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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 03-05-07, 07:51 PM   #1
Cmwebb
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Question about tandem cassetes

HI,

I'm new to this forum and tandem riding so please bear (bare) with me if I ask some silly questions. I recieved a tandem last year as a wedding gift from my grandma. Yeah grandma! We have been really enjoying it but as where we live is very mountainous we sometimes feel like a lower gear or two would be nice. Right now we have a 11/32 cassete on the back and on the weekend I went to the local bike shop and ordered one with a 34 teeth. Oh, sorry for wandering around here but I suppose I should add that I live in Japan and tandem riding is quite unusual so although Makoto knows a lot about bikes not so much about tandems. Anyway, he asked which cassette I wanted and as the rear derailer is a Shimano LX I said LX. But now that I am looking at the specification of our bike I have noticed that it has an Atomic Tandem Pro rear hub. Does that mean that only a tandem specific cassette will fit on it. And is there a difference in strength between a tandem cassette and a mountain bike cassette.

thanks,

Chris
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Old 03-05-07, 08:30 PM   #2
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Tandems use the same cassettes as every other road or mountain bike, they just needs to be compatible with the spline pattern on the hub's cassette carrier. I'm guessing that a bit more than 98% of production bikes use a Shimano compatible cassette hub so chances are your hub most likely uses a Shimano spline pattern.... just not that familiar with Atomic hubs. Assuming it's a Shimano-compatible hub, you really just need to make sure you've got the right number of cogs, e.g., 7, 8, 9, or 10, to work with your shifters and rear derailleur.

All that said, in the larger cassettes like the 32t or 34t models Shimano's LX cassettes have proven to be about the most durable for many of us who ride off-road tandems. The more expensive XT/XTR models can fold or come apart under heavy tandem drive train loads. SRAMs MTB cassettes are also pretty durable.

In the smaller, 12x23-27t cassettes almost any of the better quality cassettes will work and hold up the rigors of tandem loads.

Last edited by TandemGeek; 03-06-07 at 11:32 AM.
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Old 03-05-07, 09:21 PM   #3
Michel Gagnon
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As tamdemGeek said, cassettes are cassettes. However, changing from 32 to 34 will help just a little bit. Maybe you should look for changes in your crankset.

What chainrings do you have?
If you have a road tandem, chances are you have 52-40-30 chainrings on a 130/74 mm or 110/74 mm bolt circle. A very worthwile change would be to replace the 30 by a 26.
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Old 03-06-07, 09:54 AM   #4
Cmwebb
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Hey you guessed right. That's exactly what I have on my bike. I'll look into getting a 26 teeth cog for up front.

Thanks both for your advice.

Chris
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Old 03-06-07, 11:19 AM   #5
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I know I am offroad but we use an 11/32 rear cassette in the LX form. I wanted to change the gearing so got a 12/34 in XT. It folded on us at the first hill. Back to the shop and they said it should not have folded and gave us another one. That folded on the first hill aswell. LX cassettes may carry a bit of extra weight but they are strong.
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Old 03-06-07, 11:33 AM   #6
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This looks good. I don't know how reliable t is but I think I saw someone it first on a home page of someone here.

http://abundantadventures.com/quads.html
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