Schwinn Airdyne AD6 Exercise Bike
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|Frame: 15 years
Parts: 3 years
Electronics: 2 years
Labor: 6 months
Schwinn offers several types of fitness machines, including upright bikes, recumbent bikes, ellipticals and treadmills. But they dedicate a separate category to their Airdyne products. These are basically upright bikes, offering the possibility to perform seated aerobic workouts of various intensities, similar to the Schwinn 170 for example, but as their name suggests, they feature air resistance rather than magnetic resistance.
This type of resistance system comes with several advantages, one of them being the fact that resistance increases with how fast you pedal. Due to this aspect, these bikes are great for interval training.
In this post we’ll address to the Schwinn Airdyne AD6. This is the intermediate model within the Airdyne product category, but also the model which so far benefits from the best feedback from users all over the world.
Technical Details and Specifications
- Assembled dimensions: 49.7L x 25.7W x 50.9H inches (126L x 65W x 129H cm)
- Assembled weight: 112 lbs (50.8 kg)
- Supported weight: 300 lbs (136 kg)
- Handlebars: Mobile
- Seat: 2-way adjustable
- Pedals: Weighted, with straps
- Resistance: Air
- Fitness meter: Time, speed, distance, RPM, calories, watts, pulse
- Included accessories: Bottle holder,
- Warranty: Frame 15 years / Parts 3 years / Electronics 2 years / Labor 6 months
Frame and parts
Evidently, since this Schwinn exercise bike can support users up to 300 lbs (136 kg), most of its frame components are made of steel. However, the machine does integrate several parts made of heavy-duty plastic material. These are the lateral shrouds that cover the pulleys and the fan, which is made of thick ABS plastic. All steel parts are double coated with anti-corrosive gray enamel, except for the seat post which has a chrome finish.
The bike’s bases are equipped with rubberized, adjustable stabilizers, offering the possibility to achieve perfect stability even on uneven flooring. The front base also features small rubber wheels, in order to facilitate the relocation of the assembled bike. In case you’re wondering, the assembled machine is rather heavy, weighing approx. 112 lbs (50.8 kg). But by tilting it forward on its wheels for transport, you’ll basically deal with less than half its total weight.
Overall, this Schwinn Airdyne model is not extremely large. It’s approx. 50″ long (126 cm) and 26″ wide (65 cm), being suitable even for smaller rooms. Also, the tallest point of the machine is given by its handlebars, which reach approx. 51″ (129 cm).
The seat supplied with this fitness machine features a similar design to the other upright bike models, such as the Kettler GIRO P. It’s a pretty wide and padded seat, offering much more comfort than most seats of indoor cycling bikes. It’s also contoured, in order to adapt better to your body and workout, and has a pretty standard connection system to its post, which means you should easily find a replacement in case you want a different model.
The seat features only 2-way adjustability (up / down). It’s post has 10 adjustment positions, the distance between the locking holes being approx. 2″ (5 cm), with a total adjustment span of cca 18″ (45 cm). This being said, the Schwinn Airdyne AD6 can accommodate users between 5′ and 6’5″ (152 – 196 cm) with no problem.
When it comes to the bike’s handlebars, they feature a simple design, with simple grips, coated with rubber foam for maximum comfort. The handlebars are mobile, and move back and forth as you pedal. They are connected to the pedals inner bars, and they cannot be locked. For as long as you pedal, the arms will also move.
Resistance and drive
As the product’s name and the photos suggest, the bike features an air resistance system, somewhat similar to the air rowers such as Concept2 Model D, or Stamina X. The main resistance generating element is the big ABS fan-flywheel, situated at the front of the bike. Resistance proportionally increases with your pedaling speed. In other words, the faster you pedal, the higher the resistance. However, the fan casing does not have a damper to adjust the air flow for the fan. Therefore, you can’t add or reduce its base resistance, so the only way to obtain higher resistance is to pedal faster.
As a general idea, the resistance supplied by this exercise bike promotes light to medium workouts. And since resistance is generated by pedaling speed, it’s a great bike for interval workouts.
The bike’s drive system involves two pulleys and two belts, which transfer the rotation of the pedals to the fan. As we’ve mentioned above, the handlebars of the machine are connected to the pedals, and will move back and forth was you pedal. The crank arms are similar to the ones of road bikes, made of solid steel. But even though they are highly durable, it’s not recommended to stand-up on the pedals. This is after all an upright bike, not made for stand-up workout routines like spin bikes.
