Tandem Cycling - Our first tandem commute!
Bikeforums.net is a forum about nothing but bikes. Our community can help you find information about hard-to-find and localized information like bicycle tours, specialties like where in your area to have your recumbent bike serviced, or what are the best bicycle tires and seats for the activities you use your bike for.
The wife and I had our first tandem commute this morning, in fact it was her first bike commute ever. We're lucky that we're able to do it. Her work is 7 miles from home, and mine is another 3+ beyond. Her work is slightly off my regular commute route, but I found a route that we're comfortable with and only adds half a mile or so to my commute. What a blast! This is the first time we've ridden the tandem into the city, and I find people very friendly towards people on a tandem. Lots of smiles, waves and hellos. Only down side is the single pannier left after dropping her off was too heavy; the bike was unbalanced and a bit squirrelly. I'll just have to learn to carry less when we tandem commute, or use a backpack. Anyone else have experience tandem commuting?
06-18-08, 10:19 AM
Only down side is the single pannier left after dropping her off was too heavy; the bike was unbalanced and a bit squirrelly.
I'm guessing you have not yet had two thousand people yell: "You lost someone!" at you yet...
Seriously, sans stoker, my tandem is pretty squirrelly all the time...actually, after riding a tandem for so long my single bike is pretty squirrely the few times I bother to ride it.
06-18-08, 10:20 AM
3-4 times a week, I leave work and captain the tandem 10 miles to pick up my fiancée at her shop, and then we both ride the 10 miles home. There is usually a single ortlieb on the rear rack. Aside from having to pay more attention with regards to pedal striking stoker's Looks, the bike handles fine and I enjoy getting to spend the solo time with the bike learning how it handles....
06-18-08, 10:50 AM
I have ridden our tandem solo many times. My only caution is to be aware that the rear brake is almost worthless with no stoker.
Yeah, I expected some yells like that, but didn't get any. My prepared comeback was "Not again!" I do think it's good skills practice riding solo. I also notice my solo bike, which is pretty stable, feels twitchy after riding the tandem. Good fun.
06-18-08, 11:04 AM
I also notice my solo bike, which is pretty stable, feels twitchy after riding the tandem. Good fun.
LOL it also feels like a feather, or a race car. ;) If I do a bunch of tandem riding, and then ride the single, I usually have the back wheel bouncing off the pavement on my first standing climb :D
06-18-08, 03:02 PM
You might look around for a beater bike to park at your wife's workplace and take that on to your job.
06-18-08, 05:16 PM
While not having commuted on a tandem, have ridden one solo many times even doing a couple solo difficult/long climbs. The first hundred feet feel slightly squirelly but then my rythm settles down and all is A-OK.
Make sure the back pedals are secured (velcro/bungee/or even rubber bands) so they don't clang/hit the roadway.
Rudy and Kay/zonatandem
06-18-08, 05:29 PM
I dropped-off and picked-up my stoker from the train station with the tandem the other day.... Why use the car? ;)
06-18-08, 10:47 PM
I use the tandem quite often to travel one way with the kids and come back by myself. Once I drop the stoker, the tandem feels squirrelly... for one or two blocks, but after that, it handles smoothly.
One or two panniers : I find it doesn't really make a difference in terms of handling. Worst comes to worst, get a racktrunk and store your heaviest cargo in it.
By the way, if you have steep downhills, be a bit careful, especially if the road is bumpy or wet. You have little weight on that rear wheel.
Thanks for the tips on braking. I hadn't considered how it would be easy to lose traction with the rear wheel unweighted. I got more used to riding it solo on the way home. We had to ride in a lot of bike traffic on the way home, which I was kind of nervous about, but we did fine. All the stops and starts are good practice.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.1.12 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.