Wednesday, January 31, 2024

2024 USAWA Grip Championships Plan

I am still planning on heading to Abilene the the 2024 Grip Championships hosted by Al's Dino Gym.  As an homage to Al's uniform opinions, I went ahead and ordered a singlet.


The events include:

Pinch Grip Strict - 70, 80, 80 [50 yo, 90/95kg open/open; ALL 160/170]
Vertical Bar - 75, 85, 100, 110 [50 yo, 90/95kg open/open, ALL 182/225]
Deadlift Fingers, Index - 45, 75, 80, 90 [50 yo, 90/95kg 185/135]
Deadlift, Fulton - 127, 157, 197, 217 [50 yo, 90/95kg 390/open]
Rim Lift - 107, 157, 187, 207 (still had some in the tank) [50 yo, 90/95kg open/open, ALL open/125]

As there are no existing records, I should be able to set some in the Pinch Grip, V Bar and Rim Lift.  At 95kg I would set a mark in the Deadlift, Fulton.  The Deadlift Fingers, Index is out of reach.


If Al includes a records session, I would like to try the following lifts due to having the right equipment at Dino Gym and the fact that they are relatively light to load.

Roman Chair Sit-up (45)
Bench Press Roman Chair (50)
Abdominal Raise on Roman Chair (40)
Back Extension (50)
Deadlift 3 Inch Bar
Dumbbell Walk
Saxon Snatch


I would like to officiate to get a practical training session in working towards Official Certification


Finally, I want to measure and take pictures of his Equipment including

Hip Belt
Neck Harness
Harness Lift Harness
Travis Lift Attachment
Hand Rails
Back Lift
Foot Press
Roman Chair
Rim Lift Bar - note span collar to collar
Saxon Plank design


Packing List

Wrist wraps
Mouth Guard
CrossFit TR Lite
First Aid
Lip Balm
Hoody - Remove before lifts
Phone Tripod, remote and extra battery

York NFL

Michael Songcuya Lumanog is killing me by dropping the price on these.  They were originally $400 plus shipping, but are now $400 shipped.  He is knocking off roughly $100 taking these from $5.50/lb down to $4.50/lb.  Pretty good deal for unique York plates.  He dropped the price all the way down to $300 shipped with no takers.

Larry Scott Preacher Bench

Imagine my surprise when I find that this has been for sale on Craigslist in Arvada for a week.  Looks to be in great shape and hopefully I hear back from the seller, Kevin Thomas who posted it on Facebook yesterday for $150.

I got turned on to these based on a post from Forgotten Fitness who did a 27 hour round trip to pick up a similar bench in Fort Collins.  Not sure why Colorado turned into a hotbed for these.

He also has a ComMax Sissy Squat Bench ($50) and 15-15-10-10 dumbbells for $40.  Take everything for $200.

  • Leverage Leg Press - $2497
  • Lower Abdominal Bench - $297
  • Olympic 4 in 1 bench - $797
  • Olympic Bench - $497
  • Olympic Decline Bench - $677
  • Olympic Incline Bench - $597
  • Plate Loaded 4-Way Neck Developer - $497
  • Plate Loaded Leg Curl & Extension - $760
  • Quad-Ham Roaster - $599
  • Scott Preacher Bench - $997
  • Seated Calf Machine - $477
  • Spider Bench - $497
  • Twin Pedestal Bench - $297
UPDATE 2/1/2024:  It turns out the seller also had it on Craigslist and the contact included an email alias and a phone number.   I called, left a message and got a call back within minutes (my Facebook message and e-mail were never responded to).  We made a plan to meet in the morning.  Kevin was a nice guy who has been lifting the last 50 years and it shows.  He was rearranging his home gym to accommodate a leverage squat machine and was parting with a few items.

He purchased the preacher curl bench from a guy in Erie, CO about 1.5 years ago.  The Sissy Squat apparatus was a more recent purchase.  I did not ask about the dumbbells.

The Preacher Curl bench was as described without any tears or damage.  It was missing the pin and Kevin had been setting it with an Allen key.  Still well worth asking.

