Well, my wife and I had been riding a Motiv Duet (Costco tandem from the mid 1990s) for a couple years now. It served us really well, it introduced us to tandem riding very cheaply, but we had just gotten to where it was not meeting our needs anymore. We always wanted to just ride our separate bikes because they felt so much nicer. This until yesterday...
Last night we picked up a locally built Rodriguez tandem from the early 1990s, with Magura hydraulic brakes and 48 spoke wheels on Phil Wood hubs, for $800. We commuted to work on it this morning (yeah, we're THOSE people) and what an AMAZING difference! I mean its just like riding my separate bike comfort-wise, and with two of us the performance is even better. It is just better, in every way. Can't wait to get out and do more riding, and I think we've got a really fun summer ahead.
Rodriguez Toucan tandem, Rodriguez Rainer Lite sport/touring
Good to see another Rodriguez on the rooad. If you are interested in group tandem rides, check out the Evergreen Tandem Club at www.evergreentandemclub.org. Also, be aware of the Northwest Tandem Rally in McMinneville on the Fourth of July weekend (www.nwtr.org/2008).