Maybe it’s just us but isn’t there something that seems wholesome and fun about owning a tandem bike? Wait, hear us out. If you are lucky enough to sit in the back, you miss all that wind and can enjoy the ride — no drag. Plus, if you are the weaker rider, there is no fuss about holding the other person back. And since the weather is getting warmer, there really is no reason not to head outdoors and get a little wind in your hair and maybe a little vitamin D.
We get it, we know that tandem bikes are not as popular as single-seat bicycles, but tandem bikes have been holding strong since their invention in the late 1800s. Before you whip out a credit card, know that it can be a big purchase. Also, essential to know is that in general, the person sitting in front is responsible for steering and controlling the bike, but they also get a better view. So, the person who has the best biking skills should sit in front. Then there is the person in the back, AKA the one pedaling the most. Now that person doesn’t have the hassle of keeping the bike straight, but they do have to keep those legs going while the person in front of them is taking in the scenery. But no matter what position you hold on the bike just make sure you are doing so with a proper bike helmet on your head.
Here are some of our favorite tandem bikes.
1. Schwinn Twinn Classic Tandem Adult Beach Cruiser
Schwinn was founded in 1895, and it has garnered a few accolades since then. In 1896, cyclist Major Taylor rode a Schwinn to become the first world champion, African-American professional cyclist. In 1941, Alfred Letourner set the speed record for the fastest mile on a Schwinn Paramount bicycle. In 1982, the BMX craze led to the Predator and subsequently the Company’s official BMX Factory team. Four years after the company launched, so did its first tandem bike and they have been innovating and upgrading them since. The modern Schwinn Twinn Classic Tandem Beach Cruiser with its 21-speed trigger shifters and extended gear range provides a smooth ride. Its classic lines are a throwback to Schwinn’s Tank Cruisers.
2. Kulana Lua Tandem Cruiser Bike
Another bike that is made for a perfectly beachy day is the Kulana Lua Tandem Cruiser Bike. It has 26-inch wheels and is built for people between 5’4″ to 6’2″ in height. The single-speed drivetrain makes it a good option for newbies, while the handlebars allow for a comfortable ride.
3. Electra Super Deluxe Tandem 7i
If you need a pop of color in your life to melt away the drab winter blues, hop on the Electra Super Deluxe Tandem 7i. Its lightweight aluminum frame makes it easy to roll around on. It includes an internal 7-speed gearing system and front and rear roller brakes for easier braking. Can’t you just picture yourself on a boardwalk with this thing?
4. Co-Motion, BlueBird
This handmade steel model from Co-Motion makes riding fun. It produced in Oregon of handmade steel and 700c aluminum wheels. It has 10-speed Dual Shimano Deore components ( 44/32t cranks with 11-34t cassette), disc brakes and 44/32r chainrings, all designed with the rider in mind. The slim design of the wheels will give your tandem bike the look of a racing cycle.
5. Salsa Cycle Powderkeg
For those who are serious about biking and want to do so as a twosome, this is the bike you can test your off-road skills with, so maybe wear elbow and knee pads. Powderkeg has a tandem mountain bike that you can get on and get gnarly. The wheelbase offers stability and lots of clearance (to avoid mud), Shimano SLX 10-speed 11-36 cassette, and SRAM BB7 mechanical disc brakes. You can run single-speed or geared depending on your mood. You can buy just the frame or the complete. Whether you decide to pilot this thing or hang on as a stoker, be ready for an adventure. Don’t forget your mountain bike helmet!
6. Santana, Synergy
We admit that this bike is on the pricier side, but it has plenty of bells and whistles to justify that price. Plus, it really is made for those who know that they love to bike and want to do so as a twosome. The Santana, Synergy bike is designed using a seamless double-butted lightweight titanium tube set designed for tandem use. And though it is lightweight, it promises to offer superb handling and, according to the manufacturer, “better power transmission and at a lighter weight than the competition’s straight gauge frame.” Additionally, it features bi-laminate tubing, co-molded carbon/titanium down and bottom tubes. The base price offers riders the standard build kit, an Ultegra 2×11 drivetrain, road caliper front brake and disc or road caliper rear brake.
7. Co-Motion, PeriScope Trident
If you are up for a little family fun —and who isn’t?—then try out this triple seat PeriScope Trident bike. It is an excellent way to introduce your kid to riding and help them build confidence before tackling a regular bicycle on their own. It comes with rack and fender mounts, optimized for 26″ wheels, zonally-butted cromoly tubing, 44mm head-tube, rack and fender mounts, dual disc brakes, Shimano 105 Kit and hand-built touring wheels.
8. Santana, Escape
Designed using Santana’s Scandium alloy with a double-butted, super oversize tube set is the eSCape. It has an open style frame, offers lateral stiffness while utilizing cranks that drop over half a pound. And while those things are proprietory, the bottom brackets, headset, stems, and seat posts are standard, making them easy to find and replace. The starting price comes with the reveal standard build kit and Ultegra 2×11 drivetrain in your choice of gearing from a mountain leveling 34/50 11-40 to a racy 39/53 11-28.