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Can I make this garage (in a block) usable?

I have just started getting back into training. I've just done my first triathlon - a Sprint distance one. I am not a strong cyclist but really keen on doing turbo training.

I don't want to turbo train in our flat - we have just had new carpets put in everywhere, with a view to selling it in the new year.

A friend suggested the kitchen but I am worried about the noise for downstairs and next door. Additionally, it's also a real hassle having a bike in there, and the only place to store it if I wanted it out is the garage (shown below).

The garage is in a block. It is dark, dingy, the roof leaks at the side too. There is no power and also no lighting.

I am planning on clearing it out this weekend as much as I can. I have seen online that you can get battery powered (re-chargable through mains) fans. So I could buy one of those.

Do you think this would just be too unpleasant a place to train? I feel a bit self-concious being stuck in a garage by myself, with no lights, maybe people walking past, etc. Would it even be worth it?


Posts

  • webboowebboo Posts: 3,281
    You could also get a rechargeable light as well. In fact the light for me would be the main priority over a fan. If you are keen enough it will be worth trying it.
  • How about a small portable generator to power lights, fan, laptop etc. Position outside avay from the door.
  • webboo said:

    You could also get a rechargeable light as well. In fact the light for me would be the main priority over a fan. If you are keen enough it will be worth trying it.

    Yea that would make sense actually. I only said fan as I read on another forum somewhere about a fan being essential, even when it is cold. But I think you're right, a light is important.
    Notsobob said:

    How about a small portable generator to power lights, fan, laptop etc. Position outside avay from the door.

    I read up that generators can be very expensive and also very noisy. One thread was saying it was not very cost effective. I will look into it though. There may be one in the garage actually left there years ago by the previous owner. It is a huge metal thing and I've no idea how it works, it looks covered in rust and water damage so probably not even working.

    I can run my laptop easily enough. I'd only be training for maybe 30-90 minutes max maybe.
    -
  • webboowebboo Posts: 3,281
    I turbo trained for years before I got a fan which I’d bought for something else. It makes it slightly more pleasant but it’s not essential.
  • I would look at the Makita 18v battery tool range. They do a fan, lights and a radio that all run off rechargeable batteries.

    https://www.makitauk.com/products/portable-fan
    https://www.makitauk.com/products/job-site-radios
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Makita-DML805-Corded-Cordless-Light/dp/B010SV3OOO

    Other makes are available obvs :)
  • Car/leisure battery
    Power Inverter
    Solar panel

    That'll be enough to run a fan and a light for a while.

    You could probably get away with that rechargeable fan and a solar light
  • photonic69photonic69 Posts: 1,092
    There's gotta be a market out there for a turbo trainer that has a built in dynamo to harness all those watts we are putting out to power a fan! The nearest I came to it was trying to harness the wind created from a horrible Beto Wind Resistance trainer I had, but got rid of it before I found a working solution.
    A steady 75W would power a decent fan.
  • bobmcstuffbobmcstuff Posts: 9,329
    I would have thought a separate battery system (leisure battery type) would be best.
    webboo said:

    I turbo trained for years before I got a fan which I’d bought for something else. It makes it slightly more pleasant but it’s not essential.

    Fan is essential for me, I couldn't turbo train without one.
  • There's gotta be a market out there for a turbo trainer that has a built in dynamo to harness all those watts we are putting out to power a fan! The nearest I came to it was trying to harness the wind created from a horrible Beto Wind Resistance trainer I had, but got rid of it before I found a working solution.
    A steady 75W would power a decent fan.

    The Neo can power itself and there is an elite one that also powers itself.

    Pretty sure the bikes (wahoo, tacx and stages) have USB outputs (iirc)
  • I have a similar situation and use a Tacx Bushido Smart which doesn't require a power source. It is a smart trainer but it's a wheel on one so not as good as a direct drive one.

    I may look into a portable fan but it would drown out the podcasts I have playing from a Bluetooth portable speaker.
  • thistle_thistle_ Posts: 4,894
    If you're shutting the garage door while you train it could get quite hot and stuffy in there, even with a fan. If it's your garage (i.e. not rented), you could always cut a couple of holes in it and put louvres in but be mindful about security (e.g. don't put man sizes vents in the door if they can be easily smashed though, and don't put small ones in if they allow someone to reach in and open the door from the inside...)

    If you've got the door open and people are walking past just put a bucket outside and say you're doing a charity ride but you're having to do it on a turbo because of covid :wink:
  • johngtijohngti Posts: 1,324

    There's gotta be a market out there for a turbo trainer that has a built in dynamo to harness all those watts we are putting out to power a fan! The nearest I came to it was trying to harness the wind created from a horrible Beto Wind Resistance trainer I had, but got rid of it before I found a working solution.
    A steady 75W would power a decent fan.

