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Kinetic by Kurt 2013 Road Machine Indoor Bicycle Trainer
|Price:||$349.00 & FREE Shipping. Details|
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- Versatile indoor bicycle trainer with leak-proof magnetic drive system and automatic resistance changes
- 6.25-pound flywheel offers a realistic, 15-second coastdown from 20 mph
- Measurable, repeatable workload with an authentic road feel
- Extra stable platform--even for stand-up riding
- Fits 22 to 29-inch wheels; unconditional lifetime warranty; lifetime crash replacement policy
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|Item Dimensions||23 x 9 x 23 inches|
|Item Weight||27 pounds|
|Shipping Weight||29.25 pounds|
The Kinetic Road Machine Rear Wheel Trainer features a smooth quiet resistance from 5-3000 watts, and 6.25 lb. freewheel for realistic coast down. Features: Smooth quiet resistance from 5-3000 watts 6.25 lb. Freewheel for realistic coast down Sealed fluid chamber with magnetically-coupled driveshaft Guaranteed not to leak Unconditional Lifetime warranty on frame and resistance unit Compatible with all bikes with 16" to 29" diameter wheels Optional small wheel adapter required for 16" to 22" wheels
The Kinetic Road Machine Indoor Bicycle Trainer
Perfect for sprints, intervals, and all-day cruising, the Kinetic Road Machine offers smooth, quiet resistance for indoor training. Like every Kinetic Trainer, the Road Machine operates with a 100% leak-proof, patented magnetic drive system. The power calibration gives you true outdoor simulation while the automatic resistance adjusts as you change speeds.
Real Road Feel with an Automatically Adjusting WorkloadWhen the rear wheel spins on a fluid trainer, an impeller rotates through liquid to create resistance and the resistance automatically increases with speed. The result is a smoother, quieter, more road-like experience. This is critical for any indoor cyclist--the faster you pedal the harder the workload gets, just like an outdoor ride.
Large 6.25 Flywheel
The Road Trainers 6.25-pound flywheel results in a smooth, road-like ride without altering the force curve. The flywheel delivers a realistic 15-second coast-down from 20 miles per hour.
Extra Stable Platform
With the trapezoidal leg design, the Road Trainer offers largest footprint of any trainer to keep power and motion focused on the flywheel. Even during hard, out-of-the-saddle pedaling, the ride remains rock steady.
Measurable and Repeatable Workload
Unlike other fluid trainers that lose resistance when the fluid is heated up, Kinetic Fluid Trainers use thermodynamically neutral liquid silicon to ensure a consistent, measurable and repeatable workload at all temperatures.
Low Operating Temperature
According to the laws of physics, energy is never lost or gained, but simply changes form. In the case of a fluid trainer, the energy of the spinning impeller inside the fluid chamber is converted into heat. Kinetic Fluid Trainers have been designed with 80 cast aluminum cooling fins to dissipate heat and provide the lowest operating temperature of any trainer.
Works with Specialty Bikes
The Road Trainer is fully compatible with wheels measuring from 22 to 29 inches (outside diameter), including bikes with flip-off skewers, breezer drops-outs, and nutted axles on track and BMX styling. A small wheel adapter is required for 16 to 21-inch wheels (sold separately).
Kinetic offers a 100 percent leakproof performance with a patented magnetic drive system that uses neodymium magnets to link the drive system together. This eliminates the problems caused when a physical drive shaft has to enter the fluid chamber--which means no need for O rings or seals that will eventually wear out and leak.
- 6.25-pound flywheel for 15-second coastdown from 20 mph
- Resistance from 5 to 3,000+ watts with power calibrated resistance unit
- Sealed fluid chamber with magnetically coupled driveshaft
- Thermodynamically neutral silicone resistance fluid
- 80 cooling fans to dissipate heat
- Guaranteed not to leak
- 2 1/8-inch roller reduces tire wear
- Fits 22 to 29-inch wheels (small wheel adapter required for 16 to 21-inch wheels)
- Unconditional lifetime warranty
- Lifetime crash replacement policy
Top Customer Reviews
I ordered this to replace an aging Minoura rim-drive style trainer. The Minoura was great from the standpoint of the rim drive, but the belt and other moving parts made it noisy (in my opinion) and the belt wore out pretty quick and was a PITA to replace. But overall it was a good trainer. I was hoping a fluid style trainer would be smoother and quieter.
