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Trainer vs Roller Question

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Trainer vs Roller Question

Old 04-08-08, 06:54 PM
  #1  
steppinthefunk 
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Trainer vs Roller Question

Performance is currently having a sale on trainers and rollers and I can't decide which to get. I really want to try rollers but I'm sure my wife will freak out if she see's me struggling with them - and once I fall I'm sure she will force me to return them.

I was wondering though, has anyone ever tried taking out the front roller and replace it with a riser block? I figure the tricky part with using rollers is stabilizing the front wheel. But with a riser block in place the front would be automatically stabilized. The only problem is, will the rear wheel generate enough gyrating motion to keep the bike upright.

If this would work I could have the best of both worlds and use the full set of rollers while the wife is not around.

*I am aware that there are some rollers that offer an attachment for mounting the front fork but I thought I would ask to see if this method would work as well.

Thanks,
Jason
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Old 04-08-08, 07:07 PM
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Unless your considerably older or have a disability, I don't see why your wife would be so paranoid. Riding on the road (here in L.A. anyway) is way more dangerous than riding on rollers in my living room. Practice up against a doorway and you'll be fine. Takes a couple days if you mess around for 10 minutes each day to get the hang of it or an hour if your determined to figure it out.

If its that big of a deal, just get a trainer. They are both boring anyway.
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Old 04-08-08, 07:16 PM
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I'm a total ****z and it took me 5 minutes to get the hang of it. Start in a doorway or somewhere you can hold onto something to get going.

The only time I ever fell off is when my wife snuck up behind me while is was on them. I milked that one for months.
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Old 04-08-08, 07:21 PM
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Whats the point of the roller if your going to pull the front cylinder. You might as well get a trainer.
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Old 04-08-08, 07:22 PM
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I'm sure you could rig something up but rollers are purpose-built for keeping the bike upright. Deviating from their design would probably only make the stability that much worse.

I can confirm, though, that learning how to ride the rollers takes a little commitment and no more than 20 minutes. At worst, it will take an hour or two to get accustomed to the feel of having no fore and aft movement, but even that isn't a big deal.
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Old 04-08-08, 07:42 PM
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Originally Posted by steppinthefunk View Post
... I was wondering though, has anyone ever tried taking out the front roller and replace it with a riser block? I figure the tricky part with using rollers is stabilizing the front wheel. But with a riser block in place the front would be automatically stabilized. The only problem is, will the rear wheel generate enough gyrating motion to keep the bike upright. ...
Thanks,
Jason
The the gyroscopic effect created by the spinning front wheel is a major factor in the ability to balance on rollers in the first place. Thus if you rest the front wheel on a block (not, as you mention, the alternative of mounts that the fork is locked into), balancing will be more difficult. In addition, with the front wheel spinning on the roller you are able to gently steer left and right, helping to stay balanced. There is a reason the front roller is spun by a belt around the forward roller driven by the rear wheel.

If you can set up your rollers so that you are centered in a door frame, you practically can not fall over. If you add some casters to the front roller, you will not be able to steer off the front roller. See the homemade free motion rollers on these forums HERE. You can see these in action on several YouTube videos LINK and related videos at the link. These are DIY versions of the nice but expensive eMotion rollers.

Tell your wife when you get good on the rollers, you can do THIS. Matchew demonstrates how your wife can even ride with you on the rollers.
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Old 04-08-08, 07:49 PM
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Who wears the pants here?
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Old 04-08-08, 07:50 PM
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If you decide to get rollers, don't use them with new tires. Use your tires out on the road for a couple of hours minimum first before they get on the rollers. Some tires have a slippery coating (rubber protectant) when new. I learned this lesson the hard way.

Last edited by Sprocket Man; 04-08-08 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 04-08-08, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Sprocket Man View Post
If you decide to get rollers, don't use them with new tires. Use your tires out on the road for a couple of hours minimum first before they get on the rollers. Some tires have a slippery coating (rubber protectant) when new. I learned this lesson the hard way.
A couple scuff's with some 200grit sandpaper on a sanding block or by hand can take care of that if conditions just don't allow you to break in a new tire.

