Nube: how to calibrate a dumb Trainer

Loving the Zwift Experience and passing the word around about having a go, especially with the whole Covid/lockdown thing.

To save money, I’m running on a (really) dumb (unlisted) turbo trainer i bought way back in the day when i was a triathlete. I don’t mind if its calibrated or not; i ride until i feel exercised, but I’d prefer not to mislead people into thinking I’m Eddie Merx.

My question is this, can you provide guidance to how I can calibrate my dumb trainer so its ball park near accurate? I asked the Internet but got a shrug from Google. I’d rather not have to buy the latest Carlos Fandango smart trainer going into the worst economic downturn in recent history!

Of course, I am capable of brutal power so i could just be owning everybody anyway :slight_smile:

The only way would be to use a power meter.


This is how your speed is determined on a classic “dumb” trainer.


Hi @Rob_Pearce

Welcome to the Forum.

It depend on what trainer you have, if it a mag trainer you can change the resistance lever higher until it is more reasonable. I have done that with a power tap wheel. I changed the resistance leaver until it closely matched the PT wheel.


Thanks for the advice Paul.

Thanks for the detail Mike; my trainer is magnetic and non-adjustable - despite those limitations I’m sure it obeys the laws of physics and provides exponential resistance at least.

True, but the power curve that Zwift puts you on is what can’t be changed and may not be accurate.

Thanks for the advice Gerrie - i was hoping there was some rule of thumb spindown type test - but i see the sense in using your method or some other kind of power meter.