What power meter?

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by Fenner, May 9, 2006.

  1. Fenner

    Fenner New Member

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    As a sports scientist and A grade masters cyclist I have been delving into the world of power based training for several years now and I am finally about to purchase one. At uni I was involved in a lot of testing on various power meters from Kings Cycles - SRM's. The Kings cycle had a degree of variability and was of course not portable and the SRM very expensive and difficult to move from bike to bike. This then leads to the question WHAT POWER METER should I invest in that will service my needs best?
    As well as using the device for my own training I am interested in setting up a lab in my basement and offering testing and training for my local club members. This way I will also get lots of lovely data to analyse. At this moment in time I am swayed towards the ergomo pro, with the purchase of 1 computer and 2 bottom brackets. This seems to be the cheapest way to fit out a fully adjustable ergo at home and fit one to my bike.
    So what are peoples thoughts on what will be the best option? Any advice and help would be great.:)
     
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  2. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    Your question is well framed. I can only offer personal experience with the PT SL, but I have followed all of the PM products closely for a year. If you are primarily considering the PT, Ergomo Pro and SRM, I think there is not an obvious choice. IOW, no product trumps all others in all respects. That would make it a no-brainer decision. And, it gets really interesting when you have multiple bikes and wheel sets. I think accuracy is probably not a discriminating factor. As you know, there are important consequences associated with the component(s) involved in capturing power data in the first place because it affects the ease of sharing the PM system with other frames and wheelsets. It also affects the inconvenience associated with major maintenance that requires returning the power capture component to the manufacturer. For example, when I have finished outfitting my training and racing setup, I will own 3 PT hubs, 3 receivers and 3 PT computers. The PT hubs will be installed on a training wheel, racing wheel and disc. The receivers and computers will be installed on a road frame, TT frame and one of each for backup. That will bring my investment in PT systems to ~$3300, arguably equivalent to an SRM Pro. But, I have the availability of power data on two frames and three wheelsets, without needing to transfer components. Plus, if I have to send a hub back to Saris for repairs (a possibility with any system), I have other wheels to use in the interim. I think if I were making my decision today, I would seriously consider the Ergomo Pro, primarily for the availability of additional data elements (especially NP) and the interval features. And, if money were no object, I would go with two SRM systems (one for each frame). Aren't we fortunate to have choices?
     
  3. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    BTW, there is an entire chapter (20pp) devoted to the different power meter systems in the Allen/Coggan book, "Training and Racing with a Power Meter." That chapter alone justifies the price of the book. In fact, they should offer it (that chapter alone) as a pay-per-view document.
     
  4. Tom Anhalt

    Tom Anhalt New Member

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    I'm thinking that for your purposes a PT may be the way to go...especially if you're interested in testing/training yourself and others in your "basement lab".

    One tip for using a PT wheel I've read in a "testing of others" mode is to simply put the PT wheel on the other person's bike and then place your bike frame (with the reciever and harness) backwards next to the other bike (that's mounted to the trainer) close enough to pick up the signals. Voila! No need to swap a harness and the people you're testing can use their own bikes.

    One thing I'd be careful about choosing the Ergomo is that unless you have an independent source to verify the power readings/calibration, I've seen reports that the Ergomo may not agree with reality. Since you can't do a field calibration, or "stomp test" like you can with the PT or SRM, there's no way of knowing if your Ergomo is giving you accurate numbers or not.

    If you weren't planning on using the PM in your "lab" (i.e. on a trainer) I'd also suggest that you take a look at the Polar ;)

    I agree that the power meter review chapter in the "Training and Racing with a Power Meter" book is very comprehensive and a fair and balanced look at the main power meter options. If you don't have the book already, go get it...with your sports science background you'll reap a LOT of good insight from that book.
     
  5. yzfrr11

    yzfrr11 New Member

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    The Dura-Ace SRM can be moved from one bike to another in less than 60 seconds. All you need to do is remove the left crankarm by loosening the 2 hex screws, and slide the powermeter out of the bottom bracket. Once you holding a hex wrench, it is just as easy as moving a rear wheel from one bike to another.
     
  6. NGART

    NGART New Member

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    I have 4 bikes and the great thing is that I only needed to buy 1 ergomo system and 3 individual BB (works with up to 99 bikes!!) and saving lots of money which I now spend to purchase my bike no. five. Crazy but I love it! ergomo is not only the coolest but as well the most affordable PM with lost of great features. Downside is, that the orange ergomo color does not match my red Pinarello bike !
     
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