If you take the name of a famous Italian Renaissance artist and armchair engineer/visionary way ahead of his time for your bicycle company, you’d better be able to back up your own technical wizardry and product aesthetics. Da Vinci Tandems hits the mark on both counts.
Da Vinci focuses solely on tandem bicycles and their claim to innovation is their patented Independent Coasting System. The ICS lets a rider coast independently of their partner, which is a huge advantage for tandem cycling. Just as it’s rare to have two riders of the same size (particularly husband and wife teams), it’s even rarer to have both tandem partners at the same fitness level. The ICS, exclusive to da Vinci tandems, allows for these inevitable differences in cycling ability.
Speaking of differences in cycling fitness, e-bikes have taken the industry by storm, and they provide a more pleasurable cycling experience for older cyclists or for those recovering from injuries. Love them or loathe them, e-bikes are here to stay, and da Vinci has entered the marketplace with their Tailwind tandems, available in road or mountain iterations. The Tailwind e-bikes use the Shimano Steps E8000 motor, powerful enough to level any mountain, but still light at only 6.2 pounds. And as with all da Vinci tandems, the Tailwind uses the ICS.
While the accommodation to different riders’ fitness levels and styles is the chief advantage of da Vinci’s ICS, there are several other significant mechanical dividends. The ICS uses an intermediate driveshaft placed six inches in front of the rear bottom bracket. Because both stoker and pilot are adding energy to this driveshaft, chainrings that are about half the normal size are used. This means faster, easier front shifting and with four chainrings and eight rear sprockets, an amazing gear range from 18 to 140 gear-inches is available. Other bonuses are higher ground clearance, stronger and lighter chainrings, and less chain wear from shifting.
Da Vinci offers tandems for road, mountain and gravel cycling. Mountain versions are available with front or full suspension, and da Vinci uses a full palette of frame materials to construct their two wheeled masterpieces: tandems are available in steel, aluminum, titanium and carbon fiber. All frame materials except aluminum can incorporate S&S couplers, which make traveling with a tandem much easier, and in many cases, even possible.
And just as the brand’s namesake Leonardo da Vinci painted many of his masterpieces on commission from patrons, you can commission your own custom tandem from the Denver-based builder. Whether selected from the line-up of standard offerings or uniquely conceived as a custom, all da Vinci tandems are handbuilt.