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Looking For An Indoor Trainer?

By Levi Bloom on 12/17/05

I know I need an indoor trainer so I can ride in the winter. Yes, it will be boring, but it'll be better than riding the crappy stationary bike in the gym.

As I'm writing this part of the article, I don't have an indoor trainer, but I plan to have one by the end of the article. (And I will because the article won't be finished till I have a trainer ;)

This article will be written in parts, starting with deciding to get an indoor trainer, and ending with purchasing an indoor trainer. And so the saga begins...

Part I

This post is the first part in a potentially long saga, so be prepared. I've been looking at indoor trainers for a while now, and I think I'll get a road bike this year, so hopefully all of my research will pay off. At first, I was sold on the Cycleops Fluid 2, but that changed whenever I found out about the 1UpUSA trainer. (See www.1upusa.com)

I think I first heard about it in the Road Bike Rider e-zine. (Check out www.roadbikerider.com)

Then I checked out www.mtbreview.com, and it had an astounding 4.78 (5 possible) rating! And from 67 reviews! The other top brands have only about 40 reviews giving about a 4.26 rating.

I made a big discovery in the next phase of my journey.

It was brought to my attention that 1UpUSA is a relatively unknown company compared to Cycleops or the Kurt Kinetic trainers, yet they had so many more reviews on mtbreview.com. Suspicious? Maybe.

I checked out the reviews and it seems that they are all unique. One possible explanation is that 1UpUSA gives a card that says "Please rate our product on mtbreview.com" to each customer. If they do that, that's a great idea. If they don't, maybe they should look into it.

So I decided to e-mail the company. I asked them about the situation to get their take on it. (I e-mailed them Thursday night, and got a reply Friday morning!) They reasoned that when a "typical person uses a great product, they naturally want to talk about it." Sounds good to me.

Now I know that at least their customer service is amazing! (The lifetime guarantee doesn't hurt, either) I'm definitely looking into the trainer for this summer or fall.

To be continued...

Part II

I bought a trainer. That cheap one from Supergo. It lasted me a month or so. Now it makes a horrid noise that no one should have to endure! So if you're looking at the Aireon Mag 33, forget about it. (However, if you just want it for bike fitting, it's worth the $55.)

My new plan: Get some rollers! Trainers suck!

Part III

I got some Performance Technique alloy rollers. They rule! Rollers aren't so bad - they took me 5 minutes to learn. After a week I can stand on them and ride one handed comfortably.

You get a mental workout too. It takes some pretty good concentration to stay on them. If you zone out, you're done.

More good news...

Supergo said I could send back the trainer, so I did. And they credited my credit card for about $63. That was about the equivalent of the retail price I paid plus what it cost me to ship it back to them. So for the month or two I got to use it, it cost me about $20. Not bad at all.

Supergo is cool in my book.

(I probably won't be buying a new trainer anytime soon. I can get a really good workout on my rollers; actually, the rollers have more resistance than my mag trainer did.)

 

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