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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 07-12-08, 10:56 AM   #26
WheresWaldo
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Originally Posted by hortan View Post
We have (and sometimes use) a 22 innerring.
I think it's a default (cheep) Shimano Mountainbike ring (steel)
We don't have shifting problems.
Why does everybody seem to have, or want to have, a 10 speed cassette in the rear?
A triple with a 8 or 9 speed in the rear is more than enough (when sensible selection of the chainringssizes and sprocket !). To me a 10 speed is 'over the top' : less robust with no adventages. However I have to admit: never owned, or even used, a 10 speed.
The advantage is smaller gaps between cogs and less double shifting over 8 speed, Over 9 Speed not so much. But it does get you in newer components as most road groups have all gone 10 speed (wait for 2009 Campy 11 Speed, then ask this again).
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Old 07-16-08, 02:55 PM   #27
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Maybe everbody who hates the double shifting should consider the Rohloff 14-speed internal gear hub:
14 uniformly spaced speeds operated with ONE shifting lever and at the same time a relatively broad rear cog and broad chain which is always in the ideal (straight) line.

Personally I prefer a triple configuration in front and a rear derailleur with 8 or 9 speed: it offers a wide total range AND a close ratio spacing.
(But only IF you make your OWN selection of chainwheels and cogs dedicated to YOUR situation in stead of what the manufacturers offer by default).
Especially when you remove the (smallest) cogs you seldom use in combination with the largest front chainwheel (say <1% of the time).

When I see a lot of people having a front 52-53 or even 54 in combination with a rear 12- or even 11 cog,
I think you seldom use your largest gears and if you do it's probably downwards while getting at unsafe speeds for just a few seconds.
Further more I expect most of you use the intermediate frontchainwheel for more than 90% of the time, since the gap between intermediate- and largest front is (too) large.
A pity!
Also I wouldn't be surpriced if the 12-27 users miss the lacking 18 (9&10spd) and 16 (9-spd).
One rear speed extra would be a small relief but it's better to install a 18 anyway on a 8-9-10 system and remove one (or more) of the largest cogs
(not THE largest) and reshuffle the remaining largest cogs and if needed replace with another size because at the lower side of the spectrum you need LARGER gaps between the gears than the manufacturers offer by default.
For instance the gaps between 27-25-23 are too small:
If this also apply to you is easily to be checked by remembering how often you shift TWO rear gears at ONE time or at very short interval times in the lower gears.

And by the way :

The double shifting (front&back) has more adventages.
If, for instance, you're on a flat road but the it's starting to climb, you have two options:
1)shift rear one cog larger (small effect) or
2)shift to the intermediate (effect, depending on the chainwheels ofcourse, usually at least three times larger and that is what you in that case you useally want)
So you don't always have to sequentially go through all gears.

WheresWaldo, I fear you're right about the possible future 11 spd cassette since at this moment the Campagnolo 10 speeds cogs are as broad as the 9 spd Shimano cogs.
(Shimano 10 spd cogs are almost 10% narrower! So I would prefer a Campagnolo 10 spd over a Shimano 10 spd system)
Making the cogs of the 11 spd Campagnolo cassettes as narrow as the Shimano 10 spd already is, would allow 11 cogs on the same body.
That is: I presume (and hope) for the future Campagnolo customers because making the chain again narrower than it already is, would be the worst thing to do:
You most probably know that most chain problems (and short lifespan) always occur on the super narrow 10 spd chains!
Last but not least: making the body broader would mean weaker wheels and more slanting chain.
So I hope that the current 8-9 speed will remain on the market (for decades).
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Old 07-16-08, 03:11 PM   #28
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I don't think that Shimano will be going 10 speed on their mountain bike side anytime in the near future. It just doesn't make sense to go there in the dirt. If my assumption is true that will leave tandems with 9 speed stuff for quite some time. Now getting high end 9 speed road cassettes might be a crunch at some point. Although Shimano may make the 9 speed today's "8 speed" (ie lower end). Oh it hurts the brain to guess what the bike industry will do on gearing.
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Old 07-16-08, 03:18 PM   #29
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Snipped because it was too technical for me ...

