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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey folks

Hope you all are well. Not around as much, new job. Annie treed her first **** yesterday, which was fun.

Wanted to post some thoughts around bike-dog accessories now that I've had a chance to compare.

I started out last year, just a bit, with this:

http://www.bikerdog.com/

It mounts to the chain stay and seat stay of your bike (i.e., the back part of the frame that carries the rear wheel). It's plastic and is screwed onto the frame with a bunch of hex screws. The extension coming off of the bike is a simple piece of flexible plastic tubing that acts as a shock absorber for your dog. This can be pulled off of your bike (you can just leave the mounting hardware on your bike so riding without your dog is easy). It comes with an extension that will clip to your dog's harness or collar. You can buy a harness from them, I did, and it's fine....though I ended up using a big fat Ray Allen patrol harness because it seemed less restrictive around the legs than most harnesses I have seen.

I got a new mountain bike a few weeks ago...my first in like 14 years (RIP Cannondale M500). This model is full suspension (FS bikes are awesome, I cannot believe how much more comfortable they make riding). The BikerDog does not fit the back of this bike. So, I went ahead and got the other attachment I see mentioned on various forums:

http://walkydogusa.com/dog-biking-product.htm

The WalkyDog people have much better product models than the BikerDog people. Italian women in bike shorts > smelly granola hippie men from Colorado.

In any case, this attachment is metal. It is quite well-built. It attaches to your seat post, under your butt, at whatever angle keeps it from hitting your leg. For example, mine is positioned at about 5 o'clock. The WalkyDog comes in two pieces. The first is the basic mount: this is collar and male end of a quick-coupling set-up. The second is a steel tube with the female coupling end, cord and snap. The steel tube has removable springs you can use to match up to your dog's height while still giving them good shock absorption.

Things to watch:

1. The BikerDog's mounting hardware--while somewhat universal--seems to (depending on your bike's geometry) mount too close to the pedals for my taste. With the plastic post in it, my right foot brushed up against it often and I had to pedal differently with it on. This is kind of annoying, but not a big deal; you're riding much more slowly with a dog on than without.

2. The BikerDog is plastic. Mine was already showing some wear, nothing bad or anything.

3. The WalkyDog's suspension is almost too stiff (I may cut some springs on mine). It's a bit creaky. Nothing really bad. BikerDog is silent.

4. The WalkyDog puts your dog slightly closer to the bike than the BikerDog. I can reach down and unhook Annie from the bike. This probably has some practical uses, but mostly just looks cool when we're trotting a long and I launch her like a missle on a squirrel or something.

4. The BikerDog is a US product, the WalkyDog an Italian one. The BikerDog guy is a really nice guy, you can call him directly and let him know what you need and he'll set you up. I have not met him but I bet he's uglier than the Italian spokesmodel for WalkyDog.

5. This is the big one: You really, really need to be able to ride a bike adequately to use the WalkyDog safely (in my opinion). I am surprised not to hear more horror stories about the product. I am an experienced rider and this thing takes me by surprise a lot. This is mostly because the thing is mounted on the seat post, so the center of gravity is much higher. Simple put, the dog can pull the bike of center and you off-balance way easier. I'm 200 pounds on a suspension bike, and I know what I'm doing, but Annie can still pull the bike off center a bit. This bugs me. Mostly because there are times when you as a rider are really vulnerable...if your dog ever critters on you, or something just happens making her bolt right...if you, say, are standing up on your pedals or in the middle of some kind of downstroke on your pedals, you may look dumb quick.

So in any case, both products have their pluses and minuses. I like them both but can't really recommend either very strongly. If you are novice biker, get the BikerDog. Assuming it fits your bike, you're much more in control of your dog.

If you do get the WalkyDog, make very sure you practice, practice, practice riding with your dog before you introduce in too many distractions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Oh yeah, one of the benefits of the WalkyDog's higher center of gravity is that you're much more aware of where your dog is at. Both gadgets put your dog about in line with your back right wheel. Because the WalkyDog is more sensitive and a bit creaky, you know if your dog has begun to slow down, etc. if your attention has strayed a bit.
 

