My Thoughts On The Wattbike Atom After Four Months

December 30th, 2020 | 179 views

Having owned the Wattbike Atom (v1) for over 4 months now and cycled 2,630 kilometres so far on it, I feel I am in a good position to offer my thoughts on this bit of kit – What I like about it, and dislike.

If you are thinking about buying this trainer, read on.

Wattbike Atom

I originally ordered the Wattbike Atom in July of this year as I wasn’t getting in a lot of exercise due to Covid and thought I could at least get some exercise in with an indoor trainer.

My given timeframe for receiving the bike was between 28 – 35 days. I think it arrived about a week after that. Apparently the delivery time has gone up massively as some people are now waiting months due to high demand!

So what do I think about the bike and how has it helped with my exercise goals for the past few months?

1. Looks

Before purchasing the Atom I was researching so many of these trainers like crazy and there’s no doubt about it, it is sexy as hell! Sure, the look of the trainer doesn’t matter for performance but the designers over at Wattbike did an amazing job creating this thing that it’s such a head turner you can’t help but drool when you see it.

2. Quality

Four months might not be long enough to gauge an accurate view on the quality of a product, so YMMV and all that but so far the Atom has been rock solid and hasn’t skipped a beat. I use it a few times a week for rides between 10km – 40km and it’s still purring away like new.

The weight of the device is about 45kg, I’m about 92kg and when riding on it, it doesn’t move at all, even attempting to sprint.

3. Apps / Gamification

Anyone who knows me knows how much of a kid I am and this definitely translates into my exercise world. I love undertaking challenges, aiming for those Strava badges, and seeing how many calories I can burn in a session!

I mostly use Zwift but I’m also trying out Fulgaz and I’m impressed with both for different reasons.

Zwift is my ‘go to’ app when I first hit the bike. There’s just so much going on! The group rides are insanely fun, the virtual worlds are so varied that it’s hard to get bored easily.

And then of course the achievements you can unlock keep you pushing to unlock all of them (The 50,000m tron bike anyone?).

Fulgaz is quite different than Zwift in the fact that instead of 3D virtual worlds like Zwift, all of the rides are real world rides that people have recorded while completing the route.

There are so many routes from all over the world and there are new routes added every week.

This app is mainly used when I want to ‘switch off’ while getting some miles in and watching YouTube etc.

4. Safety

There’s no doubt about it, being out in the real world on the bike, the dangers from motorists are very real. I have had countless close passes, near misses, doorings and a crash from a car driver turning without looking back a few years ago. (Drivers, put your fucking phone away).

I sometimes get anxiety riding outside for the above reasons. Of course, I’ve not stopped riding in the real world, but the stress levels have definitely come down while being inside and getting some miles in.

Sometimes it’s nice to be in the Wattbike bubble.

5. Wattbike Atom vs a turbo trainer

I was thinking about getting a turbo trainer initially, something like the Wahoo Kicker or Tacx Flux S but the idea of bringing in the bike each time I wanted to get a session in wasn’t too appealing, couple that with the chain oil and general bike mess, nah mate.

The Atom is great, you just set it up and leave it, a quick wipe down when you’re finished and boom.

6. Support / Maintenance

One of the reasons why I went with Wattbike when choosing an indoor trainer was because it’s a well known brand, used in GYMs and it’s serviceable. I could have spent a few hundred on a no brand name but I like knowing that if it it breaks or I have an issue with it, the company is a phone call away.

7. Cost

There’s just no way around it, the Atom costs a lot. It took me a few days to finally pull the trigger and purchase the thing! There are a lot of other options on the market for an indoor trainer but the Atom ticked off a lot of boxes.

8. Dislike / Like

So far, I am stilling loving my Atom and have no issues with it. Here are what I like and dislike about it.

Likes

  • So. much. fun
  • I can train anytime I want, even when the weather is crap
  • Easy way to burn calories
  • Has improved my fitness greatly
  • “Real world feel” is quite responsive with hills/flat changes.
  • Compact sign compared with a road bike + turbo trainer

Dislikes

  • Expensive
  • Not sweat resistant
  • Gears sometimes a few seconds to kick in
  • Designed more for one rider than multiple people (Some adjustments need an allen key)

9. Conclusion

As you correctly might have guessed, the Wattike Atom is a thumbs up from me. I just love the fact that I can get a quick session in anytime the mood takes me.

One thing to consider is that to really get the most out of the bike, you will need a third party tablet which adds an extra cost if you don’t already have one.

If you’re thinking about pulling the trigger and getting yourself one, here’s a link to get £25 off the total price. Happy riding.

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