    I’ve just taken a punt on a JetBlack whisper drive mk2 trainer which has the dynamo and a usb charging socket. Not set it up yet so no idea if it’s any good. Wheel off smart trainer, believe the original firmware was a bit pants but it’s improved since.
  • I used to turbo in our garage which is similar - one of a block - albeit I do have power in there. Clear it out, rechargeable light and fan and why not. Hang a mirror on the wall at least you can watch yourself train better than staring at a wall. I always shut the door though too self conscious to train wide open to random passers by stripped to lycra shorts dripping with sweat.

    Re a generator - never used one but would it not build up fumes?
    AFC Mercia women - sign for us

  • Re a generator - never used one but would it not build up fumes?

    You'd likely die in minutes if you ran it indoors.
  • mr_mojomr_mojo Posts: 196
    A cable I to the nearest street light should cure the lack of power issue. I’d recommend a SWA cable.
  • johngtijohngti Posts: 1,324
    johngti said:

    There's gotta be a market out there for a turbo trainer that has a built in dynamo to harness all those watts we are putting out to power a fan! The nearest I came to it was trying to harness the wind created from a horrible Beto Wind Resistance trainer I had, but got rid of it before I found a working solution.
    A steady 75W would power a decent fan.

    I’ve just taken a punt on a JetBlack whisper drive mk2 trainer which has the dynamo and a usb charging socket. Not set it up yet so no idea if it’s any good. Wheel off smart trainer, believe the original firmware was a bit pants but it’s improved since.
    And it’s going back. Doesn’t do what it should - won’t calibrate and doesn’t change resistance according to slope. Oh well.

    So yeah, don’t bother with that. Great idea, just not done brilliantly well
  • andyh01andyh01 Posts: 571
    How far away is the flat to the garage? Is there no way just to run an extension cable?
    I'm lucky in that my in-law is qualified electrician amongst other things. I've got armoured cable running from conservatory on its own circuit to shed with its own rcd fuse box,

    Our last house was harder as detached garage at end going over neighboring property and too far to make armoured cable impractical and would require going overhead, was using it for other purposes, when I brewed beer so had a propane setup to start and moved before fully establishing the brewery
  • andyrrandyrr Posts: 1,561
    The need for power could be influenced by things such as how long your turbo sessions will be and how sweaty you'll get during them.
    I currently don't have a fan (biggish desk one I had broke) and I turbo in a garage with the up and over door open - sometimes fully open, sometime 80% open with a piece of wood propping it up. Never bothered by people walking/driving past seeing a weird bloke in bib shorts and no top riding a stationary bike in the dark.
    I've a towel draped over my bars and whilst I get sweaty I don't feel it's compromising my performance during my sessions of 20 - 60 minutes or so. I've been regularly turboing right through the lockdown period when it was pretty warm at times and have also done so when it's been seriously snowy and unsafe on the roads too,
    Once I have my laptop up and running I generally don't feel a need for additional light so in your situation I'd be fairly happy with no mains power and some sort of light source for fumbling about in the dark.
    Rechargeable lights and cooling fans are available, eg
    Light:
    https://www.toolstation.com/luceco-rechargeable-led-work-light-ip65/p80137
    Fan:
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/EasyAcc-Operated-Personal-Wireless-Electric-8-inch-USB-Fan-Built-5200mah-Battery/dp/B07PGRGD5X/ref=sr_1_8?dchild=1&keywords=rechargeable+fan&qid=1601929035&sr=8-8
  • thistle_thistle_ Posts: 4,894
    johngti said:

    johngti said:

    There's gotta be a market out there for a turbo trainer that has a built in dynamo to harness all those watts we are putting out to power a fan! The nearest I came to it was trying to harness the wind created from a horrible Beto Wind Resistance trainer I had, but got rid of it before I found a working solution.
    A steady 75W would power a decent fan.

    I’ve just taken a punt on a JetBlack whisper drive mk2 trainer which has the dynamo and a usb charging socket. Not set it up yet so no idea if it’s any good. Wheel off smart trainer, believe the original firmware was a bit pants but it’s improved since.
    And it’s going back. Doesn’t do what it should - won’t calibrate and doesn’t change resistance according to slope. Oh well.

    So yeah, don’t bother with that. Great idea, just not done brilliantly well
    I'd read reviews similar to yours.
    I think the whisper drive was one of their first models and the self powered idea is great but it doesn't seem to have been retained on the newer ones.
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