Mr. Captain Red Walnut Water Rowing Machine

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Mr. Captain Red Walnut

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320 lbs58.5 lbsWaterTime,

The Mr. Captain Red Walnut rower is not far different in terms of design and features than the Mr. Captain Vintage Oak that we’ve already covered here. It’s also pretty similar to the WaterRower models, and since this brand is rather new (in 2020) to the market, it’s quite a beat cheaper than the WaterRower models. It also comes with a performance monitor featuring Bluetooth connectivity.

Key Features and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 82L x 22W x 20H inches (208L x 56W x 51H cm)
  • Assembled weight: 58.5 lbs (26.5 kg)
  • Supported weight: 320 lbs (145 kg)
  • Frame: Solid red walnut wood
  • Footrests: Size-adjustable, with straps
  • Resistance type: Water
  • Exercise meter: 3 workout modes, Bluetooth

Frame construction

As the title suggests, the Mr. Captain Red Walnut rower features a wooden frame made of durable red walnut wood. It has a dual-rail design system for improved sturdiness and motion stability. Its rails and seat are rated for a maximum user weight capacity of 320 lbs (145 kg). Even though it is not advertised as a commercial-grade machine, it’s definitely close to the sturdiness and range of features of at least a light-commercial model.

The fully assembled rower is fairly large. With all the parts assembled, it is approx. 82″ (208 cm) long, and 22″ (56 cm) wide. Its rails are long enough to accommodate users up to 6’5″ (196 cm) with no problem, allowing a complete leg extension.

Like many other wooden frame water resistance rowers, the Mr. Captain Red Walnut model can be stored in a vertical position. The top of its front section features a set of small stabilizers for a better vertical positioning. When stored vertically, the unit’s footprint becomes 22″W x 20″D (56 x 51 cm) while its height becomes 82″ (208 cm).

The rower is not extremely heavy. With all the parts assembled, its net weight is approx. 58.5 (26.5 kg). This is without water in the tank. The exact capacity of the tank is not specified, but as a general idea, it should be 3.5-4 gallons (13.2 – 15 liters). Thus, with the tank filled to the top marking, the unit weighs approx. 87.5 – 91.4 lbs (39.7 – 41.5 kg).

The rower is fairly easy to relocate once assembled. Its front base features a set of small wheels that considerably ease its transport. Also, the rails rest on two sets of large rubber stabilizers to prevent floor damage.

Seat and other parts

The Mr. Captain Red Walnut rower is equipped with a seat designed for optimal comfort. Its top integrates a layer of foam padding covered by a layer of durable vinyl material. It is also contoured to adapt better to the user’s body.

The base of the seat combines steel and wood elements. The side wood panels are made from the same red walnut wood as the rest of the frame. The wheels are sustained by a set of durable steel rods. The wheels are eight in number. Four of them slide on top of the rails, the other four slide on the rails’ inner side for improved stability. The wheels integrate sealed ball bearings for a smooth seat motion. They also have a rubber layer on the outside to minimize noise.

As we’ve mentioned above, the seat is durable enough to support users up to 320 lbs (145 kg). Its top stands at approx. 12″ (31 cm) above floor level. The rail system is horizontal so the machine provides a neutral and ample rowing motion.

The Mr. Captain Red Walnut rower is equipped with a set of large and adjustable footrests. They are large enough to accommodate athletic shoes of all sizes. They feature adjustable straps and heel guards to keep your feet completely secured during rowing.

The unit’s footrests are attached to an oblique board piece. Their angle is non-adjustable and they do not pivot as it is the case for other rowing machines. Their angle is approx. 45°-50° so they provide an optimal positioning for your feet.

The rower comes with a straight pulling handle featuring a set of ergonomic grips, brown in color to match the rest of the machine. It is not equipped with pulse sensors as it is the case for other, more expensive machines. It is attached to a heavy-duty nylon strap which is highly resistant to abrasion. The fact that the machine uses a strap and not a chain as its main element of the drive system can be quite a plus. That’s because the usage of the machine is quieter, smoother, and the strap does not require lubrication.

Resistance system

The Mr. Captain Red Walnut rower is equipped with a standard water resistance system. It features a durable polycarbonate tank with an integrated impeller that spins into the water when you pull the handle. The tank itself does not have any water level adjustment mechanism or a dual-chamber like the First Degree Fitness rowers. However, a rechargeable electrical water pump is included with the rower which makes it easier to add or remove water from the tank.

