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Old 11-03-2007, 03:00 PM   #1
Skylar Cook
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Making Kettlebells

So I'm definitely down for a kettlebell. But not the cost. I like the 'Stonebell' idea at
http://jawbonejournal.blogspot.com/2...stonebell.html

I don't, however, want to attach plates to the bottom of it (it would make it too wide, I think, not to mention that I don't HAVE any plates). How heavy are they without the plates? Anyone made one or have a good guess?

I'm thinking about making one (using a basketball for a mold instead) and putting some lead tire weights into the mold with the cement. I'd probably just bend either some pipe (or rebar, but then I'd need tubing) with a propane torch into shape, but have the ends connected inside the bell- that way I could attach the tire weights to prevent them from sinking. Also thinking about adding some nylon fiber to the mix for more durability.

Thoughts/comments/suggestions?
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Old 11-03-2007, 04:16 PM   #2
Thomas Covington
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Re: Making Kettlebells

Skylar, I have been toying with the idea of making a stoneball using a busted medicine ball basketball for a few months now(been lazy). Using standard concrete the ball would weight 37.6lb + the handle. Please let me know how this turns out if you do go ahead with the project.

A thought on your design - I was planning on bending the ends of the rebar out, instead of in, to provide more 'hold' once the concrete dries.

Last edited by Thomas Covington : 11-03-2007 at 04:21 PM.
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Old 11-03-2007, 04:30 PM   #3
Matt DeMinico
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Re: Making Kettlebells

Wow, not a bad idea. Although I may just opt to fill a ball with concrete and leave that on the outside, that way in case it starts to crack, it's all inside still.
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Old 11-03-2007, 06:17 PM   #4
Thomas Covington
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Re: Making Kettlebells

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt DeMinico View Post
Wow, not a bad idea. Although I may just opt to fill a ball with concrete and leave that on the outside, that way in case it starts to crack, it's all inside still.
It might just make any slip-up, in which the ball meets your shin, a bit more bearable.
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Old 11-03-2007, 07:17 PM   #5
Don King
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Re: Making Kettlebells

Sweeeeet, that's an awesome home brew KB. The cost of KBs has prevented me from purchasing them but I never thought about doing concrete molds.

I would recommend vibrating the concrete once in the mold to remove air pockets. This will help make the concrete stronger, which is a good thing considering how much of a beating these are going to take. A good way to vibrate the concrete is to use a handheld sander. The fiber that Skyler mentioned is definitely a good idea too.

I'll try and take some pics to post. Good luck with the home brew KBs guys.
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Old 11-03-2007, 10:24 PM   #6
Skylar Cook
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Re: Making Kettlebells

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v6...ebellcrude.jpg

There's a crude drawing of the plans I have going in my head. Red would be rebar or whatever handle material (I'm thinking about using some steel pipe- not as cheap, but wouldn't need a cover), the purple square is where the lead weights could be attached (keeping the weight somewhat centered, I'm hoping). Optional rebar stabilizers could be added as radii. I'm also thinking about adding some nylon fiber to increase the durability and some superplasticizer so it'll conform to the mold better. Maybe I won't even need the plasticizer, I'll see how the mix flows without it.

Now that I'm thinking about it, maybe I'll stick with the rebar and just put some PVC (or even metal pipe) over it, then fill the gap between the two with that expanding foam- "Great Stuff" indeed (or hell, more concrete). I think the concrete would adhere better to the rebar than to smoother pipe. I'll just try to match the angle of the elbow joints when I bend the rebar.
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Last edited by Skylar Cook : 11-03-2007 at 10:28 PM.
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Old 11-04-2007, 12:43 AM   #7
Trevor Thompson
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Re: Making Kettlebells

i thought about this and milled it over for a long while and figured you could also add lead weights to the re-bar, or even standard holed weight plates to increase teh weight up to 72lbs+...Just cast the concrete right over it and it will look just like concrete but will have the heft of those weights on the inside
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Old 11-04-2007, 08:15 AM   #8
Skylar Cook
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Re: Making Kettlebells

Yeah, adding plates would definitely work, but they're expensive (comparatively), and I wouldn't want to waste them by casting inside the bell (also, as I mentioned before, I think heavy plates would be wider than the bell, which is already oversized from casting inside a basketball). I was thinking tire weights because you can likely get old ones for free from tire shops. Plus lead is denser, so you could hypothetically get it heavier with less volume.

When you say "add weights to the rebar," are you talking about the rebar on the outside of the bell? Or the inside (what I'm planning on doing)?
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Old 11-04-2007, 09:26 AM   #9
Trevor Thompson
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Re: Making Kettlebells

On the inside. Really you could probably get tire weights at cost, or grab some from play-it-again sports, they have sold weight in my area (for standard plates) at like .49 a pound.
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Old 11-04-2007, 01:17 PM   #10
Skylar Cook
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Re: Making Kettlebells

Alright I need some suggestions for the handle material. So far my thoughts are (as well as possible problems with them):

1. Cover all of the rebar with metal pipe. If the rebar won't fit through the larger pipe elbow joint unbent, then this won't work (no way to get the elbow joints on there). Also, I'd like to fill the area between the two with concrete, but it'd have to be pretty watery to fill in the mold (superplasticizer might solve this).

2. That rubber tube he used on the website. I just don't like the feel or look of it...

3. Wrapping assloads of hockey/athletic tape around the rebar. This would just look like crap... But I could double up the rebar to make it wider & stronger.

I'm also thinking about just covering the top part of the rebar with metal, and wrapping tape around the (semi-)vertical parts that lead into the bell (for padding so the rebar doesn't eat my hands). This would give a nice feel, and solve the problems with covering the entire piece of rebar. Could just epoxy the pipe onto the rebar... This sounds good.

Ideas? Suggestions?
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Last edited by Skylar Cook : 11-04-2007 at 01:19 PM.
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