T Nation

What Equipment Can't You Lift Without?

I’ve decided to set up my own training studio. I’ve told my girlfriend it’s to make some spare change whilst at uni, but really it’s so I can have the best equipment for myself to use. I’m tired of using crap stuff at the uni gym.

Because I’m a poor uni student, budget is pretty stringent, however with the use it will get, there’s no point in buying crap gear. So I’m buying the best I can and will add to it as finances permit.

My bare minimum to get started is:

(1)Power rack
(2)Variable bench
(3)Olympic barbell
(4)Olympic dumbell
(5)Weight tree.
(7)175kg of olympic weights.
(8)Fitness balls. 55 & 65cm.

I can do everything I need with that stuff. I can’t wait to do some curls with badass olympic dumbells! But it’s a bitch to do calves on the stairs.

So if I can stretch the budget enough I’ll also get (9)standing calf machine, (10)leg press and (11)seated calf.

However the calgym leg press alone is about 4grand so I don’t think it’s gonna happen.

The hammer gear is awesome quality but it’s damn expensive so I might have to go the calgym, which is good but it’s not hammer gear. I’m trying to keep the total price under 5 grand (australian).

So what do people think? Is there anything missing that you wouldn’t be able to get a good workout without?

And if you were the type to get personal training, how impressed would you be if you saw this stuff under your trainers house? Nothing but the best for my guys (and me, heh heh)

You might throw in some money and get a pull-up/dip station and a weight belt. That alone covers a decent amount of body work.

Also… if money permits… get some kettlebells. <-- That is sure to grab customers

Buy a welder and make as much of your own equipment as possible.

Excellent idea, flabtoslab! Have you done that kind of thing before?

iron woodys KB handles look excellent.

much less expensive than KB

Also, make yourself some sandbags. CHEAP!!

A couple 45 pound rubber weights. A set of bands.


[quote]flabtoslab wrote:
Buy a welder and make as much of your own equipment as possible.[/quote]Thats what we do. the cable crossover is the latest cost us under a $100.


Heres the leg sled we built.


A full gym pic.


Another from the other end of the room.

If you get the leg press you can do calf raises with it.


This rack comes with a chin up/pull up and dip pegs.

It’s really best when you have access to a welder so you don’t have to incur the cost of ownership.

Anyway, I was able to build a few thick bars and a set of farmers walk handles fairly cheaply (around $40 for all of it).

I’m working on a powerrack right now with 1" hole spacing.

2x2 square steel stock is relatively inexpensive. A drill press is also required to drill uniform holes on all pieces. Compared to a rack from elitefts.com, I might spend $150.00. Not to shabby.

Don’t let some scare you off, welding is alot easier than it seems. A little practice will yield excellent results. Just look around and take measurements of stuff you’d like to build.

Mr. Marine knows what I’m talking about.

Thanks for the suggests guys.

Yes, welding would be the way to go. I have no excuses. I’m lazy and would rather just buy what I need. I also have welded all of once in my life, so I think getting the skills to making my own gear is a long way off. But I totally agree, that’s by far the most economical way to do it. I’m really impressed by MrMarine’s gear. That stuff looks excellent.

That rack looks good thrasher but I’m in Australia so I’m limited to stuff that’s distributed here. It’s easier that way if I need to put something back in on warranty.

Kettleballs is something I haven’t really considered. They don’t make my list of ‘essential’ equipment and I’m a bit opposed to them because they’re not adjustable, you have to buy a separate one for each weight. Something to consider for the future maybe. Ditto for bands.

I’d love to get a pull/up dip station but I took it out of the list after serious consideration because I think i’d be the only one using it. Most ppl who are wanting personal training aren’t going to be able to perform 1 full pull up, let alone a dip. I figured I can work the triceps and lats with the barbell and dumbell. There’s also pull up handles on the hammer rack, which is pretty nifty. Dips are great, but CG Bench presses and skullcrushers do the same muscles. They’re not as effective, but cheaper than buying a whole dedicated station.

The only thing I thought I was missing is a reverse hyper, but I’m having trouble finding any sold in australia.

Seriously thinking of getting rid of the standing calf and just getting the leg press instead. I’ve never liked doing calf work on a leg press, but it’s a good idea. Would save me money and space too.

Thanks again for the responses guys. Keep em coming if you think of anything else.

i like to build stuff but i have no welding skills, i do however have a few friends who are very good with metal manipulations. im going to see about getting some aluminum still rings made, hes waiting to see on the cost of aluminum v steel and time to go use a mandrel bender at some other shop.

i was thinking that i would be building some equipment soon and was wondering where you get pads for that stuff? i worked for a fitness equip place before so i could get some cheaper body solid brand pads for free but its nothing compared to the firmness of a cybex. i could also stitch my own, but im still missing what i need to put inside and where i would get that. i am pretty sure joeane fabrices does not sell it because i buy fleece and viny from there when im doing custom car work.

would leather make a good fabric for a bench? i think that would be pretty burly.

For the padding, your going to need some really high density foam. Most likely the internet. (I even searched for ya)

www.fabricsbyous.com get the virgin foam, it will be the stiffist.

As for leather, I would say no. Naugahide (spelling?) would be ideal, or the heavy duty vinly from heavybags if you could find it.