I would need a 3/8" x 2.5" grip length pin.  ($5-$10 on Amazon)

I did pay $200 for everything which works out to:

Dumbbells - $30 (50 cents/pound)
Sissy Squat - $40
Preacher Curl - $130

In my head, I am planning to sell the dumbbells for $40 to recoup some funds.  I do want to train with the sissy squat for some time and then keep or sell for $40-$50.

UPDATE: 2/2/2024:  I listed the dumbbells ($40), sissy squat ($40) and a 50 pound dead ball ($40) that I had.  I had (9) inquiries on the Sissy Squat and it sold within hours of listing.  I have had some interest in the dumbbells, but no interest in the dead ball.

UPDATE: 2/3/2024:  The dumbbells sold today for the asking price of $40 after (10) inquiries and (3) seemingly serious buyers.  I need to start putting first come, first serve on my listings.  Nobody seemed too bent out of shape.

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

USAWA - Roman Chair Training - EMOM

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Foam Roll
Reverse Hyper
Crossover Symmetry
Hip Hammy Flow

USAWA - Roman Chair Training

All lifts are not USAWA compliant as the bench surface in at an 11 degree incline.

Roman Chair Sit-up

25, 35, 45 pounds

This was an interesting movement that got increasingly difficult as the diameter of the plate changed.  Depending on where the center of mass is on the "abdomen" this could be very difficult of very easy.

50 year old 90/95kg record is open.  All time world record is 1000 pounds by Al Myers.

Abdominal Raise on Roman Chair

30, 40 pounds

No variability here.  The bar on the back of the neck forces a very long lever arm.

50 year old 90/95kg record is open.  All time world record is 70 pounds by Al Myers.

Bench Press Roman Chair

40, 50 pounds

The press is actually not taxing on the arms, but keeping braced with load is very difficult.

50 year old 90/95kg record is open.  All time world record is 250 pounds by Dave Beversdorf.

Back Extension

50 pounds

This movement was taxing in securing the barbell in the crooks of the arm.  It never felt comfortable at the down position trying to bring it to parallel.

50 year old 90/95kg record is open.  All time record is 180 pounds by Al Myers.

While my Roman Chair/Back Extension movements were not official due to the 11 degree angle, I am still declaring victory and moving my new total USAWA lift attempts to 81 of 187*

*Of the (187), I cannot perform (10) due to physical limitations (177) personal max.  (16) others require special equipment that I do not have yet.  My home gym maximum is (161).
  1. Bench Press - Reverse Grip - Right wrist mobility
  2. Clean & Press - Reverse Grip - Right wrist mobility
  3. Jackson Press (Reverse Grip press from racks) - Right wrist mobility
  4. Snatch - Kelly (Reverse snatch) - Requires extreme mobility
  5. Squat - One Leg - Requires extreme strength & mobility (1 male and 0 female records)
  6. Curl - Wrist - Right wrist mobility
  7. Inman Mile - Nobody has accomplished this, I will not be the first
  8. Mansfield Lift - Requires extreme mobility, bend down with straight legs and pick up barbell in crooks of elbows (1 male and 3 females have records)
  9. Van Dam Lift - Extreme hip mobility (2 male and 0 female records)
  10. Chin Up - Right wrist mobility

Station 1 - 5 deadball over shoulder (55#)
Station 2 - 4 burpees
Station 3 - 20 second battle rope
Station 4 - 10 push-ups

Worked out to roughly 20 seconds work and 40 seconds rest.  Good mover to get the heart rate up, but not redlining.

Hip Belt and Neck Harness

Hip Belt design

Dave DeForest was kind enough to send measurement and pictures of the hip belts they use.  Leather is 3 inches wide x 55 inches long, folded over for a 45 inch belt length.  3.5 inch D-rings.  34 inches of chain.  Slip hook secured with  a clevis pin shackle.  

