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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 02-18-12, 07:05 PM   #1
tly
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Primeria or Speedster

I'm about to pull the trigger on a new Co-Motion. There is about 2K difference between the two with the options that I want. I would like to hear from others that faced a similar decision and which way they went and why.

I'm a firm believer in buying the best that you can afford and I know that the Speedster comes with upgraded components so probably the main difference that we are looking at is the frame design difference. Correct me if I'm wrong.

So whatever knowledge and experience the group has to share would be greatly appreciated.

Oh yeah. We do mostly casual riding. No racing or anything like that. Street and also some rails to trails riding. Wil probably also do some light B&B touring as well.

Tom
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Old 02-19-12, 11:15 AM   #2
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Co-Motion's Open framed models were created for a couple reasons:

1. They cost less to make, which allows them to offer the bikes at a lower price point than a frame with an internal tube and their more expensive Reynolds 631 air-hardened steel tubesets, i.e., use of the Reynolds 725 heat treated double butted tubing + less material and labor when the internal tube is omitted.
2. They're quite suitable for most light to mid-weight teams & most types of riding by those teams

Obviously, the best way to evaluate the differences beyond aesthetics -- if there are any that you might be able to detect -- would be to ride examples of both bikes. Short of that, riding at least one of them would be better than no test ride at all.

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Old 02-19-12, 11:39 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tly View Post
I'm about to pull the trigger on a new Co-Motion. There is about 2K difference between the two with the options that I want. I would like to hear from others that faced a similar decision and which way they went and why.

I'm a firm believer in buying the best that you can afford and I know that the Speedster comes with upgraded components so probably the main difference that we are looking at is the frame design difference. Correct me if I'm wrong.

So whatever knowledge and experience the group has to share would be greatly appreciated.

Oh yeah. We do mostly casual riding. No racing or anything like that. Street and also some rails to trails riding. Wil probably also do some light B&B touring as well.

Tom
Please see private message.
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Old 02-19-12, 03:44 PM   #4
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Another question that you may want to take in consideration is whether you want S+S couplers on your bike. I am not sure if this has changed, but in the past Co-motion used the more fancy Reynolds 631 air-hardened steel tubesets only on non-coupled bikes. For bikes with couplers, the Reynolds 725 heat treated double butted tubing was used. Hence, a coupled Speedster would essentially be from the same material as a coupled Primera. Finally, with an open frame design you need only 4 couplers instead of 6 on a frame with the lateral tube - this means savings of 650$ or so in the price of the frameset. Primera is a great package for a good price that my reason would probably tend to choose over the Speedster. But then, hey, we need not (should not?) choose bikes with reason. So, if you can afford it, choose the bike that you simply like more.
We personnally went with a coupled Primera in 2009 (at that time it still had the lateral tube and Ultegra shifting). Since it was our first tandem, we were happy to save some $$, and perhaps get a more "speedy" bike like a Supremo or a carbon fibre Calfee after some years. As of now, after 3 years of riding the Primera we are very happy with our choice

Last edited by PeFSQ; 02-19-12 at 04:27 PM.
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Old 02-19-12, 05:37 PM   #5
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The Primera's components are less expensive than the Speedster. The 105 works well although it is a little heavier and does not have as nice of finish as the Ultegra. The big difference in components is the headset and hubs. The Primera's will work well but probably will not last as long as the Speedster's. I think that the Primera is limited on color without an up charge. Do you like the color choices on the Primera? Talk to your dealer and/or call Co-Motion. I have always found Co-Motion helpful. Enjoy your new tandem.
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Old 02-20-12, 06:42 AM   #6
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We have a 2006 Primera with Woundup fork, Bontrager tandem wheels with Conti 4000 tires, Biomorph carbon bars and champagne/lemon fade upgrades. As standard it has Shimano 105 9-speed, and FSA Gossamer triple. Weight with pedals is 37lb. We have been very happy with it and had no problems at all. We just bought a Macchiato, so the Primera has to go!
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Old 02-20-12, 07:41 AM   #7
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One point in favor of the Primera is that the money saved will be available for a possible upgrade later.

Wayne
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Old 02-20-12, 11:44 AM   #8
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I looked at the CoMotion tandems when we made our purchase as they are very popular with our club and are made close by in Oregon (We live in Washington). They are all impressive bikes. But before pulling the trigger on a new CoMotion I checked out the other most popular bikes such as the Rodriguez/Trillium and Cannondale. The R&E bikes are awesome but too expensive for us. What we finally bought was the Cannondale RT2 which is priced same as the Primera but has all Ultegra like the Speedster. S&S couplers are not important to us as we also have a Bike Friday for travelling, but if they are to you then stick with the CoMotion. Money aside, the Speedster is lighter, has disk brakes, and better components. Considering money the Primera is a reasonable deal.
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Old 02-20-12, 11:51 AM   #9
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Can you test ride both? We test rode a Primera, bought a Speedster.
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Old 02-20-12, 03:36 PM   #10
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My stoker and I ride a 2010 MY Speedster Co-Pilot. It is our first tandem and we love it. We wanted a great "all around" bike that would excel in many different scenarios. We are comfortable doing fast club rides with the Speedster. We also enjoy doing long rides and brevets. Future plans include fully loaded touring. The S&S couplers make it a breeze for travelling. We even haul it inside our Jeep Wrangler for trips where we are not comfortable having it on the bike rack outside the vehicle.

