Buying a trainer?

Wollemi
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Buying a trainer?

Postby Wollemi » Sun May 06, 2018 8:29 pm

Which one? We know nothing about them.
Will probably be used with large CX bike, and much lighter ladies road bike + maybe 27.5 diameter wheel fully-suspended MTB - or is this last set-up silly to train on?
There are several 'bikemate' models on gumtree for sale. Are these Aldi's products? Any good?

With thanks. Please link other contemporary threads if relevant.
Live every day as though it is your last - one day you will be right...

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Derny Driver
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby Derny Driver » Sun May 06, 2018 9:29 pm

In my opinion .... even the toughest person wont be able to keep riding on a mag trainer for more than 10 times before throwing the thing off the nearest cliff. They are simply AWFUL and dont even feel like riding a bike. You push one pedal down ..momentum stops almost immediately ...you push the other ... its like walking on a stepper machine. The pedals wont go around in circles at all. I believe these trainers replaced Chinese water torture for POWs in several wars and have been used to mentally crack open Guantanamo Bay prisoners. If you can use a mag trainer to "train" then you are indeed one hell of a hard man.
To get a trainer that is actually enjoyable / feels like you are riding a bike, then you need to spend big money. The LeMond and KickR trainers are the Gold standard, and really the only trainers that I would ever consider using. But the prices will scare you.
There is another option. On google images, type "Ergo Trainer". You will see some photos of contraptions that look like the top half of a bike welded onto some sort of heavy frame base. There is a front wheel with blades, and 2 chainrings and 2 chains. These things are great. They feel like you are riding a bike, the pedals turn circles due to the momentum of the front wheel. They have easy or hard gears. The fan blades throw a lot of air up to keep you cool. And you can build one yourself if you have welding skills, or pick one up secondhand. If you can find an old Repco exercise bike, they have the twin chainrings and chains already and only need minor modifications to get them going. I have a massively heavy ergo on my back verandah, its very heavy and very ugly but it is brilliant to ride. My son rides it almost every day.
So your options are:
1. Buy a cheap mag trainer, hate it, throw it away and give up on the idea of stationary training.
2. Spend big bucks on a KickR or LeMond.
3. Find or build your own Ergo trainer.

Others on here may have other ideas but thats what I reckon. Probably not a lot of help to you.
Cheers

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queequeg
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby queequeg » Sun May 06, 2018 10:15 pm

I have to agree with Derny Driver. I had a cheap mag trainer and it was utterly soul destroying, and I threw it out.
To help with interval training, I bought a Kickr, and it is just brilliant. You eyes will water at the cost, but it just like riding a real bike and you will actually use it.
This morning I did a ride with a friend, except she was on the other side of the world outside of Seattle. We both jumped on the trainer on Zwift, and ran a FaceTime video call. It’s the first time I have done that, and it was actually pretty awesome to think I could ride with someone half way across the world and talk to them like I was riding right next to them.

So, I’d have a real think about what you want to get out of the trainer before deciding on which way to go. It’s a rather large expense to get set up, but I woukdn’t trade it for anything.
'11 Lynskey Cooper CX, '00 Hillbrick Steel Racing (Total Rebuild '10), '15 Cervelo S5

neild
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby neild » Sun May 06, 2018 10:36 pm

Just my personal experience but I had a fluid trainer, used it for a little bit but hated it. It really felt like push-push-push, every pedal stroke was an effort and didn't feel good at all. Spending any time on it wasn't enjoyable and I didn't look forward to using it. Hence I stopped and it sat in the shed for a long time.

Skip forward and with all the talk of Zwift I wanted to try again. I managed to score a reasonable discount and so went all out and bought a Tacx Neo. So basically went from bottom of the range to top, and I have to say it was fantastic. I can spend an hour on the Neo and have a good workout and it goes so quick. It's so easy (time wise, not effort) to ride on the Neo. I'm sure other, similar trainers are the same so it's not just the Neo.

