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|Frame: 5 years
Parts: 1 year
One of the recumbent bikes with an excellent price/quality ratio that you can find at the moment is the XTERRA SB2.5R. Not only this bike will provide you with the right training setting for your daily cardio, it can also help you burn a great deal of calories, by using the specific fat loss program routines. Even though it’s not an upright exercise bike with the full array of features, it offers just about everything you would want from a decent bike. So, let’s see what this bike can do for you.
Details and Specifications
- Assembled dimensions: 53.4L x 25.2W x 43.7H inches (135.6L x 64W x 111H cm)
- Flywheel weight: 22 lbs (10 kg)
- Product weight: 108 lbs (49 kg)
- Supported weight: 300 lbs (136 kg)
- Handlebars: Fixed, with pulse sensors
- Seat: Adjustable
- Pedals: Weighted, with straps
- Brakes: Eddy current
- Resistance: Adjustable, 16 levels
- Performance monitor: 24 workout programs
- Bottle/Cup holder: Yes
- Speakers: Incorporated in the console
- Warranty: Frame 5 years / Parts 1 year
Frame, seat and handlebars
The SB2.5R recumbent bike from XTERRA features, a 2-piece, solid steel frame. The seat rail comes connected to rear piece of the frame, while the drive system is attached to the front piece. Just as in pretty much other stationary bike, the bases of the frame require to be attached as well. They’re finished with adjustable stabilizers, to supply maximum stability. The assembled bike is also rather heavy, with a weight of 108 lbs. (49 kg), which adds to its overall stability and sturdiness. Therefore, to put it differently, even if you’re close to the maximum supported weight of the bike, you can be sure it won’t rock or shift from side to side as you pedal.
Compared to other stationary upright bikes, this XTERRA model has a medium footprint. It’s not exactly one of the smallest machines, but it’s not one of the bulkiest either. It takes about 25″W x 53.4″L (64 x 135.6 cm) of floor space and should fit pretty much okay even into a rather small room.
The seat supplied with this stationary bike provides excellent comfort, both the saddle and the backrest being cushioned. This reduces the chances of back soreness and back pain which may result from riding a regular bike, by a lot. Also, the saddle is contoured, with the adequate shape to prevent legs from scraping to edge of the seat. Needless to say, the whole seat assembly is adjustable, featuring an oblique rail system. There are several adjustment levels on the seat, the bike being able to accommodate comfortably, users between 4’11” – 6’5″ (150 – 196 cm) tall. Of course, users even taller can use the bike, but in this case they won’t benefit from a full leg stretch.
The bike features both recumbent handlebars and front handlebars. The recumbent handrests are attached to the seat assembly and move with the seat as you adjust it. They also have integrated grip sensors for tracking pulse. The front handlebar assembly actually has a great design, with the main post curved towards the user. Therefore, as opposed to many other recumbent bike models, the front handlebars are within the users reach, offering great comfort for a leaned-forward workout posture. In other bikes, it’s really difficult to reach the front handlebars, especially if you’re short. Both handrests and handlebars are padded with foam-rubber material, to supply a comfortable, anti-slip grip. Also, both types of handlebars are non-adjustable on this bike.
Drive and brake system
The XTERRA SB2.5R features an eddy current brake system, involving a magnet and a servo motor. This means the resistance is adjusted exclusively from the console, and works by adjusting the magnet’s pull onto the flywheel, to create drag. Also, the adjustment of the resistance is done automatically, if you choose to workout with one of the built-in apps. Since it’s actually a magnetic resistance system, the parts involved do not touch, and there’s basically no wear and tear. Also, the bike requires to be plugged into a 110V power circuit. It comes with a power cord and an American-type plug. The cord plugs into the machine near the front base.
The bike offers 16 levels of resistance. The lowest level simulates the ride of a recumbent bike on a flat road. They’re great for recovery training, or warm up. On the other hand, the highest levels of resistance are quite a challenge, reminding of a steep climb.
