Tandem Cycling - da Vinci Joint Venture vs. In-2-ition
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09-09-07, 08:16 AM
My wife and I have been tandeming for three years. We have a Burley Rumba and are thinking about plunging into a da Vinci tandem. We are interested for two primary reason: Fit and the independent coasting.If we can get over the the sticker shock we (I) are debating following upgrades:
Headset to Chris King ($105)
Carbon front fork ($400)
da Vinci crank vs base vs Sugino Fuse ($175) from the base steel fork
Any insight will be greatly appreciated. I am working with a LBS and they are great but it would be nice to get some other input. We ride about once a week in (Michigan) 30-70 miles. We are not into the rides for speed. I’m 6’4” and experienced single rider, my stoker is 5’6” and only rides the tandem. Total weight ~400#.
09-09-07, 09:13 AM
If this will be your "uber tandem" and the last one that you'll likely buy for the foreseeable future, strongly consider getting it built the way you'd like it to be, instead of cutting corners.
You did a great job of getting your feet wet with the Burley as your first tandem. Having made that reasonable investment and spent 3 years amortizing it, you have apparently decided that tandeming is something you and your spouse enjoy. Moreover, your choice of the daVinci and the upgrades you're already looking at suggest that you are now tandem enthusiasts instead of a simply a couple who own and ride a tandem (there is a difference).
So, here's the acid test: If you go with the mid-priced In-2-ition component package instead of the high-end Joint Venture component package, will you:
1. kick yourself for not opting to go with the higher grade components?
2. most likely upgrade to higher-end components within the first year of ownership?
3. be satisfied that you got the bike you want within your budget and simply wait to upgrade components as the other ones need it?
If you answer 1 or 2, I'd strongly consider making the investment up front. You'll be happier with your purchase and it will ultimately cost you less than if you make the upgrades on your own shortly after the point of sale and end up with all kinds of extra parts sitting around. I call the latter Harley Davidson Buyer's Syndrome or HD-BS... It's the most expensive way to buy something.
If you answered 3 then you're probably OK. Just be sure you're not a kidding yourself otherwise you'll fall victim to that HD-BS.
09-09-07, 11:29 AM
Mike if you are going to get a Chris king headset may as well get the Steelset (at least the lower cup) since the insert is 25mm long as oppose to only about 10mm on the stock aluminum version and will keep you headtube away from any ovalizing specially prone on tandems and downhill bikes.
Congratulations on the new bike, the Davinci's are also my dream machines.
09-09-07, 05:46 PM
Frank in Troy, MI:
After 3 years of riding as a duo you seem to know your needs.
Suggest you 'bite the bullet' and buy the best equipped daVinci you can afford, including the upgrades you listed. Look upon the daV as 'an investment in your continued good health!'
When you get it, go do a few laps around Stoney Creek for us or go north of the Romeo area . . . believe the Slow Spokes of Macomb still do a century out there in the fall.
Todd and the gang at daV are great tandem builders.
Pedal on TWOgether!
Rudy and Kay/zonatandem
09-11-07, 04:13 PM
My wife and I have a Joint Venture and absolutely love it!!! If you're willing to spend some $$ on a great bike, don't skimp! We even went so far as getting S&S couplers and are finally traveling with it this year. We generally ride locally in Colorado, but are taking the tandem to Spain next month.
I can't say enough about our Da Vinci tandem. We constantly get complements about our sweet ride. Say hi to Brian and Todd - they're great!
09-12-07, 04:29 PM
I truly enjoy our Joint Venture. It has exceeded my expectations in the fun factor. Although, I think and hope almost any tandem would have done this for us. I am continuously enthusiastic about the ICS with my inexperienced and weaker child stokers. They just do not have to worry about pedaling and keeping my cadence.
My wife and I tried a few other traditional tandems and enjoyed them. She was positive about us getting a tandem from those rides. She really, really enjoyed the DaVinci though. It was her attitude toward riding an ICS tandem plus the obvious benefits for the kids that made it a clear choice for us.
I like the component mix and completely appreciate the quality components. However, I would be just as happy on lesser components if they shifted just as well. If you are concerned about weight, you could look at lighter tandems, lighter wheels and lighter fork(as you are). The only other performance components serve only to shift and brake.
What are those components worth to you? What is the price difference (something like $1000 if I remember). Amortize that over how long you think you might keep the bike. I generally ride my bikes for 10-15 years. I am okay with $100/year for the bling and smile factor. I will gladly shave that off the budget amount for a new car. It is mostly for my satisfaction, but to a much lesser extent there is also the group membership component. Don't upgrade it to impress others though, upgrade it to impress yourselves. Any group of people worth riding with won't care what kind of bike or components you have, just that you have a love of cycling.
For us I think we would answer to #3 for TG's questions. So why do we have a Joint Venture? Because we found a used one and that is what was available.
09-13-07, 12:35 AM
I have one of Todds bikes and love it. I ended up getting the Chris King headset, S and S coupled and their cranks. Its a great bike, one that I think we will keep for a long time (read for as long as we ride). Our team is just a tad less than you folks, but we carry a lot on tours, we went with the steel fork. After visiting the Santana folks and not being overly impressed we drove out to see Todd and the crew.... totally different we bought and felt good about paying the money for the da Vinci. Great people to deal with. If you go with a coupled bike (strongly suggested) I would go with two 10 inch cases rather than the wheel box and a 12 inch case. Go for it ....
09-14-07, 08:37 PM
First, I want to thank everyone for their keen insight and help. Last weekend we borrowed a Davinci from the LBS here in the Detroit metro area. We loved it. It took my stoker a short time to get use to the ICS. But once she learned how it worked she performed wonderfully. Although the loaner was a tad too small for me, it still felt great. So we bit the bullet. We ordered the In-2-ion with upgraded, cranks, wheels, fork, headset and disk-brakes. I thought about couplers but I think we are at least 10 years away from those kind of trips. Since winter will be here in jut a few weeks, we opted to to take delivery next year. Now we have to sell the Rumba. We will keep pedaling until October and get it ready for sale. Once we get the new bike we will let you know how it goes. Our only choice now is the color. I will leave that up to my stoker. Take care and thanks for all of the help.
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