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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 11-16-08, 12:19 PM   #1
Mr. Beanz
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Any You Guys Ride Tandem?

Haven't been able to ride so I gotta do something bike related!..We had a forum ride planned for today but it was cancelled due to excessive smoke in the area. 72 miles would have been fun. We were planning to take the tandem this time. Haven't been on it much this year but rode it a couple of times in the last two weeks. Feeling has seemed to have come back easily so we figured it would be good on the forum ride. I had it all cleaned up and waxed but no ride! We did really well last on our tandem ride last week so I think today would have been fun. Couldn't ride os I took pics instead!

If you've never been on one, give it a try if you ever get a chance. They haul arse! Climbing is a (you know what) but we've done it! Down hills are, well, nobody stays on our wheel, that's for sure! Takes a bit of practice to get in synch, but it's well worth the practice. We've hit 56 mph on the dowhill before. That was in a matter of 1/4 of a mile wihtout pedaling. Now that I think about it, too fast for comfort. Bike was super stable compared to a single but one must worry about losing the shades or helmet at this speed. I think of what might happen so haven't tried to hit a personal best on the DH, safety first when it comes to having Gina on the bike!








Didn't get a chance to ride yesterday either. Drove down to the trail for a ride. It was windy, blowing about 30-40 but what the heck, we're on the tandem. Coast was clear on the drive down. When we parked we notice the smell of smoke, almost taste it! I didn't feel safe about it knowing the area's history when it comes to fires and wind so we headed home.

On the fwy we could see where the fire was, wasn't there on the way out! As we approached our homeland, we could see that the fire had spread across the hills next to the trail we ride. Good thing we decided to run home. The cities along the trail have burned, hundreds of homes lost in local fires. FWYs are still closed. Corona, Brea, Yorba Linda, Chino Hills are all on fire. The cities we travel on the path. Some of our friends live in the areas evacuated. Hope they and their homes are ok!

About 30 minutes after the fire started. View from 30 miles away. We were back to safety. Good thing as people were turning around driving the opposite direction on fwys and offramps to change directions once the fire blocked the fwys.





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Old 11-16-08, 12:57 PM   #2
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I can't even get folks to ride their own bikes with me.
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Old 11-16-08, 02:40 PM   #3
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i think tandem would be cool.
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Old 11-16-08, 03:12 PM   #4
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interesting idea. I could do with an extra pair of legs
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Old 11-16-08, 04:02 PM   #5
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Very nice looking tandem. I've been working on my wife to convince her we "need" a tandem to add to our stable (although I'm pushing more for a new road bike for myself first - hopefully that will be within a month - then I'll get back to work on a tandem). I've been keeping an eye for a few months in case I find a deal I can't pass up but haven't found the right deal yet.

We're hit with smoke here as well so decided to help our older son get his college apps completed instead of braving the wind and sucking ash.
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Old 11-16-08, 04:09 PM   #6
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I can't even get folks to ride their own bikes with me.
Oh Dude! If you were local, I'd take you for a good hard spin! You'd like it, the tandems are fast. Of course you'd have to work your arse off but we'd be flying by the skinnies like a freight train! Not long after, you'd be flippin' them the bird as we go by like Gina does!:..but the other finger!
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Old 11-16-08, 04:10 PM   #7
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i think tandem would be cool.
They are!
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Old 11-16-08, 04:12 PM   #8
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interesting idea. I could do with an extra pair of legs

Oh yeah! We've done 4 centuries on it, very nice. One had about 6,000 of climbing, that one hurt!
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Old 11-16-08, 04:17 PM   #9
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Very nice looking tandem. I've been working on my wife to convince her we "need" a tandem to add to our stable (although I'm pushing more for a new road bike for myself first - hopefully that will be within a month - then I'll get back to work on a tandem). I've been keeping an eye for a few months in case I find a deal I can't pass up but haven't found the right deal yet.

We're hit with smoke here as well so decided to help our older son get his college apps completed instead of braving the wind and sucking ash.
We paid about $2000 for ours back in 1998! But they have gone up!

