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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011

    Long stoker top tubes

    We had our current tandem built with a 31.5" stoker top tube (it is a custom built Curtlo). This allowed my wife to have her normal riding position. I have never felt that there was a significant downside to this. The bike is a little over 2" longer in wheelbase, but we ride a lot of switchbacks and do fine with them. It is very rare for a tandem to be built this way, Am I missing something? We are looking to sell this bike and probably get an E.C.D.M. Sherwood said he would build one with the long tubes as a semi custom but he had only built one like that in the past.
    People on this forum have a lot of experience, is there something I should take in to consideration.
    p.s. I am 5'10' and she is 5'8".

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    We have a stock geo 17/16 S&S ECdM, stoker's 5'8", and haven't had an issue with stoker positioning. Our Medium Burley Duet, on the other hand, could definitely use a couple inches added to the stoker cockpit.

    If you already have off-road experience with the longer stoker cockpit, can't see any reason not to go that way on your next bike. Inches are inches (except when they're centimeters).

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    The longer stoker TT sounds appropriate to me considering the height of the stoker. What I did with our custom hard tail was to make the captain seat tube steeper (74 deg) and kept the stoker seat tube at 72 deg to open up the cockpit a bit for the stoker. This works well for us since I have the captain's seat rails pushed all the way forward on the ECDM and she likes the slack stoker seat angle. To maintain the captain's reach I had to lengthen the captain TT, so this does not reduce the wheelbase. However, it does push the center of mass back slightly which is good when the captain weighs more than the stoker. Working with a frame drawing in bikeCAD you can play with the dimensions to see how one dimension effects the others.
    2 wheels == True

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    The steeper seat angle seems like a reasonable solution. It won't work for me because I have a bone spur in my ankle that forces me to run my seat way back. It doesn't allow flexing the ankle without rubbing on tendon. 72 degree seat angle works well for me.
    My wife is using a shorter reach on her current single bike (Juliana Joplin), so I will have to re-figure how long of a top tube she will really need.

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