Robert Holler shares tips for outfitting your Cruzbike indoor training setup.
No doubt that getting outside to ride your Cruzbike is the ultimate experience. But sometimes it isn't possible (think the recent -50F temps in the midwest) and you need to take your riding indoors. Moving to an indoor setup is easy on a Cruzbike and we are here to help!
A question that comes up often is, "Which trainer should I buy to use with my Cruzbike?" There are a lot of choices out there for trainers - all of which feature a wide array of options and technology.
Actually, if you have not been riding a trainer for many years, it might surprise you now. The technology that has gone into training indoors is amazing and now much more fun with the advent of companies like Zwift that allow you to virtually ride and train with people all over the world. Your training can now be a fun and social experience as opposed to the old days of mindlessly spinning alone on a noisy trainer.
I don't want to specify any individual brands as a recommendation here, but following a few simple rules will get you headed in the right direction towards trainer setup that you will be very happy with. The biggest hurdle to keep in mind is compatibility.
There are many types of trainers, but the key is how the bike mounts to it. Here there are two main types: direct drive and wheel-on.
Wheel-on trainers hold the bike via the drive axle usually using a special skewer included with the trainer. The bike wheel and tire itself is what drives the trainer.
Direct drive trainers require you to remove the drive wheel from the bike. The trainer itself has a cassette of your choosing installed on it and the trainer basically replaces the drive wheel.
In general, Cruzbike models with 700c forks and wheels, and the Q45, require a Direct Drive Trainer. Wheel-on type trainers are not compatible in stock form with these Cruzbike models. The reason is our wider front end. Cruzbikes of this design have a wider point at the drive axle due to the chainstay and use a custom width skewer. As you can see in the photo, the stock Cruzbike skewer is much longer than a typical rear skewer for a wheel-on trainer.
This added width means that the required skewer included with a wheel-on trainer will not be wide enough to use safely on the bike. In addition, the overall width at the front axle area will likely be too wide for the trainer to safely clamp closed anyway, even if you could fashion a longer skewer.
Cruzbike models that use the 26" fork, such as the Sofrider, Quest, Q459, QX100, and T50 can use either a direct drive trainer or a wheel-on trainer. The reason is that due to the fork design of these models, the front chainstay is mounted forward of the drive axle. The front axle width of these models is close to the same as the drive axle on any standard bicycle, so the special skewers included with wheel-on trainers will usually fit just fine.
Note - with all trainers and bikes, there is a risk of interference somewhere. Trainers are designed for upright bikes. The designs of the attachment areas on trainers is pretty universal, but the design of the rest of the trainer is not, and sometimes there can be interference with other bulky parts of the trainer on a Cruzbike such as disc brake calipers, etc. In some cases something like a disc brake caliper might need to be temporarily removed for an interference-free fit. This is rare however.
The Cruzbike forum is an excellent place to find advice from riders who use trainers all the time, as well as other fun training enhancements such as Zwift and TrainerRoad that can make training fun.
If you have any questions, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can help make sure your indoor setup is something you will love to ride almost as much as riding outside!