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Picture of our tandem

Old 11-10-21, 07:11 PM
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GhenghisKahn
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Picture of our tandem


Hi, this is our tandem. It's a Silverback(Taiwan made) Duel Limited Edition flat bar 3x9. The comps are Ultegra except for the brake levers and shifters which are Deore. The v-brakes are Tektro. Our plan is to upgrade the fork to a disc compatible when taking it on tours. We're not very experienced at this point. We're still getting used to the process by limiting our outings to a local schoolyard. lol Any tips and suggestions would be most welcomed. Cheers

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Old 11-10-21, 11:50 PM
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Welcome! Tell us more. I assumed a lack of riding experience but I see that at least one of you has some. So tandems are different, but not that different. Do you know about "The Proper Method"? It works for most. You also have heard: "The Stoker is always right". I must be lucky or something because I don't get many complaints from mine. Captains can be guilty of not making sure that their Stokers are as well fitted to the bike as they are. What kind of pedals are you planning to use? I wouldn't worry about getting a disk fork. V's are just fine. Get some quality brake pads. I will say though that Magura makes some hydraulic V-Brakes that I am seriously tempted to try!
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Old 11-11-21, 01:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Welcome! Tell us more. I assumed a lack of riding experience but I see that at least one of you has some. So tandems are different, but not that different. Do you know about "The Proper Method"? It works for most. You also have heard: "The Stoker is always right". I must be lucky or something because I don't get many complaints from mine. Captains can be guilty of not making sure that their Stokers are as well fitted to the bike as they are. What kind of pedals are you planning to use? I wouldn't worry about getting a disk fork. V's are just fine. Get some quality brake pads. I will say though that Magura makes some hydraulic V-Brakes that I am seriously tempted to try!
Hi Leisesturm, thank you for your thoughtful and thorough reply. You're correct. One of us has substantial experience as a touring, utility, off-road, road and commuting cyclist. One of us is a yoga teacher with a go for it attitude. lol We've agreed to go at our stoker's pace in both learning, communication, technique and speed..

The first thing is to swap out the 23mm tyres for 32-35mm for comfort and stability sake. In fitting our stoker's roadbike we had her 'cockpit' fitted at a lbs for a reasonable fee. So, we've transferred those dimensions as close as we could. So far no complaints. But we haven't been on the road in traffic as yet. Nor more than an hour straight on board.

Afa pedals it's platforms for now, but we intend on using dual-sided clipless spd when our stoker is confident. Training would involve using them solo to develop feel and instinct.

We've been haunting YouTube videos, websites and other local tandem teams. 'The Proper Method' seems to be the benchmark approach. For good reason. Here in Wellington, NZ it's a small, but passionate community. Our rig is more on the order of a flat bar road bike. The wheels are 700 as opposed to 26" mtb size. So, the geometry is a little less aggressive. The disc option is a future consideration for when we're ready and confident regarding touring. The downhill, fully loaded speed may or may not require them. We'll make that decision if or when we need the upgrade.

Again thank you for your considerate, thoughtful and thorough reply. Our stoker asked to convey appreciation as well. Cheers and all the best.

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Old 11-11-21, 10:13 AM
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Welcome to the world of tandems. A couple of comments for you, first you might want to consider one-sided SPD pedals with a platform on the other. That is what we've used for years as it gives you a good option should you be in a difficult situation where you may want to put a foot down quickly or you are doing a little ride in street shoes. Second, something we did to give my stoker more confidence on the road. We installed a mirror on her helmet and she kept me informed on what is coming from behind and she very quickly became comfortable riding on the road. She actually prefers that to riding on rail trails. I hope you two enjoy riding together as much as we do.
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Old 11-11-21, 03:46 PM
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Hi Paul J, thank you for the suggestions. It's the intent to give our stoker a couple of rearview options. One on the helmet and one on the bar. We've decided on the above type of dual-sided spd cleat/platform combos as the single sided combos are a bit of a pain to flip around to engage the cleated side. The one pictured above is on our utility fixed gear.

These are the shoes we're using. They both have the cleat/platform option as the clearance of the cleat is so that it doesn't come in contact with either the platform surface or ground. One doesn’t get the crunch sound when off the bike as well. lol We already love riding our tandem, but have a ways to go in the technical aspect. Tandems are as different as they are similar. Quite sure we'll grow to love it as much as yourselves. Thank you for the suggestions. They are much appreciated.

