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Old 01-17-22, 12:28 PM
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galyons
the dream shall never die
 
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Lincoln, Sacramento North Valley, California
Posts: 149

Bikes: Cannondale RT3000 Tandem Cannondale R900 CAAD 8 Campy

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First tandem ride ever is now complete!

The Virgin ride on the tandem is complete. My heartfelt thanks to, no longer Virgin, nephew, Tim. (Who had never ridden a tandem either!) It was definitely a learning experience! I am 70 and broke my hip road cycling near Mt. Lassen in Northern California 4 years ago. I was medevaced 180 miles to the hospital. So still a bit paranoid with the thought of falling! For most of you, my comments will be “Duh! Yeah!” But this captures my initial experience!!

Riding the tandem is significantly different than riding a single bike. All my research drove home the point that “Anything that goes wrong is the Captain’s fault.” Our first 100 feet was an experience best left for nightmares. Nothing bad happened, but in those short few seconds, we imagined everything that could have gone wrong, and more! Learned Rule #1. Tandems are not at fun slow speeds! You do not feel stable and “safe” until you are 8-10mph, or more, especially on start up! Even the slightest movement by the stoker feels like you have an elephant dancing on the rear end. Tim, learned VERY QUICKLY!! Sit still or you will die!!

Pedaling? There is no avoiding teamwork! One chain, two cranksets! Turning, not Porsche, 18 wheeler!! Braking was great, after all of the loose bits from my refurb shifted and/or collapsed. Thankfully the multi-tool solved the problems. Communication is key to actually getting to complete the ride. Even Tim’s constant “Dear God, please don’t let me die!”!!

We rode 8.5 miles, (although it seemed like 50!), at an average speed of 16.5mph. So that was pretty much my normal 13.5mph, with Tim’s pathetic contribution of 3.0mph.

All joking aside, Tim was a trooper. I appreciate a 30 year old, babysitting his cranky old Uncle!! I could not have picked a better partner to venture out on my first ride on the tandem! We learned a lot! Every start was better! Every stop became smoother and more coordinated. I think riding the bike will be a real pleasure, but, just like a child learning to ride, you have to get past the “I’m going to die!”

Last edited by galyons; 01-17-22 at 03:20 PM.
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