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Tandem Cycling A bicycle built for two. Want to find out more about this wonderful world of tandems? Check out this forum to talk with other tandem enthusiasts. Captains and stokers welcome!

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Old 07-11-02, 01:45 PM   #1
JohnC
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Suspension Seatpost for Stoker Opinions?

Hello,

I am new to the forum, but not new to tandeming.

My wife (stoker) and I were discussing the merits of a suspension seatpost for her. I was looking at something like the Rock Shox seat post. They are about $60 right now.

Has anyone done this? Do they help or hurt? We are casual riders on the road only.

Thanks,

John
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Old 07-11-02, 04:29 PM   #2
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Some folks love 'em, some folks hate 'em.

Debbie had one on our first tandem and wasn't a big fan so we removed it and she's never used one since.

Pro's:

- They take the sting out of big bumps that captains neglect to warn their stoker's about.
- They can be set up with either fast or slow progression to suit different riding styles:
a) Aggressive teams usually set the posts up so they are very stiff to guard against "pogo" action; they'll still deaden the big bumps while providing a firm foundation for pedalling efficiency.
b) More "sensitive" stokers can have their posts set up so they soak up just about everything - kinda like an air-ride seat on a truck. For some stokers, if it wasn't for their softride beam or shock post they probably wouldn't ride a tandem.

Con's:

- If they're not set up properly they can mess up a stoker's riding style/pedalling efficiency.
- They add some weight to the bike; hey, some folks count grams.
- You have to have enough exposed seatpost distance available to ensure the post will work with your stoker's minimum seat height position. If there is only an 1" of seat post showing on a tandem a shock post probably won't fit on the bike.
- Some of the early models (Tamer) were not as durable as they needed to be and proved to be problematic until stronger hardware was installed.
- Unless you use a parallogram model (Cane Creek Thudbuster - http://www.mtbtandems.com/images/thudbustersm.jpg), there will be some maintenance required to ensure the post doesn't develop a problem with stiction.
- Single bike Roadie's will never understand why you need something like a shock post.

So, there you have it. RockShox makes good products so, for $60, it might be worth giving it a try. You can certainly spend a lot more on one. As casual riders it may be just the ticket!!!

Last edited by TandemGeek; 01-30-05 at 09:26 PM.
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Old 07-12-02, 07:34 AM   #3
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Mark,

Thanks for the reply.

I think your comment that the post may be just the thing for a casual rider is a good one. We do not ride enough to get completely through the saddle sore issues too often. For me that requires more frequent rides than we are currently doing on the tandem (the only bike my wife will ride).

Turns out that our Burley has a seatpost diameter of 26.6 mm (1.047" on my calipers). The Rock Shox is 26.8. Nashbar has a Tamer that can be fitted with a 26.6 shim. Are the more recent ones better quality?

If I was to go over $100, the thud buster you mentioned may be an option.

I am also going to upgrade the seat for her. Terry products seem to get good reviews.

Appreciate the help,

John
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Old 07-12-02, 01:09 PM   #4
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I do believe the bugs got worked out of the seat posts so any of the current models will do nicely. Another seat to consider would be Selle Italia's TransAm Lady. Debbie's been riding it for about a year now and it's performed very well. The cover and foundation material "seem" to be more durable than some of the older Terry seats. Haven't seen any of the new Terry seat with a lot of miles but they do have a great reputation.

Mark
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Old 07-12-02, 01:35 PM   #5
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Another quick question:

There seems to be a lot of 26.8 mm posts out there and very few 26.6 mm posts. The diameter difference is slightly less than 8 mils. This is roughly equivalent of taking a sheet of copy paper and adding to the circumference of a seat post. Not a huge difference.

Any idea whether a 26.8 will fit were a 26.6 came from? I am doubtful....

John
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Old 07-14-02, 06:27 PM   #6
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Fitting Different Sized Seat Posts

A good frame builder / frame repair shop can ream your seat tube(s) out to 26.8 so that the more common seat sized posts will fit. However, since you're experiementing, the safest and easiest solution is to go with a 25.4mm shock post and a shim for your 26.6 seat tube.

Last edited by livngood; 07-14-02 at 07:46 PM.
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Old 08-29-02, 05:04 PM   #7
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We have the Rock Shox (road) post on out Calfee Tetra Tetra. We rode a tandem previously that had a SoftRide beam previously and it was too much bobbing for my stoker.
She's very happy with the shockpost on the Calfee.
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