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Best Fitness BFCT1 Elliptical Trainer

UnitSizeSupported
weight
ResistanceConsoleWarranty
Best Fitness CT1

Check Discounted Price
L:45"
W:26"
H:66"
225 lbsManual
magnetic,
8 levels
Time,
Distance,
Speed,
Calories,
Pulse,
BMI,
BMR,
Recovery,
Goals
Frame: 5 years
Parts: 1 year
Wear: 90 days
Labor: 90 days

Although the Best Fitness CT1 cross trainer is one of the oldest elliptical trainers from Body-Solid but hasn’t been discontinued yet, as it has gathered an excellent feedback from most users. It’s a machine made for home use and does not offer preset programs, online connectivity, or other amenities. However, it’s a pretty sturdy unit and does offer several functions that basic models do not have. In terms of specs and features, it’s similar to the Efitment E006 or the Sunny SF-E3607.

Technical Details and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 45L x 26W x 66H inches (114L x 66W x 168H cm)
  • Assembled weight: 106 lbs (48 kg)
  • Supported weight: 225 lbs (102 kg)
  • Stride: 12 inches (30.5 cm)
  • Incline: No
  • Resistance: Manual magnetic, 8 levels
  • Console: Time, distance, speed, calories, pulse, BMI function, Recovery function, goals
  • Warranty: Frame 5 years / Parts 1 year / Wear parts 90 days / Labor 90 days

Frame & parts

The Best Fitness BFCT1 features a sturdy frame, rated for users up to 225 lbs (102 kg). The steel bars in its construction are actually thicker and heavier than for other models in this specs range. With the frame fully assembled, the unit weighs 106 lbs (48 kg), a weight that considerably enhances its stability. Also, the rear base stabilizer of the unit features rotating polygonal caps which can act as levelers.

The unit’s front base is equipped with a set of transport wheels. Therefore, the relocation of the unit shouldn’t be a problem.

This Body-Solid cross trainer is not an extremely large fitness machine. With the frame fully set up, it is only 45″ (114 cm) long, and 26″ (66 cm) wide. This being said, it can fit well in a small room or apartment. But it is recommended, though, to leave at least two feet of clearance all around the unit, for safe operation and access.

Although most of the machine is made of steel tubing, the covers of the internal flywheel and resistance system are made of ABS material, along with several other covers. These shouldn’t reduce the unit’s overall sturdiness, though, as their role is only protective or cosmetic.

All the steel bars within the unit’s frame are coated with a thick layer of rust-resistant and scratch resistant paint finish. The color versions available are red or light gray, with the flywheel casing either black/red, or black/white.

The pedals are made of heavy-duty nylon material. They have a non-slip surface and an inner border to improve foot stability. They do not have any cushioning or articulation, so they don’t provide extra shock absorption like a light-commercial elliptical such as the Bowflex BXE216, for example. But nonetheless, just as for any other elliptical trainer, the pedaling motion generates very little impact on the joints.

The footplates attach directly to their metallic bars via 3 screws each. There is only one attachment position for each pedal; other machines, such as the Kettler AXOS Cross P, offer multiple attachment positions for the footplates to their bars, so you can have them closer to the front or to the rear.

The machine is equipped with two sets of handlebars, one mobile and one fixed. The moving handlebars are fairly long; their top actually reaches approx. 66″ (168 cm) above floor level. They also have ball grips at the top. The fixed handlebars have a multi-grip design. They also integrate pulse sensors, so the console can monitor your pulse or run its recovery function to measure your fitness level.

Stride, elliptical path & step-up height

This Body-Solid elliptical trainer does not have an incline system. Also, like many other models in this category, it has a pretty short stride of approx 12″ (30.5 cm). Therefore, it may not be the best choice for a user over 6’0″ (183 cm) as the range of motion provided by it is a bit short for a taller person. However, even if exercising by the means of a short stride, you can still burn a decent number of calories, depending on the workout intensity.

The unit’s crank is placed at the rear, behind the pedals. Therefore, the elliptical path is slightly inclined forward. Thus, a workout on this machine may give the user the sensation of going down on a soft hill.

The pedal step-up height is approx. 8″ (20 cm). However, the maximum elevation that the machine will give you is approx. 10″ (25.4 cm). This being said, it is recommended to place and use the machine in a room with a ceiling that is at least 16″ – 17″ (40 – 43 cm) higher than your own height.

