Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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!

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 05-14-10, 11:48 AM   #1
rdtompki
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
rdtompki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Hollister, CA
Bikes: Volagi, daVinci Joint Venture
Posts: 3,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Anyone Else Cursing Their 9-spd 11-34?

My wife and I really need our 24-34 when the pitch gets over 10%, but I'm almost at the point where I'd rather walk these stretches than put up with the large gaps in the overall cassette. At our age we're happy to cruise along at 19 mph or so in the flats which puts us in our 48-17 combination.

If the road just turns up a bit or we turn more into the wind the 17-20-23 just kill our speed since SWMBO can't spin much over 92 or 93 (no complaints mind you). The 13-30 has a much more reasonable 17-19-21 progression.

Am I alone here? Granted, our drive train is a bit unusual with effectively 24-36-48-60 chainrings, but the cassette jumps will be the same regardless of the chainrings. The only saving grace with the 11-34 is that the 36 and 48 almost provide split gearing: I don't mind double-shifting on occasion, but don't want it to be standard practice.

Should I just slow down (more) and enjoy the roses?
rdtompki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-10, 01:45 PM   #2
Homeyba
Senior Member
 
Homeyba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Central Coast, California
Bikes: Colnago C-50, Calfee Dragonfly Tandem, Specialized Allez Pro, Peugeot Competition Light
Posts: 3,370
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm with you on the spacing issue, I hate huge spaces between gears. I like my 11-28 on the back with the 32/42/55 in the front. We've done some pretty stout climbs with that gearing but we do struggle a bit when the pitches start pushing 15-20%. Gearing is a very personal thing and you should go with what works best for you. If I were in your shoes though, I'd sacrifice some top or bottom end and go for a tighter cluster. For most people it makes more sense to sacrifice on the top end.
Homeyba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-10, 02:42 PM   #3
Carbonfiberboy 
just another gosling
 
Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Everett, WA
Bikes: CoMo Speedster 2003, Trek 5200, CAAD 9, Fred 2004
Posts: 10,993
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We're working as hard as we can to wear out our 11-34. We'll replace it with a 12-34 and get rid of some huge gaps. We run 52-39-26 in the front, and with our current cassette we have the same gears in either 52 or 39 in the middle of the cassette, which is totally frustrating. The 12-34 will be better in our flat cruising range because then the front will split out the gears. I don't mind the big jumps in the back in the lower gears. So we slow down a hair to get the cadence right. Big deal. But on the flat, when there's a 14 rpm difference between one gear and the next, that's a pain.

We don't care about losing the 11 cog. We can coast downhill faster than most tandems can pedal, in fact we pass pedalers all the time. Not sure why. We're not that fat.
Carbonfiberboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-10, 02:47 PM   #4
merlinextraligh
pan y agua
 
merlinextraligh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Jacksonville
Bikes: Wilier Zero 7; Merlin Extralight; Co-Motion Robusta; Schwinn Paramount; Motobecane Phantom Cross; Cervelo P2; Motebecane Ti Fly 29er; Calfee Dragonfly Tandem
Posts: 29,089
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
With the 60 effective large ring, going to a 12-34 would make a lot of sense.
__________________
You could fall off a cliff and die.
You could get lost and die.
You could hit a tree and die.
OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.
merlinextraligh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 06:59 AM   #5
ct-vt-trekker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: CT, VT
Bikes:
Posts: 327
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My wife and I were just talking about this the other night after a ride. We’re new owners of a Trek T1000 with 11-34 9Sp cassette. It’s our first tandem. We are both strong riders and we can’t stand the large gaps in this cassette.
Our single bikes are Trek Madones with 10-sp cassettes. I’ve been thinking of trying a 11-28 cassette. We really don’t need the lower couple of gears on most rides. Our crankset is 52/42/30 so the 30 gives us low gearing anyway. If the 11-28 works we’ll get a second set of wheels and we can switch between the two sets if we need the lower gears, like on our trips to Vermont! Anyone else do this?
ct-vt-trekker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 08:22 AM   #6
twicethefun
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Bikes:
Posts: 32
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We couldn't stand it (11-34) either so we use it only for loaded touring; otherwise, we use a 12-25t.

If you need that lower gearing, as has been said, your only option is to switch to 12-34 (no 13-34 available?).



Those riding a 52-42-30 (or the like) [I]old[I] standard triple setup really should try 52-38-30 : spend more time on the big and middle chainring, use the 30t chainring only as backup. This is especially true for those used to riding double chainrings.
The down side is that the 38 middle chainring requires the use of the newer front derailleurs.