When I bought it, we didn't touch the singles for atleast a year, it was so much fun. I'd say we went back and forth for the next 5 years. The last 3 were on her new single. She developed a bunch from riding the tandem! Now she can prety much match our tandem with her single. It helps and it's fun! If I were you, I'd forget about the new roadie and go tandem, sooo worth it!........Plus she'll start wanting to vist the shops for goodies!
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Old 11-16-08, 04:29 PM   #10
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Hey Mr B - Super duper Bike. I rode on a rental upright tandem with the ex-beau near the Lake...He drove. Of course I decided I wanted to be in front. Big mistake -coul not turn the bike - and whoosh right into traffic.. So Yup - looks liek fun- but I think it may be harder to steer than other bikes. Must get the beau first then the tandem...

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Old 11-16-08, 04:44 PM   #11
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Hey Mr B - Super duper Bike. I rode on a rental upright tandem with the ex-beau near the Lake...He drove. Of course I decided I wanted to be in front. Big mistake -coul not turn the bike - and whoosh right into traffic.. So Yup - looks liek fun- but I think it may be harder to steer than other bikes. Must get the beau first then the tandem...

Regards,
Miss B
Oh yeah, takes practice but there are lots of tips on making it better. Like the person in the back (Stoker) never unclips. The guy in front (Captain) supports the bike at stops. It's actually very easy if you spread the legs and rest the crotch on the toptube. I can lean Gina side to side by doing so at stops wihtout losing control. Sounds scary at first but actually start to tickle after you get used to it!

When we stop, I must remember to use a wide stance as the Stoker in back sets the pedals for the Captain in a postion that will make for an easy takeoff. I like the left pedal at 9 o' clock. Once you get used to it, the Stoker doesn't need a reminder to set the pedals. If the Captain forgets, WHACK! So you don't forget much!

When I see a bump, I always call it out so she can lift herself off the seat. When I resume pedaling, I must remember to start with a slow steady movement in order to avoid jamming her knees. Same with stopping.

Best thing is if the Captain gets a wedgie, he only needs to stand. It is removed without removing his hands from the handlebars. Well that depends on how good of a relationship you have with the Stoker!

It's practice but COOL!
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Old 11-16-08, 04:53 PM   #12
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A tandem is a test of a relationship. I recommend going on a tandem ride with any prospective spouse.

We've had a Santana Arriva since about 1987.
We pulled a trailer with 1 or 2 kids on board for the next 8 years - a lot of great memories.
Then when my daughter was in middle school she'd ride morning rides with me before work/school. She weighed nothing, so it was like free power. Great times.
A couple years ago we did some riding in Nova Scotia - that was a blast.
It doesn't get ridden much these days due to my lower back issues - need a bent tandem now.
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Old 11-16-08, 05:14 PM   #13
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A tandem is a test of a relationship. I recommend going on a tandem ride with any prospective spouse.

Oh that's for sure!
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Old 11-16-08, 05:35 PM   #14
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Oh Dude! If you were local, I'd take you for a good hard spin! You'd like it, the tandems are fast. Of course you'd have to work your arse off but we'd be flying by the skinnies like a freight train!
A freight train with a heck of a big caboose!
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Old 11-16-08, 05:45 PM   #15
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A freight train with a heck of a big caboose!
That's ok as long as you have big fingers so they can easily them as you fly by!
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Old 11-16-08, 10:41 PM   #16
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I have a question for you tandem types. How does the stoker react to unexpected gear changes from the captain? When I ride up a hill, I'll drop down 2 or 3 cogs and immediately I'm spinning away. But if I had a stoker, she would would suddenly thrown into a faster pace.

Also, how about coasting? What if I decide to coast but the stoker is still hammering away?

It seems that a tandem is a two headed beast and would be a very frustrating experience...
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Old 11-16-08, 11:08 PM   #17
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RichRide: That's part of the getting in synch I was talking about.

When you get used to riding together, the stoker will know when the captain is about to ease off. I guess 'getting used to your style' if you will

I mention about that when I start to slow, I ease of the pedals instead of an abrupt start to avoid jamming her knees. When I begin, I start wil half a revolution in a slow starting motion to ease into the spin.

When we are hammering and I plan want to back off, I say,"OK!", she knows what it means. If I want to start hammering I say, 'let's go!' If your ride together enough, you pick up on those things. Sort of like remebering not to turn too soon before clearing an island at an intersection. I did that ONCE!......You learn fast on a tandem!

