T Nation

Equipment Opinions


Hello, I'm Tom and I'm new to the forum. As you can guess by my handle I'm a skinny bastard but I'm gearing up to change that. Beginning with Starting Strength by Rippetoe. I've been searching for some equipment and believe I've found a good barbell, weights and power cage. Opinions on the quality of this equipment or something I should substitute in?


The piece of gear I am having real difficulty finding is a good quality adjustable bench. If anyone has any suggestions please post them. Thanks in advance!


It's hard to say much about your bar without actually seeing/using it. I'm sure it's fine for a beginner.

The rack is basically the same one I have but with a different manufacturers sticker on it. It is nothing special but it will suffice.

I can't stand that grip type of plates. I'd just get a set of Standards. If you really think you need the rubber you can get it without the grip holes.

All of that stuff can easily be bought used. Craigslist is the best place to buy them. That rack shouldn't cost more than $100 used. Non-rubber plates should be no more than $.50/pound. A bar will probably be around $50. All of this stuff is fine used, with the exception possibly of a bar. the rack is just a bunch of square tubing that will last forever. Same with cast iron plates. A bar can wear out (bearings, bending, worn knurling), but it takes a long time and most used ones you find have plenty of life left in them.


What do you think is wrong with the rubber plates, or the rubber plates with the grip holes?

Having used both, I like them better. If they weigh the exact same, and he wants to spend the money on the rubber ones, I see no problem.

They are also quiet. He may be working out in a neighboring room to someone who doesn't want to hear every rep he does.


x2 Craiglist for cheap equipment.
If money not an issue elitefts has very high quality stuff


There's nothing wrong with rubber plates if you are doing olympic lifting. If you're not, they are just bulkier and harder to grip with little added benefit.

I just have a thing against any plates with the grip holes. There's not really a logical reason, I guess I'm just too much of a traditionalist for some things.


Thanks for the replies so far. I'd prefer to get new stuff rather than go to Craigslist. I chose the rubber coated ones so if they hit the floor with a bit of oomph it would not damage it. I hadn't thought about the noise factor but now that it has been pointed out I'd prefer the rubber coated weights all the more.

Does anyone have any recommendations for brand/model of an adjustable bench?


$600 for 255lbs of rubber coated iron weights is a waste of money, IMO. Rogue Fitness has 260lbs of bumpers for $485 including shipping. If you're worried about your floor get the bumper plates.

Take the saved money and buy some more 45's as 255 will start to feel a little too light pretty quickly.


Thanks for all the advice, this is what I've decided to go with


Total is $1752.08 (includes shipping), better value than the stuff I was considering at Dicks Sporting Goods. If no one comes back and says York is garbage I'll be putting in the order.



...I'll be picking this up myself in the coming week. I'm going to upgrade to the Rippetoe and Burgener bar though.


Sounds like you're off to a good start. Good luck.


Nice stuff. I have the same bar.

Rubber cased iron plates are not bumper plates and are not suitable for dumping. Bumper plates are solid rubber.

I have a few bumper plates, they are cool. The 10 pounders will warp if you bounce them around too much.

I picked up a PowerTec FID bench off Amazon.com for a song ($165) The price fluctuates weekly it seesm. Nice bench but the Ironmaster bench seems to be the favorite on here.


Welcome you skinny bastard!



I just checked CL in Austin.

$250 for a power rack, oly bar, 300lbs. of weights and an adjustable bench.

$25 per 45lb. plate from another post.

So figure for $400 you would have enough until you started squatting or deadlifting over 450 and wanted more plates.

Add in another $100 for some rubber floor mats.

$500 total.

I don't see any reason to buy new. It isn't going to be used as a decoration and as long as the welds are solid it will hold up fine.