Hi! My wife and I bought a tandem last summer. We love it. We ride around Southern California, mostly with the Orange County Wheelmen and sometimes with the MASCOTS (Moving Around Southern California On TandemS). We had single bikes before - nothing fancy and, of course, could never keep up with each other. So, we found the solution: a bike for two people (pretty smart, huh!). Now I can't get rid of her :-) Our tandem has a special feature, however: Independent Pedalling. She can stop pedalling at any time and I can keep on cranking and vice versa. It works great for us. It makes us - well - more "Independent".
Welcome to the Forums and congrats on the tandem solution. Sounds fairly equitable to me. Hope to hear more about riding in Orange County and your thoughts on bicycling in general. We have a world wide diversified group and all ideas and opinions are welcome.
I will say this about tandeming: at first it was a "struggle" (I don't mean going uphill here) I mean who does what, when, where and how? Who calls out what, when, where and how? We "argued" (I believe it's also called: getting into fights) over how it should be done, etc. I thought I was explaining something very clearly but, somehow, there were failures to communicate. Sounds familiar?
However, with practice (we bought books on the subject and even took a bike riding clinic offered by the League of American Bicyclists) and teamwork and all the other good things that make life liveable, once you are on the same page, it's the heck of a lot of fun, and I mean it's a blast! For instance, the scenery does not look the same from a tandem as it does from an air-conditioned SUV. The orange groves in bloom do not smell the same from a tandem as they do from an air-conditioned SUV. And so on...
The way we approach it could be summarized by the following: Fun-Fitness-Friends, with SAFETY always #1 (notice: although we try to go as fast as we can most of the time, "speed" is not one of our goals).
Kona Dr Dew, Lemond Le Alp, Mongoss NX-7, Trek T200 Tandem
Welcome Pierre. My wife and I enjoy riding our tandem as well. We learned the hard way our first year - trial and error (with an emphasis on error), but after that started to get synced up and now operate as a team. A smooth working team on a tandem is really a delight!