Stable frame with 6 contact points and leveling feet
7-pound flywheel for super smoothness
Fluid resistance unit feels like riding outside
Oversized 60mm-diameter roller means even more smoothness
More adjustable than most trainers
Simple screw-type roller tensioning
Swinging extra leg can pinch fingers when folding – Ouch!
Updated version here: https://amzn.to/2qvrp06
Source: Company website
How obtained: Sample from company
RBR Sponsor: No
Tested: 10 hours
Stable, Smooth, Quiet Ride and Quality Construction
Indoor trainers are great for when it’s too wet, cold or dark to ride outside. You can also take them to events or races for warming up much more efficiently and quickly by avoiding the cooling effect of the wind when you’re really riding — and any risk of flatting, too. They also let you do things like read or watch television while riding.
But, the best thing about these ingenious devices, and the reason why even professional racers ride them a lot, is because they let you control exactly how easy or hard a workout is. And getting your training just right is one of the most important secrets of reaching your cycling goals.
It’s kind of funny for me to write those words, because only a few years ago, I would have told you I can’t stand to spend more than an hour on the “nowhere bike.” But, our team coach Mark Edwards urged us to start regular focused trainer workouts, and we almost immediately started seeing improvements we hadn’t seen when we were mainly riding outdoors.
The first benefit is that trainers force you to keep pedaling since you can’t coast, with no hills or momentum. And, you feel resistance throughout the pedal stroke on a trainer so it forces you to even out your pedaling. While it takes a while, these things improve your pedaling efficiency, which directly translates into more power on the road.
But, as I mentioned, what’s even more important is that you can monitor your efforts very precisely with tools like a heart rate monitor, a power meter or even just a speedometer, and ensure that you’re doing the right amount of training to achieve your cycling goals. This works both when you’re pushing the pace and also when you’re spinning on an easy recovery day. Try to go easy outside and you can easily forget and end up chasing after a friend.
CycleTEK’s Momentum 1
However, getting the most out of trainer riding requires a nice indoor trainer, like CycleTEK’s Momentum 1, which I’ve been riding and enjoying. It features a heavy-duty oversized welded-steel frame with a unique feature. It has an extra support arm That’s about 22-inches across and has four feet on it, so that the trainer stands on six, instead of the typical four feet you find on other units.
The feet are hexagonally shaped and rotate for leveling the Momentum on uneven floors, like what’s in my garage. It all adds up to a strong, stable pedaling platform ready for anything you want to do on it, even standing and sprinting.
Adaptable and adjustable
Part of the stability comes from the ability to set up the Momentum however you want it. It comes with two types of axle end caps, which is a nice detail I haven’t seen before. You choose whichever one works best for the quick release on your bike. Like most trainers, this one comes with its own QR you can use, too. But, if you want to use a different type, there’s a good chance you’llhave the right end to hold it with the CycleTEK’s two cap types.
Also, there’s plenty of left-to-right adjustment for centering the rear wheel on the roller. I’ve noticed on some trainers that you can’t always center the tire, which can create a feeling of imbalance. So, it was nice to see how the Momentum can be dialed in for almost any bicycle or rear wheel.
Smooth and quiet spinning
The CycleTEK has what the company describes as a “thermodynamically neutral silicone-filled resistance unit with secure seal technology.” Which means that it’s a fluid resistance unit that won’t change resistance due to heat, or the amount of time you’ve ridden, or how hard you’re riding. Fluid resistance units like this most closely resemble riding outdoors because they ramp up the resistance at the same rate as wind resistance increases outdoors.
Then, to ensure an even more road-like feel, the resistance unit is turned by an oversized 60mm-diameter roller, and there’s a 7-pound flywheel that keeps your pedal stroke as smooth as possible. You might think that the flywheel would make it too easy to pedal, but it only smooths the pedaling; it doesn’t make workouts any easier.
Because I ride so much indoors, I have some high-tech trainers, so I’m a little spoiled. The CycleTEK could be even better with a more quick-releasing clamp for loading your bike and for the roller, which are features I’ve gotten used to on my trainers.
You do get a quick release for loading your bike, but you have to tighten/loosen a lockring to secure the setting, and that extra step shouldn’t be necessary.
And one of the most common trainer issues is the rear tire slipping on the roller. When you have to tighten the roller with a threaded knob, you have to check your setting, which is another step required when putting your bike on the trainer. It’s easier with a simple on/off roller setting, as the setting is always the same that way.
You might never notice these things unless, like me, you take your trainer to races and a few seconds here and there can make the difference between making or missing your race start. But I wanted to point them out if That’s how you will use the trainer.
Overall, I’m impressed with the Momentum 1’s stable, smooth, quiet ride and the quality construction that looks like it’ll hold up to years of use. I also like the ample adjustments. It comes with an unconditional lifetime warranty and a lifetime guarantee against the resistance unit leaking.
Jim Langley is RBR’s Technical Editor. He has been a pro mechanic and cycling writer for more than 40 years. He’s the author of Your Home Bicycle Workshop in the RBR eBookstore. Check out his “cycling aficionado” website at http://www.jimlangley.net, his Q&A blog and updates at Twitter. Jim’s streak of consecutive cycling days has reached more than 8,000. Click to read Jim’s full bio.