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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 05-14-13, 09:27 PM   #1
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Communicating in silence on a tandem

My wife and I are going to do the ride of silence tomorrow on the tandem. She is a fairly inexperienced cyclist to begin with and neither of us is heavily experienced on the tandem. Up till now, we've been communicating verbally, especially to coordinate starting and stopping the bike. Any tips for how to communicate with no or minimal chatter?
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Old 05-14-13, 11:13 PM   #2
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Just don't talk. It'll be fun. Do everything exactly like you always do. We normally talk a little, but we don't have to. If you usually call out shifts, just shift earlier when it won't matter. "Up" might be a thing. Maybe just point up or tap her. Most teams don't have to call that.
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Old 05-15-13, 06:53 AM   #3
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Just use a hand signal for stopping/starting. As CFB says, you can pretty much shift without active stoker participation unless you've got a really strong stoker.
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Old 05-15-13, 10:50 AM   #4
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Ride of Silence is a slow paced ride so there should be nothing exciting happening to require communication. Starting and stopping requires no communication if she stays clipped in until the end of the ride. Does she put a foot down at every stop?
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Old 05-15-13, 11:33 AM   #5
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Does she put a foot down at every stop?
She tends to hop off at stops. Hand signals is what we were thinking. And she'll just have to pay careful attention to anticipate when I might stop or start off again. Thanks
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Old 05-16-13, 03:56 AM   #6
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How did it go?
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Old 05-16-13, 09:35 AM   #7
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How did it go?
The ride was abbreviated due to incoming bad weather. Instead of 9 miles on city streets, we all did a 1 mile loop around Trinity Park. The turnout was light compared to last year as well, so the riding was not nearly as tricky as I'd been planning for. We did fine and then ducked into a nearby restaurant to wait out the storm.

She has realized the difference between a low end bike and a better one now. The entry level diamondback tandem we are riding now fits her and is much safer since she can put a foot down, however she says it is much "bouncier" than the Trek T100, and she does not like that aspect. It also has shifters that are a fair amount sloppier than the Trek.
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