Schwinn IC2 Vs IC3 – Which One Is the Superior Sibling?

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Schwinn IC2 Vs IC3

 Choosing the right exercise bike can be a difficult balance between features and price. This Schwinn IC2 vs IC3 review analyses two of the company’s products to find out which of the two best suits your specific needs.

I need to replace my indoor bike and have my heart set on a Schwinn product. I know I can’t go wrong with this brand because they have been making bikes for so many years.  I can’t decide on which model to go for, knowing that sometimes newer models are more expensive than their predecessors when the additional features are worth foregoing or can be substituted with other devices.

In this Schwinn IC2 vs IC3 review we look at some key differences between the two models to help you decide which one is a better option for you.


 What are the differencesbetween Schwinn IC2 and IC3?

Schwinn model
IC2
IC3
Flywheel
31 lbs. ( 14kg)
40 lbs. (18kg) (smoother riding)
Maximum weight capacity
250 lbs. (113 kg)
300 lbs. (136 kg                             ( accommodates heavier users)
Heart rate monitor
Incompatible ( can’t use a heart monitor)
Compatible to console
Cooling fan
Has cooling fan
No cooling fan
 

Schwinn IC2 Vs IC3. How Do They Compare?

Flywheel Weight

The flywheel is perhaps the most prominent part of your indoor bike. It is the big, round disc which spins underneath the bike.

Itsfunction is to create a smooth, seamless ride. It does this by storing energy which is used to make cycling motion smooth to ensure a consistent cadence (speed at which the rider’s legs spin as the pedals rotate). When momentum is built up in the flywheel the pedal doesn’t easily slow down and there is more consistent pedaling action.

The general assumption is that the heavier the flywheel the better because weight adds to momentum when riding. The Schwinn IC2 flywheel weighs 31 pounds (14 kg) while the one in the IC3 weighs 40 pounds (18 kg).

It is worth noting that the notion that a heavier flywheel is better for smoothness has been opposed by some manufacturers but if it is correct then the IC3 flywheel makes it a better bike.

Heart Rate Monitoring

Cardiovascular exercise is one reason why cycling is so popular. Heat rate (and power meters) are the best way to measure training effort. If this is an important detail for you, it is essential to keep track of your heart rate throughout your workout session.

Ability to do this is another key difference between the two bike models. With IC2 you cannot connect any heart rate monitoring device because the console is not compatible with any. The IC3 console is compatible with a chest strap with which your heart rate will be displayed as one of the readings on the screen.

Cooling Fan

You are at the height of your work out, sweat is flowing down your face. The one thing you would really appreciate is a fan. Some cool air blowing on your face would make the ride so much better. That is what the Schwinn IC2 offers. The cooling fan is built into the bike’s console and directs coo air towards your face as you ride.

The IC3 does not have this feature.

Maximum Weight Capacity

Every bike is built to take a certain amount of weight beyond which it ceases to be comfortable or safe to use. This is an important detail if you weigh more than the average user. If you do, you will probably be looking for the bike with the highest weigh capacity within your price range.

Although most bikes’ maximum weight capacity falls within a narrow range you will notice that the IC3 can take more weight than the IC2.  The former has a maximum capacity of 300 pounds while the latter can take up to 250 pounds.

Even if the reason you are buying the bike is to shed off those extra pounds, it is always advisable to buy a bike which holds your current weight comfortably.


Schwinn IC2 vs IC3 – A Comparison Overview

Schwinn IC2 Bike Overview

Schwinn IC2 Indoor Cycling Exercise Bike
  • Sturdy, upright indoor fitness cycle built to replicate the experience of actual road riding
  • Easy-adjust pedals and outdoor cycling inspired Q-Factor; multi position handlebars; fore/aft seat adjustment

The Schwinn IC2 is designed for home use and not commercial use. It is a sturdy bike with a strong steel frame which gives you the confidence that it can take the weight of just about any size of user.

It comes with a simple console which allows you to keep track of basic details such as time, RPMs, distance and calories burned. The down side to this console is that you cannot use it with any of the many cycling apps available.

