Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Dallas area, Texas
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The $75 Tandem
I've seen quite a few posts about this or that cheapo tandem. Well, I just picked up the $75 Tandem courtesy of Craig's List. This is an old Huffy, probably should have been even cheaper due to condition, but that's a different issue. I have in mind a reverse bakfiets but that will be a while down the road, and this will be in the garage until then.
Some quick observations for future reference- things to watch for on these and similar bikes:
-Frame stiffness- front stays upright, but back feels like it can wobble from side to side. Moral is, take your stoker with you when you look at the bike, and actually try riding it.
-Frame size- The old balloon-tired bikes tended to be (and still largely are) a one-size-fits-all bike, meaning the frame is small and they hope to accommodate larger people with generous seat extension. Well, cheap tandems of the same era work the same way, so if you're not medium height or smaller, don't expect a good fit.
-Frame length- I would have thought that a tandem was just a stretched out cruiser frame. But on this one, the captain's toes can easily hit the front tire when turning- more crammed together than what you might expect.
Now, one thing I anticipated doing was removing the stoker's pedals (and seat) entirely and just running one long chain from the captain's cog to the back wheel. This will incidentally reduce gearing, which is part of the plan. Is there any reason this wouldn't work? Anyone tried this?