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Hiking Trailers, with pics, and making your own!

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Hi all - hiking trailers are mentioned here and there so thought I would put a post up with some info and some pics and also details of the one I made.

The American military conducted a series of tests on moving soldiers and their heavy packs. Rear packs, front and rear packs, trailers. They found that using a trailer used 80% less energy expenditure - 80%!! - but, for some weird reason they pushed their trailers instead of having them attached to a hip belt and pulled along behind.

First off - no, they never get stuck or bogged down, they bounce over all terrain, are easy to maneuvre, aren't a problem at refugios nor on public transport. It is difficult to explain how easy it is to use a trailer, it is one of those "you must try it to know" situations. The absolute joy of having no weight on the back - and no sweaty back! - walking upright and casually and the trailer just coming on behind with seemingly no effort at all. True, one cannot beat the laws of physics and going up a steep hill one can feel the trailer, but at a tiny fraction of what it is like to do that hill wearing a pack. Compare it to this .. carrying a loaded bicycle and wheeling one along - the difference is similar.
Also, they are safe. There is a big 'click to release' buckle on the hip belt - one click and one is separated from it. Though really, if it became ungainly on a truly steep descent all one would have to do is to sit down!!

Currently I use the Wheelie, from Radical Design. They offered it to me at one quarter price when they found out that I do first aid on Camino and need to carry a lot of supplies. Originally I declined as I didn't believe that I deserved it, but they pointed out that they would get good advertising from me having one, so I agreed. It is a great trailer, beautifully engineered and made and will last a lifetime, definitely mine, I'm 70 ;) - but I found the bag that comes with it awkward and cumbersome. It has one big front and one big rear storage space so anything small you put in disappears down to the bottom! Also, it is not easily removable, one has to take the frame apart! and, it does not have all the outer small pockets we are used to on Camino. This means that one has to dig around and remove bags of things to go upstairs in a refugio - a real pain. So I removed the bag and chose a rectangular tube shaped rucksack, the UK made Yellowstone - fab pack - and with the addition of some webbing belts made it so that it is easily fitted securely to the frame but removes in seconds. I also changed the hip belt for a lighter one and made new webbing connectors.
This is how I have it now - though I do also have a smaller removable first aid 'reaction bag' that I drop down over the handles (and a big first aid sign and a small solar panel).

First pic is as it came, with the addition of tubes for a walking pole and umbrella/sun parasol and the second with my pack adaptation. As you can see, I am not a young fit person!!
Note bicycle bell!! (and re footwear questions elsewhere - I always walk in those Keen Newport trekking sandals!!!).

2017-06-09 11.23.32.jpg

2018-01-29 09.23.52-2.jpg

Now, I also made a trailer for my Aussie Camino pal, Jenny. I used a small cycle trailer as the base. I removed the connecting to the bike pole, then added metal corner plates at the front to reinforce the box. I then used aluminium poles - caravan awning poles - on the sides. The first connection to the box is a swivel bolt so that the first length of pole simply swivels back out of the way. Each side the aluminium is in two sections with simple bolt and wingnut fastening (weirdly, none of the bolts ever work loose!!). At the end of each of these drawbars I attached copper plumbing pipe. Copper as it is easy to bend with a pipe bender whereas aluminium snaps if you try to bend it, and these tubes slide into the aluminium tubes and are also fixed but adjustable. Now, as the box and the therefore the load is directly over the axle the box has to be level and this is made a simple adjustment by just pulling the copper tubes further out or pushing them in as this raises and lowers the final horizontal section.
The poles have webbing straps with a clip and this is simply clipped to a padded hip belt. I also added a bicycle bell!! The hand grips are actually grips for metal detectors. I fitted four small d rings for attaching bungey cords (shock cords) across the top and a standard 50 litres rucksack cover fits well as the weather cover.
Here the pics - apologies for poor quality. Later I added a removable crossbar to the drawbars to give rigidity, shown in one photo.

2017-08-30 17.55.32-4.jpg

IMG_20170911_164612627.jpg
and folded up with all the bits packed away into the box - I added a handle! - for transporting.

2017-08-30 17.55.32-2 - Copy.jpg

Now, if you decide to make your own this is the main, the principal thing! One HAS to start from here - the load has to be directly over the axle.
The Americans commonly use a single wheel straight board trailer that clips to a waist belt but this is an awful design! First, that single wheel makes it inherently unstable and, secondly, half the trailer and load weight is on the hip belt - you might as well wear a rucksack. The whole thing with a hiking trailer, which was obvious to me - and is why I made the one for Jenny - is that the load has to be balanced over the two wheel axle, nowhere else. When it is balanced thus there is no weight on the body, it is like it isn't there.

I have now bought another cycle trailer as there is an idea that I would like to try out. It seems to me that there may be no need for the long handles, that one could connect the trailer with a simple swivel mount bolted to the rear of the hip belt and then one could be completely hands free - now that I have the new cycle trailer I will be working on that design soon!!

Jenny is coming over to the uk in June and she and I, with our trailers, will be walking from Pamplona, about the 20th is best guess - if you see us stop us and try one or both of them out!!

Any questions, any at all, please do ask!
 
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Camino de Santiago of the Canary Islands
The officially recognized Camino de Santiago on the Canary Islands!
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Anamiri

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
I am quite fascinated by them as well. I haven't tried one yet. but the idea appeals to me. I have a dream of walking from one end of NZ to the other, and I think a trailer might make that possible for me. I'd like to do it when I'm 65 as a retirement challenge.
We have a trail called Te Araroa that covers the length of the country, with a ferry trip between the islands. But it has little infrastructure and in some places is very rugged, and there are long distances between places. I have done parts of it, a week here and there.
My aunt ran the length of NZ about 25 years ago, doing about 80kms a day. She did that with a friend and had the support of a camper van driven by one of their partners to sleep in. They ran on roads.

I think the trailer would make it possible for me to do it on my own, without support. l'd follow Te Araroa, but also use local roads (not main roads) in places.

Can you walk easily with poles as well?
If not using poles do your arms touch the trailer poles when they swing?
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Anamari - yes, you can use poles. No, one's arms naturally swing outside the draw poles, which are close to and below the hip belt. The draw poles on both trailers are webbing buckle connected to the hip belt so no hands are necessary to control the trailer .. but it can become a habit to hold them when going over really rough ground, merely because they are there - though the trailer would cope whether one held them or not .. and on steep descents one finds oneself leaning backwards and resting forearms on those bars, very much like sitting back comfortably in an armchair! but one has no real need to do so so using poles is not the slightest problem if one chooses to use poles .
 
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JennyH94

Pilgrim in progress
Past OR future Camino
CF - sections and whole (2012-2019) and part VF (2017)
The hiking trailer David made me (affectionately christened "Spot", as in 'loyal canine companion' and also due to the reflectors on the box part of the trailer) gave me back my walking pilgrim life. After a cycling injury in 2015 where I broke my shoulder blade and collarbone and had surgery to pin and plate the collarbone, I was unable to carry a pack. Despite the pack being properly fitted, the shoulder strap still rubbed on my collarbone, despite having a sheepskin seatbelt pad to cushion it, which was painful after a short period of time.

