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Tandem "Parking" Place

Old 08-14-18, 10:14 AM
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124Spider
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Tandem "Parking" Place on Garage Ceiling

Since we got our tandem earlier this summer, we've been riding it most days. So it has been given its own place in the garage.

Soon, alas, the rains will recommence, we'll be riding our single bikes on trainers most of the time, and we'll want to have a car in the garage again.

So the tandem needs to find a new parking space. There's no good place on the ground in the garage.

I've seen the hoists that allow one to store the bike at the ceiling, easily lowering it when you want to use is. This seems like a good option for a large, heavy bike that's not going to be used much until spring.

Does anyone have personal experience with any such hoist with a tandem? Obviously, we'll have to bolt it into a joist, but, assuming we do that properly, we'd like to have confidence that the hoist isn't going to fail.

Thanks.

Mark

Last edited by 124Spider; 08-14-18 at 01:58 PM.
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Old 08-14-18, 11:23 AM
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Yes - I have used several "bike lifts" (I think that is the brand name). I think that I ordered the last one from Amazon.

They work very well. I have it mounted to an 8' long 2x4 that is mounted to the garage ceiling. The 2x4 allows you to attach it to the ceiling joists without having to align the pulley blocks with the joists.

We have ours mounted in the garage just outside (and parallel to) the garage door track. This allows us to raise & lower the bike with the door open or closed. The front hook grabs the Captain handlebars and the rear hook grabs the rear rim.

Our new tandem is pretty light and within the weight limits of the hoist. The only difficulty is that because of the block & tackle design of the hoist, the hook nearest the hoist rope rises faster than the one farthest from the hoist rope.

There is probably a better solution but this is inexpensive and works well for us.
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Old 08-14-18, 02:08 PM
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Not exactly what you were asking, but I just hang mine by the rims from rubber/plastic coated hooks. A little challenging to manhandle, but I should be capable of it for 10 more years...
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Old 08-14-18, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Scraper View Post
Not exactly what you were asking, but I just hang mine by the rims from rubber/plastic coated hooks. A little challenging to manhandle, but I should be capable of it for 10 more years...
This bike weighs 48 pounds. Last time I hung a bike by its wheels, the wheels bent. I won't be doing that again, especially with a bike this heavy!
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Old 08-14-18, 02:31 PM
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We hang out backup backup tandem from one of these hoists (handlebars and seat). Works very well. It is a pain to use if you have something below it like a mower or snowblower, so keep the floor clear
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Old 08-14-18, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by 124Spider View Post
This bike weighs 48 pounds. Last time I hung a bike by its wheels, the wheels bent. I won't be doing that again, especially with a bike this heavy!
If your rims bend under a 24 pound load, there is really something wrong.

Think about how much force is on your rims when the two of you hit a pothole at 40mph. If they don't bend with that much force, they won't bend when hanging from from hooks.
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Old 08-14-18, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by oldacura View Post
If your rims bend under a 24 pound load, there is really something wrong.

Think about how much force is on your rims when the two of you hit a pothole at 40mph. If they don't bend with that much force, they won't bend when hanging from from hooks.
Well, except it happened.

There's a large difference between the brief force of a bump, and the long-lasting force of gravity over some months, when the bike doesn't move. Gravity wins every time. No, I won't be hanging the bike my its wheels for several month.
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Old 08-14-18, 03:35 PM
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I hang all of our bikes, including the tandems, vertically against the back wall of our garage using bicycle hooks engaging the front wheels. For the tandems, I’ve placed the hooks at a height such that the rear wheel remains on the ground, but just. Both tandems have rear drag brakes controlled by locking levers on the stoker’s handlebar. When the drag brake is locked, it’s easy for me to pivot the bike backwards over the rear wheel until it is pointing at the ceiling. I then release the brake and wheel it against the wall. I then inch the bike skyward ever so slightly to allow me to pivot the front rim over the hook. The bike then stays planted onto the wall with the rear wheel still on the floor supporting most of the weight.
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Old 08-14-18, 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by 124Spider View Post
This bike weighs 48 pounds. Last time I hung a bike by its wheels, the wheels bent. I won't be doing that again, especially with a bike this heavy!
I know this has been discussed ad nauseum, but...
You really think a wheel can support two riders weighing 350 lbs., accelerating, cornering, climbing out of the saddle, braking very hard, bouncing over bumps, curbs, pot holes and any number of adverse impacts, but cannot suspend 50 static lbs.?

Really.

You might want to think about that a little bit.

I hang all my bikes. Most shops hang all their bikes, with the only caveats to avoid the valve stems and wheel stickers and think about suspension oil issues hanging a fork upside down. But that's the only issue.
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Old 08-14-18, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by 124Spider View Post
Well, except it happened.

