5-8 Bike Carrier, Survey- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    5-8 Bike Carrier, Survey

    Hey Riders,
    I am a mechanical engineering student at my local university and a weekend warrior all mountain rider. I was wondering how much interest there would be in a lightweight trailer able to carry from 5 - 8 bikes with an accessory box that could hold all your gear (helmets, shoes, hydration packs, etc..) The mounts for the bikes would be so that you do not have to remove the front wheels. Thanks for the input in advance. Happy Trails

  2. #2
    ballbuster
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    Wouldn't be that hard...

    Quote Originally Posted by Welganator
    Hey Riders,
    I am a mechanical engineering student at my local university and a weekend warrior all mountain rider. I was wondering how much interest there would be in a lightweight trailer able to carry from 5 - 8 bikes with an accessory box that could hold all your gear (helmets, shoes, hydration packs, etc..) The mounts for the bikes would be so that you do not have to remove the front wheels. Thanks for the input in advance. Happy Trails
    .... to do yourself. Get some Yakima rack trays and mount them to an off the shelf no-brake simple flatbed trailer. Prolly set you back a bit over a $1k, but prolly under $2k for the whole works.

  3. #3
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  4. #4
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    No, I am wondering if there would be any interest in buying a trailer like that if there was one on the market. I have built the prototype already. I will get the pictures and post them if there is any interest. What I am doing is tring to see if there would be an market for selling these things.

  5. #5
    don't move for trees
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    There might be a market. If you can keep the cost down, and provide easy loading, and good use of space, there's a real possibility of people wanting them.
    this is what we use



    10 on the trailer, and up to 10 in the back of the truck.
    "Get a bicycle.You will not regret it if you live." Mark Twain

  6. #6
    ballbuster
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    Sure....

    Quote Originally Posted by Welganator
    No, I am wondering if there would be any interest in buying a trailer like that if there was one on the market. I have built the prototype already. I will get the pictures and post them if there is any interest. What I am doing is tring to see if there would be an market for selling these things.
    ... but you would have to make it very cost competitive.

    Basically, if you want to start a business... any business... one of the big factors in being successful is being able to do something nobody else does at a price nobody else can do... or wants to do, and deliver it to a big enough market with enough profit on your end (and the retailer's end), so you can actually make enough money at it to make it worth your while.

    It seems to be a bike trailer can be easily built by just about anybody... and honestly, probably is being built already by somebody. What is so different or better about your trailer than the others?

    Also, who is going to buy this? Bike clubs... shuttle services... an organization who would supply support for commuters or bike tours, maybe. How many of those buyers are really out there?

    Not trying to bag on your invention. I'm just saying these are things you should ask yourself.

    BTW, probably not a good idea to post pics if you have any really original and great ideas that are patentable... at least until you have the patent.

    I'm sure there is a market for it. The real question is can you get in on that market, and is it big enough to make it worth your while to do so.

  7. #7
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    Pimpbot, Thanks for the advice. Those are the questions I am asking myself. You could say that this post is a bit of market research. I am doing this as part of a senior project. The way that it came about is that I built a bike trailer with my Dad and some buddies for our own personal use. When we drove it around we had several people approach us and ask where they could buy a similar trailer. So I am just sending out some feelers about the potential market.
    As far as pictures of the prototype goes, US patent laws give priority to "first to invent" not "first to file". So papers that I will write this semester for class count as documentation that I am first to invent. So I won't be posting the pictures until the whole idea is documented in the school system, but after that is done, I can post pictures and be protected.

  8. #8
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    I'm no patent attorney, but I think BKnight's picture of bike racks on a trailer is probably plenty of prior art to keep you from getting a patent on much of anything, combining a rack and a trailer.

    Not to mention the "non-obvious" provisions in patent law....

  9. #9
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    I cant really see how BKnights bikes are secured to the trailer but from what I can see our trailer is nothing like his. The geometry of the racking system would be the source of the patents. You would be surprised how many different bike rack geometries have a patent on them, and from what I have found so far (only several hours of patent searches) I can't find a rack geometry like it. I seriously don't think getting the patent would be the problem. my real question is would it be worth it. Is there enough of a market out there to sustain a buisness making trailers for MTbikers that will hold 5-8 bikes easily.

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  11. #11
    don't move for trees
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    I guess I should have stated this. The trailer I showed was just what our club built and use, we do not produce them nor have a patten on it. all it is a flat trailer with rails, and 10 tire bike racks mounted on.

    For your trailer, make it so you don't have to take the front wheel off, much easier to just keep every thing together and not worry about putting your bike together at the beginning of every run
    "Get a bicycle.You will not regret it if you live." Mark Twain

  12. #12
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    BKnight,
    I agree taking the front tire off every time you have to trailer the bike is annoying. Our trailer is built so you do not have to take the front tire off. The design works great. Better than we antisapated actually. Does you trailer utilize racks that you just bought, like a Yakima rack or something or have you built your own mounts?

  13. #13
    don't move for trees
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    yea, they're just purchased racks, every one bought their own, so they are guaranteed a spot on the trailer, I'm trying to remember the name of the company, but its slipping my mind. Thule makes one like it, but its a cheaper, less known brand, but holds up great, haven't seen any problems with them
    "Get a bicycle.You will not regret it if you live." Mark Twain

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