Spot has accompanied me on two caminos so far - one to Spain - Burgos to Rabanal - last June and then in September/October on part of the Via Francigena (Aosta to Villafranca in Lunigiana) in Italy.

My Spanish camino was a dream - no problems at all. As David has mentioned above, with Spot I experienced all the benefits of walking without a pack - sometimes in very hot weather - I maintained good energy levels throughout each day despite temperatures in the high 30's/low 40's.

The Via Francigena was another story - the mountain goat tracks, with boulders (not just rocks) on many of the paths, were just too much to pull a hiking trailer over. Some of the mountain tracks were narrower than Spot, with sheer drops to one side and nothing to grip on, on the high side - downright dangerous. I walked with my friend Sally and we ended up following the cycle route for a good part of the time we walked together, some of the time on busy roads which represented their own set of problems. I walked this part of the VF without doing enough research - had I realised what I was attempting I would never have agreed to go. Having said this, I would love to return to the VF and do a modified version avoiding the dangerous paths - it has its own very special sacred 'magic' that takes hold of one and stays with one.

On the undulating and flat parts of the VF, walking with Spot was an absolute joy, as it was in Spain. I am so grateful to David for giving me the ability to walk again as a pilgrim, through the creation of Spot. Spot joins David, Wheelie and me once again next month, on those ancient Spanish pilgrimage paths - we hope to see you on The Way!

Here's a photo of Spot "triumphant" at the top of the Cisa Pass on the VF -

IMG_4540.jpg

Cheers from Oz - Jenny
 
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HedaP

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances starting SJPdP Sept/Oct 2015, April/May 2017
Both trailers look fantastic. Well done, David, for making a trailer. I’m impressed. Your explanations remind me of a recently published fiction book about the camino called Two Steps Forward by Graeme Simsion and Anne Buist. Not the best book I’ve ever read about the camino but you might find the bits about making and using a trailer interesting. BTW you were smarter than the fictional pilgrim because you made your trailer with two wheels not one.
Buen camino to you and Jenny.
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Both trailers look fantastic. Well done, David, for making a trailer. I’m impressed. Your explanations remind me of a recently published fiction book about the camino called Two Steps Forward by Graeme Simsion and Anne Buist. Not the best book I’ve ever read about the camino but you might find the bits about making and using a trailer interesting. BTW you were smarter than the fictional pilgrim because you made your trailer with two wheels not one.
Buen camino to you and Jenny.

Ah! That book! I read it too, unfortunately until about page 100 I thought it another docu story and then I realised it was fiction - that trailer drove me crazy! Single wheel under the framework? Could never have worked! too unstable and unwieldy and load too high - and putting suspension on the wheel assembly? Really? then the writer has it running off down hills when unattended when it would have been nearly on its side and unable to move.
Drove me crazy! and then I realised that it was fiction writers inventing this, not an engineer in any way at all .. the ridiculousness of the design he and she invented almost ruined the book for me!!
 

MinaKamina

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Jacobspad 2017
Great pictures and so good to see that you can combine a hiking traielr with the use of poles. That remains one of my big questions and it may well be that I do not find peace until I've tried it myself. Well, anything that prevents me from hitting the 'Add to cart' button at Radical Design is worth it, I guess.... ;)

I like how you added the tubes for the umbrella and the poles, David. Radical Design might include those in their design and name them after you. They do not have them yet, but they do sell a great patch for trailer hikers:

image_42.jpg
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Want that patch!! I did write to Radical with feedback, good and bad, and included photos but am still waiting for them to reply. The tubes work really well - easy to reach too. Peace won't come until you try one, the experience is enlightening!!

Stairs? Ah, easy-peasy. Going up you just walk up with it behind you (after you have unclipped the waistbelt!!!) and the wheels just roll over the step edges. Going down, well, depends if they are indoors steep our outdoors gentle. Indoors one puts the trailer in front of you and just walk down. Outside I just kept it clipped on and strolled down.
The whole trick on descents and outdoor steps is to keep the pace really slow and steady, not to allow speed to pick up - but if all goes pear one can always just sit down and the trailer will stop.

Saying that - on wet and slippery steps and steep descents I would always detach and keep it in front of me so that I could just let go if something went awry.

This is a video of a chap in the Cairngorms (that is in Scotland) - two things - firstly he finds no need to hold on to the trailer, and secondly, some of those paths are very narrow, rough, rocky, and the trailer just rolls over them.

 
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HedaP

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances starting SJPdP Sept/Oct 2015, April/May 2017
Ah! That book! I read it too, unfortunately until about page 100 I thought it another docu story and then I realised it was fiction - that trailer drove me crazy! Single wheel under the framework? Could never have worked! too unstable and unwieldy and load too high - and putting suspension on the wheel assembly? Really? then the writer has it running off down hills when unattended when it would have been nearly on its side and unable to move.
Drove me crazy! and then I realised that it was fiction writers inventing this, not an engineer in any way at all .. the ridiculousness of the design he and she invented almost ruined the book for me!!
That book drove me crazy too but not because of the trailer. More because all the situations were so contrived. It was almost like the authors had read this forum and picked out a selection of our more memorable incidents, included a few things from other books, added a cast of international characters to appeal to a wider audience and then cobbled it all together using a technique already used by another pair of Australian authors who wrote about their real camino. But I still read it to the end. :p:p:p
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
That book drove me crazy too but not because of the trailer. More because all the situations were so contrived. It was almost like the authors had read this forum and picked out a selection of our more memorable incidents, included a few things from other books, added a cast of international characters to appeal to a wider audience and then cobbled it all together using a technique already used by another pair of Australian authors who wrote about their real camino. But I still read it to the end. :p:p:p


and then the finale when all was sorted, all loose ends tied up ( so like real life - not), pilgrim friends appearing in borrowed monks habits to wheel him the last few miles - I ended up shouting at the page, but I too read it to the end!
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
This looks interesting, seems to correct some of the problems of the Radial Design...


I do like the Hipstar but it has been in 'pre-order' stage for over a year now and I don't know when they will move from the prototype into mass production. The weight is the same, perhaps a little less, as other trailers - 5 to 6 kilos and is based on the concept I go on about, that the weight has to be over the axle with tiny bias forward for stability.
When will they market it? how much will it be? will it be global and will there be spares? don't know but I do like the design.
 

Patrick2by4

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2016
Honestly, after spending a few hours looking at different hiking trailers, it seems pretty easy to built. I think I will just get a few aluminum tubes with various connectors, two light weight wheels, an axle assembly and a padded hip belt. I figure I can build this for less than $150 and be able to fit it all in a duffle bag or even a carry on bag.
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Patrick - true - though quick release stub axles are preferable for dismantling quickly. for the frame square section tubing is better as it fits more solidly together and you can add flat strip cross bracing where it is needed. You will have to work out exactly how your drawbars are going to connect to the frame, how you can adjust them for height, and how they remove or swivel back along the frame for dismantling.