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full suspension < rigid. Why? You go SLOW AS HELL. All that bobbing up and down going uphill is energy not pushing you forward. Buy a cyclocross for off roading, I think some of them might even be hardtails. If it gets bumpy lift your butt off of the seat. No one needs +6 inches of travel for 1/2 inch potholes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
full suspension < rigid. Why? You go SLOW AS HELL. All that bobbing up and down going uphill is energy not pushing you forward. Buy a cyclocross for off roading, I think some of them might even be hardtails. If it gets bumpy lift your butt off of the seat. No one needs +6 inches of travel for 1/2 inch potholes.
Hee-ho-ho, it's fun to read bike magazines from 1997, isn't it? :lol: It's an XC, doesn't have that kind of travel. It's a real shock and a real bike, the bobbing isn't bad at all (and it can be locked out). And you do not have my blown discs and glass shard facet joints. I love it. Feels awesome after a ride. If you have a bad lower back, I recommend FS 100%.

I don't mind the dissapated energy. I'm trying to get a workout, not trying to win a race. I"m just going out 6 or so miles max with the dog, maybe double that if I'm goofing off on trails and commute.

Kona Kikapu power > Badger physicists. Go drink some paint thinner. :lol:


Of course, wifey is thrilled that I got back into an old hobby that is at least as expensive as the dog.
 

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LOL, i started bikes around 1998, so no 97 issues for me. So if you have to lock it out, why have it? Do you lower your gears to keep an optimal (in terms of speed) cadence? I hope so, and if you do, you should lose the hideously fat and knobby tires along with the suspension and get a real bike, road or cyclocross. Leave the stump jumping and boulder traversing to the downhill folks.

Real bikes = cronometro.com OR http://spectrum-cycles.com/

Can't wait till i have time to ride again.
 

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I have tried both the Springer(similar to the first one you posted) and currently have the Walky-dog. I prefer the Walky-dog as you can see what the dog is doing better(I use a short running harness) and like the stiffer damping spring. I haven't found that the dog can pull you off centre too badly but probably would not try it with any dog that isn't familiar with running in harness. I think you are more likely to be surprised if the dog is jogging beside you versus pulling consistently(which is my goal but probably isn't what alot of people want) If you are an old-fashioned girl like me who likes toe-clips vs clipless pedals - I wouldn't reef down the straps really tight, though:smile:.... But dog powered transport being what it is you are probably going to do some dermabrasion at some time... I will only attach dogs to a sturdy beater - no way am I going to attach them to a good bike.
http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b385/sewtech/100_5553.jpg you can see the dog is fairly forward up if you use a harness

http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b385/sewtech/100_5541.jpg - Smiley is about 90 lbs and a tall dog - I don't think the Walky Dog would be as good with smaller/shorter dogs

http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b385/sewtech/100_5546.jpg - the mounting bracket is pretty small and inconspicuous.

http://i23.photobucket.com/albums/b385/sewtech/100_5551.jpg - "Smiley" says it doesn't matter what you hook him to - he just wants to go!

I wouldn't try hooking up any dog that didn't have a least some kind of basic training or a real squirrely dog to any type of bike attachment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
LOL, i started bikes around 1998, so no 97 issues for me. So if you have to lock it out, why have it? Do you lower your gears to keep an optimal (in terms of speed) cadence? I hope so, and if you do, you should lose the hideously fat and knobby tires along with the suspension and get a real bike, road or cyclocross. Leave the stump jumping and boulder traversing to the downhill folks.

Real bikes = cronometro.com OR http://spectrum-cycles.com/

Can't wait till i have time to ride again.
I don't lock it out. I like the bounce because it means I get about three more weeks out of my cortisone shots in my spine. My cadence is fine. I like the workout, I like the bike, I like not feeling like I was beaten up at the end of the ride.

Good comments, Lynn!
 

