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Vintage Santana tandem: mudguards and rack mounting ideas?

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Vintage Santana tandem: mudguards and rack mounting ideas?

Old 05-08-19, 01:46 AM
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VictorYlap
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Vintage Santana tandem: mudguards and rack mounting ideas?

I have recently managed to score a Santana tandem off craigslist that fits both me and my stocker (most frames on the used market are far too large). It is probably from 1988-1990, made from Columbus tubing, with Suntour XCE indexed downtube shifters, 48-spoke Suzue hubs, etc, everything in great condition, even the indexed shifting worked perfectly after sitting in the seller's garage for who knows how long. Not sure about the particular model - Arriva, perhaps? I've sent an email to Santana but have yet to hear back from them.
I'm going to refrain from any upgrades (except for the saddles and pedals) until the drivetrain starts to wear off, so I have just disassembled, lubed and re-assembled everything.

Now, the question is if there is a manufacturer-intended way to mount the mudguards and the racks. I mean, this is clearly not a racing bike, so they should have figured that the riders would like to put on some extra gear.

Of course there are always clamps or ziptie-mounted contraptions like SKS Raceblade, which I have on my road bike and really like, but they will look totally out of place on a vintage steel bike.
There are eyelets near the rear wheel dropouts, and there is a threaded hole on the back of the fork, but that's it. No mount on seatstays, near brakes or at the bottom bracket. I could use a set of QR-to-eyelets adapters (like from Velo Orange or Axiom) and get the front mudguard properly mounted, but have no idea what to do with the rear one.

As for the rack, I think there used to be eyelet-and-cantilever-posts MTB racks which can be used in the rear, but I'm more interested in the front rack since the rear wheel is already overloaded on a tandem. One custom rack builder I've contacted suggested drilling the front fork (currently the threaded hole in the back of the fork doesn't go all the way through), but I'm not sure if it's a good idea.

Turns out I cannot enclose images or post URLs so far. Hopefully I will be able somewhere later in this thread.
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Old 05-08-19, 01:44 PM
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due ruote 
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Here is an old thread from the C&V forum with lots of excellent fenders advice.

https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-v...se-things.html

On the rear, is there no bridge on either the seat stays or chain stays? Generally something can be conjured if those are present. At least you have eyelets.

Re: front end - are there eyelets on the fork tips? If so you should be set for fenders.

I have mounted a front rack with single center mounting tab on an mtb by simply running the tab under the fork crown and bending it up to the rear bolt hole. Itís rock solid, has a large Wald basket on the rack and frequently gets overloaded with too many groceries.

Otoh, if this is a long term keeper and you want to go the custom route, drilling the front of the fork doesnít seem like a big deal to me.

Last edited by due ruote; 05-08-19 at 01:55 PM.
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Old 05-09-19, 12:43 PM
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Leisesturm
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I'm just wondering why the o.p. says the rear of a tandem "is already overloaded". That is not normally the case. Rather, the opposite. I also agree with @due ruote and don't think drilling the fork through is the worst idea ever since the back side is already drilled. Ask someone to link the pictures for you. They are worth their weight in insight.
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Old 05-10-19, 01:52 AM
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Originally Posted by due ruote View Post
Here is an old thread from the C&V forum with lots of excellent fenders advice.

On the rear, is there no bridge on either the seat stays or chain stays? Generally something can be conjured if those are present. At least you have eyelets.

Re: front end - are there eyelets on the fork tips? If so you should be set for fenders.

I have mounted a front rack with single center mounting tab on an mtb by simply running the tab under the fork crown and bending it up to the rear bolt hole. Itís rock solid, has a large Wald basket on the rack and frequently gets overloaded with too many groceries.

Otoh, if this is a long term keeper and you want to go the custom route, drilling the front of the fork doesnít seem like a big deal to me.
Thanks, I will look into that thread.
There are bridges near both seat stays and chain stays, but they don't have any threaded holes where fenders are usually attached. I could probably use something like a hose clamp, to wrap it around the bridge(s) and then mount the fender to it. I wonder what was behind the manufacturer's idea to add the rear droupout eyelets but skip all other mounting points; Santana seems to pay attention to every details so this must have been intentional.

