I first saw this strange device back in March 2010 when I got my Brompton S3L-X.
I was searching for accessories and on a Spanish website I spotted this strange looking add-on cross-bar.
I contacted them but they were halting production and it was impossible to get this nifty looking child seat anywhere. Until now that is. It looks like it has gone back into production and they have listed a UK supplier as http://BikeFix.co.uk [update: see below]
The strangely named ‘IT Chair’ is steel in construction with one clamp and two folding rubberised footrests. The clamp fastens to the seat post and the other end slots in just behind the crossbar hinge. Once fastened it feels pretty solid and the addition of a small passenger makes it even more so. The seat clamp wasn’t rubberized so as a temporary fix I added a strip of rubber cut from an inner tube.
With the ‘IT Chair’ attached and no passenger I have to ride with knees slightly apart as I have a large comfy seat attached to it. It’s not uncomfortable to do so and I feel a larger seat is safer. With a little passenger your knees are a little wider but I got used to it quickly and as my lad is probably a little young to be doing any major miles on this, it felt safer having him cradled between my legs and arms.
Folding the bike up with the ‘IT Chair’ attached takes a few more seconds than normal but it’s easy enough and works well. Folded size is a little larger but only a tiny amount and not enough to affect practicality.
Costing £210, (without the seat) the ‘IT Chair is not cheap but at the moment it’s unique.
I really enjoy using it and the lad totally loves it. Even though it’s certainly more precarious than the larger bolt -on bike seats that cocoon a child and strap them in. Bear this in mind should you want to buy one. It goes without saying that any child riding on one of these needs to wear a helmet, be capable at holding on to the handlebars and have a good sense of balance.
That said, I wouldn’t hesitate to use it for short trips with the lad, especially as it means we have the freedom of stashing the Brompton in the car to get to new and interesting places to explore.
UPDATE: The IT Chair is now called the Pere and still available in Spain: http://www.milianparts.com/en/products/pere/ but I hear there are possible some UK possibilities coming soon.
Subscribe to my newsletter at Documentally.com/Backchannel