The 'various connectors' are the only difficult part of the build ... locking but adjustable tube brackets so that you can get the drawbars at your waist horizontal, telescopic lock connectors - the tip here is to go online and find a wholesaler of window cleaning equipment - their extending poles are strong and can easily be cut down to size, there are various brilliant brackets, also strong and all of it dirt cheap too.

The best design for me (I speak from trailer building hair pulling out experience here! :) ) is a flat platform trolley, wheels in the middle (outside of course but halfway along the platform) - this way you have a great packing load base and the weight is directly (and easily) kept over the axles.
You can screw on small D hooks so that you have bungey (elastic straps) points all round the trailer.
You will find that an elasticated rucksack cover works perfectly to protect the load.

Weight will be somewhere between 5 and 6 kilos but you will find it will cost you about £150 at the least - 200 dollars?

Wheels are a problem - well, finding them is! you can get plastic 16 inch BMX wheels and they work quite well and are light, or look for wheels dedicated to cycle trailers .. they tend to be spoked wheels and either 16 or 20 inch (you will find going for 20 inch will add a kilo and they aren't needed - though look much more cool.

A great way of getting started is to look on 2ndhand sites and Ebay and buy a worn out cycle trailer - an aluminium one with square tubing (not mild steel). All the seats and cover and cycle drawbar can be cut away, which will leave you with a platform frame already having a pair of quick release wheels.
You can cut the frame down to the size that you want then drill and bolt it all back together again.

Then all you really have to do is to sort the drawbars and how to connect them.

With my most recent trailer I connected them by fitting T pieces to the trailer. Bars lock bolted at the bottom so that they swivel, then swivel them up and run a bolt through the top hole of the T - Voila!!

See pic -

IMG_20190211_124715.jpg


I started with this - (the axles ended up in the middle of course!).

trailer 1.jpg

and here is the platform I made by cutting down and rebuilding that old cycle trailer ... also shows one of drawbars folded back and one of the angled bars that gives the horizontal handles (window cleaning equipment!!

IMG_20190211_124942.jpg


and here is the completed trailer - I gave up on the Wheelie design!!

trailer a.jpg

Enjoy!!
 
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JohnMcM

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Some, and with luck, some more.
Hi all - hiking trailers are mentioned here and there so thought I would put a post up with some info and some pics and also details of the one I made.

Any questions, any at all, please do ask!

David,
If I look at your photos and compare them with mine. It seems obvious to me I still have some way to go to make my trailer in construction, as lightweight as yours.

Buen (trailer-tugging) Camino
 

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Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
A "Tourigrino" trip once Covid has passed, so 2023
David,
If I look at your photos and compare them with mine. It seems obvious to me I still have some way to go to make my trailer in construction, as lightweight as yours.

Buen (trailer-tugging) Camino
You could try trimming down the spokes a bit (with a spokeshave of course).
 

Patrick2by4

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2016
Very nice. I was looking at the weight difference between 3/4 emt tubing in steel and aluminum and it looks like steel is about 20% heavier. But since it is only for the frame, it will be about 1 1/2- 2 lbs heavier overall. The price difference is $11 (steel) vs $62 (alum) for 20 ft. Since I won't be doing the camino for a few more years (I have to retire first), I have plenty of time to fool around with this idea. My arthritic knee and hip will thank me for this cart. I plan on walking only about 7-9 miles a day (as my joints tell me).
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
That would certainly keep the price down. A lot of the fun is in the planning and designing. (and costing!).
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Hi - thought I might revive this post as I am now making a new trailer, my Mk4 design.
A simple and light 'ladder rack' style, with the wheels a little ways in from the end, to allow for weight over axle when it is lifted up, 360cms diameter non-pneumatic clip-release wheels - if it works as I expect it to - I made a timber prototype for testing and doing design tweaks, I may start small scale production, though once built it will first need some severe 'out there' testing ...

... and I will need a name for it - I still like S Cargo (escargot, French for snail) but a pun isn't a good idea really - if anyone can come up with a Fab name for my Camino hiking trailer I will send them two Camino drawstring backpack bags!! - for evenings when leaving the refugio to keep your important things with you - also great as a laundry bag, or out at home - two of these!!

s-l1600.jpg


There are a few designs already out there (I don't include any mono-wheel designs as they leave half the weight on the body and are unstable - horrid things).
The Wheelie - beautiful and well engineered, but terribly expensive, not quick to fully dismantle for transport (or going into a refugio) and the bag is useless for Camino (and doesn't remove without completely dismantling the trailer).
The Hipstar - interesting and clever hi-tech design but years later he is still not in production. He is still taking pre-order deposits but still hasn't yet even set a selling price - might never happen.
The Mottez - nearly there with the design, but a bit heavy, drawbars end at the wrong angle and too far back, too wide, all Amazon reviews say that it falls apart when used.
Trekkers Friend - clever simple idea. Way back there was a two-wheel foldaway contraption to strap to a suitcase, this is similar ... you strap the wheels (on an axle) to your pack and use hiking poles as drawbars. Has limitations - you need a spare set of hiking poles really, and I don't think hiking poles make good drawbars, they are not long enough and there is no control at the body end. Your pack can get caught up in the wheels if not careful, but the simplest functional idea out there at the moment.
And then there is my Camino Trailer Mk4 - but I haven't built it yet ;).

So .. I was wondering if in the past two tears anyone had gone ahead and made a trailer, or perhaps bought one that I haven't heard of?

thanks - and Buen Camino! (soon).
 
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t2andreo

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
David:

Hello out there. I am still following Igor at Hipstar and feeding him ideas. I even suggested that he work backwards from a maximum check-in size piece of luggage (square duffel) that would hold the collapsed Hipstar trailer and other gear - like your rucksack with all the prohibited from the cabin items in it. I sent hm a bunch of web links to source viable examples.

As, but one example: https://www.eaglecreek.com/shop/cla...-wheeled-duffel-110l-ec0a3xvz?variationId=299

The maximum linear dimensions must add up to less than 62 linear inches, or about 157 cm. this is the sum of the length, width and height. Using the above example, the measurements quoted are 30 inches by 14 inches by 13 inches. Adding these up, you get 57 linear inches. This bag even when full, qualifies as regards size. Maximum weight is another issue entirely.

I used the above bag as an example as it is available globally. However, I have sourced better, rectangular, nylon duffel bags through Amazon.

For example:


A bag like this can be checked, mailed to your destination from your starting point. The length (27 inches) is an issue if building a collapsible trailer to fit. But, this can be engineered using adjustable length pull rods / poles.

I had to explain to Igor at Hipstar that many of us travel from another continent to Europe to start our pilgrimages. We typically have a one checked bag allowance. We needed a trailer that would fit together with other stuff. That is why an adjustable, ladder design with quick-detachable 14 inch wheels fits the bill.

There are many features of the Hipstar design that can be adopted, not copied, for your next design is ideal.

For a name - how about the "No Load Hiking / Biking Trailer" - presumes a bike hitch is available. Use one that is already commercially available and adapt the "No Load" to attach to it.

