Attention owners of Model D and Model E Indoor Rowers

read only section for reference and search purposes.

Postby johnlvs2run » May 3rd, 2007, 3:46 pm

Too much sugar, artificial or otherwise. :)
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Postby neilgunton » May 3rd, 2007, 3:57 pm

PaulS said:
"I, unlike you perhaps, do not go rocking the boat when I am confused, as I prefer to come from a bit stronger position than 'I've heard too many different stories, so there must be something terribly out of whack going on.', it just takes a bit more time and thought that way, and saves a lot of backtracking.

Come back and rock all you want if the situation is not resolved to your satisfaction. Near as I can see so far, you've only fanned the flammers (others that now seem heel bent that something is terribly amiss.), and how productive is that?"

Paul,

Thanks for the patronizing reply, but I don't need your permission or blessing to post anything here that I feel warrants discussion. If you don't like it then feel free to ignore it. But don't tell me not to post; that is the equivalent of attempting to tell me to shut up, and I strongly resent that.

The "stories" I am recounting here are not hearsay. They come directly from the company itself.

One of the big issues in this affair is the very lack of response from Concept2 regarding their stance on replacing the faulty parts, combined with the conflicting information being given out by different members of the company, with regard to something that has a large and potentially significant impact on many people. To wit: Many people have purchased brand new machines in the last few months, which now turn out to have a major design flaw which could result in structural failure, and Concept2 has said that they are not going to be replacing the faulty parts (unless they show actual cracks), but rather send out a DIY patch kit; a solution which many people have already indicated they find totally inadequate. I'm sorry if you can't grasp that this is a significant matter for discussion. Again, feel free to disagree, but don't tell me not to talk about it.

/Neil
Last edited by neilgunton on May 3rd, 2007, 4:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby johnlvs2run » May 3rd, 2007, 4:20 pm

As an update, I requested the reinforcement kit from online.
http://www.concept2.com/us/support/rowe ... asp?bhcp=1

Concept2 sent an email that the target ship date should be on or before May 15, 2007,
and that email notification will be sent when the item has been shipped.
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Postby PaulS » May 3rd, 2007, 5:33 pm

HC! I didn't tell anyone "not to post"! Now it's you "making things up", Neil.

If I wanted to say shaddup, I'd say shaddup! I might even add in a "punk", but in the many years of participating in the forum that sort of thing has only been done twice, to the same person, and there was a certain degree of humor in the whole interchange. Why don't you simply ignore my request for being reasonable and patient, if that is so easy to do, as you suggest to me?

I'm not trying to bust your chops, but as you say, "I'm not going to take any crap".

To wit: I have purchased two Model E's that are effected by this, so I'm not unsympathetic to those that are in the same situation. It sounds as if your machine may well be one of the first "stronger" ones to come out, hopefully you will be as satisfied as the many that have gone before you.

Anyway, here's some more Factual and complete information regarding the topic at hand.

Cross posted form the UK Forum.

Update from C2 wrote:UPDATE FROM C2:

The few cases of fatigue cracks that we are aware of to date have started at the small notch in the box frame at the end of the bend under the foot stretcher. This notch was necessary to prevent the metal from tearing when the box frame was being bent into shape. Our pre-production testing of this part showed that we had adequate strength to avoid a fatigue problem. In hindsight this testing was not quite enough since at least in certain loading situations the frame has not been strong enough.
When we first became aware of a failure we realized we had to devise a better test that could duplicate this fatigue crack we were seeing in a relatively short time. In order to get results quickly we had to both speed up the cycle rate and use a very heavy load. We now have the test, which consists of a rapidly alternating load of 600 lbs (275kg) on the rail near the foot stretcher. With this new test we could start seeing a fatigue crack somewhere between 1 and 4 hours. Fatigue is a fairly random process so each part will be different.

Once we were able to duplicate a fatigue crack, we then needed to test possible solutions. Ideally, the solution needed to be applicable to both new production rowers as well as rowers that were already shipped. And for the units already shipped, the reinforcement had to be easily installed by the customer. After a number of dead ends, we now have a design that exceeds the criteria. We are now able to install the reinforcement on a box frame that has developed 2cm cracks and have it go 60 hours with the 600lb fatigue test without any further cracking. At 60 hours we had to stop the test because the box frame was breaking up in other places where the design is the same as on the 14 year old Model C which we have never seen fail.

At the time of this writing, we are now using this method of reinforcement on new production rowers. We are also working on phasing in a box frame that does not need this reinforcement. This design is also required to outlast the 600lb/60hr fatigue test.

