Will any bike do for turbo?

So looking at bringing my cycling indoors.

Does it matter what second bike I put on the trainer? Most trainers are compatible with adapters so as long as fits obviously? Be a cheap second hand probably but want at least 105 I think or will it not matter ?

I have the one good outdoor bike that I use for everything Mason Bokeh (I'm not really into "racing" outdoors) and is more than enough of a bike for me even without extra wheels/upgrades.
I was considering an Atom but going off that idea due to lack of "feel" from real bike with drive chain and gear levers (used 105 now on Ultegra) so now back to either Neo 2T or Wahoo's kickr and eventually add the climb.

I can imagine I'll get pretty fed up with putting bike on/off the turbo so would obviously need a second bike. Would probably look secondhand sub £500 ish maybe try campy set up but guess costs/rarity will end up same Shimano again at least 105 for feel/looks


  • pblakeney
    pblakeney Posts: 26,179
    edited June 2020
    Well, I set up my wife's base model mtb for her exercise during the lockdown.
    Worked with zero issues. I imagine any bike will do.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    Veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • slowbike
    slowbike Posts: 8,498
    It really won't matter - as long as you're comfortable riding it.

    I put my wife's old/winter road bike on - change the saddle (with seat post) for a saddle I'm comfortable with and away we go .. or not ...

    It's not comfortable to ride long distances on the road - the reach is too short - but it's fine for turbo where where you grip doesn't matter.
  • fenix
    fenix Posts: 5,437
    I have put my fixed wheel on the turbo before now. Just altered the resistance as obv there's no gears.

    105 isn't really necessary.
  • mfin
    mfin Posts: 6,729
    Any old bike will do just fine, use something as cheap as possible that also fits you bang on. If you're gonna use it off the turbo as well of course this all changes.
  • crescent
    crescent Posts: 1,201
    If you end up with something with a chunky tyre be prepared to rip through it and spray rubber around. Learned this the hard way when I used an old MTB on a turbo some years ago. The tread wore down very quickly and the residue embedded itself into the carpet and on to the wallpaper after one ride. Consider a smooth, turbo specific tyre but other than that any bike should be ok.
    Bianchi ImpulsoBMC Teammachine SLR02 01Trek Domane AL3“When I see an adult on a bicycle, I do not despair for the future of the human race. “ ~H.G. Wells Edit - "Unless it's a BMX"
  • junglist_matty
    junglist_matty Posts: 1,731
    What turbo trainer do you have?
  • joe_totale-2
    joe_totale-2 Posts: 1,333
    I'd get something second hand for as cheap as possible, 11 gears is a bonus but certainly is not necessary.
    The main thing is to be comfortable on the bike.
  • daniel_b
    daniel_b Posts: 11,652
    It doesn't matter, as long as it fits - I use the first road bike I ever bought (We'll ignore the Apollo I bought back in circa 1991.....) and it works fine.

    What I will say, is that it gives you quite a good opportunity to adapt your body to lower and longer positions, if that is something you want to do - I've basically lowered and lengthened my stem over the last 3 years several times.

    As it sounds like you are going for a DD trainer, I could not agree with you more - if I had to put the bike on everytime I had to use it I doubt I would be getting on the bike at 6am as regularly as I do - admittedly you likely should prep it the night before, but it's one more thing to remember.
    I love the fact it's sat there, and I just need to plug it in and away I go.

    Like you, I plumped for 105, as I feel that is the sweetspot for price and quality.
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • sam_h_1984
    sam_h_1984 Posts: 14
    I've got an old Bianchi I use on the Turbo.
    9 speed and nothing fancy in the slightest (105 pedals though which of course just make clipping nice)

    But no, if it's a smart trainer it does a lot of the work for you, I mean my trainer isn't fantastic but it adjust resistance, I find if I'm going for an absolute blast for cadence It will feel like i'm spinning on nothing but that's down to the turbo rather than the bike.

    honestly thought I think even a 9 speed on a compact range would do 90% of people on a basic smart turbo. Above that spending more on the turbo would probably give more results than swapping the bike.
  • hhelbein
    hhelbein Posts: 5
    I use my old road bike with a 9 speed Sora groupset on my KICKR Snap wheel-on trainer. I did end up putting on a specific turbo tire to get more consistent power readings. As I tend to do hillier stuff on Zwift than the flat lands around here, it's nice having a 32T cassette.
  • My turbo bint is my 25 year old Dolan, with a mish-mash of old parts and no brakes. As stated already, as long as it fits same as your regular non-turbo bike/s, then the only important thing to me are the contact points. Pedals and saddle are same as on all my other bikes. Bar type not too fussed abut as long as the reach is same as others.

    It's great- rarely clean it and barely care LOL! It is in the garage though, so not quite the bio-hazard it would be if it were in the actual house....
  • fenix
    fenix Posts: 5,437
    You don't need 11 gears on the turbo bike. I probably use 3 or 4.

    Christ my best bike hasn't 10gears.
  • pblakeney
    pblakeney Posts: 26,179
    edited June 2020
    fenix said:

    You don't need 11 gears on the turbo bike. I probably use 3 or 4.

    Christ my best bike hasn't 10gears.

    You would use more than 3 or 4 if you were free riding on a route with climbs and descents.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    Veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.