Monday, 24 May 2010

Wald Rear Folding Baskets Up Close

I am being asked lots of questions about the Wald Rear Folding Baskets, so here are some details and close-up pictures:

The Wald folding baskets are perceived as practical and inexpensive, but unglamorous. People tend to put them on their old 3-speeds and beater bikes, but rarely will you find them a "nice" bike. I too would have been reluctant to install them on the Pashley. But having used these in Austria on Jacqueline, I saw that they can look elegant on the right bicycle.

Anyhow, here they are on the Pashley now, and you can judge for yourself. To answer some questions: Yes the baskets are "heavy": according to the specs, they are 2.75lb each. And no, they do not jiggle or make noise. Whether empty or full, I don't even really feel them. What's especially nice, is how integrated they are with the Pletscher "Athlete" rear rack; all together it almost looks like one unit.

The Co-Habitant carries one of those multi-use tools at all times, so he installed the baskets for me as soon as we bought them.

Each basket mounts to the rack via 3 bolt-on metal brackets (which are included): two on top and one on the bottom.

Here is the bottom one. Some people use zip ties in addition to or instead of the brackets.

The baskets lie flush with the bicycle's rear rack when folded. To unfold, you lift a metal tab on top and pull out the sides.

Then lower the bottom, click it into place, and voila!

Here is the basket transporting my workbag - which houses my laptop, documents, and about a dozen other things. The bag is very secure in there, much more so than in the front wicker basket of yore. For me, this system really works. When cycling for transportation I prefer to keep my things in my normal, favourite workbag, and then to be able to place the bag into some form of container on the bicycle. Click-on panniers that double as laptop bags or handbags don't really do it for me, because I want to be free to carry any bag I want when off the bike - including my photo bag. Of course, an additional benefit of a metal basket, is that I can leave the bike anywhere and not worry about its bags being pillaged or removed.

Here you can see the position of the baskets in relation to the rider. It's a very tidy system.

On my Pashley there is no foot strike or leg rub when pedaling, but this really depends on a bike's geometry.

The practicality of the Walds is so seductive, that I have lost my ability to tell whether they suit the Pashley or detract from its loveliness. Your honest opinion?


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