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zwift - 9 speed vs 11 speed on the smart trainer?

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zwift - 9 speed vs 11 speed on the smart trainer?

Old 05-12-21, 04:35 PM
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PRainC
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zwift - 9 speed vs 11 speed on the smart trainer?

I got a used taxc neo and decided to put my old 9 speed bike on it. Is it a disadvantage or are there negatives of using a 9 speed bike vs 11 speed on zwift (or other virtual/training ride apps)?
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Old 05-12-21, 08:46 PM
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no other than lacking a couple gears
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Old 05-12-21, 09:26 PM
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assume you have a 9 speed cassette installed on the tacx, you do, don't you? i run an 8 speed and it is just like...an 8 speed.
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Old 05-13-21, 12:22 AM
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number of speeds don't matter. it's all about the watts. 200w with a 38/30 is the same to the trainer (and to zwift er what have you) as 200w with a 52/11. Your cadence and torque may be different, but the trainer don't care.
(fwiw, I go back and forth between an 11sp and 8spd. the workouts hurt all the same)

now, your jumps in cadence are more noticeable with fewer cogs, just like outside....
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Old 05-13-21, 08:02 AM
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zwift's "trainer difficulty" setting makes the number of gears less important. I don't think that's a good name for the setting, but I'm not sure I have a better name that would make sense to people
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Old 05-13-21, 06:23 PM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
zwift's "trainer difficulty" setting makes the number of gears less important. I don't think that's a good name for the setting, but I'm not sure I have a better name that would make sense to people
Resistance scaling?

Agreed though.
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Old 05-16-21, 11:59 PM
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Yeah, 9 speed cassette installed on the tacx neos. Based on everyone's response, I guess it doesn't matter - since it seems to be about the watts for the trainer. Thanks guys for the explanation!

Last edited by PRainC; 05-19-21 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 05-17-21, 12:03 PM
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Makes no difference, if you are like me, you'll spend 95% of your ride time in the same gear.
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Old 05-17-21, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by afm199 View Post
Makes no difference, if you are like me, you'll spend 95% of your ride time in the same gear.
do you not climb? I was shifting on zwift like I shift in the real world.
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Old 05-17-21, 03:37 PM
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Itís best to use the same gearing as your road bike. That is if you wish to transfer your indoor training toyour outdoor rides. I found this out this year. I have a Kickr bike so I can have any type of gearing I want. But my real world bike is a vintage bike with a 6 speed cassette. I was riding 12 speed indoors and a wide range of gearing I didnít have on my road bike. When needless to say it didnít help on my outdoor riding. So I matched the gearing and now I have a better understanding of what I am donít as far as how it will transfer to the real world.
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Old 05-17-21, 07:12 PM
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That hasn't been my experience. There definitely is some specificity, but I don't think having the same gears makes much difference.

The big thing I noticed was the year I did all my hard efforts on the trainer while standing. Climbing steep hills while sitting wasn't great that year.
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Old 05-17-21, 07:59 PM
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Hmm... there seem to be some ambiguity. If I put out 200watts of power, how does this associate with cadence? (Probably should google around in more in-depth on both Tacx Neo and Zwift regarding gearing....)
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Old 05-18-21, 03:50 PM
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Would depend on what gear you are in, no? Generally more power means more rpm.
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Old 05-18-21, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by PRainC View Post
Hmm... there seem to be some ambiguity. If I put out 200watts of power, how does this associate with cadence? (Probably should google around in more in-depth on both Tacx Neo and Zwift regarding gearing....)
higher cadence will mean lower torque to generate 200w. Watts is a measure of work, not torque...

here are a couple calculators to play with: Watt ? Speed ? Cadence ? Gear calculators ? Cycling Guy ? Cycling Events ? Cycling training tips
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Old 05-19-21, 08:18 AM
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Gearing is irrelevant if you run your trainer in ERG mode, which will let the trainer automatically adjust the resistance to match a specific output (watts).
ERG mode is good for structured workouts and you should not be shifting at all when using it. Just pick a gear in the middle and let the trainer decide how hard the resistance should be. In this case - 9 speed vs 10 or 11 speed has zero impact.

I also like to free-ride in Zwift, and when doing that I run the trainer difficulty at it's max setting so that the hills/descents are simulated closer to reality. In this setup, I am shifting through all of my gears on most rides and using the full range of my cassette. In this situation - 9 speed is going to have the same downsides in Zwift compared to 10 or 11 speed that you would find in real life. Larger gaps between gears would be the most notable downside.
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