When I first purchased my road bike, I didn’t ever envision having to ride inside as much as I have over the past months. Being on the bike inside is akin to running on the treadmill, but not as much fun (and running on the treadmill is awful). To get a good grasp on time spent on the bike versus how far you have traveled, you need some kind of speed sensor. Garmin’s sensors are great for this, and they automatically calibrate if you ride the bike outside, so no fiddling with you wheel size to make sure you get an accurate speed.
Last summer I invested in the Garmin Speed and Cadence Sensors just before they released a revamped product. The last model (Garmin GSC 10) was an incredible joy to install and to maintain over long periods of time. There is nothing more spine-tingling than starting your ride out by making sure that all of the magnets are aligned properly so that you don’t get constant drop outs, or even better, having the sensors never give readings at all.
On the GSC 10 (shown above), the circular part under the word “Garmin” is where the magnet from the pedal aligns to give the cadence reading, the arm sticking up is the sensor for the wheel magnet to align for speed. If you lined them up just slightly off, no reading. I am positive that anyone who owned one fought with it on at least a few occasions to make it work.
The other really great part of this version is that the install was done with zip ties. Moving it around required you to cut the zip ties, move it to the new location (or different bike) re-zip tie it in place, and again hope for the best in placement.
I decided that I didn’t necessarily want to move these components back and forth and fiddle with alignment between the two bikes, so I invested in the new version of the Garmin Bike Speed and Cadence Sensor. It arrived today and install took all of 30 seconds. The new speed sensor has a case that wraps around the rear hub with a rubber band integrated into the case to keep it in place. The longer part of the install (if you can call it that) was the cadence sensor. This is placed similarly to the last version on the back of the non drive side crank. Again, it uses a rubber band mechanism to hold it in place. Both devices use accelerometers to determine rotation. Today isn’t a bike day, so I haven’t yet tested them out, but I am hopeful that these will work flawlessly.
I’ll leave you with a few pictures of them installed, as well as the new stuff I added to the back of my tri bike this weekend.