Your home gym is slowly taking shape. A high-quality barbell set is next on your radar so you can resume some of your favorite Olympic and Crossfit lifts.
But with your budget slowly dwindling after purchasing a rubber hex dumbbell set and an adjustable bench, you're left with only $1100.
With a freshly laid wooden floor under average rubber matting, you know you can't afford cast iron barbell weight plates dropped from any height. 300 lbs. or more of quality rubber bumper plates, a decent barbell, and collars would be great. Even if that was possible, you know the best deals will be online. Now you have to factor in shipping cost that could bring the total purchase amount to more than your budget.
Can you purchase a brand new barbell weight set that includes over 300 lbs. of rubber bumper plates in various plate sizes, a good barbell, and a pair of collars from a well-known and trusted brand such as Rogue, or is that just wishful thinking?
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Hi, I'm Psymon H, your online training partner, workout motivator, and the man putting his 40-years training experience to good use, helping people to grow their physiques and mentality from weeds to oak trees.
A while back, I was given this same task by one of my clients who wanted to build a budget-friendly home gym. Even though money was tight, he still wanted good quality equipment that would last and something he could expand on.
We started with a set of rubber dumbbells, and an adjustable bench and later purchased a decent adjustable squat rack and some rubber matting to protect his new floors. Knowing he was keen to resume his bench press squat deadlifts and clean and press work, we started looking for the best barbell weight set.
My client had three requirements:
1: It had to be a brand new barbell set with 300 lbs. or more weight.
2: Purchase amount to be no more than $1100
3: Barbell weight plates must come in various sized rubber bumper plates
I will show you the barbell weight set we eventually settled on. Next, I'll compare similar items with another company to see how they stack up. Hopefully, if you're on a tight budget and looking for a barbell set to expand your exercise options without having to sacrifice quality and durability, this article will give you some ideas...Let's Go!
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The Alpha Bar & Bumper Set is an absolute must-have if you're in the market for quality gym equipment for your home gym space. This weight set not only looks the part but is a purchase that won't break the bank and will last for years.
Rogue has now made it possible to extend your home equipment options and boost your strength-training workouts with commercial-grade hardware fit for your local gym. Let's break down the Alpha bar and bumper set package.
Introduced in 2014, the Ohio Bar is a 20kg powerlifting bar that quickly became one of the most popular bars on the Rogue Barbell Roster. Manufactured in their facility in Columbus, this 190,000 PSI steel bar with dual knurl marks is guaranteed for life against breaking or bending.
In a market saturated by average and below-average barbells that seem to bend like bananas after a few heavy lifts, the Ohio Bar will quickly become your deadlift, bench press, and squat workhorse. The bar will support up to 1,260 pounds of loaded weight.
Unlike other bars with deep-cut knurls, the knurling on the Ohio Bar is aggressive enough to provide a sustainable grip without ripping the skin off your fingers.
All in all, this bar has a mild whip which makes it great for deadlifts.
Shaft Coating Options:
If you like to match your bar to the rest of your home gym equipment, this barbell set lets you choose your shaft coating finish - Black Zinc plating w/ Bright Zinc sleeves or Black Oxide.
This barbell set also includes a set of Rogue OSO Barbell collars that feature a patented lock mechanism for easy use and a secure hold.
Image for a moment the bumper plates in this barbell set being battle-tested at the CrossFit Games; that huge!
The Rogue HG Bumper plates are high-performance and durable to the core. This barbell set includes two 10-lb. plates warrantied for 90 days, two 25lb. two-35 lb. and four 45 lb. bumper plates warrantied for three years.
Revamped with new artwork and a black-on-black logo, the bumper plate diameter is 450mm/ 17.72. They have stainless steel inserts and weight tolerance of +/- 1% of claimed weight.
Now, you could go out and get a generic set of rubber plates with a generic bar; but why would you when this barbell set is ridiculously well-priced at $1,020.00. The bonus is that there is no shipping fee in the US.
The Alpha Bar and Bumper Set has a 4.8-star rating with 53 reviews.
I could stop here and call it a day, but I wanted to compare the ALPHA BAR & BUMPER SET by Rogue with a similar barbell set with Rep Fitness.
Even though Rep Fitness didn't have a designated barbell set we could compare with the Rogue barbell weight set, we did manage to put together our package of individual items.
If you're looking for a barbell that will stand "bell for bell" with the Ohio Bar, the 20kg Gladiator Olympic Barbell by Rep Fitness could be that bar. The name tells you that this is serious-steel and ideal for Olympic weightlifting and mixed-use.
The Gladiator and Ohio bars are almost the same in diameter, with the Ohio bar being 0.5mm larger. This makes both bars great for squat, bench, and deadlifts.
