Maker Faire, San Mateo CA
Below an article by New York Times Best Seller List writer and wife of founder Shawn Raymond... Luba Brezhnev : )
It can be said without exaggeration that the Unatandem is a 21st-century sensation!
Judge for yourself… For over 130 years, people have been wrestling with the problem of creating a truly convenient two-rider bicycle. The existing tandem bikes are too clunky and heavy, too hard to transport. It’s a hassle to carry them upstairs and they don’t fit into elevators. Plus, they’re too expensive and not everyone can afford one. The person sitting on the back seat can’t see what’s in front, and a child sitting behind his or her parent’s back doesn’t even feel safe. Worst of all, existing tandem bikes make communication virtually impossible. If you think about it, riding a bicycle together should be all about friendly conversation and sharing opinions. It can even be a test of psychological compatibility!
Today this long-standing problem has been solved by Shawn Raymond, a gifted American engineer. Two and a half years of painstaking work have been crowned with success, and he is ready to present his remarkable bicycle to the world. It not only lets you chat – and even touch – while you ride together, but it also opens up new horizons by accompanying you on any kind of trip. Lightweight and easy to transport, it can travel long distances by train or plane.
The Unatandem makes it easy to combine two very important aspects of our lives – exercise and communication. People these days are very busy. Work, social life, exercise, and the Internet eat up huge chunks of our lives, leaving us no time for a heart-to-heart talk with a loved one. Parents communicate with their children in sporadic bursts, mainly while watching TV or eating.
What joy for a child to take a bike ride with Dad, Mom or Grandpa! Up till now there were three choices: a tandem bike, separate bicycles, or one bike with a trailer for the child. All were flawed. I’ve observed many families riding separate bikes. The child can’t keep up with his Dad; the father is forced to constantly look backward… There’s no communication, except for parents shouting to the child to pedal faster. I have also seen the child trailer flip over while in motion.
The Unatandem solves multiple problems in one design:
1) Very easy to control, it can make sharp turns and has several gears. It’s convenient, handsome and easy to transport. Its length is no more than that of a regular one-rider bicycle. It folds up, so it’s easy to transport by car, easy to load and unload.
2) With the standard tandem bike, the driver sits on the front seat like a ship’s captain. But with the Unatandem, the passenger sits up front while the driver sits behind, controlling the steering wheel. This makes the passenger feel safer. The passenger also sees everything in front and on all sides, and can communicate with the driver. After taking a spin with their kids on the Unatandem, so many parents have spoken excitedly to us:
"For the first time ever, my son volunteered how he had spent his day in school. Then talked about the book he’s reading now…"
"My grandson sat in front of me, singing songs!"
3) The whole family has a chance to recreate together. Don’t run off to a fitness club – instead, take a ride with members of your family on the Unatandem! You will have loads of fun and learn things about your loved ones you never suspected. You’ll learn what they live for, what they love, what their dreams are. Your child will open up in ways you knew nothing about and will amaze you at times.
Communication ensures understanding; it is the cement that keeps the family together and happy. The Unatandem will help you raise your child and strengthen your personal relationships. It will become a part of your home.