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Roller help (!)(4 posts)

Roller help (!)cking17
Jul 27, 2002 4:35 PM
Just purchased & setup a new set of Tacx rollers. The rollers are nice but come with only basic assembly directions and no riding tips. Both tires slide from side to side like I'm riding on ice and there is no way I can let go of the chair next to me without almost crashing in a few seconds. Questions:

1. What tire pressure do you normally run on rollers? My road tires are at 110 psi.

2. My front tire's axle is just slightly behind the center of the front roller axle. Is this a good position for the front roller? I experimented with a few positions and the bike seems to stay on the rollers with no problems. The rear rollers are set to where the instructions show and the rear tire stays put with no problem.

3. Any other advice? I've heard you should practice in a doorway or next to a wall until you can keep your balance, however I'm sliding around so much I figure something is wrong with the setup. The rollers were tightened snug (not over-tighented). I noticed if you tighten the nuts too tight that hold on the rollers, the rollers will not spin well. I backed out the nut so that the roller would spin 10 times or so when you quickly spin it with your hand. Maybe back out the nut a bit more?

Thanks for any help!
re: Roller help (!)DrPete
Jul 27, 2002 4:44 PM
Check out this website from Kreitler, the king of rollers.

I just picked up a pair of Kreitler Dyno-Lytes, and I rode an hour despite the crap weather on the east coast!

I run my usual 110-120psi, and yes, it'll take a while to get steady. I thought I was sliding a lot too, until I got the hang of it. Now it's day 2 on the rollers and I'm riding next to a wall rather than in the doorway. Can't believe how much better rollers are than windtrainers.

Good luck, and don't lose faith!
Thanks for the Kreitler link! (nm)cking17
Jul 27, 2002 4:53 PM
re: Roller help (!)trimble
Jul 28, 2002 2:53 AM
Congrats on buying your rollers. Mine are the American Classic four-drum rollers and yes, I went through some of the frustration you're going through. It's tough to stay upright the first few times on rollers. It's all about balance, rhythm and faith.

It sounds like you have a three-drum roller. I've heard those are a bit harder to learn to ride, but hang in there.

Use baby steps while learning to ride rollers. Use street shoes for the first couple of times so you can bail out easier. Rollers force you to even out your pedal stroke. My right leg is the stronger and the bike kept pulling in that direction. I was lucky to stay upright for 30 sec. When I got my pedal stroke evened out, things improved dramatically. Keep your hands on top of the handlebars, but don't grip too tightly. Start off in your 39x17 or 15. If you use your 39x19 or smaller, you're going to get a bouncing sensation and it's very hard to stay upright. You need some resistance while riding the rollers and riding 39x17 will help you balance on the rollers. Once you're able to stay upright, ride the rollers 5-10 minutes and increase the time as you feel comfortable. I went from 1 to 5 to 30 to 45 minutes within a couple of weeks.

Also, if you have a garage, set the rollers up there. After 5 minutes on the rollers, you're going to be covered in sweat and a lot of that sweat is going to drip down (better on concrete than your carpet). Wear your gloves. Otherwise your handlebar tape is going to absorb a lot of sweat. Rollers are not silent (at least mine aren't) and that's another reason to ride 'em in the garage.

Riding rollers is like jumping in the deep end of the pool when you've just learned how to swim. You just have to have faith in yourself.

Good luck!