The length will drive a custom fabrication.  I may go ahead and order some D-rings to use for Hip Belt and Neck Harness and then work with Tandy Leather on strips or full hide and fabrication.  Chain, grab hook and quick link can wait.
  • 3 inch by 55 inch leather - $30
  • D-rings - $10 (Jim's Leather Supplies Etsy Shop has 3" 5 for $22, Lodi Metals has 4" Delta Rings for $4.30/each)
  • 5/16" chain - $15 (Lowes) 3 feet x $5/foot
  • 5/16" grab hook - $10 (Lowes) 1 x $10 each
  • 5/16" quick link - $20 (Lowes) 2 x $10 each
James Fuller assembled with 4 inch baler belt ($25 at TSC), carriage bolts and D-rings.

Al Myers assembled from Tow Strap.

Neck Harness Design

More confusing.  Start with D-ring and secure 2 inch strap?  Halo at top?  Length?  

Fortunately, this is a much lower priority for me, but good reminder to purchase extra D-rings and rigging items.

Considering the potential length, tow strap seems like a more reasonable material for this.  Buy a 20' roll, speedy stitcher and heavy waxed twine.

James Fuller sent me a video with his design fabricated from baler belt, D-rings and carriage bolts.

Pictures are from Neck Harness designed and fabricated by Dave DeForest.  It is made of leather that has been fastened with snap rivets.  There are small 2" delta rings that are attached by quick links to a short length of chain to a large delta ring that is ultimately connected to a shackle.

  1. Order speedy stitcher first.  Use to repair/reinforce wrist wraps and have on hand for tow strap connection. ($25)
  2. Order (5) Lodi D-rings, (2) for hip belt, (1) for neck belt, (2) spares in case I switch to leather or baler belt ($30)
  3. Get Tow Strap from Harbor Freight ($20) and assemble hip belt (after Dino Championship)
  4. Order Heavy Lift Bar and Hand & Thigh Bar from Arm Assassin ($210)
  5. Get chain, quick links and grab hook from Lowes ($30)
  6. Test Neck harness designs with two inch tow strap (Harbor Freight, $20) and 2 inch D rings (Online, $20)
  7. Move to leather if required
  8. Move to baler belt if required

Monday, January 29, 2024


Monday, January 29, 2024

Home Gym



1.52 mile run (11:26/mile) at Harriman Lake Park


Clean & Press 12" Base

Built up from 45, 75, 95, 115 pounds.

50 year old 90kg record is 150 pounds set by Larry Blockston in 1998.  50 year old 95kg record is open.

Clean & Press Alternate Grip

Built up from 75, 85, 95 pounds

50 year old 90kg record is 121 pounds set by Larry Blockston in 1998, 50 year old 95kg record is open.

Clean & Press Behind Neck

Made 95 pounds, failed 105 pounds

50 year old 90kg record is 132 pounds by Randy Smith in 2005.  50 year old 95kg record is 198 pounds set by Terry Grow in 1994.

USAWA 2024 Grip Championships

Pinch Grip Strict - 70, 80, 80 [50 yo, 90/95kg open/open; ALL 160/170]

Vertical Bar - 75, 85, 100, 110 [50 yo, 90/95kg open/open, ALL 182/225]

Deadlift Fingers, Index - 45, 75, 80, 90 [50 yo, 90/95kg 185/135]

Deadlift, Fulton - 127, 157, 197, 217 [50 yo, 90/95kg 390/open]

Rim Lift - 107, 157, 187, 207 (still had some in the tank) [50 yo, 90/95kg open/open, ALL open/125]


I am now up to 77 of 187 USAWA lifts

Getting Carried Away with USAWA/Grip/Highland Games/Deka

I have been able to dabble in USAWA/Grip/Highland Games/Deka without too much additional expense, but January has been a little crazy.  I am already at $1365 with another $340 planned.  My season for USAWA will start in February and Grip in March, but Highland Games does not start until June and I have not even scheduled a Deka event.


To date (2022-2023), I had only spent $70 on USAWA specific equipment.  $20 on an old barbell for the sleeves, $30 for a Fulton bar and $20 for an anchor ring.  In January, I have purchased a Roman Chair, Cerberus Dinnie Trainer, 1" v-bars, Fulton Dumbbells and Inch Dumbbells for an additional $680.