There's a large difference between the brief force of a bump, and the long-lasting force of gravity over some months, when the bike doesn't move. Gravity wins every time. No, I won't be hanging the bike my its wheels for several month.
Nope. The tension wheel is incredibly strong (400:1 strength to weight) and it doesn't matter if weight sits on it over long periods of time. Each spoke is pulling with approximately 240 lbs tension (assuming properly built; rear wheels vary due to dish). Multiply that by 32 and you have TONS of force (7,680 lb. to be exact)* acting on the whole wheel's component parts the entire time. Gravity is irrelevant at that point.

*A 36 spoke wheel 8,640lbs., a 40 spoke wheel 9,600lbs. Almost TEN THOUSAND pounds of tension on my 40 spoke tandem wheel. And then another almost TEN THOUSAND on the other wheel. Almost TWENTY THOUSAND pounds of force acting on my wheels JUST SITTING THERE!!!! OMG, run away!!!
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Old 08-14-18, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by LV2TNDM View Post
I know this has been discussed ad nauseum, but...
You really think a wheel can support two riders weighing 350 lbs., accelerating, cornering, climbing out of the saddle, braking very hard, bouncing over bumps, curbs, pot holes and any number of adverse impacts, but cannot suspend 50 static lbs.?

Really.

You might want to think about that a little bit.

I hang all my bikes. Most shops hang all their bikes, with the only caveats to avoid the valve stems and wheel stickers and think about suspension oil issues hanging a fork upside down. But that's the only issue.
Perhaps you missed it the first time I responded. I once hung a single bike by its wheel. The wheel bent. That was approximately 25 pounds of bike hanging by one wheel, and the wheel bent. That's pretty much the same as a 48 pound bike hanging by two wheels. I'll not be doing that again, ever. You can cite all sorts of "logic" to the contrary, but actual experience matters far more, to me.

I'm not sure why it's so important to you to make me believe that what happened didn't happen, but please don't bother. Nothing you say (or anyone else says) can or will change the fact that I had a wheel bend doing that, so I won't be doing it again.

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Old 08-14-18, 10:18 PM
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Originally Posted by 124Spider View Post
Perhaps you missed it the first time I responded. I once hung a single bike by its wheel. The wheel bent. That was approximately 25 pounds of bike hanging by one wheel, and the wheel bent. That's pretty much the same as a 48 pound bike hanging by two wheels. I'll not be doing that again, ever. You can cite all sorts of "logic" to the contrary, but actual experience matters far more, to me.
No, I didn't miss the first post. Single bike by its wheel, tandem, unicycle, it doesn't matter. Bikes are hung by their wheels by millions of people every day. And as I replied, bike shops hang all their bikes (repair and new) by their wheels. Never ONCE in 20 years in the industry did I EVER have a wheel bent by hanging. (Decals damaged, yes.) I managed a region of six, then seven stores, totaling thirteen. We were oftentimes Cannondale and Specialized's world's largest retailer, so we moved a lot of bikes. We also repaired a lot of bikes. And NEVER had a wheel problem hanging bikes. That plus the information I gave you on spoke tensions should convince you that it's OK to hang your bike. Or it's considered the norm and acceptable. That's my experience.

That said, you obviously may store your bicycle as you wish. But please know that your bent wheel incident is or was a rare occurrence that probably had nothing to do with hanging the bike. Or if it did, I'd say something was wrong with the wheel or some external force unknown to you acted on the wheel, damaging it.

But what I would hate to come from this thread is another casual reader to follow this thread and come to the conclusion that hanging a bike by either wheel could be a problem. The casual reader may interpret the conversation as, 'Gee, ONE guy says it's OK and the OTHER GUY says it isn't, so I'll play it safe and conclude that it probably isn't a good idea." This would be the wrong conclusion. Kinda like the climate change "debate" where just ONE voice in a million sheds doubt on the issue. It's an open and shut case. I can't emphasize this any more. Or wait, I can!

HANG YOUR BIKES BY YOUR WHEELS, PEOPLE!!!! IT'S OK!!!
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Old 08-14-18, 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by LV2TNDM View Post
No, I didn't miss the first post. ....
Feel better now?
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Old 08-15-18, 02:07 AM
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Originally Posted by 124Spider View Post
This bike weighs 48 pounds. Last time I hung a bike by its wheels, the wheels bent. I won't be doing that again, especially with a bike this heavy!
What do you mean by "bent?" Out of true as when a spoke breaks, or oval-shaped? I suspect you mean "out of true," because a rim would not be pulled out of shape to become oval simply by hanging the bike.
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Old 08-15-18, 09:03 AM
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Ok - so if you don't want to hang your bike by the wheels, you can still use the bike lift to hang it by the captain's bars and the stoker's seat.
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Old 08-15-18, 09:38 AM
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Jumping into a debate that I don't want to be a part of, but here goes: I think there may be something to 124Spiders claim. I have, and a friend has had a hub flange break on a bike hanging on hooks. In my case, the bike had been hanging unused for several years, and that said, I have a few bikes that have been hanging for years with NO issues.

