I’m a tandem newbie. Been roadin’ for 35 years, but just got into tandeming with my (soon-to-be-excellent-stoker) wife. Bought a Burley Rivazza and have just finished tuning it during the first 250 miles. Nice ride; it could use (but can’t have) about 2mm of chainline adjustment on the drive side of the FSA Mega Exo BB, but a fun ride – it rips right on down the road.
My prob’s have been with the brakes – a cranky SD 7 vee on the front and an Avid BB7 disc on the rear. I take the wheels off to put the frame in a special fork-mount system inside my Explorer. I do this so I can put my sea kayaks and gear box on a roof rack and so my bikes are out of sight / out of mind. It has kept my insurance company much happier because I no longer lose bikes to pros in parking lots; or try to drive into my garage with them up top; or back into stuff with them on a hitch rack. And it lets me drive my SUV relatively guilt free.
However, when I put the tandem wheels back on, invariably I have to adjust these brakes – especially the pads on the disc to get them where they need to be. They did not come with (wheel-out) pad spacers (inserts) and I don’t believe the inserts are available separately. Sooooooo, after doing this about three times, I removed both brakes and installed a XT vee’s that I had in my bone yard. I now have the repeatable braking setup that I wanted and needed.
So I guess the moral of my story is if you have disc brakes, leave the wheels / brake system intact for the most part. And needing consistent, 1mm or less tolerances on a six-foot bicycle frame makes about as much sense as biking in the nude.