Tags: fluid trainer, rim drive trainer, roller trainer
I'm going to be using my mountain bike on a trainer over the winter. What is your opinion on fluid trainers v.s. roller trainers?
You may not like what I am initially going to say. Why don't you look at a rim drive trainer? A rim drive trainer will allow you to keep the rear tire on your mountain bike while riding a trainer that makes use of the rims and not the tire. Plus, if you look at the reviews of the trainer below, you will find that it has been described by some as being "whisper quiet". 5 levels of resistance gives you the opportunity to have a great workout.
Minoura RDA80D Rimdrive Trainer
Roller trainers require a learning curve. It is not something where you will just put your bike on the roller trainer, hop on and start riding while watching TV. The video below (minus the cat) might give you a better idea of what to expect. Since you have a mountain bike, you will want to change both tires to slick tires. Riding a roller trainer with mountain bike tires will make one heck of a noise, cause vibration, and be generally unpleasant. You will want to place the unit next to a wall and ride with a sufficient gear so that you have enough resistance to give you a good workout.
Fluid trainers are nice. They provide the most amount of resistance of all indoor bike trainers, are fairly quiet, and give progressive resistance so that it has more of a road like feel (again, compared to other indoor bicycle trainers). If you want the optimum way to either get in shape or stay in shape during the off-season (or inclement weather), your choice should be a fluid trainer. Since you have a mountain bike, you will have to remove the rear tire and put on a slick. Otherwise you would have such vibration that riding would not be no fun at all. I your situation a fluid trainer would be a great choice.
CycleOps Fluid 2 Indoor Bicycle Trainer
|Too low to display|
|Yes ($25 minimum)|
My personal choice if I were to choose to ride my mountain bike on a bike trainer would be to use a rim drive trainer first, a fluid trainer second, and a roller trainer third.