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  1. #1
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    Looking for tandem fatbike builder

    My wife and I started dating on my dad's old Santana, since then we've had a few others but the best toy has been our Ventana El Testigo Experto which has taken us through the Transrockies TR7 twice now. We are in North Idaho and I've had a Pusley for years. I have a dream of a fat tandem for our snowmobile trails out here. I've seen one from Belgium and a couple of prototypes on the web. I've sent a few emails to both fatbike and tandem manuacturers without anyone really geting excited about it. I'd love an aluminum frame and to fit Moonlander wheels for stiffness, light (relatively) weight, and maximum float. Let me know if any of you can think of somebody who would take on this project. Tom

  2. #2
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    I think Alex at MTBtandems.com was working on something, but have not heard any details...

    Alex???

  3. #3
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    I did get an immediate response from the guys at Sandman Bikes in Belgium. We're starting to talk details before even thinking about cost. So far I'm very impressed with them. I'll update as things develop.

  4. #4
    PMK
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    I would talk to this guy too.

    QUIRINGCYCLES.NET

    He is in the running to build our next off-road tandem.

    If he'll do a big tire machine, I bet he'll build exactly what you want, in most any material.

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

  5. #5
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    616

    The guys over at 616 Fabricators had one at the Ore to Shore, it was their first demo. There were some things that needed to be improved on it (tube stiffness mostly), but they were talking like they were taking orders. Bike Frames, Hubs, Merch, West Michigan, Six 1 Six Bicycle Fabrication
    GET Bret Weir, I said.

  6. #6
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    "RIDE IT LIKE YOU HATE IT"

  7. #7
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    I was thinking about the same thing. We don't have snow here, but I am enjoying my fat front a lot! I figure all you need is a chromoly tandem frame and a pugsley (or moonlander).

    Take the 100mm bb from the pugsley and the cs and ss and replace the rear end. If you could get surly to donate one of those broken ss (at the seat tube so you'd cut it there anyways) pugsleys and found a cheap steel frame, you could totally try it out cheaply without breaking the bank.

    Trusting a fat fork on a tandem could be a bit more complicated and risky, however. One of those dual crown forks that accepts a 3.8" tire might be just the thing.

    You would also have to fiddle to get the timing chain's chainline right, but I don't think chainline problems would kill the idea. Maybe the worst case scenario is that you have to change the front to a 100mm shell as well.
    Last edited by PretendGentleman; 12-20-2012 at 07:58 AM.

  8. #8
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    John has been building a lot of fat bikes lately and he has built many tandems over the years for various brand name tandems. Hargadon custom cycles | Facebook
    2 wheels == True

  9. #9
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    John changed his Facebook account http://www.facebook.com/hargadon.cycles.3
    2 wheels == True

  10. #10
    Dinner for wolves
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    In my mind's eye, I am seeing a human powered version of this:

    Responds to gravity

  11. #11
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    I'd post a pic of our fat tandem but I don't have enough posts on this forum to post pics. You can see it on Facebook by searching for Mom & Pop Racing. PM of email me for details on the build......

    It rides great..... The pic shows a missing timing chain because we broke it during this race.... we finished without it!

    I will second Scott Quiring if you're serious about a custom fat frame... If anyone can pull it off with out a hitch it's Scott!

  12. #12
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    Any updates? Any new fat tandems out there? After spending a lot more time on a fat bike, I am beginning to think this could be a lot of fun!

    There are a few builders out there that will do a custom fat tandem, but it seems that Sandman is the only "production" fat tandem out there. I also hear that Ventana is working on a prototype...

  13. #13
    MTB Tandem Nut
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    Ventana will be doing a fat bike tandem shortly. Stay tuned for details. Also have discussed with 616, and they're doing a couple now. Should have more info from them shortly too.
    MTB Tandems Inc.
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  14. #14
    Sup
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    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-tandem.jpg

    I made my own
    just needs paint
    I am slow therefore I am

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burnt-Orange View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I made my own
    just needs paint
    Sweet!

