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I ride in circles..
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have the Performance Travel Trac Aluminum rollers. They work well but I've gotten strong enough that now they don't give me nearly enough resistance to do a harder workout. Unless I want to use my biggest gear and spin at 130+ rpm.. Which isn't very fun.

I already run 25mm tires and I ride at 80psi.. don't dare running any lower than that though.

I'm looking for suggestions on increasing the amount of resistance. Something I can fab up on my own. Ideally I don't want something that will bring me to a grinding halt either. I have a mag fluid trainer for serious workouts.. Just trying to get a little more out of these rollers instead of buying a whole new set.
 

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I am in the same sort of boat as you.. Tried everything that my brain could come up with :p so now I just sit on and pedal with one leg and swap after a few minutes.

Started to master standing up whilst riding on them as well and it seems a lot harder than you think.

See if you have a friend who wants to buy yours and get some new ones with resistance...going cheap atm on all the www. sites.
 

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tober1 said:
I've heard of people putting towels under the back wheel.
what about the static that you generate from it?

I fried my ipod cause i used to have a towel under my rollers to stop me dripping on the tiles..Had my Ipod in my hand to change songs and had to grab the window frame because of not paying enough attention....that ZAP.....Gone!! :-(
 

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ETWN Stu said:
what about the static that you generate from it?

I fried my ipod cause i used to have a towel under my rollers to stop me dripping on the tiles..Had my Ipod in my hand to change songs and had to grab the window frame because of not paying enough attention....that ZAP.....Gone!! :-(
I call BS. If your towel was just laid on the floor to catch sweet it most likely was not even touching the rollers anyways.

I have ridden this way many times and never gotten off the bike and shocked anything. My mp3 player is still working fine too. Maybe it has something to due with the fact that my tires are made from rubber.
 

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I ride in circles..
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
OOO I like the towel idea! I'll have to try it for sure.

My biggest gear is 53x11 I believe.
I did an hour today and in that combo I was able to crank out 44mph with a cadence of 129.. It was enough to hit my max heart rate but only because I had already done 5 minutes above 175HR and another 5 minutes over 185HR. Pegging myself at 201 for a few seconds.

I can manage whirling a cadence of 135 but I feel like I'm going to go flying off to the mother ship.

I would like to be able to do more intervals on my rollers because I really get sick of my trainer.
 

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I ride in circles..
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Phew... just a little bit of towel goes a long way. Only need a little friction to add a lot of resistance. I had to drop to my granny gear to turn the damn cranks. I doubt Cav could spin the cranks with enough towel under the rollers!

Only problem is that you lose all of your momentum.. Which sucks bad enough on rollers.
 

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I'd advise against riding at lower tire pressures. Rollers are a great way to blow out a clincher at low pressure. If anything, you want a little bit higher pressure. Rollers are first and foremost for developing leg speed (and of course for warming up at events). I'd second the recommendation on TruTrainers -- I've tried all the brands and TruTrainers are the only ones with really lifelike and smooth resistance. If you get Kreitlers, the windtrainer is noisy and clutzy. Kreitler makes some flywheels that fit on the rear-most roller, but they are not the quality you'd expect and they don't work all that well. If you are mechanically inclined, run a belt from your rear roller to a resistance unit you cobble up from a regular rear-wheel trainer. That can work quite well, and you can fashion a little adjustable roller to modulate resistance from the trainer mechanism to the roller. Trainers are frankly just better if you want a high-resistance workout and don't have a TruTrainer. And even contrived road riding -- such as repeats on a well-lit hill at night or whatever -- is better than a trainer for most people.
 

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I ride in circles..
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for the ideas. I understand that rollers aren't meant for high resistance training or max effort intervals. I'm just trying to squeeze a little more out of them. The towel might work sometimes. Eventually I might upgrade to better rollers but in the end if I want to max out with some serious resistance I'll just use my stationary trainer instead.
 

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Skepticynisism
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Assuming you are creating enough friction to add a decent amount of resistance to the system, wouldn't a towel get hotter than Hell after a little while? That energy has to go somewhere, right? A towel doesn't strike me as a very efficient heat sink.
 

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QuattroCreep said:
I call BS. If your towel was just laid on the floor to catch sweet it most likely was not even touching the rollers anyways.

I have ridden this way many times and never gotten off the bike and shocked anything. My mp3 player is still working fine too. Maybe it has something to due with the fact that my tires are made from rubber.
Ok I am no genius when it comes to static electricity, but I am also not in the business of “BS” either. Here is my set up of my bike that I use on the rollers and after I swapped the towel for a piece of Vinyl it stopped. Note that the window frame is aluminium and not wood.

Yes my tires are rubber one too: Gator Skins.
Wheels round: Fulcrum Racing 1s
Frame: Scapin R8 (steel)
Groupo: 11 speed Campagnolo Chorus
Saddle: SMP Evolution.
Seat post: Selcof.
Bars: Ritchey Classic WCS carbon.
Stem: Ritchey WCS Carbon.
Pedals: Speedplay zero.
Shoes: Sidi Ergo 2.
Rollers: Tacx Antares rollers
Ipod: Fried but works every now and again.
Age 34: Don't care much for BS
 

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Buzzard said:
Assuming you are creating enough friction to add a decent amount of resistance to the system, wouldn't a towel get hotter than Hell after a little while? That energy has to go somewhere, right? A towel doesn't strike me as a very efficient heat sink.
Yes, the flames as it burns are intended to heat your saddle and cause you to work harder.

The bigger problem is that you have to have quite a bit of pressure or load on the roller drum. So if the drum suddenly grabs the towel and brings it up into the wheel, you have a towel suddenly twisted up in your fork or rear triangle. It can be ugly.

I don't really recommend this approach. I've seen lots of people try it. It's not at all reproducible in resistance and it has caused more than its share of nasty roller crashes.

As our resident physicist Buzzard has pointed out, any resistance will create a lot of heat. Even a remote unit like the Kreitler wind unit will heat up its band quite a bit from resistance on the roller drum. If it isn't engineered in properly up front, it probably won't make you happy.
 

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11.4 said:
I'd advise against riding at lower tire pressures. Rollers are a great way to blow out a clincher at low pressure.
I guess I have been the most lucky man alive every time I've been on the rollers then.
Why would you blow out a clincher on rollers at low pressure?
 

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I ride in circles..
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I have my tires down to around 65psi right now and they're not bottoming by any means. They're a little squirrely though so it's takes me effort. Going to pump them back to 80.. No reason to stress the sidewalls of expensive GP4000 tires for a few extra watts.

I don't think a roller could ever catch a towel on fire.. unless it was a negative humidity day. Someone please prove me wrong on this.. make sure you video tape it. Thanks;)
 

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I HAD to revive this thread because I want to see a vid of someone catching a towel on fire with rollers. I'll freakin rep you and all that.


I know I killed a kitten reviving this thread, but it seems to me that if you just take Al rollers and create an eddy current brake with magnets placed bellow the rollers, you get your resistance without the towel fire. (I really want to see that towel fire) I also do not believe I'm the only person who would have thought of this
 
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