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  1. #1
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    Importance of stoker standover

    I am looking at trying out the whole mtb tandem thing, but my wife is tiny with a 25" standover.

    Given that none of the stock sizes of true offroad tandems will give her anything but negative standover, is there any chance of us feeling comfortable on semi technical trails without a very custom frame?

    We have a road tandem and obviously the negative standover is not an issue, I am just concerned with sudden stops mid obstacle in the mountains of colorado.

  2. #2
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    I am thinking that if you come to a sudden stop and throw one foot/leg out, the other foot will be at the 6 o'clock pedal position, making it difficult for your petite stoker to reach the ground on the leaning side. One option is that you alone, the captain, are wholly responsible for keeping the bike upright. This is not as difficult as it sounds, especially if your stoker is not very heavy.

    Option 2 is that your stoker will develop some sort of technique for unclipping (or maybe riding flats) so she can escape with both feet. ...hopefully without upsetting the balance to where you can't recover it.

    We may just be over-thinking the whole standover thing anyway - children seem to make these adaptations without a thought.

    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  3. #3
    PMK
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    Without sounding like a smarty pants, she'll learn.

    Honestly, for us on the ECDM, with unladden suspension, I know I must straddle sidesaddle or be doomed.

    As for the stoker, I believe Jeanne can not flat foot either.

    I just asked her, and she wasn't exactly certain, though her words were she never has worried about it.

    Road tandem wise, we easily straddle the Co-Motion.

    I many times wish the off-road bike were even taller so it could get over more features on the trail. We clear plenty of stuff, but the taller (more than 18") logovers or rocks high center us. Obviously if they have long lead in and declines we roll over.

    PK
    Reps! We don't need no stickin' reps!

  4. #4
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    We have an ECdM in 17/16, and I just went to measure stoker standover for kicks - 30". This is with 2.5" tires and a 180mm front fork, suspension at full extension.

    Interestingly, I don't think any stokers post here. I'll ask my stoker over the weekend. From my experience in riding, stoker standover isn't that important in practice. Now, to get to that point (stoker comfortability on the bike, etc., of which standover could be a factor) may be the hurdle you face, and not actual standover issues.

    My stoker never puts feet down while we're riding. Yes, from time to time I make a mistake and we end up on the ground, but in those cases stoker standover clearance wasn't going to save her from a dirt bath.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the replies guys, that makes me feel better. She only weighs about a buck-ten, so based on what I've heard, I think we will be good to go with -1" or so standover.

  6. #6
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    I asked my stoker, and she says she never puts both feet on the ground during a ride, and very rarely even one. I'd also guess that she's about an inch shy of our bike's standover anyway.

    The only issue might be how your stoker gets on and off a bike. If she straddles it, then gets up on the seat, that might present an issue. But I'd assume as captain of your road tandem, you hold the bike while she mounts/dismounts anyway.

  7. #7
    mib
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    My wife never puts her feet down, she can't reach the ground. She is under 5' tall. She just climbs on, brings the pedals around, says ready, and we are off. Just hold the breaks on as she gets on and off and you will be fine. ;-)

    PS make sure you have your legs out the way as the stokers rotates the pedals.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Okayfine View Post
    ...stoker comfortability on the bike...
    ^^^I am totally stealing this word.

    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mib View Post
    PS make sure you have your legs out the way as the stokers rotates the pedals.
    Oh, he'll learn PDQ.

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