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  1. #1
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    GYM Equipment Refurb / Repaint Thread

    I thought it would be cool to have a dedicated thread for equipment restoration.


    I got rid of a monstrous smith machine that I really only used for calf raises anymore and lucked into a Bodymasters standing calf for cheap. It was really nasty and had quite a bit of surface rust.





    I remember my wife saying, "You actually PAID something for that rustbucket??? You got ripped off." lol
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  2. #2
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    I went through a whole box of sandpaper removing 3 layers of paint. I wish I had a sandblaster! I repainted with Rustoleum black hammer for the frame and rosemary for the weight stack. I had to replace the pillow blocks since they were toast. There are loads of these on eBay for cheap.







    Down the road I may modify the machine to use olympic plates turn it into a squat/calf, and use the 400 lb stack on some other equipment. I'll have to make a larger foot platform.
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  3. #3
    Home Gym Enthusiast Vmango's Avatar
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    Wow. Excellent job, skid. Also good idea for a thread - I'll be lurking here a lot. It's interesting though, because at least in Canada, the major deals come with equipment that does need a little TLC. Often, just a little sanding, oiling, cleaning or painting can bring a piece completely back and the saving are often huge.
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  4. #4
    Registered User twodog's Avatar
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    Great post Skid. I, too, seem to get my best deals on equipment that needs more than a little TLC. I'll only buy it in that condition if I want to keep it, because doing extensive work on stuff to flip isn't worth it to me. I'll keep an eye on this thread, as well as I hope to eventually post also.

    Beautiful job on the calf machine, and I need to rep but all I get is "You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Skidmarx again.", so it'll have to be on the rebound.
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  5. #5
    Dork of York Northernmoris's Avatar
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    I'm on spread also. That looks awesome. Nice job, especially the color scheme.
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  6. #6
    Home gym 'til I die. ProtienandIron's Avatar
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    Great thread Skid, refurbs are happening all over this section, its great to have a place to see what people are up to and the tecniques they are using to put new life into old/vintage gear. That BM machine rules.
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  7. #7
    Bootless Errand ironwill2008's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ProtienandIron View Post
    Great thread Skid, refurbs are happening all over this section, its great to have a place to see what people are up to and the tecniques they are using to put new life into old/vintage gear. That BM machine rules.
    co-signed.


    Great job on the resto, Skid.



    I love all that old Body Masters stuff. Cut my bodybuilding teeth on their equipment back in the day.
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  8. #8
    Registered User rlundregan's Avatar
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    Looks great. I never thought to paint a weight stack any colorother thanblack--that Rosemary really makes it look sharp! Reps on spread!
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  9. #9
    The Ultimate Gym HealthNutMD's Avatar
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    Awesome job... looks better than the original finish.
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  10. #10
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    Spent some time on my new curl bars yesterday. I used a concrete cleaner that has phosphoric acid. Not only did it take out the rust, it took off the black oxide coating(what was left of it). Some here like the cruddy look, but I don't like getting my hands and clothes dirty just working out

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  11. #11
    Home gym 'til I die. ProtienandIron's Avatar
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    Wow, that did the job well!! Those look as good as the day they were made.
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  12. #12
    RL Erik 'Iwhspr Fe comes' matrix563's Avatar
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    what part is the pillow block?
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  13. #13
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by matrix563 View Post
    what part is the pillow block?

    Huh?

    You talking about the brass sleeves? They have white grease on them in the pics, forgot to wipe it off.
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  14. #14
    RL Erik 'Iwhspr Fe comes' matrix563's Avatar
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    i'm talking about the part you said was the pillow blocks . are those the guide rods?
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  15. #15
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    Oh you are talking about the calf machine. They are the greenish colored bearings on the top corners of the unit. They hold the swing arm

    they look like this
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  16. #16
    RL Erik 'Iwhspr Fe comes' matrix563's Avatar
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    Oh ok there are lots of those on my magnum perfect squat
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  17. #17
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    I made some mods and repainted my life fitness 0-90 bench last weekend.

    I got rid of the plastic end caps and welded in some pieces of angle on the back cross-piece. Also, I removed the front cross-piece and made a replacement out of angle that I won't trip over, particularly while backing up with dumbbells. lol




