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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 06-26-07, 05:13 AM   #1
volpi
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Cannondale road tandem

I greet you from Italy , and excuse me for my English.
Last week i sold my old cannondale tandem ( 1991) and i have ordered a new cannondale road tandem.
In the old tandem there were canti brake on rim front and rear.On Alps i have had some problems in descent with front tire( 700x32) and in two occasions there was a disaster : too heat the front rim , front wheel bursted,hospital for me and my wife!
The new road tandem cannondale has Avid BB 7 disc brake.I know and use these brakes on my TRICE and i am very satisfied , no problems in mountains .
But i never used this sistem on a tandem ( in my region not so much flat ! ) and i want to ask you your experience or your advice .
I thank you in advance
ciao
Francesco
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Old 06-26-07, 11:02 AM   #2
dfcas
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Hi Francesco

I had these brakes on 2 Cannondale road tandems and they are very strong brakes.We don't have long mountains here,but very steep ones and we had no problems at 160kilos/360 pounds.
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Old 06-26-07, 11:08 AM   #3
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From what I've read, the BB-7's have been tested to the point that the red adjustment knobs have started melting. IIRC the test was extremely severe. The good news is that the brakes still worked. I have them on my tandem and like them a lot but I live in Illinois and although "flat lander" may be an over-simplification I haven't been on the bike on any hills over 400 feet.
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Old 06-26-07, 11:41 AM   #4
Eddie50
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We have a 2004 cdale road tandem with the disc and really appreciate them, strong braking, still works in the rain, and works in the hills, tested them in AZ descending mt Lemon, a good 10+ miles of descent.

for a tandem, the last thing I would like happening would be a front tire blowout due to overheating of the rim.

Thats from our experience with the avids.
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Old 06-26-07, 02:12 PM   #5
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I have a 2006 or 2007 model and the brakes are great. They rattle a little on rough roads (which is annoying), but they stop like I threw an anchor overboard. If you get a larger captain Cannondale tandem (mine is an X/S), you can improve the rear brake cable routing to eliminate a portion of the outer cable on the top tube and eliminate a really annoying rattle there too.


Also, a basic JDandD rack fits nicely on it even with the disc if you bend the rack ends a tiny bit.


Sheldon
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Old 06-26-07, 03:22 PM   #6
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Descending Mt.Lemmon in AZ is similar to some of the Italian Alps. Elevation of this mountain is 8,200+ ft. (+/-3,000 Meters) with about a 6 to 7% downgrade slope and enough curves. A good test for any brake system. Believe you'll be happier with Avid discs than the cantis on mountain descents in the Alps.
Your English is just great . . .
Ciao!
Rudy and Kay/zonatandem
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Old 06-27-07, 05:20 AM   #7
robmin
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I have a 2004 cannondale road tandem with the avid disc brakes. They do heat up going down hill. Last week we actually melted the avid sticker on the rear brake, ok, the hill was 3 k long, 9% grade and we were pulling a burley trailer. The brakes started to fade a bit at the end, but we managed to stop on time….Prior to this, no problems at all.
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Old 06-27-07, 12:05 PM   #8
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Stoker and I ride lots of mountain passes here in Utah. We have an '05 C'dale with the BB-7s and they work great. Team weight is about 135 kg. I think you'll be very happy with them once you learn how to adjust them, etc. They are a bit picky that way...
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Old 08-21-07, 07:00 AM   #9
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My wife and I have a 2005 Cannondale road tandem with the 8" Avid BB7 mechanical disk brakes. I've been using the Avid mechanical disks for years on single mountain bikes and I ran them on my downhill specific MTB as well. The brakes have tons of power and work very well in the tandem application. The one issue with the mechanical brakes and the tandem application is that between to shorter cable pull of the road brake levers, cable stretch for the rear brake, and the apparent fact that the increased travel of the road version of the BB7 caliper is quite adequate, the rear brake is always mushy and you use the full lever travel to engage them.

We too had a similar experience descending on our old tandem with rim brakes. Coming down off the back side of Hurricane Mountain Rd in N. Conway, NH (USA). The grade average is 17% and we had a heat induced rear blowout at about 30mph. I managed to keep it upright and got it into a ditch where we could slow gradually but it was the reason we got the new bike with disk brakes. I swear by them and contest that if you are doing any descending to speak of (on a tandem) that you should own them. I'm even running them on our time trial specific tandem (also a Cannondale).

-Couch
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Old 08-21-07, 09:00 AM   #10
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The Avid BB7 are extremely well regarded on the MountainBike Freeride downhill community as a Viable alternative to hydrolic powered brakes, Actually as far as I know they are the best cable operated brakes in the market (necessary for STI/Ergo control type setups).

If you ever suffer from any over-heating issues, you can always increase the size of the rotors for more expose area (maybe not recommended by manufacture do to liability issues, even if is totally fine) just by getting a different brake mount adapter but keeping the same brake caliper.

ps: I grow up in the mountains of Colombia (very step and also long) and I suffer a few tube blowups over the years (never crash I don't know how) (Using scott self energize brakes and Scott\Mathouser agresive brake pads) that made me really paranoid about rims getting overheat (Use to carry tons of water, today I just have much better brakes).

