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Weight limit for trainers (Wahoo KICKR)

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Weight limit for trainers (Wahoo KICKR)

Old 07-10-16, 05:13 PM
  #1  
JakiChan
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Weight limit for trainers (Wahoo KICKR)

I suppose I should have researched this before purchasing (and I will assume I can return if necessary): I recently bought a Wahoo KICKR and it has a weight limit that I'm a bit over:

What is the weight limit for the KICKR? ? Wahoo Fitness Support

The KICKR Power Trainer has a weight limit of 250 lbs (around 113 kg).

The reason we placed the weight limit at 250 lbs was based on our concern for the bicycle frame. The KICKR (and all other trainers) introduce a few unique forces on a frame that aren't normally experienced when riding on the road. To be safe, we set the weight limit low even though, as you might have noticed, the KICKR is probably the most stout trainer on the market!
I'm sure their lawyers had a fair amount of input on this. Does anyone have any advice to offer on this weight limit? Has anyone over 250 been using a Kickr without incident?
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Old 07-10-16, 05:27 PM
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Side note, the Tacx Neo shows a weight limit of 275. But given that the frame would be the same, it makes no sense.
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Old 07-10-16, 06:15 PM
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Just ride it. You could put hundreds of kg onto a trainer frame and they won't give out. I'm sitting at 125kg ATM and ride my KKRM regularly doing sprint training with big gear full gas sprints. Never had an issue.

On another note, most concern lies with people breaking their frames while in a trainer. Last week I watched a blog vid of a high profile carbon repairer in Australia. The blogger at one point puts the question to him about how many frames has he fixed due to trainer damage. Answer ---- ZERO!! That surprised me as there is a definite urban legend that it's a major concern!
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Old 07-10-16, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by brawlo View Post
On another note, most concern lies with people breaking their frames while in a trainer.
That's exactly the concern. I'm not worried about the trainer - I'm worried about the bike. As Wahoo puts it, they're not worried about the trainer either. But I found their "250" number to be a bit odd, especially since Tacx says 275. Given that in either case it would be the same frame in the trainer I'd love to know how they came up with that number.

Of course my bike frame has the same weight limit, which I'm over, but the only issue I've had is wheels. There was a rep from the manufacturer in the shop one day and he said it was all about the wheels. (I had already killed and replaced my stock wheels at this point.)

The only reason I'm concerned is that Wahoo seems to suggest that the trainer will stress the frame in some way that riding on the road will not. I can see how that may be true - side-to-side forces on the road cause the bike to rock, and when you're in the trainer I would guess the rear triangle has to take that force in a different way that normal.

But then again, Tacx is saying 275 is ok. And they're attaching to the frame in the exact same place, so I it makes me think this more a number that Wahoo pulled out of their backside. I talked to my shop, and they think that there's likely, worst case, a 20% tolerance in there that I'm well within, so they think I should just not worry. (But if I didn't worry what would I do? )
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Old 07-10-16, 10:05 PM
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To be honest, don't overthink it. It's what a lot of people do, especially new riders, but it's unnecessary. I could fill a book with all the urban myths I have busted personally with cycling and being overweight. I race road and track, and I push my equipment hard. But the only thing I've ever broken is a rear rim after 3 years of use, and consequently a spoke when I replaced that rim and cut corners and used the old spokes.

My first road bike I kept and it now lives permanently in my trainer. I've been training track sprint stuff on the trainer for around 5 years now. Countless full gas standing starts, rolling accelerations with 2000+ watts. It was a superlight aluminium frame and I was fully under the opinion I might break it when I was riding on the road. Then I was fully under the belief that it was going to die a catastrophic death in the trainer. That bike is now about 16 years old, with 9years under my original 140kg and down to 110kg backside (back up to 125kg now with poor diet combined with muscle building in the weights room). It flexes like hell but hasn't yet died. Unless you're going to be doing really bad things on the bike in the trainer, don't worry about the legal mumbo jumbo and just get on it and ride and keep fit.
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Old 07-11-16, 10:32 AM
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If you're "a bit" over (what, 10-20lbs?) I wouldn't worry. If "a bit" means 100lbs over, i'd be concerned.
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Old 07-11-16, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by JakiChan View Post
That's exactly the concern. I'm not worried about the trainer - I'm worried about the bike. As Wahoo puts it, they're not worried about the trainer either. But I found their "250" number to be a bit odd, especially since Tacx says 275. Given that in either case it would be the same frame in the trainer I'd love to know how they came up with that number.

Of course my bike frame has the same weight limit, which I'm over, but the only issue I've had is wheels. There was a rep from the manufacturer in the shop one day and he said it was all about the wheels. (I had already killed and replaced my stock wheels at this point.)

The only reason I'm concerned is that Wahoo seems to suggest that the trainer will stress the frame in some way that riding on the road will not. I can see how that may be true - side-to-side forces on the road cause the bike to rock, and when you're in the trainer I would guess the rear triangle has to take that force in a different way that normal.

But then again, Tacx is saying 275 is ok. And they're attaching to the frame in the exact same place, so I it makes me think this more a number that Wahoo pulled out of their backside. I talked to my shop, and they think that there's likely, worst case, a 20% tolerance in there that I'm well within, so they think I should just not worry. (But if I didn't worry what would I do? )
I think you may be comparing apples and oranges:
  • Wahoo states 250 lbs but is concerned about damage to the bike
  • Tacx states 275 lbs but I believe that is for the trainer.
Warnings usually are blanket statements that include an (engineering) safety factor as well as a lawyer safety factor. Think about the yellow warnings on the sides of step ladders...


Personally, I'd be concerned about the bike if it has a carbon fiber frame and installing it on the trainer means applying pressure on the CF that exceeds the stated limits. For example, many frames get their top tube crushed in bike repair stands.


As for the trainer itself, I have a Tacx Ironman, and my weight exceeds 275 lbs. No problem whatsoever.



Of course your mileage may vary, and someone else may have anecdotic evidence that contradicts me.
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Old 07-11-16, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
If you're "a bit" over (what, 10-20lbs?) I wouldn't worry. If "a bit" means 100lbs over, i'd be concerned.
I'm 285. So I'm 35 over. Not huge - within a usual 20% engineering tolerance.
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Old 09-09-16, 03:19 AM
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you have nothing to worry about...

Originally Posted by JakiChan View Post
I'm 285. So I'm 35 over. Not huge - within a usual 20% engineering tolerance.
I was 211kg (Jan) and I am now 189kg (Sept) and I use the KickR 4 times a week doing 1hr-2hr power based training programmes. I have a Specialized Allez frame on the trainer and I haven't had a problem. Of course this doesn't guarantee anything but it may give you some confidence.
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Old 09-09-16, 08:17 AM
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I couldn't afford the Wahoo Kickr, but at my 360 pounds I think I will stick to my BKool Pro smart trainer.

I was 396 when I started riding my BKool a couple years ago, and I haven't killed it yet (and I have tried).
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Old 09-29-16, 09:02 AM
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I have a wahoo kickr snap and 330 is not a problem for it.
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Old 09-29-16, 12:50 PM
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Good to see what kind of system loads are being placed on these trainers. I haven't jumped on one yet, but would probably consider one for the upcoming season for training. 265lbs currently.
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Old 09-29-16, 01:07 PM
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Just be aware of the side to side strain and don't be standing and swaying side to side.

When sitting and spinning, don't get so caught up in "sweatin to the eighties" that you start dancing side to side or up and down to the beat rather then cranking the pedals in circles to the beat.
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