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TURBO TRAINERS which one

mountainroadmountainroad Posts: 49
edited July 2012 in Road buying advice
Never used one, never had one.

I'm looking to buy a turbo trainer (use with a full carbon bike) to get in those extra hours of training around a busy life

I don't know where to start other than I'm not going to spend £500 quid plus on my first one
£200-£250 limit

I have looked at tacx and cycleOps
i guess the handle bar resistance adjustment is good!

any advice would be appreciated
thanks!

Posts

  • dave35dave35 Posts: 1,124
    I have had a few,all good
    Tacx satori
    Tacx flow
    Cycleops fluid 2
    But the best i've bought is between a kurt kinetic road machine or my kreitler rollers-better than my turbo.
  • rdtrdt Posts: 869
    I'd look at fluid trainers: either Cycleops Jet Fluid Pro or Kurt Kinetic Road Machine, both maybe priced a little (£30-£40) above your budget.

    http://www.evanscycles.com/products/cyc ... r-ec017001
    http://www.evanscycles.com/products/kur ... r-ec029826

    Either will do a great job. Anecdotally, the Kurt Kinetic is quieter than the Jet Fluid Pro. It's also built like a brick sh1thouse, may well outlive you, and has a great reputation. I've had mine 6 years and done a few thousand miles :shock: on it; if it was nicked would buy the same again.
  • GrahammarkGrahammark Posts: 40
    I have the kk road machine it's good.
    Kuota kebel
  • Frank the tankFrank the tank Posts: 6,553
    They're all bloody horrible. :lol::lol:
    Tail end Charlie

    The above post may contain traces of sarcasm or/and bullsh*t.
  • ai_1ai_1 Posts: 3,060
    I have a Kurt Kinetic Road Machine and I'm very happy with it. It's the only one I've used so I can't give you a comparison.
    i guess the handle bar resistance adjustment is good!
    I don't see the point in a resistance adjustment. The gears give you resistance adjustment just like out on the road and with the Kurt Kinetic I do find the resistance similar to the same wheel speed on a level road so distance and speed on the cycle computer is more or less equivalent on the road or on the turbo trainer, which is nice.
  • Frank the tankFrank the tank Posts: 6,553
    Ai_1 wrote:
    I have a Kurt Kinetic Road Machine and I'm very happy with it. It's the only one I've used so I can't give you a comparison.
    i guess the handle bar resistance adjustment is good!
    I don't see the point in a resistance adjustment. The gears give you resistance adjustment just like out on the road and with the Kurt Kinetic I do find the resistance similar to the same wheel speed on a level road so distance and speed on the cycle computer is more or less equivalent on the road or on the turbo trainer, which is nice.

    Just to chuck a spanner in the works I find the resistance adjustment very useful, it gives another dimension to training sessions. Which on a turbo is key as turbo sessions are generally boring.
    Tail end Charlie

    The above post may contain traces of sarcasm or/and bullsh*t.
  • ai_1ai_1 Posts: 3,060
    Ai_1 wrote:
    I have a Kurt Kinetic Road Machine and I'm very happy with it. It's the only one I've used so I can't give you a comparison.
    i guess the handle bar resistance adjustment is good!
    I don't see the point in a resistance adjustment. The gears give you resistance adjustment just like out on the road and with the Kurt Kinetic I do find the resistance similar to the same wheel speed on a level road so distance and speed on the cycle computer is more or less equivalent on the road or on the turbo trainer, which is nice.

    Just to chuck a spanner in the works I find the resistance adjustment very useful, it gives another dimension to training sessions. Which on a turbo is key as turbo sessions are generally boring.
    ...but what's the difference between changing gear and changing a separate resistance control? Maybe I'm missing something, like I said I've only used the KK Road Machine.
  • Frank the tankFrank the tank Posts: 6,553
    Ai_1 wrote:
    Ai_1 wrote:
    I have a Kurt Kinetic Road Machine and I'm very happy with it. It's the only one I've used so I can't give you a comparison.
    i guess the handle bar resistance adjustment is good!
    I don't see the point in a resistance adjustment. The gears give you resistance adjustment just like out on the road and with the Kurt Kinetic I do find the resistance similar to the same wheel speed on a level road so distance and speed on the cycle computer is more or less equivalent on the road or on the turbo trainer, which is nice.

