Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Tandem Cycling
Reload this Page >

Captian & Stoker Communication..... newbie questions?

Notices
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!

Captian & Stoker Communication..... newbie questions?

Old 05-30-05, 06:49 PM
  #1  
mtbcyclist
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
mtbcyclist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Captian & Stoker Communication..... newbie questions?

As the day draws near for the pick up of my new tandem I have often pondered about a few things about communication...

1. How do you all communicate when one wants to stand such as in a hill climb or a sprint?

2. How about riding in a pack? Drafting somebody is often very sensitive the the amount (and force) of your pedal strokes? How does your stoker know when and when not too pedal so you don't end up in the rear of the person you are drafting?

Ok sounds like dumb questions but in 15 years of road riding I have never had the joy of tandeming. Any other things (or tips) you tandem gurus could provide would be appreciated.
mtbcyclist is offline  
Old 05-30-05, 07:57 PM
  #2  
zonatandem
Senior Member
 
zonatandem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 11,016

Bikes: Custom Zona c/f tandem + Scott Plasma single

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 19 Times in 11 Posts
As in all things with tandem riding, communication is the key.
Come up with a key word that indicates what you are going to do.
If you have not ridden tandem it may take a bit of practice to do this. Whatever you plan to do on the tandem you indicate by voicing it out loud so stoker is aware.
From: 'coasting' to 'pedal' to 'shifting front/rear)', 'braking' etc. Do not forget to call out 'bump' as stoker certainly can't see that coming up.
As for standing, seeing that you are new to tandems, suggest riding the tandem solo before exposing stoker to your tandem handling skills. Yes, try riding solo and standing by yourself on the tandem first . . . notice the bit of tandem sway back there? On a tandem you do not throw your body around as most riders do on a solo . . . your stoker won't like that!
Rather keep upper body upright. After you listen to your stoker's input, have her stand while you stay seated. Ah, a bit different than you thought! Now it is the turn of the captain to stand while stoker stays seated.
Only after U-2 are comfortable doing the solo standing bit do you attempt to stand together.
A command that can be used would be: 'captain standing' or 'stoker standing' or if you both plan to stand 'team standing'.
When planning to slow down or turn, voice out loud "left/right turn,' 'slowing.' You, the captain keep both hands on the bars, the stoker will do the proper signaling.
When at a traffic light/stop sign, stoker stays seated/clipped in while captain holds brakes and puts either one or both feet down.
Riding in pack with singles can be problematic; with a bunch of other tandems it is less of an issue as they understand what a tandem can do. You will likely spend more time at or near the front of pack with singles as they all want your draft. That also gives you more maneuvering space. In the middle of a pack, ride with 'elbows out' as singles will crowd you and not give you adequate space especially in turns. Likely you will not both be standing in the middle of a pack of singles.
Hope this is of some help. Enjoy!

Pedal on TWOgether!
Rudy and Kay/zonatandem
zonatandem is offline  
Old 05-30-05, 08:34 PM
  #3  
TandemGeek
hors category
 
TandemGeek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 7,231
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by mtbcyclist
As the day draws near for the pick up of my new tandem I have often pondered about a few things about communication...

A pretty good thread on pacelines:
https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...light=standing

Another on standing:
https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...light=standing
TandemGeek is offline  
Old 05-31-05, 08:57 AM
  #4  
NewbieIATandem
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Iowa, USA
Posts: 179

Bikes: Trek T900

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mtbcyclist
1. How do you all communicate when one wants to stand such as in a hill climb or a sprint?
As a piggy back to this post...

We haven't seen a list of basic commands that the captain can call out to the stoker. For instance does the captain have to say "upshifting / downshifting" or is "shifting" sufficient? Is there a cadence to when you call "coasting" to give the stoker time to hear and coast, like "Coast - 2 - 3"?

We have a whopping 26 miles under our tandem belts and in that time have concluded that we love to tandem, but that we don't know squat about it. I know over time that there will be a sense between the two of us as to what works, but if there are some generally accepted "pseudo standards" for how to call things out, we would love to move up the learning curve a bit quicker.

Thank you in advance for any and all help.
NewbieIATandem is offline  
Old 05-31-05, 10:01 AM
  #5  
slagjumper
Senior Member
 
slagjumper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Down on East End Avenue.
Posts: 1,816

Bikes: Salsa Las Cruces, Burley R&R and a boat load of others.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
As the Captain, I always presume that I am the responsible party if we fall over when stopping. It doesn't happen often but when it does, it cannot ever be the stokers fault.

