Precise 50 mm collar opening (incompatible with cheap bars). Even a machined 25 kilogram discs that is guaranteed to be within 2% of stated weight can be off by up to 500 grams.
I could also mention that you can get more weight on the bar with calibrated plates because of how razor thin they are, but I personally do not know anyone that’s not currently prepping for the Arnold Strongman Classic that runs out of sleeve space with 1 wide steel plates. Here are the prices for all four major brands of calibrated plates ; for comparison purposes.
Calibrated Powerlifting Discs are a premium product, and as such they cost quite a bit more than cheap cast iron plates. The Rep Equalizers, and to a lesser extent the Rogues, are less enough per pound that some decent money would be saved on a large quantity of plates (say about 25%), but if you were eyeballing Troy or Ivanka, well that’s a pretty simple upgrade decision to go from 2% accuracy to 10 g accuracy for a few percent more money, or less in the case of Ivanka.
If money is tight buy some basic machined plates like the Rep Equalizers for $1.45 a pound. If you do not care about accuracy at all (which seems weird) or you don’t have more than a couple of hundred to drop on a set, you should look for used machined plates before you buy the cheap, box-store cast iron plates (which won’t be accurate at all).
At the end of the day, if you have the money to spend I think calibrated plates are worth the investment for your gym, but for most people’s purposes the machined discs will technically suffice. Know exactly what you’re lifting all the time, and with no imbalances from one side to the other like with box-store cast iron plates.
The sort of minor paint damage you can expect to see with frequent use. With lifts that require loading and unloading of the bar while it’s on the ground (deadlifts, basically), plates can be hard to get on or off the sleeve.
Expensive compared to generic cast iron plates. Calibrated plates won’t fit cheap bars, but I doubt this comes up often.
Matter of fact, I want to expand my collection, and will either do so with more Rogue plates, or the new Vulcan plates. You may not feel like you need calibrated plates and that’s totally acceptable, just don’t be overwhelmed by the price because they just are not that expensive compared to machined plates or competition bumpers.
If you’re after some simple, classic black plates to help you make regular, noticeable gains then these are certainly worth a look. Yes, they take up more real estate on the sleeve, but I don’t lift anywhere near enough for that to be a problem.
This may seem like a minor thing, but over the long-term, these old-school cast iron plates are actually much less annoying to use than the calibrated plates. The heaviest plates have ridges on the inside of the center bore.
However, if you’re not controlled in how you add and remove them, they can stick and scratch the shit out of the sleeve’s finish. Not only have my Create Ohio Bar’s sleeves taken a bit of a beating, it can also make a helluva racket when putting them on and taking them off.
Ultimately, while these are some of Rogue’s cheaper plates, they’re still representative of the company’s trademark high quality. Prior to purchasing mine, I had noticed that some others have complained about the gloss black finish making these plates somewhat slippery.
Plus, while the gloss finish is a little slick, the casting isn’t perfectly smooth. As with most cast iron plates, the finish is a somewhat prone to chipping.
Mine have some small chips, and rust has started to set in on these spots. This really just adds to the aesthetic, and is not difficult to remedy with some touch up paint from the hardware store.
However, to quote Rogue Fitness themselves, quality plates should be all about performance, and not winning beauty pageants. There’s not a huge amount to say here: These plates are extremely well-made and absolutely do the job of being heavy and well-cast.
Being steel plates, they’re best suited to controlled powerlifting as opposed to the more dynamic Olympic lifting. Rogue’s Cast Iron Olympic Plates are awesome.
For one, there are a ton of companies making budget-level home gym equipment that although cheaper than what was available in previous years, is still of decent quality. Lastly, and this is the basis for this article, is there are many people posting their setups on how to build a home gym on the cheap for inspiration.
The squat cage sits on a DIY Weightlifting Platform that is just big enough to allow deadlifts without feeling cramped. This one uses rubber puzzle style mats that should limit the noise from dropping weights and protect their foundation.
Lastly, is a Wall Control Pegboard setup that has all sorts of attachments, bands, knee wraps and the like. The reason I say that is because I constantly see people with hardly any money figuring out a way to start working out at home.
You don’t have to have an insanely tall squat rack or overbuilt barbell, you just need some basic items to get you started. New OPTIONAL Attachments for J-Hooks, Dip Bars, Weight Plate Holders and Landmine (Sold Separately) 2" x 2" square steel frame construction.
Can be folded for storage New OPTIONAL Attachments for J-Hooks, Dip Bars, Weight Plate Holders and Landmine (Sold Separately) On the back of the rack, a lat pull down attachment was added that increases the price quite a bit, but isn’t needed unless you do a lot of bodybuilding type of movements.
The multi-grip pull-up bar and spotter pins allow for a lot of versatility in addition to the normal functions of a power cage. It doesn’t look like there’s a ton of weight, but plates are something that can be added slowly over time as you find them on Craigslist.
In the middle of the rack its an adjustable bench that also includes a preacher curl and leg extension attachment. Easily switch from one exercise to next and with the turn of a dial you can change your resistance, enabling you to gradually increase your strength.
