Originally Posted by lmkbubba33
Am I correct in thinking that the Mocha is slightly more versatile...better for road biking, crushed limestone trails, centuries, etc.?
Actually, I would say the frames are nearly an even match in that they share very similar geometry (head & Captain's seat tube angles, fork rake), use the same heat treated, butted tubing, and wheelsets (Hugi hubs w/Velocity Deep-V rims). The Periscope gains some stiffness by having the very short rear seat tube and steeply sloped top tube which off-sets the elimination of the internal tube that you see on the Mocha and the seat tube "masts" probably off-set any weight advantage that the Periscope's shorter frame might have less the internal tube... so, again, probably a wash. The stoker's seat tube "appears" to be much steeper than the Captain's despite what the specs show and may create an issue with obtaining proper saddle set-back for adults; however, an off-set seat post would easily remedy that.
All of the other differences are in the components. The Periscope is marketed as a road bike with more economical cranks, shifters, and derailleurs than the Mocha in road bike configuration (105 vs Ultegra, XT vs XTR, FSA vs RaceFace, Avid SD5 vs Avid SD7, etc...). The Mocha off-road configuration gives you the option of either Enduro (drop-bar/Ultegra STI) or MTB XC (flat-bar/RapidFire) but is otherwise uses the same components as the road version, including the cranks/chainrings. Both road bikes come with the same 26 x 1.25mm tires whereas the off-road has a slightly more aggressive and wider tire.... but tires are easy to change to suit riding conditions.
The drive trains are essentially geared the same all three configurations:
The Periscope is fitted with an 11x32t cassette & 53/42/30 chainrings.
The Mochas (both versions) use 11x34t cassette & 54/44/32 chainrings.
So, at the end of the day, the only real difference would be any unique handling characteristics detected during a test ride (which would probably be small and quickly assimilated) and the lower standover height and shorter captain's top tube on the 18/11 "short" model and the 1" shorter stoker compartment on the Periscope (27.5" vs 28.5" on the Mocha). Well, and the aesthetics. Ultimately, the Periscope is really designed for use by very short teams or adults who plan to ride with a growing child or children of different ages, hence the 18 "Long" with it's 22.5" captain's top tube and the adjustable seat masts. The Mocha is a conventional tandem that was designed to be smaller than the models produced by Co-Motion's peers. If you "fit" on the small-size Mocha, would prefer the higher-grade components, and the extra $$ for those higher-grade components, that may be a good choice. It's an excellent tandem. Of course, there aren't any dogs in the brands or models you've listed, so a proper fit seems to be the real dependent variable in your decision.
Last edited by livngood; 08-19-04 at 07:23 AM.