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

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Old 11-20-2006, 02:20 PM   #1
Sam Michaud
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Well, based on the comments and recommendations in this forum, I decided to buy a set of York training bumpers (SRTBs)to start setting up my own home gym. Any doubts that I might have had about ordering fitness gear online evaporated when I saw York's commitment to their customers during the recent needle bar recall.

Ordering could not have been simpler: a quick e-mail to Allison Foreman, our super York rep, and the bumpers were on the way via UPS. The order arrived about a week after I placed it via UPS, which I considered to be excellent time considering the time taken to be processed through customs (I live in Canada).

Each SRTB came individually shrink wrapped in plastic, in its own box filled with foam "peanuts" to protect them from the best UPS can throw at them. Taking them out of the box, I was struck by what a clean, quality product they were given the few other bumper brands that I had seen locally. They are also much thinner than a few other brands that I have seen which makes loading the bar a lot cleaner and easier.

After quickly unwrapping each bumper (2x10kg, 2x15kg, and 2x20kg), I then carefully inspected each for any damage. While they all looked perfect on first glance, I did find minor imperfections on the edge of one 15kg and one 20kg bumper - more on that in a minute.

Despite the minor imperfections, I gleefully loaded up a pair of 15s on my Pendlay Crossfit bar (thanks again Pierre!) and did exactly what you would expect any newb to do: I picked them up and, with great malice of forethought, dropped them on my mats to watch them bounce. They behaved exactly as expected: landing with a small, controlled, and even bounce - not that I was really expecting anything else, I've just never had the privilege of lifting bumpers before.

Back to the imperfections for a minute. What I noticed was an area on the rim of the two bumpers where the beautifully smooth outside edge of the bumper was marred by a rough area roughly 1/4" in width that spanned about half the circumference on one edge of the 15kg and slightly less on the 20kg. Not having any experience with bumpers, I couldn't tell if I was looking at a normal manufacturing variance or a flaw that would reduce the life of the bumper so I took pictures and sent them back to Allison for advice.

Now, to be perfectly honest, I expected a polite reply back telling me not to fret - that this was indeed just normal. Instead I got a tremendous e-mail of support from Allison basically explaining that York was simply not in the business of shipping flawed products and that the bumpers would be replaced post-haste. Sure enough, less than a week later I had the pleasure of unwrapping two new bumpers that had been delivered to my door at York's expense. No equivocating, no lengthy deliberations, no second guessing... just outstanding customer support.

I've now got about a week of lifting on them and the difference between using these bumpers with the Crossfit bar and the steel plates and generic bars at the local gyms can't be adequately expressed in a simple post. I've lifted (and dropped) the plates dozens of times already and they show absolutely no sign of any hardship - they appear to be very robust and designed to provide years of service. I debated long and hard on whether to invest up front in a decent bar and bumpers or simply start out with the generic 400# set sold locally and I can honestly say that I have no doubt now that I made the right decision.

So, to summarize: a great product at a great price (thanks to the Crossfit discount). But, even more importantly in my estimation, a superb company that stands resolutely behind its products and supports its customers. I will be a repeat customer and plan to buy more York product in the future.

I would highly recommend, without reservation, that anyone looking for great gear at a great price for their own home gym drop Allison an e-mail - she's the best!

Sam
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Old 11-20-2006, 04:08 PM   #2
Pierre Auge
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Sam,
sounds great, and I'm glad you like the bar.
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Old 11-21-2006, 06:45 AM   #3
Owen Graham
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Just curious...what's the CF discount with York?

Thanks!
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Old 11-21-2006, 01:52 PM   #4
Sam Michaud
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30% discount on all York equipment for Crossfitters available by ordering direct from Allison Foreman:

allisonforeman@aol.com

You won't be disappointed.

Sam
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Old 11-21-2006, 06:59 PM   #5
Wes Peart
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Our high school weightroom has york bumpers that have been dropped from overhead and every distance in between THOUSANDS of times from every angle imaginable. They are still in perfect working order and I think they will stay that way for many years.
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Old 11-22-2006, 06:19 AM   #6
Anthony Bainbridge
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We started pricing equipment for an upcoming affiliate and Allison was by far the best rep we dealt with. She was fast, friendly, and extremely detailed in all our conversations. We definitely look forward to doing business with her!
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Old 11-22-2006, 07:03 AM   #7
Owen Graham
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Anyone have the standard price for bumpers from York? Thanks for the info Sam!
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Old 11-22-2006, 01:33 PM   #8
Sam Michaud
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Owen,

PM sent.

Sam
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Old 11-22-2006, 04:41 PM   #9
Sam Michaud
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Re-reading this thread, I am left with the impression that I am guilty of not giving enough credit to the Pendlay Crossfit bar (even though the primary reason for this thread is to give an overview of the York SRTBs).

Although I am no expert on bars, I am very happy with the Crossfit bar and it seems ideally suited to the type of daily use a typical Crossfitter might subject it to in a home gym environment. It is much better than the generic bars common in the local gyms and it is priced right for someone just starting out (like me).

Besides looking great, the bar has a very comfortable knurling pattern straight out of the box, the collars spin freely, and it feels "right" with its 28.5mm grip being imperceptibly larger than the Olympic standard 28mm - certainly the 30mm and 32mm bars that are typically found in the local gyms here are noticeably thicker.

The bar has small concentric rings on the outer sleeves to keep weights from slipping around in use. I found the York SRTBs fit perfectly on this surface: sliding on easily but with no excess play at all. While I use muscle clamps, I get the impression that you could comfortably use this bar/SRTB combination without any restraining device and the weights would stay put.

Again - thanks Pierre for the personal delivery, and please know that you have an open invitation anytime you want to come over and check out my modest - but growing! - home gym.

Sam
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Old 11-23-2006, 07:21 AM   #10
Allison Foreman
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Guys, I really appreciate the kind words and support of York's products and customer service! We certainly strive for excellence in both arenas, and I absolutely value the CF connection!!
Owen, just got your PM, but it was in my spam folder! Just emailed you back with pricing and the 30% discount. Will need your delivery zip for lowest available freight calculations. Thanks again, guys!!
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