    Can you provide details?

    Tire/rim size, Rear spacing, Gearing etc.

    Thanks!

  16. #16
    Sup
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    xs pugs back reinforced
    khs tandem down tube and front ebb bb converted to pinch bolt
    35mm down and top tubes from nova
    all angles 72 degrees
    front sized to match my 17.5 stumpy frame rear is for the really short people in my life
    165 rear 170 front trials cranks with white industries free wheel for independent pedal
    hope tech 4 brakes with 203 rotors
    light marge rims and black floyds
    i9 rear hub and hope front hub built up with sapiam strong spokes 2.3/2.0 single butted with brass nipples

    I built it for comfortable gravel grinding and road riding with the wife
    we are going to use it on a century with all the roadies this fall
    I am slow therefore I am

  17. #17
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    My wife and I are riding a brand new FAT Tandem from Rogue Cycle Works in Grand Rapids, MI. Daniel Koert is the builder, formerly with 616. It's a marvelous machine, rides great! You can contact Daniel at koertdaniel@gmail.com or find him on Facebook; search Rogue Cycle Works. You can see photos of our tandem below.

  18. #18
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    Rogue Cycle Works Fat Tandem

    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-10397261_301372250022598_4966707232683403267_o.jpgLooking for tandem fatbike builder-img_7692.jpgLooking for tandem fatbike builder-img_9544.jpg

  19. #19
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    What does a Fat Tandem ride like on real trails (i.e. not snow or sand)?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Okayfine View Post
    What does a Fat Tandem ride like on real trails (i.e. not snow or sand)?
    We have ridden our FAT tandem on single track and gravel roads. The key is getting the right tire pressure. Assuming the PSI is right on, the bike rides very well. For example, 10 psi front/12 psi rear works well for single track; 17 psi front/20 psi rear works well for gravel roads. We have a full suspension tandem (daVinci) and prefer that for single track, the FAT tandem is rigid front and rear, so a little harsh for us, but completely manageable if you're used to full rigid. The bike excels on gravel! The fat tires give us total confidence when the gravel gets loose, way better than our Cannondale with cyclocross tires. We're looking forward to winter, we think it will work great!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Staublin View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Wow!!!
    What size are those Wheels and Tires??
    I haven't really looked into these Fat Tire bikes yet...

  22. #22
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    Looking for tandem fatbike builder

    What did you pay for your Rogue, if you don't mind me asking?


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by sisu View Post
    What did you pay for your Rogue, if you don't mind me asking?


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
    what he said^^^
    Also, do you know how much it weighs?

  24. #24
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    Looking for tandem fatbike builder

    And while we are talking about your Rogue, will it be possible to run 29 inch wheels on it (29+)?

    Thanks


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

  25. #25
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    Quiring Fatty Tandem

    In the next couple days I will have my Quiring fatty tandem! It is going to be able to fit Bud/Lou on 100mm rims no problem as well as 29er+ wheels for singletrack/gravel.
    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-img_2335.jpg
    He is using his chainstay yoke design to make the drivetrain stiffness as good as possible.
    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-img_2410.jpg
    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-img_2602.jpg
    Dual Phil Wood 100mm eccentric BBs (which are far too pretty to be hiding inside the BB shells) so it can run SS in the warmer months for beach riding.
    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-img_2603.jpg
    Speaking of which, Scott sealed most of the tubes so I shouldn't have to worry about water coming into the frame tubes (except obviously for the seat tubes) while riding the shoreline.

    Thru axles front and rear to deal with braking stress and add some additional stiffness. Also planning on running an angleset on the front so I can modify the handling depending on the season, surface conditions and how "racey" we are feeling.

