Author Topic: Circe Helios Duo Tandem  (Read 9009 times)

Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« on: August 02, 2012, 01:02:39 pm »
I feel it is time to review the tandem, since it is now a few months old. After some discussion at the shop, I decided to go for an Alfine 11, disk brakes, Shimano dynohub, Cyo front light and B and M rear light. As I wanted to use it for work, I got crank shorteners and long stoker bars and a Blackburn EX1 rack. The rack is specially reinforced to solve possible problems with the length of attachments to reach the low frame. At the same time I bought the half rack, which replaces the stoker seat if you want to use it as a load carrier or carry two bike seats, or a bike seat and panniers. The other thing I got is a thudbuster seatpost as a spare so that I can swap a child and adult stoker easily.

The whole set-up has been brilliant - I have now done over 1000 miles and had lots of fun! I ride it to work on my own. Lots of people tell me that i've lost someone ;D. I have ridden at work with a 3 (now 4) year old stoking and a 2 year old in a bike seat. I have ridden with just the bike seat and 2 year old. I have ridden with the 7 (now 8 ) year old stoking and either the 2 or 4 year old in the bike seat. I have met clarion at a train station and gone to collect a bike. We've taken it on the train to Yorkshire to go to Tiermat's to collect a bike for clarion and give lots of people in Yorkshire a go :D. I gave NSTN a lift to Brentford and someone shouted 'LESBIANS' at us! ;D

I haven't used the extra rack yet so I've got that to look forward to. The 4 year old tells random strangers that they need one. So do I! It's absolutely fab.

 :)
Quote from: Kim
^ This woman knows what she's talking about.

Oscar's dad

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2012, 08:41:01 am »
On the days when I walk from Liverpool Street station to the London office I sometimes see a dad taking his daughter to school on the back of a drop bar Circe.  They are normally going like bats from hell, carving their way through a sea of Brommies and Boris bikes.  They always make me smile.

This morning I saw another dad and daughter Crice crew on a flat bar machine.  The Circes are breeding - excellent  ;D

tiermat

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2012, 08:48:18 am »
I had an email from Circe on Friday saying about their new tandem, shall have to go and see if I can find the details, but it's a captain at the rear job with the stoker in a recumbent stance at the front.
I feel like Captain Kirk, on a brand new planet every day, a little like King Kong on top of the Empire State

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2012, 10:59:38 am »
Morpheus.  Rather like a Hase Pino and, er, that other one.  Worth a look.  They had a prototype in the office when we picked up the Helios.
Getting there...

Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2012, 07:54:09 pm »
I've stoked and piloted the Morpheus in the recumbent shop* in Edinburgh over half a dozen miles or so; not long enough for any Audaxy comfort/speed comment, but I think it's intended as an urban utility device anyway.

I've stoked on a Hase Pino and piloted an empty one, and I would say the Morpheus is the easier to handle unladen of the two, but the Pino is the one that doesn't grumble when you throw lots of watts into it as stoker.

For carting two people around I think it's initially easier to pilot when the stoker is recumbent, compared to the Helios; the problem of the stoker trying to use their mass to steer is minimised. Long term, I'd imagine pilot and stoker will get into synch so fast that isn't a issue, so the Helios wins as a tandem, unless your intended stoker has specific needs that make upright posture a no-no..

If we're talking cargo bike, the inverted pendulum voodoo is strong with the Morpheus. I've used a Bullit for a day and found it a pig to handle in motion when fully laden, but comparatively benign at a stop since the platform is shin-height. With the Morpheus, it's the opposite. It takes a bit of foresight or brute force to keep the load stable when starting off, but once you're going above sevenish mph, it/he/her damps the wobbles right down because they've got such a long moment.

 

Arellcat

  • Velonautte
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2013, 10:23:53 pm »
I've stoked and piloted the Morpheus in the recumbent shop* in Edinburgh...

And?  :o  The pregnant pause of that dramatically inserted asterisk demands a resolution!

I heard tell that Richard Loke, of Airnimal and Circe fame and late of Recumbent UK magazine, actually penned the Morpheus many years ago, before Hase had developed the Pino.