I'm a numbers person, so I like seeing the power etc and the 'gamification' via Zwift makes it easy to really push yourself.

May not really answer your question, but as others have alluded to, I would skip a basic trainer and go for a 'smart' trainer. You don't have to go all the way to the top of the range but the Elite Q (or something like that) is reasonably priced. Have a look at Shane Miller's YouTube, GP Lama. He does a lot of good reviews of trainers.
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Jawa
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby Jawa » Mon May 07, 2018 11:03 am

Regarding mag trainers, without sounding facetious are you doing something wrong while using them?

I have a simple JetBlack S1 Sport trainer and can comfortably (relative) use it for an hour a few days each week on max resistance and im certainly no hardman.
Pedal strokes smooth, no issues. Only gripe would be sometimes boredom creeps in

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g-boaf
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby g-boaf » Mon May 07, 2018 11:30 am

neild wrote:Just my personal experience but I had a fluid trainer, used it for a little bit but hated it. It really felt like push-push-push, every pedal stroke was an effort and didn't feel good at all. Spending any time on it wasn't enjoyable and I didn't look forward to using it. Hence I stopped and it sat in the shed for a long time.

Skip forward and with all the talk of Zwift I wanted to try again. I managed to score a reasonable discount and so went all out and bought a Tacx Neo. So basically went from bottom of the range to top, and I have to say it was fantastic. I can spend an hour on the Neo and have a good workout and it goes so quick. It's so easy (time wise, not effort) to ride on the Neo. I'm sure other, similar trainers are the same so it's not just the Neo.

I'm a numbers person, so I like seeing the power etc and the 'gamification' via Zwift makes it easy to really push yourself.

May not really answer your question, but as others have alluded to, I would skip a basic trainer and go for a 'smart' trainer. You don't have to go all the way to the top of the range but the Elite Q (or something like that) is reasonably priced. Have a look at Shane Miller's YouTube, GP Lama. He does a lot of good reviews of trainers.


I'll set you up some Erg workouts in the software I use - you'll be grimacing. Tacx Neo can be a torture device too. I only do an hour on it at a time, but it works.

I think something like the Wattbike Atom is the ultimate solution:
https://www.bikeradar.com/au/road/gear/ ... iew-51654/

Probably hugely costly, but you have what looks to be a bomb-proof stationary frame that is fully adjustable and with scope to fit your own preferred saddle and even customise a few more things. No more putting your own bike on the trainer.

BJL
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby BJL » Mon May 07, 2018 11:44 am

I have a mag trainer but never used it for more than 15 minutes at a time. It was part of my recovery following a car accident several years ago. I didn't mind it that much. It was the boredom that got me. I ended up taking the roller assembly off it and it now serves as a stand for servicing the bike. It folds up so takes little space. Holds the bike steady while cleaning/lubing, makes rear derailleur adjustments and rear wheel truing so much easier. :D

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queequeg
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby queequeg » Mon May 07, 2018 11:57 am

Jawa wrote:Regarding mag trainers, without sounding facetious are you doing something wrong while using them?

I have a simple JetBlack S1 Sport trainer and can comfortably (relative) use it for an hour a few days each week on max resistance and im certainly no hardman.
Pedal strokes smooth, no issues. Only gripe would be sometimes boredom creeps in


The mag trainer I had, at max resistance, was able to provide 160W of resistance. I was able to put the bike in the hardest gear (53/11) and happily spin out to 70km/h and just sit there. This is not real world, and it made my sessions completely pointless. At the time, 160W was the top end of my recovery zone!

Flick over to the Kickr, and it can put out up to 2000W of actual resistance. Put it in ERG mode in a workout, and if you don't keep up, you are dead in the water (which GP Lama calls the "Death Spiral"). I will never go back to a mag trainer.
'11 Lynskey Cooper CX, '00 Hillbrick Steel Racing (Total Rebuild '10), '15 Cervelo S5

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Alex Simmons/RST
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Mon May 07, 2018 12:02 pm

Derny makes some valid points about trainers. The cheap mag units are good for collecting dust and being oversized door stops. Best use is as a bike stand for cleaning the bike.