2004 Burley Rock and Roll.
slagjumper is offline  
Old 05-31-05, 10:25 AM
  #6  
Retro Grouch 
Senior Member
 
Retro Grouch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: St Peters, Missouri
Posts: 30,225

Bikes: Catrike 559 I own some others but they don't get ridden very much.

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1570 Post(s)
Liked 637 Times in 358 Posts
Originally Posted by mtbcyclist
As the day draws near for the pick up of my new tandem I have often pondered about a few things about communication...
1. How do you all communicate when one wants to stand such as in a hill climb or a sprint?
2. How about riding in a pack? Drafting somebody is often very sensitive the the amount (and force) of your pedal strokes? How does your stoker know when and when not too pedal so you don't end up in the rear of the person you are drafting?

We've got almost 29 years of tandeming and we've been married for almost 42 years. During that time my wife has become intuitive enough that it isn't necessary for us to use a lot of "commands".

1. Standing for hills and sprints isn't an issue. We simply don't do that. My advice is to make sure that you've got lots of space in every direction when you try it for the first time.

2. Riding in a pack with single bikes is hard. The rhythm is just different. It's harder to accellerate, like out of a corner and, when you coast, you coast faster and longer than single bikes so you tend to run up on their back wheel. Once you lose your momentum on uphills that tandem turns into a log truck.

3. Announce every "bump"! This can be a seriously big deal. On a single bike most riders unconsciously unweight their saddle just before hitting a bump. The stoker on a tandem can't see them coming and otherwise takes the full impact on her tushie.

4. On curvy downhills, fast turns and the like, my wife says that she just tries to keep centered between my shoulder blades.

5. We both always put our left feet down whenever we stop. That's contrary to the way that most tandem teams do it but, after 29 years, we're not about to change.

6. We always start exactly the same way. I get on, clip in my right foot, and position the pedal at 2:00. She gets on and tells me when her right foot is clipped in. We both push off with our left legs, pedal a couple of strokes to gain some momentum, and coast while we clip our left feet in. She tells me when she's in and off we go.

Other than that, we just ride.
Retro Grouch is offline  
Old 05-31-05, 11:39 AM
  #7  
landstander
darling no baka
 
landstander's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: I come from a place where the nuts hunt the squirrels
Posts: 437

Bikes: Bike Friday New World Tourist, 2005 Trek 520, 2005 Raleigh Companion

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by slagjumper
As the Captain, I always presume that I am the responsible party if we fall over when stopping. It doesn't happen often but when it does, it cannot ever be the stokers fault.
The Captain goes down with the Bike! (sorry, couldn't resist )
__________________
Dragon... ATTACK!
landstander is offline  
Old 05-31-05, 01:12 PM
  #8  
galen_52657
Banned.
 
galen_52657's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Towson, MD
Posts: 4,020

Bikes: 2001 Look KG 241, 1989 Specialized Stump Jumper Comp, 1986 Gatane Performanc

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Communication is a two-way street. I warn her when I am going to double shift, stand or coast. She kvetches when advised to stand or asked to contribute a little extra to get over a small rise....
galen_52657 is offline  
Old 05-31-05, 03:15 PM
  #9  
DocF
Older Than Dirt
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Reidsville, NC
Posts: 376
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The key is to tell the stoker what the captain intends to do. Most important is to warn of bumps. Also, the captain must listen to what the stoker says as the stoker has little or no control. (On our tandem, she can ding her little bell--we both have one--and that's about all.) After each ride, my wife and I go over things that did not go as we had anticipated and that seems to make it easier to communicate.

Doc
DocF is offline  
Old 05-31-05, 05:14 PM
  #10  
zonatandem
Senior Member
 
zonatandem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 11,016

Bikes: Custom Zona c/f tandem + Scott Plasma single

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 19 Times in 11 Posts
Sounds like U-2 are getting lots of good advice!
None of these commands are written in stone, so you can make them up between the two of you.
Also when shifting the rear derailleur, stoker should let up just a bit on pedal presssure to facilitate the shift.
Another tip: when stopping and dismounting from the tandem, the pilot stops & holds bike and both brake levers; then the stoker unclips and dismounts and walks away from the bike, voicing "off." That way she does not get a karate kick when captain throws leg over saddle, as he dismounts.
A second after giving most commands, stoker can react to them. It all gets better with practice; the longer your ride together the better it gets.
Welcome to the tandemworld!

