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Worlds fastest tandem bike

lazy person in the back
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I recently completed a 109 mile bike race in which i passed several tandem bike riders. The person up front pedals steers and shifts the bike while the person on the back simply pedals.

So the idea is simple and straight foward. Replace the handle bar in the back with a hand crank.

Antegrity, Nov 20 2007

Have them both steer Dual-control tandem
Just some HB cross-pollenation... [theleopard, Nov 21 2007]


       sp. 'rode'... or 'rowed', which yields a beautiful image... and possibly a whole other idea, involving well-flooded gutters and a good even camber.
pertinax, Nov 21 2007

       I have heard that your upper body tires much more quickly than your lower body. Besides, your legs are stronger anyway.
BJS, Nov 21 2007

       Good idea, though the first comment gave me a diffrent idea, have the back person row. Your idea is to get more power out of the back rider since they don't have to steer, but I think it would be hard to pedal and turn a hand crank simultaneously. If you spin the back rider around and have them pull a rowing handle couped to the drive through a freewheel, they can use leg and back muscles for power. Also it gives he back rider a better view, instead of the back of the drivers head. Though this would probably work better on a recubent bike, so both riders are down low.
MisterQED, Nov 21 2007

       With great power comes great responsibility.
4whom, Nov 21 2007

       The person on the back of a tandem is generally as close as possible to the person in front, to reduce drag. Putting them back far enough to be able to operate a hand crank is going to also add increased drag to the losses incurred by the weight and complexity of the drive.   

       Generally, if cyclists want to get the upper body involved, they stand up on the pedals and work the bike from side to side. Some folks can do that on a tandem. That's usually for uphills and sprints. For flat-land riding on a bike, the legs can often develop more power than the heart and lungs can keep up with. Adding arm cranks would just deprive the legs of oxygen.   

       As I've said before, there isn't much chance of anything truly original in bicycling. For two hundred years, racers have been looking for any edge, manufacturers have been looking for any gimmick, and basement bike-builders have been looking for any connection to reality. (Although there are some incredibly conservative folks in cycling.) Somebody has done this, or something quite close to it, Shirley. I've seen a single-rider racing bike with hand-cranks added, losing the race.   

       [Antegrity], congratulations on the 109 mile bike race. Especially for passing tandems--that isn't easy to do.
baconbrain, Nov 21 2007

       //As I've said before, there isn't much chance of anything truly original in bicycling//   

       Until something truely original comes along.
nomocrow, Nov 21 2007

       //With great power comes great responsibility//   

       One of my favourites. However I prefer:   

       With great power comes great irresponsibility.
Custardguts, Nov 21 2007

       With great power comes a large electricity bill.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 21 2007

       Tandems have been built where the rider that steers is on the back and the rider who only pedals (the "stoker") is on the front, facing backwards. The aerodynamics is better in this configuration and they tend to be faster.
webfishrune, Nov 23 2007

       I dont really recieve much of an uppper body workout when road biking. I do when I am mountain biking. Having the arms help out to rest those tired legs, I think would offer a great advantage to a tandem team. As far as an increase in drag is concerned, I would have to see how far the person in the rear would get pushed out. I wouldnt imagine it being very far, I dont think that there would have to be any major modifications to the bike frame, just to the drive train.
Antegrity, Nov 25 2007


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