    Scott also built up a nice burly fork with a variety of reinforcements to handle the added stresses of riding hard with the massive amount of traction the fat tires provide. This pic is from right after he bent the fork legs but hadn't mitered tubes or welded anything:
    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-img_2337.jpg
    Final product just out of the jig and before the braze-ons and some additional welding:
    Looking for tandem fatbike builder-img_0501.jpg
    Needless to say, I am VERY excited to get this beast rolling.

  26. #26
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    What are people using for an eccentric for these fat tandems????

  27. #27
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    Can't speak to what others are doing but Phil Wood is making 100mm wide eccentrics now so that is the route I went. Quiring had to machine a BB shell to get the correct dimensions but that is pretty straightforward for most builders.

  28. #28
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    Posted some info on the complete bike at Fat-Bike.com: Fatty Quiring Tandem | FAT-BIKE.COM

  29. #29
    MTB Tandem Nut
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    Ventana has announced their fat tandem frame info: $1,695.00 MSRP is the biggie - beats the custom guys hands down (not that I don't lust after their stuff, but I'm in the business of selling tandems, and price does matter...).
    170mm rear spacing standard, 177 thru-axle optional, 190mm optional.
    2 standard colors, Grinch Green and Mango Tango; other Ventana colors available with an upcharge.
    Tapered head tube.
    No fork from Ventana. We're working with a builder to make us some fat forks that match the frame geometry.
    Parts for these tandems are still pretty expensive relative to "regular" tandems, which are pretty expensive relative to "regular" bikes, so the overall cost will still be steeper than, say, a Fandango, but hopefully that will change as more fat parts become available. Rear hubs will continue to be one challenge, and the choice is even more limited for fat tandems than for regular tandems. Same with rims, etc.
    Anyway, just wanted to throw this info out there. We're taking pre-orders on the first batch of Ventana frames (we get the 2nd one; the first one goes to Sherwood, naturally). If anyone's interested, I'm doing a Rohloff build for around $5k as an intro.
    MTB Tandems Inc.
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  30. #30
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    Just thought I would follow up with some info on how our Quiring fat bike tandem has been working. In a word, it has been AWESOME! Scott Quiring stoked for me at Iceman and were able to win the tandem class. From the few rides Scott and I got in on the bike, I thought it may be slow and ponderous feeling but I think it is faster offroad on our Michigan trails than my Quiring 29er tandem. Finally I feel like I have enough traction to handle the incredible speeds and forces that a MTB tandem can put out. For instance, climbing out of the saddle on loose climbs was no problem and we had minimal slipping from the rear tire.

    If you are interested in any footage of our Iceman, I have some posted on YouTube: Iceman 2014 - YouTube It only covers the first 1.5 hrs of the race because the batteries died on the GoPros I had front and rear due to the cold temperatures.

  31. #31
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    You guys crushed it. I really enjoyed looking at that bike at the expo. Can you twll me about the stoker stem? It looks like a regular Thomson stem on the Cap's seatpost- what diameter is the post?

  32. #32
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    Now if Ventana would build a 142x12 dropout rear triangle for my ECDM 29er I'd be ecstatic! The fat bike looks interesting. If we could demo one I might get more excited.
    2 wheels == True

  33. #33
    Stephen
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    I'm trying to talk my wife into a Fatbike tandem, doubly difficult from NZ as acquiring one is hard enough but convincing her to play...even more so. Question..I'm 6'3" and she's 5'2". Is that too big a discrepancy in height to make it easy/fun. E.g. Will she see anything??? I'm in the front no matter what!! Lol.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebnelson View Post
    Now if Ventana would build a 142x12 dropout rear triangle for my ECDM 29er I'd be ecstatic!
    They did one for our 26"............................can't see why they wouldn't do a 29er.

    Edit.....................ours is 145.
    Last edited by switchbacktrog; 11-22-2014 at 04:44 AM. Reason: error

  35. #35
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    Yeah, that is just a Thomson X2 road stem for the stoker stem. It is a 140mm x 17 degree which when run upside down works great and is a lot lighter than most of the dedicated stoker stems I have seen. The seatposts on the tandem are 27.2mm and we are using a shim to step up the diameter to 28.6mm for the clamp on the Thomson stem. Problem Solvers makes a variety of seatpost shims and I just cut one down so that it didn't protrude outside of the clamp area of the Thomson stem.