Phase 1:  I am prepared to buy a heavy lift bar and hand & thigh bar from Arm Assassin for $210.  Then I will probably fashion a hip belt from tow strap ($20 Harbor Freight), D-rings ($30 Lodi Metals) and 5/16 chain, quick link and grab hook ($30 Lowe's)

Phase 2:  3.5" dumbbell from Arm Assassin for $50 and a 3" axle bar from Titan Fitness for $130.  $180 Total.

I would need a Weaver Stick, Saxon Plank, Trap Bar, Neck Harness, Harness Lift Harness & Hand Rails, Regulation Roman Chair and Vertical Leg Press to build out a USAWA fully equipped gym.


To date (2019-2023), I had only spent $741 on grip stuff.  In January, I have purchased Ironmind Little Big Horn, Rolling Thumber and BSS Flask for an additional $355.

I am prepared to buy an Oka DaBloom for $50 and a Sorinex Saxon Bar for $210.  $260 Total


To date (2023), I had spent $585 on Highland Games equipment.  In January, I purchased a 42# WOB for an additional $200.

I am going to hold off on a 22# Hammer and Blades.


To date (2023), I had spent $50 on Deka.  In January, I purchased a 44 pound Deka RAM for $130.

I am going to hold off on bike erg and tank.  


Saturday, January 27, 2024

1" Final Form V-Bars

I indulged myself with a v-bar purchase from FBBC and could not be more happy.  They arrived today (4 days after I inquired), well packaged and in perfect condition.  My set was modified to 18 long from a standard of 24 inches long for compatibility with USAWA lifting.  The dimensions are dead on and the finishes are immaculate.

I could not be happier with Shawn Pantke's craftsmanship and looking forward to building out my gym with more FBBC stock and custom products.

Metcon - USAWA

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Reverse Hyper
Crossover Symmetry
Hip Hammy Flow


12 Squat Clean Thruster (60#)
400m Run
9 Squat Clean Thruster
400m Run
6 Squat Clean Thruster
400m Run

This was on the main site today and it was a doozy.  I am not a big fan of thrusters, but I know they are good for me.  I finished in 13:38 with slogging runs, but I am taking credit for not setting the bar down.  I used my 5' bar and really like a shorter bar length for my workouts.



Clean & Jerk - 1 Arm

I built up from 45, 55, 65 and finally 75# with both my left and right arm.

Left Arm - 50 year old 90kg record is 55# by Phil Harris in 1997 and the 95kg record is 94# by John Vernacchio in 1991.  I feel like I have a fighting chance to take these on.

Right Arm - 50 year old 90kg record is 121# by Barry Bryan in 2013 and the 95kg record is 88# by Larry Traub in 2012 at the Nationals in Las Vegas.

I am now at 71 of 187 USAWA lifts attempted.

Friday, January 26, 2024


Strength enthusiasts have collectively lost their damn minds.

Eleiko as a continuation of an Aprils Fools joke offered a 18 pound mug that is unusable, but with a limited run of 300 pieces are crazy sought after.  I think they retailed for around $100.

Sorinex not to be outdone has offered a pair of shot glasses at $120.  These actually seem usable, cool and a nice gift.

Rogue had to jump the shark with the artillery shell anvil combination for a mere $495.  Rogue is a large enough company that they can make these and give them away to key customers, partners and sponsored athletes.  Everybody else that has to have one can pony up the funds.

Nemesis Grips

Nemesis Grips is a newcomer to the grip implement world.  They are based out of Carp, Ontario, Canada.  Andrew Nguyen is a true renaissance man as a strength athlete, photographer, metal craftsman and small business owner.  Everything can be customized and the stock offerings certainly cover the gamut of pinch/thumb strength, wrist strength, open hand strength, vertical strength and strongman.

I was originally considering them for the 1.9 inch dumbbells and 2.5 inch dumbbells and collars for USAWA lifting, but could not help myself and added a rolling thumber.

They have more common grip items like half sphere, key pinch - ball, key pinch - coin, pinch block, round hub, rolling handles, vertical cone and vertical rocket.

They also have novel designs like key pinch - nut, square hub, and rolling chimera.

Finally they offer a Saxon Bar (2x5, 3x4) and axle bars (standard and stubby from 1.9, 2-3/8, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4 and 4.5 inches).  I would love to meet the athlete that can put up numbers on a 4.5 inch axle bar.

