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turbo smart trainer for newbie

tonysjtonysj Posts: 386
edited November 2017 in Road buying advice
Hi all.
I've had the road bike for about 12 months now and last winter continued to ride outside in some horrendous conditions looking back.
I fancy buying a turbo trainer and I have never been on one but hear about the benefits both for training but also fitness tests etc.
I really don't want to spend a lot on something I may not get on with so was looking at something like the Tacx flow smart trainer at around £220. I can get that past the missus without the ear bashing lol.

Could pick it up for £159 with discount cards etc from Halfords.
I will be using it in a detached garage so no issue with noise etc.
I may try 1 of the smart apps swift or other so thought a smart trainer is best.
I can get around 28% discount from Halfotds so I will buy from there and they have a lot of choice so it's confusing.
I currently mainly ride solo but retire at the end of the year so will have more time on my hands to go on the bike

Any advice appreciated.

Regards
Tony.

Posts

  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    You'll be restricted as to what is available smart trainer wise with your budget. Be mindful that if you're using it away from the main building, you will need a power source. Not all smart trainers are self generating power.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,734
    Have a look here:

    viewforum.php?f=40121

    That model is limited in its "Smartness". It will send data to the app but the app will NOT be able to vary the resistance on the trainer.

    Read the various threads on the TT forum and you'll get a better understanding.

    You will also need:
    a fan (even in the garage),
    a tablet/laptop,
    some entertainment (music/TV)
    usual HRM/Cadence/Speed monitors
    patience while you get the hang of it - don't go too hard otherwise you will be put off (less is more)
    a mat/rug for the TT (I use an offcut of old carpet) to help keep the TT stable/secure
    power if a Smart trainer
  • There is a forum specifically for bedwetters, you may want to ask in there:

    http://www.bikeradar.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=40121
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • Navrig2 wrote:
    Have a look here:

    viewforum.php?f=40121

    That model is limited in its "Smartness". It will send data to the app but the app will NOT be able to vary the resistance on the trainer.

    Read the various threads on the TT forum and you'll get a better understanding.

    You will also need:
    a fan (even in the garage),
    a tablet/laptop,
    some entertainment (music/TV)
    usual HRM/Cadence/Speed monitors
    patience while you get the hang of it - don't go too hard otherwise you will be put off (less is more)
    a mat/rug for the TT (I use an offcut of old carpet) to help keep the TT stable/secure
    power if a Smart trainer

    That's rubbish, i have this TT and it does vary the resistance according to gradient on Zwift
  • Yes, the Flow Smart is fully controllable and works properly with Zwift. Navrig is probablythinking about the Satori Smart which just transmits but doesn't adjust. It looks a bit of a bargain for the price you can get it for - don't think you'll do better for that price!
  • totally agree, at that price the Flow is a steal. At this price range you will get nothing nearly as good. I would highly recommend it.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,734
    Apologies guys. I was going on price rather than looking it up.

    At that price snap it up.
  • tonysjtonysj Posts: 386
    Thanks guys.
    I already have a garmin 1000 with cadence, speed and heart rate.
    Garage has power and should be ok for what I want.
    Yes agree the discount makes it an easy option.
    I was tempted to go for a direct drive trainer but it's a lot of money even with the discount to use and not get on with it letting it gather dust ....
    With the kit I already have is there anything else I will need?
    T
  • Navrig2 wrote:
    Have a look here:

    viewforum.php?f=40121

    That model is limited in its "Smartness". It will send data to the app but the app will NOT be able to vary the resistance on the trainer.

    Read the various threads on the TT forum and you'll get a better understanding.

    You will also need:
    a fan (even in the garage),
    a tablet/laptop,
    some entertainment (music/TV)
    usual HRM/Cadence/Speed monitors
    patience while you get the hang of it - don't go too hard otherwise you will be put off (less is more)
    a mat/rug for the TT (I use an offcut of old carpet) to help keep the TT stable/secure
    power if a Smart trainer

    You'll need the above, also possibly an ANT+ dongle and usb extension for it to get near as bike as possible for better signal.
    I have mine hooked up to laptop with this, and on to a flat screen tv via HDMI cable. Also use a tablet (can use a phone) as on bike tool for things such as changing route off standard course, interact with other riders and other bits and bobs. True thus is a bit tech overload and you can get away with just a laptop or tabelt itself. You can transmit the signal via bluetooth to tablet or phone, but if using laptop as well best use the ANT dongle
  • As Navrig says you'll need a fan - I use a big floor standing number. They're not expensive if you shop around a bit. A little desktop thing won't cut it once you get going even if it's freezing outside the garage :)

    Those sweat catching things that attach to your bars and seatpost are good, but as long as you clean any sweat off when you're done to avoid corrosion they're a luxury rather than a must have.