WheresWaldo, I fear you're right about the possible future 11 spd cassette since at this moment the Campagnolo 10 speeds cogs are as broad as the 9 spd Shimano cogs.
(Shimano 10 spd cogs are almost 10% narrower! So I would prefer a Campagnolo 10 spd over a Shimano 10 spd system)
Making the cogs of the 11 spd Campagnolo cassettes as narrow as the Shimano 10 spd already is, would allow 11 cogs on the same body.
That is: I presume (and hope) for the future Campagnolo customers because making the chain again narrower than it already is, would be the worst thing to do:
You most probably know that most chain problems (and short lifespan) always occur on the super narrow 10 spd chains!
Last but not least: making the body broader would mean weaker wheels and more slanting chain.
So I hope that the current 8-9 speed will remain on the market (for decades).
From all that I have read the 11 speed Campy fits in the same space as the current 10 speed. So no difference in O.L.D. for road hubs. You would have to assume that the spacing would be tighter and the chain narrower, but at the same time have no affect on current chainlines. Chains these days are not that bad. I regularly get between 1500 - 2500 miles on a chain, of course not all at once, I rotate between two chains during the 3000 - 5000 miles, our tandem chain life is only about 10-15% shorter. You would think that 8 and 9 speed might be around a while, but I fear they are nearly already extinct, especially with SRAM and Shimano announcing 10 speed cassette with wider ranges than they currently have now.

I think over the next year or so, all the 8/9 speed users better start buying up closeouts and NOS so that they do not get dragged kicking and screaming into 10 speed, or heaven forbid 11 speed drivetrains.

If you do choose to move to the upcoming Campy offering at least you can use the famous line; "These go to 11!"
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Old 07-16-08, 09:08 PM   #30
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Talking TA . . . .
Back in the 70's we ran TA cranks on our Assenmacher tandem. Chainrings 56/44/26. Freewheel 6-speed 14/27 (yeah that's in the 'old days!').
Only issue was there was no front derailleur that had a long enough cage; so welded on a steel cage extension. Worked great and it was f-a-s-t on the downhills! No shifting issues with barcons and no chain watcher/guide gizmo.
Recall an 11 mile downhill bouncing on the saddles at 44 mph racing 3 other male/male younger tandem duos. We were the only male/female team and no-way was stoker Kay gonna let those young guys beat us then 'older' folks!
Just our experience . . .
Pedal on TWOgether!
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Old 07-17-08, 05:05 AM   #31
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We run 54/39/28, with Ultergra, 11-34 IRD cassette on 26" wheels, but we will replace the IRD for an SRAM 11-28 as per earlier post. Might go to a 26 chain ring eventually to keep a low gear within the range of the 28x34. No troubles with shifting to 28 chain ring, but going up to the 54 is not the cleanest, need to work on that, might eventually go to a 52, we can't push 54x11 on flat even with a tail wind. I specked a 54 because I thought we would reach 54x11it with 26" wheels, but we don't.
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Old 07-17-08, 05:36 AM   #32
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I don't think that Shimano will be going 10 speed on their mountain bike side anytime in the near future. It just doesn't make sense to go there in the dirt. If my assumption is true that will leave tandems with 9 speed stuff for quite some time. Now getting high end 9 speed road cassettes might be a crunch at some point. Although Shimano may make the 9 speed today's "8 speed" (ie lower end). Oh it hurts the brain to guess what the bike industry will do on gearing.
Baldy88: Like you put it I think you're right Shimano might stick to max. 9 speed on MTB (and they're right!) so I just have to keep my MTB configuration (front: 4-104/64mm rear 9speed Shimano) on our tandem.
It makes me wander why so many of you go along in the 'more speed' race by installing a race configuration: Front chainwheels of 4-104mm are sold in 48 teeth (and maybe even larger)!
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Old 07-17-08, 08:23 AM   #33
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53-39-26 in front (W/ N-Gear Chain Guide),12-27 9sp in the back.

