WHICH KREITLER ROLLER MODEL IS RIGHT FOR ME?
Are you mainly interested in developing better balance and pedaling technique? Do you want to improve your “spin”, your power, or both? Are you a first time roller rider, or a fierce competitor looking for another tool in your training regimen?
No matter how you answered the above questions, there is a Kreitler Roller system for you. Follow the steps below and you will become confident in your selection of Kreitler products.
Step 1) Select the drum diameter
The smaller the drum diameter, the greater the resistance. Smaller drums rotate at higher RPM’s than larger drums, producing more friction in the sealed cartridge bearings. Smaller drums also create more tire friction because the roller has a smaller contact patch.
The 4.5 drums have relatively low resistance. Most riders can ride in larger gears and keep the wheel speed high with relatively low effort on the 4.5 drums. Higher wheel speed enhances balance and provides a greater coasting effect if you stop pedaling momentarily.
Combined with the Headwind Fan, the 4.5 models provide the widest range of workload of any other roller combination. For easy spinning or intense interval workouts, you can do it all with the 4.5 drums combined with the Headwind Fan. The 4.5 drums are also the easiest for learning to ride rollers.
The 3.0 drums provide approximately 40% more resistance compared to the 4.5 drums, making harder workouts possible without the addition of the Headwind Fan. The 3.0 rollers are a good choice when higher resistance is desired, and at a lower cost than the 4.5 w/Headwind Fan combination.
The 2.25 drums have approximately 90% more resistance compared to the 4.5 drums. Only the strongest of riders are able to ride the 2.25 drums. The 2.25 rollers were originally designed for the USA Cycling Team when they were looking for smaller rollers for travel that also provided enough resistance for interval workouts or sprint warm-ups. If you do not routinely average over 20-25mph on your solo road rides, look to the 3.0’s or 4.5’s.
For a numerical comparison of the different Kreitler drums and accessories, please refer to the Wattage Chart. This chart is for comparison purposes only. Your actual wattage produced will vary depending on body weight, tire pressure, wheel aerodynamics, and other factors.
Step 2) Select Alloy or Poly End Caps
Our Alloy Rollers are available in all three sizes (4.5, 3.0 and 2.25) while the Challenger Rollers are only available in 4.5. Alloy rollers have alloy end caps while the Challenger 4.5 have molded ploycarbonate end caps. Alloy end caps are heavier than Poly end caps, creating more momentum in the rollers and an increased coasting effect. While the Poly end caps are high quality and built to last, the Alloy end caps maintain momentum better and are even longer lasting.
Note: Alloy end caps are recommended if the Headwind Fan or Flywheel will be used regularly. These accessories put a fair amount of friction on the belt groove of the end cap. However the Headwind Fan and the Flywheel can be used with either the Alloy 4.5 or Challenger 4.5 drums.
Step 3) Choose Standard or Hot Dog drums
Standard Kreitler drums are 15” wide and are by far the most popular width. Hot Dog drums are 10” wide. Every model of Kreitler Drum is available in the Hot Dog width. Hot Dog drums are desirable for the most experienced roller riders who want an additional challenge or maximum portability from their rollers.
Step 4) Choose Standard or Kompact frames
The Standard frame works with all Kreitler drums and accessories, and covers a wide range of wheelbases. There are also two extension kits available for the Standard frame for longer bikes such as recumbents and tandems.
The Kompact frame is designed for those who travel with rollers, or just need a set that folds very compactly. Kompact frames work with wheelbases from 38” to 42” only. It is compatible with the Headwind Fan but not the Flywheel.
Note: You can use the 4.5 drums on the Kompact frame, but it will only fold up compactly in a very narrow range of wheelbase settings (39.5” to 41”). The clearance between the ground and the 4.5 drums is minimal, and may be insufficient on uneven surfaces.
Step 5) Consider Accessories
The Headwind Fan is an adjustable resistance unit providing a wide range of resistance options depending on how far you open the air inlet. The air flow can be aimed at the rider for a cooling breeze, or directed away if preferred. The range of resistance when used in combination with the 4.5 rollers simulates everything from a 2mph tailwind to a tough uphill climb into the wind.
The Flywheel increases the momentum of the rollers by adding mass. Additional momentum has a smoothing effect on the pedaling stroke and increases the road-like feel. The Flywheel also adds resistance, but not nearly as much as the Headwind Fan. Refer to the Wattage Chart for more details.
The Fork Stand is an accessory that is useful for maximum effort sprinting, single-leg drills, or for sharing your Kreitler Rollers with someone who doesn’t want to have to concentrate as much on their balance.