Alternatively (for names):
  • "Weightless Wonder" (neutral weight distribution when used)
  • "Nature Rambler"
  • "... Carry On" - (as in the famous UK signage) The ellipsis is to presume whatever you wish to insert - but is part of he name "... Carry On."
  • "Hiker's Little Helper" - Play on the line from the Rolling Stones song
  • "Dapple" - the name of Sancho Panza's donkey.
I have lots of ideas.

Hope this helps. it is good to be among the living.

Ultreia!

Tom
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
David:

Hello out there. I am still following Igor at Hipstar and feeding him ideas. I even suggested that he work backwards from a maximum check-in size piece of luggage (square duffel) that would hold the collapsed Hipstar trailer and other gear - like your rucksack with all the prohibited from the cabin items in it. I sent hm a bunch of web links to source viable examples.

As, but one example: https://www.eaglecreek.com/shop/cla...-wheeled-duffel-110l-ec0a3xvz?variationId=299

The maximum linear dimensions must add up to less than 62 linear inches, or about 157 cm. this is the sum of the length, width and height. Using the above example, the measurements quoted are 30 inches by 14 inches by 13 inches. Adding these up, you get 57 linear inches. This bag even when full, qualifies as regards size. Maximum weight is another issue entirely.

I used the above bag as an example as it is available globally. However, I have sourced better, rectangular, nylon duffel bags through Amazon.

For example:


A bag like this can be checked, mailed to your destination from your starting point. The length (27 inches) is an issue if building a collapsible trailer to fit. But, this can be engineered using adjustable length pull rods / poles.

I had to explain to Igor at Hipstar that many of us travel from another continent to Europe to start our pilgrimages. We typically have a one checked bag allowance. We needed a trailer that would fit together with other stuff. That is why an adjustable, ladder design with quick-detachable 14 inch wheels fits the bill.

There are many features of the Hipstar design that can be adopted, not copied, for your next design is ideal.

For a name - how about the "No Load Hiking / Biking Trailer" - presumes a bike hitch is available. Use one that is already commercially available and adapt the "No Load" to attach to it.

Alternatively (for names):
  • "Weightless Wonder" (neutral weight distribution when used)
  • "Nature Rambler"
  • "... Carry On" - (as in the famous UK signage) The ellipsis is to presume whatever you wish to insert - but is part of he name "... Carry On."
  • "Hiker's Little Helper" - Play on the line from the Rolling Stones song
  • "Dapple" - the name of Sancho Panza's donkey.
I have lots of ideas.

Hope this helps. it is good to be among the living.

Ultreia!

Tom

Hi Tom - thanks, will go through your points ...

I disagree with there being many Hipstar design ideas that can be copied. The only one useful is his moving to a proper hip belt with detachable webbing fixing straps to give a form of suspension - and I gave him that. Everything is expensively over-machined and over-designed - there is nothing there for me whatsoever - sorry.

Re travelling by aeroplane and baggage sizes and allowances - I have to admit that I know nothing about this as I do not fly, ever. I do know that when my daughter flies she takes two really big and heavy suitcases with her plus an overhead bag (I assume that the locker above the seat takes a specific size and weight bag??). So in fact one can take any number of bags? Just that it costs more?

Re making a trailer to fit aeroplane allowances - I get that but have no idea what it really means :D and to my shame had not even thought about it, even though you have mentioned it to me before - an error on my part- so I guess that should be factored in in some way. The alternative would be to have a trailer delivered and waiting for a pilgrim to arrive and they then ship it back to me from Santiago - one-Camino trailer rental, as it were.

I haven't finalised exact sizes yet (I'm a few cms here and there to snag down on) but my guess is that collapsed down for transport mine would be 66 cms long (26 inches) by 50 cms wide (20 inches) by 25 cms high (10 inches) so I guess this fits well into your volume inches maximum?
And I would either buy a specific lightweight zipped bag for it or have them made to fit, I could then have them screenprinted with the company name (caminotrailers.com) and trailer name (at the moment The S-Cargo). Those are guesstimates and I expect the final "package" size to be a little less all round. I can't tell you the weight yet. The thing is, that trailer transport bag needs to be strong for baggage handling but really light as I think it would be better carrying it on the trailer to allow for changes of plans when on Camino. The alternative? Jenny in Sydney buys a cheap case and puts her trailer, Spot, into it and then packs the case with her other things. On arrival she discards the case by gifting it (at her first hotel I think), then does the same for her return journey. My understanding is that there are bubble wrap machines at airports? One could bubble wrap it for the journey for safety?

I have no plan to adapt it for bicycles - there are cycle cargo trailers already out there specifically made for highway use.
We have corresponded re trailer design so I think that you already have a good idea of my design, even without seeing it. (I don't want to put up design info or pics until mine is ready for sale, for obvious reasons).
The Mk4 will be a stripped down and light trailer specifically for Camino .... strong, reliable, simple to set up and collapse for transporting, but no frills, no gimmicks, no gadgets ... just a simple light trailer that does one job - removes weight from the back onto the trailer - oh, and it will be cheaper than any other proper trailer on the market.

Re names - thanks for the suggestions - I had thought of Oté ... silly really .. a hiking trailer is really a modern version of a donkey - so Donkey Oté = Don Qixote 😂?

I think that ideally a name has to be something one can mention in conversation and have it recognised - no one says vacuum cleaner, they say Hoover ... and no one says the Radical Design Trekking Trailer, they say the Wheelie - so am thinking along those lines - though S-Cargo is in the lead!

Something like this??????

s-cargo logo 3_renamed_22357.jpg

I have also thought of
the Wayfarer
the Navigator
the Walk-Easy
the Hike-Easy
the Camino Caddy
etc etc - driving me crazy!!! hahaha
 
Last edited:
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
@David, I love your S-Cargo, especially with the snail picture included.
Also, I like Camino Caddy.
Maybe it's because I am Camino Chrissy.🤷 😄

haahha - I could name it the Camino Chrissy (and you could sue me! 🤣)

Thing about the snail - it is carrying its home .. and on Camino I guess that is what our backpacks are .. so on a trailer? S-Cargo!
 
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haahha - I could name it the Camino Chrissy (and you could sue me! 🤣)

Thing about the snail - it is carrying its home .. and on Camino I guess that is what our backpacks are .. so on a trailer? S-Cargo!
Yes, S-Cargo is perfect...I doubt there is a more perfect name! Send me the drawstring bag cuz I've given your original name my stamp of approval.🤣😅🤣...just kidding of course!
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
Hi Tom - thanks, will go through your points ...

I disagree with there being many Hipstar design ideas that can be copied. The only one useful is his moving to a proper hip belt with detachable webbing fixing straps to give a form of suspension - and I gave him that. Everything is expensively over-machined and over-designed - there is nothing there for me whatsoever - sorry.

Re travelling by aeroplane and baggage sizes and allowances - I have to admit that I know nothing about this as I do not fly, ever. I do know that when my daughter flies she takes two really big and heavy suitcases with her plus an overhead bag (I assume that the locker above the seat takes a specific size and weight bag??). So in fact one can take any number of bags? Just that it costs more?