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Old 11-11-21, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by GhenghisKahn View Post
...The first thing is to swap out the 23mm tyres for 32-35mm for comfort and stability sake...
Might be worth measuring your clearance before ordering tires. Remember, tires get taller as they get wider. Hard to tell from the photo but that rear tire looks pretty close to the brake bridge and the short chainstays mean it might be tight at the chainstays too.
Brent
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Old 11-11-21, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by obrentharris View Post
Might be worth measuring your clearance before ordering tires. Remember, tires get taller as they get wider. Hard to tell from the photo but that rear tire looks pretty close to the brake bridge and the short chainstays mean it might be tight at the chainstays too.
Brent

Thanks again, Brent. I've an unused set of 28mm SMPs that clear...not by much, but clear nonetheless. Might order 28mm Gatorskins as they're slightly smaller all around, but provide solid puncture protection. Have a set of 35mm Kendas I pulled off a hybrid when upgrading the tyres. Might give them a look, but doubt they'll fit. We'll probably train with GSs and tour with SMPs.
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Old 11-12-21, 06:53 AM
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Welcome to the world of tandeming! My stoker was not really a cyclist prior to our first tandem acquisition 18 years ago but now loves riding our tandems -- we ride 2000-3500 miles per year together -- may you be as lucky!

Touring on a tandem is great fun -- most of the time! You get lots more interaction with people as tandems elicit interest. This bike does not appear to have any sort of provision for rack mounts, and looks to have fairly tight tire clearances. Perhaps very lightly loaded frame and seat bag credit card touring? Or use a cargo trailer. The V-brakes are fine for touring, even loaded -- we've put many thousands of miles of touring on cantilever and v-brake equipped tandems with no issues, -- even in mountains -- you just need to be sensible. I'd not "upgrade" the fork to a disk-compatible one -- this bike is going to be fun as is -- but it not ideal for loaded touring. If you both really enjoy riding together and do a couple of light tours on this bike then perhaps put the fork money towards another tandem better suited to touring.

Tandems -- you're better twogether!

We're in the USA and have toured here, a fair amount in Europe, and in Japan -- your part of the world is definitely on our bucket list.
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Old 11-12-21, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by GhenghisKahn View Post

Hi, this is our tandem. It's a Silverback(Taiwan made) Duel Limited Edition flat bar 3x9. The comps are Ultegra except for the brake levers and shifters which are Deore. The v-brakes are Tektro. Our plan is to upgrade the fork to a disc compatible when taking it on tours. Were not very experienced at this point. We're still getting used to the process by limiting our outings to a local schoolyard. lol Any tips and suggestions would be most welcomed. Cheers
Very nice-looking first tandem. You will enjoy it! (I was born in Wellington, England. Unfortunately, our our cruise around NZ some years ago did not stop at your Wellington).)
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Old 11-12-21, 07:28 AM
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Originally Posted by JulesCW View Post
Welcome to the world of tandeming! My stoker was not really a cyclist prior to our first tandem acquisition 18 years ago but now loves riding our tandems -- we ride 2000-3500 miles per year together -- may you be as lucky!

Touring on a tandem is great fun -- most of the time! You get lots more interaction with people as tandems elicit interest. This bike does not appear to have any sort of provision for rack mounts, and looks to have fairly tight tire clearances. Perhaps very lightly loaded frame and seat bag credit card touring? Or use a cargo trailer. The V-brakes are fine for touring, even loaded -- we've put many thousands of miles of touring on cantilever and v-brake equipped tandems with no issues, -- even in mountains -- you just need to be sensible. I'd not "upgrade" the fork to a disk-compatible one -- this bike is going to be fun as is -- but it not ideal for loaded touring. If you both really enjoy riding together and do a couple of light tours on this bike then perhaps put the fork money towards another tandem better suited to touring.

Tandems -- you're better twogether!

We're in the USA and have toured here, a fair amount in Europe, and in Japan -- your part of the world is definitely on our bucket list.
Hi Jules, thank you for the rs. We've got a seapost rack with braces that attach to the seat stays. I use it on my fg utility bike. It's rated to 50 kg. Our plan is to use 25L bags on the rear, a frame bag in the large opening and a smaller in the opening between the top tube and middle brace along with a hb bag.

We're keenly aware of the limits of this bike as a tourer. So, wel'll make due for now. It's a good learner rig. Take a few trips of increasing lengths and when we're ready get a proper tandem touring bike like a Burley or Santana. That's a ways off, though.

If/when you do get down under give us a notice. We live about 25k from Wellington CBD and 30km from the airport. A ferry boat ride across Cook Strait gets you to the South Island...much more rural than the North. Aotearoa has less than 5 million people and 3 million live in Auckland metro. Thanks again for your rs. Hope to be able to meet up sometime. Cheers!

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Old 11-12-21, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by GhenghisKahn View Post
Hi Jules, thank you for the rs. We've got a seapost rack with braces that attach to the seat stays. I use it on my fg utility bike. It's rated to 50 kg. Our plan is to use 25L bags on the rear, a frame bag in the large opening and a smaller in the opening between the top tube and middle brace along with a hb bag.

