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Peugeot Tandems

Restoring Maintaining and Updating The Peugeot Tandem
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Let us restore your Tandem to its former glory or modernise it to your own specifications

 

Tandems, especially old ones are a bit tricky even for experienced DIY cyclists. We have the specialist knowledge, skills and extensive contacts in the Classic and Vintage cycle community to restore your tired tandem or even build you a brand new one on a classic frame! see Thoroughly Modern Peugeot  We have specialist knowledge of Peugeots and French bicycles in general, such as Motobecane, LeJeune and MBK, but are great fans of vintage British bikes too, having Raleigh, Viking and Claud Butler bikes in our own fleet. We are pretty good with Moultons too, having recently restored 2 classic F frame models. (see Recent Restorations). So send us your tandem or solo bike and we will restore it to its former glory or give it a brand new life.


If you need parts that will fit and work properly with your Peugeot tandem, we can supply parts that we have tried and tested on our own tandems (see How we can Help). What are you waiting for? Contact us now!

 

The Peugeot Tandem History


The Peugeot Tandem was manufactured in the 1970s and 80s by Peugeot Cycles in France. Many thousands were made and probably more were sold than any other make of tandem. Although it was affordable it used high quality components - all made in France. lightweight for an "off-the-shelf" mass produced tandem it was (and is) a serious machine suitable for cycle touring rather than a just "fun" tandem for hiring out to tourists or going to the pub. It's French heritage is its Achilles heel however as French bikes of this period were built to now obsolete French standards which meant that dimensions and screwthreads of various components are different from modern bicycles and are hard to find or unobtainable. The objective of this website is to share information to help get around these problems so that these fine machines can be kept on the road, restored or modernised.

NEWS!
 
Check Out Our New Shop
Lots of goodies for your tandem on our eBay shop

Derailleurs
We are now recommending the Sun Tour SunXCD derailleurs for the Peugeot Tandem. These are "old school" in design and work perfectly as a direct replacement for the original Simplex mechs which fall apart due to the plastic decomposing. They are really high quality and off all metal construction so will not wear out in a few years. The front mech will cope with most (double) ring combinations and the rear will cope with up to 10 speed and large rings up to 34 teeth.
You can find them here 

Ringing the Changes
Several customers have been swapping the chain rings for lower gearing and asking if the original Peugeot front mech will still work. The answer isn't black and white. Changing the sizes of rings may reduce performance, or increase the frequency of the chain derailing when changing ratios. The original mech was specified for 52/42 teeth. It depends on how much lower you want to go. 48/38 would be OK and perhaps 46/36. Much smaller than a 46 front ring will mean that you will not be able get the "cage" close enough to the large ring without touching the chain stay. Too small an inner ring, may mean that  the chain will scrape along the bottom of the cage on the smaller rear cogs. You can stretch the tooth difference beyond 10 teeth, but 20 is too many.
If upgrading to a modern front changer, there are a couple of things to consider. Modern mechs are made for specific chain ring sizes. MTB mechs are for 48/38/28 or 42/32/22 triples, so it is best to stay within these parameters. If you want higher gearing, road front mechs are made for larger rings: "compact doubles" typically 50-53 outer rings with a 16 teeth difference or for triples with a 20 teeth difference and a minimum of 10 teeth outer to middle. Please note that if you are using indexed shifters that "road" and "MTB" shifters are not cross compatible.
The second point to make, is that if you are using the original Stronglight 49D or TA Cyclotouriste chainsets, the cages of modern front mechs will catch on the crank arm, when on the big ring. This is not usually a problem with friction shifters as, once you have made the change, you can back off the shifter a little so it doesn't touch, with indexed shifters, it is more fiddly.
 
None of this means that you can't ring the changes or that" illegal" combinations won't work on your bike, but you need to be prepared to experiment. If you are not bothered about originality then, perhaps the easiest solution is to buy a new square taper chainset and the front mech to go with it, then you know it will work.
 
What's Stopping You?
We have received a couple of emails about brakes recently. In particular about the necessity for the rear drum "drag brake" . First point is that in the wet, chrome rims are never going to stop you very well, so the first upgrade is to get the wheels rebuilt with alloy rims. While you are at it, fit a rear  hub with a more effective hub brake. There are a couple available. Sachs do one. It is only small but seems to work quite well. It only takes a screw-on freewheel though. The one we fit is the Sturmey Archer X-RD or X-RDC. The former is for screw-on freewheel and the latter for the modern cassette sprockets.
 
The easiest upgrade to the rim brakes is to fit better quality brake blocks. Koolstops are the best, or Clarkes a close second.
 
Why bother with a hub brake at all? On long descents the rim brakes can overheat and in extreme circumstances this can lead to a burst tyre, which is the last thing you want on a high speed descent. Not such a problem in the UK where hills tend to be shorter, but I have heard of at least one occasion where this has happened (in Sussex!). The hub brake dissipates heat very effectively and while it may not be as sharp a stopper as the cantilever brakes, it will scrub off speed efficiently.
 
