Tandems

clid61

Veteran
Location
The North
I spend quite a bit of time in Marrakech with my partner . Cycle a lot when there , partner not too happy about doing it and she suggested a tandem . Ive never ridden a tandem but have had pillion passengers on my motorbikes , some of which " don't go with the flow ".
Is there anything I need to do or know before us both just climbing on a tandem?
Advice appreeciated :smile:
 

YukonBoy

The Monch
Location
Inside my skull
They have a lot of inertia , so you need to allow more time for changes of direction or stopping. If the person on the back doesn't lean through corners it can feel like you're fighting yo get round.

The cranks turn in sync between Captain (on front) and stoker. So if you're going to stop pedalling or speed up, let your partner know before you do it. You'll find you have different preferences for cadence and will have to find a happy medium.

The person, the person on the front controls braking and gearing. If you are going to to brake or go through a lot of gears, let your partner know in advance.

Generally slower uphill but much faster downhill and flats than a single road bike. There are some exceptions and some tandem riders go up hill as fast as anyone.

If you jump on a road bike soon after riding a tandem, you'll feel like you are drunk as you'll be trying to compensate for a stoker that isn't there on your toad bike.

You can get off road as well as road tandems.

Consider getting one with couplers so it can be split in half, if you intend to travel with the tandem.

You won't be able to fit one on many UK trains.

They are great fun.
 

BoldonLad

Über Member
Location
South Tyneside
I spend quite a bit of time in Marrakech with my partner . Cycle a lot when there , partner not too happy about doing it and she suggested a tandem . Ive never ridden a tandem but have had pillion passengers on my motorbikes , some of which " don't go with the flow ".
Is there anything I need to do or know before us both just climbing on a tandem?
Advice appreeciated :smile:
A few years ago, a fellow Brit loaned us his Tandem, to “have a go”. Neither of us had ridden a tandem before, although, wife does ride pillion on my motorcycle. We managed about 10 miles along banks of the Moselle, without falling off, and, only minor bickering. I am sure we would improve with practice, and, we (well I) are considering acquiring a tandem, for “fun” outings. ;)
 
Generally tandems are "Marmite".

We love ours, but I also know couples who've tried it once and sworn never to do it again. Needs a lot of trust in the pilot and great communication for the stoker.

I'm not sure what sort of cycling you're planning in Marrakech, but having been there once myself last year a few observations:

- tandems are hard work in traffic. Not manoeverable, slow to start, need to anticipate rather than react to what's around you. From my experience of Marrakech traffic, I definitely would not recommend one as a means purely of getting around in the city.
- tandems are great on the flat, the plain around Marrakech would be perfect from a terrain perspective.
- up hills, tandems are slower than normal bikes and it's very difficult to get out of the saddle. Plan to go slower than on a solo when riding and also more breaks from a comfort perspective.
- down hills, a tandem is very fast, and brakes overheating is an issue on long or steep descents. If you're planning to go up in the Atlas, a drag brake is absolutely essential IMV.

Best of luck!
 
OP
clid61

clid61

Veteran
Location
The North
Thanks all for the advice , no way am I taking a tandem in the Atlas , on my road bike i've done it up to oukamedian . Just for general pottering around really.
Comment about motorcycle pillion , I was expecting similar and wondered if we should have a go in blighty first .
Much appreciated for everyones input and duelly taken note of :smile:
 

Archie_tect

De Skieven Architek... aka Penfold
Location
Northumberland
A few years ago, a fellow Brit loaned us his Tandem, to “have a go”. Neither of us had ridden a tandem before, although, wife does ride pillion on my motorcycle. We managed about 10 miles along banks of the Moselle, without falling off, and, only minor bickering. I am sure we would improve with practice, and, we (well I) are considering acquiring a tandem, for “fun” outings. ;)
We're selling our Viking Ascot tandem [£400] + roof carrier fix to your own roof bars if you're interested?
 
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