Although the rower doesn’t have any integrated resistance adjustment elements, it does provide a dynamic response during rowing. This means that the resistance is variable. It depends on the strength and speed you put behind each stroke. For example, if you pull the handle faster, the impeller will also spin faster inside the water and generate more resistance. This is quite a plus as the rowing motion resembled the sensation of rowing a real boat through the water.

The rower is pretty quiet during usage. Even though the spinning of the impeller inside the tank can be heard, it’s pretty soft and shouldn’t cover the sound of a TV even if the volume is on a lower setting. Also, most users have described the noise generated by the machine as relaxing.

Performance monitor and other accessories

The performance monitor unit included with this Mr. Captain water resistance rower offers quite an impressive range of features. It is equipped with an LCD display divided into multiple sub-sections, which tracks time, strokes per minute, total strokes, calories burned, distance, and pulse. For the pulse reading function, you will need a wireless HR chest strap as the machine doesn’t have any contact sensors.

The monitor unit offers three workout modes. These are Manual, Interval Custom, and Target. As the term suggests, the Interval Mode gives you the possibility to create a custom workout interval with rest/work periods. The Target mode gives you the possibility to select targets for various metrics, such as time, strokes, calories, etc. When a target is selected, the unit will countdown from it until it reaches zero, indicating when you have completed your set up goal. And finally, the Manual mode allows you to just row, and the monitor will indicate your SPM, strokes, time elapsed, etc.

Bluetooth connectivity is also available with the performance monitor of the rower. The unit is compatible with the FitShow app for iOS and Android. This app offers the possibility to track your progress online and makes available several other features as well.

The unit battery-powered. It starts up when you begin rowing. It also automatically enters idle mode to save battery if it does not detect any activity on the machine for several minutes.

In terms of other accessories, there are quite a few included with this machine. The most notable ones are the cover, the phone holder, and the electric water pump. The cover is dust and moisture-proof; even though the machine is for indoor use only, this can still be useful if it’s going to be out of use for a while. The phone holder consists of a small shelf integrated at the bottom of the exercise meter. Therefore, if you sync the meter with your smartphone via Bluetooth, you can place your phone right on the meter to use the app’s interface. The pump is battery-powered and can be recharged via USB cable. It’s quite a neat accessory for adding or removing water from the tank in case you want to increase or decrease the rowing resistance.

Assembly and Maintenance

The machine’s water resistance mechanism comes pre-assembled and attached to the front part of the frame. The rest of the parts do require user assembly, though. You will have to attach the rails and the seat. The included manual provides step-by-step instructions and all the necessary tools are included. This being said, the assembly task shouldn’t take more than 30-40 minutes.

For maintenance, the water inside the tank should be periodically treated with a chlorine pill. It’s best to use rower chlorine pills, not pool chlorine tablets. Other than this, you only have to keep the unit clean, especially the rails, to prevent any damage to the seat wheels.

The Pros

  • Sturdy frame – can support users up to 320 lbs;
  • Aesthetic design made of red walnut wood;
  • Can be stored vertically to save space;
  • Easy to handle and transport;
  • Rubberized stabilizers for extra floor protection;
  • Water-resistance system, providing the most natural rowing feel that you can get;
  • Cushioned ergonomic seat;
  • Adjustable footrests;
  • Multi-window performance monitor included;
  • Three workout modes on the exercise meter (manual, target, and interval);
  • Bluetooth connectivity and compatibility with the FitShow App (for iOS and Android);
  • Smooth and quiet operation;
  • All the necessary tools are included;
  • Electric (rechargeable) water pump included;
  • Protective cover included;
  • Phone holder integrated into the exercise meter;
  • Little maintenance required;
  • Easy to assemble.

The Cons

  • No backlight on the exercise meter;
  • The HR chest strap for pulse reading is not included.

Bottom Line

The Mr. Captain Red Walnut is a water resistance rower featuring a durable, professional-looking frame, a large water tank for extra resistance, and a performance monitor with Bluetooth connectivity, compatible with the FitShow fitness app. An automatic, rechargeable water pump and a cover are also included with the rower. It’s an excellent machine for a full-body cardio workout, muscle toning, interval training, and weight loss. And finally, it is considerably more affordable than other similar machines with an outstanding price/quality ratio.

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