Re making a trailer to fit aeroplane allowances - I get that but have no idea what it really means :D and to my shame had not even thought about it, even though you have mentioned it to me before - an error on my part- so I guess that should be factored in in some way. The alternative would be to have a trailer delivered and waiting for a pilgrim to arrive and they then ship it back to me from Santiago - one-Camino trailer rental, as it were.

I haven't finalised exact sizes yet (I'm a few cms here and there to snag down on) but my guess is that collapsed down for transport mine would be 66 cms long (26 inches) by 50 cms wide (20 inches) by 25 cms high (10 inches) so I guess this fits well into your volume inches maximum?
And I would either buy a specific lightweight zipped bag for it or have them made to fit, I could then have them screenprinted with the company name (caminotrailers.com) and trailer name (at the moment The S-Cargo). Those are guesstimates and I expect the final "package" size to be a little less all round. I can't tell you the weight yet. The thing is, that trailer transport bag needs to be strong for baggage handling but really light as I think it would be better carrying it on the trailer to allow for changes of plans when on Camino. The alternative? Jenny in Sydney buys a cheap case and puts her trailer, Spot, into it and then packs the case with her other things. On arrival she discards the case by gifting it (at her first hotel I think), then does the same for her return journey. My understanding is that there are bubble wrap machines at airports? One could bubble wrap it for the journey for safety?

I have no plan to adapt it for bicycles - there are cycle cargo trailers already out there specifically made for highway use.
We have corresponded re trailer design so I think that you already have a good idea of my design, even without seeing it. (I don't want to put up design info or pics until mine is ready for sale, for obvious reasons).
The Mk4 will be a stripped down and light trailer specifically for Camino .... strong, reliable, simple to set up and collapse for transporting, but no frills, no gimmicks, no gadgets ... just a simple light trailer that does one job - removes weight from the back onto the trailer - oh, and it will be cheaper than any other proper trailer on the market.

Re names - thanks for the suggestions - I had thought of Oté ... silly really .. a hiking trailer is really a modern version of a donkey - so Donkey Oté = Don Qixote 😂?

I think that ideally a name has to be something one can mention in conversation and have it recognised - no one says vacuum cleaner, they say Hoover ... and no one says the Radical Design Trekking Trailer, they say the Wheelie - so am thinking along those lines - though S-Cargo is in the lead!

Something like this??????

View attachment 102390

I have also thought of
the Wayfarer
the Navigator
the Walk-Easy
the Hike-Easy
the Camino Caddy
etc etc - driving me crazy!!! hahaha
I defer, acquiesce and bow to your position. No harm no foul. 🤓
 

Mycroft

Active Member
Hi all - hiking trailers are mentioned here and there so thought I would put a post up with some info and some pics and also details of the one I made.

The American military conducted a series of tests on moving soldiers and their heavy packs. Rear packs, front and rear packs, trailers. They found that using a trailer used 80% less energy expenditure - 80%!! - but, for some weird reason they pushed their trailers instead of having them attached to a hip belt and pulled along behind.

First off - no, they never get stuck or bogged down, they bounce over all terrain, are easy to maneuvre, aren't a problem at refugios nor on public transport. It is difficult to explain how easy it is to use a trailer, it is one of those "you must try it to know" situations. The absolute joy of having no weight on the back - and no sweaty back! - walking upright and casually and the trailer just coming on behind with seemingly no effort at all. True, one cannot beat the laws of physics and going up a steep hill one can feel the trailer, but at a tiny fraction of what it is like to do that hill wearing a pack. Compare it to this .. carrying a loaded bicycle and wheeling one along - the difference is similar.
Also, they are safe. There is a big 'click to release' buckle on the hip belt - one click and one is separated from it. Though really, if it became ungainly on a truly steep descent all one would have to do is to sit down!!

Currently I use the Wheelie, from Radical Design. They offered it to me at one quarter price when they found out that I do first aid on Camino and need to carry a lot of supplies. Originally I declined as I didn't believe that I deserved it, but they pointed out that they would get good advertising from me having one, so I agreed. It is a great trailer, beautifully engineered and made and will last a lifetime, definitely mine, I'm 70 ;) - but I found the bag that comes with it awkward and cumbersome. It has one big front and one big rear storage space so anything small you put in disappears down to the bottom! Also, it is not easily removable, one has to take the frame apart! and, it does not have all the outer small pockets we are used to on Camino. This means that one has to dig around and remove bags of things to go upstairs in a refugio - a real pain. So I removed the bag and chose a rectangular tube shaped rucksack, the UK made Yellowstone - fab pack - and with the addition of some webbing belts made it so that it is easily fitted securely to the frame but removes in seconds. I also changed the hip belt for a lighter one and made new webbing connectors.
This is how I have it now - though I do also have a smaller removable first aid 'reaction bag' that I drop down over the handles (and a big first aid sign and a small solar panel).

First pic is as it came, with the addition of tubes for a walking pole and umbrella/sun parasol and the second with my pack adaptation. As you can see, I am not a young fit person!!
Note bicycle bell!! (and re footwear questions elsewhere - I always walk in those Keen Newport trekking sandals!!!).

View attachment 41995

View attachment 41996

Now, I also made a trailer for my Aussie Camino pal, Jenny. I used a small cycle trailer as the base. I removed the connecting to the bike pole, then added metal corner plates at the front to reinforce the box. I then used aluminium poles - caravan awning poles - on the sides. The first connection to the box is a swivel bolt so that the first length of pole simply swivels back out of the way. Each side the aluminium is in two sections with simple bolt and wingnut fastening (weirdly, none of the bolts ever work loose!!). At the end of each of these drawbars I attached copper plumbing pipe. Copper as it is easy to bend with a pipe bender whereas aluminium snaps if you try to bend it, and these tubes slide into the aluminium tubes and are also fixed but adjustable. Now, as the box and the therefore the load is directly over the axle the box has to be level and this is made a simple adjustment by just pulling the copper tubes further out or pushing them in as this raises and lowers the final horizontal section.
The poles have webbing straps with a clip and this is simply clipped to a padded hip belt. I also added a bicycle bell!! The hand grips are actually grips for metal detectors. I fitted four small d rings for attaching bungey cords (shock cords) across the top and a standard 50 litres rucksack cover fits well as the weather cover.
Here the pics - apologies for poor quality. Later I added a removable crossbar to the drawbars to give rigidity, shown in one photo.

View attachment 41997

View attachment 42006
and folded up with all the bits packed away into the box - I added a handle! - for transporting.

View attachment 41998

Now, if you decide to make your own this is the main, the principal thing! One HAS to start from here - the load has to be directly over the axle.
The Americans commonly use a single wheel straight board trailer that clips to a waist belt but this is an awful design! First, that single wheel makes it inherently unstable and, secondly, half the trailer and load weight is on the hip belt - you might as well wear a rucksack. The whole thing with a hiking trailer, which was obvious to me - and is why I made the one for Jenny - is that the load has to be balanced over the two wheel axle, nowhere else. When it is balanced thus there is no weight on the body, it is like it isn't there.