Butterfly, glad to hear the Helios tandem is working out well.  I see a bunch of them frequently doing the rounds in Edinburgh.

Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2013, 10:46:28 pm »
Ah yes. I didn't know what the local etiquette is on naming one's favoured local recumbent bike shop and forgot to write that sentence at the bottom.

LaidBack Bikes, for those who are curious yet inexplicably unable to Google the fact there's only one in the entire east half of the country.

Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2013, 04:08:25 pm »
This thread needs pictures and a price!!!

Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2013, 12:30:33 pm »
I've been running a Helios of very similar spec for the last week - although I splashed out on the lighting and got a SON Delux, which is "gawjus".   I also got a Brompton T bag for the front - very handy for getting large bits of school kit in and the bag goes on and off in no time.

4 1/2 year old stoker (small for his age) is only just big enough to stoke so he's getting broken in with weekend rides in quiet places at the moment.  For the school run he currently goes on a Bobike seat on mid rack - a very civilised way to travel.  On his old seat - a Co-Pilot Limo on a single bike, he was really cramped and he constantly kicked me in the legs  (his legs were too long for his feet to be strapped in).  Now he's got TONS of room and is much happier - so am I.

Cost was £2,600 without the bike seat, which hurt, but depends how you look at it.  For me the alternative was buying a car plus all the running costs, plus parking nightmares and a 45 minute trip in the morning instead of 20.  The roads we travel on just aren't suitable for kids on their own bike and I think tag-alongs are unstable - plus they're slow.  With the current set-up we're almost as fast as on a solo bike.  Plus we get lots of other benefits - my wife can be stoker (she has a gammy foot so struggles with a solo bike), I can carry loads and loads of gear on weekend rides with the rest of the family and I don't need to think about buying anything else for the school run at least until son decides tandems are too uncool.

I've done one or two mods - sawn 32mm (?!) off the ends of the handlebars, which made the handling a bit less frisky as well as making it easier to get in the work / home  bike sheds.  Different grips, toeclips on front removeable pedals, rough emery cloth on the back removable pedals.  Swapped saddle for my trusty Brooks.  The chainline is currently out by 8mm or so - Circe have offered to send me a different sprocket to sort this.
 
Pics follow (hopefully, this is first post).  As you can see, fits in a normal bike shed.  I've already  people saying what a good design it is.  I agree with 'em.  For my wants it's fab.


WP_001574 by dan.hopgood, on Flickr


WP_001563 by dan.hopgood, on Flickr


WP_001566 by dan.hopgood, on Flickr

iddu

  • Are we there yet?
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2013, 09:33:32 pm »
Interesting kiddicrank - DIY?
I'd offer you some moral support - but I have questionable morals.

CrinklyLion

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2013, 09:41:24 pm »
Ours got some festive customisations



in time for it's first proper shakedown ride on Saturday



I have a _splendid_ stoker :D

Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2013, 10:08:35 pm »
Interesting kiddicrank - DIY?

Actually, and not very surprisingly, they look like Circe ones.
Actually, it is rocket science.
 

iddu

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2013, 11:17:02 pm »
Interesting kiddicrank - DIY?

Actually, and not very surprisingly, they look like Circe ones.
Duh! [cv]a prufessional InterWebby nerdgeek for shekels[/cv]  :-[
I'd offer you some moral support - but I have questionable morals.

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2013, 10:38:08 am »
We have those crank shorteners, and they are fabulous. :thumbsup:
Getting there...

Charlotte

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2013, 11:35:57 am »
What's the red string for?
Commercial, Editorial and PR Photographer - www.charlottebarnes.co.uk

Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2013, 11:40:22 am »
Interesting kiddicrank - DIY?

The string was an experiment -  a sawn off broomhandle tied on as as a kiddie stoker footrest - definately DIY.  This was for the first ride in case there was an issue with young stoker wanting to take his feet off the pedals.  That wasn't a problem though, so that detail won't be used again.

