EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Off-Season Sports & The Lighter Side › Cycling › Mag vs. Fluid Trainer
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Mag vs. Fluid Trainer

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
My parent's have been fishing around for gift ideas, and my mom suggested a trainer so I can get some "riding" in this winter. I thought that these were all upwards of a couple hundred dollars, but as shown below, they are not.

How do they magnetic trainers compare to a fluid trainer? Anything to look out for on the lower end models? I have a feeling the one I would get is the Ascent Magnetic 3 Level Trainer. Is this even worth it?
post #2 of 21
We have about 30 kids and parents in our club that ride indoors on trainers all winter long, so I see quite a few different models. From my experience (I have fluid, magnetic, and centrifuge) I would rate the centrifuge first, followed by the fluid and then the magnetic. The centirfuge and fluid's resistance have a more exponential curve the harder you pedal, and seem to me to be smoother, than the magnetic's more linear curve.

We have several kids that use that Acent trainer, and while they have not had any problems with it, I don't liked it's connection system. I find that small circular knob a pain to use.

Bike Nashbar and Performance both have a reasonably priced fluid trainer (they are exactly the same) that my daughter and wife use and love. My wife's has the control on it, which can change the resistance level, but quite frankly we never use it and it just gets in the way.
post #3 of 21
I would trend away from magnetic trainers wind trainers. The variable resistance is inconsistent and un road like. They are also much louder (not good if you like to watch TV and not go insane). If you can, try to find a cycleops fluid trainer and Kurt Kinetic fluid trainer. I ridden both of them extensively each winter (training for Ironman) and have had no problems with them. The fluid trainers are quiet, have a consistent resistance band, and mimick real road conditions (spin up and spin down).
post #4 of 21
I have a Cycle-Ops fluid trainer and really like it. Nice and smooth, quiet and with a bunch of miles on it still works like the day I bought it. Be sure to get the riser block for your front wheel so you don't feel like you are always riding downhill.
post #5 of 21
I ride rollers and a trainer. The rollers will help with form and pedal technique but not so much for power building. I do find that my rollers make the time pass much quicker though. For a trainer I use a Elite Real Axiom virtual trainer. It is a mag unit that's resistance is constantly being varied by the gradient of the terrain that you are virtually riding on while watching a DVD of that race courses. Here is a link
I have also included a pic of my setup just for the poseur points....

post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by krp8128 View Post
My parent's have been fishing around for gift ideas, and my mom suggested a trainer so I can get some "riding" in this winter. I thought that these were all upwards of a couple hundred dollars, but as shown below, they are not.

How do they magnetic trainers compare to a fluid trainer? Anything to look out for on the lower end models? I have a feeling the one I would get is the Ascent Magnetic 3 Level Trainer. Is this even worth it?
I bought that model for my mom and I tried it. It works great. Smooth, quiet. No complaints. I would get that one for myself if I wanted a trainer. ( I have some rollers and don't really need a trainer at this time.)
post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
telerod,

Thanks for the info. I think everyone else missed my cost factor, $200+ is getting into almost what the bike itself is worth right now. I think I'll go with this for now, its got to be better then nothing.
post #8 of 21
A few words of advice for you...
1. Have a fan blowing on you. You will develop lots of sweat and you can quickly over heat pretty fast if you do not have any air blowing across you.
2. Have TV and a good movie close by to watch while you ride.
3. If you are on the carpet make sure to have a mat down so you don't spray grease on the carpet.
4. Use an old rear tire. The trainer WILL eat your back tire....
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by SJB View Post
I have a Cycle-Ops fluid trainer and really like it...Be sure to get the riser block for your front wheel...
after being thoroughly schooled in a climb-heavy century a couple weeks ago, i decided to invest in one of these. gonna pick up the riser block tomorrow, and maybe some sort of trainer-specific tire. will report after some saddle time.
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by garysol1 View Post
A few words of advice for you...

4. Use an old rear tire. The trainer WILL eat your back tire....
Continental makes a yellow trainer specific tire now that lasts longer and does not produce black dust like a regular road tire.
post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post
Continental makes a yellow trainer specific tire now that lasts longer and does not produce black dust like a regular road tire.
I wouldn't recommend on of those things. I had a rear wheel mounted with one of those that I used on the trainer and in less than a year (only using it once or twice a week during the winter) it just came apart. My bike, trainer, trainer mat and the surrounding area were covered by little pieces of yellow rubber. I have never had that happen to a real tire.
post #12 of 21
I saw a newby trackstar messenger with yellow tires and wondered if they were trainers, having read this thread. Haha, surely they were yellow road tires but the idea crossed my mind as most of these urban fixie riders are clueless. There are several pros I have a lot of respect for. Generally there are a lot more riders out there since the latest gas price scare and a lot of them are not highly skilled yet. The biggest increase I've seen since 911 when people realized they could not get out of town on public transport when the shit hits the fan. I rode to the Citgo station on the back side of the pentagon (where the plane hit) twice that day delivering and picking up video tapes which couldn't be uploaded because the lines were jammed. I saw crowds of people walking home past that point which is a couple miles from Key Bridge. I guess a bike could come in handy for a trip of 3-5 miles! Good thinking.

