The Hudson EL3300 Elliptical Review — Cheap price, cheap parts, poorly made

The Treadmill Sensei has recovered from his bout with pneumonia and is back in the treadmill and elliptical review game. Normally the DOJO is closed on Sundays but I came in today to catch up on a little work and to see what kind of mess Hikaru and the younger Senseis have left the place in. Surprisingly, they didn’t burn it to the ground while I was gone.

Here are the DOJO over 20+ years we’ve worked on every type and brand of machine out there — Precor, Life Fitness, Proform, Weslo, Image, Horizon, Star Trac, Matrix, Landice, Cybex…you name it and we’ve done it. We even get in the odd Bremshey units which are sold mainly overseas. The point of telling you that is to say I’m used to coming in to the DOJO to find some strange equipment sitting in the main repair bay for me to check out.

That happened to me again this morning when I slid the main door open and saw a Hudson EL3300 Elliptical sitting up on one of the work stations.

At first I was just mildly interested in the Hudson EL3300 because they are fairly common budget ellipticals. They sell for around $550 or so. The thing that piqued my curiosity was the fact the Hudson EL3300 was sitting in one of our remanufacturing bays. Since remanufacturing is really only done on higher end units that can hold up to the process (and are worth the time and added expense of the process), seeing a low end, cheaply made machine sitting there waiting for one of the techs to go and rebuild was something a bit out of the ordinary. So I trotted over to check out the work order for this mysterious Hudson EL330 elliptical.

What I saw in the work out made me laugh for a good 5 minutes straight. Junior Sensei Hikaru had been given this Hudson EL3300 by someone in his family and he was planning to remanufacture the elliptical to resell on eBay. Poor deluded Hikaru. This is easily one of the worst ideas he’s had.

The Hudson EL3300 Elliptical is made by Hudson Fitness out of New Jersey. They’re actually a partner company to the people who make the Cateye equipment. You’d think them being teamed with Cateye would insure they produced high quality equipment. Unfortunately, that’s not the case.

The EL3300 elliptical is a very poorly constructed piece of equipment that will work poorly for any sort of heavy duty work out — truth be told, they’ll break down more often than not from anything beyond a very light workout by a very light person. There is a lot of plastic in these things and the upright bars are attached to the machine in a very unsturdy manner.

One of the worst parts of this machine are the pedals. The Hudson EL3300 has a very wide spacing between its pedals. The pedas are also static and attached to the lower elliptical bars on the EL3300 elliptical. Add that to the fact the pedals are at an almost parallel angle to the floor and you’ll find yourself with a very awkward, uncomfortable feeling when you work out.

The Hudson EL3300 was very poorly engineered and the use of cheap parts doesn’t help the situation any. Now, it does come with a heart rate control program which is very nice, it’s just not enough to save the EL3300 from the scapheap most of these units quickly wind up in. Oh, and for the love of God, do not believe the machine has a maximum weight capacity of 250 pounds. I’m in the 165 pound range and it will creak and groan when I work out on it.

Finally, don’t even get me started on the laughable 1 year warranty or the fact Hudson claims this unit is “light commercial” grade. I’m not sure what they were smoking when that statement was made but they need to share.

Stay far away from the Hudson EL3300 Elliptical. If you’re looking for something worthwhile at this price point, check out the Horizon EX55 instead. It costs about $40 more but you’ll have yourself an elliptical that will last and hold up to your work out.

For being bad, bad, bad, the Treadmill Sensei gives the Hudson EL3300 Elliptical 1 out of 5 Golden Buddahs.

1 gold buddah out of 5 for the Hudson EL3300. Run away! Run away!

Hudson EL3300 Elliptical Specifications
Stride Length: 18.5″
Levels of Resistance: 8
Heart Rate Monitor: Pulse Grip
Heart Rate Control: Yes
Programs: 6 including Heart Rate Control
Stride: 18.5″
Max Weight Capacity: 250 lbs. (don’t make me laugh!)
Warranty: 1 Year Parts
Weight: 100 lbs

Check out the highly rated Horizon EX55 instead!