Pedal on TWOgether!
Rudy and Kay/zonatandem
zonatandem is offline  
Old 06-01-05, 10:56 AM
  #11  
mtbcyclist
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
mtbcyclist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Wow a buttload of info here. Thanks folks. So much info here I am going to have to delete some info in my hard drive (aka da brain) to remember this stuff. Ask an ye shall recieve.

Now if I could only get my Burley I ordered. Maybe the tandem fairy will show up this weekend with my new ride.
mtbcyclist is offline  
Old 06-01-05, 12:22 PM
  #12  
stapfam
Time for a change.
 
stapfam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: 6 miles inland from the coast of Sussex, in the South East of England
Posts: 19,913

Bikes: Dale MT2000. Bianchi FS920 Kona Explosif. Giant TCR C. Boreas Ignis. Pinarello Fp Uno.

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by mtbcyclist
As the day draws near for the pick up of my new tandem I have often pondered about a few things about communication...

1. How do you all communicate when one wants to stand such as in a hill climb or a sprint?

2. How about riding in a pack? Drafting somebody is often very sensitive the the amount (and force) of your pedal strokes? How does your stoker know when and when not too pedal so you don't end up in the rear of the person you are drafting?

Ok sounds like dumb questions but in 15 years of road riding I have never had the joy of tandeming. Any other things (or tips) you tandem gurus could provide would be appreciated.
I would second everything that retro grouch has put in his reply, In fact he must have been my mentor and trained me in everything I have had to learn about the tandem. You will learn your methods, and they may be the same as Retro's, but Find your own method that works.

That riding in a pack is not a problem. Other than uphill where most tandems will struggle, you keep your pace and make the solos struggle. You don't have to worry about the tightness of the pack either as any other bike side swiping you bounces off very easily. They soon learn to respect you .

The whole art of Tandem riding is communication. Or at least initially. Tell the stoker to coast, when you are braking, changing gear and in fact anything you are going to do-tell the stoker. Likewise with the stoker. They will affect the steering with any movement they make so Communication goes both ways. Eventually you get as a team, and the stoker can feel what the pilot is about to do without thinking. The only communication between me and my pilot is minimal now. it is along the lines of "Groping for the water bottle", "You have lost the solo's-Again" and "You have just missed the turning -Again".

The only other thing I can suggest is think about the stoker.He/She will have a different cadence to you, have different energy levels, and different fitness. Let the stoker set the pace and when to change gear. This may be difficult for you initially, but gradually you will start to come to a compromise, and it will work. Cadence will become natural for both of you, gear changes will come at the right time, and those hills will not become any easier, but they will become shorter.
stapfam is offline  
Old 06-14-05, 03:01 PM
  #13  
Maury Cohen
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Sonoma County, CA
Posts: 27
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Many good suggestions already.
All We can add is...

I never expect immediate response on standing or sprinting. I try to give plenty of warning, then a "1,2...3 go!" I think a tandem sprint is better accomplished if strategically planned. We pulled of a city-limit sign win recently by coming around the singles at speed unexpectedly than staying on it for long enough to pull off the jump.

Pack riding: Like others already said... It's harder on a tandem with singles. We usually just set our own pace and let them follow. If you're fortunate to hook up with other tandems at a century type event you can paceline with other tandems. This is a GREAT experience.

Remember, tandeming should be about having fun, so catch yourself if things get "heavy".
Maury Cohen is offline  
Old 06-15-05, 09:07 AM
  #14  
Nachoman
well hello there
 
Nachoman's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Point Loma, CA
Posts: 15,373

Bikes: Bill Holland (Road-Ti), Fuji Roubaix Pro (back-up), Bike Friday (folder), Co-Motion (tandem) & Trek 750 (hybrid)

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 491 Post(s)
Liked 280 Times in 176 Posts
I only use two commands with my stokers. "Bump" and "stand". "Bump" as a courtesy to the stoker, and "stand" when I need to squeeze a little extra power out of stoker to climb a hill, catch another, or just speed away.
__________________
.
.

