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Old 09-30-2009, 05:56 PM   #21
Robert Britt Freund
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

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Originally Posted by Tim Robinson View Post
Just got it today. It's superb. I've had\used the Ivanko stainless bar, a york elite, york USA power bar, Iron grip, and others in the past, but I believe on initial impression I prefer the B&R to any of them. As others have noted, fantastic knurling and a great feel (to me). For 300 bucks? A++++

It should be noted that I PREFER a 29 mm bar, and do more slow powerlifting movements than oly lifts. I've always liked the York bars but wasn't crazy about the chrome plating, and the raw steel takes care of that.

I couldn't be happier. Thanks to Rogue, York and especially coaches B&R for bringing this bar to market.
Tim, enjoy your bar. It is a good one. Don't forget to keep care of it so that it stays pretty as well as functional...
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Old 09-30-2009, 06:32 PM   #22
Robert Britt Freund
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

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Originally Posted by Matt Corley View Post
Any suggestions on a fat bar? I'm going to be setting up a home gym in the next year and am doing the research now. I'd be using it for powerlifts mostly.

Thanks in advance,

matt
Hi Matt. This is a good question, but I am not sure you will like the answer.

Tom Grace, owner of Black Iron Strength, claims the patent on a fat bar with rotating sleeves. He is fairly aggressive about going after companies that offer any kind of oversized bar with rotating collars. It is not entirely clear if the patent will stand up in court, but you will find very few other companies offering this kind of bar. EliteFTS does offer a 7' Olympic Fat Bar with Revolving Ends - Deluxe Model for $459 + $65 shipping. I don't know the status of that bar vis a vis Black Iron Strength and any litigation.

Most any fat bar you find, aside from those by Black Iron Strength and the one from EliteFTS will be fixed bars - the "collars" don't rotate and it is essentially either a solid hunk of steel or a pipe. Those kinds of bars are pretty hard on the wrists and elbows if you are not careful, although deadlifts and bench presses are probably fine in moderation. I wouldn't suggest doing cleans or overhead presses with a fixed bar.

I would say that most unbiased observers would agree that Black Iron Strength makes the best (highest quality) fat bars that you can buy. They are very well made and quite rugged. The sleeves use a nice heavy-duty bronze bushing and spin quite well - not up to the spin of a B&R bar or the Rogue bar, but close. However, they do not use a snap ring and, instead, rely upon the old bolt style that is not as nice or secure. The bar is black oxide and the sleeves are chromed.

The biggest drawback to a Black Iron Strength bar is the cost - it is simply too expensive for what you are getting (at least compared to the price vs performance of a standard Olympic bar). They run about $540 plus $70 shipping and handling. I would argue that $610 delivered is an awfully high price for this bar. However, it is made in the USA of all US parts, so that is worth something.

My suggestion, if you do want to go the Black Iron Strength route, is to get the 7' long 45 lb 1.75" diameter bar. It is standard length and weight, and 1.75" is a good starting point for a fat bar. Much later on, you might want to go to a 2" bar (depending on your hand size and how much fat bar grip work you want to do).

They have a variety of other diameters, but in order to keep the weight close to the standard 45 lbs, they are usually shorter than 7'.

I can't say much about the EliteFTS bar since I have never used or even seen one. I also don't know what to say regarding Grace's claims of a patent. Tom Grace is a good guy and spends a lot of time and money developing innovative strength training products. An interesting fact is that he was one of the West Point cadets (football player) that was a test subject for the Nautilus West Point Experiment back in the 70's. That was one of the most famous weight training experiments ever, where Arthur Jones was trying to demonstrate the combined strength and conditioning impact of high-speed circuit training. A very crude precursor to some of the ideas in CrossFit

Hope this helps. Truth is, I really like my Black Iron Strength bar (the aforementioned 7'x45lbsx1.75" diameter bar). It is fun to use for various lifts and rotates plenty smoothly enough for the fast lifts. I, personally, would not use a fixed fat bar because I dislike the feel. I had a 2" fixed fat bar (solid steel) for a while that weighed almost 100 lbs. It was a pain to load, a pain to use (hard on the wrists and elbows), and just didn't "feel right." The Black Iron Strength bar feels just like a Rogue bar, only with a very fat handle. Of course, I am not particularly price sensitive for my hobby, and I grudgingly paid the $610 to get the bar

Regards,
brittf
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Old 10-01-2009, 06:29 AM   #23
Matt Corley
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

Thanks for the response. I've been leaning towards EliteFTS's bar but probably not for a while.

Thanks again for the response especially the in-depth information on the collars it was very helpful and educational.
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Old 10-14-2009, 11:32 AM   #24
Ben Sparks
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

Just in case anyone needs one, Christian's Fitness Factory has a special on the CAP bar that I use. It's less than $200 including shipping. 28mm bar, 1200# capacity, etc.

My own observations (what they don't write on the site) include that it has oil-impregnated brass bushings (no leakage or damp spots after about 10mo of use), snap-rings on the ends of the collars (not bolts), and the collars have 'slop' ie knocking back & forth along the length of the bar of less than 1/8" of an inch. One side is less than 1/16". The ends are stamped with the same model number advertised at CFF.

CAP makes many bars, most of which are of lesser (bolted, primarily) quality. I'm still quite happy with this one.

http://www.christiansfitnessfactory....mpic-Power-Bar (WFS)
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Old 10-14-2009, 10:39 PM   #25
Dustin Doyle
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

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Christian's Fitness Factory has a special on the CAP bar that I use. It's less than $200 including shipping. 28mm bar, 1200# capacity, etc.
Hello Ben Sparks. Do you or anyone else have an opinion on which bar would be better for me to buy? I am currently looking at the one you linked to above, the Rogue bar that Robert Britt Freund has mentioned earlier in this thread, or this one from the Fitness Factory http://www.fitnessfactory.com/Home/Item.cfm?ID=3023 (WFS) that someone else suggested in another thread.

