Bykaboose Trailer Tips

Trailer The Bykaboose is a simple, inexpensive cargo trailer for bicycles. I've had one for a while, and have some ideas which may help others use it or other trailers more effectively. Have you got other ideas that should be added? Let me know! Send your email to

When assembling the trailer, use Loctite thread locking compound on the bolt threads, which will help make sure they don't come loose at an inopportune time (which is any time, of course). Any of the removable type compounds should be fine, like 242/243 or Tite'n.

"Curved pin" clips are included to hold the wheels onto the axle. My personal experience with these type of clips on lawn mowers and similar equipment suggests that they can sometimes work loose, and that would be unfortunate during a ride. Two bendable cotter pins were taped to the bottom of the fiberglass bed of the trailer, so I used them instead of the clips. They aren't as quick for disassembly, but will not fall out. If you want something removable, consider some kind of locking bracket or retaining wires, or at least carry a couple of spares taped to the underside of the trailer bed.

Some of the metal hardware that attaches the trailer to the bike may rattle or jingle during a ride, particularly the chain on the hitch lock. If this jingling bothers you, check the hardware store for Plasti-Dip, a thick, rubbery paint. It's also useful for coating brake levers and other metal surfaces, in addition to the manufacturer's intended uses such as coating tool handles.

To keep people from absconding with the trailer, a loop of security cable and a padlock are provided. The instructions are a little unclear about where exactly to lock this cable, and to keep it away from the spokes, I made a simple bracket attached to a braze-on at the bike's dropout. An unused fender or rack braze-on would serve well for this, and the bracket need be nothing more than a piece of metal with two holes in it, bolted to the outside of the braze-on eyelet.

Tire pressure on a trailer tire should be set much lower than most people expect. Setting it so that the tires each have a square inch of contact area seems to work for me. If there's 30 pounds of cargo in the trailer, that means each tire will support 15 pounds of it, so 15 PSI is a good starting pressure. For 90 pounds of cargo, each tire will be carrying 45 pounds, so to keep only one square inch of contact area per tire, the inflation pressure should be 45 PSI. Experiment with this; I generally don't use pressures below 15 PSI because it's too hard to get them accurately set. (These figures don't allow for the weight of the trailer itself, but that's only about seven pounds per wheel, and it seems to work to just ignore it.)

A fitted "tonneau" cover is included with the Bykaboose. While it will keep the rain off the trailer's contents, it doesn't seem to be very waterproof. If you regularly use the trailer in wet conditions, sporting goods stores sell spray or brush-on waterproofing treatments for tent seams which may be helpful in sealing the top and sides.

The elastic loop which is used to hold back of the cover on the trailer can slip off the underside of the frame. A couple of stick-on rubber feet for electronics can be stuck to the frame to provide catches to keep the elastic in place.