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True. I thought it was a good thing when I could not walk the next day. I will not let structural issues be an excuse for wanting FS -- Must have some Freudian complex, did his mother soothe him every time he cried?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
True. I thought it was a good thing when I could not walk the next day. I will not let structural issues be an excuse for wanting FS -- Must have some Freudian complex, did his mother soothe him every time he cried?
I'm pretty sure Freudian issues drive a lot of the enthusiasm many bikers have about hardtails.

What you are saying is like telling Chris Farley should wear New Balances because he has a tendency to overpronate. There are many more issues to consider other than foot shape.
 

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Not so -- although it may be possible, I cannot think of many issues that would change whether or not he should wear shoes that help correct his overpronated stride, can you? I do admit other issues may be significantly more important, though. Now just admit you like bouncing up and down like you are riding a rocking horse. Really, its OK :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
You are 100% right that other bikes are more efficient. So is doing barbell curls without any weight. That's the problem with reading Bicycling and Nude Malinois Monthly, Sam. You're getting a good idea of idea worlds, realities may differ. XTR components are great, for example, but I don't need them.

And in all seriousness, I don't notice bouncing around. I've dialed it in pretty well. I do notice I feel a lot better.
 

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I do know the bike is fine for most people. I just can't stand big, slow and bulky things -- maybe thats why i don't get GSD monthly?

The only thing I would absolutely toss is the toe clips, get some crank bros or speedplays if they make MTB stuff and a pair of shoes you can live with. Clipless is, by far, the greatest invention ever. Well, maybe after bibs, but I would never wear those to go for a ride w/ my dog and I certainly would not be taking rides long enough to benefit from them if I had a bad back. Anyone who pushses themselves cycling knows it is sometimes harder on your back than your legs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I just can't stand big, slow and bulky things -- maybe thats why i don't get GSD monthly?
Well, there goes the dating scene in Wisconsin for you.

I did pick up some SPDs, that was a brand new gadget for me, and yeah, they're cool. I just got a straight Shimano set-up with a pedal that has foot space on the back. Clipless pedals are fun but I don't want to be in them just for the dog and goofing around with the kids. Now I just have to get up to speed on suspension maintenance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Just get a bike that is too small by 4 inches and you can solve the back issue. This way you can have really sore wrists and triceps, which is much better really.

Suspension bikes are for pussies, so no doubt that Woody loves his.:p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p
There's a furniture-training thread with your name on it. Seek.
 

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Well, there goes the dating scene in Wisconsin for you.
Are you in MN, last time I checked that state was even fatter than WI. Anyways, they don't really pack it on too bad in college -- and most of the big ones don't like it when you weigh less than them, so if I can keep my self around 140 I dont think i'll have anything to complain about.
 

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LOL I had (still have) and ancient paramount (yes it was Schwinn but it was Reynolds 531 tubing with Nervex lugs and silver solder with all campy components - if any of that means anything anymore) with touring angles that took plenty of dirt roads.

I got quite handy at jumping over things with it. [Used to be a bicycle mechanic and did bicycle touring] - and an old Leather brooks saddle that was comfortable as hell-honest (and zero padding)

Heavy as a brick by todays standards.

On rough roads I would usally go off the seat and let my knees take the bumps. On steep mountain descents you would grab the top bar with your knees to damp frame vibration (given a full load with front and rear panniers)

Oh the dog link - had a small Welsh Terrier who would ride in a basket around town but I never took him on long trips. Too many loose dogs out there.
 

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LOL I had (still have) and ancient paramount (yes it was Schwinn but it was Reynolds 531 tubing with Nervex lugs and silver solder with all campy components - if any of that means anything anymore) with touring angles that took plenty of dirt roads.
Some losers may disagree, but Campagnolo still makes the best parts. Shimano stuff is so ugly, and i hate how you have to shift with the two levers. Anyways, a steel frame made by reynolds is still good stuff, although 853 is used now. I googled that and 853 came out around 1995 -- so how old is your bike?
 
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