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I'm looking for an aerodynamic kid's trailer to tow behind my Velomobiel Quest. Some corner points:

  • Needs to be attached at axle height
  • don't care for the coupling, because that needs to be replaced anyway
  • suspension is a must
  • large enough for one up to 8-10 year old kid with a bit of luggage, e.g. swimming pool stuff, something to eat/drink
  • two-wheeled (trikes can't tow inline trailers)
  • aerodynamics are pretty important
  • rain-proof

I live in Germany, so it should be sold here or at least there should be a vendor that ships here.

Edit: A bonus would be if there was a way to somehow carry a kid's bicycle on the trailer such that the kid can ride as far as he wants and then climb into the trailer and I can continue.

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wow, I feel your pain, but I don't have any suggestions. I don't recall even seeing a picture of one, ever. Good luck! –  Mσᶎ Jan 23 at 8:00
    
Wouldn't an 8-10 year old be able to ride quite well already? I have seen kids at maybe 13 doing crazy jumps that I can only dream of doing after years! –  Vorac Jan 23 at 12:18
    
Definitely! Still, at the moment, the boy is five, and even at ten, I think there's an upper limit on how far he's ready to ride for himself. I live ~100km from the sea, which is a nice ride for me, but probably far too much for a kid. –  arne Jan 23 at 12:20
    
Any kid trailer I have seen is a brick with wheels, but I would say that the extra weight adds in more. Speed wise, I have taken a hit of no more than 6kph. However, they don't really add much drag and your shell should displace a good amount air reducing its drag. For suspension, the name brands have them, mine isn't one, but the kids never complain. –  BPugh Jan 23 at 17:06
    
I was thinking that if the trailer has a handle for jogging, you might be able to strap the child bike to it. I have not seen any kid trailers with a extended cargo area. I could make my own, but that is because my kid trailer is steel and there is a cargo trailer that use the same frame. I could weld them together or create a special connection off the back of the kid trailer to connect the cargo one too. –  BPugh Jan 23 at 19:16

2 Answers 2

Generalisations on child-carrying trailers

  • Based on stroller designs, so suspension is rare.
  • Small wheels on cheaper designs.
  • Seat is positioned for visibility and for an adult not to stoop too far to attend to the child. This is bad for stability and aerodynamics.
  • Built like tents: frame with some kind of fabric over it. I've seen trailers/strollers with mesh fronts and ones with rollable plastic fronts, but as the overall shape remains a modified brick with fluttering fabric, I doubt they'll be very aerodynamic. Your velomobile is designed to have a minimised wake, so the trailer gains no aerodynamic advantage from following it.

What I would do: Make my own.

  • Find a suspended cargo trailer or design and construct one from tubular sections of aluminium or steel.
  • Create a fibreglass clamshell from scratch using insulation board for the former, like the Kingsbury Quattro
  • Or find a junk fibreglass boathull, invert it and add a vertical section until the interior height is sufficient. Fit a polycarb window on each side, but your child probably won't appreciate a porthole which shows the rear of your velomobile.
  • Use good hinges and hydraulic struts to hold the shell open (like a car hatchback)
  • If the shell needs catches or straps to hold it shut, there should be a release mechanism on the inside.
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Actually, there are quite a few makers of kid trailers that have suspension nowadays. However, your points are still valid. While building my own trailer certainly crossed my mind and I think I've got the skills to pull it off, I fear that could take quite some time and money and wanted to check whether there are any commercial options. –  arne Jan 29 at 15:47
    
Thanks for the link btw. That is more or less exactly the way I was thinking to do it. –  arne Jan 29 at 15:54
    
A hard shell would add at least another 20 pounds weight, more than offsetting any advantage from the (hopefully) aerodynamic shape. –  Daniel R Hicks Jan 29 at 17:24
    
@DanielRHicks The Quest weighs ~30kg ready-to-ride (i.e. with spare tubes, spare tyres, pump, food, drink), and you can easily get away from most upright cyclists, even well-trained ones on less-than-6kg-bikes. It's the aerodynamics that matters most at high speeds. –  arne Jan 30 at 8:22

Both the Qeridoo Sportrex 1 and the Chariot 1 from Thule have suspension, are rainproof, have an aerodynamic profile, have axle attachments, and have two wheels (with an optional third for running, etc)...

Qeridoo is even a German brand, so it shouldn't be hard to get in Germany...

But I don't know if you could fulfil the rest of the requirements (8-10 years old kid, possibility of carrying the bicycle at the same time, etc).

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Thank you for the links, but both of these are still bricks with wheels. I was thinking along the lines of "drop with wheels", just like a velomobile –  arne Feb 24 at 6:14

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