Carbonfiberboy : if you wear a cassette, it can only be because you don't replace your chain when it's time! Chain replacement is part of regular bike maintenance. Do so and your bike will shift and ride better (metal wear is friction).
Sorry, I can't stop miself from preaching when it comes to late chain changes and chainring/cassette wear that shouldn't be.
twicethefun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 10:47 AM   #7
Retro Grouch 
Senior Member
 
Retro Grouch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: St Peters, Missouri
Bikes: Rans Rockst (Retro rocket) Rans Enduro Sport (Retro racket) Catrike 559, Merin Bear Valley (beater bike).
Posts: 26,396
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Hmmm - 4 X 9 = 36 potential gear combinations.

With that big of a split in chainring sizes it seems like there should be a way to make a closer ratio cassette work for you.
Retro Grouch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 03:02 PM   #8
rdtompki
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
rdtompki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Hollister, CA
Bikes: Volagi, daVinci Joint Venture
Posts: 3,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Harris Cyclery does sell a made-up 13-34. I think what I'll try is making up a 13-34 from a combination of my 13-30 and 11-34, but it may be that too many of the cogs in the 11-34 are pinned. If we were a few years younger we would never need the 34, but such is the nature of life. We've only been riding the tandem for 1 year so I'm holding out hope that we'll get strong enough to ditch the 34.

We do spin out a 60-13 at about 32 mph, but it's unusual for us to feel compelled to pedal above this speed, maybe on a long 3% downhill. Much above that grade our just-right 350 lb. team weight does all the heavy lifting.

I did use my 36t chainring more on today's ride in the rollers. This chainring puts me in the tighter rear spacing. The daVinci has a longer chainline than a standard tandem so the cross chaining in this configuration is not so objectionable.
rdtompki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 04:05 PM   #9
conspiratemus1
Used to be Conspiratemus
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Hamilton ON Canada
Bikes:
Posts: 776
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Agree, 12-25 is fine for us, too. Around here we can climb anything (standing maybe) with a 32->25. For Europe, we'll go back to the cassette with the 32T cog but we'll replace the 11T with the 12 from the "home-ice" cassette. Close spacing trumps a high high any day.

(Rdtompki, you're kickin' serious butt cruising at 19 mph, is all I can say.)
conspiratemus1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 05:03 PM   #10
rdtompki
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
rdtompki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Hollister, CA
Bikes: Volagi, daVinci Joint Venture
Posts: 3,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
19 mph is flat, no wind and not at the end of no stinkin' 60 mile ride. Best we could do today with a tailwind after 65 miles was about 20 mph so that puts the 19 in perspective. Once the prospect of hills is behind us, the prospect of food in front of us, my stoker and I shift into senior-citizen overdrive
rdtompki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 05:11 PM   #11
Murf524
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Bikes:
Posts: 103
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
12 x 25 or 11 x 28 is nice. We had a 13x34 but there was a jump from 17 to a 21 that ALWAYS happened at the wrong time. We're Florida folks so we opted for the 11x28 for more top end, close ratio in the higher gears and the fact that we don't have "real" climbs within 300 miles of home. In fact we did a century ride last year and stayed in the the big ring all day using all the gears in the back due to a buggered front derailleur.
Murf524 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 05:29 PM   #12
Eddie50
Blind Runner
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Quebec, Canada
Bikes: 2006 Trek T2000 Tandem 2010 Rocky Mountain Element Team
Posts: 86
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I just ordered a 12-27T because like said before, the gaps are way too big to be useful around here. We will see how it will do soon enough.
Eddie50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-10, 05:55 PM   #13
zonatandem
Senior Member
 
zonatandem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Tucson, AZ
Bikes: Custom Zona c/f tandem + Scott Plasma single
Posts: 10,785
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Been using an 11/34 cassette for years. Seldom get to use the 34 but it can be nice, especially here in Arizona and at our age (77 and 75).
Used to get away easily with a 28T rear cog when younger . . .
Growin' old is not for sissies!
Pedal on TWOgether!
Rudy and Kay/zonatandem
zonatandem is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-10, 12:06 PM   #14
rdtompki
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
rdtompki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Hollister, CA
Bikes: Volagi, daVinci Joint Venture
Posts: 3,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I went ahead and ordered a single 34t cog from Harris Cyclery. This will let me convert my 13-30 to a 13-34 by removing the 14t and adding the 34t. An unpinned 34t is not ideal, but the freehub body is steel; this is a pretty inexpensive experiment. Thanks for the helpful responses from all.
rdtompki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-10, 02:21 PM   #15
merlinextraligh
pan y agua
 
