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Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E3912 Elliptical Trainer

UnitSizeSupported
weight
Flywheel
weight
ResistanceConsole
Sunny SF-E3912

Check Discounted Price
L:59"
W:23.5"
H:64"
330 lbs13.2 lbsManual
magnetic,
16 levels
24
programs

The Sunny SF-E3912 is one of the new elliptical trainers released by Sunny Health & Fitness in 2019. As opposed to the SF-E3804 model that we’ve already reviewed, this one has an automatic (motorized) resistance system. It also offers a greater weight capacity and a more solid overall construction.

Key Features and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 59L x 23.5W x 64H inches (150L x 60W x 163H cm)
  • Assembled weight: 104.8 lbs (47.5 kg)
  • Supported weight: 330 lbs (150 kg)
  • Stride: 14 inches (35.5 cm)
  • Incline: No
  • Resistance: Motorized-magnetic, 16 levels
  • Console: 24 programs, Recovery function
  • Extras: Tablet holder, bottle holder
  • Warranty: Frame 3 years, Parts 180 days

Frame construction and parts

The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E3912 features a steel frame construction with the base frame completely covered by ABS guards. All the steel parts are coated with a corrosion-resistant and chip-resistant paint finish, gray in color, this being the only color available for this elliptical.

The machine does not fold, but compared to other elliptical trainers, it has a smaller footprint. With the frame fully assembled, it is only 59″ (150 cm) long, and 23.5″ (60 cm) wide. It is recommended, though, to leave at least two feet of clearance on each side of it, and at least one foot of clearance at the front and rear for unhindered usage.

The fully assembled unit is fairly heavy. It weighs approx. 105 lbs (~47.5 kg). This being said, it provides excellent stability. Plus, its rear base has adjustable, rubberized stabilizers, while the front base rests on rubber pads. The front base is equipped with transport wheels, so the fully assembled unit can be easily moved to a storage location.

The Sunny SF-E3912 is equipped with two sets of handlebars, one mobile, one fixed. The mobile handlebars feature long grips, with ball grips at the top. They are directly attached to the pedal bars, so they cannot be locked to remain stationary. Differently put, they continue to move for as long as the pedals are moving.

The fixed handlebars integrate a set of pulse sensors. Thus, by holding on to them, the console unit can monitor your pulse rate. Both handlebars have rubberized grips for optimal comfort and hand adherence.

Since it’s a rear-drive elliptical trainer, the pedals of the Sunny SF-E3912 are attached to a set of heavy-duty steel bars. They can support users up to 330 lbs (150 kg) which is quite impressive for a home-use machine. The pedal trays are made of durable ABS material. They are large enough to accommodate athletic shoes of all sizes. They have front and inner borders, and a textured surface to provide extra foot stability. However, the pedals do not have extra cushioning or articulation, nor they can be adjusted.

Elliptical path, stride, and step-up height

Most elliptical machines with a rear-drive feature an elliptical path that is slightly inclined forward. The same goes for this Sunny elliptical trainer. This being said, the pedaling motion resembles a descension of a very soft ramp. This can be a plus, as a ride on this machine puts more focus on your glutes.

The Sunny SF-E3912 does not have an incline system. Also, its stride is non-adjustable. Its stride is also not extremely long. It measures approx. 14″ (35.5 cm), so the machine may not provide a satisfying range of motion for users over 6’3″ – 6’4″ (190 – 193 cm). But nonetheless, as long as they don’t exceed the 330 lbs (150 kg) weight capacity, any user can exercise on this machine and benefit from a pretty consistent and low impact cardio workout.

The pedal step-up height is approx. 10″ (25 cm). Conversely, at their highest point, the pedals are situated at approx. 16″ (41 cm) above floor level. Therefore, it is recommended to use the machine in a room with a ceiling that is at least 22″ (56 cm) higher than your own height.

Drive and resistance

The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E3912 elliptical trainer features a motorized-magnetic resistance system. This means it requires an external power source in order to make available the resistance adjustment. A US standard power adapter (9V/1.0A) is included with the unit. The resistance adjustment is automatic. Therefore, depending on the program in use, the machine can auto-adjust the pedal resistance.

The unit’s resistance system consists of an internal magnetic brake and a servo motor. As you select a specific resistance level from the console, the motor will change the position of the brake, increasing or decreasing the intensity of the internal magnetic field, which results in more or less pedaling difficult.

The machine offers 16 levels of resistance. The first level is fairly light, offering the possibility to train on a basic level. This is great for users who require recovery training, users with certain disabilities, or elderly users. Conversely, the 15-16 tension levels deliver considerably more resistance, great for anyone who wants a more consistent training regimen.