The costs are similar, the only real difference I can see is slight change in price, knurling quality which is an unknown to me for the non Rogue bars, snap rings, and the amount and type of corrosion protection. They all can support more weight than I can.

Since the one that Ben Sparks linked to is the cheapest, why should I consider the Rogue bar, other than the more universal diameter of 28.4mm which I am thinking would be better for someone like me who only plans to buy one bar. Then again I can currently only bench press a bit more than a hundred pounds, so I am wondering if I will advance to the point where bounce matters? I am improving that a bit each day though, I currently have a very high rate of progress. My only goal with weight lifting is to get stronger, not competitions or attempting to lift a lot as a sport.

For some background information on myself I am 27 years old, 5'7", and should get back down to 130+ pounds pretty soon. I got my current lifting setup last Friday for $50 off Craig's List. The bar weights 15 pounds, can telescope and disconnect in the middle, and uses one inch in weights. It came with 90 pounds of weights and I am afraid to load it much higher than that, or drop it at all. The bench was well worth the practically free price though.

Thank you all for your help.
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:33 AM   #26
William Henniger
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

With regards to a "1200 LB" Bar, here are my thoughts as I would compare it to a Rogue Bar:

1) Static strength ratings are near meaningless because you are going to put a dynamic load on the bar if you plan on lifting with it.

2) I can make a "1200LB" bar for that price with black zinc, chrome collars and olympic knurl in the US but I don't think it will stand up to heavy abuse. So rather than offering a bar that bends, we make bars that have a very small probability of bending. The Beater and Burner bars are our answer to a cost efficient bar line. The Burner Bar is made of the same steel as high end bars but with zero coating, old school bare steel.

3) It has been my observation that CrossFit athletes evolve and begin going heavier with both power and olympic weightlifting. Once this occurs they begin bending bars.

4) The Rogue Bar is made of the same steel of other bars that are priced $50 more and is guaranteed for life against bending and/or issues with collars. They are on every USMC base in the world right now and we have not replaced any of them. To date we have replaced two bars out of thousands that bent due to dropping in a rack but we still replaced them within 24 Hours.

In short we stand behind anything we place the Rogue name on and I think there are many of you that can testify to that statement. You are buying an American Piece of Equipment with a Guarantee that will not waiver.

A weightlifting bar is something that your entire gym is centered upon, making the right purchase the first time is something that I believe will make a very big difference.

We use our bars and have just about every bar known to man in our gym for testing, if anyone has questions just call: 614.358.6190 ask for Bill or Kris

Hope that helps.
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:24 AM   #27
Ben Sparks
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

Dustin, I would recommend you re-read Robert Britt Freund's excellent posts on bars and use them to determine whether you need an indoor or indoor/outdoor; a dynamic, stiff, or neutral bar; a smooth-spinning needle bearing or a bushing bar, etc. Factor in your hand size, gym humidity, and your budget.

The CAP bar I own is actually 28.6mm (http://www.capbarbell.com/bars.html WFS - scroll across to "Power bars" and find the OB-86B). Christian's is short on description. I'm happy with the bar, but it definitely has some flex to it. I generally ride it hard and put it away wet, as for the price I'm just not going to spend a lot of time on maintenance. Last night I did Elizabeth as Rx'd and dropped it from rack height 45 times with 135#s on it, and (as always) its still the same as it was when I started. The knurling is comfortable, and the index lines aren't cut into the knurling, but are the same radius as the rest of the bar. To me, its a great, low maintenance Oly lifting bar. I would compare it to the Rogue Burner or the Pendlay Next Gen Bushing Class which are also fantastic bars at very competitive prices - basically the exact same price as the OB-86B when its not on sale.

My next one will be a stiffer, 'slow lift' bar, probably either the Rogue Beater or the B&R, based largely on this thread.
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Old 10-15-2009, 11:03 AM   #28
Dustin Doyle
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

Thank you for your help.

I ended up going with the ROGUE bar, PW20WMM for $255.00.
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Old 10-23-2009, 11:59 AM   #29
Allen Griffin
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

Maybe Robert or Bill can chime in on this one. Just want to make sure I made a decent decision.

Currently, I have a Pendlay HD bar. Not the NEXGEN HD. I have used this mostly for Oly lifting and the occassional WOD. I would like it to be strictly used for Oly lifting so I got another bar for the powerlifting, slower lifts. I decided on the York Strength Training Bar from ROGUE.

http://www.roguefitness.com/store/product382.html

I will be using this bar for the DL, SP, BS, FS and maybe the occasional BP and any WODS that include these lifts. Does anybody think that the York bar would be a bad fit? Is there a better option for the $$$?

I think I would like the B&R bar, but my basement is humid and I'm not fond of all the maintenance involved. Thanks for any input.
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Old 10-23-2009, 12:52 PM   #30
William Henniger
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Re: Some Thoughts on Bars

If you are looking for a cheaper slow lift bar the Beater Bar wfs is fine. It is 31MM and is guaranteed for one year against bending. It is exactly as it is named a Beater Bar, you can beat the heck out of it and it will be staring back at you.

My personal preference for power lifts is the Burg and Rip bar but if I wanted a cheaper bar that will work for the slow lifts then this would be it. I would not recommend the Beater for honing your Olympic lifts. It would be fine for doing a large group WOD like Fight Gone Bad or something.

Feel free to call me if you want to discuss it further: 614.358.6190 You can ask for me or Kris! Email works as well: bill@roguefitness.com

Thanks,

Bill
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