We're in Central FL and only need the "granny" when we go to Lake County or out of state.
Reg,

Your ¨old¨ T2000 is now in the UK with 48-38-24 and 11-32 for the very steep hills along the south coast.
The front are Salsa rings and changing is bit ratty, but we haven't fallen off yet. Some tweeking is required, methinks. Off to France on the tandem next month.
I was a bit nervous about getting the tandem across the pond with British Airways, but I packed it in 1and1/2 bike boxes, checked in in Tampa and off it went to the oversized check-in at no charge. It was out before our regular baggage in London. We stood it on end on a cart, pushed it thru the airport and loaded it into a rented MPV for the 1 hr trip to Brighton. What a relief! We've done a few 30-40 mi rides, one a weekender with loaded panniers, and are very much enjoying it. We are currently in Switzerland with no bikes.
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Old 07-17-08, 08:28 AM   #34
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Chains these days are not that bad. I regularly get between 1500 - 2500 miles on a chain, of course not all at once, I rotate between two chains during the 3000 - 5000 miles, our tandem chain life is only about 10-15% shorter.
My first chain on my 18-speed (3x6) Nishiki Continental lasted something like 20-30 thousand miles. Now that I have a seven speed freewheel, my chain life has noticeably dropped. 1500-2500 miles isn't even a month of touring.

I guess I understand now why we have 8s, 9s and 10s. The manufacturers can tell us the shifting is smoother. They sell more replacement parts and are more profitable. And many of the consumers don't remember the days of chains that lasted and lasted.
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Old 07-17-08, 11:53 AM   #35
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My first chain on my 18-speed (3x6) Nishiki Continental lasted something like 20-30 thousand miles. Now that I have a seven speed freewheel, my chain life has noticeably dropped. 1500-2500 miles isn't even a month of touring.

I guess I understand now why we have 8s, 9s and 10s. The manufacturers can tell us the shifting is smoother. They sell more replacement parts and are more profitable. And many of the consumers don't remember the days of chains that lasted and lasted.
This is not really a truism. More than likely your 3x6 setup was well worn long before even the 10000 mile mark, you just allowed everything to wear beyond its useful life together. Even so, if you did that with todays equipment you would not only replace the chain but chain rings and rear cluster at the same time. Am I to assume that you are NOT replacing your chain every month or at least rotating between several of them each month.
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Old 07-17-08, 11:56 AM   #36
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Baldy88: Like you put it I think you're right Shimano might stick to max. 9 speed on MTB (and they're right!) so I just have to keep my MTB configuration (front: 4-104/64mm rear 9speed Shimano) on our tandem.
It makes me wander why so many of you go along in the 'more speed' race by installing a race configuration: Front chainwheels of 4-104mm are sold in 48 teeth (and maybe even larger)!
Don't be so sure, remember that Shimano is a follower, Campy has gone 11 speed road, SRAM is hinting at 10 speed MTB with the new for 2009 Powerdome wide spaced clusters. It won't be long before Shimano will make the same moves. They do not want their customers moving to someone else because of some perceived benefit that 1 more gear will bring them.
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Old 07-17-08, 01:28 PM   #37
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This is not really a truism. More than likely your 3x6 setup was well worn long before even the 10000 mile mark, you just allowed everything to wear beyond its useful life together. Even so, if you did that with todays equipment you would not only replace the chain but chain rings and rear cluster at the same time. Am I to assume that you are NOT replacing your chain every month or at least rotating between several of them each month.
It may well have been. Don't interpret my "1500-2500 isn't even a month of touring" to mean that is my primary riding. The vast majority of my rides are a short commute, which means I'm putting on 1500-ish miles per year. So no, I don't replace my chain monthly. Nor do I rotate between several of them each month.
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Old 07-20-08, 09:05 AM   #38
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The most successful "chain checker" for me has been one I made myself for a customer. Using a braze-on to clamp-on mount, I attached a short piece of rack mount straps. Some chain checkers will not work with some tandems. If you would like more information on how I made this work, let me know.
FWIW: we run N-Gear JumpStops on both tandems (and our mountanbike singles) - and love them!

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Old 07-20-08, 02:45 PM   #39
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Proper care/lubrication can make chains and all other drivetrain ocomponentry last longer.
We keep our drivetrain clean and lubricate chains with the hot wax method.
Drivetrains will not nearly last as long as cross-over chains, as these do not continually get de-railed.
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Old 07-20-08, 02:50 PM   #40
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Correction to above post: Should read "Drive*chains* will not last as long as cross-over chains . . ."
Got to remember to proofread post before hitting Reply button!
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Old 07-26-08, 03:55 PM   #41
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Put on a 26 tooth Salsa this week. In spite of the fact that it says its 7,8,9 speed compatible, we haven't had any problem running it with a 10 speed setup.