Finally they have contest tools including uprights, knock bar and crossbar.

They are not just implements, they offer photography and climbing wall services and building a community starting with the "Feather Crush - First Blush" a women's only grip contest in March.

I am beyond excited to get my new implements.  Depending on quality and service, I could see myself picking up more implements and maybe even an axle bar down the road.  Yes, shipping from Canada is expensive, but sometimes it is worth it.

Bench Press - USAWA

Friday, January 26, 2024

Basement Gym


Bench Press



Clean & Press - On Knees (A15)

Being somewhat confined by overhead space, I tried the C&P on knees today.  This was not too bad.

I worked up from 45, 65, 95 and finally 105 pounds.

The 50 year old 90kg record is 145 pounds set by Joe Caron at the 1997 Nationals.  The 50 year old 95kg record is a slightly easier mark at 100 pounds set by Al Springs that same year.  It was last contested in the 2016 2nd quarter postal, but record attempts  have been made by Dave DeForest and Abe Smith in 2020 and 2023.

I am now at 71 of 187 lifts.

Thursday, January 25, 2024

King Kong Events


IronMind Block
Otevoima Finish Ball* Order from Finland
IronMind Little Big Horn
FBBC Crusher


IronMind Block
Otevoima Finish Ball
FBBC Crusher


Otevoima Finish Ball
FBBC Crusher
FBBC Grab Ball* Order from FBBC
Barrel Strength Systems Flask* Out of Stock
IronMind Little Big Horn


Otevoima Finish Ball
FBBC Crusher
FBBC Grab Ball
IronMind Little Big Horn


Barrel Strength Systems Flask
FBBC Crusher
FBBC Grab Ball
IronMind Little Big Horn


Barrel Strength Systems Flask
FBBC Crusher
Barrel Strength Systems DubHub* Out of Stock
IronMind Little Big Horn


Barrel Strength Systems Flask
FBBC Crusher
World of Grip Moon Top* Order from World of Grip
IronMind Little Big Horn


Barrel Strength Systems Flask
FBBC Crusher
World of Grip Stub*
FBBC 2" V-Bar* Order from FBBC


Euro Device One Hand Pinch Deadlift*
FBBC Crusher
World of Grip Shallow Hub* Out of Stock
FBBC 2" V-Bar


Euro Device One Hand Pinch Deadlift *Out of Stock
FBBC Crusher
World of Grip Shallow Hub
FBBC 2" V-Bar


Euro Device One Hand Pinch Deadlift
IronMind Apollon's Axle* $420 from IronMind
IronMind Hub
IronMind Little Big Horn


Euro Device One Hand Pinch Deadlift
IronMind Apollon's Axle
IronMind Hub
IronMind Little Big Horn

Metcon - USAWA

Thursday, January 25, 2024

Garage Gym



Station 1 - 8 cal row
Station 2 - 10 kbs (35#)
Station 3 - 3 shuttle runs (25')
Station 4 - 8 push-ups

Programming was adapted from Vintage CrossFit which called for a 40 minute EMOM with more volume.  This worked out really well for me.  Rows were ~40 seconds, KBS were ~30 seconds, Shuttle Runs ~30 seconds and Push-ups ~10 seconds.  For those keeping up at home, I also secured 48 push-ups.

Clean & Jerk - Behind Neck (A8)

In my effort to complete all of the USAWA lifts, I tried the C&J Behind Neck today.  The toughest part is the transition to the behind neck position.  I would argue the jerk may actually be easier from this position than in front.

I worked with 45, 65, 85, 105, and finally 115 pounds.

The 50 year old 90kg record is 204 pounds set by Bill DiCiccio at the 1990 IAWA event in Glasgow.  Nobody is breaking that anytime soon.  His 204 pound mark is the best among all 50 year old weight classes aside from Scott Schmidt's 220 pound record at 120kg set at the 2003 Buckeye Record Break.  His 204 pound mark is the best among all 90kg aside from Robert English's 250 pound mark as a 40 year old master's athlete set at the 1993 U.S. Inlands.

I am now at 70 of 187 lifts in the 11th Edition of the USAWA Rulebook.  The records list of 219 includes left/right distinctions as well as all of the finger lifts.

Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Run - USAWA - Sit-ups

Wednesday, January 24, 2024

CDOT Fitness Center



1.90 miles (12:53/mile) out and back on the South Platte River Trail.


Clean & Push Press - 2 DB


Clean & Seated Press - 2 DB

80 - ugly

Clean & Press - 2 DB



4x10 weighted sit-ups (10# med ball)

Tuesday, January 23, 2024


Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Charles Whitlock


Warm Up

Hip Hammy Flow


3x185 (right ankle felt wonky)




singles then assisted
8 with 36 lb assist
6 with 33 lb assist
4 with 30 lb assist
2 with 27 lb assist

Recumbent bike for 20 minutes.

60 minutes total workout

Fat Bastard Barbell Company

I had the pleasure to chat with Shawn who has taken over operations at Fat Bastard Barbell Company (FBBC, based out of Michigan).

FBBC was founded by Jerry (spelling?) who ran the business for a number of years and built a strong brand reputation.  Andrew purchased the company about 10 years ago.  Andrew is passionate about grip and introduced some innovations in addition to trying to run a small business.  Andrew has stepped away from the business to spend more time with family.  Shawn is Andrew's father. 

Shawn is a self described crotchety old man who enjoys his title of "Grand Fat Bastard."  I originally inquired via the website about an old school 1" v-bar and was treated to a wonderful conversation and a decision to go with custom FF vertical bars.

Running a machine shop is no small task, with staffing challenges, material challenges, competition from overseas companies and competition from larger companies.  We live in a world that expects better, faster, cheaper and does not concede to be forced to pick two.  Sometimes cheaper is the most important factor and deals can be lost to save $5.

Grip strength is as fundamental to human survival as being able to throw a rock and kill an animal.  In the United States it has been formally contested for a couple of decades.  Grip implements are carefully described by manufacturer.  A Saxon Bar from Sorinex does not equal a Saxon Bar from Arm Assassin Strength Shop.

I originally learned about FBBC when purchasing two implements for the 2023 King Kong International Grip Challenge.  The website was a bit dated, the ordering process seemed haphazard and there was little communication on my order until the crusher and jug arrived well packaged and at a level of quality that was above and beyond my expectations.

A year later, I found myself in the market for some other implements and the response to my inquiry was "give me a call during the week."  

Shawn has fabricated all of the implements for the past 9 years.  He currently has one employee that helps with bending stock and packaging orders.  FBBC work is balanced with parts fabrication for the automotive industry which is somewhat cyclic.

We also talked about FBBC's dumbbells.  For $115, you get a solid steel dumbbell handle that will survive the apocalypse.  If you are in the market for a schedule 40 or schedule 80 pipe cut down to length, there are other places to turn to.  These are solid steel and weigh over 20 pounds with 5" handles and 7.5" loadable ends for an overall length of 20".

Shipping is via flat rate box when possible so as long as it fits in a medium or large flat rate box, you are all set.

Shawn is also very open and excited to make custom products include grippers, custom barbell, etc.  He can use different materials from aluminum, steel, brass and even titanium (although titanium cannot be knurled).

We also briefly talked about his competitors in the space and how they can compete on cost, but not necessarily on quality.  The old adage of you get what you pay for rings true.  He chose his words very carefully and had nothing disparaging to say, but he did point out some of the things he did in his shop that I should pay attention to.

Shawn's wife is working to update the website.  I suggested taking advantage of the logo and maybe marketing shirts, banners, and the like.

Overall, it looks like it will continue to be a great lifestyle business with a lot of potential.  My wish list now includes.

2x2" DB Handle ($115 each)
2x2.5" DB Handle ($135 each)

Interestingly, we talked loading pins and the Omni Loading Pin is not high on his list of favorite items to make.  He is pursuing some innovations of his own, but I will not let the cat out of the bag.

Monday, January 22, 2024

Reeves Deadlift vs Rim Lift

Al Myers did a nice write up on the difference between the Reeves Deadlift and the Rim Lift.  I had been training for the Rim Lift without realizing that I could use a shorter barbell.

