T Nation

Quality Bar Discussion


I was thinking of grabbing a York training bar from Rogue, but my coach was advising against it given his experience with York bars. Does anyone else have any bad experience with York?

Also, what would be the next step up. I won't have the scratch for an Eleiko/Ivanko/Werksan anytime soon. I'm guessing the next step up in price would be the Pendlay Bearing?

Anyone have any experience with the "Burgener Bearing Bar" by Rogue? It is $50 cheaper than the Pendlay.


My friend has a York Elite competition bar and it's my favourite bar to lift on. Centre knurling is too harsh and needs to be filed down a little, but otherwise it's a great bar. No experience with the training bar though.


The newer York bars are not as good the old split sleve design ones. I've got three old york bars that are 20+ years old and straight as an arrow, and one new one that bent in a week. There are lots of places to get barbells. What is the top of your budget?


The York training is 250 shipped, which is why I was considering it because I can get that kind of money, esp for a 28mm bearing bar. $550 shipped seems to be the next step up in price and I could do that, I would prob have to wait a bit longer.

I can't see myself paying $800 anytime in the next 6 months, so it just depends on where I think its worth it. If the York training bar is shit, then Ill wait for something in the 550 or 800 range.


I don't own this bar but it has a lifetime guarantee. Maybe something to look into.


I own a 28.5mm bar already, Im trying to find a 28mm with bearings.


When you're buying a barbell for your home gym, I would say to save up for a better bar rather than skimp and regret it later. A good bar will last you decades so will pay for itself over time. A cheap bar will break sooner and perform poorly the whole time. The best bar I've ever lifted on was an Eleiko competition bar from the 80s. Obviously not everyone has the money for those up front though.

In my experience, York Elite competition & training bars are decent, but not great. My current gym used to have non Elite Yorks which were very basic bars that I would stay away from. I don't have any experience with the new NexGen Pendlay bars, but I much preferred the old Pendlay bar over the York Elites we had and from what I hear the NexGen bars are even better. I would also recommend avoiding bars that don't have center knurling, like the one posted above.


Hugs his eleiko bars :slightly_smiling:

OxMan has a York bar for about £300 or so. He likes it but the knurling is harsh...



I can highly recommend the pendlay bearing bar. I have trained extensively on it the last 4-5 months. I havent been able to make it to the gym to use the elikos. Had to train at work with my pendlay 5-6 workouts per week. I would personally take it over the elikos at this point.

The knurling is gorgeous. Really "locks" you into the bar. this becomes better and better as you season the bar and break it in. That being said the knurling is the furthest thing from harsh. My hands have been in great shape and it doesnt chew them up at all. The elikos on the other hand hack my thumb to bits on saturdays. I didnt notice this until i worked with the pendaly. Life can be good on your thumbs.

the matte finish on the pendlay is also nice because it doesnt get that greasy feel without chalk. I can get a few warm up sets in chalk free and I am a chalk whore. Sweatiest hands ever. I chalk up to eat dinner its that bad.

The whip on the pendlay is nice too. Same as the elikos as far as i can tell. Rotation is smooth too. No maintenance needed so far but if there were case where it needed some i have total confidence in the Pendlay guys. I have nothing but good service from them and i probly emailed them a billion times before actually buying anything and they took some unnecessary time for me. I'm a really shitty consumer like that.

Needless to say im impressed. Some of my best PR's are on that bar and I really wish i could keep using it but the noise complaint assholes at work are out in force, cushy platform or not. Fussy skirts.

I've also lifted on a york at a local "performance" center and it doesnt come close. I cant stress enough that when you buy a bar to go for one that you like no matter the quality. In this game the bar is everything. It's your training partner, your opponent and your child all at the same time. You rely on it to make you stronger and faster. you rely on it to challenge you. And despite all that it's your job to help the bar "move up" in life as it were.



Thanks a lot Chris, I will prob go with this then. Perhaps the US gov will be gracious to me this fiscal year in regards to taxes.


I'm partial to Werksan bars myself, but they are very pricy (~$900)but I just got an email from them saying they're doing free shipping now until sometime after the holidays. I've used York bars but they aren't anything super special and I've noticed that after a few years of heavy lifting that they start to develop sticking points. One of my absolute favorites was this Powell (I'm about positive this was the name) bar.

It has a silky smooth rotation and was slightly thicker in diameter and had knurling right where you need it. I loved practicing with this one so that when it came competition time I felt like I had a better grip on the comp bars. When I say they were thicker I'm talking the comps are 25mm and this was 26 or 27mm.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that I totally agree that you should wait and get a better bar because they will (in my experience) last a lot longer if cared for.


I used the York training bar and at first I liked it. Then our gym got a Pendlay bearing bar. The Pendlay is way better. The York training bar had lots of spin - almost too much. I had to hook grip even on warm up weight because the bar would spin out of my hands if I was unhooked. The knurling was somewhat harsh but it had to be to compensate for the slippery chrome finish. The Pendlay has good, smooth spin and very comfortable knurling. The knurling has almost a soft feel to it. I actually like the Pendlay better than an Eleiko bar that I used. No experience with the Burgener bearing bar.


I have a york oly bar. One of the lower level training ones. It has great spin, the knurling is quite harsh though, attacked it with a metal file! I don't lift enough weight to know about flex. Overall I would say it is an average to good bar as people have said. Not as good as the eleikos (understandably) but a hell of a lot better than a standard gym bar! I couldnt really afford to get a really good bar. My plan was to get the york bar then in a couple of years get a good pendlay or something and have my current york for squats/strength exercises!


The Pendlay bar is the way to go worth every penny and he will stand behind them. I've had mine for over 5 yrs and it's been dropped ALOT with no problems.


What's the price for ELEIKO bars and 25kg plates?


about as much as a full pendlay set


Agreed. Pendlay bars are both durable and have "true reaction". My lifters have always commented on the kinder knurling. Price, durability and spin considered, probably the best buy around.
We have about 7 of these bars. Another plus is that Glenn stands behind his product.



Do you guys use the 'bushing' or 'bearing' bars?



guys, please help. Is what can be seen from the link above, the York training bar that some of you've been referring to? It's listed as £59.95 or about 70 euros and free delivery from the French amazon site. It sounds a bit too good to be true. Is it?

PS: regarding purpose: I'm looking at a good bar to do cleans with at home. 3 days a week we do the full lifts at the gym with decent to very good bars. I have an option to buy one of the old and little bent bars from the gym for 50 euro, so I was wondering if the York bars would have been a better buy instead.


I bet its bearing. I got a spin of the bushing bar the other day and it's not really the same game.