  36. #36
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    I wouldn't think that would be an issue for a custom builder to accommodate your heights but may be difficult to find a stock tandem that would fit well. I know Quiring has shipped frames all over the world so it may be worth discussing directly with him.

    We have seen a flurry of fat bike tandems released recently (Santana, Ventana, Rogue...). From a fat biker perspective, most of the designs are using fairly old school fat bike tech which is kind of a bummer to see. Fat bikes have evolved a bunch in recent years and in ways that really help make a fatty tandem viable for snow and loose sand riding. I think a fat bike tandem offers some big benefits for "normal" MTBing but if you want a fat bike tandem to be fully functional in soft conditions, make sure whatever builder you go with takes advantage of the latest tech from the fat bike world.

    There are a lot of good tandem builders out there and there are a lot of good fat bike builders. There aren't that many frame builders that have a foot in both worlds and have a lot of real world riding experience in fat biking and tandeming. I am not saying this to indicate that Quiring is only way to go. Rather, you just want to make sure a builder is pretty well versed in both tandems and fat bikes if you want a final product that will actually work well in loose conditions.

  37. #37
    MTB Tandem Nut
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebnelson View Post
    Now if Ventana would build a 142x12 dropout rear triangle for my ECDM 29er I'd be ecstatic! The fat bike looks interesting. If we could demo one I might get more excited.
    They do make one now for both 145mm and 135mm. I'm sure they'd sell you one.
    MTB Tandems Inc.
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  38. #38
    PMK
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbudell View Post
    I wouldn't think that would be an issue for a custom builder to accommodate your heights but may be difficult to find a stock tandem that would fit well. I know Quiring has shipped frames all over the world so it may be worth discussing directly with him.

    We have seen a flurry of fat bike tandems released recently (Santana, Ventana, Rogue...). From a fat biker perspective, most of the designs are using fairly old school fat bike tech which is kind of a bummer to see. Fat bikes have evolved a bunch in recent years and in ways that really help make a fatty tandem viable for snow and loose sand riding. I think a fat bike tandem offers some big benefits for "normal" MTBing but if you want a fat bike tandem to be fully functional in soft conditions, make sure whatever builder you go with takes advantage of the latest tech from the fat bike world.

    There are a lot of good tandem builders out there and there are a lot of good fat bike builders. There aren't that many frame builders that have a foot in both worlds and have a lot of real world riding experience in fat biking and tandeming. I am not saying this to indicate that Quiring is only way to go. Rather, you just want to make sure a builder is pretty well versed in both tandems and fat bikes if you want a final product that will actually work well in loose conditions.
    I watched some portions of the Iceman 2014 video you did. Neat stuff. Seeing the conditions of the short singletrack sections and how wet and muddy the long doubletracks were, the bike you chose was no doubt bringing a gun to a gun fight tandem wise.

    I thought I noticed in the video that there were a number of either 29's with big tires or fat bikes, could not tell for certain on account of the camera angles.

    I watched various sections of the video and pretty much skipped around. The portion from about 55 minutes until the bike stalled from mud on the chain was pretty cool and seemed almost typical tandem. Able to hold your own in most open single track, but if the terrain opens up a good tandem team can let it run. The DH muddy road section showed the tandems ability to open it up, sadly though, once it heads back up those pesky singles get hungry.

    The single fatbikes I have ridden were owned by others and ran soft tire pressures. Care to share some additional info about the setup, including tire pressures. The tires you ran during the race seemed a good choice, and I agree that that wide tire would have been a great choice in the wet conditions.

    Currently we have no intentions to go fat tire tandem. Our ECDM in 26 does quite well and provides lively handling for the technical stuff we ride. Sadly the ECDM is not seeing much use on account of stoker injuries, but maybe a big fat squishy tire bike could be fun to play on.