I have now bought another cycle trailer as there is an idea that I would like to try out. It seems to me that there may be no need for the long handles, that one could connect the trailer with a simple swivel mount bolted to the rear of the hip belt and then one could be completely hands free - now that I have the new cycle trailer I will be working on that design soon!!

Jenny is coming over to the uk in June and she and I, with our trailers, will be walking from Pamplona, about the 20th is best guess - if you see us stop us and try one or both of them out!!

Any questions, any at all, please do ask!
David, please clone yourself and send the clone to me!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You are wonderful!!
 
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I know the idea is sort of dedicated to camino users, possibly even Camino Frances users. Maybe you should get it tested and reviewed by people who do other types of trek, especially those less paved, I. E Pacific Crest, Pennine Way, Kungsleden, just as three examples. Why limit yourself to what would be a tiny proportion of a market that could be waiting for your ideas.

P.s. Use a strong waterproof nylon or net base instead of anything solid, and use bungees to hold a users own backpack in place, cuts costs and weight.
 

Chris99

New Member
Past OR future Camino
None yet, soon hopefully
Hi - thought I might revive this post as I am now making a new trailer, my Mk4 design.
A simple and light 'ladder rack' style, with the wheels a little ways in from the end, to allow for weight over axle when it is lifted up, 360cms diameter non-pneumatic clip-release wheels - if it works as I expect it to - I made a timber prototype for testing and doing design tweaks, I may start small scale production, though once built it will first need some severe 'out there' testing ...

... and I will need a name for it - I still like S Cargo (escargot, French for snail) but a pun isn't a good idea really - if anyone can come up with a Fab name for my Camino hiking trailer I will send them two Camino drawstring backpack bags!! - for evenings when leaving the refugio to keep your important things with you - also great as a laundry bag, or out at home - two of these!!

View attachment 102347


There are a few designs already out there (I don't include any mono-wheel designs as they leave half the weight on the body and are unstable - horrid things).
The Wheelie - beautiful and well engineered, but terribly expensive, not quick to fully dismantle for transport (or going into a refugio) and the bag is useless for Camino (and doesn't remove without completely dismantling the trailer).
The Hipstar - interesting and clever hi-tech design but years later he is still not in production. He is still taking pre-order deposits but still hasn't yet even set a selling price - might never happen.
The Mottez - nearly there with the design, but a bit heavy, drawbars end at the wrong angle and too far back, too wide, all Amazon reviews say that it falls apart when used.
Trekkers Friend - clever simple idea. Way back there was a two-wheel foldaway contraption to strap to a suitcase, this is similar ... you strap the wheels (on an axle) to your pack and use hiking poles as drawbars. Has limitations - you need a spare set of hiking poles really, and I don't think hiking poles make good drawbars, they are not long enough and there is no control at the body end. Your pack can get caught up in the wheels if not careful, but the simplest functional idea out there at the moment.
And then there is my Camino Trailer Mk4 - but I haven't built it yet ;).

So .. I was wondering if in the past two tears anyone had gone ahead and made a trailer, or perhaps bought one that I haven't heard of?

thanks - and Buen Camino! (soon).
Hi David,

Yes, I think SCargo or the variations are a great idea for a name.

It is very difficult to get overseas from Australia ATM due to the pandemic. However I recently did a 305 km walk here that is as similar as possible to a Camino - it was in Queensland and involves walking between towns, either on rail trails or back roads. I camped about half the time and stayed in accommodation about half the time. I did it in 10 days. The Trekker's Friend carried my pack the whole way, which made it easy. You can read about it at https://trekkersfriend.com/walks-with-the-trekkers-friend/ .

Cheers,

Chris Lowe, inventor of the Trekker's Friend hiking trailer
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
I know the idea is sort of dedicated to camino users, possibly even Camino Frances users. Maybe you should get it tested and reviewed by people who do other types of trek, especially those less paved, I. E Pacific Crest, Pennine Way, Kungsleden, just as three examples. Why limit yourself to what would be a tiny proportion of a market that could be waiting for your ideas.

P.s. Use a strong waterproof nylon or net base instead of anything solid, and use bungees to hold a users own backpack in place, cuts costs and weight.

Hi Jim - well, my only interest is the Camino, re trailers, and I have no desire to set up some big operation selling to everywhere - plenty of other trailers out there doing that. I have seen so many struggling pilgrims, over-heated and exhausted that it is more of a 'mission' really. If I go ahead I will only build one as I sell one - I would expect just a few - is more of a fun project than any sort of business idea. Just something simple, light, and strong (and cheap). I might even just make half a dozen and offer them for rental.

Re your p.s. - yes, you would think so, wouldn't you. But I have tested those ideas and the pack creates a downward bulge which alters the balance. Also, to use something like that needs a stronger frame, which is heavier - so it doesn't really work. Bungies cannot be adjusted to the right tension and as they are elastic they move all the time and stretch eventually whereas webbing click release is the same weight, adjustable, and better in all ways.

I must admit that were I buying a trailer for the Camino I would go straight to the Trekkers Friend - I have researched trailer designs and it really is the best design out there for a Camino. Really light, right size wheels at the right span. Packs down small for transporting, not expensive. Only difference I would make is to then buy the longest extending hiking poles I could find so that the trailer was 'complete' for me and I could still use my own poles if neccessary, such as were I injured.

Buen Camino!
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Building my Mk4 trailer now (Mk4 is the 'light' and have also designed a bigger 'max' Mk 5, to be built later) .. but still working on a name.

Stuck at S Cargo .....
and then ....
Escargot
Carryall
Carte Blanche (another pun ;) ) - though I would have to paint it white
Explorer
Freedom
Liberty
Nomad
Pack pal
Pack mate
Packer
Pioneer
Rambler
Roamer
Rover (JennyH98 in Aus named her trailer (my Mk1) as it followed her like a dog – Spot :D )
Shadow
Sherpa
Traveller
Travois
Vagabond
Voyager
Wanderer
Wayfarer

to offer just a few .... 😂😂
 
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Corned Beef

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
C. Norte Sept/2022
Playing around with google translate came across "Big Urpil" (bi gurpil) which in Basque is "two wheels".

Endless possibilities using GT
 
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Past OR future Camino
Future
Building my Mk4 trailer now (Mk4 is the 'light' and have also designed a bigger 'max' Mk 5, to be built later) .. but still working on a name.

