Introduction: A Bike Trailer? That's Unheard Of!

Here's another bike trailer, yep, another one. I did one thing that I haven't seen anyone else do so I thought I might as well post.

Step 1: Find Your Frame

I built my last bike trailer from scratch, but I had a full metal shop at my disposal, I was stressed out that I didn't have a bike trailer until I saw this baby stroller one Sunday afternoon in Notre Dame de Grace. when I was out looking at all the beautiful garbage that my upwardly mobile neighbors throw out.

Step 2: Strip

So I tore of everything I didn't need, which in this case means the front wheel and all the fabric.

Step 3: Et En Plus

It pretty much looked like a trailer at this point, but I thought a bed would be useful, so I found some boards and screwed them onto the frame. Man, whenever I upload photos to Instructables they show up overexposed, do you get that too?

Step 4: Rear Front Fork

So, as promised, here's the only interesting part of my Instructable. I never really liked the long curvy bar or straight bar to the seat post methods of attaching the trailer, for my first trailer I built something that was a lot like a bike fork, tied and bolted to the frame around the back wheel, this time, forced to think due to a lack of resources, I just grabbed an extra front fork and bolted it to the back.

Step 5: Fin

So now you're ready to carry around all that heavy shit you've been finding. Like home made furniture made from doors and windows, and scrap metal. One thing that would help is a kickstand for the front of the trailer, as it tends to tip the bike over with its weight. I'll get around to that eventually. Bonne Chance!

Comments

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joshfromga made it! (author)2010-05-22

 Wow! i finally found someone else using strollers as a trailer. The front fork hitch is brilliant, btw. much better than the bent piece of metal chair frame i came up with.

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motrocco made it! (author)motrocco2010-08-01

I have to agree with both points here. Stroller (push chair) is a great idea for a trailer. Really do like your hitch as I've be looking on here for strong looking ones and this seems the best seen so far. Great work.

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hilldomain made it! (author)hilldomain2015-04-29

the fork is strong but where it is attached to frame unless you drill out the holes in the frame for bigger screws it seems like the weak point as I am trying it out on my bike now. There are different movements required in a hitch -pitch roll etc. I can see the weight of the trailer twisting these bolts right off and the forks going right into the back wheel. thats worst case scenario maybe downhill uneven terrain hit a pot hole or something.

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hilldomain made it! (author)2015-04-28

One thing though. It is better for stability/turning etc with the hitch farther forward. That is why people do the ugly seat post thing. If you could do it on a car it would be better as well.

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hilldomain made it! (author)2015-04-28

how are all the different directions of movement accomplished? pitch roll etc? I have been toying with the fork idea combined with the neck from the bike but havent figured it out yet.

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fgunnar made it! (author)2014-09-15

Thanks for the idea.

Is the fork strong enough to hold all the trailer's weight?

Should I get a steel or aluminum fork?

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MasterPrime made it! (author)2012-06-22

i got a question , Hi is it possible to use the stroller to make a tricycle rear attachemt to i can modify my bicycle oh just a cool trailer like yours :)

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rimar2000 made it! (author)2012-05-17

That idea of the fork is very good. I was thinking to do the same but using plain steel rod.

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onemoroni1 made it! (author)2011-05-06

I like it and like the other comments the hitch is great. I thought of using a baby thing, but the thrift stores want too much, so I bought a golf bag cart for $6 and made one. I published the project, but don't see it here yet. I guess it takes a while to show?

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SciFctn made it! (author)2010-09-21

cool, thanks.

I'm gonna have a trip to the hardware store, and see if maybe I can use clamps + bolts instead of drilling through the frame...will keep you posted

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SciFctn made it! (author)2010-09-20

Cool repurpose!
I have an old burly child carrier trailer I want to add a wooden bed to, a couple questions:

Did you drill the frame before you screwed in the boards?
What kinds of screws are those? regular wood screws?
Also, does drilling/screwing through the frame weaken the metal tube?

