Nautilus R616 Recumbent Bike
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|Frame: 10 years
Parts: 3 years
Electronics: 3 year
Labor: 1 year
The first Nautilus R616 (part number 100388) recumbent exercise bike was released in 2014. However, in the second part of 2017 Nautilus has released a new version of this bike, the Nautilus R616 100670. This is the model that we’re going to address in this post.
This Nautilus exercise has a similar frame construction to the R614 model, but it does offer higher ergonomics, more workout programs, and extra resistance levels. Overall, it’s quite an inclusive exercise bike. Therefore, in case you’ve already set eye on this model, you probably would want to know as much as possible regarding all its features and functions. In this post, we’ll try to cover each and every one of them.
Technical Details and Specifications
- Assembled dimensions: 65.3L x 28.3W x 49.6H inches (166L x 72W x 126H cm)
- Assembled weight: 91.9 lbs (41.7 kg)
- Supported weight: 300 lbs (136 kg)
- Handlebars: Fixed, with pulse sensors
- Seat: 2-way adjustable
- Pedals: With straps
- Resistance: Eddy current, 25 levels
- Progress tracking console: 29 workout programs, NautilusConnect and MyFitnessPal compatible, Bluetooth connectivity
- Amenities: Sound system, cooling fan, media tray, USB port, bottle holder
- Warranty: Frame 10 years / Parts 3 years / Electronics 3 years / Labor 1 year
The bike’s main frame is made of steel, coated with anti-corrosive paint. There are though, several plastic parts that enter the composition of the frame. However, these are mostly frame covers, such as the shrouds for the machine’s drive mechanism or seat base, and they have a protective and cosmetic role. The weight of the user is held by the steel base assembly of the seat. The maximum weight capacity of the machine is 300 lbs (136 kg).
The frame main chassis consists of a single piece, which gives the bike superior overall sturdiness. It features a small stabilizer with a rubber cap at the middle, which improves the bike’s stability. The bike’s rear base rests on adjustable, sizeable stabilizers, while the front base is finished with rectangular, non-adjustable rubber pads.
The front base features caster wheels, which evidently help with the transport of the assembled machine. The rear bar integrates a handle which facilitates the tilting of the bike on its front wheels. The assembled bike is not excessively heavy. Considering that it weighs only 91.9 lbs (41.7 kg), almost anyone able to lift 40-45 lbs (18-20 kg) should be able to move it without difficulty.
This Nautilus bike has the same dimensions as the R614 model. It’s not an extremely large machine, but with its given footprint of approx 65″L x 28″W (166 x 72 cm), it may not be suitable for a small room. The frame cannot be folded, and it’s not designed to be stored up vertically.
Seat and handlebars
Needless to say, the main comfort factor of this bike, just as for any other recumbent cycle model, is the seat. As opposed to the R614 model which has a vented, hard plastic seat, the Nautilus R616 features a padded and contoured seat. It doesn’t have air cell cushioning such as the seat on the Ironman Triathlon X-Class 410 model, for example. It’s rather firm, but on the other hand, it offers all the comfort that anyone would expect from a recumbent bike’s seat.
The backrest of the seat is made of tough polyurethane material, featuring a vented design, to prevent your back from overheating during a more intense and prolonged workout. This backrest offers excellent lumbar support, featuring a convex shape, being contoured just as the seat, to adapt perfectly to the user’s body. The backrest does not offer any adjustability though, such as the one on the Diamondback 510SR.
The seat is 2-way adjustable. It glides on a rail similar to the ones used in rowers, featuring a locking mechanism with multiple position settings. Differently put, the seat can be adjusted back and forth in relation to the pedals, in order to accommodate comfortably users between 5’0″ and 6’7″ (152 cm – 201 cm)
When it comes to the handlebars, this fitness machine features both recumbent and front handlebars. The recumbent ones are attached to the seat and glide along with it on the adjustment rail. They integrate pulse sensors, thus, the console is able to track your pulse if you’re holding onto them. The handlebars on the console mast are pretty simple. The the most important aspect regarding them is that they’re not awkwardly placed, giving you the possibility to carry out pretty comfortable workouts by holding onto them as well. Both types of handlebars are covered in rubber foam padding, to supply a comfortable grip.
Resistance and drive
The Nautilus R616 recumbent bike features an eddy current resistance system. In other words, it uses a motorized magnetic brake to create drag onto the flywheel. The resistance is controlled exclusively from the console. You can adjust it as you pedal, but in case you opt for one of the preset programs, the machine will adjust resistance automatically.
There are 25 resistance levels available. The lower settings are pretty light, suitable for elderly users, or users who require recovery training. On the other hand, the 23-25 resistance settings are quite tough, simulating a steep climb, offering quite a challenge for anyone who wants a consistent cardio training.
Like most bikes with an eddy current brake, this model features a belt drive system. This being said, the bike is almost silent, being an excellent choice for apartment use. You can be sure that operating the bike won’t be heard from a floor to another or between rooms. Also, since the bike uses a belt for transmission, the belt doesn’t require periodical lubrication, as a chain would.
The pedaling motion is quiet, smooth and stable. The inertia-enhanced flywheel adds consistency to the pedaling, also improving stability.
The bike is equipped with a durable crankset, with solid steel crank arms. The pedals which complete the crank arms are wide enough to accommodate any athletic shoes and feature adjustable straps. They also feature standard threads, which makes it easy to find replacements for them in case they break or in case you want a different type of pedals. Evidently, the supplied pedals are not equipped with clips for spin shoes.
