DIY Rocker Plate – V2

In January 2019 I had built a rocker plate and documented the build process here: DIY Rocker Plate.

At the time, I had a Tacx Vortex, an on-wheel trainer. I recently upgraded to an Elite Suito and so I needed to cut new holes to help mount the trainer to the rocker plate. Since I would have needed to take it apart to do this, I decided to upgrade the finish and graphics. Nothing within the mechanism has changed.

My first decision I had to make was how to attach the trainer. For the Tacx Vortex, I had used split hangers. These worked well as the Tacx had round legs. The Elite Suito has square legs. The best options I found was to use velcro straps that I found on Amazon. They come in various widths, but I figured the 2″ width would be nice and sturdy. I ended up using 5 of them. I simply cut slots in the board to run the straps through. Here are the slots

The next decision was on the color and graphics. I decided to put the ELITE logo on the rocker plate so painting id red made the most sense. It matches the Elite logo colors and my bike is also black/red so it matches that too.

For the logos, I used a Cricut to cut permanent stickers. I also added my blog logo and an inspirational quote I came across from Greg LeMond.

I topped off the board with a thin layer of epoxy. This served mutliple purposes:

  • It protected the stickers so they don’t peel or get destroyed from being stepped on
  • It added a layer of protected to the rocker plate from sweat
  • It gave it a great glass-like finish

The bottom of the rocker plate got painted white with some of it’s own graphics that would just peek through on the edges when assembled

The bottom of the rocker plate got painted white with some of it’s own graphics that would just peek through on the edges when assembled

Here is the final result all assembled:

The last enhancement I wanted to make was to make my rocker plate smart. I want to add LED lighting whose color is changed based on my current power output. For this, I added a Raspberry Pi and LED lighting. This part of the project isn’t fully completed, but here is the control box and an example video of how the LED lights will eventually change:

Allstate Hot Chocolate 15K Race Report

Today was another race, a 15K this time. The event had both a 5K and a 15K race.

The day started off pretty early. I wasn’t sure what time to try and get to the event. The 5K had a start time of 7:30am and the 15K a start time of 8:15am. When I looked at the parking map, they had the participants on the opposite end of Fair Park. Quite a walk away. It was also cold. I decided to try and get there for 6:30-6:45am. I figured the 5K would have the most participants and I didn’t want to end up getting there after them and having to park far.

It turns out that they opened up an additional parking lot right by the start and since I got there early enough, I was able to park there. I was about 25m from the start line and just about 50m from the finish line. It was great.

I got there early and it was cold so I hung out in my car and watched as the 5K folks arrived. The 5K race was huge. Looking at the 5K results afterwards showed 7,945 finishers. It took about 30 mins for them to get all the 5K runners over the start line. BTW, the 15K was no slough either. The final tally showed 4,329 finishers.

Once they were gone, I lined up in my coral and looked for the pacers. My coral had 10:00, 10:30, and 11:00 min/mile pacers. I hung around the 10:30 pacer. Once the race started I was a bit ahead but by the end of the first 2 miles, I was near that pacer. Unfortunately I then started to take walking breaks and eventually the 11:00 min pacer caught me and hung with her for a while. Based on my watch and my mile splits, the pacers were both a bit fast. Eventually I fell behind the 11:00 pacer and ended up just running my own race.

While the weather was cold at the start, but the end, it was rather warm. I almost wore my tights, but I’m glads I stuck to shorts. I wore two shirts, but I could have gotten away with a short-sleeved shirt at the end.

Like my last race, the half-marathon, this 15K course had quite a number of hills.

I ended up finishing the race in 1 hr 45 mins. Here are my results:

Overall, I enjoyed the race and I will definitely consider doing it again. The only downside is that for packet pickup, I had to pay for parking. I wish I didn’t especially since I was only there for 15 mins.