Here at Fitegg.com we love reviewing cycling gear however, the following will be our first (but hopefully not our last) review of an indoor trainer, enjoy!
The Cascade FluidPro Power Bike Trainer is solid, like you could throw it down a staircase and drive a truck over it and you’re not going to hurt it. In addition to the extreme hardware durability, the stability it provides when your bike is actually attached is excellent. Compared to other trainers that have tried I would rank this in the top 2 (next to the Computrainer) for bike stability. I completed several different indoor rides on this trainer including hard intervals and hill climbs where I was out of the saddle hammering away and my bike didn’t move a bit. For storage The Cascade FluidPro Power Bike Trainer has foldable arms that allow it to easily be put in a closet or the corner of your garage.
The only complaint I have is being that it the trainer is extremely durable, it is very heavy. I would highly recommend doing some strength training if you plan on moving this trainer around (seriously this thing is heavy).
The Riser Block
Most all trainer brands have their own style of rise blocker that get the job done of raising the front wheel of your bike to either level with your trainer height, or slightly above. The cascade riser block features three different level adjustments in a cylinder type riser that looks very clean and adds to the stability of the ride.
The Cycling Computer
After several indoor cycling workouts on the Cascade FluidPro Power Bike Trainer, I had mixed feelings on the Computer that was included with the trainer. I felt that it was fairly large which to some my be a great thing as it provides clear and simple heart rate, cadence, power, time, and distance readings. However, being that I use my triathlon bike and not my road bike, I couldn’t find a good place to mount the computer (see picture below for my solution to this problem).
The trainer includes a wireless heart rate monitor, a wireless cadence sensor, a wireless speed sensor (built into the trainer), and power stats. All these accessories were super simple to set-up and took me less than 10 minutes. The only complaint I have with accessoires is I wish the computer could sense ANT+ compatible components so I didn’t have to have 2 different cadence sensors on my bike frame and I could use the same heart rate monitor.
I compared my cadence, heart rate, and speed from the cascade accessories to my Garmin accessories and found both providing very similar numbers. Additionally based on feel and experience I’m confident in the numbers the Cascade Trainer computer provided.
The main reason I was intrigued to review this trainer was the fact that it read power. After talking with a representative from Cascade Indoor Bike Trainers they explained that the power reading is an algorithm that computer calculates into a power reading (in the form of watts). To be honest I was a bit thrown off by this, as I wanted a “true” power meter but to my surprise after comparing my average power from both a stages power meter and a cycleops powertap to my average power on the cascade trainer for a 20 minute indoor ride, the cascade trainer was within 10-30 watts of both the stages powermeter and the cycleops powertap. It’s also important to mention I periodically (about every minute) looked at both watt readouts during these tests to see how close they were and although the watts of each computer was off by 10-30 watts of each other they were consistently apart. This shows that the power read outs on the Cascade FluidPro Power Bike Trainer are consistent.
Unfortunately the Cascade FluidPro Power Trainer doesn’t have it means to upload the training data to a computer for analysis to really geek out the accuracy of the power meter. This being said based on my effort and heart rate for over a dozen different indoor cycling workouts, I did see consistent power numbers and fairly accurate power numbers (watts).
Besides my small complaints about the computer/software technology I would highly recommend this trainer for anyone looking for an extremely stable trainer, that reads power (that is surprisingly accurate), and most importantly of all it’s under $500. When you consider the fact that most trainers are in between $150-$600 and a power meter is between $600-$2,600 and most trainers that read power are well over $1,000, this is a smoking deal.