Jan 23.17 – Andrea and Andrew’s custom-built tandem 

This bike was, as you might have deduced, built for a couple. The customer wanted a clean modern build, but with some noticeable nods to the vintage tandems of days gone by. All the inspiration was around seafront rides and picnics, with lots of images conjured up of sun-bleached cornfields and checkered blankets.

The other big requirement was that it could be packed down into the car and for storage, and if you look carefully you’ll notice that the frame actually features a silver S&S coupler on both the top tube (behind the first seat) and on the tube connecting both sets of cranks. These couplers allow you to ‘break’ the bike so it can be folded up and put in the boot (or indeed, so that it can be stored at home without taking up too much space).

The elegant, cast crown on the custom fork and the side-mounted stays give the bike the retro appeal that they were after, while the serene blue paint for the frame perfectly evokes all things seaside and sunshine.

We built the bike with 26″ wheels and drum brakes for low maintenance, dependable braking. The rear hub is a Sturmey Archer three-speed, which again should give fantastic long-term reliability.

We finished this build just in time for it to be placed under the tree by Andrew as an extra big surprise for Andrea on Christmas morning. Hopefully with loads of riding ahead in 2017 it should be the gift that keeps on giving.