Re front end: there are no eyelets, but I was going to get these adapters from VO when ordering the fenders from them: i.imgur com/bpYKGSC jpg (replace the spaces with dots).

I like the idea with running the tab under the fork crown. I thought about it, but have never seen it implemented. Good to know that it worked for you.

Oh, and here's the bike (overview pic): i.imgur com/XJUsMMs jpg

Re overloaded rear end: that's what I read in many topics regarding tandems, so I figured I'd start with the front rack. FWIW we are almost the same weight with my stocker, I might be like 10 lbs heavier.
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Old 05-10-19, 09:46 PM
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Originally Posted by VictorYlap View Post
Thanks, I will look into that thread.
There are bridges near both seat stays and chain stays, but they don't have any threaded holes where fenders are usually attached. I could probably use something like a hose clamp, to wrap it around the bridge(s) and then mount the fender to it. I wonder what was behind the manufacturer's idea to add the rear droupout eyelets but skip all other mounting points; Santana seems to pay attention to every details so this must have been intentional.

Re front end: there are no eyelets, but I was going to get these adapters from VO when ordering the fenders from them: i.imgur com/bpYKGSC jpg (replace the spaces with dots).

I like the idea with running the tab under the fork crown. I thought about it, but have never seen it implemented. Good to know that it worked for you.

Oh, and here's the bike (overview pic): i.imgur com/XJUsMMs jpg

Re overloaded rear end: that's what I read in many topics regarding tandems, so I figured I'd start with the front rack. FWIW we are almost the same weight with my stocker, I might be like 10 lbs heavier.
As long as you have the bridges, you can use p-clamps. Just drill through the fender and bolt to the p-clamp, using an aluminum spacer as needed to keep things straight and tidy.
Odd that the fork doesnít have eyelets. But there too p-clamps will work fine. If you canít find stainless ones, they can be ordered from McMaster Carr.
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Old 05-21-19, 09:06 PM
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Cool. That's a Santana Targa, identical to ours from 1989, including colour and size. We still have it as our backup. Beautiful joints and nice stiff ride. (Uncomfortable rear cockpit for stoker over longer rides though.) Your wheels are likely replacements of the Suntour hubs (36-hole!) that were OEM on ours.

First, even if not a "racing" bike (whatever that it is) it has a very short (and stiff) rear end. The rear tire comes much closer to the back of the seat tube than on the entry-level Arriva of the same vintage. The dealer said this was Santana's idea to make a bike that felt more like a racing single bike than the more relaxed Arriva. (The tandem market was much younger then... ) Especially in the small size, this made clearances really tight over and around the tires. Maximum tire size that would clear the chainstays was 25 mm....and if we broke a spoke the tire would hit the stay for sure. (That might be why the previous owner went to 48 spokes.)

We mounted front low-rider racks and a classic Blackburn single-mount, bolt-through-the-hole-in-the-brake-bridge rear rack for a series of self-supported NON-camping tours in the 1990s. For the front racks, we used U-bolts around the fork blades -- I think the racks came with them -- and I believe we must have used P-clips at the dropouts. (The fork has eyelets now but they might have been a later addition. The frame went through a SLEP (Service Life Extension Program) while we were putting off upgrading to a new, dream tandem until son had graduated from university.) The Suntour rear dropouts had eyelets. As with your bike, there was no hole in the bridge between the seat stays so I just drilled one to mount the rack. Racks that attach at a single point up top are more wiggly than the ones that clamp to both seat stays but the rack and pannier system was quite stable on long twisty descents in our western mountains and in New England. Remember, no camping gear, just hotel-type stuff. Fun times, hooked us on tandeming.