Pedaling in reverse is possible. Also, the console will continue to track values such as distance, speed etc, when you pedal backward.
Last but not least, since the bike uses a motorized, eddy current brake, it requires being connected to a power circuit. It comes with an adapter rated 120V 60Hz input / 9VDC 1500 mA output. The adapter connects to the flywheel casing at the front, a bit above the stabilizer base.
The Nautilus R616 recumbent bike includes a console almost identical with the console unit on the Schwinn 270 model. However, the Nautilus console is Bluetooth enabled. In other words, it can sync with another Bluetooth device (laptop, tablet or smartphone), using the Nautilus® Trainer app, to transfer your fitness data to NautilusConnect, or to MyFitnessPal. This way you can benefit from a superior training data analysis, and keep a better track of your progress and goals.
The console also has a USB port, thus, you can import/export your workout data via USB as well. On top of that, the USB port doubles as a media charging port.
The console display indicates speed, time, distance, RPM, calories, and heart rate. It also indicates the current level of resistance. There are 29 workout programs, including, 12 profile, 1 quick start, 9 for heart rate, 2 fitness tests, 1 recovery test, and 4 custom programs provided by this unit. The 4 custom programs give you the possibility to create your own workouts and re-use them. It’s also a great feature to have if multiple persons use the machine, so each user will have their own settings. Each user setting stores data such as name (with up to 10 characters), age, weight, height, gender and preferred workout values.
The Profile programs include workouts with the following names: Rolling Hills, Ride in the Park, Easy Tour, Stream Crossing, Pike’s Peak, Mount Hood, Pyramids, Summit Pass, Uphill Finish, Cross-Training, Interval, and Stairs. They’re segment-based programs, the name of each one suggesting its intensity and structure.
The 9 Heart Rate programs require you to use the EKG sensors built in the machine’s recumbent handlebars. However, the console is also telemetry enabled, so it can track pulse via an HR chest strap that operates within a 4.5-5.5 kHz range. An HR strap is not supplied with the machine, but it can work with a Polar Electro, or an uncoded POLAR model.
The Fitness Test programs are meant to determine your level of fitness, while the Recovery Test program indicates how your heart recovers from exercise.
Evidently, the Quick Start program is the “manual” mode of the machine, which gives you the possibility to pedal freely, adjusting resistance as you desire during your workout.
One last aspect regarding the machine’s console fitness capabilities includes goal tracking. You can set up goals for distance, calories and time, and follow your progress towards them.
The console uses two monitors. The top one is wider and indicates the matrix of your workout, while the bottom one is slimmer, and tracks your workout values. Both monitors feature a blue LED backlight. There are keys on the console for gradual and direct resistance adjustment, start and pause keys, and keys for goal tracking, user profiles, and programs.
The console integrates several amenities, including sound system, cooling fan, and a media shelf. The cooling fan features three speed settings. The sound system consists of two speakers, being compatible with most MP3 devices, smartphones, and tablets. It doesn’t exactly offer the quality of sound supplied by a dedicated surround sound system, but it does help if you want to keep your music close while avoiding to use earbuds or earphones during your workout. The tablet shelf is situated in the middle of the console and can accommodate tablets of most sizes.
Assembly and Maintenance
The most important parts of the bike, in other words, its drive and resistance mechanisms come ready-assembled. The whole drive system is attached to the main frame and enclosed by the plastic shrouds. The bike does require some assembly though. You will have to connect the base stabilizers to the frame, mount the seat, console mast, the console, and pedals, plus several other cosmetic covers. Plenty of screws to deal with, so the assembly may take one hour, or maybe one hour and a half.
Tools for assembly are included, as well as a very detailed owner’s manual, which offers step-by-step guidance with the assembly process.
Maintenance requires keeping the bike dust free, and that’s about it. The internal components don’t require maintenance at all.
- Sturdy frame, commercial quality construction;
- Can support users up to 300 lbs;
- Adjustable stabilizers;
- Transport wheels;
- Sizeable seat, padded, and contoured, for maximum comfort;
- 2-way adjustable seat, the bike being able to accommodate users between 5’0″ and 6’7″.
- Convex backrest, with a vented design, and excellent lumbar support;
- Pulse sensors and telemetry enabled console;
- 25 levels of resistance;
- 29 workout programs, including 4 customizable user profiles;
- Bluetooth connectivity;
- USB data transfer and charging port;
- Amenities such as sound system, cooling fan, tablet shelf and bottle holder;
- Smooth and quiet operation;
- Easy to assemble;
- Basically, no maintenance required;
- Excellent warranty;
- Excellent price/quality ratio.
- A tablet placed on the media shelf will cover the top monitor of the console;
- The fan is not extremely powerful;
- HR chest strap not included.
The Nautilus R616 is definitely a recumbent bike built by commercial standards but comes at a much more affordable price than other similar models. It’s equipped with a motorized eddy current resistance system, offering 25 distinct resistance settings. It’s console, not only that 29 workout programs, it’s also Bluetooth enabled and compatible with the Nautilus Trainer 2 app which offers several other features to keep you motivated. In all, it’s an excellent trainer for light to medium-intensity workouts, muscle toning, stamina development, and weight loss, a trainer with a great price/quality ratio.