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I just got one of those indoor bike trainers. You know, the kind that props up the rear wheel against a heavy, resistance-providing wheel. The front of the bike rests on the floor, the rear axle is pinned, and there’s no balancing required. I didn’t think of it at first, but that’s not really how you ride a bike in real life, and therefore must not be good enough for athletes training for more than just a good indoor cardio workout. Instructables user pennachi1 created this indoor cycling rig that lets you actually ride your bike the way you would outside. Looks a little scary to me, but I’m informed it “works fantastically!”

Becky Stern

Becky Stern is head of wearable electronics at Adafruit Industries. Her personal site: sternlab.org


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Comments

  1. relawson says:

    I don’t find too many things that make me feel uneasy, but the entire time I watched that video I felt very unbalanced for some reason.

    I’ve always thought about something like this and if it would even work at all!

    How would one more roller on top to provide friction affect the dynamics? obviously the lower ones can’t have the resistance… else you ride off of the rig entirely :)

    1. Wilson! says:

      The rear wheel is supported by two rollers, so it’s trapped, and you don’t “ride off the rig.” The front roller is driven by a belt from the rear roller(s) to provide spin to the front wheel. With proper balance, no additional support is required. (now, if the rollers suddenly seized up, you might launch forward, although I don’t want to be the guinea pig on that)

  2. Chris says:

    The set of three rollers he’s riding on are a standard product (usually just called “rollers” by cyclists). The new part is that he’s put wheels on the base of the black roller frame so it can move forwards and backwards.

    Generally riding rollers can be very bouncy and you want to have a very smooth pedalling stroke, and riding out of the saddle isn’t usually an option. So this modification probably does make the ride much more realistic – the only downside might be that the ‘bounciness’ of rollers is often seen as an excellent way to improve your pedalling stroke by forcing you to smooth out your power to the pedals.

    But who cares – it looks *awesome* and I still want to try it!