We never had much success fitting fenders on that bike. For our tours we decided to reduce complexity and not even try, just get a bit dirtier if it rained. Fenders make removing and reinstalling the rear wheel of a loaded tandem much more cumbersome because the racks and panniers are already impeding access. On the front, toe-to-tire clearance is short to begin with. To cut that clearance further with a fender would have required extra-careful handling of a loaded bike. Also, the wheel is so close to the fork crown that there is not enough room for a fender to pass between the tire and the crown. So you have to chop off the fender and butt the end up against the back side of the crown. It does work, but you have no fender out ahead of the fork, so you still get wet from ejected water being blown back at you. I eventually did drill that hole all the way through the fork crown to mount a rim brake, and then experimented some with fender fragments. One big benefit of a front fender with a good long mudflap is that it keeps the timing chain drier longer, and this keeps the stoker's feet drier, and she really appreciates that.

Ditto on the rear, no fenders. When the bike eventually went in to our frame shop, the simple tubular bridge was replaced with a proper fancy-single-bike brake bridge, positioned low enough to mount a short-reach rim brake. We accepted that there would now be for sure no fender clearance but what the clearance with the original bridge was I just don't remember. Attaching the end of the fender would be another challenge as there is no hole in the lower bridge either. Remember, every millimetre of fastening material you add there compromises tire clearance which is already tight.

So I would never say it can't be done, but mounting fenders on that old Targa will certainly challenge your ingenuity. You'll almost certainly have to mount them as cut segments being very careful to respect clearances.

Finally, sort of related to fenders: a generic problem with cantilever brakes on small bikes is that it is hard to get the rear brake adjusted properly because we don't have a lot of room back there to adjust the height of the straddle cable to get the mechanical advantage dialed in. The front canti worked fine but be careful to ensure the rear actually works. That was why we converted to rim brakes and they must be dual-pivot short-reach models in order to stop a tandem safely. It's kind of funny -- the main rationale for cantilever brakes is that they allow powerful braking without regard to where the rim is relative to the fork and bridges, so you can have big tires and ample fender clearance. So then Santana goes and puts them on a bike that has such tight wheel clearances that you don't in fact get that advantage. Better to have just mounted rim brakes and be done with it. Although to be fair, perhaps good dual-pivot brakes weren't widely available in the late 1980s? And the conventional wisdom then was that tandems had to have cantis.

Thanks for this little blast from the past. Santana didn't make very many Targas. Hope my experience with ours is useful to you.
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Old 05-28-19, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by conspiratemus1 View Post
Cool. That's a Santana Targa, identical to ours from 1989, including colour and size. We still have it as our backup. Beautiful joints and nice stiff ride. (Uncomfortable rear cockpit for stoker over longer rides though.) Your wheels are likely replacements of the Suntour hubs (36-hole!) that were OEM on ours.
<...>
Thanks for this little blast from the past. Santana didn't make very many Targas. Hope my experience with ours is useful to you.
Wow, thanks for such a detailed response! Out of curiosity, what makes a Targa different from a Sovereign? To me our bike looks identical to the Sovereigns of that era, but I have only seen them on pictures, not in the flesh. What did make the rear cockpit uncomfortable in your case? Was it the relatively short rear triangle? Because the cockpit itself doesn't feel particularly short for my friend (5'3"), we're actually looking for a longer or adjustable stem for her to make her fit a little shorter. We'll probably try a Suntour parallelogram seatpost to deal with the harshness in the rear seat.
FWIW I still haven't heard back from Santana (I've sent them an email asking if they could help me identify this bike), and I can't call them being in a very different time zone at the moment. Suzue hubs also seem to be common on Santanas, so I'm not sure if they're aftermarket. The drivetrain having so little wear makes me think that the original owners never used it a lot, let alone do upgrades.

The tire clearance is tight indeed. However, I could fit a 28 mm tire in the rear and I will try to put another one in the front. A fender will definitely not fit in the fork with a 28 mm tire, but in the worst case scenario I could use something like sks raceblades which do not go under the fork crown (see: www.bikeinn com/f/13662/136627342/sks-raceblade-pro-700x35mm.jpg).

Replacing the brakes was the first thing I had in mind when I got the bike, as I hate setting up cantilevers, but once done they actually work pretty good, so I decided to keep them as is.
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Old 05-29-19, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by VictorYlap View Post
Wow, thanks for such a detailed response! Out of curiosity, what makes a Targa different from a Sovereign? To me our bike looks identical to the Sovereigns of that era, ...