We also do max load testing on the frame. This consists of loading the rower on the rail near the foot stretcher with as much load as we can until something fails. The results may come as a surprise to some people longing for the “sturdy old Model C.” The Model C failed at 700lbs. The mode of failure was the monorail hanger bolts plowing their way through the rail. The Model D and E shipped between Aug 06 and April 07 failed at 1000lbs. The mode of failure was buckling along the top edge of the box frame between the foot stretchers. Note that the failure is not at the notch where we had seen the fatigue cracks. The D and E monorail connection was redesigned from the C to get the additional strength. The Model D and E with the reinforcement installed does not fail at 1800lbs. Enough said.

The last part of this process is how to roll it out to customers. To tell you the truth, the cheapest and easiest way would be to quietly eliminate the possibility on new units, do nothing about the shipped units, and just replace the few that fail in the field under warranty. This would be a viable possibility since this type of failure does not involve physical danger. In fact, most of the rowers that might eventually fail would likely fail beyond the 5 year frame warranty. The problem with this solution is that it could damage our reputation and it does not agree with our company mission. The applicable part of the mission reads: “To design, sell, and service unique products of high quality and value for the benefit of the Concept2 community including customers, employees, families, suppliers, and the local community.”

So we decided the best thing to do was to be proactive and eliminate the possibility of this problem occurring by offering a free reinforcing kit to all customers with affected rowers. We consulted a PR expert who said we would be lucky to get 5% of customers to install the fix. We are hoping we can get 20 times that rate.

Dick and Peter Dreissigacker, Concept2 founders
Erg on,
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Postby neilgunton » May 3rd, 2007, 6:37 pm

Paul, thanks for the update. Sounds more promising.

I just received my new Model D. There appears to be no reinforcement plate installed (at least, not anything like the one in the pics Concept2 have supplied). The serial number starts "042507", which is after the period they specify as being affected by the problem. So I'm not sure if this unit has the "new" design or not, given the statement in your message that "we are now using this method of reinforcement on new production rowers" - that makes it sound like the new machines will still have the reinforcement plate, for the time being, until they roll out the new design that doesn't need it... I'll call them tomorrow to try to clarify what the case is with my machine.

/Neil
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Postby PaulS » May 3rd, 2007, 6:41 pm

neilgunton wrote:Paul, thanks for the update. Sounds more promising.

I just received my new Model D. There appears to be no reinforcement plate installed (at least, not anything like the one in the pics Concept2 have supplied). The serial number starts "042507", which is after the period they specify as being affected by the problem. So I'm not sure if this unit has the "new" design or not, given the statement in your message that "we are now using this method of reinforcement on new production rowers" - that makes it sound like the new machines will still have the reinforcement plate, for the time being, until they roll out the new design that doesn't need it... I'll call them tomorrow to try to clarify what the case is with my machine.

/Neil


Nope, apparently some of the newly designed box frames are already being shipped and another fellow "mpukita" who received his machine today also confrmed with c2billp that that is what he received. Perhaps saving you a phone call.

Welcome to the fray!

mpukita wrote:I had a nice note from Bill Patton at C2 after he saw my post about having a new machine (it arrived yesterday) but no visible signs of the thin plates added to fix the problem. He said:

Mike:

[OK, I am Mark, but what the heck, he's probably trolling the boards like madman!]

I read your recent post on the UK forum and wanted to reply to you directly - we've just posted a more thorough recap of the situation in the form of a letter from Peter and Dick Dreissigacker from the main notice page:

http://www.concept2.com/us/support/rowe ... iption.asp

To quote from this letter:

"At the time of this writing, we are now using this method of reinforcement on new production rowers. We are also working on phasing in a box frame that does not need this reinforcement. This design is also required to outlast the 600lb/60hr fatigue test."

Your box arm was one of "phased in" units that did not need the plates.

In short you are good to go.

Regards
Bill Patton


So I've got the new box frame. Will have to watch it to assure it's a good fix.
Erg on,
Paul Smith
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patch kit

Postby baguaman » May 3rd, 2007, 6:46 pm

c2bill,
For what it is worth thanks for the info i have sent for my kit and have
every confidence that the kit will fill the bill just fine,just as i said i am
sure that C2 will and has handled all well. again thanks for the heads
up about the issue.
new to rowing,and looking forward to the work.
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Postby neilgunton » May 3rd, 2007, 6:47 pm

Paul: Yes, I just hopped over to the UK forums and saw that letter. I agree, it looks like I have one of the newer designs. If anyone is interested, I can try to take a pic of it for comparison...