So far it shifts fine, but we've only had the opportunity to try it out on some very short hills.
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Old 09-22-08, 09:34 AM   #42
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Da Vinci

We are still shopping.
Are the Da Vincis a good alternative to fitting smaller chainrings into a conventional triple?
The grades on the mountain road that runs by out house run 14% to 19%. Thankfully, there are other rides around with lesser grades.

Would you recommend the Da Vinci?

Is there a tandem compatibility test?
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Old 09-24-08, 07:48 PM   #43
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We are still shopping.
Are the Da Vincis a good alternative to fitting smaller chainrings into a conventional triple?
Yes, the Davinci designs gives very wide range gearing, but you probably already knew that. It occurred to me this weekend that you could shift the gear-inches range up or down even further on the Davinci by changing the size of the chainrings on the timing chains.

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Would you recommend the Da Vinci?
If you search this forum you will find several threads with various opinions on that... At the risk of diverting this thread from its original topic, I'll offer my two cents: yes, I would recommend it. To me the ICS is a luxury, well worth the small penalty in extra weight (<0.5%) and complexity. We could certainly ride without it, and you wouldn't choose to add it to a racing bike. But for the actual riding we do every day, it's a convenience I wouldn't want to give up.

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Is there a tandem compatibility test?
Umm, test ride? Be sure to read up on "the Proper Method" first: http://www.gtgtandems.com/tech/propmethod.html

Here's an article about compatibility... http://www.thetandemlink.com/article...dontclick.html

Our first ride was on a tandem being sold on Craig's list. We were a little wobbly the first mile, but besides that, it clicked from the first ride. Later, we were vacationing in the Denver area and got to borrow a test ride from the Davinci shop for a weekend. The advantages over riding separate bikes were apparent from the first rides -- much easier to talk, no one is ever left behind, and it's fast & fun. But I can imagine that certain personalities wouldn't mix well sharing one bike.
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Old 09-29-08, 05:27 PM   #44
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FWIW: we run N-Gear JumpStops on both tandems (and our mountanbike singles) - and love them!

This is the one ordered after I had made one out of a deraileur hanger. After a few weeks of use the customer returned to have mine put back on. I'm sure it worked adequately, however the metal I used was stiffer and more reliable at keeping the chain going where it is supposed to go on the tandem I had installed it on.
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Old 09-30-08, 06:42 AM   #45
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My '84 Counterpoint Opus came with 24-44-48 matched with a 14-32 6-speed freewheel. I rarely use the granny gear, but when I need it, it's good to have.

I don't actually like the gearing much, but it's hard to upgrade it. The bike is a classic and is all original, and the hubs are Phil Wood... so almost anything would be a downgrade.
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Old 10-03-08, 01:36 PM   #46
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Is it really a '44' ?
In that case: Really close to the largest chainwheel (48) comparing to the great 'gap' (20!)between the granny and the intermediate !
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Old 10-03-08, 02:41 PM   #47
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Is it really a '44' ?
In that case: Really close to the largest chainwheel (48) comparing to the great 'gap' (20!)between the granny and the intermediate !
That would be known as a "half-step" triple. The 48 is 9% bigger than the 44. The gears in the 14-32 average 18% steps, so, changing on the front is about half a step on the back. It's not exact since the steps are based on integer counts of gear teeth, but reasonably close.
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Old 10-04-08, 05:11 AM   #48
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It's a pretty fair bet that a 7-speed freewheel and matching narrower chain will fit on that Counterpoint Opus. Change the middle ring to a 36, and you are done. You might have to change the front derailleur too, if it doesn't shift well across the new chainring gaps.

Half-step-plus-granny-gear was a strategy used to get wide, evenly spaced gearing with a limited number of cogs on the freewheel. My recollection is that it went away with the introduction of the seven-speed freewheel around 1983. I never liked the idea, owing to the large number of FD shifts, which I always found less reliable than consecutive cog shifts, with only a few chainring shifts.
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Old 10-04-08, 10:06 PM   #49
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FWIW I've got a 20t inner on my mtn. bike and use a "3rd eye" chain catcher. I can't remember the last time I dropped my chain and I've been using it for over 15 years.
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Old 10-12-08, 05:33 PM   #50
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granny

I run a 13-32 7spd and a 54-48-26 on my Sugino. I've installed a 24 on my Campy single triple. Smaller rings are available by other company than Shimano that will work fine. You may find some limitations in that only the larger cogs will allow adequate chain rap. The 26 cassette cog will be the limiting factor.
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