Drive & resistance

The Body-Solid BFCT1 elliptical trainer integrates a perimeter weighted flywheel which generates a bit of momentum and promotes a steady pedaling motion. Its weight is not specified, but it should be around 20 lbs (9 kg). This flywheel also allows you to pedal in reverse, if you want, in order to diversify your workout.

The machine’s internal resistance system consists of a magnetic brake which is connected to the tension dial on the front mast through a steel wire. As you turn the dial, the brake will move away or closer to the flywheel decreasing or increasing the intensity of the internal magnetic field. This results in an increase or decrease of the pedal tension.

Evidently, since the resistance system requires manual adjustment, the machine doesn’t need to be connected to a power source. Also, the console has no role in the resistance adjustment.

The cross trainer makes available 8 levels of resistance. The first level of resistance generates very little pedal tension, being most appropriate for recovery training. Conversely, the 7-8 tension levels offer the possibility to undergo a considerably more intense workout.

Like most other elliptical trainers with a magnetic resistance system, the Body Solid BFCT1 model is equipped with a belt drive system. Therefore, it shouldn’t need any internal lubrication; the belt generates almost no noise during the usage of the machine. It also produces considerably less vibration than a chain drive.

Console

Since it’s not an elliptical machine with a digital resistance system, its console doesn’t offer any preset programs. It does, however, offer considerably more features than a basic unit. To begin with, it has a multi-window LCD display, so you can view all the workout metrics at once, without the need to use a SCAN function to rotate them. The display indicates time, distance, calories, pulse, and speed. There is also a temperature reading, which can be set according to specific needs.

For speed, distance, and temperature, there are both metric and English settings available. The unit is not telemetric, though. This means it cannot read your pulse through a wireless HR chest strap transmitter. So, in order to benefit from a pulse reading, you will have to use the pulse sensors integrated into the fixed handlebars.

Although the console doesn’t have preset programs, it does offer the possibility to set up goals for time, distance, and calories. If you select a certain goal for any of these metrics, the console will count down from the selected value until it reaches zero. This function allows you to keep a better track of your progress.

The unit’s Recovery function gives you the possibility to calculate your fitness level. It measures the amount of time taken by your pulse to become normal after the workout. Based on this measurement, it will give you a rating between F1 – excellent, and F6 – poor.

Finally, the console has the ability to measure your Body Fat, Body Mass Index (BMI), and Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). There actually are 8 user IDs available, so 8 users can calculate these stats. The BMI function estimates an ideal body weight depending on your height and weight, giving you an overall weight goal for your training. It can also serve as a diagnostic tool to identify weight problems. The BMR function determines your daily calorie needs.

Assembly & Maintenance

The internal elements of the machine, including the flywheel, the belt, the crank, and the resistance system come pre-assembled, attached to the base frame, and already enclosed by the protective shrouds. Therefore, you only have to add the base stabilizers to the main body of the machine, the pedal bars, the pedals, the console mast, the moving arms, the stationary handlebars, and the console. This may take up to two hours. However, the manual provides very clear, step-by-step assembly instructions, and all the necessary tools are included.

For maintenance, the joints of the machine may require lubrication if they begin to squeak. Other than that, it is recommended to periodically check for loose bolts and parts.

The Pros

  • Solid construction, high stability;
  • Adjustable stabilizers on the rear base;
  • Transport wheels on the front base;
  • Fixed and mobile handlebars;
  • Ovalized grips on top of the moving arms;
  • EKG pulse sensors built-in the fixed handlebars.
  • Balanced flywheel for a smooth pedaling motion;
  • Large, durable pedals, with inner guards;
  • Multi-window console which shows time, distance, speed, calories, and pulse all at once, so you don’t have to use a scan function;
  • 8 levels of magnetic resistance.
  • Recovery function; 
  • Body Fat, BMI, and BMR functions;
  • Goal settings for time, distance, and calories;
  • Quiet machine;
  • Easy to put together;
  • Little maintenance required.

The Cons

  • No tablet holder;
  • No online connectivity;
  • No backlight on the console unit.
  • Fairly short stride, only 12″.

Summary

The Best Fitness BFCT1 is an elliptical cross trainer from Body-Solid featuring a manual magnetic resistance system with 8 tension levels, and a console with goal settings, BMI, BMR and Recovery functions. It’s a well-built machine featuring a heavier frame than other models, which results in a better stability. It’s an excellent trainer for light to medium intensity cardio workouts with a low impact on the joints, for muscle toning, stamina development, and weight loss. Finally, it’s not exactly one of the most affordable models but does offer a decent value for the price.

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