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182010-09-21

yep I drilled it, I suppose it does weaken it, but I never carried anything heavy enough to crush the frame. just regular wood screws. Good luck!

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Pedalit made it! (author)2010-08-11

You likely have to pry the fork open to do this. It's probably not a big deal because you won't be putting your weight on it anymore.

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182010-08-28

definitely have to pry, might be better to cut out the chain stay, bb, dropout section of a junked frame.

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matroska made it! (author)2010-08-25

ET VOILÀ ce que je fais l'été prochain! Car là notre hiver s'en vient... Super, je magazinais des idées de trailer à vélo; c'est pas mal la solution idéale ça!

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Freyberger made it! (author)2010-08-16

I just found one of the same strollers yesterday. Thanks for you instructable I am starting my project today

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BadgerDervy made it! (author)2010-08-04

What a great idea!! I was going to try this but the only front fork i had was two narrow between the two dropouts for fitting to a rear wheel.

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CrazyHowiesBikes made it! (author)2010-04-26

 I LOVE THIS!!  I stumbled upon this last year and decided to give it a try.  I did a couple of mods including making the stroller parts flat and adding wood supports.  I had been struggling with the hitch, but you fixed that!  At best, this has hauled a load of 125lbs.  I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS WITHOUT ADDING A THIRD WHEEL IN THE FRONT!!  I bent an axle!  Thanks for the great ible!

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dollywild made it! (author)2009-09-21

Sorry, I'm dense, but I don't see how the trailer is attached to the extra bike fork. Help? My neighbor's also throw out wonderful stuff.

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182009-09-22

yep, just a carabiner through a hole in the fork and another hole in the trailer.

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dollywild made it! (author)dollywild2009-09-22

Oh, cool, easy peasy. Thanks for clarifying!

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Dearimasu~ made it! (author)Dearimasu~2009-09-21

The image of the joint is on the previous page don't feel bad I didn't see it the first time either.

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thing 2 made it! (author)2009-09-21

Nice!!!

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Dearimasu~ made it! (author)2009-09-15

I'm thinking about making one of these This seems to be the easiest route to me. now to find a cheap used baby stroller. If you wouldn't mind I'd like to ask you a few questions I'm sure it'll help anyone else who wants to make one! Does the stroller need to have such big wheels with spokes I think most of the new ones or any that I'll find these days would have those tiny little Rollerblade/scooter wheels. I see you used the Fork method to attach it to your bike how does that work with the turns does it work well? I'm thinking about using the Seat post as a connection point but I'll need to figure out how to make one. whats the heaviest thing you've used it to carry/move? Can't wait to make this and go find some good garbage!

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zzoe made it! (author)2009-03-25

Nifty.

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carpespasm made it! (author)2008-07-07

I just dumpster dived that exact same baby buggy. I might make something like this from it.

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casshan made it! (author)2008-05-20

This is brilliant. Thank you for the idea involving the front fork.

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Bug2k made it! (author)Bug2k2008-05-30

I'm worried about the attachment points of the front fork. Not all bikes will have the two attachment points already at the rear hub, and it seems that any amount of tongue weight will bend them off. I thought that if you just tied a piece of rope from the steerer tube up to the seatpost, then the triangulation will improve the strenght alot. A solid piece would work even better. You could get away with only one mount point at the hub then too.

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182008-05-23

Thanks, it was about a week after I posted this that I saw someone else in town using a bike fork to support a basket on the back, and I just saw another instructable of a girl in Boston using one for baskets on the front, it's in the air I guess!

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Whatnot made it! (author)2008-05-13

Good that you thought of that security strap, shows intelligence, I think, to realise it can go wrong and you want to be prepared for such.

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182008-05-13

Which paid off recently when it went wrong (the carabiner shown in the picture is cheap crap and the spring broke, which allowed the trailer to jump off the hitch) here's a note, don't use cheap crappy carabiners.

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leebryuk made it! (author)2008-05-11

I liked the look of the wooden bed. Makes it very attractive, but probably not the best protector against weather. But hey, there's a price to pay for that kind of style!