I think the Targa did use the same frame as a near-contemporary Sovereign. When we bought ours in 1990, our dealer told us that as of that year, Sovereigns were being made with aluminum frames (and fancier parts) as their flagship offering. (Certainly within a year or two of buying our Targa, which was from the 1989 production, we did see an aluminum Sovereign locally.) [**EDIT: This can't be a correct recollection. Bill Mc. himself says that Sovereigns went aluminum in 1993 and I found a T@H post from the guy who set him up with aluminum fabricating equipment who also says 1993. I apologize for mis-information. References available on request]. At a tandem rally in the early 2000s we saw a Sovereign up close whose frame did indeed look identical to our Targa and which the owners said was early-mid 1980s. Perhaps the left-over Columbus [Edit: or possibly Tange, but still top-drawer tubing for the time] steel tubing sets went into a bike positioned between Arriva and Sovereign so as not to compete directly with the revamped Sovereigns, which were, in 1990, much more expensive than what we paid for the previous-year Targa. The Targas were made for only a couple of years and I never saw one in a catalogue.


I don't know if the parts were the same as what would have been built onto a 1980s Sovereign. The rear wheel used a Suntour 7-speed freehub cassette. This was the early days of freehubs and the last-gasp days of Suntour. The freehub mounting pillar was force-fitted (not screwed) into the hub shell and became loose and sloppy within a year. Santana did replace it, with what I cannot now remember. We got good service from a Shimano 7-speed tandem cassette hub which is still in use on my winter-commute/gravel bike. Using the Suntour shifters in non-index mode, which I prefer anyway, at least with downtube shifters, we avoided incompatibility with the Shimano cassette. (We now run a double-ring crankset with 9-speed rear as part of the "SLEP" I alluded to previously but that is beyond the scope of your questions.)


Originally Posted by VictorYlap View Post
What did make the rear cockpit uncomfortable in your case? Was it the relatively short rear triangle? Because the cockpit itself doesn't feel particularly short for my friend (5'3"), we're actually looking for a longer or adjustable stem for her to make her fit a little shorter.

My stoker had two issues with the fit for her. It's not so much that she sits too close to me, although she does like the longer cockpit of our new tandem. Rather, more specifically, the stem positioned her handlebars too low. She had to lean too far forward to get her hands comfortably onto the dummy brake levers and there was no way, with the supplied stem, to raise the bars given the position of my seat post. At the same time, when she would stand up on the pedals, her knees would bump against the handlebars, meaning the bars were both too low and too far back. Available single-piece stoker stems, even if adjustable for length, weren't going to work because the bars needed to go higher quickly to clear her knees without going back too far in the process. But a stem that angled up steeply right from the junction with my seatpost wouldn't clear the back of my saddle.

So we got one of those cheap stems with an adjustable knuckle in it that allows you to vary the angle of the rise. They're intended for the handlebars of a comfort-style single bike with a threadless headset. Shimmed it to fit my seatpost and experimented with height and angle until we found a sweet spot for her bars. (I drew the whole thing out on paper first, taking accurate measurements so as to buy the right length of stem, which wasn't adjustable, only the angle was.) Then, after some test rides met with success, we replicated the position so determined with a more elegant solution illustrated in the photo. The stoker stem boom came from SJS Cycles in the U.K. https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/stems/th...g-black-120mm/ -- they come in a couple of lengths -- and the vertical piece is just whatever inexpensive threadless stem gives you the right height. You'll need to order a shim to make the Thorn stem fit your seatpost. Note in the photo that I'm using a zero-set-back seatpost and I have my saddle far enough forward that stoker's hands have room to grasp the flats of her now-higher bars without getting pinched by my buttocks. Every millimetre counts in getting fit optimized for the stoker's comfort and satisfaction and of course the solution has to be tailored to the stoker's own arm length. She actually likes the bike a lot now, even though it is harsh. But as long as I remember call out bumps, she has never felt the need for a suspension seatpost.




[/QUOTE]

Last edited by conspiratemus1; 05-30-19 at 03:40 PM.
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