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  1. #1
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    trainer vs rollers

    well i notice performance has the Travel Trac rollers on sale right now plus free shipping which is amazing consiering this is an oversized item. The rollers got great reviews.

    I have a Kurt Kenetic Road Machine stationary trainer right now but im itching to try rollers. At what point does one pull the trigger? I dont have any local performance bike stores near me to test them but i can believe all the positive reviews. I am a seasonal enthusiast and not a pro racer by any means..

    heck at 139 can it be justified?

  2. #2
    Increasingly Marginalized seawind161's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scale View Post
    heck at 139 can it be justified?
    In one word: Yes!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by seawind161 View Post
    In one word: Yes!
    seems like a great deal. Im just hoping l like them.

    I dont imagine they will ever get any cheaper.

  4. #4
    Increasingly Marginalized seawind161's Avatar
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    There are several threads here and elsewhere on getting started on them. I had good luck starting off in a narrow hallway, where I could just put out an elbow to stabilize if things got out of hand. Helps also to have a low stool to stand on to get started, as the rollers add height. A pair of step aerobics blocks worked well for me. And you'll need a fan, the bigger the better.

    I really enjoy the rollers. The added requirement of paying attention to balance (and the risk of failure) makes them a little less boring than a fixed trainer. But if you decide you don't like them, for the price you're getting them for you can sell them on Craigslist and not lose a lot.

    Good luck!

  5. #5
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    I like how they are not intrusive toward my frame in anyway (just my tires--- as are all trainters).

  6. #6
    Senior Member Nermal's Avatar
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    I asked the same question at the LBS. The owner wouldn't commit, but mentioned that he couldn't stay on the rollers. Not everyone can. Not being gods gift to cycling, I went with a trainer. It would be darn nice if you could find someone locally who would let you get on and see if the work for you. A very good mechanic at the same shop said rollers were better. Less boring because you have to pay attention to what you are doing.
    Some people are like a Slinky ... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs.

  7. #7
    Increasingly Marginalized seawind161's Avatar
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    I'm not particularly skilled, either, and at 62 my balance probably isn't what it used to be, but I didn't have much trouble getting used to them. I do have friends who are much better riders who hate them.

    Even if the first try doesn't go well, give it at least 3 or 4 more tries before you write them off. For me, getting started was the hardest part. Once you get going, faster is better. It's MUCH harder to ride slow. As I said before, try it in a narrow hallway where you can stick out an elbow if you need to- much easier if you can keep both hands on the bars.

  8. #8
    Increasingly Marginalized seawind161's Avatar
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    Make sure the rollers are set up to fit your bike- with the front wheel axle about a cm BEHIND the front drum axle.

    And if you get in a hurry and forget to put the drive belt in place, expect a very exciting but VERY short ride.
    Please don't ask me how I know this...

  9. #9
    rebmeM roineS JanMM's Avatar
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    I rode rollers for one winter about 30 years ago - sold them because I moved to Atlanta, where you can ride year-round. (!)
    Set them up in a doorway for a little support as needed.
    Currently have a recumbent set up on a trainer. Quite a different experience! Just relax, watch TV and spin!
    RANS V3 (steel), RANS V-Rex, RANS Screamer

  10. #10
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    well i just got them about an hour ago. They are impossible. I set them up and slapped my bike on them. CLimbed up on the bike and was using the wall as support. I wobble all over them. I have ridden clean off the front of them 3 times so far and have blasted a huge hole in the sheetrock wall in my living room This is clearly going to take some practice.

  11. #11
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Double check your set up and make sure the front hub center line trails the front roller by a bit. Once you get the hang of it rollers make for a great workout.

    The sheet rock repair can come later....

    The house I lived in when I first had rollers was old and had plaster and lath walls...they don't break, collar bones do.

    Aaron
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
    Double check your set up and make sure the front hub center line trails the front roller by a bit. Once you get the hang of it rollers make for a great workout.

    The sheet rock repair can come later....

    The house I lived in when I first had rollers was old and had plaster and lath walls...they don't break, collar bones do.