The internal flywheel isn’t extremely heavy. It weighs 13.2 lbs (6 kg). However, it has a perimeter-weighted structure which improves inertia and the overall stability. Therefore, the pedaling motion is very smooth, delivering a sure-foot sensation, with an almost inexistent impact on the joints.

Most fitness machines with a magnetic resistance system feature a belt drivetrain. The Sunny SF-E3912 does not make an exception. It integrates a heavy-duty belt, which provides excellent traction. Since it’s a belt drive, it does not require any lubrication or periodic maintenance. It also provides a very quiet, and vibration-free pedaling motion.

Console

The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E3912 features a mid-range console. To begin with, it has a large LCD display with LED backlight for superior readability. The display is divided into multiple subsections in order to show as many workout metrics as possible at once. It indicates time, RPM, speed, distance, total distance, calories, watts, and pulse. The speed and distance values are shown only in imperial units (MPH and miles); you cannot set them to metric units. Also, the console can only read your pulse through the grip sensors integrated into the fixed handlebars. It is not telemetric and cannot track your pulse through a wireless transmitter.

The console does not have any online connectivity functions and cannot communicate with any online fitness apps. However, it has its own 24 workout programs. The first program (P1) is the manual program. This allows you to adjust the resistance as you like from the Up/Down controls of the unit during your workout. The P2-P13 programs are preset. Each one provides a specific workout. For example, you have a Peak program, a Hills program, and an Interval program among them. For each program, the resistance can be adjusted between level 1 and level 16.

The P14 is the Watt Control program. For this program, you can select a watt value, and the console will auto-adjust the resistance offering you the possibility to maintain a constant watt output. The P15 program is the Body Fat calculator. This program will prompt you to input your personal data, such as weight, height, gender, and age, in order to calculate your Body Mass Index.

The next 5 programs are Heart Rate based. P16 is the Target HR program. It allows you to select a target Heart Rate and the pulse indicator will flash on the display if you exceed the selected Target HR. P17-P20 have preset HR targets, these being 55%, 65%, 75%, and 85%. The console auto-adjusts the resistance during each one of these programs if your pulse raises above the HR zone or drops under it.

The P21-P24 programs are user-specific. Each user can set their own program, selecting time, distance load, and more. This being said, the console can save up to four custom programs.

It’s important to mention that the console has a Recovery function. This can be used at the end of your workout to determine your current fitness level. It basically measures how long it takes your pulse to return to a normal BPM after the workout and based on the result, it gives you a fitness rating between F1 (excellent) and F6 (poor).

The console also integrates a tablet holder which is placed above the console display. Thus, by placing your phone or tablet on it, you won’t block the view of your workout metrics. Plus, the top section of the console has a sticker with the heart rate zones that you should aim for depending on your age, in order to benefit from a better aerobic output, fat burn, etc.

Assembly and Maintenance

The main body of the elliptical comes pre-assembled, with all the ABS covers attached. Therefore, you only need to attach the base bars, the front mast, the pedal bars, the pedal trays, the fixed and moving arms, and the console. This may take more than an hour, but the task is not too complicated. The included manual provides all the necessary instructions and a basic toolkit is included.

The internal components don’t need any maintenance, at least not for a long period of time. Therefore, in terms of maintenance, it is only recommended to wipe off the sweat that may drop on the frame at the end of the workout and periodically check for loose bolts or parts. The unit’s joints may also require lubrication from time to time.

The Pros

  • Sturdy construction – can support users up to 330 lbs;
  • Adjustable stabilizers on the rear base;
  • Transport wheels on the front base;
  • Fixed and mobile handlebars;
  • Balanced flywheel providing a smooth and steady pedaling motion with a consistent momentum;
  • Extra-large, non-slip, durable pedals;
  • 16 levels of eddy current resistance;
  • Multi-window LCD display console to show all the workout metrics simultaneously;
  • LED backlight on the console display;
  • The console can track time, distance, total distance, speed, RPM, watts, pulse, and calories burned;
  • Goal functions for time, distance, calories, and pulse;
  • 24 workout programs;
  • Recovery function included;
  • Tablet holder included;
  • Heart rate intervals sheet on the console;
  • Quiet operation;
  • Easy to assemble;
  • Little maintenance required;
  • Decent warranty.

The Cons

  • The calories reading isn’t too accurate;
  • No online connectivity.

Summary

The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E3912 is an elliptical trainer made for home use. It features an automatic magnetic resistance system with 16 tension levels and a console with 24 workout programs. It also has a fairly decent weight capacity, being able to hold users up to 330 lbs (150 kg). It’s a great machine for a low-impact cardio workout, interval training, recovery training, stamina development, and weight loss.

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