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182008-05-13

Word, but the price was right (gratuit) and wood is both versatile and easy to work with when you don't have a full shop to use. I was thinking I should put some weatherproofing stain on there, but sometimes I'm just a lazy putain de mec, so I haven't done yet. It is stylish, but could probably be better.

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leebryuk made it! (author)leebryuk2008-05-13

No, it's definitely looks very nice. And the price can't be faulted. Don't take it as a negative. I just use to live in a very rainy clime, and people biked no matter the weather. If it ever came down to it, you could always mount a plastic tub with water tight lid on the deck. But it would cover those nice boards.

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bigman08 made it! (author)2008-05-12

storlers thought of doing that but i never got a chance to do that i got to of the baby storlers in my yard so i gusee that i will do it now

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erichacker made it! (author)2008-05-10

Instead of a kickstand perhaps you could mount the old third wheel somewhere towards the front. It wouldn't have to normally be on the ground, but could take weight when the load was heavy. Thanks for the great idea. I'll have to see what I can do with my old jogger now. Peace, Hacker

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Yerboogieman made it! (author)2008-05-08

it looks alot like this picture i found on Google but not that much chrome and its orange

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Yerboogieman made it! (author)2008-05-08

I've been looking for something to mount lights, subwoofers, mids, highs, and amps so i can show off my low rider

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CapnChkn made it! (author)2008-05-05

Golly MN218! You all are going to say, "What's with this windbag?" Last December, I was at the local store getting myself some Banana Chips and Monkey Sauce, went in back to throw something away, and saw A BABY STROLLER in the dumpster! "Aha!" I sez to meself, "I can use this to make myself a Bicycle trailer! I know it's going to be just a kludge, but it will suffice until I get some better idea!" I take it home, cut the top stuff out leaving the little cloth basket at the bottom to hold whatever I want to carry, took a piece of PVC and heated it, bent it so it would miss the back wheel, strengthened it with duck tape (Funny isn't it I thought you made the glue from horses...) and string, ran a rope through the pipe, and strapped that to my seat post. Works, just... My friend in the wheel chair, his brother, and the kid across the street think this is the Bee's Knees! "Yeah we can make a business out of recycling baby strollers!" I try to tell them there are plans all over the web for building these things, to no avail. Wheel chair wheels, a bathroom shelf set and various grill parts, go into the making of the trailers which I am supposed to test. All discussions of engineering and mechanics fall on deaf ears. Other suggestions from tractor trailer mechanics involve trashbins, patio tables, and talk about how big the wheels would actually be, and how heavy the entire thing is going to be to pull down the road without using the concept of Bicycle Wheels. Tests done by the perps then show that you can't steer with this design, that one is top heavy leaving a bewildered look on the face of the other as to the actual meaning of "center of gravity." One baby stroller shows up with a possible solution to the front pair of double caster wheels causing the entire rig to "fishtail" when enough weight and speed are applied. The pulling arm snaps when I try to make a tight turn while leading my bike out of the yard. Auuugghhhh! To make this short story even longer, I need to say, "A snifter of snuff is enough snuff for a snuff sniffer!" Now, around 5 months later, there is a parade of Baby strollers being hauled around behind mechanical wheel chairs and bicycles in the neighborhood. Fancy lights, blinkers, tricks being done while the kid spins his bike (you can guess how long this trailer is going to last.), and constant comments of "Where's the Baby!" and when I get some beer, "Oh I guess that's the baby" echo resoundingly through the local "_". HeHeee! Wunderbar! Great! All I can tell you is the stroller is made to last long enough to push a baby around long enough so he can start walking by himself. They're held on with plastic, and I've had one fall off miles from home while I was bringing home groceries. You might want to take the assembly apart and see if you can tap, drill, or somehow otherwise make sure you get the most out of this wonderful setup. Yep I really dig the bike fork kludge too! Thank you!!!

