Sunday, February 05, 2006

REVIEW: CycleOps Mag Trainer

Bike Trainer
Note from the editor: I am turning over the blog today to my brother and guest blogger, Brian. You can see his blog daily over at Defensive Belligerence. This is a followup from the earlier Cycleops Fluid2 review.

Two weeks ago, I received the CycleOps Mag Trainer, a magnetic resistance trainer, in the mail. Since the Midwest is still in the thralls of winter, and I have not been able to ride as much as I would like, the CycleOps trainer was a welcomed sight.

The Mag trainer is an entry-level model in CycleOps line, which relies on a magnet with five setting to provide resistance. The Mag trainer has a manufacturer suggested price of $159.99, and comes with a lifetime limited warranty. For about $20 more you can purchase the Mag+, which includes a bar-mounted remote-shifter that allows you to adjust the resistance. Like the other CycleOps trainers, it comes with the Chris Charmichael "Time Trail" DVD.
Bike Trainer 2

Putting together this trainer was a snap, though the instructions could use some better illustrations. In particular the illustration for the L-bolt, which moves the resistance unit, could definitely use a different viewing angle to better illustrate how to install it. Once the base unit was put together, it was simply a matter of swapping out my rear wheels quick release with the one supplied with the trainer, and then mounting my bike in the trainer. Altogether, this took around 15 minutes.

Most of today's high-end trainers go to great lengths to simulate the resistance you encounter when riding a bike. With it's non-progressive and light flywheel, the Mag feels more like riding an exercise machine in the gym than like pedaling on the trail. In addition, it's loud enough, that you will probably need to turn up your TV. With all that said though, the Mag is definitely worth purchasing if you want a stable and reliable trainer for a reasonable price.
Quality: 4/5
Reliability: 4/5
Ride: 3/5
Overall Value: 3.5/5
URL: CycleOps Mag Trainer
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