I am not sure comparing hitting a bump to hanging a wheel is a valid comparison. Keeping the effects in simple terms, when you hit a bump, you push in on 1 spoke and distribute the forces over 32 (in reality it varies by spoke, but lets keep it simple) so the force on a given section of the wheel is relatively small. When you hang a bike, there is a small force radially outward on 1 spoke, and the tension is relieved on the other 31. If the spoke under tension has some give, the remainder of the spokes tension are relieved more, transferring more force onto the 1 spoke under tension, and so on, and so on.

I can't imagine the weight of a bike pulling on 1 SPOKE of a rim will cause damage, but we do have some anecdotal evidence that affects are seen.
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Old 08-15-18, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Artmo View Post
What do you mean by "bent?" Out of true as when a spoke breaks, or oval-shaped? I suspect you mean "out of true," because a rim would not be pulled out of shape to become oval simply by hanging the bike.
Oval. Really oval. Really. And solely from hanging by a wheel. Really. Yes, for a long time, but that was all.

One of life's many imponderables is that people who weren't there, and didn't see my oval-shaped wheel, know better than I that what happened didn't happen. Amazing.
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Old 08-15-18, 12:57 PM
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Back to the original question .. . . .

I have two "Floater Hoists"

( I can't post URL's yet . . . but floaterhoist dot com should get you there . . . )

They work very well and hang the bikes flat against the ceiling for maximum clearance. The quality is top-notch.

They are not really made for tandems, but I have hoisted and stored a steel Santana on one of them several times. Probably the most important thing is to be sure that the hoist is securely mounted to the ceiling joists so there is no chance it can pull loose.

I looked at buying components and making my own hoist- but the materials ended up costing as much or more than the commercial product.

The Floater Hoists are "out of stock" at the moment- but they should have more available soon.
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Old 08-15-18, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Alcanbrad View Post
Jumping into a debate that I don't want to be a part of, but here goes: I think there may be something to 124Spiders claim. I have, and a friend has had a hub flange break on a bike hanging on hooks. In my case, the bike had been hanging unused for several years, and that said, I have a few bikes that have been hanging for years with NO issues.

I am not sure comparing hitting a bump to hanging a wheel is a valid comparison. Keeping the effects in simple terms, when you hit a bump, you push in on 1 spoke and distribute the forces over 32 (in reality it varies by spoke, but lets keep it simple) so the force on a given section of the wheel is relatively small. When you hang a bike, there is a small force radially outward on 1 spoke, and the tension is relieved on the other 31. If the spoke under tension has some give, the remainder of the spokes tension are relieved more, transferring more force onto the 1 spoke under tension, and so on, and so on.

I can't imagine the weight of a bike pulling on 1 SPOKE of a rim will cause damage, but we do have some anecdotal evidence that affects are seen.
Let's say your tandem's weight, is indeed, supported by one solitary spoke. That spoke let's assume is at proper tension of 240lbs. Hanging a fifty pound tandem in this scenario would then load this spoke with 290 lbs. This is about a 20% increase in tension. The resulting tension is nowhere near the spoke's yield strength, nor the rim's, nor the hub flange's (depending on lacing pattern). This negligible tension increase would barely affect the rim's true, especially since it's being pulled on radially, where the hanging force has to overcome the adjacent spokes' 240lb. of tension AND deform the rim locally.

When you look at the numbers, it simply does not make sense. And when comparing this to the incredible forces acting on the wheels when a team is actually riding the bike, the 50 lbs. of hanging force is totally negligible. And this is why everyone hangs bikes by the wheels with zero deleterious effects (save for decal and valve stem damage).

And here's something the 124Spider probably didn't think about. By hanging his bike and bending the rim/wheel, he exposed a serious defect or deficiency in that wheel. It's good it failed on the hook in storage rather than on a 40mph descent! Any tandem wheel prone to failure due to hanging is a dangerous wheel ready to catastrophically fail under use. The wheel problem caused by hanging may have prevented a serious crash. Wheel failure in the garage is a much better outcome.

