Screamer Tandem Recumbent Bicycle
Here for Recumbent Tandem Specials
Linda & I have ridden several recumbent tandems including the RANS
Screamer, Screamer Sport and Screamer TR; the Vision R-82; the Longbikes
Eliminator and Jetstream; the Linear tandem; the Sun EZ-Tandem and the
BikeE E2. These are the bikes we are comparing the Screamer with; more
info on these other tandems is on our other
recumbent tandem page. I ride
mostly with Linda but also rode with our two daughters when they are
We find a recumbent tandem is a great place to have a one on one
conversation, get some exercise, enjoy the changing seasons and have
some fun at the same time. The Screamer models are our favorite
recumbent tandems. We live in pretty hilly country, so climbing ability
and high-speed stability and control are particularly important to us.
In a flatter area this would be less of an issue. Fast winding down
hills are a thrill on this bike.
Remember to plan ahead at high speeds it takes longer to stop or avoid
an obstacle on any tandem than on a single bike. The lateral stiffness
of the Screamer frame gives very predictable handling, a real asset at
high speeds. The two V-type rim brakes & the rear disk brake provide
good of stopping power when dry, be more cautious when it’s wet out.
We think the Screamers are the highest performance, best climbing & most
stable recumbent tandems we have ridden. Other tandems excel in one area
but in our opinion none have the complete package like the Screamer. The
Bike E E2 tandem was comfy, even had rear suspension but did not climb
well and was less stable at higher speeds. Some BikeE parts like seat
frames are hard to find these days. We still have other BikeE parts like
seat sliders, seat covers etc. The Sun tandems were comfy and stable but
not maneuverable, not as good on hills and were harder to transport. The
Vision tandems were comfy but not maneuverable. Vision seat frames are
hard to find, the Vision tandem seat frames even harder. The Longbikes
tandems are stable and well made but many riders do not like the mesh
seat as well as the padded seats on the Screamer. The Longbikes
Gulfstream is very long to transport and hard to do a U turn on, the
Jetstream is a bit less stable but more maneuverable and being about the
size of a Screamer it is easier to transport than the Gulfstream.
The Screamers seat comfort is excellent; we consider it the standard for
comfort. The RANS seats are widely regarded as the best seats in the
industry. They allow much recline adjustment and have excellent lower
back support. On the Screamer you are relatively close together, making
conversation a bit easier in traffic. There is a down side to this. When
the front is adjusted for me (6'3" and full recline) a stoker may hit
their toes or shins on the captain's seat. Water bottles on the front
seat could interfere with the stokers pedaling. Couples with a shorter
captain won’t have to worry about this and may even have room to mount
bottles on the back of the captain’s seat.
The Screamer’s OSS steering has an adjustable TerraCycle Glideflex stem
which pivots to allow lots of handlebar adjustment and has adjustable
friction. It si a nice upgrade from the old RANS Flip-it stem. The
handlebar riser by telescopes for even more adjustability. In the rear
there are under seat handholds, though Linda often holds on to the back
of my seat for a change (I’m 6’3” and recline my seat - she can reach it
easily.). In fact, on the standard size Screamer we have to adjust the
front seat carefully to leave her room for her legs, see below.
The Screamer's OSS (Over Seat Steering), stiff frame and compact
wheelbase make it better for "U" turns and riding in traffic than most
tandem recumbents we have ridden. The BikeE E2 will do a "U" turn easily
but at higher speeds it does not inspire confidence (I’m being polite
here…) On bumpy roads its Screamer's stiff frame gives a harsher ride
than the BikeE E2 or Vision R-82 or 85.
The Screamer is also available as the TR (traveling) model that
disassembles to pack in box. The Screamer TR rides just the same as the
regular Screamer, but can be disassembled for shipping; a real advantage
for couples planning on airline travel to and from bike tours. The TR
rides just as well as the regular Screamer. Screamers are assembled in
the USA; Screamer Sports are assembled in Taiwan. They share identical
Taiwanese frames. The Screamer TR uses the same frame, which is modified
here with the S&S couplings.
Linda, my wife likes the Screamer models best. The seats are closer
together than on most other bent tandems. I'm 6'3" and she is 5'2" (eyes
of blue...), which puts our seats quite close together on the Screamer.
She likes being able to rest her hands on her USS handholds or on the
back of my seat (I like the occasional shoulder rubs!) Being closer
together makes it easier for us to talk in traffic too. The lack of
space makes it a bit tight getting on and off the back though. The
Vision R-82 & 85 had more space between seats and a lower step over,
making it easier for the stoker to get on and off but harder to talk in
traffic. When we descend hills on a Screamer she really likes the
optional IPS because I don't like to coast as much as she does. Tandems
are all about communication and compromise, IPS eliminates one of these.
The Screamer is a great bike and all round our favorite tandem. As with
any recumbent we recommend test riding several before buying one. We
typically have a Screamer in stock so you can come try them and make a
For more info on
these other tandems see our recumbent tandem page.
Peter checks high speed stability on a screamer
Big bike, Little car:
a Screamer on a $90 bike rack!
rear wheel is removed to reduce width.