 
 
Cantilever Brakes Project

Only one set left!
 


Replacement brakes for your tandem in mirror finish Stainless Steel so they will be stiffer and give a firmer "feel". Price is £100 GBP for 2 pairs i.e a complete bike set, complete with brake blocks, straddle cables and bridles. There are only 20 bike sets in the first batch and all but one have already been sold. If you want  some let me know NOW! We will be getting another batch made but they will probably not be ready before June  Contact Us


Stripped the threads on your crank arms? - We can fix them!
The Stronglight 49D and TA Cyclotouriste chainsets fitted to Peugeot Tandems have unique thread sizes for the crank extractor. The TA is 23mm and the Stronglight 49D 23.35mm. Most bike shops do not have the correct tool, but we can supply them.

If the threads are damaged and you can't remove the cranks, email me and I will give you some tips. Then send us the damaged crank arms for repair. We have invested in a special tool to re-thread damaged cranks to a larger size. The repair will come with self extracting bolts, or you can buy a workshop extractor.

Facebook Page

We now have a FaceBook page 

 
This is where all our news will appear first. Would love you to like it!
 
 
Bespoked 2015 - Update
We will be there, but not exhibiting
This has moved back to Bristol at Brunel's Old Station (next to the modern railway station)
 
 
New Eccentric Bolts now available!
The original eccentric bolts tend to bend and are difficult to tighten up, as you cannot get a socket or ring spanner on them. I have had designed and manufactured stainless steel replacements with a special long nut that you can tighten to the correct torque with a socket spanner: Sold Out - more on the way.
 
 
 
£30 per pair incl. postage to UK & Europe
 
Lily's first ride
Glyn and Ann Jones from Cheshire sent their 1977 Peugeot Tandem to be "fixed up" and ended up with a total restoration. Here they are on their first ride out. Funny how our tandems always seem to by pictured by the waterside.
 
 
Gerty Rides again!!
Craig Breakey from Hyde sent us his eBay purchase a Peugeot Tandem called  "Gerty". Although she rode well she was a liitle past her best and was built up using a selection of random components. A few weeks here in Dorset has brought about an amazing transformation from ugly duckling to dazzling white swan. Here she is against a breathtaking backdrop. A larger photo is available in the gallery.
 
 
TA Cyclotouriste chainring availability - Update
 
We can now get 44 teeth chain rings from Velo Orange. The larger chain rings will last much longer than the original 32 teeth ones. £45 each.

These chainrings haven't been made for a while, but there are diminishing stocks. They are of legendary quality and last much much longer than the modern stuff which only seem to last a year or two. The bad news is that small single chainrings used for the left hand timing chain on tandems are now gone. Outer rings for double/triple setups can be used, but they start at 42 teeth. So if you want to keep your Peugeot Tandem original, please change the left hand chain regularly so that the teeth don't get damaged!
 
Going Dutch
Pip and Pippa Martin from Wiltshire have just completed a 10 day tour of Holland on their newly restored Peugeot Tandem "Speedwell". Speedwell had left the workshop just a few days before the tour and Pip & Pippa only had a few days to train for the ride before their holiday. Speedwell had been previously laid up in their garage for about 20 years, so they were well out of practice. Congratulations!
 
 
 
The Upgrade Programme
The Peugeot Tandem is a great ride; very versatile with good load carrying capacity and predictable handling. We bought ours new in 1980 and were thrilled with it. We love our tandem and will never sell it. We want to keep using it, but due to its French heritage and age, some parts are becoming difficult to find. We decided to upgrade ours to use modern freely available components, so that we can pass it down to our kids and it will still be maintainable. On this site I will freely share information so that you may do the same.
 
 
Contact
Please contact me with any questions or information mike@peugeottandem.co.uk
 
 
 
SAFETY WARNINGS
 
Tyres and Rims
It has come to my attention that there are problems with fitting some modern tyres to the original Rigida Chrolux rims. Many modern tyres. in particular Schwalbe, are marked "only for hooked rims". These tyres are not reliable on older rims with rolled edges and tend to blow off the rims with high pressures and roll off with lower pressures. Obviously this could result in a very serious accident should it happen on the move. The maximum pressure for the original rims is 60PSI and they should be fitted with traditional designs of tyre. The Michelin World Tour 700 x 35C, which was original equipment is still widely available and is cheap at approx £12. I can not recommend any other tyres with the original rims.
 
Chainring Bolts
We have experienced a couple of instances of chainring bolts coming loose, weeks or months after installation, so it is worth while making this one of your pre-flight checks.
 
About this site
This site is free service to help other Peugeot Tandem owners or those in the cycle trade who need technical information about Peugeot Tandems. If you have any additional information or have spotted any errors, please email me mike@peugeottandem.co.uk
I am assuming that you are familiar with bicycle mechanics and terminology and are equipped to carry our normal bicycle maintenance tasks.