You can probably locate a second hand Kurt Kinetic Road Machine for a couple of hundred bucks which would do the trick and fit wheel sizes 22" to 29". That's probably the low end of what I think makes for a decent quality trainer set up.

While it's not got the big flywheel of dedicated ergobikes or trainers like the old Lemond revolution, its flywheel has sufficient inertia to make it quite nice to pedal on and the sealed fluid resistance unit is decently progressive and reliable (and pretty quiet). They are also build solidly and will last.

I had a pro rider I coached for many years do 15+ hours a week on one. Sometimes 20 hours when weather sucked in northern parts of America.

But the real issue as Derny mentions is whether you'll actually use it, even if it's the world's greatest ergobike. What drives any individual to use a trainer consistently is quite variable and a lot simply can't do it. So you'll need to have a really clear understanding of why you are doing it as the motivating driver will be key.

Trainertainment systems can help but I'm guessing budget is a consideration if you are looking at an Aldi-sold trainer. Then factor in all the other stuff you'll need, a decent fan, front wheel riser (block of wood will do), mat to put it all on, sweat protection for your equipment....

Trevtassie
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby Trevtassie » Mon May 07, 2018 2:52 pm

Give me $100 and pay the shipping and I'll send you my Gist Italia Fluid Trainer. Has variable resistance (which being fluid you'll never use) plus I got an engineering works to make a big flywheel for it to replicate road feel. Takes a long time to get it up to speed and a long time to slow down. Shipping would be a bit because the extra flywheel is heavy as...

Jawa
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby Jawa » Tue May 08, 2018 9:56 am

queequeg wrote:
Jawa wrote:Regarding mag trainers, without sounding facetious are you doing something wrong while using them?

I have a simple JetBlack S1 Sport trainer and can comfortably (relative) use it for an hour a few days each week on max resistance and im certainly no hardman.
Pedal strokes smooth, no issues. Only gripe would be sometimes boredom creeps in


The mag trainer I had, at max resistance ... I was able to put the bike in the hardest gear (53/11) and happily spin out to 70km/h and just sit there.


Either that was a POS trainer with stuff all resistance or your talking complete bollocks

53/11 and you “spin out”? Your cadence would need to be like 130! lol

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g-boaf
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby g-boaf » Tue May 08, 2018 10:12 am

Jawa wrote:
queequeg wrote:
Jawa wrote:Regarding mag trainers, without sounding facetious are you doing something wrong while using them?

I have a simple JetBlack S1 Sport trainer and can comfortably (relative) use it for an hour a few days each week on max resistance and im certainly no hardman.
Pedal strokes smooth, no issues. Only gripe would be sometimes boredom creeps in


The mag trainer I had, at max resistance ... I was able to put the bike in the hardest gear (53/11) and happily spin out to 70km/h and just sit there.


Either that was a POS trainer with stuff all resistance or your talking complete bollocks

53/11 and you “spin out”? Your cadence would need to be like 130! lol



Jawa: You might want to rethink that comment, Queequeg certainly isn't talking complete bollocks. He was a damn fast rider at full fitness. How about you?

I also have an old mag trainer, I also have the same feeling - not anywhere near the resistance that the Tacx Neo has. I don't use the neo much as I prefer real rides (hence I'm over 6400km this year), but it is an effective trainer setup.

And 130 cadence isn't exactly that crazy, I can sit on 130/140rpm quite comfortably and max out at 180rpm. And there are riders out there who do more than that, track riders, BMX, etc.

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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby Jawa » Tue May 08, 2018 10:32 am

g-boaf wrote:
Jawa wrote:
queequeg wrote:
The mag trainer I had, at max resistance ... I was able to put the bike in the hardest gear (53/11) and happily spin out to 70km/h and just sit there.


