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Thread: Old Champion C Channel Power Cage

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logan1 View Post

    Since the T-2 which uses 14-guage 2x2" uprights and the Garage series which has 16-gauge 2x2" uprights both have a floor level crossmember, it is a reasonable assumption that one is needed for racks that weigh less than 1/2 as much as the 390F or the X-3. Perhaps Rogue, Titan and others that make flatfoot racks with 11-gauge 3x3" uprights believe that are stable enough without additional ground level support.
    The T-2 claims to use 2 x 2-inch 12-Gauge Steel Uprights. The Garage series claims 16-gauge 2x2" uprights but both racks weigh in at about the same weight. Given that 12-gauge still is twice as thick as 16-gauge steel, there is clearly something wrong with the spec sheets for one (or both) of those racks. That's something I haven't figured out.

    I can not speak for what Rogue/Titan believe. But they *sell* ground-level cross members for the purpose of increasing stability. So maybe that's just a marketing gimmick to take money from dopes like me. Or maybe those really do improve the safety of the racks. Or maybe a little bit of both to various degrees.

    If *weight* were the factor in lateral stability, one could use the bolt-down rack as a flatfoot rack simply by adding some plate storage to the bottom of the uprights and putting a few hundred pounds of weight there. DONT DO THIS! If the rack says it needs to be bolted down, it needs to be bolted down. The "flat foot" racks are different only in those triangular pieces of steel that are supposed to be a substitute for the floor bolts in terms of preventing the rack getting "out of square."

    Rogue and Titan both made versions of these racks that required bolting to the ground. They saw that there was a market for people who didn't want to bolt things and they came up with "flat foot" variants. But you can see the difference between the original and "flat foot" versions and it's only some triangular steel plates.

    Rogue doesn't have the instructions on their web site that I can find. I'd love to see if the instructions recommend checking for squareness periodically.

  2. #32
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    With lighter racks, something needs to be done to keep the rack from moving and possibly flipping over. Even if the manufacturer doesn't urge a purchaser to bolt it to the floor or add plates to the bottom crossmember, I would do one if not both. If the total weight of the garage series is 115 pounds, I wouldn't want to do weighted pullups on one end of the rack without knowing that something was keeping the rack from coming down on top of me. Even if one is careful racking a heavy squat or hitting the uprights while benching while using a light rack, there is still risk of serious injury unless something is done to hold the rack in place. There are videos of squat racks flipping over.

    With a 300 pound rack with rack mounted plates, most mortals aren't at risk of knocking it over or pulling it over on themselves. As two of us have mentioned, there are brackets than can be used to secure a rack to a platform.

    The flat foot racks have short base frames which would make it difficult to attach a floor level crossmember as it would be in the way when lifting

    Checking bolts periodically for tightness is never a bad idea.

    You're correct about the T-2 being 12-gauge.

  3. #33
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    The weight of the rack is obviously a function of the gauge of the steel. A rack with 11-gauge 3x3" steel like the 390F or the X-3 is going to be sturdier and safer than one with 12-gauge 2x2" uprights. Although mid and upper end racks from better manufacturers are safer than their budget models because they can support more weight and are in general more stable, for most recreational lifters the difference isn't significant. As I said earlier, some manufacturers added floor stabilizers to their offerings with thinner steel. Although I am unaware of instances of racks collapsing, I feel safer with a rack that uses heavier steel on the uprights rather than trying to stabilize 12 or 14-gauge steel.

  4. #34
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    I just realized that the Greysteel gym uses Rogue flat foot racks - I don't know the model - with no cross piece.

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  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikepwagner View Post
    I just realized that the Greysteel gym uses Rogue flat foot racks - I don't know the model - with no cross piece.

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    Yes and they also have a full floor just like the SS cages setup in WFAC (except the floor at Greysteel seems to not be quite as thick). And for sure the rack is super-stable this way.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikepwagner View Post
    I just realized that the Greysteel gym uses Rogue flat foot racks - I don't know the model - with no cross piece.

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    Based on the hole spacing and the lack of rubber foot pads, I am almost certain it's the RML-390F and not the RM-390F.

  7. #37
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    Eleitefts, Rogue, Sorinex and Texas Strength Systems, all of which use 11-gauge steel and at least 2x3” uprights, do not add a floor level brace to their racks. Of the companies I considered when purchasing a rack, I believe only Titan sells a rack with 12-gauge steel. Although I knew there are some companies that used 14-gauge steel, I was surprised that Fringe Fitness sells one with 16-gauge steel.

    Different manufacturers may rate capacity differently. For example, Titan states that the total capacity of the X-3 flat foot is 6170 pounds and the rackable capacity is 1650 pounds. For consistency, I am using Titan’s rackable numbers.

    Titan’s X-3 flat foot with 11-gauge 3x3” uprights is rated at 1650 pounds. The T-3 with 11-gauge 2x3” uprights is rated at 1100 pounds. The T-2 with 12-gauge 2x2” uprights and an additional floor brace is rated at 850 pounds. Using the same methodology, what would the rackable capacity be for a 16-gauge 2x2” Fringe Fitness rack?

    It’s a bit unusual for someone who bought a rack with 16-gauge 2x2” steel to argue that a 11-gauge 3x3” rack is unsafe without an additional support. Does anyone seriously believe that a rack whose main difference between it and the T-2 (with a rackable capacity of 850 pounds) is the use of much thinner steel is a safer option than the X-3 (which has a rackable capacity of 1650 pounds) or the 390F?