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  18. #18
    Registered User twodog's Avatar
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    Looks great Skid, I really like the cut way angle to get rid of a tripping hazard as well as angle/tab end caps. My stuff is slowly becoming white, due to the fact that it's color that I've been picking up lately and I don't have the energy,or care at the moment, to repaint my rack. I love black metal 'cause it reminds me of the old skool equipment that I used to workout on.
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  19. #19
    Registered User irongrandpa's Avatar
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    mods look good.i always look forward to seeing stuff you fabricate. i've got a 14" chop saw & angle grinder, starting to work in this direction myself. next is learning to weld. thanks for advice you and others post here.
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  20. #20
    Home gym 'til I die. ProtienandIron's Avatar
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    Nice refurb skid, that bench was crying out to be black. The mods you've done look make it look really streamlined.
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  21. #21
    Registered User rlundregan's Avatar
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    I agree--it looks great. I have the same fear about tripping over the front cross piece on my Body Solid bench. It hasn't happened yet, but eventually, I'm sure it will!
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  22. #22
    Registered User hulked's Avatar
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    hey Skidmarx, I was reading all refinishing threads and came across this one. The bar makeover is the best. It looks brand new...!!! Repped.
    I read ur best 3 step method u posted - sanding(med/heavy), cleaning and painting. I wanted to try my hand at refinishing/painting and this is my firs time. so thought of starting with a smaller item - couple of vintage collars. They are in a brownish color. not too much rust. can I follow the above process for collars too? I am planning to hand sand them, immerse them in dawn, dry, wipe off and paint them with hammer tone. Let me know if this is not advisable for collars. Also, any color suggestions...Asking since I really liked the rosemary for the weight blocks... I seem to like the brownish vintage feel of the collars... is there a specific color that would be close ?
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  23. #23
    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    I don't see why it wouldn't work for those or any other rusty steel. It didn't affect the brass inserts on my bars negatively either.

    My fav colors are dark bronze and rosemary. I think they have a brownish color now, I'm not sure.
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    The Ultimate Gym HealthNutMD's Avatar
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    I am thinking of picking up a few nautilus plate loaded pieces that I was hoping to have refurbished. I build speakers and good with woodworking, but not really experienced with powder coating or high quality refurbishing. I was wondering if there was a place in the San Jose/San Fransicso area that might do that if I took the pieces to them. I mean I could ship them to a place, but that is like dropping 800-900 dollars in shipping each way. I wonder how I could locate a place locally that could refurb my equipment...
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    Workin' Stabilizers Skidmarx's Avatar
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    I'd be surprised if there wasn't a powdercoating shop nearby you can go to. I found a few in my town that do sandblasting, welding, and powdercoating, like these guys :

    http://powdercoatingjacksonville.com/
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    RL Erik 'Iwhspr Fe comes' matrix563's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Skidmarx View Post
    I'd be surprised if there wasn't a powdercoating shop nearby you can go to. I found a few in my town that do sandblasting, welding, and powdercoating, like these guys :

    http://powdercoatingjacksonville.com/
    i wonder how much these places charge. i have 4 small pieces i want to paint a different color. they would all fit in my car.

    if someone could video tape the process of how they do the equipment, light sanding, how much, how much and how to spray paint it, etc, it would be useful. i would do so but i haven't done it before thus i am in need of a guide too lol
    Last edited by matrix563; 10-31-2012 at 07:34 PM.
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    Originally Posted by HealthNutMD View Post
    I am thinking of picking up a few nautilus plate loaded pieces that I was hoping to have refurbished. I build speakers and good with woodworking, but not really experienced with powder coating or high quality refurbishing. I was wondering if there was a place in the San Jose/San Fransicso area that might do that if I took the pieces to them. I mean I could ship them to a place, but that is like dropping 800-900 dollars in shipping each way. I wonder how I could locate a place locally that could refurb my equipment...
    Your best bet would be to look for a reputable custom motorcycle shop.. If they don't do it inhouse, I can guarantee you that they know a good powdercoater that they send their work to. That's how I found an excellent local guy.. then he moved.
    Custom or restoration car shops are worth a try also but I've found that the motorcycle guys demand higher quality finishes and therefore know the best finishers.
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    I used a shop in Edmonton. They were extremely reasonable in price. Large production type facility that specializes in motorcycle, ATV, and snowmobile parts. They blasted and powder coated my Nautilus compound bicep (pics on page 104 or 105 of the cost no object gym equipment thread) for about $300.00 including the weight stack. With new padding from www dot fullcirclepadding dot com (awesome place to deal with, and they have lots of new pads ready to ship) the machine looks brand new, and functions brand new too. I've completely refurbished several peices that I bought at auctions and such that weren't the right colour for my gym, including Hammer Strength 1st generation dip, Hammer Strength row, Hammer Strength low row, Nautilus OME, and lastly my Nautilus compound bicep. I have the units blasted, powder coated, replace the fasteners, decals, grips, and padding. I had done the Hammer stuff as a group. Picked them up at auction I beleive for no more than $220.00 each. Powder coating cost me at the time $1700.00 (more specialized shop, way more expense than the new place I'm using, not used to doing interesting stuff like this) but even then I ended up with 3 "new" peices for the price of 1. None of my gym members could tell they were used. It's been about 3 years now, and they look great.

    I can't stress enough to people who buy or refurbish used equipment, selectorized guide rods need to be spottless and plate bushings need to be clean, no gunk build up. Then and only then do you LIGHTLY coat the guide rods with a thin film lubricant. So many people on other forums have sticky old machines and everyones answer is either your rods are bent or you need more oil. I've got several Nautilus 1st gen peices in my gym. Some refurbished, some not. Either way when I bring them in they get a major cleaning to remove all the old grease and sludge built up over the last 3-4 decades.
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    I spent my Saturday fixing up a TDS calf machine I got for $30.



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    dude where do you live. i will seriously pay you to paint the few things i have that i want painted
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