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Phil Miller 08-05-2009 06:43 PM

Wood vs Steel
I have a pretty good idea for a squat rack, pull up bar and dip station using either wood or steel. Seems that the price of steel square stock and wooden 6x6 post is about the same. I have access to a full welding and machine shop so all that work is free. Which would you prefer? Seems alot of home made stuff is of wood so I was not sure if some just like to make there gear of wood.

Another question, since I do have access to the fabrication equipment and only have to purchase materials what else would you like in a home gym on the cheap? I ask because I am not really sure on what else I should make.

Rolando Santos 08-05-2009 06:52 PM

Re: Wood vs Steel
The main reason home made stuff is wood and not steel is because most people can't fabricate steel for FREE!!! To quote Mark Rippetoe "Squat cages should be made of steel for the same reason cars are not made of wood..." or something like that very funny... If you can have steel for the same price, go with steel.

If you feel up to it I would recommend making a GHD this is the second highest priced piece of equipment many wish they had after the Concept rower but it is complicated if you want to make it adjustable. If you are going to make a custom one that fits just your dimensions I think a capable person could do this as I have seen some made of wood.

Phil Miller 08-05-2009 07:02 PM

Re: Wood vs Steel
K thanks I figured it was a cost thing but you never know. I saw the wooden pull up bar station thread and it had me thinking of what I could do with some square stock, lag bolts and a drill press. Should be able to get a better idea on the over all idea at work and will post it.

Louis H. Poulin II 08-06-2009 11:33 AM

Re: Wood vs Steel
Steel is also expensive. I am a weldor and fabricator and I was going ot make my own power rack. I got a quote from work and the materials alone were gonna cost about 1/2 of what a new power rack would. Then I estimated the amount of time it would take me to fab, drill, and weld it at my hourly wage and I figured out it cost me more to make it myself. Bought my Powertec rack and I'm very happy with it.

Tom Fetter 08-07-2009 09:18 AM

Re: Wood vs Steel
I made a wood cage because I could, a couple of years back.

Renovating a series of 5 houses means that my carpentry skills were more than up to the task, and the various house additions, decks etc. I've added over the years gave me a good idea of what would be structurally sound. The cage I built is significantly over-engineered beyond that, to remove any doubt.

Posts from triple 2X4 construction, mortice-and-tenon joined both to floor and ceiling ... and safety rails from 1" steel will be overkill for some time yet. As the squat weights creep up though, I'm beginning to think about re-designing the J-hooks to spread the load further..

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