Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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!

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 04-14-18, 01:10 PM   #1
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
New tandem coming -- Wheelset & Gearing Struggles

We have a new carbon tandem coming in the next couple weeks. I am struggling with two important components of spec'g out the bike ...

1. Wheelset options. Mainly, going more aero or lighter weight.
2. Gearing options. Mainly, 2x or 3x.

Wheelset Options
I had been set on going with the Spinergy Stealth Carbon Tandem Wheelset. They seem to have many happy owners and I don't see many if any negative reviews. They look great and their price-point is right at my max for a tandem wheelset. HOWEVER, just noticed today they are 2060 grams in weight. Wow. So, yes, they are aero with the deep rim, but you are paying with their heft. On the other hand, and by comparison, the Spinergy Xaero Light wheelset is only 1673 grams. That is quite the difference in weight. Both sets use the same PBO spokes and can be color matched as desired. I like the looks of the aero Stealth wheelset with the deep rims better.

Thoughts? Input? Anyone had an opportunity to put many miles on both sets and willing to share your experience?

Gearing Options
I did a ton of online research on the Double / 2x vs. the Triple 3x for gearing and overall my take-away was it was about 50/50. I've had the Triple on my Cannondale tandem since 2005 and used to it. However, the ease of the Double that I'm used to on my single/half bike sounds nice too. I was going to go w/ the Triple on the new tandem with a recommendation from Mel and seeing a video he took of the Synch Shifting using the Ultegra Di3. The more people I talk with including my LBS though, makes me question that decision a bit. A big part of me prefers to have a double. And, it seems like my primary concerns of a) Tighter spacing between gear changes and b) plenty of low gear inches for taking really tough (18+ Perc) hills can be accomplished with double as well as a triple.

Thoughts? I'm sure there are folks in both camps. But, which one is the safer route that I won't regret? Tough decision.

Thanks for all the help!
__________________
-\Brian
18' Landshark Tandem - Custom
15' Wabi Special Single-Speed Road
06' Cannondale Six13 TeamOne
06' Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
92' Trek 5200
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-18, 06:58 AM   #2
bwebel
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Bikes:
Posts: 74
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 17 Post(s)
Gearing really is a personal choice, and comes down mainly to how closely spaced you like your gears and how hilly your area is. If you get a double with a 34x53 and 11x36 combo, that's going to get you over most climbs that you'll face on the road, but you are looking at pretty big jumps compared to a 30x39x53 combo with an 11x32.

The type of shifting you want can also matter. SRAM doesn't make triple front doubletap shifters, so you need to do something like using a barend shifter for the front derailleur if you want a triple with SRAM.

We get over everything around us with a 39x32, so I have the bike set up with a 39x53 double, but it's a triple crank, so if we ever go to real mountains, I can put the 30 chainring on as needed. If I wanted to leave the triple on, then I could put an 11x25 on the back for regular riding, but I'll put up with the wider shift gaps on the cassette not to deal with the triple in the front.
bwebel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-18, 03:50 PM   #3
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
What about Wheelset options? The Rolf Carbon's are looking decent even though they are around $500 more than the Spinergy Stealth. The Rolf Carbon wheels are also about 500 grams lighter. That is a lot less rolling weight!

Thoughts?
__________________
-\Brian
18' Landshark Tandem - Custom
15' Wabi Special Single-Speed Road
06' Cannondale Six13 TeamOne
06' Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
92' Trek 5200
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-18, 08:07 AM   #4
diabloridr
Senior Member
 
diabloridr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Central Coast, California, USA
Bikes: Co-Motion Macchiato, Co-Motion Speedster, Calfee Dragonfly, Ancient Sun Fixie, Trek 5900
Posts: 370
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Concerning gearing: We went through a similar exercise when we built our Macchiatto last year. Detailed report here:


https://www.bikeforums.net/tandem-cy...long-post.html


The clear trend in the industry is away from multiple speed chainrings. Mountain bikes and gravel bikes are difficult to find with triples (and some are being built around single chainrings).


The risk of triples becoming unicorns in the not so distant future made the decision to spec a double an easy one for us.
diabloridr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-18, 09:56 AM   #5
Carbonfiberboy 
just another gosling
 
Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Everett, WA
Bikes: CoMo Speedster 2003, Trek 5200, CAAD 9, Fred 2004
Posts: 13,465
Mentioned: 55 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1100 Post(s)
Our 2003 Co-Motion triple is still working perfectly for us. Love the 26 X 34 low gear and the close ratios in the granny ring.

We are running Chris King hubs with Kinlin XC279 36H rims and CX-Ray spokes. Light wheels, plenty aero, nice looking, and very durable. 285 lb. team. Hubs are original and get serviced once a year, quite inexpensively.
__________________
Results matter
Carbonfiberboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-18, 10:14 AM   #6
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by diabloridr View Post
Concerning gearing: We went through a similar exercise when we built our Macchiatto last year. Detailed report here:


https://www.bikeforums.net/tandem-cy...long-post.html


The clear trend in the industry is away from multiple speed chainrings. Mountain bikes and gravel bikes are difficult to find with triples (and some are being built around single chainrings).


