[Yak] tandem brakes
John S. Allen
jsallen at bikexprt.com
Fri Sep 12 07:39:35 CDT 2008
At 09:27 PM 9/11/2008, Harvey Sachs wrote:
Good advice, Harvey. A few more pointers:
>Rim brakes alone can overheat with tandem loads, and some folks
>claim to have blown tires on mountain grades as a result. Thus, two
>calipers on the same rim is not advised. We have gotten a 70s disk
>hot enough to (a) warp a bit and (b) scorch the paper label pretty
>completely. I've seen a Phil Wood disk (discontinued quite a while
>ago) that was rather charred.
This is real, not only a claim. Sheldon Brown and his wife blew a
tire with only 400 feet of descent, on a big-wheel tandem. Inner-tube
patch cement can melt, too. David Gordon Wilson had both his tires go
flat on a mountain descent on a solo bike. The problem is worse with
the smaller heat-dissipating area of small wheels. Wider rims
alleviate that problem somewhat.
>We set up our tandems with the left hand working the front rim
>brake, and the right hand getting the rear rim when in the normal
>riding position. Our tandems have always had drops, and the rear hub
>brake is controlled by a third lever, on the lower drop. Ergo, can't
>use both rear brakes at once; can't reach them.
And I operate my drum brake with an old friction-type shift lever
(bar-end shifter or thumbshifter) -- which lets me set the brake for
drag on a long descent, or as a parking brake.
Another option which is convenient, but not highly advisable: giving
control of this brake to the stoker. If the captain decides to sprint
across an intersection ahead of a gap in traffic, while the stoker
decides to stop...
John S. Allen
Regional Director for New York and New England, League of American Bicyclists
League Cycling Instructor #77-C and Member of the League's Education Committee
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