    Awesome results on the race.

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

  39. #39
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    Hi Paul,
    Pat and I recently purchased single Fat Bikes as a diversion from tandem riding. They are great fun. We typically run between 8-12 psi depending on conditions(still dialing it in) A lot of riders go with Ghetto Tubeless which we are considering. A Fat tandem would be loads of fun but don't want to plunk down 5 grand for a bike we would only ride on occasion. Hope Jeanne is OK.
    Best regards,
    Ed and Pat
    the Snot Rocket
    Quote Originally Posted by PMK View Post
    I watched some portions of the Iceman 2014 video you did. Neat stuff. Seeing the conditions of the short singletrack sections and how wet and muddy the long doubletracks were, the bike you chose was no doubt bringing a gun to a gun fight tandem wise.

    I thought I noticed in the video that there were a number of either 29's with big tires or fat bikes, could not tell for certain on account of the camera angles.

    I watched various sections of the video and pretty much skipped around. The portion from about 55 minutes until the bike stalled from mud on the chain was pretty cool and seemed almost typical tandem. Able to hold your own in most open single track, but if the terrain opens up a good tandem team can let it run. The DH muddy road section showed the tandems ability to open it up, sadly though, once it heads back up those pesky singles get hungry.

    The single fatbikes I have ridden were owned by others and ran soft tire pressures. Care to share some additional info about the setup, including tire pressures. The tires you ran during the race seemed a good choice, and I agree that that wide tire would have been a great choice in the wet conditions.

    Currently we have no intentions to go fat tire tandem. Our ECDM in 26 does quite well and provides lively handling for the technical stuff we ride. Sadly the ECDM is not seeing much use on account of stoker injuries, but maybe a big fat squishy tire bike could be fun to play on.

    Awesome results on the race.

    PK

  40. #40
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    Yeah, there were a lot of sections with the tandem we were really able to open it up. The biggest issue for us was the drivetrain skipping and preventing us from laying down as much power as we wanted. The uphills were the worst in this regard. From pre-riding we found we could climb as well as we would on our singles mostly due to the fact we could get out of the saddle and really hammer without worrying about losing traction with the rear wheel. On the flats and downhills we didn't need to put out as many watts and the bike would just GOOOOO! That allowed us to really get past a ton of singles without the drivetrain protesting too much.

    There was a mix of 29ers and fat bikes around us during the race. They start people by wave based on previous/anticipated placing overall. That means there are a ton of other divisions racing together including fat bike.

    We ran Husker Du tires on 100mm Clownshoe rims. We had 17psi front and rear. That was a low as we could run without having any fatal rim strikes. Overall it felt super good based on the conditions as well as during our pre-ride of the course (in dry conditions) the week before. The HD clears mud well but still rolls fast. I wouldn't have wanted to go with any other tire for that race.

    The big advantage I see to the fat bike tandem for most people is that it is fun to ride and doesn't require nearly as much skill to ride. It just rolls through/over stuff and is very forgiving. You don't really need to think about traction until you get going mach speeds. Even when you start to drift it, the contact patch is so huge you can generally keep your center of gravity over the contact patch (just like a single fat bike).

  41. #41
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    Looking for tandem fatbike builder

    Ken, do you anticipate putting a suspension fork on the bike at some point?

  42. #42
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    Hard to say but most likely we will not. I think the biggest variable is finding a fork that would fit the tires and hold up to tandem stresses. The Bluto would be scary. A tandem rated fat bike fork is a niche of a niche so I doubt there will be anything commercially available soon. That said, I did start thinking about CNC code to machine new crowns and braces for our ATC fork.

    I am not is a big rush to find a solution. Our local trails in the Midwest are pretty smooth and we plan to do a lot of beach and snow riding where a suspension fork doesn't off many advantages.

