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Monday, January 21, 2008

A CycleOps Flops

Things have not been good lately. I have had less time on a bike in the last two weeks than anytime I can remember in the last year or so. Weather, equipment, and (mainly) time have conspired against me to force me into a mid-January break.

When the weather and time begins to keep me off the road, I have turned to my CycleOps trainer to save the day. Unfortunately, my trainer broke about three weeks ago. At first it didn't bother me because I was able to get some miles in outdoors. The next week after that, I just hung on while I went about getting a new one. Now, I am still waiting.

I called today to see if it had come in, but forgot that the mail (it was shipped USPS) didn't run because it is MLK Day. This sent me down to the basement to figure out someway to get that thing up and running again!

The problem is with a yellow handle - that you can see in the picture above. Turns out I'm not the first person to have this thing break and there is actually an upgrade you can purchase for about 20 bucks. Thanks to Stephen for sharing in my misery and sending me the link.

The handle is used like the handle-cam on your quick release skewer. Once you get an amount of tension, you lock down the handle and it adds that little extra and then locks down. The problem is that it is plastic and the forces applied on it cause it to fail.

So, what I have done is tighten the threads down as far as I can and then shoved an old stylus from a hand held computer into the remaining gap. Not perfect, but it does give me enough tension that I think I can get a reasonable spinning session in.

Hopefully tomorrow the real deal with arrive. I'll put it on and I'm sure it will break after some time. Then I'll just get one of those upgrade kits.

Don't get me wrong. I have loved my trainer. It is fluid and solid. I've done some pretty all out sprints on that thing and it has held my bike firm. My only beef is with the poorly designed handle.


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