merlinextraligh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Jacksonville
Bikes: Wilier Zero 7; Merlin Extralight; Co-Motion Robusta; Schwinn Paramount; Motobecane Phantom Cross; Cervelo P2; Motebecane Ti Fly 29er; Calfee Dragonfly Tandem
Posts: 29,089
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdtompki View Post
We do spin out a 60-13 at about 32 mph, but it's unusual for us to feel compelled to pedal above this speed, maybe on a long 3% downhill. Much above that grade our just-right 350 lb. team weight does all the heavy lifting.

I realize everyone is different,and you have to keep your stoker happy, but you might work on seeing if you can raise what is a comfortable cadence for your team.

60x13 is 33.4 mph at 90 rpm.
__________________
You could fall off a cliff and die.
You could get lost and die.
You could hit a tree and die.
OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.
merlinextraligh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-10, 03:38 PM   #16
rdtompki
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
rdtompki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Hollister, CA
Bikes: Volagi, daVinci Joint Venture
Posts: 3,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
MEL,
Agree completely on raising my stoker's cadence. My stoker uses a Thudbuster and as mentioned in your response to the suspension seat post question, I suspect the Thudbuster limits my stoker's cadence. Nonetheless, her cadence has risen from mid-80's to almost the mid-90's over the last year and I'm only good to about 100. Also, I think our daVinci's drivetrain is a bit of a disadvantage at the higher cadences; still wouldn't trade though for our application.
rdtompki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 06:34 AM   #17
merlinextraligh
pan y agua
 
merlinextraligh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Jacksonville
Bikes: Wilier Zero 7; Merlin Extralight; Co-Motion Robusta; Schwinn Paramount; Motobecane Phantom Cross; Cervelo P2; Motebecane Ti Fly 29er; Calfee Dragonfly Tandem
Posts: 29,089
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdtompki View Post
Also, I think our daVinci's drivetrain is a bit of a disadvantage at the higher cadences; still wouldn't trade though for our application.
I can see that. If the captain pedals a faster cadence than the stoker, is the stoker essentially freewheeling?
__________________
You could fall off a cliff and die.
You could get lost and die.
You could hit a tree and die.
OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.
merlinextraligh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 08:16 AM   #18
steve53mg
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Long Island, NY
Bikes: Serotta Legend Ti, Santa Cruz Heckler, Santana Visa TAndem
Posts: 198
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I went from an 11-34 to a 12-34 and it did tighten things up a bit. I am resigned, however to, shifting the front as necessary. I don't want to give up the lower gearing, so I figure that there has to be some sort of give-back! I don't mind the double shift, especially on a long stretch. I got used to it, because on my single, I went to compact 9 speed gearing. There comes a point with that gearing, where one must transition from the middle to the large chainring. At that point I am ready to shift up 3 cogs in back when I go to the big ring.
On the tandem, the 34 and the granny ring lets us climb anything (my stoker hates hills), but talk about gaps! When I drop to the small chainring, I will be spinning like mad, so I have to shift down 2 or 3 cogs to get it under control!
steve53mg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 08:46 AM   #19
Possum Roadkill
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Bikes: Giant TCR, Santana Team Scandium, Co-Motion Equator, Giant NRS Carbon
Posts: 196
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have an 11-28 and 11-34, swapping them out depending on the ride conditions. The 11-28 gear choices are better, but not just because of the overall range, but because Shimano makes the spacing between the higher gears closer while IRD evenly spaces the jumps all along the cassette. The Shimano cassettes give you more choices where you really need more choices. It's a shame they don't make an 11-34 yet. For the first double century we did for this year, I went with the 11-28 and we were fine. It wasn't too hilly and past rides we were able to stay out of the small ring with the 11-34. I considered going with this for Davis, however changed my mind and I'm glad I did. What I am thinking will be a good rule to go by is if we can do a ride without using the small ring with the 11-34, then we can use the 11-28, but use the small ring.
Possum Roadkill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 12:01 PM   #20
rdtompki
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
rdtompki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Hollister, CA
Bikes: Volagi, daVinci Joint Venture
Posts: 3,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've got a number of cassettes to choose from and my preference would be our 13-30 which is certainly good for anything up to 10%, but riding a 100K or Century for the first time I'd rather err on the side of caution. I'm looking forward to trying the 13-34 (13-15-17-19-21-24-27-30-34) which provides pretty decent spacing in the part of the cassette I use the most. That's just us, however. Different strokes for different folks as can be seen from the diversity of response.
rdtompki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 01:14 PM   #21
Ritterview
Tandem Vincitur
 