After reading many reviews, I decided the Kurt Kinetic was the best option, and the additional flywheel would give the unit excellent feel. I knew the rear tire would take more abuse from this type of trainer, but I was willing to recycle some old tires to the task to get a quiet, smooth, road-like ride.
Unboxing, the product was perfect. The box opens fully, so you don't have that awkward issue of trying to figure out how to slide the Styrofoam out. I was pleased to find just a few simple parts inside. The assembly was a breeze - just mount the resistance unit with a single bolt, slide the spring onto the tension L-bolt, and screw on the adjustment knob. That's about it - takes all of three minutes to assemble and it's simple. On mine, I changed out the aluminum lug that holds the skewer on one side. Not sure why they don't do that by default, but it was simple as well.
The product itself is well built. The design is similar to many others with the folding legs. But the stance is a bit wider and the tubing larger in diameter. Also nice is how perfectly the skewer mounts fit onto the supplied skewer. You'll never worry about the bike slipping out of this unit. Both sides of the unit have screw-in and out adjustments, and one side has a quick-release, making putting the bike in and out super fast.
Once I got it up and running, the first thing I noticed is that this unit has excellent feel. The design, while simple, is very solid. The resistance unit has one rotating part and has excellent bearings. It spins smoothly and without any jiggle or looseness. And the large flywheel produces realistic pedal feel. I ordered the supplemental 12 lb flywheel but it doesn't arrive until next week. This should further improve the feel, but the unit does an excellent job right out of the box.
Now for the not-so-good stuff. I bought this unit hoping for something really smooth and quiet. But it's not at all quiet. It's not so much the absolute volume of the noise as the quality. The sound that comes out of this thing is higher-pitched and white noise in nature. It almost sounds like metal-on-metal with high-pitched fan type noise. I'll try to get a video and post it if I can edit this review later. But suffice it to say that my old trainer with its belts, pulleys, and many moving parts was quieter. That was a major disappointment! Update on 07/01/2013 - I have uploaded a short video with sound to demonstrate what this thing sounds like. And yes - it really does sound like that...reminds me of bearings going bad with no oil or a small jet engine. The video shows riding at a power output of around 225-250 watts and roughly 80-90 rpm pedal speed. Not sure what the gearing would translate to in terms of road speed, but let's say maybe 22-25 mph based on what gear ratio I was in at the time.
My other complaint is that this unit doesn't have quite enough resistance, nor does it have any adjustment for resistance. According to all the reviews I read before, fluid trainers simply increase their resistance as the wheel rotates faster. That's fine and exactly what I expected - but the problem here is that you have to run in nearly your top gear just to generate average resistance. And forget about sprinting... I'm a pretty good cyclist, not the best, but for comparison I bike the 112 mile portion of Ironman in a little over 5 hours. To do that typically requires an average power output of about 210-215 watts. My bike has an integrated power meter, so with this trainer I can tell you that 300-400 watts is approaching the upper end of what this unit can deliver. And to get those watts, you have to spin the bike's wheel pretty fast. And of course the faster you turn it, the more noise and vibration you create. I wish this unit developed the 200-250 watts I like to use at a much lower speed. If it did, it would be smoother and generate a lot less noise. At 250 watts, the Kinetic kicks up a lot of noise. Most of it appears to be coming from the fluid portion of the resistance unit, and more from either the tire/roller interface and the flywheel, although it's hard to tell exactly where while riding it. Hopefully my wife can get some up-close video and audio while I am using it that I can post later on.
