
No kids on load trailers, no grannies and no mother-in-laws. No animals, unless they are safely kept in pet boxes. Do not carry a pet in an open box, the animal could jump out unexpectedly and cause a grave accident
I have a trailer, and my hitch doesn’t look like the one you have, should I upgrade?
The original hitch was simply never a really good design and was phased out in September 2010. We would be much happier if your trailer was fitted with the newer Lollypop hitch.
The lollypop hitch has been tested under very severe conditions, not only by our customers riding around the world with ridiculous amounts of luggage, but also by certified testing agency Velotech in Germany. The result is a tried and tested hitch that will carry your load safely.
Why are your trailers so expensive?
Well it is not because we have to pay for our yacht ;>). We use premier parts and take care of the way they look. We go an extra mile to make these the best trailers in the world. But talking about expensive – our friends say that if you use a product everyday, then the price becomes less important than the result of using the product.
Do you sell spare wheels/tires/load-beds/etc.?
You can get all spare parts and accessories through the CycloSun Webshop.
Can I share some pictures of my adventures with you?
Yes! Please do! We love seeing pictures of our trailers out and about having fun – email them to us and we’ll put them on our website to inspire others.