Integrate Zwift with virtual actuators


(Tim Davidson) #1

Came up with this idea today while riding and someone chatting it would be great to feel the cobblestones.  I’m sure they were joking - but thought, this would be a really neat addition for the high-end Zwift user.

Not allowing one to feel the cobblestones, but actually allowing users to have a platform that integrate with virtual actuators so that our cycle could mimic the gradient we were riding.  While Smart Trainers do their best to add/remove resistance accordingly - different muscle groups are still being used in uphill climbs as riders need to tilt forward.

Clearly this isn’t for everyone - but would be nice to see Zwift had a method to interface with actuators (similar to virtual car racing set-ups) to allow for this true enhancement/extension of the virtual world.  

I’m sure more than a few riders would drop $$$ to add this geeky type of a platform.


(Duane Gran [Vision]) #2

To my knowledge the market has not supported to development and production of such a device.  Over the years it has come up and the most credible effort was a device that worked with the CompuTrainer but it is long defunct now:

http://forum.slowtwitch.com/forum/Slowtwitch_Forums_C1/Triathlon_Forum_F1/Hill_Simulator_P1177444/

Additionally there is an expired patent on the idea:

http://www.google.com/patents/US7303510

The only presently working system I know of that does this is the Tour de France spin bike, but I’ve heard that the novelty of this feature wears off quickly.  There is an Italian-made mini-treadmill trainer that is in development that has some tilting aspects but it wouldn’t surprise me if it goes with a flat platform in production.  It adds a lot of complexity, liability and opportunity for failure points.