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  1. #1
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Hauling a tandem in a CUV w/ truck bed extender?

    I'm car-free and my wife drives a Nissan Rogue CUV. I'm interested in getting an inexpensive tandem for rides on the local greenways trails. I'm looking for ideas on how to transport the bike from our home to wherever we would ride without investing hundreds of dollars in a roof rack and fancy tandem roof mount since I already have a very nice Saris Themla II for transporting my regular bikes.

    Since this bike would just be for casual fun on nice days, one idea I had was to get a truck bed extension and use it to hang the tandem out the back of the vehicle with the liftgate open [tied down a bit] and the back seats folded down.



    Has anyone ever tried something like this before? It seems like it would work okay for occasional short distance transport of the tandem on nice days. The $40 price tag makes it a much more attractive option than investing hundreds in a roof rack and custom tandem rail.

    Tandem owners/rider what say you? Worth a try or stupid idea?

    The tandem would either be a basic $200 'vintage' tandem from craigslist or one of the many low-end Kent tandems currently being sold by Walmart.

  2. #2
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    I don't know your Rogue but if you can get a fair portion of the tandem inside with the ability to lock the fork to something that can not leave the vehicle, I don't see any reason that you can't engineer something simple to hold the back of it to that extender. A board, quick release pins, bungee cords and the like, can solve a lot of short term hauling challenges quite inexpensively. Good luck..go for it. Welcome to Tandems !

    Bill J.

  3. #3
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Thanks for the vote of confidence. My wife mentioned that maybe we could go in together and purchase a low-end tandem as a joint christmas present for ourselves. As with many of the people in this forum, my desire to ride tandem stems from the significant difference in cycling ability between myself and my wife. I feel like if we could ride together it would be more fun for both of us. Also my younger brother only lives a few miles away and so I could likely get some man-on-man tandem action as well!

    If anyone else has ideas, comments, criticisms, suggestions or winning lottery #'s feel free to post them here.

    Thanks.

  4. #4
    Oldie, just not here! Onegun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandsomeRyan View Post
    a Nissan Rogue CUV.
    A what? Oh, I see. The hip, new, cool name the industry has applied to station wagons.

    You can (probably? maybe?) get the bike and both of you inside the station wagon and close the hatch if you have quick-release wheels, (which knocks the Kent out of the running! Stick with the "$200 vintage craigslist tandem". Better bike anyway.)

    You have a split back seat as well as bucket seats up front. What most people do is knock off both wheels, put down a protective cloth, fold both right seats, and have the stoker sit behind the driver, just like you would do on the tandem.

    Total price - a shower curtain or other grease resistant drop cloth.
    BICYCLE - [bahy-si-kuhl] - Noun :> A medical device used to correct the common geriatric condition of OFS, (Old, Fat & Slow), in a manner that does not induce brain-decaying boredom like walking or running.

    2005 Trek T2000 Tandem, 2003 Burley Tosa Tandem, Pacific Dualie beater tandem, and 6 singles including 2 fixies.

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  5. #5
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    I think that you're making this harder than it needs to be.

    A tandem is essentially 8 feet long. Remove the front wheel and you're down to 7'. That'll fit diagionally in a typical 6' PU truck bed.

  6. #6
    Oldie, just not here! Onegun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
    A tandem is essentially 8 feet long. Remove the front wheel and you're down to 7'. That'll fit diagionally in a typical 6' PU truck bed.
    Except that a Nissan Rogue is not a pickup truck. He just used that picture as an example of the "extender".
    BICYCLE - [bahy-si-kuhl] - Noun :> A medical device used to correct the common geriatric condition of OFS, (Old, Fat & Slow), in a manner that does not induce brain-decaying boredom like walking or running.

    2005 Trek T2000 Tandem, 2003 Burley Tosa Tandem, Pacific Dualie beater tandem, and 6 singles including 2 fixies.

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  7. #7
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Onegun View Post
    Except that a Nissan Rogue is not a pickup truck.
    This.^

    The rogue is a crossover (or a station-wagon for you old folks )


  8. #8
    rebmeM roineS JanMM's Avatar
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    CUV stands for what?
    RANS V3 (steel), RANS V-Rex, RANS Screamer

  9. #9
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
    CUV stands for what?
    Crossover Utility Vehicle.

    Us hip young folks need these kind of buzz words made up by marketing companies to feel empowered about riding around in something so station-wagon-esque.

    FWIW: Consumer Reports is where I learned it is referred to as a "CUV".

  10. #10
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Onegun View Post
    Except that a Nissan Rogue is not a pickup truck. He just used that picture as an example of the "extender".
    Same reasoning still applies. One measurement is worth 1,000 guesses. A tandem is roughly 40" tall so if your plan is to transport it standing up, you need a vehicle with a rear opening 40" high.

