5 Top Train­ers

Find the right ma­chine for your pain cave

Canadian Cycling Magazine - - RAPID FIRE - $1,130; $780 for Smart Con­trol unit only $399 $336 $810

If you need to “treat” your­self to a new trainer, check out these five ma­chines. They vary in their features, but each one will make your legs scream through­out the win­ter, so you can crush rides or races in the spring.

Kurt Ki­netic Rock and Roll – Smart Con­trol

Stac Zero

Black­burn Tech Mag 5 Trainer Kit

Cy­cleops Mag­nus

Of the five ma­chines tested, the Rock and Roll re­quired the most as­sem­bly. But putting it to­gether is a breeze: it’s eas­ier to as­sem­ble than Ikea fur­ni­ture, and has bet­ter in­struc­tions, too. If you’re fa­mil­iar with Kurt Ki­netic, you’ll rec­og­nize the Rock and Roll plat­form. The new com­po­nent is the Smart Con­trol power unit, which works with the Ki­netic Fit app so you can train with power. (If you al­ready have a Rock and Roll or Road Ma­chine, you can add the new re­sis­tance unit to each.) Con­nect­ing Smart Con­trol to an IOS de­vice via Blue­tooth Smart is easy, as is cal­i­brat­ing: you sim­ply spin up to 32 km/h and spin down. The power num­bers dis­played through the app tracked closely with data from my Pi­o­neer power me­ter. Once you’re set up, you can dive into the Ki­netic Fit train­ing pro­gram, as I did, or patch into Zwift or Train­erroad. That rocks, no? ( Andrew Buck­rell, a triath­lete from Water­loo, Ont., de­signed the Stac Zero trainer when he should have been work­ing on his PHD in me­chan­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing. His pro­cras­ti­nat­ing has led to a silent trainer. When you use this trainer, the only sounds you hear come from your bike or you. You set a caliper with a mag­net on each end around the brake track of your back wheel. The mag­nets cre­ate swirling elec­tric fields, called eddy cur­rents, which form within a con­duc­tor, in this case, the alu­minum rim or brake track of your wheel (car­bon won’t work here). When the wheel spins through this mag­netic field, there’s re­sis­tance. Put the calipers re­ally close to the rim and the re­sis­tance can be fierce. You can leave your road tire on be­cause it doesn’t come in contact with any­thing. You do, how­ever, need to af­fix two weights to your wheel to en­sure a bet­ter road feel. I’d say at­tach­ing the weights is less oner­ous than a tire change. It’s an ele­gant and quiet sys­tem. (

With the Black­burn Tech Mag 5’s five­po­si­tion re­mote at­tached to your han­dle­bars, you can in­crease or de­crease re­sis­tance as you pedal. This fea­ture is great for cre­at­ing a harder work­out on a bike with low gear­ing, such as a moun­tain bike or cy­clocross bike. The full kit comes with a mat to pro­tect your floor and a front-wheel riser. ( The new Mag­nus trainer from Cy­cleops pro­vides you with elec­tro­mag­netic re­sis­tance for your train­ing rides, 1,500 W at its peak, in fact. It re­lies on Pow­er­tap tech­nol­ogy for power read­ings. ANT+ and Blue­tooth 4.0 let you patch data into your head unit or smart­phone. The Mag­nus pairs with Cy­cleops Vir­tu­al­train­ing or other plat­forms, such as Zwift and Train­erroad, that help to bring the out­doors inside. ( The Cy­clotron Fluid Comp comes out of its box ready to go. The al­loy ma­chine is hefty, while its tool­ing is very pre­cise. It has the smoothest skewer clamps of the bunch. Once you get rolling, the trainer can pro­vide 2,000 W of re­sis­tance. The 17.6 lb. fly­wheel cre­ates ex­cel­lent road feel. The unit ships with a front-wheel riser. (

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