Simple Cadence Meter

Turbo training can be tedious at times, especially when you have little feedback about your performance.  The elaborate bike computers can be expensive so here’s how to make a Cadence Meter on the cheap. 

All you need is a spare bike computer that can measure speed.

  1. Tape the magnet that would normally go on the wheel to the left hand pedal crank, near the end with the pedal.
  2. Fix the sensor to the bike frame so it can detect the magnet on the pedal crank.  Use cable ties to hold it in place. Fit a small piece of inner tube between the sensor and the frame to stop the sensor from slipping.
  3. Fix the bike computer to the bike frame where you can see it.  Some cables may not be long enough to reach to the handlebars, so you could mount it on the down tube.
  4. Check that the cable is kept out of the way from the pedal movement.
  5. On the bike computer, set the speed to km and the wheel circumference to 167cm.  This gives the critical measurement for the cadence meter.

As many bike computers can’t display speeds over 99.9mph (understandably), the cadence display is divided by 10.  Therefore a cadence of 85 will be seen as 8.5 and a cadence of 115 will be seen as 11.5

Now you can get pedalling and know how fast your legs are working.


  1. Important that you set your computer to km/have, or else you're looking at your cadence devided by 1.6!

  2. Excellent post. I was searching around how to make a simple cadence meter for my mountain bike. Does setting the wheel circumference to 167cm work for a bike that has 24" tires?

  3. Interesting question; this is cadence meter so it measures the speed of the pedal rotation, the diameter of the wheels or the length of the cranks do not make any difference to the calculations. The 167cm setting is used for any size wheel.