Tandem Cycling - Trek T200 or Burley Rumba
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I'm looking for a first tandem and have narrowed the search down to a 1998 Trek T200 and 2002 Burley Rumba. I will be performing a cardinal sin of bike buying and will not have the opportunity to test ride either one.:eek: With that said... based on our single bike fit both should be fine.
As far as I can tell the Trek has slightly higher end components and everything on the Burley is entry level. The Burley is going to cost little less, which I could turn around and put into upgrades as needed.
This is a first tandem. My plan is to stick with it util we cut our teeth. Once we better understand what we want out of a tandem we will likely upgrade.
So... Trek or Burley? Any feedback would be appreciated.
10-26-11, 11:39 AM
Hi - it might be helpful to say the price range for these two bikes. I am "guessing ~$750-$1K as I saw several around that as I just went thru a similar process in purchasing our first tandem.
From what I learned, Santana and Co-Motion make fine tandems and are considered by many (after reading multi posts) to be better than companies that specialized in singles and moved into tandems like Trek (You also have the super premium models like Calfee and the like but even used were not fo me as a 1st time purchaser).
I saw several nice looking Treks and C'Dale's between $1,000-$1,500 used when I looked 2 months back I saw many many Santana Arriva's and Co-Motion Speedsters between $1,200 and $1,900 that appeared to be well kept and about the same age. Theused price difference was small enough to go with what I did to a what I think was a higher end bike for not much more money. I also thought the re-sale would be easier when I do decide to upgrade.
This being said, I have read many fine things about Burley too although from what I read the Rumba is more of an entry level purchase.
Hopefully much more knowledged than I will assist you between the 2 specific bikes you listed. Like you, I did not try my bike and purchased it from a bike shop in Tuscon that had it on consignment.
Best of Luck,
10-26-11, 12:06 PM
Those are pretty comparable bikes. As originally spec'd the components are one step above on the Trek ( 105 versus Tiagra).
I'd take the one that's in better shape.
10-26-11, 12:15 PM
I agree with Merlin. Framewise, I don't think you're not going to see much of a difference and the age difference of the components may make it a wash. If you can tell, take the one that's in better shape.
The Trek is priced at $900 + cost of shipping, the Burley is $600 and close enough to home that I can go and pick it up.
Both appear to be in very good shape. The Trek has more miles, but was taken better care of. The Burley has very few miles and appears to been decently maintained.
I'm very accustom to doing my own maintenance and upgrades, so I won't mind if the bike needs. The question is if the frame is worth upgrading at all, or if the money should be saved for the next purchase?
Right now I'm leaning towards the Burley due to cost difference. More money to put to upgrades or next purchase.
I'm totally ok with this being an entry level bike. We just want to cut our teeth. Once that is done I will take the time to test ride and invest in something very nice.
10-26-11, 02:51 PM
It sounds to me like the Burley is a great deal. I suspect that the Trek is old enough that it didn't come from the factory with STI levers like the Burley, but with bar end shifters. I had a very old ('89 or '90) Duet and it had tru-temper straight gauge tubing. I am not sure if this was the case with newer entry level tandems, such as this Rumba, but it might give the trek, with its butted tubing, a subtle edge. I don't think that either bike will dissapoint you, but the Burley would get my vote.
Yup... The Trek has bar end shifters and the Burley has STI, but they are Tiagra level. When (if) the time comes to replace the shifters on the Burley I will probably go with with bar end. Its hard enough to keep STI shifters working well on a single bike; I would rather have a system that can take a little more tolerance like bar end shifters.
I know we won't be racing, and its relatively flat in my area, so we don't need STI.
I'm not sure about the tubing of the frame. I found a resource online that showed the Rumba Tubeset varying from year to year. 2006 True Temper OX Platinum, 2004 True Temper Verus butted 4130 chromoly, True Temper Tandem chromoly, etc...
Based on the color and parts spec I think the Burley is actually 2004, which would make the frame Temper Verus butted 4130 chromoly.
10-26-11, 04:46 PM
Seeing that it's to be your first tandem we'd suggest going with the less expen$ive one; also there'd be no shipping $$ for the Burley which could run into a couple hundred bucks extra for the Trek.
Have ridden many tandems/models including Trek/Burley and based on what you've stated we'd prefer the Burley.
If you like tandeming it's easier to get rid of a less pricey first tandem when you upgrade to what you want in a new(er) one.
As for STI, we are not fans of it and switched back to barcon shifters on our Zona. Less complexIity and longer life for barcons. Our Dura Ace STI was a bit problematic on front and levers died in less than 10,000 miles; barcons been on the tandem for over 23,000 miles and are hundreds of $$ less than STI.
Just our input/opinion.
Enjoy the ride TWOgether!
Rudy and Kay/zonatandem
10-27-11, 08:36 AM
I agree 100% with Zona. I have no problem with the barcons and they are simple and relatively cheap. I've had a couple of Ultegra STI levers go bad and they are not fixable. I would definetely go with the Burley and save the considerable bucks. If and when the shifters go bad (which may never happen), you can go with barcons and regular brake levers. These were actually very nice bikes with pretty decent workmanship and components. You might find that this bike serves your needs and you might decide to not upgrade!
10-27-11, 10:32 AM
Basically, you are looking at a 2:1 difference in cost......go with the Burley. If the price was really comparable, I would go with the Trek. Bill McCready, founder and president of Santana recommended the Trek T50/100/200 as a good starter tandem. The 50/100/200 have the same frame; we really like our; but we got it for $400-; then sold some of the stuff that came with it, netted for less than $300- before we started adding things.
10-27-11, 03:14 PM
I vote for the Burly. Your first tandem, if you love it, will teach you what you like and dislike for your next tandem. If you don't ride it much then there is less $$$ lost.
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