I ride rollers exclusively and year round, wouldn't have it any other way.
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Old 04-08-08, 09:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Giro View Post
Tell your wife when you get good on the rollers, you can do THIS. Matchew demonstrates how your wife can even ride with you on the rollers.
OK, he really needs to clean his house, that's just nasty.
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Old 04-08-08, 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by wfrogge View Post
Who wears the pants here?
I would edit that to 'bike shorts', but +1 on the sentiment!
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Old 04-08-08, 09:47 PM
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I had a trainer before but I did not like it at all. I like to ride outside or not ride at all. Besides warming up before a race like the pros, I have yet tried.
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Old 04-09-08, 04:14 AM
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Fork mount "trainers".

The reason why you don't see them anymore is all the people who ruined headsets over a winter of training. ALL trainers used to be fork mount, but then everyone grudgingly replaced their headsets every spring. Fork mount trainers put an undue amount of stress on the headset bearings because in normal use the fork can flex back and forth relative to the bearings. When you lock the fork in place, all your force goes into trying to ruin the bearings instead.

If you want to get stronger, get a trainer.

If you need to get smoother, get rollers (and learn to ride them).

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Old 04-09-08, 06:02 AM
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If you want to get stronger, get a trainer.

If you need to get smoother, get rollers (and learn to ride them).
This was my general thought too..that rollers and trainers tend to have different end results.
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Old 04-09-08, 06:28 AM
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First off, tell your wife to HTFU :-)

And do you mean something like this?

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Old 04-09-08, 06:40 AM
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Thanks for the replies so far!

Originally Posted by derath View Post
First off, tell your wife to HTFU :-)

And do you mean something like this?

That was my fourth option (option 1 = trainer, option 2 = rollers, option 3 = rollers with front roller replaced with riser block)

Anyway, I've decided that I'm going to go ahead and try the rollers.

These look like they might do the trick (see below). At $159.00 they have foot steps and front wheel guards that look like they might make things a bit easier.
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Old 04-09-08, 06:48 AM
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I have those minoura rollers. They are really nice for the money. Rollers make indoor training a little bit more exciting. I really want to try and make own free motion rollers though. Now that would be exciting!
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Old 04-09-08, 07:38 AM
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Dont sweat it. You'll be an expert within 10 min. My wife got me the Performance Technique rollers for xmas. They're a pretty nice set for the money. I've ridden off them once and that was after some pretty instense VO2 max intervals. I ride mine next to my Wieder weight bench/squat rack. I use the vertical on the rack as my crutch. I stand up on mine, reach for bottles, fool with the TV remote, talk on the cell phone etc, all the time with no problem. That one time i did ride off, i was sitting down.

My advice is to not set them up where you could damage something you dont want damaged. Keep them in the basement on a hard cement floor.
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Old 04-09-08, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Giro View Post
Tell your wife when you get good on the rollers, you can do THIS. Matchew demonstrates how your wife can even ride with you on the rollers.

LOL who does a trackstand on rollers.
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Old 04-09-08, 08:02 AM
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Rollers will teach you to be a smooth rider.. on rollers


Get a high quality trainer like the KK and be done with it.
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Old 04-09-08, 11:14 AM
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I have both, and they are good for different things. If I had to choose one, I would choose the trainer, even though the fun factor is -0. The fear of falling makes the rollers that much more interesting +0, but for specific training the trainer is hard to beat.
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Old 04-09-08, 05:02 PM
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Rollers with a mag unit.....NO NEED FOR A BORING TRAINER!!!
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Old 04-09-08, 05:14 PM
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I think the best trainer is an Tacx imagic or Fortius
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Old 04-09-08, 05:47 PM
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Get a Kurt Kinetic, especially the pro version of the road machine, with the 18 lbs of flywheel. They are cool, very realistic ride. The guy who I got a bike fit from in January had one, it was really nice. I just ordered one (with the rock and roll frame)for myself, I have to ride inside for a couple of months after a neck fusion, I can't wait to get it, should be here Friday. I still love my rollers, but if I had to choose one, a really nice trainer would be it.
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