This is my review of the KOM Cycling Desk, which I use to keep my remotes, phone, snacks, water and towel handy when I am doing indoor cycling on my smart trainer. This cycling desk is one of the cheapest available on the market, and my hope was that it would meet my needs, despite the fact that it is much cheaper than the competition.
Why You Might Need a Cycling Desk
Once you get into indoor cycling, you may soon discover that a cycling desk is essential. If you are like me, you will be fully focused on your virtual cycling world. The last thing you want is to have to get off the bike to fetch an energy gel or a bottle of water.
I started off by trying to balance my cycling necessities on a set of nearby golf clubs. The result was inevitable – I kept dropping things. And then of course I did not want to stop and dismount. So, I frequently had to shout for help from Mrs. Average Joe Cyclist, who was usually comfortably ensconced with a pile of dogs in the next room. This did not make for a happy marriage.
For Maggie, the saving grace of us spending a few hundred dollars on a Zwift Hub trainer was that she could have a few peaceful Joe-free hours. I knew it was not in my best interests to spoil this for her.
Some Cycling Desks are Bizarrely Expensive
Well, you would think an easy answer would be to buy a cycling desk, right? Just a simple desk that you could raise to the right height, and that would not interfere too much with your bike setup. That should be the answer, but the problem is, some companies seem to have decided to use that basic need as an excuse to sell their cycling desks at bizarrely high prices.
The most prominent product on the market is Wahoo’s cycling desk, for which they ask an amazing amount of money – around $300. I paid $500 for my Zwift Hub smart trainer, and it is actually worth that much money. But there was no way on earth I could justify paying $300 for a simple piece of mass-produced metal and plastic.
Wahoo also makes a very popular and affordable heart rate monitor, the Wahoo TICKR, which I reviewed here. Given the very reasonable price of that, I am amazed at the price of their cycling desk. I have to admit that it has wheels, and that it gets an astonishing number of good reviews. All the same, there is no way I would pay that much money for it.
Cheaper Cycling Desks
Consequently, I scoured the internet for a cheaper alternative. It came down to a choice between the KOM cycling desk and the RAD cycling desk. The RAD cycling desk has the same U-shaped leg configuration as the Wahoo desk, so it looked like a safer bet than the KOM in terms of fitting around the bike. On the other hand, multiple reviewers mentioned that the tripod legs configuration on the KOM was pretty flexible.
I ended up choosing the KOM, for the simple reason that it was cheaper. At a hundred dollars, it just scraped into my limit of what I was willing to spend on a cycling desk. Also, it could double as a stand-up desk for Mrs. Average Joe Cyclist. (Always thinking of her needs.)
First Impressions of the KOM Cycling Desk
When I unboxed the KOM, I was pleasantly surprised in every way by this much more budget-friendly desk. It was lighter and bigger than I expected. Plus, it was extremely easy to assemble. And it does everything I need it to do. Best of all, I will not have to live with years of regret at having paid too much money for it (and consequently having to wait longer before I can buy another cycling gadget).
I was a little worried about how the tripod legs would work out, but I have discovered that the legs and the top part are both fully adjustable. I don’t actually have an entire pain cave. Rather, I have a slim pain path in the middle of the office that Maggie and I share. So, I frequently have to move the desk around (depending on whether Maggie is at her desk when I am cycling). This is quite easily done, because the desk is so light. Also, the fact that the legs and top move independently means that I can readily get the desk into a handy position, and in such a way that the legs don’t annoy anyone.
Even when I am on the bike, I can easily move the desk around a bit with one hand, because it is light and stable. Of course, I have it adjusted to the perfect height as well. The desktop is fully adjustable to between 34 and 50 inches high.
What Fits on the KOM Cycling Desk
I run my Zwift game on an Apple TV and a TV screen on the wall. So, I just need the KOM Cycling Desk off to the side to hold my water, snacks, remote controls, towel, and extra phone (or iPad, for entertainment). It accommodates all of these easily. I would have preferred if there was a hook on the side for hanging a towel. Instead, Mrs. Average Joe Cyclist has hooked up a string underneath the table to hang the towel. This works just fine. At some point, I may buy a hook to glue onto the side. (I can easily afford a $5 hook, thanks to the $200 I saved by getting this desk.)
I found that my standard water bottle (which is not a bike bottle) did not fit, but my SKS water bottle is a perfect fit, so I have ordered two more. These are my favorite bottles for cycling, anyway. I have plenty more details about this water bottle in my post about how to carry a water bottle on pretty much any bike, here.
Two new bottles at $7 each, plus one hook at $5, and I am STILL saving $181 on the KOM cycling desk versus the more expensive desk. (Plus, I probably would have found a reason to buy the water bottles anyway.)
Laptops on the KOM Cycling Desk
I do occasionally run Zwift on my PC, when I feel like watching a movie on the TV. Or when I want to record a Zwift ride. My current laptop is a fairly large 15 inch x 9.5 inch Asus, and it fits just fine on the desk. In fact, the first thing I said when I unpacked the desk was “Wow, it’s bigger than I expected.” (I wanted to insert an inappropriate joke here, but Maggie vetoed it.)
Phones and Tablets on the KOM Cycling Desk
Before I bought the desk I noticed that some of the reviews complained that the angle of the desk was wrong, and so people could not stand their phones or tablets on the desk without them sliding off. I also saw that KOM had printed a large statement to the effect that if that was happening, you didn’t put the desk together correctly.
I am happy to tell you that KOM was right. Providing you put this desk together correctly (and I am not sure how you could get it wrong), there is absolutely nothing wrong with the angle of this desk. My iPad and smart phone can stand up just fine in the groove that is provided for the purpose. There is zero danger of anything sliding off. Also, it has a very nice surface covering that prevents things from sliding around.
Bottom Line on the KOM Cycling Desk
This desk has made my indoor cycling experience even more fun. I am very happy with it, and immensely relieved that I did not succumb to brand pressure and sink $300 on a very similar product from another company. If you need a cycling desk (or a stand-up desk) and you are working within a budget, you can’t go wrong with this one.
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