Compatible with the free Bow flex Selected® training App for iOS and Android. No more picking up 30 different dumbbells to give you the results you want! Say goodbye to 15 sets of dumbbells cluttering your workout space. With weight that adjusts from 5 to 52.5 lbs., you'll continue to see results as your fitness level improves. Durable molding around metal plates provides for a smooth lift-off and quieter workouts...no clanging metal plates ! With the wider weight range you can do heavy exercises such as shrugs and lunges as well as lighter exercises such as curls and raises. Buy Now ($299.00)The other standout piece of equipment that likely gets quite a bit of use are the Bow flex Selected 552 Adjustable Dumbbells.
The rack and the rest of the equipment all sits on a DIY Weightlifting Platform that appears to have some cushion on the bottom for sound suppression. The Mark Lat Pull-down and Low Row Cable Machine XM-7618 targets the upper back, shoulders and arms.
The Mark XM-7618 is uses 11-gauge 2" x 3" steel, nylon coated aircraft quality cables, extra-thick 3" Aura craft cushion, a flip-up footplate for use with the low row bar and two 14" chrome Olympic sleeve adaptors. Also included is tear resistant Aura guard vinyl, skid-resistant feet and a baked powder coat finish.
Included are bars for lat pull downs, low rows, bicep curls, tricep presses and shrugs. Test) cables • Heavy duty 11-gauge 2" x 3" construction • High and low pulley stations • For use with Olympic or standard weight plates • Chrome plated Olympic adapter sleeves included • Extra-thick 3" Aura craft cushion • Tear resistant Aura guard vinyl • Oversized 4.33” vinyl covered thigh pads with chrome end caps • Textured rubber hand grips • Flip-up diamond foot plate • Baked powder coat finish • Bolted on, skid resistant feet • 400 lb.
What really makes this gym appealing in my eyes is the awesome photography along the back wall and the massive mirror contrasting the garage door. I don’t love this combo rack because there are no spotter arms which is dangerous when training alone, but it appears to possibly be homemade.
Texas Power Bars have different finishes available including black zinc and chrome plating. Hundreds of state, national, international and world powerlifting records have been and continue to be set and broken on the Texas Power Bar.
The most impressive part of the gym, and I’ll think you’d agree is all the DIY Storage areas. He even is using a cable pulley system for low rows to target his back muscles in the picture, showing just how versatile a shipping container gym can be.
To achieve this, our engineering team developed a unique hinge-and-pin system that is both easy to install and rock solid. In use as a squat stand, pull up rig, or power rack, the feel is miles beyond lighter fold-back setups that use thinner steel. The RML-3WC Fold-Back Rack is manufactured in Columbus, Ohio, and includes two laser-cut, 3×3” 11 gauge steel uprights, with Westside hole spacing through the bench/pull area and 2”-on-center spacing above and below.
All steel is powder coated in the Rogue factory for a durable finish, with 11 custom color options to choose from. Stringers Included Standard optimal support, we’re including a pair of stringers with any Custom Color Fold Back Rack order. Made from laser-cut and formed 3×3” 11 gauge steel, these stringers measure 59” long x 10.125” tall, and extend 0.8125” off the mounting surface when installed.
A fold-away Rogue RML-3WC in a matching Bright Blue colorway as well as some barbells, plates, and crash pads for dropping weight. This gym is built inside a standard shed that includes a roll-up garage door, horse stall mats, and a concrete foundation.
As with the entire Rogue S-Series, we’ve designed the S-1 for both durability and ease-of-use, starting with 2×3” 11-Gauge steel uprights, Westside hole spacing, and J-cups with protective UH MW plastic liners. Tested at a weight capacity topping 1,000LB, the latest model of the S-1 also includes an updated base that replaces the formed socket with the same bolted triangle plates used on our Monster Lite squat stands, improving the overall stability of the unit. Because it’s the smallest and most practical of the S Series squat stands, the S-1 does not have pull-up bar holes.
The S-1 is also compatible with a wide range of 2×3” accessories, including the Safety Spotter Arms, and Rogue Landmines. Buy Now ($345.00)All of this equipment is top of the line, but because there are so few pieces, it makes an awesome setup within reach for most people trying to lift at home.
ASSAULT AIRLINE Finally, a heavy-duty exercise bike designed directly from the feedback of athletes and coaches. The Assault Airline reinvents and retools nearly every component of the traditional fan bike, from the frame construction to the crank, pedals, monitor and more.
While fan bikes have existed for nearly half a century, modern advances in their design and function have made them increasingly in-demand among military personnel, pro and college sports teams, competitive cyclists and sprinters, and high performance athletes from the cross-training ranks. In the age of smartphones and tablets, an old-fashioned, clunky fitness bike monitor simply doesn’t cut it.
Even watts can be monitored with precision accuracy, thanks to the Airline’s 20-horsepower electric motor and carefully calibrated torque measurement meter. You won’t just feel the effects of a good workout, you’ll be able to see the science behind it in real time.
In addition to the rack setup, this gym has an Assault Bike that is the favorite among CrossFit Games Athletes as well as a plyo-box from Rogue and some gymnastics rings. If you don’t have a lot of space or money but still want to be able to do some training at home, this type of setup can be both cheap and effective.