    Just to chuck a spanner in the works I find the resistance adjustment very useful, it gives another dimension to training sessions. Which on a turbo is key as turbo sessions are generally boring.
    ...but what's the difference between changing gear and changing a separate resistance control? Maybe I'm missing something, like I said I've only used the KK Road Machine.

    I look at it like this, I have 20gears on the bike with no resistance variation that is 20 resistance levels. My turbo has 7 levels therefore I've potentially got 140 resistance levels.

    I just think it gives you more variations on the session. One session I do is to warm up and then start on the highest resistance on the lowest gear on the block and do 2mins in that gear, then change to the next hardest gear for 2mins then change again all the way down the block. At which point I then ease off the resistance and work back up the block at 2min intervals. Obviously I won't do all the gears that would take forever but, you get my drift, it just gives another dimension to a session.
    Tail end Charlie

    The above post may contain traces of sarcasm or/and bullsh*t.
  • HerbsmanHerbsman Posts: 2,029
    CAPTAIN BUCKFAST'S CYCLING TIPS - GUARANTEED TO WORK! 1 OUT OF 10 RACING CYCLISTS AGREE!
  • HerbsmanHerbsman Posts: 2,029
    Ai_1 wrote:
    ...but what's the difference between changing gear and changing a separate resistance control? Maybe I'm missing something, like I said I've only used the KK Road Machine.
    There's a MASSIVE difference.

    Tacx Satori for example has ten resistance levels. I use it on level 3 for 2 x 20min aerobic intervals at 90-120rpm. If the turbo only had one level of resistance equivalent to level 3, there just wouldn't be enough resistance for shorter, harder intervals, even in the bike's hardest gear.

    Another example is high resistance + low cadence sessions, for example I might do 4 x 10mins at 60rpm at level 8 to simulate a long & steady hill climb. Again, even in the bike's hardest gear, I just couldn't get that level of resistance if there was only one resistance setting.

    One benefit of having variable resistance is that you can keep the bike in the same gear with the chain as straight as possible (53 x 16ish?), minimising wear on your drivetrain.
    CAPTAIN BUCKFAST'S CYCLING TIPS - GUARANTEED TO WORK! 1 OUT OF 10 RACING CYCLISTS AGREE!
  • ZingzangZingzang Posts: 196
    Herbsman wrote:
    Ai_1 wrote:
    ...but what's the difference between changing gear and changing a separate resistance control? Maybe I'm missing something, like I said I've only used the KK Road Machine.
    There's a MASSIVE difference.

    Tacx Satori for example has ten resistance levels. I use it on level 3 for 2 x 20min aerobic intervals at 90-120rpm. If the turbo only had one level of resistance equivalent to level 3, there just wouldn't be enough resistance for shorter, harder intervals, even in the bike's hardest gear.

    Another example is high resistance + low cadence sessions, for example I might do 4 x 10mins at 60rpm at level 8 to simulate a long & steady hill climb. Again, even in the bike's hardest gear, I just couldn't get that level of resistance if there was only one resistance setting.

    One benefit of having variable resistance is that you can keep the bike in the same gear with the chain as straight as possible (53 x 16ish?), minimising wear on your drivetrain.

    Your Tacx is clearly "massively" different from the KK Road Machine. The latter's notionally fixed resistance is not fixed at all but increases with "road-" (i.e. roller-) speed. I would challenge you to run out of resistance on the KK Road machine, and in twenty-five years of using different turbos, including your Tacx, I've not found one that gives a better ride.
  • banditvicbanditvic Posts: 537
    Had 4 different models all to noisy so bought a Le mond spinner, Ah peace at last.
  • HerbsmanHerbsman Posts: 2,029
    Zingzang wrote:
    Herbsman wrote:
    Ai_1 wrote:
    ...but what's the difference between changing gear and changing a separate resistance control? Maybe I'm missing something, like I said I've only used the KK Road Machine.
    There's a MASSIVE difference.