The Gladiator uses five needle bearings per sleeve that allow for a smooth turnover and spin during lifts, whereas the Ohio Bar ops for bronze bushings for a reliable spin.
The loadable sleeve length on both bars is almost identical with the Ohio bar being a shade longer at 16.40" than the Gladiator's 16.3". Both bars are made from Stainless steel and equally matched when it comes to tolerance of 1%.
With IWF knurl markings and ribbed sleeves, the Gladiator barbell 20kg has a center knurl, which helps hold the bar in place during the back squat, whereas the Ohio bar does have no center knurl.
The Gladiator is designed to work with any standard plates featuring 2” diameter center holes.
This product had a 4.9-star rating with 73 reviews
Even though these bumper plates never had the privilege of being associated with the CrossFit Games, they are durable enough to hold their own.
These Hi-Temp Bumper Plates are made from recycled tires which are heated up and compressed, making them environmentally friendly.
Callouts: The biggest complaint I have with Hi-Temps is that the diameter is smaller than IWF Standard bumper plates. I might be a tab too harsh, but being 5mm smaller, it can make it difficult to use other plates on the bar at the same time.
Due to the way the plates are made and molded, Hi-Temps are known for their center stainless steel hubs popping out when dropped with only 10 LB plates loaded.
While Hi-Temps guarantee to be within +/- 0.5 LB of the claimed weight, this is still a pretty wide range.
We put together the same bumper plate set
Two - 10 lbs.
Two - 25 lbs.
Two - 35 lbs.
Four - 45 lbs.
This product had a 5-star rating with 8 reviews.
I would have preferred to go with the signature Black Bumper plates by Rep Fitness because they looked better quality and there was more information to compare. Unfortunately, the stack was outside of our budget and would have cost $779.95.
REP Fitness decided to make their spring clips after customers would use other brands and found that the clips would bend, stretch out or lose shape.
This product had a 4.9-star rating with 26 reviews.
Price: If you compare the two barbell weight sets, you can see that the two barbell sets are almost the same in price with the Alpha Bar and Bumper set by Rogue coming in at $45 cheaper.
Bars: The Ohio Bar and the Gladiator Bar were closely matched in size, structure, performance, and feel. The Gladiator Bar by Rep Fitness just beats the Ohio Bar with a Static Rating of 1500 lbs. and has a center Knurl for a better grip in the back squat. Both come with a limited lifetime warranty.
Both the Ohio bar's bushing and the Gladiator's bearing sleeves produce sufficient sleeve rotation. The Gladiator's needle bearings allow for a faster, smoother, quieter spin with a more reliable turnover when using maximum loads. This is much better for Olympic-style lifting such as the snatch and clean and jerk. The bushing sleeve of the Ohio bar is more efficient for powerlifting movements because these movements are slower and more strength driven.
Plates: Hands down, the HG 2.0 Bumper Set by Rogue wins the battle of the plates, but that's not to say that the Hi-Temp Bumper Plates by Rep Fitness won't stand up to the rigors of dynamic lifting. For an extra $100, we could have made Rep Fitness a little more competitive.
Collars: In my opinion, Rogue pulls ahead here because its OSO Barbell collars feature a patented lock mechanism for easy use and a secure hold.
Shipping: Both companies offer free shipping which is a bonus in anyone's book.
Verdict: Both barbell sets are great for any home gym space and present great value and decent quality. If I'm looking at the barbell set as a whole, The Rogue package wins for a few reasons
1: You can purchase the barbell set in one go
2: Rogue came in a little cheaper
3: The bumper plates came with a few more credentials
If I had a slightly larger budget, the Rep Fitness custom package with the Black bumper plate upgrade would have made it a much harder choice because I felt that the Gladiator bar was a little better than the Ohio Bar.
Q: What is a barbell set?
A: A good quality barbell set consists of a barbell which is often an Olympic bar, plates that can be either cast iron or rubber bumper plates and a pair of collars to secure the plates on the bar.
Q: What are barbell weights called?
A: In weightlifting, powerlifting, bodybuilding, and CrossFit, barbell weights are called plates. They would usually be called Olympic plates. These plates can be made from either cast iron, rubber, urethane, or recycled material. Plates come in different weights, usually ranging from 2.5 lbs. to 45 lb. plates.
Q: How much should a barbell set cost?
A: With a barbell set you often pay for what you get. The price will often depend on a few different factors such as
1: How much weight in lbs. or kg is being purchased
2: If the barbell is a good quality Olympic bar this will cost more.
3: If the plates are cast iron or virgin rubber bumper plates. The latter will cost more.
A decent quality barbell set such as the Alpha Bar and Bumper Set from Rogue cost $1,020.00
Q: What are the Knurl markings on the bar used for?
A: The knurl markings allow for lifters to set up for a lift and provide a visual for even hand placement on the barbell.
I hope this barbell set article was of help to you.