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Old 03-11-13, 11:37 PM
Tandem Vincitur
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern California
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Bikes: BMC Pro Machine SLC01, Specialized Globe, Burley Rock 'N Roll tandem, Calfee Dragonfly tandem.

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Originally Posted by waynesulak View Post
I do differ from Ritterview reference to pro teams. Maybe because we are so much lower power but I tend to think that they ride what they are paid to ride, the newest stuff. I don't think an eleven speed gives the Campy teams an advantage over a 10 speed team.
Great, now waynesulak is after me. He differs.

Ah, I had anticipated the pros-ride-what-the-sponsor-wants retort. The pros also have the UCI 6.8 kg weight limit, so that a rider dispensing with all the FD shifting would gain no weight advantage. However, if you were to attend your local crit or road race, and see how completely amateur and unsponsored Cat 1 & 2's were geared with unweighed bikes, it would be the same as the pros. There isn't any road racing bike taking advantage of the weight savings of a single chainring, 11-36 cassette, and a dummy left shifter (try and find an example. It can be seen in cyclocross, and mt bikes, but not road). The range for single chainring 53 with 11-36 is essentially the same as 53-39 double with 11-25. But the Cat 1 would look at this and recoil at the size of the jumps.

Single chainring 53 + 11-36 top, and 53-39, 11-25 bottom.

So, the appeal to the authority of pro racers (and Cat 1's) stands. Jumps matter. If jumps matter for fast-accelerating watt/kg-endowed road racers, then they matter all the more for relatively lumbering tandems. Note that Formula One racing cars have seven speed transmissions , whereas semi-trailers have 18. More intertia wants more gearing.

Yes Di2 and EPS is the bee's knees, moreso on a tandem, and it is positively heaven for a travelling coupled tandem. But that is to conflate the electronic vs. mechanical and double vs. triple issues. Gotta keep them separated. Show me a crisp, reliable and rapid Di2 shift from the 32 to 28 cog, and I'll show you a large jump. Be Di2 ever so wonderful, it makes no sense for this 295 lb team to embrace the large jumps eschewed by wispy and watt-laden Cat 1's.

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