Spinner PRO/NXT/Blade feet that is.
While I was at Club Industry last month Josh Taylor walked me through a number of the improvements Star Trac has made to the new Spinner bikes/cycles. I'm never sure which word to use... they only have one wheel so technically they are "cycles" but I'm guessing you understand either way.
Providing a stable, secure platform for the riders in our classes is part of them actually enjoying the class. So if the cycle feels a bit tipsy because the floor isn't perfectly level, most manufactures offer adjustable "feet" on the bottom of each corner where you can make adjustments for an uneven surface. It sounds good in theory; put a rubber "foot" on a steel bolt, which is then screwed into the frame rail. Turning the "foot" changes it's length/height and you can easily adjust the bike to set flat on the floor.
But in real life that steel bolt tends to be corroded from sweat and nearly impossible to turn after a few years of use.
Enter Star Trac's very elegant solution; don't use steel, manufacture the bolt/foot adjuster from high-strength plastic. As you can see in this picture of Josh holding their new adjuster bolt/foot. Looking at the diameter of this thing makes me think it will support any giant who shows up at your studio.
One other thing: I'm aware of a club here in Minneapolis where they use the adjusters to tilt the cycle upwards slightly. I'm aware that cyclists on trainers will do something similar and the Tour de France bike you've seen advertised on Versus touts how their cycle tilts for and aft. Does it make sense to do this [wlm_firstname]?
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Well, I’m wondering how they’d stand up to constant adjustment……like if every time the bike gets used by a different member, they’re adjusting for a different tilt as opposed to once in a blue moon adjustment for levelling.
It’s not Star Trac’s fault, of course, if the device stands up 100% perfectly for normal recommended usage…….but sometimes you have to think ahead to how stuff stands up to normal ABuse (a bit like using a screwdriver to pry open a paint can) I’m assuming of course that the feet aren’t intended as an incline adjustment device…..just for stabilising the bike, right?
I’m sure people out there are trying to make a “hill” out of the leveling feet, but the feet are just that… leveling feet. I’ve been asked this question before (especially since ICON released the TDF bike) and something that is often overlooked with the leveling feet is their effect on a person’s bike fit. Say the leveling feet are grossly misaligned (one foot all the way down, one all the way up and the other 2 somewhere in between.) When using a plumb-bob to identify KOPS (knee over pedal spindle) one can seriously misinterpret the appropriate amount of knee flexion. This is because a plumb-bob will always hang parallel to the line of gravity, so if your bike is not perfectly perpendicular to that force than fit becomes more and more inaccurate. This is why Stages Indoor Cycling uses a Laser during (you guessed it!) LaserFit to account for these small, but measurable variances.
In regards to the TDF bike… the primary reason that it has fore and aft adjustment is so that when a user chooses a Google Earth route, the topography can be mimicked more or less. In my personal opinion, the geometry of an ic bike (the TDF included) does not allow for the hill climbing experience to feel authentic (even if the bike is pitched up or down), but it is very entertaining and saying that you just rode around L’Arch De Triumphe in Paris is pretty cool.