Stuck at S Cargo .....
and then ....
Escargot
Carryall
Carte Blanche (another pun ;) ) - though I would have to paint it white
Explorer
Freedom
Liberty
Nomad
Pack pal
Pack mate
Packer
Pioneer
Rambler
Roamer
Rover (JennyH98 in Aus named her trailer (my Mk1) as it followed her like a dog – Spot :D )
Shadow
Sherpa
Traveller
Travois
Vagabond
Voyager
Wanderer
Wayfarer

to offer just a few .... 😂😂
Hi all
I’m hoping to do the Camino next year and I’d love a hiking trailer. 2022 now and still no sign of the Hipstar 🥹. My skills don’t stretch to metal work so I might ask a bike refit shop to make one for me … some way to hire them out at the start of the Camino- maybe South of the Pyrenees 😉 -would be excellent. Enjoyed reading the thread! Thanks
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Hi all
I’m hoping to do the Camino next year and I’d love a hiking trailer. 2022 now and still no sign of the Hipstar 🥹. My skills don’t stretch to metal work so I might ask a bike refit shop to make one for me … some way to hire them out at the start of the Camino- maybe South of the Pyrenees 😉 -would be excellent. Enjoyed reading the thread! Thanks
I think that Igor of Hipstar may never actually sell his trailers - I may be wrong, I hope that I am. He has been taking "deposits" from potential customers for years now and his recent crowd funding campaign raised over $73,000 ... however, scroll through the conversations on the funding page and you will see that he writes "The goal of the current crowdfunding campaign is to raise funds to complete the product design, packaging, bill of materials, purchasing inventory, etc." - so the money raised isn't to be able to start building and shipping them at all, he still, after all these years, hasn't sorted the design so that it actually works .... very sad. I could go on about the design faults, faults that he won't let go of but it would be both rude and unfair to do so. I did write to him in 2020 with design ideas for him to make a simpler version that would actually work, suggesting that he if he got those out into the market he could work on his faulty hi-tec versions later but he just went into denial, also sad.

Lizaqua, do you live in the UK?

I finished my Mk4 trailer some months ago - decided on S-Cargo .... is light and strong, weight tested to 23 kilos but could easily carry more than that, instantly adjustable to all heights, completely dismantles in about two minutes, lays flat and goes into a bag. A backpack can be reversed on it and still strapped properly down so the whole can be carried on one's back ... and when I next do get to go on Camino I will be using it.
I had originally thought of making them to order but decided not to.

Here a couple of pics (my old pal Dave, testing it)

trailer 1.jpg trailer 2.jpg
 
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cf (2), de la plata, cp. (2003 -2018)
The hiking trailer David made me (affectionately christened "Spot", as in 'loyal canine companion' and also due to the reflectors on the box part of the trailer) gave me back my walking pilgrim life. After a cycling injury in 2015 where I broke my shoulder blade and collarbone and had surgery to pin and plate the collarbone, I was unable to carry a pack. Despite the pack being properly fitted, the shoulder strap still rubbed on my collarbone, despite having a sheepskin seatbelt pad to cushion it, which was painful after a short period of time.

Spot has accompanied me on two caminos so far - one to Spain - Burgos to Rabanal - last June and then in September/October on part of the Via Francigena (Aosta to Villafranca in Lunigiana) in Italy.

My Spanish camino was a dream - no problems at all. As David has mentioned above, with Spot I experienced all the benefits of walking without a pack - sometimes in very hot weather - I maintained good energy levels throughout each day despite temperatures in the high 30's/low 40's.

The Via Francigena was another story - the mountain goat tracks, with boulders (not just rocks) on many of the paths, were just too much to pull a hiking trailer over. Some of the mountain tracks were narrower than Spot, with sheer drops to one side and nothing to grip on, on the high side - downright dangerous. I walked with my friend Sally and we ended up following the cycle route for a good part of the time we walked together, some of the time on busy roads which represented their own set of problems. I walked this part of the VF without doing enough research - had I realised what I was attempting I would never have agreed to go. Having said this, I would love to return to the VF and do a modified version avoiding the dangerous paths - it has its own very special sacred 'magic' that takes hold of one and stays with one.

On the undulating and flat parts of the VF, walking with Spot was an absolute joy, as it was in Spain. I am so grateful to David for giving me the ability to walk again as a pilgrim, through the creation of Spot. Spot joins David, Wheelie and me once again next month, on those ancient Spanish pilgrimage paths - we hope to see you on The Way!

Here's a photo of Spot "triumphant" at the top of the Cisa Pass on the VF -

View attachment 42550

Cheers from Oz - Jenny
Brilliant as ever! I've made 5 so far and binned them all but the idea never dies:) Want to do the plata with one so I can carry a tent and stacks of water, plus good mat and bag. The older I get (84) the less the distance I can walk and less the load I can carry. The trolley would give me back my freedom. I aint beat yet! Keep on truckin and buen camino.

Samarkand.
 

David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Is this for slow walkers? Or are you making a meal of it.

Ah, you got the pun! Well, is sort of S shaped, carries cargo and a trailer is for those not going stupid fast with minimal pack ... and it is one's 'home', as is the shell on a snail .... defintiely wouldn't want to try and eat it, even with a butter and garlic sauce 😂
 
Past OR future Camino
Future
I think that Igor of Hipstar may never actually sell his trailers - I may be wrong, I hope that I am. He has been taking "deposits" from potential customers for years now and his recent crowd funding campaign raised over $73,000 ... however, scroll through the conversations on the funding page and you will see that he writes "The goal of the current crowdfunding campaign is to raise funds to complete the product design, packaging, bill of materials, purchasing inventory, etc." - so the money raised isn't to be able to start building and shipping them at all, he still, after all these years, hasn't sorted the design so that it actually works .... very sad. I could go on about the design faults, faults that he won't let go of but it would be both rude and unfair to do so. I did write to him in 2020 with design ideas for him to make a simpler version that would actually work, suggesting that he if he got those out into the market he could work on his faulty hi-tec versions later but he just went into denial, also sad.

Lizaqua, do you live in the UK?

I finished my Mk4 trailer some months ago - decided on S-Cargo .... is light and strong, weight tested to 23 kilos but could easily carry more than that, instantly adjustable to all heights, completely dismantles in about two minutes, lays flat and goes into a bag. A backpack can be reversed on it and still strapped properly down so the whole can be carried on one's back ... and when I next do get to go on Camino I will be using it.
I had originally thought of making them to order but decided not to.

Here a couple of pics (my old pal Dave, testing it)

View attachment 124238 View attachment 124239
Hi
Yep, I live in mountainous Suffolk!
 
Past OR future Camino
Future
Hi
Yep, I live in mountainous Suffolk!
The Hipstar was the first trailer I came across and it looks to me that it’s only advantage is that it claims to obviate the push-pull tug as you walk along. Which would be nice but I imagine you would quickly get used to it and be able to ignore it- it can’t be worse than a pack jogging on your back!

Keep up the inspiring thread!
Elizabeth
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
The Hipstar was the first trailer I came across and it looks to me that it’s only advantage is that it claims to obviate the push-pull tug as you walk along. Which would be nice but I imagine you would quickly get used to it and be able to ignore it- it can’t be worse than a pack jogging on your back!