We're keenly aware of the limits of this bike as a tourer. So, wel'll make due for now. It's a good learner rig. Take a few trips of increasing lengths and when we're ready get a proper tandem touring bike like a Burley or Santana. That's a ways off, though.

If/when you do get down under give us a notice. We live about 25k from Wellington CBD and 30km from the airport. A ferry boat ride across Cook Strait gets you to the South Island...much more rural than the North. Aotearoa has less than 5 million people and 3 million live in Auckland metro. Thanks again for your rs. Hope to be able to meet up sometime. Cheers!
Me and mine are definitely not tourers but we have four tandems between us. I'm pretty sure we had the first two before the first month of our relationship, and our tandem riding career (they began simultaneously!) was over. A fifth, a mid-90's Burley Samba would have made a superb tourer but it was stolen before we ever got it on the road. It only cost $550 USD two years ago. Jules is spot on. As much as you love that bike, and she is a beauty, even a short tour will be less pleasant than on a less sport oriented model. I seriously doubt if even 32mm tires will fit under the brake bridge or fork crown of the Duel. The very short chain stays will have your stokers heels contacting the front of the panniers unless I way miss my guess. We're only trying to help. Sometimes that means pushing back (gently) in the face of newbie enthusiasm.
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Old 11-12-21, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Me and mine are definitely not tourers but we have four tandems between us. I'm pretty sure we had the first two before the first month of our relationship, and our tandem riding career (they began simultaneously!) was over. A fifth, a mid-90's Burley Samba would have made a superb tourer but it was stolen before we ever got it on the road. It only cost $550 USD two years ago. Jules is spot on. As much as you love that bike, and she is a beauty, even a short tour will be less pleasant than on a less sport oriented model. I seriously doubt if even 32mm tires will fit under the brake bridge or fork crown of the Duel. The very short chain stays will have your stokers heels contacting the front of the panniers unless I way miss my guess. We're only trying to help. Sometimes that means pushing back (gently) in the face of newbie enthusiasm.
Hi Leisesturm, So sorry to hear of one of your rigs being stolen. Had my main commuter stolen once. Was gutted, so I'm empathetic.

In having done 3 major tours of 2500- 4000+ miles, living out of a tent, outdoor showers, broken spokes, countless punctures the one thing that aggravated me the most on my first tour was what I called hell-strike. lol. Ended up fashioning extensions to raise the rack from some workable, but stiff steel rod obtained at a metal reclamation yard in Ireland. They worked a treat, but taught me a valuable lesson.

In recognizing our tandem is more of a sport model we got a set of water-resistant bags with the front cut at at 45° angle to the bottom from halfway down the front of each bag. So, while they're the size of a square 35-40 ltr bag the cut out eliminates the heel strike issue, hopefully. It compromises the capacity down to 25 ltrs per. That's why we'll obtain a frame bag to make up for the lost capacity.

Afa the tire size, you're correct. We were more than a little over optimistic regarding clearance. A set of 28mm SMPs barely cleared, so I pulled the 25mm SMP tires off my fg which had much more clearance on the fork, chain and seat stays. I put the 23mm tires on my fg. There's no room for mudguards like there will be on a proper touring rig.

With respect to all helpful suggestions please accept apologies if coming off as defensive or ingrates as we deeply appreciate any and all suggestions regarding this completely new venture. There definitely is a certain amount of noob misplaced enthusiasm. lol However, with a 35 year history of touring, utility and commuting experience, fortunately I'm able to stay ahead of the learning curve by anticipatiing most possible issues. After my first tour I realized to continue would have to become a complete tech including wheelbuilding. That was a journey all on its own. lol. Thanks again, cheers.

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Old 11-12-21, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Artmo View Post
Very nice-looking first tandem. You will enjoy it! (I was born in Wellington, England. Unfortunately, our our cruise around NZ some years ago did not stop at your Wellington).)

Hello Artmo, thank you for your kind words. Afa as missing Wellington you're not alone. Before moving here I didn't know it existed. Even though it's consistently selected as a top ten world's most liveable. Now, I wouldn't want to live anywhere else. Its climate is similar to San Francisco. 0-25° C are the consistent temp limits.
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Old 11-13-21, 01:43 AM
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[QUOTE
I We live about 25k from Wellington CBD and 30km from the airport. A ferry boat ride across Cook Strait gets you to the South Island...much more rural than the North. Aotearoa has less than 5 million people and 3 million live in Auckland metro. Thanks again for your rs. Hope to be able to meet up sometime. Cheers![/QUOTE]
The Wairarapa is great place to do some short tours last April we rode over the remutaka trail to Martinborough then onwards up the east coast via route 52 which is a fantastic road ride. Touring on a tandem is great fun but there is not much more capacity in terms of what you can carry than on a single but there is 2 lots of kit to pack. Custom frame bags are 1 way to ekk out a bit more storage
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