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Direct drive trainers

Hi

I'm after a new trainer as an upgrade from my Tacx Vortex.

My priorities are accurate power (a close match to my Vector pedals - if there's one that actually gets within 2% of a real power meter, that'd be great) and stability. It doesn't need to fold away.

I've bought an Elite Suito and it's not good. 8-12% overstatement of power, really wobbly and the flywheel isn't straight or maybe balanced, causing the whole bike to shake. It's going back.

I thought the Kickr Core might be a better bet, but I've just seen the tread on trainerroad with all the reliability problems.
I can't stretch to a Neo, budget is about £650. (I have cadence sensors and cassettes already).

What do people recommend?

Thanks.

Posts

  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 9,036
    Flux S?
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • Yes, one I''m considering. it's bulk makes it look like it would be stable. Nice price. Accuracy?
  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 9,036
    Just spotted there is a Flux 2 as well - Halfords have it for £649, but if you have BC membership that lops it down to £585, and if your work has any discount cards, you can lop a further 10% off that by paying with giftcard, and or go through a cashback site.

    When I was looking 2.5 years ago, I considered the original Flux, but the reliability was shocking, so ended up bagging a Neo for circa £800. Touch wood, it's given me zero problems, and is used at least 4 hours a week, pretty much week in, week out - and that's living in a garage.

    I haven't looked at reviews, but I would hope the S and now this 2 have sorted out the reliability issues.

    The Neo is meant to be 1% accuracy, looks like the latest Flux is 2.5%.

    Have you considered the Drivo, that's 1% I think, not sure if there are any deals on currently.
    Or has the Suito put you off - unless they would let you upgrade at a favourable trade cost?

    EDIT: Drivo half price at Halfords.
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • Direto?

    Look at the DC Rainmaker trainer comparison chart and see which ones fit your budget.
  • joey54321joey54321 Posts: 1,297
    Are you set on direct drive? For your budget, you could probably pick up a Kurt Kinetic road machine and a powermeter. IME, short of the Neo, this is a very good setup for money and has the benefit you could use it outside.
  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 9,036
    joey54321 wrote:
    Are you set on direct drive? For your budget, you could probably pick up a Kurt Kinetic road machine and a powermeter. IME, short of the Neo, this is a very good setup for money and has the benefit you could use it outside.

    He already has the PM in the form of the Vectors.
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • joey54321joey54321 Posts: 1,297
    Ah yeah! Didn't take that bit in. In which case I'd say use the Vectors and either by the Kurt Kinetic or save up for a Neo.
  • marykamaryka Posts: 748
    Kickr Core?

    Or a secondhand Kickr, but not a secondhand Neo (so many problems with V1 that I wouldn't chance a non-warrantied one).

    Cycleops H2? Also £650 at Halfords right now. Apparently quite noisy though. I would probably buy this now if I were buying new again, rather than the Neo we got 2 years ago (heavily on sale but still). The Neo in all honesty has disappointed me for what it costs.

    If you don't care about having a smart trainer and can find a Lemond Revolution, apparently it's amazing but very very loud.

    As much as I like the KK wheel-on trainers, direct drive was a game-changer for me -- just get on and go, no warming up the tire and recalibrating, etc. I see KK now has a direct drive trainer and it's like the Rock N Roll (moves side to side) but I'd want to try one out first before committing to buying it.

    DC Rainmaker has loads of good reviews and comparisons if you haven't seen his website yet.
  • joey54321joey54321 Posts: 1,297
    Direct drive was phenomenally underwhelming for me, which is why I sent my Kickr back after thinking I paid £900 for a worse feeling trainer with no upside (I already had a powermeter).

    Never found the KK wheel on trainers anything other than amazing. Also never had an issue with recalibration or warming up the tyres, just get on and go like you.

    I now have a Neo which I think is genuinely a different beast is the way it simulation momentum from the road.
  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 9,036
    The Neo is the daddy - I thought long and hard about it, but it was the right decision for me.
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    maryka wrote:
    Kickr Core?

