Time to get a road bike?

Been using my Surly Ogre with Kickr Snap-on trainer. Triple with 48-36-26 chainrings and 11-36 cogs. On flat routes, like the Champs race, I stay in 48-11 the whole time. (Now gradients at 4 and up are a different matter, lol.) I love my Ogre for off-road touring. Have a Son dyno hub to power electronics, Thud buster and Berthoude Aspin saddle for comfort, and all the racks and bags my mule can carry, lol. We are slow.

If I get a road bike with, say, a 52 or 53 chainring can I expect much improvement? (Yeah, I know my IRL bike’s weight doesn’t matter in Zwift, and probably not the 2.5 inch tires, either.)

Oh, other option I am considering is a Wahoo bike.

Kickr Bike is great, less space taken than a real road bike and no messy cassettes or chains. Can simulate nearly any drivetrain type.

But a real road bike is awesome to ride outside. :wink:

1 Like

Since you have a wheel-on trainer, it’s pretty important to have a very smooth tire. Preferably a trainer tire. And to make sure you have the roller tensioned properly, the trainer calibrated regularly, and maintain constant tire pressure between calibrations. So a lot can go wrong with the basic setup. I don’t know how strong you are but yes it’s possible your gearing is too low, but how many Watts are measured by the trainer when you are riding the 48-11?

A road bike would help, but a better trainer would also help. If you are riding in 48-11 all the time but not producing a lot of Watts, I would suspect the trainer.

If you’re looking at a Wahoo Kickr bike as a potential purchase, you should probably weigh that against a road bike and a Kickr Core (or better) trainer. If it’s going to be a dedicated trainer bike then it doesn’t need to be an expensive bike.


Yeah, been thinking of finding a used road bike, putting one of those smooth tires on the back, and making do for awhile. Especially as I just bought the snap-on. Maybe next fall finance a Wahoo bike…after convincing my wife, lol.

Oh, time to check tire pressure and look up calibration, which I never did.

Downloaded the Wahoo app and it updated the Snap-on trainer. Email thanked me for registering the trainer, lol. I see how to do a spindown calibration and will do it after I get back from lifting at my gym tomorrow. Thanks so much for mentioning calibration. I forgot all about it after setting up my bike. I will post here if it makes a difference in my power output.

I think I have been cheating!

Rear tire was down to 40 psi, so pumped it up to 60 (IRC, should be 55), and did a spin down calibration. Pedaling was harder and had some burning rubber smell. Anyway, started my planned zone 2 ride, Coastal Crusher. After a km or two, stayed in 36-15 at about 80 rpm. Instead of producing an easy 140-150 watts, I was under 100 watts and it felt harder. BTW, the route description said 35 or 36 km, but after 23 km it said I still had 20 km to go. I quit and checked Strava and Garmin, which said I did less than 15 km, though my feed in Zwift and Zwiftpower credit me with 23 km. Weird. Still have issues with trainer dropouts, so maybe a connection?

My legs were tired from deadlifting at my gym, but not that tired. I guess I am just much weaker and slower than I thought. In fairness, I should be moved to last in all my races.

Also, I need to move up doing a FTP test, lol.

That’s definitely not right, and implies a setup issue. Sounds like your tyre is slipping on the roller so isn’t tensioned correctly, and you’ll be losing watts.

1 Like

Gonna replace my chain today. Will try retensioning and recalibrating later. Didn’t think my tire should be stinking up my room, lol.

Rest day today, but decided to do London Classique route to test changes to tire pressure, retensioning, and recalibration. No more burning tire and watts back up, though it bit lower. (Then again, my legs are killing me after first time back in the gym this year, lol.)

However, Strava and Garmin still show much lower mileage than Zwift for my rides. Any idea why?

If you sync to Strava directly from Zwift, the distance should match. If you’re syncing from the Garmin device it won’t because it doesn’t know how far you traveled in Zwift.

1 Like

I think I connect directly from Zwift to Strava (upload at end of ride) and from there to Garmin. In any case, the distance, average watts, etc., used to match for all three until two days ago.

Thanks for the link with its explanation of discrepances.

BTW, is it just a coincidence that the Strava/Garmin numbers stopped matching Zwift numbers as soon as Zwift updated?

Is your trainer also paired to a cycling computer that uploads your rides to Garmin? If so, do a ride with it turned off. It’s unclear to me if the Garmin upload is coming from Zwift.

I have a Garmin Edge for outdoors but it is completely turned off. (In fact, I replaced the Garmin Ant+ cadence sensor with a Garmin bluetooth cadence sensor after I realized that I could not connect with my laptop.)

Trainer is just paired to Zwift on my laptop. And I have Strava and Garmin checked in Zwift settings for sharing. In fact, their numbers exactly matched Zwift numbers before, so I do not think they were calculating anything. Again, maybe something changed with the lastest Zwift update?

BTW, the Strava and Garmin numbers match each other. More reason to make me wonder if something changed since the Zwift update with reporting.

I rode an event today. Garmin Connect says 43.3km. Zwift says 43.4km. At first I saw Garmin reporting in miles instead of kilometers so hopefully that’s not your problem. No cycling computer or Garmin watch involved in my setup, just Zwift connected to Garmin Connect.

1 Like

I am an idiot! Somehow Strava and Garmin now diplay in miles!

1 Like

I saw a Trek Project One SLR 9 Emonda in my 58 cm size for $1,000 on Craigslist. Sounds too good to be true as they go for more than $10,000 new. Afraid it has a damaged carbon frame or is stolen.

1 Like