PDA

View Full Version : Bob Yak Plus vs. Panniers


bikerinNE
12-02-2008, 02:29 PM
Which would you choose to tour with? Bob trailer or a set of panniers?

K'Tesh
12-02-2008, 03:17 PM
Other than the load will expand to fit the space available, why not both?

bikerinNE
12-02-2008, 08:04 PM
Other than the load will expand to fit the space available, why not both?

Weight. The BOB Yak is cheaper than a nice set a Panniers, and i think would hold more. I would think the BOB would be more wind friendly. The Panniers put the wind resistance at the sides and back, with BOB is all at the back, in the rider's slip stream?

OldCog
12-02-2008, 09:04 PM
While I've not done any touring on a bicycle (yet) --- my wife and I have done a fair amount on motorcycles. Luv my Harley. Week long treks through the West. Last year was Montana - Yellowstone - and the Tetons.

We have 2 rules
- Pack light
- And no trailers !

I refuse to ride on more than 2 wheels --- its that simple. And by that I mean keep it simple. Camp out one night then hit a motel the next.

bikerinNE
12-02-2008, 11:13 PM
While I've not done any touring on a bicycle (yet) --- my wife and I have done a fair amount on motorcycles.

....BIG... Difference when the power comes from pedals. Not to mention the speed. Touch, taste, smell, feel, hear. Even on a two wheeled power machine you lose some of those.

I hope someone can tell me a real difference.

bikerinNE
12-02-2008, 11:29 PM
While I've not done any touring on a bicycle (yet) --- my wife and I have done a fair amount on motorcycles.I refuse to ride on more than 2 wheels --- its that simple. And by that I mean keep it simple. Camp out one night then hit a motel the next.

While that is great, you're missing a big part: taste, touch and feel, as i think a bicycle can bring. I'm looking for a "real" comparison on panniers and a BOB. A motorcycle cannot ever bring a real feel to the comparison. As I've traveled with panniers, i'm looking for a comparison with the BOB. When traveling in a head wind, the panniers give great resistance, so much that it can make it hard to pedal. With a motor you have no idea. I'm sure its fun on two wheels, now make it real. Get all five. Touch, taste, feel, smell, and vision. At 55MPH, you have lost most of it. Yes, i've ridden a motorcycle. My motto, if it's got less then two rounds, i can ride it.

Imagine: Riding silent, down country roads, then look to the right into a field.... finding a few deer running next to you, then leap behind you across the road... never in a motorcycle...

scdurs
12-03-2008, 12:24 PM
I just recently purchased a Bob Yak trailer, but have not toured with it yet. I often commute using two rear panniers, so that's the extent of my experience with panniers. Four panniers might actually be lighter due to lack of trailer weight, and they may actually haul more than just the trailer alone. I wouldn't recommend stacking up too large of a load on top of your Bob trailer as it will become unstable and could cause you to lose control at high speeds. If you really want to carry more stuff, use a combination of trailer and panniers. Spread the load so you don't overload the rear wheel of the bike. Two-wheeled trailers will have less tongue weight, thus less weight on the bike. No matter what, you have to pull all the weight up the hills.

Main reason I bought the Bob was to tow behind our tandem and tour with my wife. Figure that the tandem can carry more weight than your typical bike, and the trailer will have less impact on handling behind a tandem as opposed to a single bike. We know a couple that pulled a Bob Yak for 15,000 miles on a year-long tour around the U.S. a few years ago. The trailer performed very well for them.

Zaphod
12-08-2008, 03:27 PM
I've run both panniers and the yak and here's my take.

The comparison in speed is hard to quantify. The yak itself weighs about 11 pounds if I'm not mistaken. How much does a rack weigh? Probably less.

If your trip has you attached to your gear the whole time that is a factor. The yak has a lower center of gravity and rolls like a train. The panniers make the bike feel heavy and leaden. Swaying side to side feels super sluggish with panniers. The yak also impacts side-to-side motion but it's close to centered around the rear wheel and trailer wheel. The wheel tracks quite nicely in terms of navigating around corners.

The perfect yak ride is a mountain bike ride where you roll to the campsite, ditch the gear and go for a light and fast ride for a bit, then set up camp and enjoy. Oh, another top tip for the yak (not the fancy suspended model) is you can flip it upside down, put some logs under it and you have a badass BBQ setup. I've taken the Yak up and down some rather technical mountain trails and it can handle whatever you throw at it. To confidently bomb downhill with one requires flow and a steady hand. One must not hit the brakes aggressively or change vector in a jerky way. It's possible to jack-knife the thing like an 18 wheeler if things go horribly wrong.

I think if you were to race yourself, one with panniers and one with the yak, the panniers would win by a small margin due to both rolling resistance and weight. The wind resistance difference probably does matter but not as much as the weight difference.

I agree with the poster who said to travel super light. I wouldn't take chances and not have gear for storms rolling in or repairs but I would lose anything not essential. I read an article where some friends used to lay their gear out and they took turns taking one item from the other person to lighten their load until they both agreed to stop. It's that mentality that'll get your load to the right level.

Good luck