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  • MattHurst

    This seems like a direct response to the Wahoo Kickr, has anybody tried both? Pricing is very similar now I think…

    • Yes. It’s close, but it’s no Kickr.

      • MattHurst

        Thanks Shane

  • Let’s not ignore the major issues Tacx have had with early builds of this unit. I’ve broken two of these with only an hour of use, other customers are on their third and fourth replacement. That “mild oscillation” sound you’re talking about…. that’s not by design. That’s an early indication your demo unit is about to fail. We’ve seen this over and over again.

    It has been a very difficult berth for the Flux. A quick review of the “FLUX Owners Group” over on Facebook highlights exactly what I’m referring to. This is the only indoor trainer I have a folder full of failures people have sent through.

    Tacx have opened their doors to a few independent media entities and have been fully transparent with their QA and QC process, so all credit to them on this one. It’s no secret they’re hurting on this one and are doing all they can to ensure the issue(s) are resolved. Let’s hope they can get on top of it.

    If I break a third unit I’ll be holding a “I’m done here, it’s going in the Yarra” ceremony. Time and location TBA.

  • Nitro

    Slightly off topic, but sort of relevant at the same time / may be a topic for another CT article sometime…

    The evolution of the indoor trainers / apps like Zwift (I admit it – I’m a hopeless Zwift addict) has us racking up more indoor k’s than anyone would have thought possible in the not too distant past. (Put me on a spin bike and I’ll last 20 mins before wanting to poke my eyes out, but put me on Zwift and my KICKR and I’ll knock out 100 k’s and still not be bored)

    Be aware that riding inside puts very different TLC and maintenance requirements on your bike than riding on the road.

    Without going into too much gory detail, when you ride inside you sweat – a lot – regardless of how many / which fans you use – and sweat appears to be about as corrosive as that tank of molten metal Arnie dips himself into at the end of Terminator 3. .

    Wiping down the frame after each use doesn’t really cut it – as I have recently found out…. Complete headset re-build, and previous bottom bracket re-engineering aren’t cheap exercises…

    Mind you, look on the bright side – not much tyre / brake wear :)

  • HamishM

    Wow, it’s ugly.

    I’m surprised to see the flywheel coming back. They don’t use it in their cheaper wheel-on models like the Vortex so I wonder why they would use it in this new model?

    • A flywheel is still the best solution to model real-world riding. The weight gives a system really good inertia…. and catches the slack, so to speak, under high torque accelerations. The Neo, while technically superior in a number of ways, still doesn’t provide the same response as a trainer with a good flywheel. It’s close…. but not the same.

      • HamishM

        Interesting. Thanks

  • Strictly B Grade

    Matt – any details on the belt that connects the drive to the flywheel?
    I have an old Merida rim drive trainer that has a v-belt between the roller and flywheel. I am not – by any measure – a powerful rider and I managed to chew the belt out after two explosive effort sessions; so I only use it for steady state efforts now.

    • See @gplama:disqus for some comments on this. I didn’t experience any burning rubber, just an uneven sound.

    • There’s some tear-down photos up on the FCC website for when the units were certified in the US. I’ve linked them here: https://goo.gl/AJ3lqO I’ve also got a few videos posted on YouTube taking the units apart to see where/how they failed on me.

  • Rayzor

    Another CT review where the result comes in between 8 and 10?

    • It’s a problem with our weighting for each metric. Something we’ve thought a lot about and we’re working on it.

    • Ritch

      Apply the necessary correction factor: subtract 6 and you have a simple maximum 4-star rating system.
      0 – awful
      1 – not much better
      2 – average/ok
      3 – very good/excellent
      4 – outstanding

    • Reducing a product review to a set of numbers is a bit like digitising music: something is bound to get lost. Regardless, it makes for a quick snapshot of the reviewer’s opinion of the product. The relatively tight range of scores largely reflects the high standard of products in the marketplace today, which is something that we didn’t anticipate when choosing to use a score out of ten. The scores for each category adds extra depth but all of the fine detail can only be found in the review itself.

  • Fenton Crackshell

    I considered the Tacx Flux in November, but there just wasn’t enough customer feedback at the time. I ended up buying a Wahoo Kickr Snap (MSRP $600) in November and I’ve been pretty happy with it. It’s the most solid wheel-mounted smart trainer and it seems to have fewer issues than the Tacx Vortex Smart. You have to be somewhat attentive – maintain the same tire pressure and perform a quick spindown calibration at the beginning of each workout, but that’s easy to do at the start of a workout within the Trainer Road app. Power measurements is consistent and generally 10-15 watts less than real world measurements. If you’re doing sprint intervals above 500W, the wheel won’t slip as long as you maintain a reasonably high cadence (100+ rpm) when approaching a really big step up power. Was it worth the investment? In short, we have had a tough winter of snow and rain and flu season in the PNW, but my base and build training has gone exactly as planned.

    • HamishM

      Are you supposed to warm up before running the spindown? I’d do it every time on my Vortex to check the calibration but it’s a pain to warm up, then stop, run the calibration, possibly get off and tighten the wheel / pump the tyre, then (re)start Zwift, then ride. I’ve never had any wheel slip on the Vortex though I don’t often sprint that hard on it.

      • Fenton Crackshell

        Yes, you warm up before because the brake strength calibration is dependent on the machine being warmed up. All I do is set my tire pressure, start my work out, and then after about 5 minutes, I conduct a spindown from the device settings within Trainer Road. That takes 30 seconds and then I resume my workout. I’m not sure if Zwift allows you do the spindown within the app, in the middle of the workout.

        • HamishM

          Ah that would be good but as far as I know can’t be done inside Zwift. I use the Tacx Utility app on my phone to do it instead, but can’t really do that while Zwift is running.

  • Kristján Snorrason

    You might like to revise your pricing. The Aussie RRP will be $1099.99 with units landing @ Tacx Dealers in 6 days time.

    • Thanks. Just got word on this price this morning.

  • Commenting here because it’s timely. Thanks for the review. I just picked up a Tacx Flow Smart, exclusive to only a couple stores in the UK. It’s a great smart trainer at less than half the cost of the Flux, but it only varies resistance 5% for riders above 75kg. As a long time racer I don’t feel it’s got enough resistance range for me. The Flux looks great, but I’m actually thinking of the Tacx Genius Smart because it’s 20% resistance range and pretty cool it can emulate a -5% downhill. It’s pretty arbitrary at this point, but I wonder what any of you think? The Flow works great and is seamless in Zwift workout erg mode, for example, but I’ll never be able to do 20 second sprints with it or feel any climb variation beyond 5%.

  • Melivn

    I am looking at a bike trainer and the Flux is a sweet spot for pricing and features. I noted the numerous reports of failed units last year and early 2017. Are they still nagging issues for this trainer?

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