We spent months researching which tandem to buy. My research kept leading me back to the Speedster Co-Pilot. I have yet to read a negative review from someone who has actually owned and/or ridden a Speedster. The only negative reviews tend to come from folks who don't believe Steel is Real.

What actually took me over the top in taking a decision was the following text from the Tandem Cycle Works website.
"The Speedster Co-Pilot tandem is the bike that Lynn and Patrick, the owners of Tandem Cycle Works, ride. Without question, if we were not shop owners, and we could ride only one tandem, this would be it. On a Speedster Co-Pilot, the world is our oyster. Whether climbing the Stelvio in the Italian Alps, the Crown Range on New Zealand's South Island, or riding Alpe d'Huez at the Tour, the Speedster Co-Pilot has been our trusty steed.

At Tandem Cycle Works, this is our most popular bike, hands down. Many of our customers want to travel the world by tandem and the Speedster Co-Pilot fits the bill as the perfect touring tandem....."
Tandem Cycle Works of Colorado
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Old 02-20-12, 03:58 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bent In El Paso View Post
"The Speedster Co-Pilot tandem is the bike that Lynn and Patrick, the owners of Tandem Cycle Works, ride. Without question, if we were not shop owners, and we could ride only one tandem, this would be it. On a Speedster Co-Pilot, the world is our oyster. Whether climbing the Stelvio in the Italian Alps, the Crown Range on New Zealand's South Island, or riding Alpe d'Huez at the Tour, the Speedster Co-Pilot has been our trusty steed.
Hearty praise indeed, especially considering the last time I rode with Lynn and Patrick (many, many years ago), they were on a coupled Calfee.
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Old 02-24-12, 07:53 PM   #12
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Decision made

Thanks everyone for your advise. I pulled the trigger yesterday on a new speedster.

Co-Motion Speedster
****Size - Medium 0.00
****Custom Longer Headtube
****Finish - White Mica
****Decals - WBO
****Captain Bars - 42cm
****Cranks - 175 / 170
****Thudbuster
****Gates Belt Drive
****Brooks B-17 Imperial for Captain
****Continental Touring Plus Tire Substitution 700x32

BTW Mark with Precision Tandems www.precisiontandems.com has been great to work with. I recommend him highly.
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Old 02-25-12, 04:40 AM   #13
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Good for you. Enjoy your new tandem.
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Old 02-25-12, 11:59 AM   #14
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We enjoyed our speedster. A very good and very versatile bike.

Wayne
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Old 02-25-12, 01:30 PM   #15
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tly,
We also have a Speedster. I am interested on how you like the Brooks saddle.
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Old 02-25-12, 06:56 PM   #16
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My wife and I both ride on Brook's saddles on our Speedster and love them.
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Old 02-26-12, 07:56 AM   #17
tly
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Brooks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tandem Tom View Post
tly,
We also have a Speedster. I am interested on how you like the Brooks saddle.
I fell in love
with the Brooks several years ago on my touring bike. Since then every bike has Brooks. Can't convince stoker to try one yet. She thinks with no padding it CAN'T be comfortable.
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Old 02-26-12, 11:24 AM   #18
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Are you using the B17?
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Old 02-26-12, 04:36 PM   #19
Bent In El Paso
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I use the B17. My stoker uses the B68.
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Old 02-26-12, 07:03 PM   #20
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Had to make the same decition a few months ago. We had to have our frame custom sized for a number of reasons. We ended up going with the primera and using the money saved to upgrade components. Can't say enough good things about co-motion.
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Old 02-27-12, 12:43 AM   #21
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You won't regret your decision, the Speedster is a great bike, and it sounds like you've equipped it well. Enjoy!
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Old 04-04-12, 07:24 PM   #22
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Congratulations on your purchase. We bought our Speedster back in '04 and have never regretted the purchase. IMHO, it's probably the best bang for the buck on the market. The Speedster is also one of the more agile tandems out there. One of the changes we have made was a Brooks B-17 (aged) saddle for my stoker. She speaks VERY HIGHLY of her Brooks.
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Old 04-05-12, 07:42 AM   #23
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We have an older Speedster Co-Pilot that is our first (and only) tandem. We haven't ridden anything to compare it to. It isn't light. With couplers I think it is about 42 pounds. We've enjoyed the bike and have travelled with it several times. Before we bought the bike we rented an uncoupled bike and flew to Canada with it. That is what sold us on the couplers. Unless somebody has figured out a routine to fly with an uncoupled bike, it can be a real hassle (and expensive).

Hope you enjoy your new bike.
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