One of the jobs I had in my early years was as a steel fabrication welder, although after manufacturing patio railings for a long drawn out three months, I soon realized I could earn a better income, while working in an industry I thrived on, by manufacturing home gym equipment. — I built my first leg extension bench at a friends service station using his welder and purchased my own welder from the sale of that bench, and I was on my way.
About 10 years later I established my first fitness centre at Bald Hills, and set up a small steel fabrication workshop to build the equipment I needed in that gym, and also to create a production line to manufacture the most popular item I had been selling, which was the bench press leg extension bench. This is a photo of one of those benches and some, I made with a sit up board at the back, with 3 different height bars, as you will see in the “7 station Home Gym Machine” down further: –
The following photo is of a special jig I made in order to place all the individual steel pieces that made up this bench above, all together in their right position, so all I had to do was tack weld some of the pieces together, then turn the jig so I could tack weld the others. Once they were all tacked, the jig was made so I could turn the bench to any angle, horizontal or vertical, to reach every joint to weld them fully, without bending down or having to twist myself into uncomfortable positions. The black frame is the gig, and the blue pieces of steel are individual pieces that made up the bench: –
This jig allowed me
to weld a bench, paint
it, and upholster it
in 80 minutes.
Below are photos of several other “Home Gym Equipment” items I manufactured and sold from a sporting goods display room, and further down are photos of “Commercial Gym Equipment” I manufactured and sold from orders obtained from other gym owners viewing the equipment in my gym. This is a photo of my sporting good display room in its early stage with no front glass doors to allow people to see the equipment without going inside. The front doors came later: –
The photo below is of the small farm cottage on the property before I renovated it to use as an office and home gym display area and before the car park and fence were added: –
I Have Always Tried To Make My Businesses Unique To Stand Out From The Rest.
Whilst most of the time, I took care of the welding, spray painting and upholstering myself, I did so mainly because I enjoyed trying to design more effective and more unique machines. For time management reasons, I employed one person to cut the individual steel pieces from measurement cards displayed on the workshop walls and then place them in bins under the workshop benches ready for production: –
Above: – Adjustable
Bench Press – Incline
Above: – Adjustable
Bench Press – Incline
Bench with adjustable
This next machine is a “7 Station Home Gym Machine” for bench press, leg extensions, leg curls, lat pulldowns, seated rowing, sit ups, and triceps dips, which I designed and manufactured in my workshop: –
I made the weight rack on this cable machine to run on two wheels, on an angle to maintain strength but keep production costs down, compared with the usual twin bar slide rails: –
Commercial Gym Equipment Manufacture: –
I also designed and manufactured a line of “Commercial Gym Equipment” for professional fitness centres and gymnasiums.
The first machine I wish to show, is a very unique leg press machine. As my gyms were always mixed with men and women training together, with some of the men using very heavy weights on the leg press exercise, women often had to ask me to unload these heavy weights after men had been using them and left the weights on the machine.
This prompted me to come up with a new leg press machine design that would allow women to simply roll the heavy 20 kilogram discs out of the moving leg press rack, by pushing on them with their feet, which made them roll into the stationary rack at the front of the machine, instead of having to find somebody to unload for them. This made the machine very safe to unload without assistance, and as I made a pair of them that bolted together, couples could do the leg press exercise together if they wanted to: –
This is a view from the seat, showing 2 choices of feet positioning and the 20 kilogram discs which could be pushed out by foot: –
This is a side view of the both racks and the seat behind them: –
Even though this new design in leg press machines was popular, I was still asked to manufacture the usual “Angle Slide Leg Press Machine” to supply to commercial gyms, mainly throughout Brisbane. Here is one being manufactured in my Maroochydore workshop: –
This is a photo of that machine finished and delivered to “Physiques Gym and Aerobics Centre” in Redcliffe, Brisbane: –
This next photo is of an unfinished “Lat Pull Bench” for upright seated rowing: –
This is that machine finished and delivered to “Physiques Gym and Aerobics Centre” in Redcliffe: –
— NB/221117 —