Two wheels good. Four wheels bad.
Nachoman is offline  
Old 06-16-05, 06:11 PM
  #15  
Alan Brill
Brilly
 
Alan Brill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 1

Bikes: Hybrid Tandem, Hybrid Tourer

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Something I wasn't aware of as Captain, is the Stoker (wife) cannot see anything up front.
So when we climb hills, she has no idea of the incline or distance to the top.
We developed a number system to help..... 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 are the gradients of incline with a short duration, and 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 are the same inclines with longer duration. So when I call out "10" we are getting into some pretty serious country.

It also helps to give a call of "halfway" or "three quarters" to boost her enthusiasm.

See y'on the streets
Brilly
Alan Brill is offline  
Old 06-16-05, 07:02 PM
  #16  
TandemGeek
hors category
 
TandemGeek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 7,231
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by Alan Brill
It also helps to give a call of "halfway" or "three quarters" to boost her enthusiasm.
So, what do you say when you're riding a new route where you think you're almost to the top of a long steep climb with a turn near the top and, as you enter the turn, discover it's a false summit?
TandemGeek is offline  
Old 06-16-05, 07:44 PM
  #17  
zonatandem
Senior Member
 
zonatandem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 11,016

Bikes: Custom Zona c/f tandem + Scott Plasma single

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 19 Times in 11 Posts
. . . say "Repeat" or "Replay"????
zonatandem is offline  
Old 06-17-05, 09:36 AM
  #18  
malkin
Let's ride to the pub!
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 193
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Say "Dammit!"
malkin is offline  
Old 06-17-05, 09:50 AM
  #19  
galen_52657
Banned.
 
galen_52657's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Towson, MD
Posts: 4,020

Bikes: 2001 Look KG 241, 1989 Specialized Stump Jumper Comp, 1986 Gatane Performanc

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by TandemGeek
So, what do you say when you're riding a new route where you think you're almost to the top of a long steep climb with a turn near the top and, as you enter the turn, discover it's a false summit?

You might say...'sorry baby... we can use first gear on the next one'....

Or, 'why didn't you tell me this hill was longer? didn't you check the map????'
galen_52657 is offline  
Old 06-17-05, 10:04 AM
  #20  
Murrays
Mad Town Biker
 
Murrays's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 974
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by TandemGeek
So, what do you say when you're riding a new route where you think you're almost to the top of a long steep climb with a turn near the top and, as you enter the turn, discover it's a false summit?
Many years ago, I dubbed that a QVC (the consumer sales network) hill as in "Put away that checkbook, there's more!"

-murray
Murrays is offline  
Old 04-13-08, 06:33 AM
  #21  
wahoonc
Membership Not Required
 
wahoonc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: On the road-USA
Posts: 16,855

Bikes: Giant Excursion, Raleigh Sports, Raleigh R.S.W. Compact, Motobecane? and about 20 more! OMG

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 70 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 10 Times in 9 Posts
Sorry to dredge this thread up from the depths

But we are a brand new tandem team, got a bit of advice from a more experienced team yesterday..."the captain needs to watch his emotions"

True story: Bob (the captain) and Ivan(blind stoker, Iraq vet) were on a long, multi stage charity ride and doing the late night stint. Rolled at 0200 for an 80 mile leg, 40 degrees and damp. Cap'n Bob forgot to start the GPS when they rolled out, after 8 miles of climbing and a couple of hairy downhills they come into a small town where under the streetlights he discovers the mistake...leading to a single obscene word outburst. Poor Ivan was ready to grab Bob in a bear hug and meet his maker... BTW we have at least 4-5 of these teams in our area and unfortunately the number is increasing But kudos to the captains for giving their time and all to these guys.

Aaron
__________________
Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

"Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
_Nicodemus

"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
_krazygluon
wahoonc is offline  
Old 04-13-08, 07:54 AM
  #22  
s2cycle
Member
 
s2cycle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Seattle
Posts: 36

Bikes: daVinci tandem

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Since you dredged it up and I'm new here I'd like to add a couple of thoughts. It seems it's nearly all captains here, so this is from a stoker perspective. If you haven't already heard the adage "the stoker is always right" it's a good one to be aware of. Calling out "bump" is not just a niceity it's a necessity. Remember, we're sitting on the back wheel so we feel it more AND we don't know it's coming. So, as someone else pointed out, the earlier you can call it the better. Half the time I don't get it in time to act. In fact we've changed the warning from "bump" to "up" as it's quicker and clearer. Because my husband is somewhat hearing impaired (wears aids off bike but can't on bike due to wind noise and perspiration) he finds that verbs are clearer than nouns (up vs bump).

