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Old 08-15-2007, 06:16 PM   #1
Jerry Hill
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Anyone have a do it yourself guide to fractional plates?

I have heard about using washers, glue and magnets...


In Strength,
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Old 08-15-2007, 06:38 PM   #2
Roger Smith
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some short pieces of chain work fine.
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Old 08-15-2007, 08:40 PM   #3
Peter Dell'Orto
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I'd like to see a guide too. I usually use extra collars, I've used magnets, I've used wrist and ankle strap-on weights...For a while I had a pair of rigs of 4oz of fishing weights on monofiliment as a half-point increment but then I needed them for fishing so I had to de-rig that setup.

I've considered purchasing a real fractional set. Not cheap, but once purchased they'd be pretty convenient.
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Old 08-16-2007, 07:33 PM   #4
Jerry Hill
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Searched around and Iron Woody sell them for cheap...

I bought 2 sets, will report back with feedback.

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Old 08-16-2007, 09:36 PM   #5
Eric Stewart
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I picked some 1-7/8" Plain Finish USS Flat Washers.

They are just a bit heavy at 0.5633 lbs. each.

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Old 08-17-2007, 05:33 AM   #6
Tim Donahey
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DIY Fractional Plates (WFS):
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Old 08-17-2007, 05:46 AM   #7
Roark Marsh
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Great Link. Thanks!
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Old 08-17-2007, 05:50 AM   #8
Jay Cohen
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The leader in unique hand made strength equipment.
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Old 08-17-2007, 10:03 AM   #9
Rick Frazier
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Seems I've been beat to the punch by several of you but I'll post anyway, so sorry for the repeat links. Here are a few resources for fractional plates, both fully finished commercial models as well as DIY stuff. All links w/f/s.

1. PDA fractionals. The home of the original fractional plates. They have a wide variety of plates in size (olympic or standard), weight (lowest at 1/16th lbs) and measure (pounds/imperial or kilos/metric). They also offer magnetic fractionals for dumbbells/kettlebells as well as "record" fractionals that are +-0.0 in weight. You can buy various sets or individual plates. Due to the variety and/or accuracy, they are the most expensive of fractionals out there. tegory=Plates

2. Iron Woody fractionals. Their logo says it all, "Fractionals at a fraction of the price!" Comes in sets with pairs of 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 and 1 lbs. They have olympic size, standard size, and 2nds, which are unpainted (others are color coded) and have some sort of manufacture flaw but are still useable. Considerable less expensive than PDA, but less variety to choose from.

3. Platemate fractionals. Magnetic fractionals that come in two configurations, donut (round) and hex. These have the largest incremental jumps of commercial fractions; 5/8, 1 1/4, 1 7/8, and 2 1/2 lbs increments per plates. Web site doesn't list prices but has a store locator for your state or country.

Those are the "big three" as far as commercial fractionals go. Some DIY ideas (all being posted on CF board at sometime in the past) include:

4. Baseball bat donuts. Posted on Apr 05, 2007 by Nathan Davey. Shows that baseball bat donuts slide nicely over an olympic bar and come in weights of 12, 16, 20 and 28 oz. For easy math that is 1.5, 2, 2.5, and 3 lbs incremental jumps per pair. Prices vary but seem to average about $6.00 per weight. Finding bat weights of all those increments online can be a pain, so best bet might be a sporting goods store in the local area.

5. Chains and spring clips. Posted on Apr 24, 2007 by Chris Cline and again today in this thread by Tim Donahey. Uses 5/16" zinc chain and small spring clips (think cheap carabiner) to get fractional weight increments in 0.625 ounces per "plate". Following his instructions you get increments (in pairs) of 1.25, 2.5, 3.75 and 5 lbs.

6. Flat metal washers. Posted today by Eric Steward. Large metal washers with an inside diameter of 2" allow to slide onto olympic bar. Roughly weigh .56 lbs, so a pair will ring in at 1lbs 2 oz, +- manufacture margins. At $1.62 each, you could have 4 pairs for $13, covering you from 1-4 lbs.

So least expensive would probably be #6 with 1 lbs increments and most expensive would be #1 with 2 oz increments (0.125 lbs). Hope that helps give a decent overview of what is out there and helps make searching a little easier.
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Old 08-17-2007, 08:08 PM   #10
Charles Bennington
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Thanks everybody! Great stuff.
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