The pedals supplied with the Schwinn AD6 are simple, weighted pedals with adjustable straps, made of heavy-duty nylon material. One important aspect regarding them is that they feature 1/2 threads, not the 9/16 standard. Therefore, in case you want to replace them make sure you choose the right ones.
One of the most important aspects that we must cover here, regards the noise level. Evidently, since it’s an air resistance model, it’s not exactly silent like a magnetic exercise bike. The noise produced by the fan, is basically similar to the noise created by a large electrical fan. Differently put, the faster you pedal, the louder the sound. When pedaling fast, you will have to turn up your TV or sound system a bit. But as a general idea, the sound isn’t loud enough to bother the neighbors, or the people in adjacent rooms. So, this being said, the machine is suitable for apartment use.
Reverse pedaling is possible, but the crankset of the bike is “fixed”. In other words, you cannot “coast” on it, as the pedals and arms will continue to move as the fan moves. However, if you need to stop your pedaling motion, you can rest your feet on the pegs under the arms of the machine, and workout by moving only the handlebars.
Since the bike uses a fan for resistance, there will obviously be a shift in the air flow of the room. But in case you’re wondering, the “breeze” generated by the fan is not directed at you (at the user). You will only feel it if you pedal in reverse.
The meter supplied with the Schwinn AD6 Airdyne is not an advanced one. In other words, it doesn’t have preset workout programs such as the LifeCore Fitness 1060UB, for example. However, it does offer quite a bit more than a basic meter unit. First of all, it displays 7 workout metrics: RPM, time, speed, distance, watts, calories and pulse, metrics which can all be viewed simultaneously on screen. Distance can be displayed in miles or km, while speed can be shown in km/h or MPH. It also has a goal setting function for time. In other words, you can setup a target time for your workout. There is also an Odometer function, which shows the sum of all workout distances.
When it comes to tracking pulse, the bike itself doesn’t have any pulse sensors. The console however, is telemetry enabled and can read pulse through a HR chest strap transmitter, which operates between 4.5 – 5.5 kHz.
The meter is fairly easy to operate. Features three buttons: Up, Down and Start/Stop. The Up / Down keys are used for navigation or adding a value to your time goals, while Start / Stop is for turning it on and off, and for the Pause function, and for resetting all the values.
The console is battery powered, requiring 2x AA-type batteries.
The only accessory supplied with the Airdyne AD6 is the bottle holder, which attaches to the small frame of of the console.
However, there are several optional accessories, including an AirDyne Reading Rack, AirDyne Wind Screen and a remote heart rate chest strap.
Assembly and Maintenance
The Schwinn AirDyne AD6 requires some assembly, task that is far from being difficult though. It shouldn’t take more than 30-45 min, and you shouldn’t need to hire someone to do it for you. The box includes an assembly manual which will guide you though the whole operation. All tools required are also supplied.
The pulleys, the crankset and the fan come already attached to the frame. All you have to add are the bases, the seat, handlebars, pedals, console frame and console.
For maintenance, you don’t have to worry about the internal parts. They come pre-lubricated, and shouldn’t require any additional lubrication for a long time. Basically, all you have to do is keep the machine clean, and periodically check its joints, bolts and nuts, in order to re-tighten them if its the case. Moisture (or perspiration) should be removed from the console.
- Sturdy and stable frame, able to support users up to 300 lbs (136 kg);
- Professional-looking design, aspect that can serve as a good motivation factor;
- Adjustable levelers on both bases, and transport wheel on the front base;
- Mobile handlebars for arms workouts;
- Ergonomic, contoured seat;
- Air resistance system, great for interval workouts;
- Fitness meter tracking 7 workout statistics, including: RPM, speed, time, distance, pulse, watts and calories;
- Basically maintenance free;
- Easy to assemble;
- Excellent warranty and customer support from Schwinn.
- Not a very quiet machine, but not extremely loud either, as it’s suitable for apartment use.
The Schwinn AD6 Airdyne is an upright exercise bike designed for light to medium cardio workouts. It’s an air resistance bike, and due to this fact it’s great for interval cardio training. In fact, it’s a fitness machine great for cardio workouts, toning arms and legs muscles, building stamina, and of course, for losing weight. You can actually lose up to 5-600 calories per hour with this bike. It features a solid construction, and high-quality internal components, aspects reflected by the consistent warranty offered with it. It’s not exactly one of the most affordable fitness bikes, but considering that it’s a model made to last, it’s definitely an excellent investment for anyone who want to stay fit.