    Or a secondhand Kickr, but not a secondhand Neo (so many problems with V1 that I wouldn't chance a non-warrantied one).

    There's no problems with the V1 of the Neo. If you mean noise from the hub housing, that is dust particles amplifying as the housing spins around. The remedy (if it happens to you), is to remove the housing, clean it with a dry cloth and put it back on. Only happens if the Neo has been handled roughly i.e. dropped or knocked about.

    OP, you can pick up a Neo on eBay within your budget. It's a top end trainer that requires no calibration, is one of if not the most accurate trainer out there, silent and one of the best for short sprint intervals during workouts where mid range trainers like the Direto, Flux etc struggle.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • Just bought a Cycleops H2 from Halfords (price as above). Read plenty of reviews and posts - seems like no major problems and built to last. Also a high end bit of kit - built to compete with the Kickr / Neo, but now on sale.

    Not disappointed so far. Seems a little better than the Elite Direto I borrowed and feels super smooth. Can definitely feel the big flywheel doing its job.

    Noise isn't an issue for me. Yes it whines, but I always have music and a fan on so can't hear it.

    Only problem so far has been with the Rouvy app and a failed firmware update then struggling to find how to callibrate.
  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 9,036
    @gingerflash - not sure where you are based:

    https://forum.bikeradar.com/viewtopic.php?f=40091&t=13107725

    *Only thing I would add is that he's a brand new poster, so I'd be visiting personally.
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • Thanks all.

    I bought a Flux S. First one had a problem with the belt, very noisy. Got it replaced. Second one seems fine so far.
    Ride feel seems good. Power readings are spot-on, within 2 or 3w of my Vectors.

    Only slight issue is the resistance floor. For chainline and feel reasons, I prefer to use the big ring. however, in resting periods, the minimum resistance requires too much power. So if my training plan wants me to be doing 145w, i can't hit that without switching to the small ring. if i stay in the small ring, then i can't hit anything over 300w without using an awful combination of small-small, or switching to big ring, which then creates a big power spike as i shift.

    The solution I've found is to fit a wide ratio cassette, an 11-32, instead of the 11-28 i had before. I can use the middle of the cassette (the 16 or the 14) for the efforts and then shift into the 25 (third largest) for the rest periods (about 150w at 80rpm) without having a really bad chainline.

    Still early days but it seems to be working well so far.

    (Thanks for pointing out the Neo 2, but given that I've had to return two trainers already, and my previous Tacx Vortex packed up too, I wasn't keen on anything but brand new, from a shop. £1000 was beyond budget too).
  • dannbodgedannbodge Posts: 964
    Thanks all.

    I bought a Flux S. First one had a problem with the belt, very noisy. Got it replaced. Second one seems fine so far.
    Ride feel seems good. Power readings are spot-on, within 2 or 3w of my Vectors.

    Only slight issue is the resistance floor. For chainline and feel reasons, I prefer to use the big ring. however, in resting periods, the minimum resistance requires too much power. So if my training plan wants me to be doing 145w, i can't hit that without switching to the small ring. if i stay in the small ring, then i can't hit anything over 300w without using an awful combination of small-small, or switching to big ring, which then creates a big power spike as i shift.

    The solution I've found is to fit a wide ratio cassette, an 11-32, instead of the 11-28 i had before. I can use the middle of the cassette (the 16 or the 14) for the efforts and then shift into the 25 (third largest) for the rest periods (about 150w at 80rpm) without having a really bad chainline.

    Still early days but it seems to be working well so far.

    (Thanks for pointing out the Neo 2, but given that I've had to return two trainers already, and my previous Tacx Vortex packed up too, I wasn't keen on anything but brand new, from a shop. £1000 was beyond budget too).

    If you're lucky (like I was) after going through 3 replacement Flux trainers, Tacx offer an upgrade to the Neo for a small price (or used to anyway).

    I never had the resistance floor issue when I had a flux and I tend to always use the big ring unless doing freeriding on zwift.
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