PsII: The SRAM Corporation is great in terms of warranty replacements (I don't know in Italy) if any part ever fail, melt or suffer any damage.
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Old 08-25-07, 01:54 AM   #11
asdgrube
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First Tandem

Hello,

I'm considering buying a cdale road tandem. This would be our first tandem . You guys who own one would you recomend it?


Thank You
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Old 08-25-07, 04:25 PM   #12
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I have one as my first Tandem. It's pretty nice, although I ride custom lugged steel, and it leaves a bit to be desired in fit and finish compared to my other bikes. I didn't want to drop the $5K for the co-motion I was eyeballing for a bike I wasn't sure we would like riding.

The welding job is quite nice, the paint is pretty good. The geometry is also quite good for my wife and I. I like the disc brakes.

There's a few things that are minor annoyances:

1) The brake cables are held to the forks and rear seatstays with zip-ties. That's really marginal, and bush-league.

2) The braze-ons (weld ons) are not particularly well thought out in places. For example the rear brake cable is partially sleeved and partially open. The braze-ons are such that the cable housing rattles on the top tube. Shortening the cable housing, and making the entire run open solves that problem. The shifter braze ons are under the downtube so you can't see the cables (to put a grommet on for gear indication). I would like it if they used shifter bosses with adjusters there so I could switch to downtube shifters as well if the mood strikes me. Now it's brifters or bar ends.

3) The rack eyelets on the drop outs are not tapped

4) The rims are schaeder with presta eyelets.

5) A warning sticker under the clearcoat. This totally sucks and almost made me walk on the tandem

6) the seats suck unbelievably bad, I'd rather ride the bare seatpost. 2 brooks units and we are happy.

All in all it's a pretty nice unit for $2600. I would buy it again.

Sheldon
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Old 09-20-07, 07:32 PM   #13
I'mnotdeadyet
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What have you upgraded on the C'dale?

I was just wondering, besides the saddles, you guys with the C'dales, what have you changed out or added? Am seriously considering one, and having ugi with my road and mtn bikes, I was wondering what I might 'have to' do in the future
Thanks
INDY, aka SB.
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Old 09-21-07, 07:18 AM   #14
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Francesco, from my bit of research, Avids are good brakes however as stated in another post, the red plastic knobs can melt due to heat. I am going to mount Interloc/Winzip dual action mechinical disc brakes on our tandem with 203mm rotors front and rear. Do a "google" search for Interloc Racing Designs, and you should be able to find a bunch of info on these brakes.
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Old 09-22-07, 08:50 AM   #15
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Has anyone actually

ever reported that this melting has happened to them on a ride? I've read the website too where its spoken about, and that Avid won't recommend it, etc. So I called both Cannondale and Avid. Neither of them knew anything about it (over the phone) and the C'dale people said that they've been putting the 203mm BB7's on for the last 3 years 'with no issues'. You would've thought with the state of litigation these days that this subject would be right up front for both companies.
I'm interested in this subject personally, since I'm aggressively looking for my first tandem and we'll be a 400lb team and brakes have been a favorite concern of mine, even on my single road bike. (Nothing like not being able to stop before the intersection after a hill). I'm looking at C'dale for this very reason.
Thanks
INDY aka SB.
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Old 10-04-07, 06:35 AM   #16
pel
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Positively the right buy.
Have the 2006 Cannondale Mountain Tandem with discs.
Stop like a motor bike.

Last year did two big passes in Switzerland over 2000m and 30 km fast descents.
Brakes were great. Braking every 10 to 15 seconds swapping front and back. Do not touch the rotor.

I would not go for any other brake system on long fast descents. The cable as opposed to hydraulic was excellent easy to maintain (make sure the cable nut is tight - a bike shop left the front only finger tight).

200 kg all up on a fully loaded tandem.

peace of mind for sure.
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Old 10-04-07, 01:03 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pel View Post
Positively the right buy.
Have the 2006 Cannondale Mountain Tandem with discs.
Stop like a motor bike.

Last year did two big passes in Switzerland over 2000m and 30 km fast descents.
Brakes were great. Braking every 10 to 15 seconds swapping front and back. Do not touch the rotor.

I would not go for any other brake system on long fast descents. The cable as opposed to hydraulic was excellent easy to maintain (make sure the cable nut is tight - a bike shop left the front only finger tight).

200 kg all up on a fully loaded tandem.

peace of mind for sure.
Goedendag Pel :-)

I thought you had the Cannondale MT in "stock" form? AFAIK this came from the factory with Magura Julies on it. Or did you have the guys at De Boer build up a frame with Avids?
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Old 10-05-07, 06:11 AM   #18
pel
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Dag M

Came in the box with BB7 Avids.

Cannot get the discs on the current so called Street tandem ie our 2006 Mountain Tandem has been down graded in running gear and brakes to cut costs - what a pity.

Interesting that you mention de Boer - they charged us like a wounded bull for our many visits
Keep well.
Sterkte
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