    Aaron

    ya ill be able to fix the wall and repaint. That is easy. im fighting these things pretty hard. All they seem to want to do is guide me clear of the side after just a few pedal revolutions. Im trying to keep my body and square as possible but not only does it feel like the most unnatrual riding posture ever.....i cant seem to get spining fast enough to stablize. I need a damn chair on one side to mount the bike and a wall on the other side to lean on.

  13. #13
    Increasingly Marginalized seawind161's Avatar
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    Don't give up! Stay on the tops at first- the less steering input the better, so stay light on the bars. Four or five sessions and it'll begin to feel more natural. Don't look down!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by scale View Post
    I need a damn chair on one side to mount the bike and a wall on the other side to lean on.
    I reccomend you put a chair on one side to mount the bike and a wall on the other side to lean on.

    Once you get pedalling, keep looking forward and just keep riding. Staring down at the rollers will make you panic. You say the rollers want to guide you to the side, but that is an illusion - the rollers guide you nowhere and it is YOU who are guiding yourself to the side.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Fat Tire's Avatar
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    Or a wall on this side and a chair on the other, in case you are left handed...
    If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much room!

  16. #16
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    So how is it going? I got the very same rollers about a month ago and have really enjoyed them. Well, enjoyed them as much as one might enjoy rollers. I hadn't ridden rollers in such a long time that I had to get used to them again. I fell twice but nothing too terribly bad.

    The other posters all have good advice. I would add that you shouldn't try to steer too much. If you really have to, make sure it is just a tiny bit. Otherwise you'll ride off the edge. Ride 'faster' than you normally would (that is, in a bigger gear/higher cadence) and try not to look down directly at the drums. Look ahead, especially when you think you're getting into trouble.

    Eventually it will be as humdrum as a trainer...

  17. #17
    Senior Member garethzbarker's Avatar
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    I've only been cycling about 9 months but the snow started falling and after about 2 weeks of sitting on my butt i looked at trainers. when I saw the rollers I knew those were for me. I'm not very balanced and my bike is new so I knew it would be hard. Anyway, just got them today and threw them between a door jam. Took about 30 minutes but I finally managed to keep of the walls for a couple of minutes. There was a lot of resistance but I moved the front drum and now there is less. But If you get one make sure you can adjust in small increments. my bike is really in between two drum positions so it's not a perfect fit.
    All in all it was hard but a much more fun workout than the trainer I tried last week. I can feel tension in my core and arms from the balancing act. like Filtersweep said I like the way the rollers don't mess with my frame. I'm not using clipless and I think starting in clipless might be really hard for some people; I'll add clipless pedals after I've gotten better at balancing.

    Anyone have a history lesson on rollers? I have a feeling they've been a round a long time b/c of their simple design but I'd never heard of them until a few weeks ago. They look like something my grandfather would have had.

  18. #18
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    The first time I saw them was when I was a kid in the early to mid-1970s. I know they had already been around for a long time before that.

  19. #19
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    Check this out for the history of rollers: http://www.bikecult.com/works/rollers.html

  20. #20
    Senior Member garethzbarker's Avatar
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    I love the picture of the chic taking off her clothes while on rollers. check out her handlebars.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kneez View Post
    So how is it going? I got the very same rollers about a month ago and have really enjoyed them. Well, enjoyed them as much as one might enjoy rollers. I hadn't ridden rollers in such a long time that I had to get used to them again. I fell twice but nothing too terribly bad.

    The other posters all have good advice. I would add that you shouldn't try to steer too much. If you really have to, make sure it is just a tiny bit. Otherwise you'll ride off the edge. Ride 'faster' than you normally would (that is, in a bigger gear/higher cadence) and try not to look down directly at the drums. Look ahead, especially when you think you're getting into trouble.

    Eventually it will be as humdrum as a trainer...
    it is going good. Im slowly getting the hang of them. Wall on one side and chair on the the other. I leave the chair side unclipped in case i need to put my foot down. I have fell a few times but im slowly getting it. It definaltly takes work to get the hang of these things.

  22. #22
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scale View Post
    it is going good. Im slowly getting the hang of them. Wall on one side and chair on the the other. I leave the chair side unclipped in case i need to put my foot down. I have fell a few times but im slowly getting it. It definaltly takes work to get the hang of these things.
    Some people are just slow learners

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

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