But once we ride the tandem for a month without the singles, No need to say anything, she knows! She'll know by the easing into the pedals that I am accelerting or by the slowing of the pedals that I am ready to coast

There are points on my single I like to cost down on rolling hills and pedal up. On the tandem, I jsut keep the pedals spinning in order to avoid stressing her knees. I soft pedal on the down and apply pressure on the ups. She can feel me and knows how to react.

When we were riding the tandem more frequently, others woud comment on how together we were. Couple of other riders made comments that it looked as if we were in a dance! Fells like it too, when you get in synch!
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Old 11-17-08, 08:59 AM   #18
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I have a question for you tandem types. How does the stoker react to unexpected gear changes from the captain? When I ride up a hill, I'll drop down 2 or 3 cogs and immediately I'm spinning away. But if I had a stoker, she would would suddenly thrown into a faster pace.

Also, how about coasting? What if I decide to coast but the stoker is still hammering away?

It seems that a tandem is a two headed beast and would be a very frustrating experience...
there are no unexpected gear changes, coasts, etc.
you want to coast, you say "coast"
you see a bump coming, you say "bump"
you want to shift, you say "shift"
if you can't deal with that, stay on a single. like I said, tandem riding is a test of a relationship.

old tandem joke

three tandem couples are riding together, and one of the stokers/wives says "shift". three bikes shift instantly.
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Old 11-17-08, 12:27 PM   #19
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........Plus she'll start wanting to vist the shops for goodies!
She already does. I try to avoid hitting the LBS when she is along. It seems every time she tags along, she finds something she needs. I bought her a nice, light, Ultegra-equipped road bike at the beginning of summer and now it's my turn. I'm wanting to get a mid-range road bike and convert my entry-level Schwinn into a commuter. Once I get past that, I'll start working on the tandem.
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Old 11-18-08, 12:19 AM   #20
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I bought her a nice, light, Ultegra-equipped road bike at the beginning of summer and now it's my turn.
Well then DAMMIT YES, it your turn!
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Old 11-18-08, 05:32 AM   #21
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Mr.Beanz congratulations on your relationship What you described in tandem biking seems like a good test IMHO.

Looks like the synchro has to be much better than wild water canoeing. The canoe is much more independent than a bike since there is no mechanical device tying you together.
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Old 11-18-08, 07:15 AM   #22
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I'm kind of looking for a tandem tadpole trike, since the wife canot balance on 2 wheels, and our tries with a tandem have been near disastrous.
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Old 11-18-08, 04:03 PM   #23
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Mr.Beanz congratulations on your relationship What you described in tandem biking seems like a good test IMHO.

Looks like the synchro has to be much better than wild water canoeing. The canoe is much more independent than a bike since there is no mechanical device tying you together.

I know there is no comparison but be warned, tandems aren't easy just because the pedals are tied by the timing chain. Sure it's not independent like the canoe, but if you're out of synch, it's tough.

Part of the reason why we don't ride the tandem as much when we're concentrating on singles and vice versa. Plenty of people kid saying,"she's not pedaling", but believe me, I would know!..Heck, if she wipes her nose, I feel the movement onthe tandem. First time we rode the tandem, I thought it was going to be EASY. I was wrong. We did a 50 miler and I almost fainted halfway!. It requires more balancing, counterbalancing and concentration. The arms were killing me!

I had a bud that was about Gina's size so we figured we'd fly on the tandem since he was a much stronger rider than Gina. WRONG! It's like we were fighting eachother the entire time. It was one of the wrost rides ever!

Never canoed so not starting a 'tougher than' debate, just letting others know, tandems take practice and can be tough if you are in synch!
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Old 11-18-08, 04:05 PM   #24
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I'm kind of looking for a tandem tadpole trike, since the wife canot balance on 2 wheels, and our tries with a tandem have been near disastrous.


SHHHHHHHHHHHH, ARE YOU CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hehehehe! Gina sees the tandem trikes and lowbents on the trail and keeps commenting on how she would like to try one!

We ran into a couple of forum buds the on the trail riding these. Gina was asking questions again! These suckers are fast and I know Gina waould drop me hard if she were onone!

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