Treadmill Repair

Discussion in 'General Appliance Discussion' started by Sparky617, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. Jan 8, 2017 #1

    Sparky617

    Sparky617

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    I have a Treadmill and the particle board under the walking/running belt has cracked down the middle. I guess it couldn't take the pounding of 195lbs of me running on it.

    I'm looking to replace the particle board. It is 5/8" thick covered in melamine. I'm thinking of going to 3/4" plywood and covering it with Formica-type laminate. I suspect they used particle board, not because of its superior strength versus plywood (sarcasm), but because it is significantly cheaper than plywood.

    I thought about just reinforcing it from below with another layer but I think any fasteners through the board in the walking path would be a problem and screws would fail even if I used liquid nails to glue the reinforcement to the existing piece of particle board.

    I have it apart now, and replacement shouldn't be rocket surgery.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Jan 8, 2017 #2

    havasu

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    How about some pics for us?
     
  3. Jan 8, 2017 #3

    Sparky617

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    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
  4. Jan 8, 2017 #4

    slownsteady

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    I wonder what kind of finish you need on the board to prevent wear on the belt. Waxed? I know they sometimes recommend silicone spray, but I would think you need to have a durable finish for that to work.
     
  5. Jan 8, 2017 #5

    Sparky617

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    That is why I was proposing covering it with laminate. The original has melamine. I had thought about using a piece of post-form countertop and cutting the backsplash and front edge off, but I'm not sure I could get 22.5" out of it, and it would be particle board instead of plywood.

    I wonder what they use in commercial treadmills? Thicker particle board or plywood? They take more of pounding in a day than most home treadmills take in a week.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
  6. Jan 8, 2017 #6

    havasu

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    The reason I wanted to see pics is because I also have a treadmill, and with my fat arse, it has held up surprisingly well. I just took a pic and it appears to be either a steel or very hard plastic floor surface. Mine is a Nordic Track, FWIW.

    20170108_113841.jpg
     
  7. Jan 8, 2017 #7

    oldognewtrick

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    I thought you were suppose to hang clothes on them and stick them in a corner. You mean I'm suppose to walk on them? Lesson learned today. :eek:
     
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  8. Jan 8, 2017 #8

    Sparky617

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    It is definitely particle board. I suspect the commercial ones use something other than particle board or much thicker particle board. Nordic Track's stuff is usually pretty solid stuff. My FIL gave me this one when his wife couldn't use it anymore due to back issues. She had to go to something with no impact like a stationary bike or elliptical trainer. It isn't a high-end treadmill.

    Being thrifty I want to get as many years out of it as possible. I think with a plywood based covered with laminate it should last a few more years at a relatively low cost to repair. Certainly less than I'd spend on a replacement, though I prefer outdoor activities. I'm thinking of moving it to my home office so I can walk while on conference calls.
     
  9. Jan 8, 2017 #9

    Sparky617

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    Looking at the cost of laminate versus FRP (fiberglass reinforced panel) I may use the FRP. It is half the price of the in-stock laminates at Lowe's.
     
  10. Jan 9, 2017 #10

    nealtw

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    Plywood with textured Arborite,
     
  11. Jan 9, 2017 #11

    Sparky617

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    I ventured out into the cold and ice last night to the local Lowe's store and wandered about looking for solutions. I wound up using 3/4" birch plywood, handily cut into a 2x4 panel and a piece of "markerboard wainscotting" it is masonite with a dry erase coating on it. The whole set up is a bit thicker than the original particle board but it doesn't appear to interfere with the belt.

    I set out to check out a piece of post form countertop that was on clearance per the website. 6' piece for $11, but I couldn't find the one piece they were supposed to have in stock. I would have been able to get enough width out of the post form stuff, but I think I would have needed to reinforce it on the bottom. Based on my experience with the original particle board base I don't think it would have lasted for the life of the other components. I have it back together now, with the exception of the trim pieces. The total cost of the project was $40. I used contact cement to glue the masonite panel to the plywood.

    I'm not familiar with textured Arborite. I would think anything with much of a texture on it would cause premature wear on the walking/running belt. After I posted I see that Arborite is another name for laminate. Two main brands here are Wilsonart and Formica.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  12. Jan 10, 2017 #12

    Sparky617

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    I did some web searching today and found a replacement deck from the manufacturer. $126 plus shipping! That is some expensive quarter sheet of particle board. Given that the original broke with my running on it, I think I made the right call in making my own replacement. The deck replacement was fully 1/4 of the cost of a new one of the same model.
     
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  13. Jan 10, 2017 #13

    slownsteady

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    If you can remember to, update in a few months and let us know how well it stands up. I would be curious.
     
  14. Jan 10, 2017 #14

    Sparky617

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    I will if I remember. I moved the treadmill to my bonus room where I work from home. So it will be getting more use going forward. I took advantage of the crappy weekend weather we had in NC to do some projects around the house that I had been putting off. Repairing the treadmill was one of them.
     
  15. Jan 28, 2017 #15

    frodo

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    MANNNNNNNNN.....why are you fixing the treadmill ? damit man,
    you are supposed to put the thing on the curb for the trash man, and i come along and scarf it up.:rofl::rofl:
    To make

    [ame="https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x3c380z_brass-tumbler-3-001_sport"]http://https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x3c380z_brass-tumbler-3-001_sport[/ame]
     
  16. Jan 28, 2017 #16

    oldognewtrick

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    Link didn't work Frodo.
     
  17. Jan 29, 2017 #17

    kok328

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    Agreed. I'm the proud owner of a lightly used $1200 elliptical that was sitting curb side. I found that the tension/idler pulley was shot. Managed to fabricate a replacement for nothing and away we go.
    So now it sits next to the tread mill that someone wanted but doesn't use.
     
  18. Jan 30, 2017 #18

    Sparky617

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    I would be out there gathering up the cast-offs myself. Three weeks of use and the markerboard wainscotting is holding up well, no signs of wear. It is definitely more solid than the particle board I replaced.
     

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