Either that was a POS trainer with stuff all resistance or your talking complete bollocks

53/11 and you “spin out”? Your cadence would need to be like 130! lol



Jawa: You might want to rethink that comment, Queequeg certainly isn't talking complete bollocks. He was a damn fast rider at full fitness. How about you?

I also have an old mag trainer, I also have the same feeling - not anywhere near the resistance that the Tacx Neo has.


No need to rethink at all and stand by my comments.
If you put a mag trainer on max resistance (that isn’t broken), gear selection 53/11 and “spin out” then prove it

This isn’t an attack, but I stand by my comments because a) I don’t believe the original claims and b) being as it’s the internet where cycling is involved, people make BS claims about their ability that they can’t back up in the real world

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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby tcdev » Tue May 08, 2018 12:08 pm

Interesting to read the comments on mag, fluid trainers. Never ridden a mag but have an old fluid and definitely don't hate it at all. I have a "ghetto" Zwift set up and my numbers are fictional but it still allows me to partake and get the benefits of power-based workouts and group rides.

I'm saving my pennies for a Tacx Neo so in light of some of these comments, I guess I have something to look forward to in terms of an enhanced experience! Can't wait!
2015 Giant XTC Advanced 29er 1, Suunto Ambit2 Black
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queequeg
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby queequeg » Tue May 08, 2018 6:23 pm

Jawa wrote:
queequeg wrote:
Jawa wrote:Regarding mag trainers, without sounding facetious are you doing something wrong while using them?

I have a simple JetBlack S1 Sport trainer and can comfortably (relative) use it for an hour a few days each week on max resistance and im certainly no hardman.
Pedal strokes smooth, no issues. Only gripe would be sometimes boredom creeps in


The mag trainer I had, at max resistance ... I was able to put the bike in the hardest gear (53/11) and happily spin out to 70km/h and just sit there.


Either that was a POS trainer with stuff all resistance or your talking complete bollocks

53/11 and you “spin out”? Your cadence would need to be like 130! lol


No, I am not talking crap. The trainer was absolute rubbish.

Unfortunately the cadence sensor on my bike was out of alignment or something, as it was all over the place

https://www.strava.com/activities/598898543

You'll see a little bit at the end where I was going 70km/h, but the cadence was only showing 20rpm or something stupid. For the rest of the time I just kept it at 100-110rpm and was sitting on ~50km/h. As I said, I spun out at 70km/h, bouncing on the saddle..got it up to 320W but it was just ridiculous trying to pedal that fast to get the power into a decent workout zone.
'11 Lynskey Cooper CX, '00 Hillbrick Steel Racing (Total Rebuild '10), '15 Cervelo S5

neild
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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby neild » Tue May 08, 2018 9:26 pm

tcdev wrote:Interesting to read the comments on mag, fluid trainers. Never ridden a mag but have an old fluid and definitely don't hate it at all. I have a "ghetto" Zwift set up and my numbers are fictional but it still allows me to partake and get the benefits of power-based workouts and group rides.

I'm saving my pennies for a Tacx Neo so in light of some of these comments, I guess I have something to look forward to in terms of an enhanced experience! Can't wait!


You'll love the Neo I'm sure. I did a couple of laps of Richmond UCI course last night. You get the feel of the cobbles and when you eventually get back onto smooth tarmac it's a relief, just like in real life (well kind of). The 3 short climbs really push you. When it kicks up to 14-15% around the corners you really feel it kick in.

No I'm not a rep for the Neo, and I'm sure if I'd gone for the Kickr or something similar I would have been just as happy. Now looking to upgrade the PC as Zwift is currently running quite low quality. Still works perfectly fine. Probably high-jacked the discussion a bit from the cheap trainer discussion.
Norco VFR1 Disc, Merida 903, Mofo Single Speed, Giant MTB, soon to be vintage Gazelle fixie

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Re: Buying a trainer?

Postby g-boaf » Wed May 09, 2018 7:58 am

There is a topic over in the training forum on smart trainers and software for them:

viewtopic.php?f=43&t=96789

I think the NEO is a superb unit, seems solidly constructed.

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