  11. #11
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    I would lay it down sideways and remove one (or both) wheels if needed to get as much of it in the car as possible. If it weren't snowing outside I'd go get some measurements of exactly how much space I have inside the car and how much bike would be sticking out the back. I know this isn't an ideal method of transport but I just can't justify a new roof rack ($400?) and a tandem rail for it ($300?) to carry around a crappy old [or crappy new] tandem.

    I found a "Cignal Melbourne Express" on craigslist for $190. I emailed the owner but I haven't heard back about what condition the bike is in. From what I can tell via online research, the bike would be from the mid-90's and probably retailed for about $600 originally.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandsomeRyan View Post
    I just can't justify a new roof rack ($400?) and a tandem rail for it ($300?) to carry around a crappy old [or crappy new] tandem.
    Are you lucky!

    I have a complete Thule roof rack system, including a tandem carrier, that I'd let go for the cost of shipping. PM me if you're interested.

  13. #13
    Senior Member WebsterBikeMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandsomeRyan View Post
    I would lay it down sideways and remove one (or both) wheels if needed to get as much of it in the car as possible. If it weren't snowing outside I'd go get some measurements of exactly how much space I have inside the car and how much bike would be sticking out the back. I know this isn't an ideal method of transport but I just can't justify a new roof rack ($400?) and a tandem rail for it ($300?) to carry around a crappy old [or crappy new] tandem.

    I found a "Cignal Melbourne Express" on craigslist for $190. I emailed the owner but I haven't heard back about what condition the bike is in. From what I can tell via online research, the bike would be from the mid-90's and probably retailed for about $600 originally.
    I wouldn't put $190 into a tandem that was $600 in the mid-90s.

    For a point of reference - we have a custom Bilenky, which probably means it is a bit longer than what you'll find - 99 inches tire (outside) -to-tire. I know because I was measuring its clearance for winter coexistance with the the car in the garage. (I can't say storage, since we still ride if it's not too extremely cold or dangerous). It has couplers (which I'm certain you aren't interested in), so we split it in half to put it in the car. However, the point here is when we first brought it home, we took off both wheels, and laid it down in the back of our Prius, with the passenger seat all the way forward.

    What you can fit in a CUV - which should be bigger than the Prius, will depend on your size (how far forward can the passenger seat be is one part of it, but more importantly is how long and high is the frame). It's nice not having to remove the bars or lower the saddle, but those can be done. We now have racks and fenders on, and I doubt we could squeeze the bike into the car without splitting it in half.

    But if you don't need racks or fenders - or at least not fenders - there's a good chance it will fit.

  14. #14
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
    Are you lucky!

    I have a complete Thule roof rack system, including a tandem carrier, that I'd let go for the cost of shipping. PM me if you're interested.
    PM sent.

    Quote Originally Posted by WebsterBikeMan View Post
    I wouldn't put $190 into a tandem that was $600 in the mid-90s.
    I guess I'm still struggling with pricing of tandem bikes.

    For regular bikes it is easier to look at how nice the frame is, how nice the gibblets bolted to the frame are, and how many similar bikes are available and make an educated guess as to what a fair price would be. With more 'exotic' or 'enthusiast' type bikes like recumbents or tandems there seems to be a difference in depreciation as there are fewer bikes available and the ones that do come to market seem to hold their value..? If this were a 'single person' bike made of the same tubing with the same components it almost certainly would not be worth almost $200 (even 2 single bikes wouldn't fetch that sum) but because it is a tandem it seems like the rarity adds value. I'm not trying to argue with you about what the bike is or isn't worth; I'm just thinking out loud.

  15. #15
    Oldie, just not here! Onegun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch
    Are you lucky!

    I have a complete Thule roof rack system, including a tandem carrier, that I'd let go for the cost of shipping. PM me if you're interested.
    Quote Originally Posted by HandsomeRyan View Post
    PM sent.
    And here you thought he was just some kind of retro-grouch!!
    BICYCLE - [bahy-si-kuhl] - Noun :> A medical device used to correct the common geriatric condition of OFS, (Old, Fat & Slow), in a manner that does not induce brain-decaying boredom like walking or running.

    2005 Trek T2000 Tandem, 2003 Burley Tosa Tandem, Pacific Dualie beater tandem, and 6 singles including 2 fixies.

    TampaBayCycling.com - A LOCAL Cycling Forum
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  16. #16
    Senior Member WebsterBikeMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandsomeRyan View Post
    I guess I'm still struggling with pricing of tandem bikes.
    My original comment is just that - mine. The other thread has lots of conflicting responses. Responding more directly to your response about struggling with pricing...

    Look up Mark Livingood's used tandem pricing spreadsheet for an idea of depreciation.

    I group tandems into three categories. I'll refer to them as top, middle, and bottom with no value judgement, only pricing implied.