I should have informed my friend krp8128 that rollers are way more fun than trainers. At the time I was concerned that all the rich bikers here were talking up the fancy trainers they suckered for, and missing the point that the $80 units did all that. I found my rollers in a neighbor's trash. I don't live in a neighborhood where people are riding bikes going nowhere. I'd wager even money that my rollers were the only set within three blocks of my house when I found them fifteen years ago and still are.
post #13 of 21
I will never recommend any trainer other than a Kurt Kinetic fluid trainer. I don't have room for rollers, so I needed a stationary, and this is the best I've been on hands down. Still boring as hell, but a more realistic "road feel" - it's not just hype. It's also fairly quiet, and unlike most fluid trainers, it will not leak because the shaft is coupled to the resistance unit with magnets. No gaskets to blow out.

I just bought a second one for my wife from a guy who used it about 5 hours (as a lot of trainers out there tend to have). Watch craigslist - deals to be found there. They are normally about $300-350, but I got mine in near new condition for $150.
post #14 of 21
Magnetic trainers (the simples non-computerized ones) are decent, but have a tendency to give you a very linear resistance. Also, they usually have a very small flywheel, which can cause a choppy pedal stroke.

Fluid trainers usually have variable resistance and heavier flywheel. They are as close to riding on the road as you can get with a trainer.

As for Kurt vs. CyclOps... they both have the same design and used to work together. Way back when CyclOps trainers used to leak from the seals, so Kurt came up with a magnetic seal. The leaking is not a problem now. If I were you, I'd buy whichever one you got the best deal on.

Don't forget the rollers. If you want to do more than work out, rollers are a good way to go. They don't do as much for power building, but are great for developing technique. The rule of thumb with rollers is that the smaller the drum, the higher the resistance.
post #15 of 21
FWIW, I like the Kurt power output algorithm but I absolutely hate their computers and wheel magnets from a purely mechanical and display ergonomics standpoint.
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by wickedwheels View Post
As for Kurt vs. CyclOps... they both have the same design and used to work together. Way back when CyclOps trainers used to leak from the seals, so Kurt came up with a magnetic seal. The leaking is not a problem now. If I were you, I'd buy whichever one you got the best deal on.
That's not what I understand - the Kinetic is the only one with the magnetic coupling. The Cycleops has ring seals.
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by axebiker View Post
I will never recommend any trainer other than a Kurt Kinetic fluid trainer. I don't have room for rollers, so I needed a stationary, and this is the best I've been on hands down. Still boring as hell, but a more realistic "road feel" - it's not just hype. It's also fairly quiet, and unlike most fluid trainers, it will not leak because the shaft is coupled to the resistance unit with magnets. No gaskets to blow out.

I just bought a second one for my wife from a guy who used it about 5 hours (as a lot of trainers out there tend to have). Watch craigslist - deals to be found there. They are normally about $300-350, but I got mine in near new condition for $150.
Having read many recommendations like axebiker's on cycling forums, I just purchased this "secret trainer deal" new at $228 at bikesportmichican: https://www.bikesportmichigan.com/sh...cat=272&page=1

Very reputable dealer per slowtwitch.com forum (the owner seems to be the sierrajim of slowtwitch). They can't name the product due to ad restrictions but all the tri geeks at slowtwitch who wanted kurt kinetics report great success. Look at the "related products".
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by axebiker View Post
That's not what I understand - the Kinetic is the only one with the magnetic coupling. The Cycleops has ring seals.
I don't think I worded it right...

Kurt trainers have the magnetic coupling to deal with the leaking issues that CyclOps had. Those issues went away a LOOOOOONG time ago. I certainly wouldn't use that as the reason to get the Kurt.
post #19 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by wickedwheels View Post
I don't think I worded it right...

Kurt trainers have the magnetic coupling to deal with the leaking issues that CyclOps had. Those issues went away a LOOOOOONG time ago. I certainly wouldn't use that as the reason to get the Kurt.
Sounded like a good enough reason to me... I have two KK's in my basement to attest to that.
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by ts01 View Post
Look at the "related products".
I did get a kick out of that.
post #21 of 21
My Blackburn matches the paint of the trainer queen frame.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cycling
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Off-Season Sports & The Lighter Side › Cycling › Mag vs. Fluid Trainer