A bigger boot…

On my bike that is! I had taken a wire basket with the bike when I bought it as I wanted storage but had no real idea of what would work. After a couple of months, I had a few issues with it:

  • The pull on the steering wheel caused it to flop left/right when left on the stand, so it tended to fall over
  • Steering was quite heavy when the basket was full
  • It didn’t hold much (7kg limit)
  • It couldn’t take the pace and the mounting broke!

After looking around for a bit, and taking advice from twitter (thanks @CyclingVillage @SilverLiningOK & @DutchBikeDublin ), I settled on a Steco Ahead Front Carrier. It was frame mounted, not too expensive, and had a loading of 15Kg which is much more useful. Off I went to the Dutch Bike Shop‘s new showroom/shop in Ballymount, and Astrid had one in stock with a good, solid crate to go with it.

Fitting

The first question is would it fit? Most ‘Dutch’ style bikes have a much longer head than the Pashley, and it took a bit of fiddling to get it in place. It fits quite well in exactly one way on the Pashley, any higher and it blocks the steering, any lower and the bottom bracket catches the top of the forks (which now sport a scratch to match).

The carrier is made of steel and has a matt black finish that works well with the Pashley. It’s also reassuringly solid.

Pashley - Front Carrier detailThree hooks come with the carrier, one has a handy bend to fit around the top or bottom tube (which is essential with the Pashley), and two with different diameters for fitting around larger head tubes.

A quick tighten with a suitable wrench and it’s good to go!

Crate

Alas, the crate collided with the brake handles, giving me the turning circle of a supertanker. I’ve had to leave it off until I can acquire a longer handlebar stem.

Usage

Pashley - Front Carrier

So, as I couldn’t fit the crate, I’ve had to bungee my bag, coat and so on to the carrier itself. There’s no issue with any cargo – I took 6×2 litre bottles of water back from the shop yesterday (approx. 12Kg) with no problem at all. The carrier is very solid, and takes the weight really well. It does make the front slightly heavier and can cause the steering to ‘wobble’ slightly side-to-side , but overall, it beats the old basket hands-down for cargo. I’ve strapped my laptop bag to it and commuted to work for a few weeks now without any complaints. Next step is to get a longer stem and mount the crate!