    Check it comes with a front wheel riser too - not sure about that though most Tacx turbos do. If you don't raise the front wheel a bit you'll feel like you're riding downhill all the time as the rear is lifted up a bit.
  • foggymike wrote:
    As Navrig says you'll need a fan - I use a big floor standing number. They're not expensive if you shop around a bit. A little desktop thing won't cut it once you get going even if it's freezing outside the garage :)

    Those sweat catching things that attach to your bars and seatpost are good, but as long as you clean any sweat off when you're done to avoid corrosion they're a luxury rather than a must have.

    Check it comes with a front wheel riser too - not sure about that though most Tacx turbos do. If you don't raise the front wheel a bit you'll feel like you're riding downhill all the time as the rear is lifted up a bit.

    Re riser, the Flow does come with one, so that cuts on thing off your list
  • wongataawongataa Posts: 968
    foggymike wrote:
    Those sweat catching things that attach to your bars and seatpost are good, but as long as you clean any sweat off when you're done to avoid corrosion they're a luxury rather than a must have.
    I find that a towel draped over the bike is a perfectly good sweat catcher and is also an awful lot cheaper.
  • alex222alex222 Posts: 598
    wongataa wrote:
    foggymike wrote:
    Those sweat catching things that attach to your bars and seatpost are good, but as long as you clean any sweat off when you're done to avoid corrosion they're a luxury rather than a must have.
    I find that a towel draped over the bike is a perfectly good sweat catcher and is also an awful lot cheaper.
    Yes small sports towel does the job perfectly for me.
  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 10,194
    £159 is a very good deal, I would grab it now if I were you - easy enough to resale I would have thought, as and when you want to upgrade to a DD trainer - or even just keep it as a backup trainer.

    This is the fan I have (Although I have a pedestal one too) and highly recommend it - I would also suggest either putting it somewhere where you can switch it on and off by hand, or buy a simple and cheap remote switch, so you can warm up before you switch it on, but don't have to get off the bike to achieve it.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sealey-HVF18-Industrial-Velocity-Floor/dp/B000RA0Y0Y/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1511171817&sr=8-1&keywords=sealey+fan&dpID=61O3SljfnXL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch

    I went from a Vortex (That I bought for £225 when the £ had some value) last year, to a DD trainer, and it is clearly a marked increase in outlay, BUT I felt it was justified at the point I was in my training (Trainerroad devotee) and have not regretted it one bit, it's a serious bit of kit, and my training has come on significantly since the purchase.

    Perhaps a retirement present to yourself ;-)
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    This guys good for all things indoor training - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1JHhHxDVQ0
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,734
    Just be careful with a floor fan if there is a lot of dust on the garage floor. I find that my eyes get gritty and sore which is probably a combo of drying out and dust. I now wear wrap round glasses once the fan goes on and that is with a tall fan.
  • tonysjtonysj Posts: 386
    Thanks for all the very usefull info guys..
    Is a trainer tyre essential?
    I don't have any spare wheels but have the original stock tyres that come with the bike as I upgraded to conti 4000sii.
    It wouldn't bother me changing tyres as I will have the time to plan my days. So if weather's good I can change back and enjoy a ride out on the roads etc.
    Regards.
    Tony.
  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 10,194
    TonySJ wrote:
    Thanks for all the very usefull info guys..
    Is a trainer tyre essential?
    I don't have any spare wheels but have the original stock tyres that come with the bike as I upgraded to conti 4000sii.
    It wouldn't bother me changing tyres as I will have the time to plan my days. So if weather's good I can change back and enjoy a ride out on the roads etc.
    Regards.
    Tony.

    Technically you do not need to use a dedicated turbo tyre - I used to run with an older tyre on a fluid trainer, but I found that when my power increased, and the intensity of the workouts crept up, it started squaring off, and I also had to be really on the ball with keeping the pressure at 100+ psi to keep it in the right ball park, and also, depending on the trainer style, this may, or may not lead to a slipping rear wheel.

    A turbo tyre can be had for sub £20 IIRC.

    Nothing to stop you starting with one of your old tyres, and if you can keep it going, using the pair potentially over time, that's £40-£50 you have saved yourself towards your next DD trainer ;-)
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • tonysjtonysj Posts: 386
    Daniel thanks and thanks to all you others who provided useful info.
    Better get ordering things......
    Cheers
    Tony.
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