    When gyms were closed and equipment was hard to get, I understand why someone might have purchased a rack with 12-gauge or 14-gauge steel. Now that here is ample availability, isn’t it time for serious lifters to avoid racks made from thinner steel and to only consider those racks which are not only safe when one is starting out but suitable for intermediate and advance lifters?

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logan1 View Post
    Eleitefts, Rogue, Sorinex and Texas Strength Systems, all of which use 11-gauge steel and at least 2x3” uprights, do not add a floor level brace to their racks. Of the companies I considered when purchasing a rack, I believe only Titan sells a rack with 12-gauge steel. Although I knew there are some companies that used 14-gauge steel, I was surprised that Fringe Fitness sells one with 16-gauge steel.

    Different manufacturers may rate capacity differently. For example, Titan states that the total capacity of the X-3 flat foot is 6170 pounds and the rackable capacity is 1650 pounds. For consistency, I am using Titan’s rackable numbers.

    Titan’s X-3 flat foot with 11-gauge 3x3” uprights is rated at 1650 pounds. The T-3 with 11-gauge 2x3” uprights is rated at 1100 pounds. The T-2 with 12-gauge 2x2” uprights and an additional floor brace is rated at 850 pounds. Using the same methodology, what would the rackable capacity be for a 16-gauge 2x2” Fringe Fitness rack?

    It’s a bit unusual for someone who bought a rack with 16-gauge 2x2” steel to argue that a 11-gauge 3x3” rack is unsafe without an additional support. Does anyone seriously believe that a rack whose main difference between it and the T-2 (with a rackable capacity of 850 pounds) is the use of much thinner steel is a safer option than the X-3 (which has a rackable capacity of 1650 pounds) or the 390F?

    When gyms were closed and equipment was hard to get, I understand why someone might have purchased a rack with 12-gauge or 14-gauge steel. Now that here is ample availability, isn’t it time for serious lifters to avoid racks made from thinner steel and to only consider those racks which are not only safe when one is starting out but suitable for intermediate and advance lifters?
    In this, I think we are mostly in agreement! To answer your specific question about the Fringesport garage squat rack, it claims to have a capacity of 700lbs. I have not seen any independent testing of that and I haven't gotten my squat or bench up to that yet.

    Based on the spec sheets, I have no idea why anybody would by the Fringesport rack. I own it because it's what I could get during the pandemic. That being said, because I own it, there are many positive things in the design that aren't advertised (for whatever reason). Specifically, there are metal plates that reinforce every spot where the rack bolts together. So although it's true that the uprights are 16 gauge steel, at the places where pieces bolt together, there is much more metal. There is actually as much metal in the FringeSport squat rack at 16 gauge uprights as the Titan T-2 with 12-guage uprights. The difference is that the Fringesport has the bulk of the material where it matters most. The Titan T2 is designed so that you can either bolt it to the ground or not which is also a pretty nice feature.

    I seem to have hit a nerve here and I apologize for that.

    If you go to the Rogue web site and look at the reviews for their "stabilizer bars," they are all "5-stars" with statements like "Before I felt like the rack was too prone to movement, especially side to side when racking and reracking heavy. These stabilizers removed 100% of the side to side movement."

    I wouldn't have responded to this thread again except that somebody made the *excellent* point that a rear stabilizer bar would "get in the way" and this seems to be a valid complaint among the users of stabilizer bar (again based on reviews at Rogue's website)

    The plate horns on the T2 (and FringeSport) are such that the rack actually weighs an additional 360 pounds when in use (assuming you keep 4x45lb plates on each horn) Of course once you do that the rack is no longer price competitive with heavier racks. It's kind of a hidden cost.

    If I were going to buy a rack today based on price it would be the T2. If I were going to look for something high-quality domestically made it would be the SS rack.

    I am in no way saying the RML-390F is a bad rack or "unsafe" but selling a rack and then selling accessories to stabilize it is a terrible practice. Either the rack is safe without the additional stabilizers (in which case don't sell them) or the rack needs them in which case they should be included in the package.

    The SS rack comes with a 2.375" wood platform that has the effect of lateral stabilization. This is the way things should be designed and how business should be done.

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by EdTice View Post
    Yes and they also have a full floor just like the SS cages setup in WFAC (except the floor at Greysteel seems to not be quite as thick). And for sure the rack is super-stable this way.
    It looks like Greysteel places a 3/4" roughly 4x4' mat inside the rack. Although that mat should keep the rack from shifting sideways and may make the workout area less slippery, I don't see how it a roughly 70 pound mat inside a 300 pound rack would add appreciably to a its stability. On the other hand, bolting a rack to a platform would keep the rack in place while still allowing some flex at the top.

    Unless I am mistaken, the racks in WFAC are bolted to the platform that the lifter is standing on. There is a video of Chase pressing 350 pounds. Although the rack shakes from start to finish, the rack would be fine with a multiple of that weight even if someone was as aggressive as Chase is when unracking and reracking the bar.

    Chase Presses 350 lbs at WFAC - YouTube

  10. #40
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    Although incredibly sturdy, the original SS racks had a working depth of 19" and a 36" base, which I believe would make bolting them necessary. In contrast, the RML-390F has a depth of 30" and a 48" base.

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