  43. #43
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    Tandemnut, a few questions for you...
    1) I noticed on your Ventana build, you spec'd Surly Unholy Rolling D's for rims. Any reason for these over, say, a Sunringle MuleFüt or Holy Rolling Daryl's?
    2) What hubs will you use? Will 'standard' fat bike hubs (i.e. Salsa, Surly, I9, etc.) be up to the task on a Tandem Fat Bike?
    3) You also spec a steel fork. What about a Salsa Beargrease (or Bearpaw) aluminum fork? Rockshox Bluto?

  44. #44
    MTB Tandem Nut
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacons View Post
    Tandemnut, a few questions for you...
    1) I noticed on your Ventana build, you spec'd Surly Unholy Rolling D's for rims. Any reason for these over, say, a Sunringle MuleFüt or Holy Rolling Daryl's?
    2) What hubs will you use? Will 'standard' fat bike hubs (i.e. Salsa, Surly, I9, etc.) be up to the task on a Tandem Fat Bike?
    3) You also spec a steel fork. What about a Salsa Beargrease (or Bearpaw) aluminum fork? Rockshox Bluto?
    1. My assumption is that the Unholy's would be stronger for the same extrusion than the Holys. Also, the Unholy is available in 36 spoke (but are backordered until February or March). Haven't seen the Mulefut in person yet, but have some on the way to check out. The cutouts are for weight savings, but also weaken the rim and reduce stiffness. That's not an issue with a single fat bike, but I am not sure under tandem loads and stresses, and would prefer to be safe.

    2. Rohloff is preferred, but for non-internally-geared hub applications, we will start with White Industries. Their cassette body is closest to one that has worked with reasonable success on tandems in the past. Hope doesn't like the idea of their fat hub on a tandem. Salsa probably isn't up to it either, since their standard hub isn't. I9 might work, depending on cassette type; individual-cog cassettes will notch the alloy cassette body on I9 hubs, but carrier-types like the newer 10- and 11 speed might not. I9 may be the high-end option, as I am sure Chris King will eventually be.

    3. Salsa informs me that none of their fat bike forks are suitable for tandem use. Even unofficially... We're working on potential solutions now; one customer has spec'd the Bluto on theirs, another is also fine with it, but I'd like to have a beefier option. We have a few possibilities in the works.

    As with all things off-road tandem, we have to pick and choose from old and new technology (relatively speaking wrt fat bikes, of course) to assemble something that will work. And by work, I mean long-term, not just a race, or a season. We're in business to build tandems that last after the new has worn off.
    MTB Tandems Inc.
    678-445-0711
    www.MTBTandems.com

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by TandemNut View Post
    They do make one now for both 145mm and 135mm. I'm sure they'd sell you one.
    Thanks. When I called this spring they told me over the phone that they didn't make one and wouldn't start offering it. I'm glad they changed their minds!
    2 wheels == True

  46. #46
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    TandemNut... thanks!

  47. #47
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    Looking for tandem fatbike builder

    I wonder if a Lefty Supermax might work for lighter tandem teams.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

  48. #48
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    TandemNut,
    How about some frame questions?
    I see on your website that the frame will take 4" tires on 80mm rims. Will the 190mm frame take 5" tires on 100mm rims?
    Is there a 197mm thru-axle option? I don't see that mentioned.

  49. #49
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    Hey Tom. This is Leland at Santana. I just saw this thread and Tim (who's looking over my should) recognized your name. The good news is we made some geometry changes and I got to ride the new version yesterday and had a blast. It was myself and my 17yo old room mate who's also a pro DH racer and we tore it up! Jumps, singletrack, sand, huge brake slides through the baseball diamond. The funniest part was when we realized we could get a bouncing pedal rhythm going and had the bike bouncing 6"off the ground with each stroke. Now we just have to figure out how to make it at an affordable enough price to sell.
    Keep the Country country.

  50. #50
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    Mine. Dos Pugsley.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Looking for tandem fatbike builder-image.jpg  


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