Wheels for turbo trainer

Hi, I’m in the process of moving from rim brakes to disc and trying to get the wheel sorted for the turbo trainer.
I have the CycleOps Fluid 2. The bike is a Focus Cayo disc.
I’ve already bought a Robert Axle thru axle, but now want to sort out a dedicated wheel.
It seems that most disc wheels take minimum 25mm tyres.
My (and most other) hometrainer tyres seem to be 23mm wide.
Please could you recommend a suitable (ideally cheap too!) wheel that I could use.

I personally wouldn’t worry about a 2mm discrepancy on a trainer.

Elite and Kinetic both do 25c trainer tyres if you want to stick with recommended widths.

It may be difficult to find disc brake wheels designed for a 23c tyre since most disc braked bikes and wheels like to take advantage of the wider tyre.

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Elite Coperton trainer tyre comes in 25 mm

Thanks. I’ll stick with the 23mm on the 17c rim then!

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I use a mavic askium disc for my turbo wheel

Do you feel like the trainer specific tires give some benefit over using a used road tire?

I find that a cheap road tire performs as good or better than the “trainer” specific tires.

My trainer gets much hotter than it probably should and as a result it will just blow through a regular road tire (even something like a gatorskin). Trainer tires also are less likely to throw little rubber shreds or dust behind your trainer.

Though many people run cheap tires on the trainer and have zero issue.

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Are you going to get a cheap wheel to use on the trainer? Why worry about if it is disk or rim brake (unless you have little ones that will use the brake lever when you are not around)? Just don’t use the brakes.

That could work also. Though if you have a through axle frame then it would probably be difficult to find a 12x142 rim brake wheel.

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  • Indeed. I’d wager it is almost impossible in fact, because that combo (rim/TA) doesn’t exist on any “standard” bike that I have ever seen.
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I recall from before I got a dedicated tyre that old road ones got pretty hot and I felt that screwing in the resistance on the dumb trainer went quite a long way into the tyre. Much happier with a super thick hometrainer one. Besides, it’s bright orange so I know I’ll never forget to swap it for a road wheel before heading out.

I have thru-axles, so QR is a no go. As I have a focus, I’ve already bought a Robert Axle Project turbo axle.

It might be worth stopping by your preferred local bike shop, to ask if they have a “crappy old” disc wheel laying around in the back that you could buy on the cheap. As others have already mentioned, I would say there is no need to even bother with putting a disc rotor on the wheel, as you will not be using your brake when on the trainer.


They may also know someone who recently bought a bike with budget wheels that they know will be upgrading them and be looking to maybe offload the old ones.

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Those are great, and be open to an “old” XC MTB Disc wheel with a 142mm x 12mm axle, because it will likely have a narrow rim that is reasonable to use with a road tire.

Several ways to find an affordable (cheap) solution.

I have a dedicated wheel/tire for my kickr snap. I dont have a rotor on it. I just insert a spacer in the caliper in case I bump the brake lever, or my young kids decide to pull them. I find this to be an ideal solution. A lot less fussing around changing tires between outside and inside rides.
The wheel I have is the stock wheel that came with the bike. I don’t think you need anything fancy for this purpose, ask around, someone might have an extra wheel hanging up in the garage that will work.