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  1. #1
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    Indoor trainer, roof-top rack questions

    Rather than join a gym for the winter I'm considering an indoor trainer to use for winter exercise. Does anyone have any suggestions as to which are better (magnetic or fluid resistance, specific brands)? I don't want to spend a ton, I guess I'll also need a computer with a rear wheel sensor to track "distance". Also, how do you track the workout and do you vary resistance to simulate hills or do you just "spin"?

    Roof-top bike racks. I currently have what amounts to a Yakima Raptor (Subaru re-branded). The rivet holes for the support arm are loosening and the bike makes a rattle noise going over bumps. I'm considering replacing the rack, I would prefer one that allows you to leave the wheel on but the RockyMount Tie-Rod racks are VERY tempting (ease of install and I know of others with the same vehicle that are VERY happy with them) but you have to remove the front wheel. I have a feeling that's the most secure mounting solution to avoid the rattles but then I'd also need room inside for the wheel (might be an issue). Any thoughts or suggestions? I don't have a hitch and don't have any intention of installing one. Yes, I have plenty of interior room (it's a Subaru Outback) but I'd rather have the cargo area open and I find it easier stretching up rather than out to load the bike.

    Both of these will be used primarily with my Trek 1.1, though I may load my GT Tequesta MTB on the bike rack from time to time.

  2. #2
    Senior Member cyclist2000's Avatar
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    I got a Kurt Kinetic, its not cheap. I use a wireless computer. I normally watch TV while riding, I ride seated when the the show is playing and stand to climb when the commercials are playing.

    As for rack mounts, I am thinking of converting to hitch mounted, just for the fuel economy.
    I don't do vintage, I bought them new, rode them, kept them. Now they are just old bikes
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/bustercrb/sets/72157623483647522/

  3. #3
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    Is there some reason you HAVE to keep track of every mile and pulse beat when you're on the trainer? I'm just a recreational and fitness rider these days, but when I'm forced to use the trainer, I just go by perceived exertion. No point (for me) in knowing all the details. I'm just trying to stay loose and halfway fit.
    My trainer is a cheap Performance magnetic one, I think about $115 six or seven years ago. It's pretty basic, but again, fine for what I want to do.
    I've replaced some of the rivets on my car top Yakima with bolts from Home Depot. Cost pennies, and did the job. if I did replace it I might go with a hitch-mount rack for the mileage, but I'd have to pay for a hitch,too, which will buy a lot of gas.

  4. #4
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    I'm not terribly concerned about fuel mileage. Having the bike on the roof, 2 extra passengers and luggage for 3 for a week cost me 5 MPG this summer compared to part of the same road with just me and luggage for 4 days with no bike and the rails stowed, and that 5 MPG lower was STILL better than I ever saw from my last vehicle.

    I don't HAVE to know how "far" I've gone while on a trainer, but it'd be nice to keep track. I don't use an HRM. I'm a "clyde" and hope to use that to lose more weight over the winter. My plan was exactly like you noted cyclist, set it up so I can see the TV and go at it. I can even set it up near an exterior door that I can open to stay cool. I live in upstate NY so that should be effective. Do you guys put anything down to protect the floor/carpet from sweat? I sweat profusely, I have a towel I could put down.

  5. #5
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Can't look over your shoulder, But rivets can be replaced , a pop rivet tool is an investment,
    but after that the various types and sizes pop- rivets are cheap.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    There is no "distance" on a trainer. Duration and level of effort are what's relevant, and perhaps cadence. For duration, a clock works. For level of effort RPE, HR or a power meter can be used, in order of increasing preference.

  7. #7
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    I bought a used carpet runner in a thrift shop to put under the trainer and bike--about 30 inches by six feet, cost $4 and it can go in the washing machine (it doesn't come out looking like new, but who cares?). The way our house is laid out, the sensible place for the trainer is in the living room, and something will eventually leak or drip.

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