center-mounted child carriers for bicycles
April 18, 2007 11:04 AM   Subscribe

Does anyone have experience with center-mounted child carriers for bicycles like this?

I like the idea of being able to see my 2-year-old ~30 pound son rather than having him behind me, but I wonder how awkward and/or unstable this kind of carrier would feel in use.
posted by Armitage Shanks to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (8 answers total)
 
Looks interesting - there's 29 reviews at Amazon. Also the weight limit is 40 pounds.
posted by exogenous at 11:52 AM on April 18, 2007


I would not put anything between the handlebars and myself that could possibly interefere with steering or braking.
posted by rhizome at 12:02 PM on April 18, 2007


Try asking this guy (not the same product, but same idea).
posted by Utilitaritron at 2:06 PM on April 18, 2007


Putting a child in a seat on top of the bike makes the bike very top-heavy and affects handling. If you can afford it, a trailer is much more safe.
posted by mingshan at 2:49 PM on April 18, 2007


I had a similar seat, though a lot less elaborate, and found the bike's balance was hugely better than the child-behind-you kind.

I never had any problems with steering and braking; even though my kids could put their hands on the handlebars it really wasn't any disturbance. Obviously if you hit something when the kid's between you and whatever you hit, the child will be worse off than if it hit your back. However I felt a LOT more stable, and think we were both much safer, when I had my child in front of me.
posted by anadem at 2:56 PM on April 18, 2007


Not sure if this helps, but I understand that carriers of any kind are illegal in many areas. A police officer told me you could be ticketed for doubling! No idea whether this actually happens, but I do live in a town where they've ticketed ppl for going above the speed limit on the bike path!
posted by acoutu at 3:01 PM on April 18, 2007


I trailer my ~2yo a lot and have queried about 4 people around town who have set-ups like the one you link to. They all like their seats. I've ridden quite a lot (going on 20yrs of city riding) and I don't think the top-mounted seats are safe, or certainly not as safe as a trailer. My son is as least as heavy and squirmy as a bag of groceries, and that's hell on accurate manoeuvering.

To put my mind at ease using the trailer, I added 4 of these lights to the trailer and use the tall flag to help visibility. I have no doubts that being low to the ground and surrounded by a cage is the safest spot for my kid, whether or not I can see him. If your riding situation isn't so precarious (maybe you're on more sedate trails), as long as you're a confident and skilled--and helmeted--rider you should be ok.
posted by cocoagirl at 6:34 PM on April 18, 2007


A friend of mine has this and loves it. His kid won't ride in their trailer.

FWIW, I think it's not recommended for bikes with drop-style handlebars (think 10 speeds).
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 6:43 PM on April 18, 2007


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