    Top includes most CF, Ti, and other exotics, mostly custom, with high end componentry. Most such bikes are specialized to their purpose, and accessible only to those with larger than average budgets. It is the rare buyer for whom it makes sense to get a tandem in the top category as their first tandem. Price range is mostly $6,000-12,000 although the sky is pretty much the limit.

    Middle includes lots of steel and Al frames, with componentry running from mid-grade on up. Adding couplers can push the pricing into the top range. Bikes in this category are mostly made by builders for whom the tandem market represents a signficant fraction of their sales. Custom sizing is usually, although not always, an up-charge. Relative to the overall price of the bike, the up-charge is not huge. A few toward the bottom of this range only come in stock sizes. What sets these off from the bottom range is the number of tandem-specific parts that really will let these bikes be used for a large variety of uses, and they will still hold up to it. I'm talking road bikes, not Mountain (because I know too little about the latter). These are bikes that will last at least several 10s of thousands of miles, well maintained, and are maintainable. For many couples a bike in this category is never upgraded, and need not be. Tandem-specific parts include the fork, headset, wheels, bottom brackets and eccentric. I may have forgotten something. Prices start in the $2000s and go up to the low 7s. Used starter bikes in this category come cheaper, hold their value relatively well for re-sale, and the main reason to replace them is fit - often a compromise when shopping the used market when there are so few available at any given time.

    At the bottom is a mix of a few road bikes (drop-bars, geometry like a mid-range road bike) and a collection of cruiser-type bikes. These are more than adequate for some folks, and totally useless for others. This is where you get comments about how you plan to use it. The bike you've been looking at fits the cruiser category. If you're looking at a bike for moderate length rides on not-too-hilly terrain with not-too-much load beyond yourselves, and you're not looking for crazy-fast riding, this may be just fine. There are lots of folks (few on this forum) for which that category is just right. And if you're looking for something more, but you want to see how the two of you get along on a bike where you're tethered to each other at the pedals, it may well do the job, as long as you remember that it isn't going to be the bike you take touring (credit card or otherwise) or tearing up and down significant hills. It is a whole lot less expensive than the used mid-range you might find if you keep looking. New prices on this range run from around $250 for a bike that needs work on arrival (some have been happy with that), to a bit under $1000.

  17. #17
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    What you post makes sense. Thanks for taking the time to type it all out for me.

  18. #18
    Senior Member bike00's Avatar
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    Back to the original question concerning how to carry his tandem on/in his wife's car:

    With the front wheel off, the bike should easily fit on the back of the vehicle using most any good rack designed for multiple single bikes. Properly possitioned, it won't stick out the sides much, if at all. Your vehicle may vary.

    I would not advise carrying the bike with the hatch open. Most vehicles will suck exhaust into an open hatch when driving down the road.

  19. #19
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bike00 View Post
    With the front wheel off, the bike should easily fit on the back of the vehicle using most any good rack designed for multiple single bikes. Properly possitioned, it won't stick out the sides much, if at all. Your vehicle may vary.
    My rear rack is the Saris Thelma 2 like the one pictured below. It is a very nice rack but it is designed exclusively for standard bikes.



    After more research on this forum I'm hoping I can fit the entire bike into the car with the hatch closed. If a tandem can fit in a Honda Fit I hope I can do something similar in my wifes Rogue.

    Another angle I'm investigating is welding up a rack similar to the Draftmaster but just for one tandem bike. Basically just an "L" shape made of 2 inch square steel tubing with a fork mount at the top and a wheel tray at the bottom. The horizontal part of the "L" would go in the trailer hitch receiver and the bike would "hang" vertically behind the car.


  20. #20
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    I didn't get any pictures of my own but the tandem did fit inside the Rogue using the same technique as the famous "Tandem Bike in a Honda Fit" pictures.

  21. #21
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    You could spend more on tandem specific bike rack/truck extender than the tandem is worth!
    Pop off both wheel (remove seatpost with saddles and stoker bars attached, if necessary). Flop down the rear seats of your vehicle and put tandem inside, either standing up of laying down.
    Think outrside of the box!
    Have hauled tandem in '60s VW Squareback, 84 Honda Hatchback and now inside a 97 Honda station wagon. Works fine for us.
    Quality tandems do keep their resale price and can rack up great mileage.
    Have designed/owned 4 custom tandems. Our Assenmacher we rode for 64,000 miles; our Colin Laing for 56,000 miles; our Co-Motion 57,000 miles and our current carbon fiber Zona tandem just rolled over it's 25,000th mile this year. Our first 3 custom tandems were sold for $1,000+, used, with us telling the owners how many miles were on them. We do maintain our own bikes and keep 'em in good condition.
    Quality lasts . . .
    Pedal on TWOgether!
    Rudy and Kay/zonatandem

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