This bike is quite small in terms of the amount of space it takes up. If you have a little space at the corner of your living room or in your bedroom, it will probably fit fine. With dimensions of 45 by23 by 49 inches, you can have it in a room without having to rearrange furniture to fit it in.

Another convenient feature is a pair of wheels which come in handy when you need to move the bike from one place to another. It weighs 83 pounds but you don’t have to get help from a second d pair of hands to move it. Simply tilt it to allow its weight fall on the wheels and wheel it around.

If you are putting your bike on a floor that is not completely flat, don’t worry because this bike has adjustable leveling feet. You can adjust them on an uneven floor to make sure you and the bike are well balanced even on an uneven surface.

Although it is well hidden a key difference between this bike and other bikes is the driver. Unlike other bikes which have a belt as the main component of the drive system, this one has a chain, much like that found in an outdoor bike. It works just like a belt though it requires maintenance which is regular lubrication to prevent friction. Just like you would do with an outdoor bike.

 Pros

  • Frame built using corrosion resistant steel tubing
  • Adjustable handlebars
  • Adjustable seat
  • Infinite resistance

 Cons

  • Chain which requires regular maintenance
  • Not compatible to heart rate monitor
  • Only one holder for water, phone or other item
View price on Amazon

Schwinn IC3 Bike Overview

Schwinn IC3 Indoor Cycling Bike
  • 40 lb. flywheel powered by a smooth and silent belt drive with infinitely variable resistance
  • Dual SPD pedals come standard with toe cages and clips

The Schwinn IC3 bike, an upgraded version of the IC2 has a 40 pound flywheel which supports smooth pedaling and gives the rider a feel similar to outdoor riding. You can further increase that outdoor riding feel by simulating a hill. This is done with the use of a resistance knob which is turned in either direction to make the ride easier or more difficult.

The knob creates infinite levels because there are no settings or presets. It is great if you want to adjust resistance in very small increments as you go along. The disadvantage to this knob is that it may be difficult to find the exact level you used on a previous ride.

The data console displays your exercise time, speed, distance, calories burned and RPMs. It is compatible with a chest strap though you have to buy it separately. Simply wear the strap and connect it to the console to keep track of your heart rate.

In order to accommodate users of varying heights and body sizes, the seat can be adjusted both vertically (up and down) and horizontally (back and forth) using a knob pin. The handlebars are also easily adjustable both vertically and horizontally and are appropriately shaped to allow users shift grip positions. Maintaining a single grip position can be tiring. The ability to shift from one to another in the course of a ride helps you extend your work out session.

Pros

  • Chest strap compatible
  • Infinite resistance
  • Padded, adjustable handlebars
  • Heavy flywheel
  • High weight capacity

Cons

  • Unsuitable for very tall users
  • No cooling fans
  • Uncomfortable seat
View price on Amazon

Conclusion

With more than a century of cycling and fitness expertise, you can be sure than any product from Schwinn is of excellent quality. Both the IC2 and IC3 models are small enough to fit in a small space and have a pair of wheels to easily transport the bike from place to place.

Both offer infinite resistance and a console which displays all necessary stats to help you keep track of progress.

Verdict: So Which Is Better Schwinn IC2 or IC3?

The IC2 is the IC3’s predecessor so the two are quite similar. After analyzing the two, the IC3 is a better option for users looking to get as smooth a ride as possible within this price range.

With the IC3 you have more leeway in terms of weight capacity and a smoother ride thanks to a heavier flywheel. The IC3’s flywheel is 9 pounds heavier than the one in the IC2 and this does count for more momentum when cycling. It however means that it takes more energy to stop the wheel especially when it is rotating at high speed.

The IC3 also gives you the option to use a chest strap while the IC2 is not compatible with this kind of device. 


FAQs

Is it true that I can’t use my clip-in riding shoes on the Schwinn IC2?

Yes, you can’t use clip-ins with the pedals IC2 comes with. To be able to use these shoes, you have to change the pedals to a compatible set.

How many batteries does the Schwinn IC3 console need?

It takes 2 AA batteries which last quite long since it shuts itself off automatically after 4 minutes of inactivity.

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