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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 04-08-11, 05:56 AM   #1
DubT
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New Pearl White Calfee Tandem is ordered!

We placed the order for our new small/small Calfee frame about 2 weeks ago, the Ready To Ship date is June 3rd. I can hardly wait.

We are currently riding a 1989 Santana Visa that we bought from our neighbors last July and have become avid tandem riders, we had a Santana Targa several years ago but ended up selling it because of a family tragedy. Rode motorcycles for a few years and decided to see if we still liked to tandem, found out we do, hence the new bike. BTW the motorcycle has been sold, a Honda Goldwing trike.

I have nearly all of the parts purchased for the build when the frame arrives.

Here is my list:

The frame will include the Bushnell eccentric
Bontrager Tandem Wheels - purchased a new set from Mel at Tandems East
FSA Gossamer front crank
FSA SLK carbon rear crank
Enve Carbon fork
Chris King headset
Thomson Elite X2 stems - front and rear
Thomson Elite seatposts - front and rear
Zipp Carbon front handlebars
Profile Design T2 Wing rear handlebars
Specialized Toupe Pro front saddle
Bontrager ladies rear saddle
Sampson Stratics front pedals
Shimano M520 rear pedals
Shimano 6703 shifters
Dura Ace front derailleur
Dura Ace long cage rear derailleur
Ultegra brakes front and rear with Kool Stop Salmon pads
11-28 Ultegra cassette, i wanted a 12-27 but they no longer offer it
Wippermann chains
Bontrager 700 X 23 tires, they are actually the time trial version that I am going to use because they were sitting around gathering dust. I plan to order a set of Veloflex Corsa tires in the next couple of days. I am actually using this tire and the new front Bontrager wheel on our old tandem right now and it feels great.
N-Gear jump stop
Performance handlebar tape
Jagwire stainless brake and shift cables
Ultegra housing

I think that pretty well covers it, the finished product should come in right at 30-31 pounds.

Wayne
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Old 04-08-11, 06:44 AM   #2
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Gotta ask just out of curiosity....

Quote:
FSA Gossamer front crank
FSA SLK carbon rear crank
Why a hybrid set of cranks? Just what you had on hand or could find in the correct lengths?

Quote:
Enve Carbon fork
Why ENVE vs. a Co-Motion Elite or Wound-Up?
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Old 04-08-11, 06:59 AM   #3
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Gotta ask just out of curiosity....



Why a hybrid set of cranks? Just what you had on hand or could find in the correct lengths?

Price! The rear was $125 and the front was $123.



Why ENVE vs. a Co-Motion Elite or Wound-Up?
I forget, I think that was what Michael (at Calfee) suggested.
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Old 04-08-11, 07:37 AM   #4
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I forget, I think that was what Michael (at Calfee) suggested.
Hmmmm.
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Old 04-08-11, 08:43 AM   #5
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Hmmmm.
Mark,

I appreciate your input. What are your thoughts concerning forks. BTW, your Calfee journal is the main reason that we ordered the Calfee.
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Old 04-08-11, 09:16 AM   #6
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What are your thoughts concerning forks. BTW, your Calfee journal is the main reason that we ordered the Calfee.
On the surface, there doesn't appear to be a much difference... particularly for a Calfee that was designed around a shorter, single road bike-length fork where both forks have the same rake.

The ENVE is $500 from Calfee ($581.95 msrp), 350 grams and 367mm long (crown to fork), with more than enough clearance for 25mm or perhaps even 28mm tires (assuming your rear triangle was spec'd for 28mm)

The Co-Motion is $475 from Calfee ($475 msrp), 385 grams and 374mm long (crown to fork) with enough clearance for up to a 28mm tire.

ENVE purportedly met or exceeded True Temper / Alpha Q's X2 tandem fork benchmarks for strength and durability when they were being evaluated a while back. The Co-Motion Elite fork was designed to meet and exceed those same standards. Therefore, that's essentially a wash assuming all other things in terms of product support, repeatable processes / consistent quality, etc. are equal.

That being the case and also assuming the 7mm lower fork crown height is a wash on the geometry, handling, pedal clearance, Calfee has always recommended the lighter-weight option... and ENVE wins on gram count.