Charlotte

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #16 on: December 09, 2013, 11:52:00 am »
Ahha, I was wondering!  Top skateboard grip-tape hack there, too!
Commercial, Editorial and PR Photographer - www.charlottebarnes.co.uk

Oscar's dad

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #17 on: December 09, 2013, 12:01:51 pm »
On the days when I walk from Liverpool Street station to the London office I sometimes see a dad taking his daughter to school on the back of a drop bar Circe.  They are normally going like bats from hell, carving their way through a sea of Brommies and Boris bikes.  They always make me smile.

This morning I saw another dad and daughter Crice crew on a flat bar machine.  The Circes are breeding - excellent  ;D

I still see these two ^^^ dad and kid school run crews.  They still make me smile  :thumbsup:

A week or so ago I saw the flat bar crew and the daughter stoker, I guess she's about 10 years old, had her guitar on her back rucsac stylee.

Around the same time I also saw a dad on a Hase Pino.  Stoking was a young lad with his feet dangling down being no help whatsoever  ;D.  On the back of the machine was a younger kid in a child seat.   The dad had a shiny silver Magic Hat TM

Kim

  • An appetite for the epic, but no real stamina
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2014, 01:24:27 pm »
This is as good a thread as any other.  Can someone let me know the overall tyre-to-tyre length of a Helios, so I can add it to my list for testing out some prototype dangly bike spaces.
Watching the TV without subtitles is like riding up a hill without using the gears :)

fboab

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Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2014, 01:27:36 pm »
This is as good a thread as any other.  Can someone let me know the overall tyre-to-tyre length of a Helios, so I can add it to my list for testing out some prototype dangly bike spaces.
As it's a tandem it's probably specifically excluded from travel on the new rolling stock. TOC generally just say 'No'.
TSS is not Total Sex Score, Chris!

Kim

  • An appetite for the epic, but no real stamina
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2014, 01:39:17 pm »
This is as good a thread as any other.  Can someone let me know the overall tyre-to-tyre length of a Helios, so I can add it to my list for testing out some prototype dangly bike spaces.
As it's a tandem it's probably specifically excluded from travel on the new rolling stock. TOC generally just say 'No'.

We (I'm not entirely sure who 'we' are, but it seems to be under the auspices of CTC somethingorother) are specifically trying to collect evidence to present against that sort of policy.  I'd like to push for policy that bans (picking number out of arse) "cycles of more than 2.1m overall length" rather than a blanket ban on unusual types of cycle that could otherwise fit.
Watching the TV without subtitles is like riding up a hill without using the gears :)

CrinklyLion

  • The one with devious, cake-pushing ways....
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2014, 04:49:49 pm »
I make it roughly 2.2m from the front of the tyre to the back of the mudguard. That's pretty rough measurement tho!

Kim

  • An appetite for the epic, but no real stamina
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #22 on: January 20, 2014, 04:58:20 pm »
I make it roughly 2.2m from the front of the tyre to the back of the mudguard. That's pretty rough measurement tho!

That'll do.  About the same as a longer recumbent, then, with a bit more potential for shortening through wheel removal.

We should have a traditional framed tandem to play with on the day.
Watching the TV without subtitles is like riding up a hill without using the gears :)

CrinklyLion

  • The one with devious, cake-pushing ways....
Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #23 on: January 20, 2014, 05:00:06 pm »
Only with a Responsible Adult to supervise and make sure I don't cock it up in my case.... ;)

Re: Circe Helios Duo Tandem
« Reply #24 on: March 22, 2014, 07:32:27 pm »
Yikes, two "offs" in a week.  Haven't come off for years.  First occasion I was solo and was stopped on the approach to a building site.  Front wheel sank into soft gravel with me straddling the bike.  I didn't notice, lost balance and went down crash - breaking the £90 front light and mw with cuts and bruises.   

Second time was more worrying- 5 year old in bike seat on the back- I was approaching T junction and my foot got snagged as I came out of toe clip.  I was OK but littl'n hit his head on the deck. 
Note to self:  Be very, very careful in future. 

Update June '14 - got compensated by the builders for the first off - as soft gravel shouldn't have been there.  Result.  Littl'n still loves the tandem and we're on it every school day in all weathers.  It's a great bike.