Rocker Plates for Trainers

trainer

#101

now we are talking! Hmm, where did I put that flux capacitor…


#102

Next to the Mr. Fusion


#103

I think you can try without a center support if you want. It is the “Floating Plate” rocker.

Then, it is easy to then add a vertical board for the simplest improvement to make a “T-Plate” rocker.

Use the KISS approach and start with the easy option.


#104

floating plate rocker - even on a full-size deck to fit both front wheel and trainer?


#105

Yup, that works too. I’ve seen it done a couple of times, with happy users.

The first was a full sheet of ply and 6 pods. Super simple and showed the promise.


#106

longboard it is!


#107

@mcneese.chad do you have any pdfs lying around that I can use to cut the longboard from plywood? If not I’ll swag something. I don’t facebook.


#108

I need to look on the FB group. I know people have posted their templates and pics of sizes.

I will DL something and relay to you.


#109

Take your time and I appreciate it. Going to work on construction over the weekend and next week.


#110

Here are a couple of options:

I can do a CAD drawing if you have a different shape or size you would like.


#111

Thanks!


#112

I should add, you can also consider a hybrid of the Floating and T-Plate rockers. You can include a row of pods down the middle (instead of the rigid vertical board).

This allows some more control against bouncing, by providing some center support. You can set the middle pods to a higher pressure too…

So, there are plenty of ways to play with it and see what you like best.


#113


#114

ROCKER PLATE TESTING with SADDLE PRESSURE MAPPING

Video

https://youtu.be/2LF5lkYdbCc

  • It’s a long one at 30+ minutes, but I decided to leave it that way to show the process and review as much as possible, for clarity.
  • Here are start times to major sections if you want to find something in particular.
    • Rocker Setup (1:23)
    • Tests 1 & 2 for all rocker settings (2:37)
    • Data Review of tests 1 & 2 (7:53)
    • Tests 3 for all rocker settings (19:36)
    • Data Review of all tests (22:26)
    • Final Data Capture for all tests (29:06)

Here is the numerical data and some initial analysis.

https://docs.google.com/…/1_aT3g7TBOJhxSEKaUjjyig0Loi…/edit…


General Info

  • This includes a Rigid Setup (equivalent to a trainer on the floor), then adding Rocker Plate motion (at 3 different leveling spring settings).

  • I used the bike and trainer mounted on the rocker plate for all tests. I used wood shims to eliminate motion from the rocker plate for the Rigid setting. This serves as a baseline/control for comparison to the motion that comes from the 3 different rocker plate settings, and whether that motion alters the pressure on the saddle.

Theory

  • The common theory is that adding motion will change pressure on the saddle, and lead to more comfort for the rider. The rocker plate is an attempt to get a more natural feel and function to the bike on the trainer, that may be similar to the motion we have when riding outside.

Basic Review

  • The improvement starts right away when you move from Rigid (fixed) trainer to a Stiff leveling spring setting on the Rocker Plate. It is similar for the Medium leveling spring setting.

  • There is notable difference with the Light leveling spring setting. The bike and trainer are very free to move, almost to the point of being “hard” to ride and balance upright. It is possible a bit lighter than the setting I use on my current setup. The center of pressure moves fore and aft a bunch compared to any of the other tests.

Initial conclusions

  • Initial review seems to indicate that adding a rocker plate does reduce the peak pressure on the saddle.
  • It does so even on the “Stiff” setting, which implies that just about any motion may be beneficial.

Starting to get a sore ass from using the indoor trainer. Help!
#115

I used the Cyclops dumb trainer for many years and can easily recognize the issues the videos point out regarding the uncomfortableness of being on a stationary trainer and stress to the frame. However, back in July I bought a Tacx NEO and that has been a game changer. While not exactly like being outdoors, it allows for some amount of natural sway thereby reducing the issues discussed. Even during “Fireworks”, the neuromuscular sprints in the Disaster workout, I felt I could do much of the natural motion of a sprint. Plus, the sway is a natural one - no rocker plate opposing motion training required. So my question is: Are there any Tacx NEO users that are now using rocker plates that have experienced noticeable improvements in comfort?


#116

3/4" for sure.


#117

@mcneese.chad - Inspired by this thread I did a quick test with a 1 inch visco-elastic foam topper and piece of plywood. Even that small compliance made the a difference in comfort .


#118

I made a concentrated effort to do the correct pedal timing while standing and, damn, it was hard to get it right. I actually got a little frustrated with it. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: Definitely need to work on my technique while riding on the rocker plate.

That being said, I started to wonder if I should even bother since I’m really not out of the saddle that much for TR workouts and I don’t use Zwift. I’m mostly out of the saddle for a break from sitting and not really trying to practice anything. Also, I decided to just relax and just do some standing pedaling without worrying about which side I was rocking to. What I noticed is that I really don’t sway that much. Maybe from the many years of being on a rigid indoor bike with either a trainer or a spin bike. Not sure.

Anyway, my 2 cents. :upside_down_face:


#119

Honestly, I don’t think it’s necessary to do it “right”. You can get all the real benefits and I don’t think doing it “wrong” leads to any real problems.

Look at it this way. We’ve all been using rigid trainers for decades and still ride fine outside, even though that rigid state and especially standing, are not at all like we do outside.

A rocker plate makes it a bit better and I think no worse from a “technique” standpoint when you go outside. So, I wouldn’t lose any sleep over the timing issue.


#120

@mcneese.chad You may find this interesting: Yesterday I posted a question on the FB group for Tacx NEO users (myself included) about the use of rocker plates and have received a number of positive comments about the use of them, including several references to you and your Zwift/YouTube posts (you’re a star :slight_smile: ). If interested, here is the link: