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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 03-29-14, 05:24 PM   #1
Big Lew
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how much weight?

I'm normally a solo tourer but am hoping this 'tandem forum' might be able to answer my question.
How much weight can most manage while touring? As an example, if your partner weighs approximately 130 lbs. and doesn't help you peddle, are you able to carry on in most situations? I have an 80 lb. dog that I would like to bring along, so with the trailer and my gear weight it will be about 130-135 lbs. I know it's best to just try it, but I don't have a trailer and don't want to buy one if it's not feasible. Thanks for any input.
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Old 03-29-14, 06:14 PM   #2
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If my partner weighed approximately 130 lbs. and didn't help pedal, I would be riding my single

Really though, 50-80lbs of gear is "typical" touring weight. 130lbs... is double trouble without a 2nd motor. Give yourself plenty of time and judge the distances accordingly.

Last edited by twocicle; 03-30-14 at 02:04 PM.
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Old 03-29-14, 07:53 PM   #3
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If there are any significant hills you better have some low gears, be patient, and be a pretty strong cyclist. It is also a lot of weight to push you around on the downhills, worse if you are light but I suspect you are not with a name like Big Lew.
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Old 03-29-14, 08:08 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Big Lew View Post
I'm normally a solo tourer but am hoping this 'tandem forum' might be able to answer my question.
How much weight can most manage while touring? As an example, if your partner weighs approximately 130 lbs. and doesn't help you peddle, are you able to carry on in most situations? I have an 80 lb. dog that I would like to bring along, so with the trailer and my gear weight it will be about 130-135 lbs. I know it's best to just try it, but I don't have a trailer and don't want to buy one if it's not feasible. Thanks for any input.
It may sound odd, but my first concern would be [from experience] will your dog stay in the trailer once you are moving??? When I was sighted and tried this, mine wouldn't. Loved to be in the trailer, but as soon as we moved he shot out like a scaulded cat.

Best suggestion, see if you can borrow a trailer and load it up with your expected dog/gear weight (sand bags, jugs of water, ect...) and see how you and your rig react...Then a short jaunt with just the dog to see how he handles the ride. Then make your decision on that purchase. Also watch as I don't think many trailers are designed for 80+ pounds
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Old 03-29-14, 11:59 PM   #5
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Several years ago I had a light homemade 2-wheeled trailer for use on logging roads etc. and it was designed to handle 125 lbs (a deer carcass) and it was pulled by an old 18 speed rigid framed mt. bike with very low gears. That was a different scenario though because I would detach it and walk it over rough stuff or up and down steep grades. I have quite strong cycling legs and I had no problem cycling with it loaded on smooth surfaces and shallow grades but that is not the same as ripping along the shoulder of a highway or cycling for most of many days. As for the dog jumping out, a light wire hinged cage should address that concern. I have ridden several 1000-1500 mi tours while carrying 50 lbs. but this proposed ride would be another 80 lbs on top of that.
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Old 03-30-14, 11:23 AM   #6
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The weight is not a big deal - you just need the gears to deal with the load, and adjust your expectations of how far you will go in a given amount of time. You may also want to have surge brakes on the trailer if you are going down any grades.
http://appropriatetechnology.wikispa...Braking+System
https://cycletote.com/shop/automatic-brake-system/

This trailer will handle your dog:
https://cycletote.com/trailers/dog-trailers/

A much larger concern for me is; will your dog stay relatively still? 80lbs moving around is going to be very noticeable.
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Old 03-30-14, 04:00 PM   #7
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If it doesn't pedal it does not belong on my tandem . . .
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Old 03-30-14, 05:49 PM   #8
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Our two cents: Less is more!
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Old 03-30-14, 08:42 PM   #9
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A few years ago I met a pair of brothers in front of my local Post Office. They were getting some ACA maps that they had mailed to themselves, which was their strategy for their entire cross-country trip for having just the maps they needed at the time. One of them had a trailer in which he pulled his ~60 pound dog. He did teach his dog to get out and walk next to the trailer on long, slow climbs. If you can manage that trick, then I'd say you can do it easily. If not, then you're going to be working a bit on the climbs.
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Old 03-31-14, 08:03 AM   #10
Big Lew
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A few years ago I met a pair of brothers in front of my local Post Office. They were getting some ACA maps that they had mailed to themselves, which was their strategy for their entire cross-country trip for having just the maps they needed at the time. One of them had a trailer in which he pulled his ~60 pound dog. He did teach his dog to get out and walk next to the trailer on long, slow climbs. If you can manage that trick, then I'd say you can do it easily. If not, then you're going to be working a bit on the climbs.
That is the plan, and I'm already making good progress having him on my right or in front as I cycle.
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Old 03-31-14, 09:44 AM   #11
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If it doesn't pedal it does not belong on my tandem . . .
+1

If the stoker doesn't pedal it is not a tandem but instead a pedicab



He's not pedaling!
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Old 03-31-14, 06:08 PM   #12
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My stoker thinks a pedicab is a silly idea!
R&J
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