Originally Posted by micheleforjoy
I am considering getting a Raleigh Companion tandem for my daughter as a wedding gift. She and her future husband enjoy leisurely week-end rides but this would be their 1st tandem. Can anyone give me opinions on this particular tandem?
I will begin with the positives, and then supply some cautions.
+ Raleigh has been around for a long time, and generally makes a reliable bike.
+ From reading the specs, no alarm bells go off in my head.
+ The price is quite reasonable for an entry-level tandem, in the cruiser-bike class.
Now the cautions, some of which are totally based on no information but you know the answers:
- One size does not fit all. Given the nature of the bike there's some room for less-than-perfect fit, but I know nothing about the size of your daughter, and esp. your future son-in-law. Might not be a problem, but worth checking.
- Some people have a ball on a cruiser type bike, and "enjoy leisurely week-end rides" means this might include these two. Partly depends on the sort of bikes they are currently riding. If, on the other hand, more of a "road" type bike fits their experience and expectations they might not ride this much.
- Tandeming is not for every couple. To do it, and enjoy it, requires good communication skills, appropriate motivation to make it work, and, in the case of the captain (that'll probably be him), a willingness to accept the rule that "The Stoker Makes No Mistakes" or some variant on that - specifically not blaming the stoker if something goes wrong. That last piece is a matter of character and can be just there or develop with maturity (how easy-going is he?), but without it, you're likely to weaken the marriage, rather than strengthening it. 99% of the folks on this forum have a great relationship that works. It is probably true that at least 99% of them also know some couples who should never get on a tandem. The saying "a tandem will take your relationship where it's going faster" generally applies.
So there. You asked for advice regarding the specific bike, and you'll find some in there. Only you know the answer to the many questions I raised.