Due to the complicated nature of the Coronavirus, many industries and businesses have suffered a great deal of financial hardships. Gratz was no exception, and in the beginning of the pandemic, non-essential businesses were forced to shut down their doors by the order of the state Governor for several months. The pause created a significant interruption in our production schedule, causing Gratz to make the difficult choice of significantly extending our lead times on all our apparatuses. We made this decision because we could never sacrifice the quality of our craftsmanship for a short cut. Yet, despite the long production time, our customers still choose our equipment over other manufacturers.


We are beholden to the trust our customers have in our equipment, and we hope that by giving you a glimpse on the behind-the-scenes look at our factory, it will ease any concerns about your choice to go with us- you're choosing the best equipment that is committed to protecting Joseph Pilates vision!



SEAMSTRESS

Right on this table with that thread and that sewing machine is where our very talented seamstresses sew your upholstery. The product we use is a synthetic vinyl developed in America by a company called Naugahyde. No matter what color you pick, the Gratz team sits down and machine sews your chosen color to your made to order apparatus. In addition to being easy to clean, the fabric we use  have been proven to be stain-resistant, durable, fire retardant and antimicrobial. It is synthetic leather that is incredibly durable and created to be long-lasting. Our team hand cuts the foam and straps.


The Factory is buzzing with excitement as we work diligently to catch up and get your custom orders out to you as expeditiously as possible. We appreciate your patience and continued support. Gratz is Where Art Meets Science


SEAMSTRESS

Right on this table with that thread and that sewing machine is where our very talented seamstresses sew your upholstery. The product we use is a synthetic vinyl developed in America by a company called Naugahyde. No matter what color you pick, the Gratz team sits down and machine sews your chosen color to your made to order apparatus. In addition to being easy to clean, the fabric we use  have been proven to be stain-resistant, durable, fire retardant and antimicrobial. It is synthetic leather that is incredibly durable and created to be long-lasting. Our team hand cuts the foam and straps.


The Factory is buzzing with excitement as we work diligently to catch up and get your custom orders out to you as expeditiously as possible. We appreciate your patience and continued support. Gratz is Where Art Meets Science



Springs, Roll back bars and push through bars

The Push Thru Device has a narrow V for the pad of the foot. It's a nice distribution so that you don't have to figure out where your feet goes. The piece has a Mortis and is projected into the frame. Just by taking this extra step makes the bar incredibly strong.



A spring differs from traditional weights in that as it is stretched from its resting position, it exerts an opposing force approximately proportional to its change in length. In other words, the more you stretch a spring, the more opposing force it responds back. In essence, more force is required to overcome that opposition. Spring resistance varies substantially from manufacturer to manufacturer, so describing the estimated spring tension without a specialized tool is almost impossible.

Gratz does not implement color-coded springs.  We physically calibrate them ourselves by taking an 8 LB weighted object and apply it to the springs to observe its strength. We then take it to the pole station and 'scoop' it down until we get the desired measurement.The difference one feels when using Gratz is how the carriage returns to rest. The carriage is not entirely connected to the stopper, which gives the user an additional challenge of bringing the carriage back to its original position.
 

All made in the USA at our Philadelphia factory. What is your favorite exercise on each of these bars? Please tell us your favorite and why on our Instagram page.



GRINDING

The most important factor in our equipment is the frame to maintain stability. The Reformer frame is made from either attractive solid hardwood or metal frames. Our aluminum frame is made up of 60% post-industrial recycled material.


Aluminum is a versatile, lightweight, durable metal. We use this metal over others because it weighs less by volume and naturally non-corrosive. The aluminum forms an oxide layer that naturally guards against various compounds.



The aluminum extrusion we use to make the reformer is about 24 foot long and has a bull nose: a curved surface that prevents cuts when getting on and off a reformer. We cut it with a double Miter Saw and make them simultaneously at a 45 degree cut and then put them together to breathe life into the reformer.


Pipes on the Cadillac and the Studio Wall Unit are special on the Gratz apparatus. It's very strong- we use schedule 40 galvanized pipes so it has a very thick feel. Galvanizing is a process where liquid Zinc is electrostatically put on the surface to prevent rust. We smooth it out but we don't polish it- we leave a 'tooth' so that when you are working on the equipment you have a good grip and have stability. Once the frames are made, they are welded and chased: a process of grinding and profiling the aluminum. All the craftsman at Gratz have been practicing their skills for many years. It is very important that the welder accurately penetrates the aluminum for maximum strength and safety.


Designer reformer in maple wood

NOTE: these photos were taken before the announcement of the pandemic


ALL IN THE DETAILS:

Gratz Foot Correctors

Foot Correctors are cast of Solid Bronze in a foundry located in Philadelphia. We use a mold that we inherited from Joseph Pilates back in 1938. This durable bronze alloy lasts a long time!



ALL IN THE DETAILS: Toe Exercisers

Please meet James Varughese from the Machine Shop of the Gratz Factory. He is working on Toe Exercisers. James and the rest of the team are working hard and staying safe while custom making the finest Apparatus in the world. Gratz is Where Art meets Science.



Designer reformer in maple wood

ORIGINAL MANUFACTURER OF PILATES APPARATUS

Our company was started by Frank Gratz in New York City in 1928 as a custom fabrication shop producing industrial design prototypes, architectural metal, furniture and sculpture for many of the world's greatest designers.


Our wood working department is organized by father and son duo, Jiang and Jay. The Baby Arm Chair design is based off an original model at Drago's gym in NYC and comes from Joseph Pilates studio. We are committed to maintaining the proportions and integrity of his work. It is all manufactured from scratch.

SOME MORE OF OUR WORKS

SMALL ITEMS AT WORK

AIRPLANE BOARD

FOOT CORRECTOR

HEADBOARD?
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