Just received my new Fluid 2 trainer today and am anxious to get in some good indoor rides.. esp now given some of our latest weather! =)
I was wondering if anybody sees the value in potentially purchasing a "trainer tire" just so my regular tires don't get fried after all the grinding I'll be doing on it this winter. My question is does it really wear down quickly on the trainer? Should I even be concerned about this?
If any of you veteran cyclists out there can provide any thoughts on this it would be greatly appreciated.
I used my regular wheel/tire for years on my trainer with no ill effects. I bike outside during the winter so swapping out the tire is not an realistic option. However this year I set up the extra rear wheel from my new bike for the trainer using an old tire and cassette.
I have the Kurt Kinetic Road Machine and it's been eating my (normal) tire up. I have since learned that you have to have the flywheel dialed in just right (not so loose that the tire slides and it squeaks when you start hammering, but not so tight that it grinds away) to avoid that. To be safe, I just got a trainer tire from Vittorio. Conti makes a pretty good one, too, but I hear it's a b*tch to mount. Since I'm not tough like Kevin, I don't ride outdoors in the winter and don't have to bother with swapping tires/wheels regularly!
I use a Tacx trainer (like a Computrainer) and initially did not have a trainer tire and wore out my tire pretty badly. I then opted for the trainer tire and it works very well. It barely wears down and prevents slipping that I sometimes experienced on my regular tire. I would suggest it, it was about $40.
I have also heard that you should not use your break on a trainer, just let the wheel spin to a stop because breaking adds a lot of friction between the tire and the roller which increases the wear on your tire.
I have an old tire that I use for both the trainer and winter riding. I throw on my normal/good sets once the weather warms up and I can ride more regularly outside. You can pick up a new cheap tire at Performance bike for $10.
I also have an old wheel with cassette that I had planned on swapping with a wheel with good tires but the 30 seconds that it takes me to swap them out is 30 seconds of my life that I will never get back so that plan hasn't been
Implemented yet :)
I don't recommend using the set of tires that you plan to race with on the trainer. The trainer will make your tire more square over time.
When I first got my trainer, I wasn't aware of the damage they cause to tires, so quickly wore out my rear tire (i flatted twice on the first ride of the spring because the rear tire had gotten so thin)...then I bought a Vittoria training tire which has been great. No wear and no slippage. That said, it would have been cheaper to just use old tires on the rear wheel...in retrospect, I could have saved $50 doing that and actually put my stack of old tires to good use.
I bought the cheapest rear wheel and cassette I could find (~$70 on nashbar) and put a trainer tire on it (~$40) and thats what I use on my trainer. Sure you could just swap tires, but its a pain in the ass (trainer tires are really thick and hard to mount).
I could probably get away with swapping used tires on and off of my regular wheel, but practically it is so much easier to just change wheels, and that means I end up using the trainer more. Sometimes spending a little extra is worth it in convenience.
I replaced my tires this summer after a spectacular front tire blowout, and saved my old tires specifically so I could swap them out for trainer riding this winter. So far so good on the old tires.
On the trainer topic - I'm looking to buy one, and could use any recommendations you all may have. I'd like to keep the price manageable but also get something that will last more than one season.
I have the CycleOps Magneto. It's their mid-level trainer (I think the Fluid trainer is the high-end one). The only real difference I could tell when I tried them at the bike shop was the noise level, which is lower with the Fluid. At the time, the Fluid was a good bit more expensive, but perhaps the price has come down some.
The Magneto has been great--have had it for 3 seasons now and I haven't had any issues.
Continental trainer tires (usually orange in color) are about $40 and will last for numerous seasons if you take care to keep the tire properly inflated on your trainer and keep the trainer tension appropriately high against the tire. When you aren't riding, release the tension to preserve the tire integrity.
For trainers, I like the Powerbeam ones from Sairs but they will cost you. For cheaper trainers, the cyclops seems to be slighly quieter than the more expensive Kurt Kinetic. There is one other brand that many people rave about but I can't remember it off the top of my head.