I'm going to call in to customer service tomorrow - I suppose it's possible something is wrong with my unit. It's really that bad. But the feel of this model is superior enough to my old trainer that I might end up keeping it anyway. I gave it 4 stars because it really is well designed and a very solid unit and maybe I was overly optimistic that a fluid trainer really would be quiet. As long as you aren't a highly competitive rider and don't mind the significant white noise note this thing puts out, this model will probably exceed your expectations in every other area.
Update: I called Kurt customer service this morning about the noise levels. Gave the person the serial number and she said based on the number, the "new" unit I was sold was actually several years old. I guess it's been in a warehouse somewhere sitting around. So be aware - if you buy one there's no telling how old it actually is, even though technically it's "new in the box". She suggested I register and fill out a warranty claim, which I am doing now. She said the unit should be extremely quiet. I'll post additional updates as the warranty process proceeds.
Update 2: Kurt customer service/warranty was amazingly fast! I registered my product online, got an e-mail response back almost immediately saying they'd ship me a replacement resistance unit. Hopefully it will solve the noise issues. For the record, when I called, there were no phone prompts - a real live person picked up immediately. If you are debating on whether to spend a premium on this product, the customer service alone is worth it.
Update 07/01/2013: Today the extra 12 lb flywheel arrived. Installation was a snap - it fits neatly right over the stock flywheel and is precision milled to fit around it on the outside edges. It is secured in the center with a single screw with wings for tool-free installation. This flywheel is totally worth the extra cost - it makes this trainer ride almost exactly like the bike is on the road. Acceleration, "coasting", and pedal dynamics are dramatically improved. I also learned that this machine is very sensitive to how the feet make contact with the floor. Because you have to spin this unit SO fast to generate appropriate wattage levels, the flywheel is turning extremely fast, greatly exaggerating any imbalance issues. Anyway - once I got the new flywheel installed and started riding, I noticed some significant vibrations - so much so that my hands would have been numb by the end of my 90 minute training session. Playing with the unit, I noticed that one of the forward feet had a tiny amount of play in it. So I shimmed it up perfectly to remove every bit of play. The unit is sitting on a 2x2 foot ceramic tile floor laid over a concrete slab on the ground floor, so the floor its on is extremely solid. I think this helps - any softness in your floor is likely to allow vibrations to get out of control with this super-massive flywheel. But that's the price you pay for having a nice large mass - worth it IMO. Once I had all four feet perfectly even, the unit ran smooth as glass. A nice touch would be if this thing came with screw in and out leveling feet. It would be simple to add them, and you'd only need them on the front feet. As mentioned elsewhere, I've added a short video clip illustrating the sound/noise this thing kicks up. I'm still waiting on the replacement resistance unit that customer service is shipping - I'll update the review once that arrives.
- Quiet - not silent but bike makes more noise than the flywheel mechanism. I stream TV/Movies on my Kindle (plug :P) whilst riding.
- Smooth - having the right tension on the wheel is key (once touching I go (1) full turn)
- Spindown - with base flywheel spindown is very nice (e.g. you can pause your pedal without the wheel stopping)
- Durability - 4years and >1000 miles no issues
- Versatility - Easy to switch bikes out (now have (2) users in my house)
- You will sweat.. ALOT. Buy a mat and nice fan :)
BUT, I'm giving this 4 instead of 5 stars because of the company's customer service. I was somewhat shocked at their response to my inquires for help with a few questions concerning assembly (after searching online and downloading an instruction manual). Any company that feels it can rest solely on the laurels of their excellent product is missing huge opportunities. This will at some point catch up with them.
So, in closing, buy it but don't ever email "Erin" for help!!
The machine itself is awesome. It is very sturdy, heavy like it should be, well built, with some extra parts thrown in like a hub for your bike if the one on your bike doesn't fit the machine. The company did not need to do this, but it was appreciated because the bike's hub was incorrect for the machine. It is easy to set up, easy to take the bike on and off, has adjustable tension, and provides a great "riding" experience for those cold, wet days in the Pacific Northwest when we can't get outside.