/Neil
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Postby bholland8 » May 3rd, 2007, 6:48 pm

Just wanted to post my two cents as well...

While I am not "thrilled" that my brand new Model D is affected by this problem, I am happy with C2's solution. I researched this company thoroughly before making my purchase and I am very impressed with their reputation!

I have no patience for having to ship items back for repair and having down time. I don't think that is an acceptable solution. I also don't feel that this problem warrants full replacement unless the machine has already lost it's structural integrity and has started cracking (mine has not). C2 has come up with a fix that will make my current rower as strong as new rowers, "if not stronger". That is all that I expect. They found a problem and they are correcting it.

I don't know how many of you purchased your C2 with the intent of re-selling in the near future... I purchased mine with the intent of wearing the hell out of it before I ever think of re-selling. Judging by the life of all previous models... it'll be a while before I need a new model. At that point... I'm sure I'll still be able to sell mine when I upgrade without a problem (just as I've seen many model A's sell for good money).

If there is a problem discovered down the road, I'm sure that Concept 2 will make sure it is rectified. In this day and age of "sue happy" people... I'm glad to see that the U.S. forums aren't jumping on the bandwagon and are, instead, getting all the information and making informed judgements. No cool-aid drinking in that.

Brittany
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Postby neilgunton » May 3rd, 2007, 7:07 pm

I took a few pics of the new machine, which appears to be the new design. These are all views of the area which appears to be affected, i.e. the end of the box frame which the fan is attached to, specifically the end with the foot rests. Please forgive my crappy photography, I tried to just get a few good views so people could see the shape of things in there. I'd be interested to compare it with the old design (which needs the reinforcements)...

http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3731.jpg
http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3732.jpg
http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3733.jpg
http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3734.jpg

/Neil
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Re: Web site

Postby PaulS » May 4th, 2007, 7:39 am

John Rupp wrote:
PaulS wrote:still have an example of each one except the Model D (just never got very attached to that one for some reason


Hi Paul,

Thanks for your comments. May I ask what you didn't like as much about the model D as compared to the others, and do you like the model E better? Is the model E more stable with less shimmy? Details would be helpful as I might consider going that route too.

Thanks and all the best,

John


Hi John,

I think it was probably the Robins egg blue color scheme for the most part. :wink:

I do like the color scheme on the E better, though it would be difficult to quantify if there is any additional stability or less shimmy. The additional height is not noticable when actually rowing, but it does make a difference when getting onboard, especially when the Erg is on slides, as there is an additional 2" of height being added to the seat above the floor. I've somewhat dealt with that issue by having some seats made that are only about 1/2" thick and are also more like the seats we use in a boat.

A slight irritation with the E is the requirement for wider feet, which makes it necessary to remove the slides completely if I want to go with the grounded Erg for a workout. The back foot will not fit down between the railings as the other models would. It only misses slightly, but solving the problem with a hacksaw may not be prudent due to the additional height and stability requirement.
Erg on,
Paul Smith
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Postby PaulS » May 4th, 2007, 7:43 am

neilgunton wrote:I took a few pics of the new machine, which appears to be the new design. These are all views of the area which appears to be affected, i.e. the end of the box frame which the fan is attached to, specifically the end with the foot rests. Please forgive my crappy photography, I tried to just get a few good views so people could see the shape of things in there. I'd be interested to compare it with the old design (which needs the reinforcements)...

http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3731.jpg
http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3732.jpg
http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3733.jpg
http://www.neilgunton.com/public/img_3734.jpg

/Neil


Geat pictures, it looks like they came up with a bending process that simply didn't require the same cut-out.

Now comes the hard part, putting the gear to work. But it's the fun part too. :wink:
Erg on,
Paul Smith
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Postby dmtattny » May 18th, 2007, 9:05 pm

Just got my reinforcement kit, which even includes the Phillips head screwdriver and the box end wrench needed for assembly. How over the top is that? Given that level of attention to the customer experience, I'm not too worried about the reinforcement kit rectifying the problem.
M 47, 5'10", 84 kg
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Postby flan48 » May 19th, 2007, 3:18 pm

Received my kit yesterday afternoon and installed it this morning.
It is a basically easy process which took me around 45 minutes from start to finish - instructions are very easy to follow with very helpful pictures as well.

From my perspective, if the erg had arrived with this "fix" in place I would not have known the difference. In my opinion, C2 gets kudos for its handling of this "situation."

Best regards and have a good week-end.
Barry
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Exercise for life!
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