Parking a Trike or Two

Trikes take up more space than bicycles, at least more width. Finding a good place to park and lock a trike can be a little challanging but we have found some tricks that make trike parking easier. 

Infrastucture

Standard spacing for the standard inverted U racks is just a little tight for parking trikes. The Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals has published guidelines on the best practices for bike parking. Regular bicycles are generally take up a 6 foot by 2 foot space. That gives spacing between inverted U racks of 24 minimum to 36 prefered. 

In addition to spacing, the height of the inverted U should be considered. Many racks are too tall and interfere with the handlebars of trikes. Because trikes are heavier and harder to move sideways than bicycles, being able to move directly into and out of a parking space is preferred. 

Here are two large adult trikes parked on one inverted U rack. Note that the back wheels are beside the rack and the front is angled to be able to lock the frame and a pedal to the rack. This seems to take up the least amount of space and allows other racks to be used as well. These racks are too tall and interfere with the handlebars causing some effort to get the trikes into place. It is possible that angling the inverted U racks at about 45 degrees would allow the trikes to park straight in reducing the skill necessary to park. 

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Here is a pair of trikes parked at a little different angle but with the same result. Locking on this rack was done nearer the back wheels with the back wheels inside the rack.

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Using a cable lock for long term storage is risking the loss of the trike. A U lock is a better choice if it is placed so it is difficult to get something into the opening to pry the legs apart. We like to include the rack, the frame and a crank arm if possible. In the photo below you can see a good arrangement. 

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Long term parking should be inside. If you don't have a storage space large enough and have to park in a public infrastructure then it is important that there be multiple levels of security. Video cameras that are monitored, a locked cage around the area and individual U locks on the bikes with solid inverted U racks generally cause someone to find an easier target. 

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Finally, when you want to secure your trike while you run into a restaurant or museum for a little while. Look for a place where people can see the trikes and then lock them the best way you can. Here is a picture of four trikes locked togeher around a light pole. Locking the wheels together is not the best practice for long term storage but it works for a quick run inside.

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 Take care of your trike and it will take care of you.

Trike'N the Neighborhoods

What's it like riding a trike in the neighborhood?

My son bought me a trike for Christmas. I found it sitting under the tree, assembled, with a sheet over it, when I walked into my daughter's home early Christmas morning. She lives about two and a half miles from me in the Windsor Park Neighborhood in Austin just north of the Mueller development where I live in the farthest south building.

While it was not a total surprise, seeing this ruby red trike was a huge delight. Getting on it after Christmas brunch was a little tricky. The street humps in the middle and at first I found it a hard to steer straight.  Even though I soon got the hang of it, my daughter rode it to my place at Wildflower Terrace. She was able to easily ride up the one hill between her home and my apartment building.

When I went out to ride the first time, it only took about 10-15 minutes of experimenting on the street behind my building to get the hang of it. Then, the fun began!

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Rather than feeling like an old person who needed to ride a trike, I felt younger, freer, more joyous. Sometimes I would tell folks that I must have a body memory from my little girl first trike and the freedom it gave me to be on my own, to steer my own way, to go at my own speed.

After walking for exercise for many years, I found it boring and the same ol' same ol' radius of things to look at. Being able to go farther and ride through our Lake Park was just one of the joys. So many people waved and said, "great bike!" Or trike.

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“Little kids shouldn’t have all the fun!”

Trike'N Tips: Trikes on Two Wheels

We are starting a random series of blogs about how a trike is different than a bicycle and how you can make a trike work better for you. One of the things that Ani has discovered is that simply tilting the trike up on two wheels makes it much easier to move around and to get over small barriers such as the edge of a curb. Here is a short video showing one curb at the Mueller Ella Wooden pool. YouTube video

We have a three adult trikes and two TrikeShaws and we take them out in Mueller frequently. We go to HEB, to the two pools and to the retail area where Bed, Bath and Beyond and Home Depot is located. Come try out the trikes. We can help you get familiar with the special handling properties of trikes or we can rent you a trike for a few days. 

It is time to bring trikes to Mueller and let people enjoy the freedom that comes from being able to move around without an automobile.

 

Our dreams.

We envision trikes of all shapes and sizes being used routinely for transport and transportation in local neighborhoods. It is time for all ages and abilities to enjoy the benefits of active living. Trikes can be used for transport, retail and recreation; frequently all three in the same trip. Trikes can be used by children, people with disabilities, the elderly and everyone who wants to move easily around the neighborhood without getting the car out. 

We are going to be building this site over the next couple of weeks. We hope you enjoy the ride with us.