    Tacx Satori for example has ten resistance levels. I use it on level 3 for 2 x 20min aerobic intervals at 90-120rpm. If the turbo only had one level of resistance equivalent to level 3, there just wouldn't be enough resistance for shorter, harder intervals, even in the bike's hardest gear.

    Another example is high resistance + low cadence sessions, for example I might do 4 x 10mins at 60rpm at level 8 to simulate a long & steady hill climb. Again, even in the bike's hardest gear, I just couldn't get that level of resistance if there was only one resistance setting.

    One benefit of having variable resistance is that you can keep the bike in the same gear with the chain as straight as possible (53 x 16ish?), minimising wear on your drivetrain.

    Your Tacx is clearly "massively" different from the KK Road Machine. The latter's notionally fixed resistance is not fixed at all but increases with "road-" (i.e. roller-) speed. I would challenge you to run out of resistance on the KK Road machine, and in twenty-five years of using different turbos, including your Tacx, I've not found one that gives a better ride.
    Simply answered the question about the difference between variable resistance and changing gear.

    It was not mentioned that the KK Road Machine's resistance increases the faster you go. How am I supposed to know that?
    CAPTAIN BUCKFAST'S CYCLING TIPS - GUARANTEED TO WORK! 1 OUT OF 10 RACING CYCLISTS AGREE!
  • slowhand44slowhand44 Posts: 47
    I'm looking to buy a turbo trainer (use with a full carbon bike)

    I would be very wary of using a turbo trainer with a full carbon bike. AFAIK, no manufacturer guarantees their carbon frames for use on a turbo, as the stresses at the dropouts is too great. I was also looking to use a carbon frame on a turbo trainer, and all the bike shops I went too told me not to. Instead I got an aluminium winter bike, which doubled as my turbo bike.

    I would suggest trying to pick up a cheap aluminium frame (it doesn't have to be great if it's just for the turbo) rather than risk your carbon bike.
    "There's a way of transferring funds that is even faster than electronic banking. It's called marriage."
    James Holt McGavran
  • dave35dave35 Posts: 1,124
    Regarding use of a carbon bike on a turbo....if carbon was that fragile do you think people would buy/sell it?
    Every pro cycling team at the TDF use carbon bikes on turbos as do many many people,i used a carbon frame on a turbo for approx 4 hours a week for 6 months...and still ride the bike with no problem.
  • slowhand44slowhand44 Posts: 47
    I'm not saying you can't use a carbon bike on a turbo. I'm saying your warranty might be void if you do. You need to read the small print very carefully.
    "There's a way of transferring funds that is even faster than electronic banking. It's called marriage."
    James Holt McGavran
  • moonshinemoonshine Posts: 1,021
    don't worry about using a carbon frame on a turbo...

    I use a tacx satori on mt TT bike (Ridley Dean) and road bile (Felt F3), combined with my power meter and it is excellent & i don't see the need for much more.
    I use the resistance settings between 1 and 5 for intervals up to around 400w (5 during the interval, then slam it into 1 at the end of the interval in the recovery phase) then build the resistance up from 1, 2, 3 and 4 leading up to the next interval. I use the gears to match cadence and power output in level 5 - I also use it at 3/4 for longer sessions (20-40 min) at 250-300W, depending on the session target.

    I find the tacx satori more than adequate for my needs and have allowed me to work towards a 20min '10, a 55min '25 and a 1:53 '50.
  • ai_1ai_1 Posts: 3,060
    Herbsman wrote:
    Zingzang wrote:
    Herbsman wrote:
    Ai_1 wrote:
    ...but what's the difference between changing gear and changing a separate resistance control? Maybe I'm missing something, like I said I've only used the KK Road Machine.
    There's a MASSIVE difference.

    Tacx Satori for example has ten resistance levels. I use it on level 3 for 2 x 20min aerobic intervals at 90-120rpm. If the turbo only had one level of resistance equivalent to level 3, there just wouldn't be enough resistance for shorter, harder intervals, even in the bike's hardest gear.

    Another example is high resistance + low cadence sessions, for example I might do 4 x 10mins at 60rpm at level 8 to simulate a long & steady hill climb. Again, even in the bike's hardest gear, I just couldn't get that level of resistance if there was only one resistance setting.