So after some thought, this is the proper conclusion: that the wheel was seriously defective, not that hanging a tandem is the problem.
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Old 08-15-18, 07:08 PM
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I agree with you on both points, in my case where the flange failed, the failure looked like a defect in the original billet. Whether that failure would have manifested itself while riding or only on the hook will never be known.
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Old 08-15-18, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by 124Spider View Post
Since we got our tandem earlier this summer, we've been riding it most days. So it has been given its own place in the garage.

Soon, alas, the rains will recommence, we'll be riding our single bikes on trainers most of the time, and we'll want to have a car in the garage again.

So the tandem needs to find a new parking space. There's no good place on the ground in the garage.

I've seen the hoists that allow one to store the bike at the ceiling, easily lowering it when you want to use is. This seems like a good option for a large, heavy bike that's not going to be used much until spring.

Does anyone have personal experience with any such hoist with a tandem? Obviously, we'll have to bolt it into a joist, but, assuming we do that properly, we'd like to have confidence that the hoist isn't going to fail.

Thanks.

Mark
The ceiling hoists work great -- have had a Salsa Powderkeg (just under 50 lbs) stored that way - mounted to a 2x4 ledger board (as 124spider notes -- this makes it MUCH MUCH easier to install things) -- it has worked great. There are a number of similar products -- note the difference between:

The "delta cycle el greco ceiling hoist bike storage" at REI
and the "RAD cycle products bike hoist" at Amazon
(I can't post links).

The hook in the second one is flat (as opposed to a true "hook" in the Delta product) -- I have had a problem with the flat hook sliding out from under the stoker saddle -- I used a bungie cord to secure it, but finally switched to the Delta hoist -- which has a true hook and have yet to have a problem. I never had a problem with the flat hooks on single bikes -- I think it happens because when raising the bike, there is a bit more tilt in the tandem -- until you get everything to the right height and evened out -- and in this process, the flat hooks can move -- depending on the saddle shape.

The mechanism itself (pulleys / locking mechanism / mounting) has never been a problem (but yes, make sure it is secured properly).

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Old 08-15-18, 10:40 PM
  #22  
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I hear you all. I'm looking to hang the bike from the ceiling, upright. I won't be hanging it from the wheels. Even if I cared to risk it, having once destroyed a wheel doing that, it would take two people, and be very cumbersome, to hang a tandem upside down. With those nice hoists that suspend them upright, one person can do it easily.
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Old 08-16-18, 07:17 AM
  #23  
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Wall Hanging

We have a fairly deep garage and hing our tandems on one of the side walls. One is just off the floor and is in front of where the cars sit and then I have another one that is inline with the cars but higher so it doesn't interfere with the cars. We do need for the pedals on the car side to be in the up position or they interfere with the doors opening. We use two of these per bike and they hang the bike from the top tubes. Works for use, the lower hanging location also works for my work stand.
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Old 08-16-18, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by 124Spider View Post
This bike weighs 48 pounds. Last time I hung a bike by its wheels, the wheels bent. I won't be doing that again, especially with a bike this heavy!
How is that possible? When riding, the bike experiences cyclic loads on the order of 2X the weight of the bike PLUS RIDERS; i.e., 600 lbs., more or less. If your wheels got bent in the process of hanging it, was it that the rims were dented at the point where the hooks attach? That's possible if the hooks don't have enough surface area (or rubber padding) to spread the load over a reasonable area on the rims--which isn't that much for a 48 lb. bike.
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Old 08-16-18, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by sixtiescycles View Post
How is that possible? When riding, the bike experiences cyclic loads on the order of 2X the weight of the bike PLUS RIDERS; i.e., 600 lbs., more or less. If your wheels got bent in the process of hanging it, was it that the rims were dented at the point where the hooks attach? That's possible if the hooks don't have enough surface area (or rubber padding) to spread the load over a reasonable area on the rims--which isn't that much for a 48 lb. bike.
Ah, another one who thinks I'm crazy, who somehow knows that what did happen couldn't happen. That's fine.

Gravity is a weak force, but it always wins. The bike hung there for a long time without being moved. The wheel became oval. Verhy oval. Yes, it actually happened. No, the wheel didn't get "bent in the process of hanging it," it got bent while hanging there in one position for a long time.

Gee, ever heard of the tides? Gravity is quite something!

Have I not been clear enough that I don't care what counter-arguments people throw at me as to why I needn't worry about it happening again (or, even sillier, why it didn't actually happen in the first place)?

Ok, I'll say it again--I'm not going to hang a bike by its wheel(s) ever again. EVER AGAIN. I will, however, suspend it from the ceiling upright; just asking about what's the best tool for that.

There. What's the over/under on how many posts until someone yet again argues?



Mark
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