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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 03-14-11, 06:49 AM   #1
timthorn
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Shopping for First Tandem: KHS

After queering the local bike shops in the Leavenworth/Lawrence areas, all I could find where several new KHS Elites and their respective into road tandem. For older reviews, users posted that the frames left a bit to be desired, but otherwise a great buy for new tandem riders.

Does this still hold true?

My wife and I test rode the Elite and enjoyed it. The price of $1599 seems about right.

Would you all suggest going with the KHS for a first time tandem? We searched for used tandems in the area, but only located several Schwinn board walk style cruisers, which do not fit our requirements.
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Old 03-14-11, 08:02 AM   #2
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Here's a good bit of discussion on KHS- positive on balance.

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...?highlight=KHS
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Old 03-14-11, 08:07 AM   #3
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Leavenworth, Kansas. Have you checked "Precision Tandems"? I think that they are in Kansas City. I'm thinking it would be well worth the road trip even if you ultimately decide not to buy from them.
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Old 03-14-11, 08:19 AM   #4
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I can't offer comments on the KHS but it can never hurt to visit with a tandem expert and quality company, so......

+ 1 Precision Tandems..Shawnee KS

Bill J
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Old 03-15-11, 05:55 AM   #5
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Thank you all for the responses. My wife and I will head over to Precision this weekend.

Prices are equally as important as over all quality for us, so that limits our selection.
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Old 03-15-11, 02:40 PM   #6
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I test rode a KHS Sport at Family Bikes on Wornall in KC. Very nice folks. They had one leftover KHS in stock at about a $300 discount from MSRP, this was a week and a half ago. I was tempted, but lucked into a used super nice Burley Tandem that day instead at half the cost. If I hadn't found the Burley, I would have bought the KHS that day.

Anyway, just saw your post and thought I'd mention that I saw that sweet price on the KHS. If you want a road bike, the sport would probably not be your bike, but for $800 it was a nice entry point into tandems. It rode quite well, I thought, but I'm new to tandems so take my opinion with a grain of salt.

Family Bicycles, 7140 Wornall, KC. I only mention this since it looks like you are close enough to KC to where it might help you. I have zero interest in or connection to that store.
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Old 03-15-11, 05:20 PM   #7
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Ahhh, you never forget your first one. The first tandem we road was a KHS rental out at Cycle Corner in Frenchtown, NJ. It was a 26" wheel, straight-bar version, and was great for the exercise path there along the river. Nice ride along the river, stopped for lunch half-way... stoker was sold on tandem riding ever since!
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Old 03-15-11, 05:37 PM   #8
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timthorn,
We were in the same position last fall as you appear now. We were interested in a tandem and there were few dealers or bikes around us. In doing research I found in the Santana site a description of the intro program they have available to their dealers and what it involves. To make a long story short we drove 168 miles each way to visit what appeared to be a real tandem dealer. It turned out to be a small business operated by someone who was very knowledgeable about tandems and had ridden tandems for 20 years with his wife. He had models from several different manufacturers. While he briefly explained the differences, once he knew we had never been on one his goal was to get us on several and riding them. He spent a lot of time starting with simple things like how do you get on one and get it going, which is different from the procedure for a solo. After that he talked about the differences again and as long as we were comfortable with them he wanted us to take as many as we wanted for longer rides. Finding that kind of dealer (which isn’t hard among real tandem dealers) will help get you started. We bought one last fall and have enjoyed it every time we have been able to get out on it and are planning to spend more time now that spring has arrived around here.

PS While we were investigating tandems, I used the pictures of happy tandem couples on this forum for inspiration.
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Old 03-15-11, 07:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wheelspeed View Post
Ahhh, you never forget your first one.
Our first was a Schwinn Twin. It started life as a coaster brake bike and was given to me by a woman who was moving and didn't want it anymore. It had been left out in the weather and all of the components were badly rusted. I found a fellow who had converted a 5-speed Schwinn Twin to all alloy components and sold me his cast offs, including both wheels, for $30.00.

I think that Mrs. Grouch and I rode that bike for 8 years including some pretty challenging rides. One was a hilly overnight in which Susan Notreangelo and Lon Haldeman also rode a tandem. Susan sought us out at the overnight and congratulated us for making the ride with such a heavy bike.
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Old 03-17-11, 02:01 AM   #10
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Thanks for the tips about Family Cycles. They are right down the road from an appointment of mine today, so we will swing by there.

Precision Tandems are off this week due to spring break,but they are running their March sales. We will try to check them out next week. I know their expertise will be very valuable. We had some college kid try to set up my wife and I on at 17"/15" setup, and we both require 21" min.
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