I have no idea what, if any difference there may be on the margin they make on an ENVE vs. a Co-Motion, although I suspect they get a pretty good deal on ENVE as that appears to have replaced the True Temper Alpha Q line of carbon forks as that's their standard offering across their product line.

I should have asked for a commission on Calfee tandem sales!!

Seriously though, I appreciate the feedback and I hope you find it guided you to a decision you will still find to be a good decision for many years to come. We're still EXTREMELY pleased with our Calfee, given all the reasons we elected to buy a Calfee as outlined in our Journal. Although, I do need to do an epiloge... perhaps this weekend if it rains.

Last edited by TandemGeek; 04-08-11 at 09:47 AM. Reason: Too many long sentences / high FOG factor.
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Old 04-08-11, 09:44 AM   #7
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We bought our Calfee a little over a year ago and it exceeded all of our expectations.
Our previous tandem was a Santana Sovereign and the Calfee rides much smoother and is 6 lbs lighter. BTW I think you can get 12-27 cassette in a 105 model. I bought one a few years ago and I couldn't really tell any difference between the 105 and Ultegra. Our tandem does have the 11-28 and I think the wider gearing is better on a tandem.
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Old 04-08-11, 10:22 AM   #8
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We bought our Calfee a little over a year ago and it exceeded all of our expectations.
Our previous tandem was a Santana Sovereign and the Calfee rides much smoother and is 6 lbs lighter. BTW I think you can get 12-27 cassette in a 105 model. I bought one a few years ago and I couldn't really tell any difference between the 105 and Ultegra. Our tandem does have the 11-28 and I think the wider gearing is better on a tandem.
Your old posts on your build and Mark's comments about the stock Calfee eccentric helped me make up my mind to go with the Bushnell eccentric. Thank You! I believe the Bushnell will prove to be a better eccentric over the long run. Wayne
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Old 04-08-11, 10:59 AM   #9
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We have an ENVE fork on our new Paketa V2r. IMO, you made the right choice. It's a very nice fork both in performance and craftsmanship.

Sounds like a really nice build! I'm sure you'll love it.

Rick
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Old 04-08-11, 01:19 PM   #10
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If you think you can beat Calfee's price, they will install a customer supplied fork if it's meets their dimensional checks.

We ended up supplying the fork for my wife's Calfee because it was no longer available from the OEM and Calfee would not buy the fork from other sources.
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Old 04-08-11, 01:28 PM   #11
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[Captain:] Zipp Carbon front handlebars
[Stoker:] Profile Design T2 Wing [aluminum] rear handlebars
So, the captain gets the more expensive buzz-dampening carbon bar, while the stoker gets the less expensive aluminum bar?







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Old 04-08-11, 02:35 PM   #12
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Don't think you get vibration/buzz through the stokers bars anyway.
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Old 04-08-11, 02:57 PM   #13
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Haha nice catch there Ritterview!

...but I don't really think the stoker is being short changed.

FWIW: I will probably never run a carbon bar, as long as they still make good aluminum ones.

I put a little fizik bargel under the tape, which probably makes more difference for buzz-dampening than a carbon bar.

My Deda bar weight is in the same ballpark as most carbon bars, it's very solid, and well of course it's cheaper.
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Old 04-08-11, 03:01 PM   #14
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So, the captain gets the more expensive buzz-dampening carbon bar, while the stoker gets the less expensive aluminum bar?







They were almost the same price, I found the Zipp bars on closeout at Excel Boulder Sports.

She saw the Profile bars at the Performance shop in Indianapolis and liked them, she gets whatever she wants! LOL
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Old 04-08-11, 11:09 PM   #15
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When we were test riding a Calfee at Tandems East, it was set up with a Profile Carbon Cobra Wing bar for the stoker - after our ride, Stoker Karen said that this bar was going on our bike. She gets whatever she wants too, so I had to get the Cobra Drop Bar to match.
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Old 04-09-11, 12:25 AM   #16
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So it is going to be solid pearl white? Is there going to be a secondary color? Does Calfee now offer multi-color schemes? They did hire a graphic designer (at my insistence, btw) who came up with schemes for them.

A neat thing to do is to send your components such as stems, bars, seatposts and fork to be painted along with the frame. It makes for a much more integrated look.
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Old 04-09-11, 02:35 PM   #17
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So it is going to be solid pearl white? Is there going to be a secondary color? Does Calfee now offer multi-color schemes? They did hire a graphic designer (at my insistence, btw) who came up with schemes for them.

