Sunday, October 18, 2009

little tandem

I recently came into possession of a small-wheeled tandem bike. I think it was made by Miyata, as it's called the "Miyarenter" (perhaps it was designed for use by bike rental outfits?). If so, then it joins my little tilting trike as yet another "perhaps made by Miyata".

Those twin, umm, top tubes give it a nice swoopy look, no? The bottom/ down tubes curve up to become the seat tubes, a design also used by those old cheap Euro folding bikes from the 70's, like this one:

Hey, it's yellow too. :)

The tandem currently has only one gear, but there are a few cable guide braze-ones on the rear-most chainstay that indicate it may have sported either derailer gears or an internal-gear hub.

The gearing is rather low, which I guess is fine for when it's carrying the weight of two people. Though I frankly don't know how much those typical crappy 20" tires, holding only about 40psi of air, would cope with two people. At least not two large people. If I was going to seriously use this thing I'd swap in some Schwalbe Big Apples or similar, since those can take the weight and also give a nice cushioned ride (I use the Apples on the cargo trike). Of course, like some of the other interesting machines I have it's a bit small for me...

Oh, and if you look at the rear wheel its hub has what looks like a rotor for a disc brake! I'll need to get a better photo of that, after I try to hook up an old Shimano disc brake unit we had lying around at the re-Cycles shop. Not that this tandem really needs a disc brake (nor the extra weight of one); just that it would be way cool to actually find a use for this old brake.

Another idea I had was to turn this thing into a poor man's Xtracycle. I could use the rear seat tube and some clamps and fashion some sort of way to carry loads on the rear half. Y'know, for those trips that don't require the big cargo trike... Hmm...