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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 10-16-09, 08:53 AM   #1
djembob02
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C'dale RT2 vs. Co-mo torpedo

I hate to post another one of these kind of messages, but I am torn in my decision and would love a little advice. I am strongly considering getting a 2-seater in order to drop 20+ pounds from the triplet that is often times ridden with only 2 riders.

My primary stoker is my daughter (8 years old). I just took off the child-stoker kit earlier this summer and the distance from BB to top of seat tube is 16", with about an inch of seatpost.

Unfortunately my budget doesn't allow for a Calfee, paketa, or some other sub-30 pound tandem, I'll be looking at more like $4K or less. This budget also rules out the 2-3 seat convertible options.

Of course, I know that a co-motion periscope would be our best option for adjustability so I'm looking at the torpedo 700c (I just wish I could get the hammerhead, oh well, in another lifetime). Then I realized that a C'dale T2 actually has a very short stoker seat-tube as well and would probably fit. The two bikes are spec'd almost the same, but the C'dale is Aluminum. From what I've been able to find, the C'dale might weigh about 5 pounds less (not exactly sure about this). Plus the C'dale is about $1,000 less. That money could easily go to other things in life, or could be used for upgrades. I have no experience with c'dale, but I know co-mo's quality and have had fantastic experiences riding as stoker on a few.

I'm checking out local shops to see if I test ride them. unfortunately, they won't be carried by the same shop, but I do have Precision tandems as well as plenty of local c'dale shops.

Any thoughts on which way to go? Any other suggestions?
Thanks
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Old 10-16-09, 09:09 AM   #2
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As much as I like Co-Motion's products and the folks who own and work there, I think the sum total of your analysis is pretty straight forward: If the C'dale fits... what's not to like?

However, if you've got an extra $1k in your checking account and the fit is questionable, or if you see a long term benefit of having the inherent adjustability of both the front & rear riding positions on the Co-Motion, or if you'd just like the cachet of the Co-Motion brand and can appreciate the fine details of their made-in-the-USA products (Hmmm, hard to believe that would have ever been an issue with C'dale), then perhaps the extra $1k would be worth it. Trimming off 5 lbs is interesting, but not all that compelling unless there are other tangible benefits to be had, but it's definitely not a deal breaker in my book.
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Old 10-16-09, 10:45 AM   #3
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Go with the C'dale, take the leftover $1k and get a carbon fork and some lightweight rim brakes and drop another 5lbs or so.
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Old 10-16-09, 02:48 PM   #4
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To be fair... I'm a bit biased, so it is an easy decision: 'if it fits" the C'dale RT2!

Bill J.
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Old 10-16-09, 07:36 PM   #5
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Have ridden extensively on Co-Mos and also a few thousand miles on C'dales. Both good choices but wallet will decide which one to get.
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Old 10-17-09, 08:27 AM   #6
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Try to test ride both tandems. If a Co-Mo Torpedo is not available try a Perisope, the extra $1K might be a good investment. I would not worry about the weight difference, my aluminum Santanta is less than 2 pounds lighter than my steel Co-Mo and I don't notice the difference. The Co-Mo would also get you Precision Tandems who would be more tandem knowledgable than a Cdale shop.
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Old 10-17-09, 02:49 PM   #7
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We have an 2005 Cannondale RT3000. This is the only tandem we have owned so I cannot compare it to a Co-Motion, but we're very happy with it. I replaced the stock fork with a Winwood Muddy Cross (tandem rated), the brakes with Avid single digit 7's, and the stoker seat post with a CC Thudbuster. I don't know the weight, but I would guess that it is well under 35 lbs. It is stiff, but tracks really well on fast decents. For the money, I don't think (IMHO) there is a better value out there, especially for first timers like us. I see late model C'dales on Craigslist periodically in the $1,700 range (Sacramento, SF Bay area). Maybe someday I'll replace it with an uber tandem (when bike lust gets the better of me), but right now the C'dale is perfect for us.
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Old 10-17-09, 03:16 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Litespeed51 View Post
We have an 2005 Cannondale RT3000. This is the only tandem we have owned so I cannot compare it to a Co-Motion, but we're very happy with it. I replaced the stock fork with a Winwood Muddy Cross (tandem rated), the brakes with Avid single digit 7's, and the stoker seat post with a CC Thudbuster. I don't know the weight, but I would guess that it is well under 35 lbs. It is stiff, but tracks really well on fast decents. For the money, I don't think (IMHO) there is a better value out there, especially for first timers like us. I see late model C'dales on Craigslist periodically in the $1,700 range (Sacramento, SF Bay area). Maybe someday I'll replace it with an uber tandem (when bike lust gets the better of me), but right now the C'dale is perfect for us.
We live in an area where the gravity must be stronger than other areas. I just weighed our 2004 M/S road Cannondale and it was 38.44 lbs. It's back to being fairly stock and has Shimano M970 pedals. Originally, it was a bit over 40 lbs. with rear rack and heavier pedals.

Last edited by rmac; 10-17-09 at 03:50 PM.
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Old 10-17-09, 04:18 PM   #9
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Litespeed51, what planet are you on , I highly doubt you could get well under 35 pounds if all you swapped out were the fork and brakes. I did that and more to our 2004 and just barely got to 35 pounds, there is a thread on here documenting all the weights and the eventual weight loss. I would suspect that without also changing the wheels your Dale was probably closer to 36-37 pounds.
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Old 10-18-09, 10:39 PM   #10
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Thanks for the advice. I went to the C'dale shop and test rode the 2010 RT2. We rode there on the triplet (6 miles), test rode, and then rode back home.

It was nice, but not as remarkable as I'd expected. Although, truth be told, most of the issues were simple adjustment stuff. The disks brakes were rubbing and both derraileurs weren't adjusted right.
My guess is that I am the first person who had ridden it. I expected them to offer to make adjustments, but they didn't. Then again, they acted very surprised that we brought our own clipless pedals.

Anyway, Because of these things, my first reaction was not being amazed at having dropped 20 pounds of bike. It certainly accelerated a bit faster but the main deal is that it did fit my little one. So, knowing that a L/S would fit us just fine, I started looking in craigslist.

I found an 09 RT3 new old stock from a shop in TX for a lot less than the new models. Its not spec'd out as nice, but the frame is the same (and better color), it was a lot cheaper, and I am sure it will work out well. Since I have lots of experience working on my triplet and single bike, I am sure I will slowly upgrade things as needed.

I'll post pictures on the happy tandem couples thread when I receive it and make adjustments.
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