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Bill Boston Tandem

Old 01-03-14, 10:24 AM
  #1  
seanmcnally
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Bill Boston Tandem

Hey everyone... I'm not a bike guy at all, but I was recently given a Bill Boston Tandem by a friend of mine. Not a lot of info out there that I can find (cool Sports Illustrated article from 1977) Best I can figure, it was probably built in the late 70's or early 80's? It's super clean (my buddy is a neat freak) Just wondering what I've got here. Thanks in advance. Here are a few pictures, althought I'm not really sure what I'm taking pictures of...
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Old 01-03-14, 10:59 AM
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I can't help you with any background, but that's quite a gift. Beautiful bike!
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Old 01-03-14, 11:32 AM
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What have you there is an incredible tandem made by one of the most under appreciated builders around; Bill Boston is one of the real pioneers in US frame building and he went on to give starts to guys like Redcay and Tom Kellogg. Those are some really big tubes for that period of time - he did fillet brazing to get around the lug issue. Larger diameter tubing is exactly what you want for tandems because they need to be stiff because of the lengths and torque involved. Very sensible, early disc brake on the rear and 48 spoke wheels. Those are extremely cool, influential and uncommon...this was a top end, well thought out build for the time. We need more photos of the drive side! I want to see the derailleurs.

Are you asking about what it's worth as far as riding it and owning it, or what it's worth on the market? You won't get many chances to own a tandem of this caliber by the way - one other forumite has one as well if I recall (4ring).
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Old 01-03-14, 02:23 PM
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seanmcnally
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here are a few more pics... down the rabbit hole on this one...
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Old 01-03-14, 02:50 PM
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Bill Boston is still around. He developed a fitting program called Accufit, which I use.

Contact info:

BILL BOSTON CYCLES
11 Deer Run Drive, Wilmington, DE 19807
Tel: 302-633-6150

info@billbostoncycles.com
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Old 01-03-14, 03:25 PM
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seanmcnally
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just dropped him an e-mail... thanks
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Old 01-03-14, 03:55 PM
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Very, very cool frame. Quite a mis-mash of parts, though. Huret RD, TA Crank, Suntour Cyclone FD, Shimano shifters and Campy headset! Doesn't get much more mixed than that! I would be tempted to go all Suntour on it. Keep the Cyclone FD, get a cyclone RD and some barcons. Maybe keep the Campy headset and TA crank, though.
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Old 01-03-14, 04:30 PM
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Mish mashes like that make sense for tandems...that's a Sachs Duopar, might be the ti model. I had one and wasn't wild about it, but it was a popular option for large range freewheels at the time. I'd probably swap the rear out, but leave the rest as is. Those were great tandem cranks at the time!

Really dig the Phil wood eccentric bbs...they're great.
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Old 01-10-14, 12:27 PM
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so, anybody got a rough ballpark of what this might be worth? I know that's totally dependent on a ton of variables, but are we talking 400 or 4000... I'm completely in the dark on this one.

thanks
-sean
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Old 01-10-14, 12:38 PM
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This thread might be of interest to you:

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...lt-Bill-Boston

Tandems are so hard to evaluate - selling or buying. You have to find one that fits two people, they're difficult to store, difficult to ship - the market is very limited. Tandems can sit at good prices because it's hard to find a buyer. Is it worth $150 to you? Is it worth $1000? Our tandems make me and my wife happy - they're worth a LOT to me. Are they worth a lot reselling? I don't know.

I would never buy a tandem as a flipper because of the difficulty in finding a buyer. If you have a partner to ride it with, and it fits, I think it's worth more to ride then it would sell for (tandem riding is a BLAST). This is a high quality tandem from a GREAT builder...if it fits, you're a lucky man.

If I wanted a tandem and this fit, I'd feel comfortable paying up to around $1,000 as a keeper (maybe a little more). If I wanted to sell it...I'd expect a little less. There's just so much luck when it comes to tandems. To buy a tandem of this quality new would cost $$$$.

Last edited by KonAaron Snake; 01-10-14 at 01:11 PM.
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Old 01-10-14, 03:46 PM
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
Really dig the Phil wood eccentric bbs...they're great.
+1 great design.
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Old 01-11-14, 10:37 PM
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The Phil brake is controversial at this point, no spare parts being made I think, Phil Wood I think advises retiring it, NOW. They were withdrawn from the market. That warning out, I think they would make a decent drag brake until they wear out, then you need to retrofit a complete modern disc, the bigger the rotor the better.

The bike looks terrific, you have a generous friend. Tandems as advised by KonAaron are a challenge to give a value to. The way this bike was assembled indicates to me it was a thoughtful custom spec at the time. This is one where you could offer it at $500 and it might sit, or it could find a buyer at $1,500. The Phil brake will be a plus to some and a big negative to others.
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Old 01-26-17, 09:58 PM
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a glorious bump!

just had to comment and say what a lovely bike this is. wow. and the racks!
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