Onward Cargo Bike Week: The Long John Cargo Bike

Continuing on with the Cargo Bike theme this week, today’s post is about another two-wheel cargo bike, the “Long John”. A Long John-style cargo bike is a two-wheeled cargo bike with the cargo area between the steering tube and the front wheel. A bakfiets could be said to be a a kind of Long John bike – it has it’s load-bearing area between the steering and the front wheel. Not all Long John bikes though can be said to be bakfiets as not all Long Johns have a box in front – most simply have a platform upon which you can haul whatever it is you choose.

A Bullitt Long John made by Larry vs Harry and belonging to Copenhagen Cyclery in Chicago

Long John cargo bikes are sorta like the flat-bed trucks of cargo bikes.  Larry vs Harry has been making their modern version of the Long John bikes like this pink one since 2008 though this style of bike has been around since at least the 1930s when it got its’ start in Denmark. For a family-friendly review of Bullitt cargo bike and a comparison to some other cargo bikes take a gander over on Totcycles.com – they took a weekend-long demo ride of a Bullitt cargo bike in Portland back in 2010 and wrote up a lengthy review.

Velorbis makes their own version of the Long John bike which you can also check out at Copenhagen Cyclery here in Chicago.  You really get a sense of the long front cargo space in this picture.

A Velorbis Long John cargo bike out in front of their store on Milwaukee Avenue in Wicker Park

There is an American bike manufacturer up in Eugene Oregon that makes some very cool-looking long john cargo bikes called Cetma. You can order one with or without the box.

The two sizes of Cetma Cargo bikes (photo via cyclofiend.com)

Cetma Cargo bikes with boxes (photo via cyclofiend.com)

Another company in Oregon makes long john-style cargo bikes to order (about a 3-month waitlist I believe) with or without the box, called Metrofiets.  

A custom Metrofiets cargo bike for One Revolution Bike Delivery Service in Vermont (photo via onerevolutionvt.typepad.com)

Yep, there are a lot of cargo bikes out there, and you don’t even have to go all the way to Denmark or the Netherlands to find one – people are making them right here in the US of A. And if these companies have started to make them in the United States, well, ya gotta think that they just might be on to something. Swing by the Cargo Bike Roll Call on Monday and check out some cargo bikes live and in person! See ya there!

(PS: Thanks to the great-but-not-recently-active cargo bike blog Cargobike Cult. And check out their post on Pimp My Bakfiets!)

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