Bike Camper With Retro Flair

A blue work tricycle (single front wheel with platform between two rear wheels) sits on an asphalt path with trees and wildflowers in the background. A boxy, white camper with a front overhanging the bike seat is attached to the platform. It has a yellow stripe and curtains like many campers did in the 1970s. One white male is exiting the door of the camper while his brother is standing to the left of the camper by the bike seat.

As we’re approaching summer here in the Northern Hemisphere, thoughts naturally turn toward road trips. While most people do this in their car, the [Dangie Bros] built a 500 lb bike camper for their own take on the great American Road Trip.

Taking a maximalist approach not seen in most bike campers, this behemoth has a working sink, propane stove, seating area, and an upstairs sleeping area. A small window in the front of the camper opens to let the passenger inside converse with the person pedaling, and a solar panel charges a small battery for lights and a roof fan.

While the camper is very ’70s retro-chic, its lack of assist (other than the passenger getting out to push) meant that on the second day of their road trip they resorted to towing the camper behind a second bike in a pseudo-tandem arrangement. The fold out bed takes some design cues from RVs, but clearly needed more reinforcement since it collapsed partway through the night. With an e-assist and some refinements, this could be comfortable (albeit slow) way to go bike glamping.

If you’d like to try your own hand at a bike camper but do it more aerodynamically and attached to an assisted bike, checkout this teardrop trailer or this bike camper.

33 thoughts on “Bike Camper With Retro Flair

  1. Should weld another bike to the front, add a crossbar to link the steering, and do a chariot tandem type of thing. And for God’s sake, if you’re going to have a propane stove and kitchen sink you may as well throw in a scooter battery and an electric assist motor. Really cool though. Hope it’s not too windy.

    1. It seems like it (w)(sh)(c)ould be possible to add a set of pedals inside the camper that pop up through the floor for the passenger to use when boost mode is required. I mean, what’s another 8 or 10 once you’ve achieved a 500 lb bicycle?

    2. > Should weld another bike to the front, add a crossbar to link the steering, and do a chariot tandem type of thing.

      This doesn’t work as well as you might envisage (I have tried it).

      Anything with more than 3 wheels needs suspension, or one of the wheels is continually off the ground. Generally one of the driving wheels.

      Some sort of rose-jointed linkage might be an option, but retaining the single front wheel is probably better.

      However, side-by-side pedalling does seem like a more practical approach. But then making this practical seems to be missing the point.

  2. For some reason this is charming as hell. The crap that broke instantly, the fact that one person rides inside while the other does hard, hard manual labor. All of it. I truly love this.

    1. A terrible hack.

      Bad idea, poorly executed, for clickbait.

      500 lbs!
      Look at the thing. That’s terrible. I’d be embarrassed.
      What did they do, build a frame out of railroad ties, then nail the aluminum to that?

      Couldn’t even get a low enough gear into it to go up any hill. Just bad. We were better bike machanics in middle school.

    2. Lol, woosh!

      Hack: A pedaled vehicle with a passenger compartment, sometimes offering protection from the elements.

      I’d love to see this built into a VW Rabbit camper 😂

      1. Today, everything Winnebiko, Winnebiko II, and BEHEMOTH were capable of can be done with a smartphone and a small, flexible solar panel with a USB port for charging the phone.

        1. Is there a Bluetooth twiddler input device with a trackpoint or trackball? Also would love to see a Ryzen APU on a folding screen phone chassis. Because Android/IOS Tyzen etc are very walled/ incompatible with general purpose computing. (I can run Brunch project and Android apps on x86, but running x86 on my phone is . . . Not performant)

          And Google dropped Glass like a hot potato once it became synonymous with unwanted videography (should have made it without the camera). Still wish I had a heads up display.

    1. LOL, does the sail come with the DLC?

      Kidding aside i was thinking that the aesthetics is awesome but that wall at the front probably does nto help with moving that thing anywhere even with no head wind.

  3. Careless cyclists on roadways are already a menace. Let’s build a giant box to make it even worse. Brilliant. Now, stay off the roads. Stuff like this should be illegal!

      1. you mean when they blow through stop signs and ignore traffic controls while cycling around DC? or when they get pissed when they’re called out on behavior that can easily end THEM up in the hospital because they’re careless?

        They’re given bike lanes and expected to follow rules that keep them safe and from causing impediments to vehicular flow, but they ignore whatever suits them and get mad when they’re chastised. I have a camera in my car, and should an accident occur and they try to blame me, I’ll be happy to show the court exactly how they contributed fully to their own injury or demise.

        They took this thing on paths that were not designed for the bulk, so they got on the road, going DEAD SLOW. That was idiotic to the extreme.

        But sure, what a GREAT IDEA. At least the guys who build the smaller carts can pedal fast enough to MOVE.

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.