The risk of triples becoming unicorns in the not so distant future made the decision to spec a double an easy one for us.
Diabloridr,

Can you give me your thoughts and experience with the Rolf Carbon Tandem wheels?
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-18, 12:17 PM   #7
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
I really would like to move to the 2x ... but with the hills we know we will do now and then that exceed 12% (and a few 18% and up to 21%) not having at least the same gear inches as we had before (or now) I am leaning toward the 3x. With the 3x I am able to keep tighter gearing ratios ... with less of a jump or up down when changing gears. Right now on our 9sp ... there is a decent jump between gears even on our triple. And, just knowing that we have the gear inches around 20 to 24 for the tough ascents makes us feel better.
__________________
-\Brian
18' Landshark Tandem - Custom
15' Wabi Special Single-Speed Road
06' Cannondale Six13 TeamOne
06' Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
92' Trek 5200
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-18, 02:20 PM   #8
diabloridr
Senior Member
 
diabloridr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Central Coast, California, USA
Bikes: Co-Motion Macchiato, Co-Motion Speedster, Calfee Dragonfly, Ancient Sun Fixie, Trek 5900
Posts: 370
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by woodcycl View Post
I really would like to move to the 2x ... but with the hills we know we will do now and then that exceed 12% (and a few 18% and up to 21%) not having at least the same gear inches as we had before (or now) I am leaning toward the 3x. With the 3x I am able to keep tighter gearing ratios ... with less of a jump or up down when changing gears. Right now on our 9sp ... there is a decent jump between gears even on our triple. And, just knowing that we have the gear inches around 20 to 24 for the tough ascents makes us feel better.


Have you spent time really checking the numbers with a gearing calculator?

We moved from 3x9 to 2x11 and made only minor compromises for top and bottom gearing, while keeping the same or tighter jumps between gears. Eliminating the decision process on when to engage a small ring is a huge plus.

Partially this is due to the fact that a 3x9 setup really only gives you 20 gears (3x9x8) while a 2x11 will usually yield 21 useable gears.

Our 34/50 x 11-36 gearing yields a 25.3 gear-inch low. Switching to a 11-40 would increase the jumps marginally but yield an even lower 22.8 gear-inch low.

Just food for thought.
diabloridr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-18, 03:24 PM   #9
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by diabloridr View Post
Have you spent time really checking the numbers with a gearing calculator?

We moved from 3x9 to 2x11 and made only minor compromises for top and bottom gearing, while keeping the same or tighter jumps between gears. Eliminating the decision process on when to engage a small ring is a huge plus.

Partially this is due to the fact that a 3x9 setup really only gives you 20 gears (3x9x8) while a 2x11 will usually yield 21 useable gears.

Our 34/50 x 11-36 gearing yields a 25.3 gear-inch low. Switching to a 11-40 would increase the jumps marginally but yield an even lower 22.8 gear-inch low.

Just food for thought.
Diabloridr, yes have used the gear inch calculator online serveral times and have them listed in a excel spreadsheet and have gone over them back and forth several times.

the 34/50 with 11-40 ... giving me a 34 / 40 granny gear is one gear easier than I have now. I was just afraid that the jump between gears on that 11-40 stacked cogset would be too large. But, I have no experience with gearing on a 11sp with that far of a range. My single bike is a 10 sp 12-28 so I'm used to small steps on that and didn't want to take a chance of even wider spacing than what I have now. I do like the 34/50 on my single bike!

I wish this were an easier decision! lol
__________________
-\Brian
18' Landshark Tandem - Custom
15' Wabi Special Single-Speed Road
06' Cannondale Six13 TeamOne
06' Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
92' Trek 5200
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-18, 05:47 AM   #10
lichtgrau
Junior Member
 
lichtgrau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Bikes: (Ti) Rabbit "soulmate" plus half a dozen "half bikes"
Posts: 17
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
...if Rohloff is even an option: I could probobly give some information about adaptation to a derailleur gear dropout...
lichtgrau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-18, 01:23 PM   #11
bwebel
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Bikes:
Posts: 74
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 17 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by woodcycl View Post
Diabloridr, yes have used the gear inch calculator online several times and have them listed in a excel spreadsheet and have gone over them back and forth several times.

the 34/50 with 11-40 ... giving me a 34 / 40 granny gear is one gear easier than I have now. I was just afraid that the jump between gears on that 11-40 stacked cogset would be too large. But, I have no experience with gearing on a 11sp with that far of a range. My single bike is a 10 sp 12-28 so I'm used to small steps on that and didn't want to take a chance of even wider spacing than what I have now. I do like the 34/50 on my single bike!

I wish this were an easier decision! lol
What cranks are you going to use? If you get a triple, you can always just take the granny ring off and use it as a double if you decide you don't like it. Or start out with a double and the put the third ring on if you decide you hate the gaps.

I find that I adapt to larger gaps on the tandem than I do on a single, but I really can't imagine adapting to the gaps in an 11x40 cassette. I think the 11x32 is about as much as I could take.
bwebel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-18, 01:31 PM   #12
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by bwebel View Post
What cranks are you going to use? If you get a triple, you can always just take the granny ring off and use it as a double if you decide you don't like it. Or start out with a double and the put the third ring on if you decide you hate the gaps.