Ritterview's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern California
Bikes: BMC Pro Machine SLC01, Specialized Globe, Burley Rock 'N Roll tandem, Calfee Dragonfly tandem.
Posts: 3,317
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdtompki View Post
My wife and I really need our 24-34 when the pitch gets over 10%, but I'm almost at the point where I'd rather walk these stretches than put up with the large gaps in the overall cassette.
Not that this is a feasible solution for you, but as an example of the advantages of having more cogs/closely spaced, I really like my Campy 11-speed (12-27) on a tandem. Having the close spacing with 11 speeds allows smooth fine gradation in shifting, allowing us to keep an optimum cadence and effort while maintaining momentum on uphills, downhills, wind changes, etc. It is most helpful when riding in a group with more rapidly accelerating/decelerating half-bikes. We are better able to avoid getting dropped by strong riders, and we are more appreciated for our smoothness by the wheel-suckers behind us.

Our 12-27 11-speed does work with a triple even though there is no medium cage RD available. Campy makes a 12-29 cassette, I cannot vouch that this would work with a triple. A 12-29 11-speed would be nice on a tandem, as it would combine a wide spread in gears, but with fewer gaps.

Will the 11-speed hold up to the greater demands of a tandem? I don't know, we are the guinea pigs.
Ritterview is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 01:26 PM   #22
rmac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 569
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritterview View Post
Not that this is a feasible solution for you, but as an example of the advantages of having more cogs/closely spaced, I really like my Campy 11-speed (12-27) on a tandem. Having the close spacing with 11 speeds allows smooth fine gradation in shifting, allowing us to keep an optimum cadence and effort while maintaining momentum on uphills, downhills, wind changes, etc. It is most helpful when riding in a group with more rapidly accelerating/decelerating half-bikes. We are better able to avoid getting dropped by strong riders, and we are more appreciated for our smoothness by the wheel-suckers behind us.

Our 12-27 11-speed does work with a triple even though there is no medium cage RD available. Campy makes a 12-29 cassette, I cannot vouch that this would work with a triple. A 12-29 11-speed would be nice on a tandem, as it would combine a wide spread in gears, but with fewer gaps.

Will the 11-speed hold up to the greater demands of a tandem? I don't know, we are the guinea pigs.
Are there any tandem specific hubs that work with an 11-speed cassette? White Industries says their Campy tandem hubs are not compatible.
rmac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 03:12 PM   #23
TandemNut
Junior Member
 
TandemNut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 15
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Try the Shimano 12-36 9 speed cassette; We just tried one an I surprised how much closer the cogs felt than the stock 11-34 that we normally use.
TandemNut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-10, 03:28 PM   #24
Ritterview
Tandem Vincitur
 
Ritterview's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern California
Bikes: BMC Pro Machine SLC01, Specialized Globe, Burley Rock 'N Roll tandem, Calfee Dragonfly tandem.
Posts: 3,317
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by rmac View Post
Are there any tandem specific hubs that work with an 11-speed cassette? White Industries says their Campy tandem hubs are not compatible.
My frame is 135 mm OLD, and thus uses mountain rather than 145 mm tandem hubs, these the DT Swiss 240s disc brake.



Thus the DT 540 tandem might be the first place to look, as DT appears inclined to offer Campy 11 spd on its hubs. It might be difficult to find an answer, because there probably haven't been too many to try.



Edit:

I spoke to Paul (in Marketing) at DT Swiss. He confirmed that a 540 tandem will take a Campy cassette using a
conversion kit, and this will work with both 10 and 11 speeds.

Last edited by Ritterview; 05-17-10 at 04:57 PM.
Ritterview is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-10, 04:14 AM   #25
max1391401
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Bikes:
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Has anyone thought about a running half step and granny? Can you put a big chainring in the middle? We currently have, 32, 44, 55 and 11-32 on the back. The 12-14 and 14-16 gaps completely kill us, so we wondered about running 32, 50, 54 in the front and half step the gears. Providing you can put a big chainring in the middle, I think its the perfect solution to everyones problem

Current


Potential


Notice how there are small gaps from around 26km/h to 40km/h, which is exactly where you ride the most. I just realised thats with 51, and 55, rather than the less rare 50 54, but it would have the same effect
max1391401 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:47 PM.