Preparing a Tandem Bicycle for the Andes and Amazon 1

What Tibet can do to a cassette body

Rebuilding a tandem bicycle for a South American tour

I am beginning to dismantle Zippy, our 40,000 mile world touring tandem, in preparation for our next self supported tour, this time South America. Before each tour, I completely dismantle Zippy for three reasons: to find our which parts need replacing so I can order them and fix the worn parts, catch any impending failures of frame, rims or drive-train, and to re-familiarize myself with every part. Since many of the places we tour are hundreds,sometimes over a thousand, miles from a proper bike shop, I have to be able to fix pretty much anything.  Anyone who owns a tandem will tell you tandems need more attention than single bikes; I might have to rebuild the hub somewhere in the high Andes, or the middle of the Amazon basin, while being munched on by ants and mosquitoes and critters we’ve never seen before.

Next lesson; rebuilding the innards of a cassette hub

I will probably not replace this cassette body; it has quite a few thousand miles on it in Asia, and if the hub fails, it won’t be here, but in the internal workings. The next post will show these parts, and tell how you can rebuild your own, on the road.

Mark July on your calendar for the beginning of our tour. It will include the Andes, and the Amazon basin, but water and whatever dirt roads we find appealing. You can click on the RSS feed to get a notification of posts.

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