The bike is belt-driven, using a poly V belt, resistant to stretching and rated for many years of use. This also means that the bike is pretty quiet, and the drive system pretty much does not require any maintenance. The flywheel is slightly heavier than in most recumbent bikes. With a weight of 22 lbs (10 kg), it supplies a smooth, fluid pedaling motion. The crankset is pretty solid even though it basically doesn’t support any of the user’s weight. The crank arms are steel-made, finished with weighted, self-adjusting pedals, with straps.
The performance tracking monitor does not offer a wide selection of amenities, like other, more expensive bikes. However, it does have a built-in sound system, which is compatible with most smart devices and MP3 players. The quality of sound rendered by these speakers isn’t top-notch, but the sound is pretty clear. They actually offer a slightly better sound quality than one of the most advanced smartphones. The console also has an accessory compartment, to hold your phone or MP3 player. There’s no tablet holder or bottle holder, however.
When it comes to the fitness-oriented functions, this console is quite capable. To begin with, it indicates time, speed, distance, calories burned, RPM and heart rate. There’s an odometer function which displays the total accumulated distance on the machine. Also, the console offers target functions for heart rate, calories, time and distance. Therefore, it gives you the possibility to create goals to achieve with each workout, feature that helps a lot with keeping you motivated.
Of course, the console provides 24 workout apps, including: 1 manual, 12 preset, 1 watt control, 1 for body fat measurement, 5 for heart rate and 4 custom user programs. The customization of programs uses your typical columns and rows format, according to which the resistance will automatically adjust. The 4 user programs is a great feature to have is 1-4 other persons use the machine, or if you want to quickly alternate between custom programs. The 12 preset programs include: ROLLING, VALLEY, FAT BURN, RAMP, STEPS, OBSTACLE, INTERVALS, PLATEAU, CLIMBING, OFF ROAD, HILL, and FASTREK.
The console is pretty easy to use. To select your workout routine, you basically have to use 4 keys: MODE, Up/Down Arrows, and ENTER. On the manual program you can gradually increase / decrease resistance as you pedal. The display is pretty wide, and backlit to ensure an excellent readability. Also, the console is telemetry enabled, which means it can also read your pulse via a HR chest strap.
Assembly and Maintenance
The XTERRA SB2.5R is far from being an exercising machine difficult to assemble. However, since it’s not exactly a light one, you might want another person’s help, especially if it requires carrying up a set of stairs. The box includes the tools for the assembly and the owner’s manual which guides you though it. Actually, the whole assembly part doesn’t require that much. The seat rail assembly and the drive/brake systems are already put together and attached to the frame. All you have to do is attach the main 2 pieces of the frame together, add the bases of the bike, connect the seat assembly, the front handlebar post and the console. The whole task should not take more than an hour.
Even though the bike has stabilizer feet, it’s best to place it on a mat to prevent damage to the floor, as your weight will add to the 108 lbs weight of the bike.
Maintenance doesn’t call for much either. Basically, all you have to do is keep the bike clean, and check if the bolts hold tight in place, from time to time.
- Bike with a solid and stable build, not extremely large.
- Cushioned backrest and saddle.
- Adjustable seat.
- Handrests at a comfortable distance from the saddle. Also with built-in EGK sensors.
- Front handlebars within the reach of the user, offering a decent setting for a leaned-forward workout.
- Sound system.
- iPod/Mp3/Smartphone holder.
- 24 levels of resistance.
- 24 workout programs.
- Goal tracking functions.
- Quiet bike.
- Basically maintenance free.
- Easy to assemble.
- Decent warranty plan.
- No tablet / book holder.
- No bottle holder.
- No transport wheels.
If you’re looking for a decent stationary recumbent bike, the XTERRA SB2.5R is IT. It comes for a great price/quality ratio, and supplies just about all the fitness possibilities you would expect from a recumbent bike. It’s an excellent bike for cardio exercising, but it does have several programs that allow you to engage in a consistent, calorie burning workout. It’s not quite a gym-rated bike, but on the other hand it won’t break the bank. All in all, it’s a well-build bike, which should serve you well for many years, even with daily use.