Now, I am one of those guys that will complain about people driving to the gym to ride a stationary bike. Likewise, I would always recommend a brisk walk around the neighborhood over an electric treadmill. Funny, treadmills used to be a power source to mill grain or something. Now they require electricity so people use power to get a workout. Maybe there is a compelling reason why these things exist like rehabilitation, stress tests, clinical research, etc. But, generally, I’m not too fond of them as a tool for exercise.
Okay, well let’s forget about the value of a treadmill as an exercise device for a moment and focus on what might be salvaged from this behemoth to serve a more practical exercise tool… the bicycle. The treadmill was shot. But I remembered that my friend, colleague and Ironweed retailer, Stevie Goetzelman had once mentioned how someone he knew had used the tread off such a treadmill to make mud flaps for bikes.
I let it sit on the curb for a couple of weeks, just to make certain that no one wanted this broken heap. When I figured it was destined for the landfill, I went down and removed the tread, rolled it up and brought it down to my shop.
This weekend, my wife needed to replace the tube in the back tire on her daily commuter bike- a 1972 Atala. While we had the wheel off, I decided to add mud flaps to her old Zefal fenders. A sharp knife and a couple of rivets later, here are a few pictures of the final product. I still think electric treadmills are goofy, but they do have some value as salvage. I now have enough mud flap material to last for a couple of generations!
Maybe someone could combine the treadmill with the bicycle. Wait... it's already been done!