Keep up the inspiring thread!
Elizabeth

Ah, sorry, no - as we are bipeds no trailer can obviate the 'push pull' ... each step pulls the trailer forward but there is a gap when one foot is in the air and the trailer drops back ... if we had four legs we would be fine (well, except when trying to buy trousers) ... but it is obviated to a large extent by the use of webbing straps connecting the drawbars to the hip belt which act as very good shock absorbers (a tip I gave Igor at Hipstar that he used) and is almost unnoticable.
No, the problem is the type of trailer ... the best design is a horizontal cart with load over the central axle .. this is very stable .... angled trailers (and they are all angled trailers, including my Mk4) as they are a compromise design (not a cart!) have a tendency to pivot up and down as you walk ... this can be lessened by the angle of the trailer .. but too vertical and it wants to fall backward so madly pivots as you walk, too low and there is a lot of weight on the hips, which you don't want - a mono trailer leaves half the load weight on the hips!!! - Igor has gone to some considerable lengths to lose this problem by inventing his pivoting shock absorbers along the drawbars, but unfortunately these don't do the job and also break easily and is probably why he cannot get into production, they don't seem to work (I also think that he has his drawbars angle wrong).

The 'answer' is to have a load platform with a base for the bag that is fairly deep and to place the axle brackets for the wheels slightly forward along the trailer so that when the trailer is lifted more upright the load pivots to be close to over the axle, this removes most of the pivoting as it starts to mime the stability of a cart to a degree - mine is designed like this.
If you look at the photo again you will see that my axles are slightly forward of the end of the trailer and so if the heaviest items are at the bottom of the pack then when raised for use the weight is then directly over the wheels, so any pivoting is minimal. Run an imaginary line vertical from the centre of the wheels and you will see that the load centre of gravity is the lower half of the pack load, so if carrying items such as tents and/or cookers and spare water it is loaded down there.

trailer 1.jpg

but, an angled trailer is always a compromise as it isn't a horizontal cart ... the benefits are that it is much lighter and quickly packs flat.

Elizabeth - you live in Suffolk? well, your trailer problem could be solved ... if I am not using my S-Cargo on Camino next year when you go you can borrow mine!
 
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Past OR future Camino
Future
Mamma mia! That generosity above and beyond!🥹thank you so much. If I can keep up my training and get work to agree a sabbatical then I could well accept your amazing offer… but then that would mean I wouldn’t meet you on the Camino!
 

Bristle Boy

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
Ah, sorry, no - as we are bipeds no trailer can obviate the 'push pull' ... each step pulls the trailer forward but there is a gap when one foot is in the air and the trailer drops back ... if we had four legs we would be fine (well, except when trying to buy trousers) ... but it is obviated to a large extent by the use of webbing straps connecting the drawbars to the hip belt which act as very good shock absorbers (a tip I gave Igor at Hipstar that he used) and is almost unnoticable.
No, the problem is the type of trailer ... the best design is a horizontal cart with load over the central axle .. this is very stable .... angled trailers (and they are all angled trailers, including my Mk4) as they are a compromise design (not a cart!) have a tendency to pivot up and down as you walk ... this can be lessened by the angle of the trailer .. but too vertical and it wants to fall backward so madly pivots as you walk, too low and there is a lot of weight on the hips, which you don't want - a mono trailer leaves half the load weight on the hips!!! - Igor has gone to some considerable lengths to lose this problem by inventing his pivoting shock absorbers along the drawbars, but unfortunately these don't do the job and also break easily and is probably why he cannot get into production, they don't work (he also has his drawbars angle completely wrong).

The 'answer' is to have a load platform with a base for the bag that is fairly deep and to place the axle brackets for the wheels slightly forward along the trailer so that when the trailer is lifted more upright the load pivots to be close to over the axle, this removes most of the pivoting as it starts to mime the stability of a cart to a degree - mine is designed like this.
If you look at the photo again you will see that my axles are slightly forward of the end of the trailer and so if the heaviest items are at the bottom of the pack then when raised for use the weight is then directly over the wheels, so any pivoting is minimal.

View attachment 124320

but, an angled trailer is always a compromise as it isn't a horizontal cart ... the benefits are that it is much lighter and quickly packs flat.

Elizabeth - you live in Suffolk? well, your trailer problem could be solved ... if I am not using my S-Cargo on Camino next year when you go you can borrow mine!
David...you are brilliant. Everywhere needs a David.
Just a thought...with a little modification could not the handles house a pool cue (or two). 🤔
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
Have you thought about selling the plans so others can make them (or have them made locally)?

Ah, thanks David but I don't really think that way (possibly why I am always poor).
I would be quite happy to give the plans to anyone who wants them, the only problem being that there are no plans, only in my head.
The difficultly with specific plans would be the sourcing of parts as each country has different sources ... Hhmmm ... I will think on it ...
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
1989
Ah, thanks David but I don't really think that way (possibly why I am always poor).
I would be quite happy to give the plans to anyone who wants them, the only problem being that there are no plans, only in my head.
The difficultly with specific plans would be the sourcing of parts as each country has different sources ... Hhmmm ... I will think on it ...
I thought about suggesting that you put a PDF of the plans in the Resources section, but I figured that would be presumptuous so I went with the suggestion as originally written.
 

Bristle Boy

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2022
I thought about suggesting that you put a PDF of the plans in the Resources section, but I figured that would be presumptuous so I went with the suggestion as originally written.
I have every confidence in @David helping you out David T. I have been a follower (and fan) of David's assistance and kindness to fellow pilgrims on this forum.
I hope I'm not being presumptuous but the plans for the square wheeled trailer (that doesn't need a handbrake and doesn't roll backwards) and the walking poles that double as pool cues (or should that be queues) are also in the post to you as we speak.
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
I thought about suggesting that you put a PDF of the plans in the Resources section, but I figured that would be presumptuous so I went with the suggestion as originally written.

Not a bad idea - never even occurred to me .. doing drawings, measurements, and instructions is pretty straightforward .. the problem would be sourcing the various components ... the axle hangers, for instance, are re-purposed roof building joist hangers then cut in half .. would they be the same globally? The drawbars where fitted to the trailer are bolted through swivels, made by using swivel castor wheels, removing wheel, and replacing with a bolt .... the clamps on the trailer that the lower bars fit into when transporting but when the lower drawbars are swivelled round for use they then become the clamps for the bar ends that keep all rigid and at the right angle are modified from bicycle handlebar phone holder brackets.
The drawbars are actually crutches ... but I looked at a lot of crutches, ruined two pairs (cutting the hand grips off, etc) as they weren't right, until I found ones with exactly the right adjustable length and the correct angle - and the angle from trailer bed has to be 'just so', not straight, not too angled, to get the right 'lift' of the trailer .. would someone be able to shortcut this learning process and get the right ones first time? .... so I could do the plans and supply photos of each item but the builder would have to be pretty inventive (or resourceful) to find those items in their country or to find exact alternatives ... so is indeed a little tricky.

The alternative would be to make a 'kit' with all the parts and holes drilled on the trailer, but as parts need to be modified to make a kit I might as well just make the whole thing :D:eek::oops::D
 
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David

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
First one in 2005 from Moissac, France.
David...you are brilliant. Everywhere needs a David.
Just a thought...with a little modification could not the handles house a pool cue (or two). 🤔

@Bristle Boy .... .. have found a 36" pool table .. all I would need to do is to drill each leg and fit wheels .. drill the ends of the cues and fit them as drawbars and there you are, sorted - a Camino pool table trailer, just for you!! 😂 😂
61VaHi9sHhL._AC_SL1500_.jpg
 
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