I find that I adapt to larger gaps on the tandem than I do on a single, but I really can't imagine adapting to the gaps in an 11x40 cassette. I think the 11x32 is about as much as I could take.
We are going w/ the Davinci Cranks. So, they would be 52/39/30. And, a 11-36 cassette as long as we have the 30 front chainring.
__________________
-\Brian
18' Landshark Tandem - Custom
15' Wabi Special Single-Speed Road
06' Cannondale Six13 TeamOne
06' Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
92' Trek 5200
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-18, 01:37 PM   #13
bwebel
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Bikes:
Posts: 74
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 17 Post(s)
The Davincis are really easy to change, even from 110 BCD to 130 BCD, so stop obsessing at this point, go with your decision, and know it's not too hard to change if you hate it :-)

WRT to the wheels you mentioned, I've never used the new Rolf carbons, but have been happy with the aluminum sets that I have had, so I personally would go with those. (if you'd be interested in a nearly new set of the previous generation Rolf carbons cheap, PM me. I have a barely used set that, sadly, aren't likely to be used much more at this point)
bwebel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-18, 08:57 AM   #14
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Thanks for all the input everyone!

Looks like I'm going with Triple Chainring / gearing and the Rolf Carbon Wheelset with black decals. Nice knowing that I am able to go to a double chainring without too much trouble and expense.
__________________
-\Brian
18' Landshark Tandem - Custom
15' Wabi Special Single-Speed Road
06' Cannondale Six13 TeamOne
06' Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
92' Trek 5200
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-18, 09:52 AM   #15
akexpress
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Anchorage, Ak
Bikes: 2015 Calfee Tetra tandem,2016 Calfee Tetra Adventure Tandem, Ventana ECDM 26 mtn tandem, Ventana ECDM 29r full suspension Mtn tandem ,Ventana Fat tire tandem, Calfee Dragon Fly, Santa Cruz Carbon 5010, 907 Whiteout fat tire
Posts: 568
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
So are you going with DI2 ? I assume that you are then using either Xt or Xtr derailleurs and pairing with Ultegra road shifters? I will be very curious how the front derailleur handles the 52 or 53 chainrings size. I have the above combo on one of our tandems but the largest chainring we have is a 46 and it handles that well. I have Ultegra road derailleurs and a double chain ring setup to change to when we are not loaded touring so the versatility is a nice option. Please report back when you get the bike and have a few miles on it.
akexpress is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-18, 11:28 AM   #16
woodcycl
Cycle for life...
Thread Starter
 
woodcycl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Southern Indiana
Bikes: Trek 5200 | Cannondale Six13 TeamOne | Cannondale Road Tandem | Cannondale Prophet 3 "Lefty"
Posts: 1,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by akexpress View Post
So are you going with DI2 ? I assume that you are then using either Xt or Xtr derailleurs and pairing with Ultegra road shifters? I will be very curious how the front derailleur handles the 52 or 53 chainrings size. I have the above combo on one of our tandems but the largest chainring we have is a 46 and it handles that well. I have Ultegra road derailleurs and a double chain ring setup to change to when we are not loaded touring so the versatility is a nice option. Please report back when you get the bike and have a few miles on it.
According to Mel at Tandems East, this is the setup he install and sets up primarily on the tandems he sells. I've seen a video he sent me where he displays how the synch shifting works and it was quote smooth. Fingers crossed!
woodcycl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-18, 07:32 AM   #17
Paul J
Senior Member
 
Paul J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Lancaster County PA
Bikes: 1982 Eddy Merckx Campy Super Record, 1995 Eddy Merckx 10 sp Campy Centaur, Bushnell Tandem, Co-Motion Speedster
Posts: 698
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 58 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by woodcycl View Post
According to Mel at Tandems East, this is the setup he install and sets up primarily on the tandems he sells. I've seen a video he sent me where he displays how the synch shifting works and it was quote smooth. Fingers crossed!
A couple we ride with purchased a custom Landshark from Mel last spring with this set-up and it seems to work well. We've ridden with them on several occasions. Here are couple of pictures.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Di3-one.JPG (144.9 KB, 65 views)
File Type: jpg Di3-two.JPG (129.6 KB, 65 views)
Paul J is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-18, 07:42 PM   #18
turbozinke
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Fort Smith, AR
Bikes: Litespeed tandem, Litespeed Ultimate, Schwinn unicycle
Posts: 27
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Triple makes the most sense to me. I have 30-39-53 front and 12-28 rear. I basically use the gears just like I do on my single except occasionally, on a really steep hill, we have to drop down to the little ring on the front. With some basic experience, which I'm sure you have since you've been riding a tandem for a long time, you know when you're going to need the little ring. If you have a good setup it should work very well.

We have the spinergy wheels with bladed spokes. Our previous wheels were rolf prima tandem. The spinergys ride like a cadillac compared to the rolfs. I would never go back. I know you're talking carbon so I can't speak to that.
turbozinke is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:24 PM.


We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    get answers from real people!
Click to start entering your question.
I HAVE A QUESTION