The other vital communications tool in our kit is a tandem talk. There may be other threads about this but I didn't see any mention in this thread. There are two brands, https://tandem-talk.com/ and https://www.precisiontandems.com/tandemcomquestions.htm. There are pros and cons to both. For us, we're completely lost without such a system. But even without the hearing loss, this device makes it so you can talk at a comfortable conversational level despite wind and/or traffic noise.

Sheila
https://www.s2cycle.com
s2cycle is offline  
Old 04-13-08, 09:05 AM
  #23  
wahoonc
Membership Not Required
 
wahoonc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: On the road-USA
Posts: 16,855

Bikes: Giant Excursion, Raleigh Sports, Raleigh R.S.W. Compact, Motobecane? and about 20 more! OMG

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 70 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 10 Times in 9 Posts
Sheila,
Thanks for those links...we are nowhere near the stage to need those...yet. I am also hearing impaired, probably should wear the aids but don't We have literally just started the tandeming as a way to broaden my wife's (stoker) ride lengths. I have cycled at may levels over the years and currently ride at a medium recreational level. Pub crawls and day long rambles are about all that interest me anymore. FWIW we have an early 200? Raleigh Companion as our starter bike. We also have the extreme height disparity to deal with 6'-2" cap'n and a 5'-0.125" stoker Right now the goal is to just tool around town a bit, maybe do the local R-T until we get a bit more comfortable as a team and build her strength up.

Aaron
__________________
Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

"Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
_Nicodemus

"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
_krazygluon
wahoonc is offline  
Old 04-13-08, 07:00 PM
  #24  
TandemGeek
hors category
 
TandemGeek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 7,231
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by s2cycle View Post
If you haven't already heard the adage "the stoker is always right" it's a good one to be aware of.
This is a myth, nay a falsehood perpetuated by stokers who are often times wrong. However, it has been observed by one Bill McCready that when it comes to riding tandems, regardless of what happens on a tandem "The Stoker Makes No Mistakes"...

For those who have merely relied upon word of mouth and urban legend, here is what would appear at SNOPES if anyone other than a few tandeming enthusiasts gave a hoot...

Bill's Primary Rule of Tandeming settles this and most related
questions. It's very simple. Only five words to remember. Use it to
settle all tandem disputes. Are you ready? The next line you read is
Bill's Primary Rule of Tandeming:

The Stoker makes no mistakes.

From this primary rule virtually all other points of tandem
etiquette can be derived.

Actually Bill's Primary Rule of Tandeming sounds better when you put
a dramatic pause between the third and fourth words:

The Stoker makes... ... no mistakes.

I was never in the Navy, but I've been told if a steersman runs the
ship aground while the Captain is asleep in his bunk, it's the
captain's fault. My rule of tandeming is one step better. Instead of
fixing the blame on a tandem's captain, my rule simply absolves the
stoker. When a problem does occur, a tandem captain is invited to
attempt to shift the blame to such things as traffic, terrain,
equipment, atmospheric conditions or even planetary alignment. But
pox on any captain who would ever be so wrong-headed as to malign a
stoker!
Sorry... just a pet peeve of mine; welcome to BF Sheila.

Last edited by TandemGeek; 04-13-08 at 07:08 PM.
TandemGeek is offline  
Old 04-14-08, 05:06 PM
  #25  
Frida1
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 29

Bikes: Terry Isis

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
You've received lots of good advice, I can't add much except some personal info. from the stoker pov.

Yes, you simply must notify on bumps. My partner is a terrific captain, who has tandemed with many people. He says "bump," or if it's a small one, "bip," or "bip, bip, bip."

We don't find it necessary to notify on changing gears, and never have.

We take turns standing when we want to. He simply says, "standing." When it's my turn, he says, "Switch."

He lets me know when hills are ahead, by simply stating: "Climbing," or "little rise," or "pull on the bars." At a traffic light, he might say "Sprint!" to let me know we need some juice to make it.

To start, I get on the bike, and put the pedals in the right position for him. That's left pedal up, for us. He says, "3, 2, 1 Launch!" and off we go.

As a stocker, I learned never to stop pedalling without letting him know. He learned that when I say I need to pee, I mean it!

Did someone mention www.thetandemlink.com? Lots of great advice for newbies.

Have fun!
Frida1 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2022 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.