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Buying a Barbell

Posted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 2:26 am
by TheHeb
Hi everyone.

I'm coming off a long layoff (a few months of sporadic lifting) basically due to lack of gym access/equipment.

I'm now in the process of putting equipment in my basement, but I need to buy a quality barbell. I was looking at the Rippetoe Bar because I know it's pretty versatile and good for both Oly lifting and the slower lifts, and it's got the center knurling, which I like. However, it's uncoated, so apparently it rusts without frequent maintenance. Knowing myself, I'm not sure I have the time or discipline/motivation to wipe it down every week.

Are there any good alternatives people can suggest?

I'm pretty short and have a narrow grip for most lifts, so I'd prefer a bar with a smaller gap between the knurling. Or at least not extra wide. Center knurling is also preferred but beggar's can't be choosers. Something that's good for squatting and deadlifting mostly. Price range also maxes out around $300. I know that's limiting but push come to shove I'd rather spend $300 on a Rippetoe or Pendlay.

So does anyone have any good recommendations?

Posted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:12 am
by stuward
If you're keeping it out of the wet, you shouldn't have to do much to it. If you're leaving it outside or sitting in a puddle, that's another story. I don't know why anyone would treat a $300 bar that way.

Posted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:43 am
by TheHeb
Well, the basement is a bit humid. I guess that could be fixed with a dehumidifier.

Posted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:05 am
by stuward
This bar is bare steel and just like any fine piece of machined steel this will require some upkeep. Occasionally brushing the bar down with 3 in 1 oil or WD-40 will create a beautiful patina look. This is how bars were made for decades and this creates an unmatched feel

Doesn't sound like much work to me.

There are a couple of finish treatments that could be used to make the bar corrisive resistant. There are Bluing (Black Oxide) and Parkerizing (Black Phosphate). Both are feasible DIY projects and instructions are easily found in the internet from gun fans. It seems odd that this option wasn't made available from the manufacturer.

If it does get rusty, clean it with Navy Jelly (Phosphoric acid).

Posted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:13 pm
by TheHeb
Thanks. Helpful as always stuward.

Just ordered it from Rogue Fitness. I'll let you know what it feels like when it arrives.

Posted: Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:51 pm
by TheHeb
Got my barbell yesterday, used it today for the first time. It's great. Maintenance is easy. I keep a rag and a can of mineral spirits by my rack. I just wipe it down when I'm done with it. Takes two minutes.

It's the best barbell I've ever used. Good buy.