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Equipment Outfitting a serious gym. Vendors & suppliers. Devices & equipment

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Old 02-25-2006, 12:01 PM   #1
Rick Williams
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I'm new to Crossfit and am working out at home and trying to put together a decent garage gym. I curently have some DBs, a cheap Olympic 300# weight set (more than enough right now), med ball (ordered), jump rope, and a 1 Pood KB.

I am looking at buying a 1)power rack, 2) GHD 3)Concept II as the big expendiatures, but need to spread these out over several months or longer.

I am currently doing pull ups on a huge beam in the back patio (so big I can only pull up commando style) and dips on the bench. A good Pull up bar is one of most immediate needs - I really need to do the GTG thing and they seem to come up on the WOD fairly often anyway.

I read the Garage Gym CF Journal and saw where the Vulcan Squat rack along with the Towers are the recommended buy. However, I can get a Powertec Power Rack that would allow me to do PUs and Dips along with the regular weight lifting moves for much cheaper than the Vulcan + Towers.

Here are my questions:
1) Does my order of equipment purchase intentions make sense.
2) Does anyone have any experience with the Powertec rack? Is it a good quality rack?
3) Can you kip on a rack or will it be unstable? Are regular PU bars better in some way to a chin bar on a full rack? BW 185#s, 5"10".
4) Can you do all the Olypmic lifts inside a rack or would some need to be in the open? Just thinking protection the spotter offers here.
5) Do those with the Vulcan set up think it is worth the money?

Forgive me if some of these questions seem a little elementary, but I am pretty new to most of the lifting. Thanks in advance for any advice - this message board has proven extremely helpful!

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Old 02-25-2006, 12:11 PM   #2
Bret Parkhill
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Altoona  Iowa
Posts: 115

I've seen the Powertec rack in person and shook it. It wasn't very sturdy. I'm sure it's fine for holding the weights but kipping pullups might be iffy. For myself, I'm thinking of racks in the $350-500 price range. I found one but the pullup bar was knurled and I think that would chew my hands up too much.

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Old 02-25-2006, 02:51 PM   #3
Ryan Atkins
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Location: Racine  WI
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Hi Rick,

A quick google search indicated that the power rack you're looking at goes for about $390. Is this right? You could save yourself some cash/accelerate your home gym progress by doing some relatively easy home projects:

1. The pull-up bar in this video ( was made for less than $60 IIRC. Materials included 1.5" pipe, a 2x4 and some wood screws.

2. Homemade rings ( go for around $20 IIRC.

So far this gives you the pull-up and dip options without taking up hardly any space. Take the $310 you saved from not buying the power rack and get 2 4'x6' 3/4" stall mats (about $40 each) at the nearest Farm & Fleet or equivalent. The remaining $230 can be used to start building your bumper plate collection (looks like you can get a pair of 10s, 25s, and 35s for about $296 from Gill, BEFORE the CrossFit discount and shipping).

IMO, the power rack simply isn't worth it - takes up too much floor space, it will rock during kipping pull-ups (unless weighted down) and IS NOT a cool place to be O-lifting in.

The squat stands are OK, but aren't a high priority item compared to the other stuff. They can be homemade (, but if you want to save up for the real ones, you can always practice your deadlifts, Steinborn squats, squat cleans, etc. until you get them.

Almost forgot - Welcome to CrossFit.

Hope this helps,

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Old 02-25-2006, 04:08 PM   #4
Rick Williams
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Thanks for your perspective on the sturdiness factor - that's exactly what I couldn't see by looking at a pic on the net.


Thanks for the links and the economy suggestions. Wil have to rethink some of my priorities as far as equipment goes.

Thanks, Rick
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Old 02-25-2006, 07:29 PM   #5
Chris Goodrich
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Puyallup  WA
Posts: 129
If you're working with 300#, you could probably get away with using a pair of saw-horses instead of the IM spotting stands. Dan John talks about this in his book. Chris
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