Old Champion C Channel Power Cage Old Champion C Channel Power Cage

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Thread: Old Champion C Channel Power Cage

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2022
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    15

    Default Old Champion C Channel Power Cage

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    I am looking around for a power cage for a garage gym.

    I came across what looks to be a pretty old Champion Barbell power cage.

    The uprights are 3” x 1 1/2”, and if I am using my calipers correctly, they are 1/4” steel at the edge and thicken slightly as you measure back into the body.

    The hooks consist of two massive bolts - two per hook - welded at an angle through 1/4” steel plate. The head of the bolt sticks up at an angle to hold the bar, the other end of the bolt goes through the holes in the uprights, and there is a nut on the the end.

    The holes are 1”, as are the safety pins.

    The rack is 90” tall with a 2” base, by 47” wide, and 27” deep.

    The holes on the uprights are spaced at 5”.

    The whole spacing is a bit of a concern - I will be working out alone - so I may rely on the safety pins.

    When I am benching, the 5” seems like a long ways between holes. In the worst case, if one set of holes is 1/4 of an inch too low to protect my head, having to move the pins up 5” may be too high to bring the bar down to my chest.

    Does anyone know anything about these old Champion C Channel power racks?

    The price is petty attractive - $300.

    Is this cage worth serious consideration?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2021
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    45

    Default

    I have no comment to make about the rack itself, but if you can't do fine adjustments with the safeties, you could do it with the deck underneath you: Sections of horse mat cut to the right sizes can give you a (small) number of 3/4" increments to play with underneath the bench (with similar adjustments for your feet). There are also 1/2" mats of the same material out there, if you want, though I wouldn't expect the difference of 1/4" to matter between the two types.

    It's the same for any exercise, really, if you do it right, e.g. for the hooks... Just don't have yourself walking out a weight while making an unstable traverse, and make sure the surface is stable enough.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    North Texas
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    49,239

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    These are the racks that were in my gym in WF for 40 years. The main problem with them is that 1-inch 1018 bar stock will bend if a heavy bar is dropped on the pins. But we made do with them, and you can too.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
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    164

    Default

    Make sure your ceiling height is adequate for the arc needed to stand the rack up

    A basic hand drill, some light oil and a hole saw bit from Home Depot is all you need to customize the pin hole height for your bench height

    Drill pilot holes carefully with a small bit first so when you use the hole saw bit it will track accurately

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    North Texas
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobman View Post
    Make sure your ceiling height is adequate for the arc needed to stand the rack up

    A basic hand drill, some light oil and a hole saw bit from Home Depot is all you need to customize the pin hole height for your bench height

    Drill pilot holes carefully with a small bit first so when you use the hole saw bit it will track accurately
    Wouldn't it be easier to shim the floor of the rack?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
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    164

    Default

    Maybe it would be

    With 5 inch gaps it might take quite a bit of shimming to get it right on the money.

    What I suggested wouldn’t take 30 minutes once you round up the tools.

    It was just a suggestion and how I would do it, and be done with the issue forever.

    I was just trying to be helpful, either way will work. $300 for a useful rack and $20 for a hole saw bit to customize it for himself is still a good deal. I was just letting him see there was an easy way to fix to what his concern was.


    A stall mat to chop up for shims I think would be more expensive than that bit.

  7. #7
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    Jul 2007
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    North Texas
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    Champion rack holes were on 3-incg centers. Maybe this is a different make. If you drill the holes, make them 1 1/8".

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2022
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    Thanks for all of the input - I ended up deciding to bite the bullet and get a Rogue RML-390 F. It was a $1000, which was a lot of money - but the Champion seemed like it would need a lot of modifications and I was worried about what I would do if I needed to replace the J hooks, etc.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    North Texas
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    You passed up a classic old Champion rack with its own training history for a piece of Rogue-square-tubing junk, because you don't know a welder? Embarrassing.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2021
    Posts
    45

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    starting strength coach development program
    It's a long shot, but since I do know a welder...

    Hey, Mike...that rack doesn't happen to still be available and in Wisconsin, does it?

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