The main issue on my mind was gearing, both for this trip and for the future. Currently the cassette fitted is an 11-32 running with a triple chain set with 28-38-48 chainrings. It transpires that significantly lower gearing can be achieved whilst retaining good shifting by fitting the following combination, cassette 11-34, chainrings 26-36-48.
Making this change will leave us with no loss at the top end of the gearing but with significantly improved bottom gearing which on a loaded touring tandem is sure to be a good thing!
The current gearing setup is:
The proposed gearing setup is:
In addition to the above we plan to replace the front rack with a Tubus rack as the existing one is not as secure as I would like. JD Tandems are also going to put together a small spares pack to take with us on this and other trips which should avoid any problems of en route repairs, at least if I can find a bike shop I'll have the required bits with me even if I can't fix it!
The above will be topped off with an Ortlieb Bar Bag for easy access to the essentials during the ride. Planning is in full swing!