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182008-05-07

Thanks for the input, those wheels clips broke then? This attachment method is great for turns, you can go close to 90 degrees before it touches the tire, and I find that I never take right angle turns. I'll stare at those wheels for a while to see if there's some way I can make them more durable.

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CapnChkn made it! (author)CapnChkn2008-05-06

Ugh! Sloppy. The last paragraph I wrote above is about the wheels. I had the wheel fall off, groceries all over the sidewalk while I took it apart and tried to get home with them. The one I got hold of doesn't have any nuts, E rings, or anything sane, just some plastic sort of clips with teeth that "bite" into dents in the axle. So far the rest of the rig is still in action!

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Prometheus made it! (author)Prometheus2008-05-06

If someone asks you where the baby is, you should say, "Aw man, I lost him again??" rofl

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robprimeau made it! (author)2008-05-06

I was floored by your bike hitch idea. I don't like the conventional bike hitches, and wasn't sure at all how I was going to incorporate one onto my bike, but this completely solves that! Great Eureka moment!

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Mr. Rig It made it! (author)2008-05-04

I also wanted to say I think this is the best trailer I have seen yet. I was also going to suggest getting two led tailights from walmart to add to the rear of the trailer if you are towing at night. Great Job you get a plus and a vote!

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Prometheus made it! (author)Prometheus2008-05-06

LED lights on the back, great idea! From Wal-Mart? not so grate akshully....You will get lights made by underpaid and oppressed chinese workers with a grudge you'd have if you worked in their sweat-shops. Try a local bike shop for some simple, cheap, flashers, and put each of a pair at either side of the trailer so that an overtaking motorist can get a sense of scale when approaching you....One more placed at "driver's-eye level" (about 3 feet from the ground) should make you readily noticed at night. Don't forget side reflectors generously placed for the length, with emphasis on where the trailer ends, from the side-view. Reflective tape on the trailer wheels shows motion which captures the eye better, so use that every 10" of "wheel face" to clearly demonstrate motion. If you wanna do the work, cutting a few tire-knobs off and placing reflective tape in the void will create a strobe needing no batteries. Be sure to wash the tire with dish-soap first, before you apply the tape, and cut away any stray edges of the tape or you will lose it on the road. Alos, for any bike or trailer, avoid any tire with a solid ridge down the center (center-ridge tires) as these have incredible rolling resistance in any circumstance. Either replace the tire or cut gaps in the ridge evenly around the tire.....trust me, it's a difference you can feel.... As far as baby-stroller-recycling comes to mind, I've had a trailer that would not have been without the stroller I stripped. I may post a project on that soon. Only use the older strollers with the rectangular-beam construction, for maximum strength.

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Mr. Rig It made it! (author)Mr. Rig It2008-05-06

Yeah I waas wrong to say Walmart, I really dislike them. However the cheap set of lights you get from the local bike shop will most likely made in China as well. Reflective tape is a very good suggestion.

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Mr. Rig It made it! (author)2008-05-04

That trailer turned out really nice. I am tempted to make one like that for myself, but I am not sure I would use it. then again it would be a great grocery trailer. The boards really make it look nice. Great use of the front for for a hitch. One suggestion, show how you attached the trailer to the fork hitch, I am interested in see that. Oh I also reccommend putting tire slime in those trailer tires.

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Prometheus made it! (author)Prometheus2008-05-06

Use Slime, or invest in commercial "flat-proof tires" that use a standard tire carcass with a solid insert....A real bear to mount, but they'll never go flat....ever....Could be worth the investment if you need a trailer alot.

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MN218 made it! (author)MN2182008-05-04

I think you're right about the slime, this thing definitely makes getting over Mont Royal a chore right now. The attachment is not ideal right now, a carabiner in the hitch and another in the trailer hooking them together, you can almost see it in the last picture. I'm trying to find something that works better, but I'm trying to use only found materials as a challenge so it might be a while.

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Mr. Rig It made it! (author)Mr. Rig It2008-05-04

Well it is turning out really nice, oh one other small suggestion is to paint those other forks black, if you have black paint that is.

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