    One benefit of having variable resistance is that you can keep the bike in the same gear with the chain as straight as possible (53 x 16ish?), minimising wear on your drivetrain.

    Your Tacx is clearly "massively" different from the KK Road Machine. The latter's notionally fixed resistance is not fixed at all but increases with "road-" (i.e. roller-) speed. I would challenge you to run out of resistance on the KK Road machine, and in twenty-five years of using different turbos, including your Tacx, I've not found one that gives a better ride.
    Simply answered the question about the difference between variable resistance and changing gear.

    It was not mentioned that the KK Road Machine's resistance increases the faster you go. How am I supposed to know that?
    The KK road machine has no variable settings but it also does not have a fixed level of resistance ireespective of speed. Resistance is provided by a rotor moving in a fluid as is the case with many others. The resistance increases as the speed of the rotor in the fluid increases just as resistance increases on the road as your speed through the air increases.

    As I stated in my post at the start of this conversation:
    "The gears give you resistance adjustment just like out on the road and with the Kurt Kinetic I do find the resistance similar to the same wheel speed on a level road"

    I was therefore quite confused by the responses saying you needed a separate control to achieve a wide range of cadence/load combinations. This is not the case with the KK and I would expect the same goes for all fluid resistance units.
  • ai_1ai_1 Posts: 3,060
    I've attached the Kurt Kinetic fluid unit resistance curve. As you can see the range of power the unit can absorb is from 0 to at least 1400 Watts and this is dependent on the speed of your rear wheel. So you can choose your cadence and then choose your gear to get the desired load.
    What makes this curve very useful is that it makes a basic cycle computer into a power meter (providing you set it up to take your speed from the back wheel rather than the front). If you know your speed you can simply convert that to an approximate power level using the curve.

    1400W is reached at a wheel speed of 64km/h (40mph)
    If you've got a 50 tooth compact chainring and your smallest sprocket has 12 teeth this means the minimum cadence to reach 1400W is 118rpm. If you've a 50/11 then this would drop to 108rpm and if you've got a 53/11 it would drop to 102rpm.
    This might be higher cadence than you typically want but I would think the vast majority of cyclists if they can reach 1400W at all would need to hit high cadence anyway to do it.
    For lower power levels you'll have the ability to choose your cadence pretty freely.

    I would typically find myself cruising at around 35km/h which according to the curve is about 300W.
    I'd normally do that in 50/17 for a cadence of around 91 but I could just as easily raise or lower the cadence and/or the power level just by changing gear and effort. For example if I wanted to do a sprint I might drop to 50/14 and end up at about 120rpm (this would give me a wheel speed of about 55km/h which is approx 900W). Or to simulate a climb I can drop to 50/13 and push a candence of say 85 (this would give a wheel speed of about 43km/h which is about 500W - in this case obviously the wheel speed isn't realistic for a climb but that's irrelevant - the power and cadence are what really matter).
  • I`ve used a Jet fluid pro on a Carbon framed bike with a powertap hub for 9 months and I can tell you that the resistance is fantastic if you like pain that is.
    I have used other cheaper trainers but found less realistic.
    The only other turbo I would buy is the above mentioned Kurt kinetic.
  • bisonerbisoner Posts: 171
    I like bikes and I like tech. I could not resist getting a Tacx Bushido (much cheaper from Germany) along with the Tacx software to allow real life training videos, ride your own gpx routes on the turbo etc etc and gives more data whilst riding that you throw a stick at. Doing hill repeats with Team Rabobank is in a word, brutal!!! I've also done plenty of the classic 'Tour' climbs - with a young family I'm unlikely to get out to the Alps anytime soon. Most importantly, it also passes the 'wife approval test'. She knows how much it all costs and still thinks it's rather good and uses it herself. Note, the software is quirky and can be a little unstable but I knew that before I got it and overall I'm really impressed with it all.

    I've also got a Elite Elastogel trainer and that is pretty good too. Not as much resistance as the Tacx but decent enough for doing turbo sessions to say a Sufferfest video.
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