A neat thing to do is to send your components such as stems, bars, seatposts and fork to be painted along with the frame. It makes for a much more integrated look.
Almost all of the accessories are black, stems, seatposts etc. So pearl white and black, that is what she wants. We both like that look, our last motorcycle was white and black, both of our cars are white. We kind of like white.

If a stem is painted and I need to change it I do not want to send it someplace to have it painted.

Wayne
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Old 04-11-11, 12:27 PM   #18
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You might check the vertical reach of the n gear jump stop. the Calfee BB area is quite thick and tapered near the chain rings. We have installed the K edge and it works great. Mike at Calfee sent me one the carbon spacers and it is mounted with the clamp on K edge. I think some sort of protection is important as we had to send our frame back for repair after the chain jumped and wedged badly. Calfee was suposedly working with Joe at K Edge to start offering this on all of the tandems.
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Old 04-11-11, 02:17 PM   #19
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You might check the vertical reach of the n gear jump stop. the Calfee BB area is quite thick and tapered near the chain rings. We have installed the K edge and it works great. Mike at Calfee sent me one the carbon spacers and it is mounted with the clamp on K edge. I think some sort of protection is important as we had to send our frame back for repair after the chain jumped and wedged badly. Calfee was suposedly working with Joe at K Edge to start offering this on all of the tandems.
So far the n gear jump stop has worked well for our Calfee. Chainring sizes are 54/44/28. Most people don't run below 28 for Granny. Very well worth about $13.
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Old 04-11-11, 02:48 PM   #20
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Specialized Toupe Pro front saddle.
I have the Toupe on both my tandem and road bike. It is a reasonably comfortable weight weenie saddle. It isn't nearly as comfortable on a long ride as the Fizik Aliante Carbon I had before.

If you are looking to save weight, the saddle should be one of the last places to shave.
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Old 04-11-11, 05:33 PM   #21
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I have received the Toupe Pro and found out that it has a 30 day satisfaction guarantee from date of purchase so I put it on our current tandem. So far I really like it and find it to be very comfortable. I am going to get another one for my Trek SC. I will haveto get the Toupe Expert because of the seat clamp on the Trek.
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Old 04-22-11, 09:55 AM   #22
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Well, the Toupe Pro is on it's way back to Specialized. It was good for about 10 miles and then my sits bones started shouting at me. If I lowered it enough to get rid of that discomfort then my knees started talking. I talked to Bob in the return department and he suggested the Toupe Comp Gel, it is the same shape, (which I like) but has a thin layer of gel padding. I will probably take his advice and try one. If that does not work I will go back to a Bontrager which is what I have been using and have put several thousand miles on. The only thing about the Bontrager is that I have to cut a relief in it by hand which does not look that great on a new high end tandem.
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Old 04-22-11, 07:04 PM   #23
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Well, the Toupe Pro is on it's way back to Specialized. It was good for about 10 miles and then my sits bones started shouting at me.
You heard it here first!

If you want to pick a saddle with the greatest chance of finding comfort, consider the Fizik Aliante. My authority on this is Competitive Cyclists. They are the big Internet supplier of high end road bikes, and the Aliante is their default saddle choice. CC has a keen interest in keeping saddle returns on their builds as few as possible, and they've found that the Aliante is the most comfortable for the most people. If you look at CC's shipped-bike Gallery, you'll see a lot of Aliante's.




There are several different models, of varying weight and prices. Fizik also features the handy ICS system, so as to have a readily detachable saddle bag (but that is of limited applicability to a captain's saddle).
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Old 04-23-11, 09:37 AM   #24
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+1 on the Aliante. Recently acquired a new tandem and these were on it. Have not been a Fizik fan in the past so started to pull them off and go with our tried and true ones but decided to give them a try anyway out of curiosity.... Much to our surprise, it was pretty comfortable for both of us ...longest ride to date has only been 5 hours but we both still have them on the bike...definitely worth consideration.

Bill J

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Old 04-23-11, 11:53 AM   #25
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Whatever saddle I get has to have the relief cut in it for the soft tissue area. I have been cutting reliefs in saddles for years and do not want to have a hand cut out saddle on the new bike. Just would not look right on a new high end tandem.
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