A standard Olympic barbell is required to have collar spacing between 51 inches and 58 inches for USAWA lifts.  51 inches will be much easier for the Reeves Deadlift.

With the upcoming grip championships, I thought I have been training the Rim Lift, but using a standard Olympic barbell which is infinitely harder.  This does not play out on the records grid as the Rim Lift was first contested in 2022, while the Reeves Deadlift has records still standing from 2001.

If I think of my preferred shoulder width deadlift grip, it is on the order of 25 inches.  In a perfect world, I would just have a special bar made with 25 inch spacing between the collars.  When I tested how I would typically pick up 2 plates my width was 18 inches.

The other variable is plate diameter.  The images show the lift being contested with 25-35 pound plates and then full 18" plates on the outside.  I suppose I could try the lift with a variety of plates.  Unfortunately I do not have a plethora of plates at my disposal.

For development purposes an axle bar with adjustable inside collar spacing to accommodate different athletes and lifting styles  I could then play with technique for Deadlift, Hack Lift or Jefferson Lift.  In all likelihood, my Deadlift will be the strongest.  

Considering purchasing something.  It would be a one off as I would not really use it for anything else.

Nemesis Grips - Overall 60" 2x8" loadable sleeve $122
Arm Assassin - Overall 60" between sleeves 36" (gripping surface) $80

Custom with 24" gripping surface and 8" loading sleeves or 50" total length.  I am guessing Arm Assassin would build me one of those for $80 as well.

I really need to learn to weld and cut metal.  This would all be so much easier.

Treadmill - USAWA

Monday, January 22, 2024




1% incline
3 min walk
12 min 5.0 mph
2 min walk
6 min 5.0 mph
2 min walk


C&J Dumbbell Left/Right

Build to heavy

70 (made Left, failed Right)

C&P Heels

Build to heavy


Push-up Finisher


6x5 reps = 30 total

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Bench Press - Grip

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Basement Gym


Bench Press

8x45 + alternate grip
5x65 + alternate grip
5x95 + alternate grip
3x115 + alternate grip

Plan was 3x3 and worked in some alternate grip.  Alternate grip puts more strain on my already irritated elbow.


Grandfather Clock


Rim Lift


Wrist Roller

3 efforts in each direction with 10# plate

40 minutes total workout

Saturday, January 20, 2024

1" Vertical Bar

I find myself in the market for a set of vertical bars specifically for the USAWA Grip Championship on February 17th, less than a month away.  

A practical person would just run to Lowes, buy an 18" section of galvanized 3/4" pipe and a floor flange for $25, train for a month and forget about it.

I am anything but practical and am debating between an Arm Assassin set up for $55 per handle loading with Olympic plates, FBBC Old School V-bar for $65 loading with Standard Plates or FBBC Final Form V-bar for $120 loading with Olympic plates.

In all likelihood, I will order a pair of vertical bars driving the cost ever higher.

This would also make a good welding project.  Next class with seats is Feb 5th and Feb 12th at 5:30 PM.


Competing purchases I want to make include:

Nemesis Grips Saxon Bar - $160

Nemesis Grips 3" Barbell - $168 (they make 1.9", 2-3/8", 2.5", 3", 3.5", 4", 4.5")

Nemesis Grips Dumbbell Bundle
1.9" Dumbbell Handle - $46 each
2.5" Dumbbell Handle - $51 each
Lock Collar - $13 each
--Total = $220-- Free shipping to US from Canada

Sourcing for 1 inch Vertical Bars

Arm Assassin Strength Shop

$25 per handle (Olympic or Standard)
$30 per loading pin (Olympic or Standard)

handle is 6", loading pin is 18", custom cut to 12" to meet USAWA spec

$110 less 5% plus shipping


$80 FF Vertical Bar Base (1.9" diameter)
$40 1" Head

$240 plus shipping

$65 Old School V-bar (1" diameter handle welded to a solid steel base, 24" length, custom cut to 18")

$130 plus shipping


3/4" Pipe & Flanges (standard plates will not fit, Olympic plates will slop around)

$15.28 3/4-in x 18" Galvanized Pipe
$25.47 3/4-in x 36" Galvanized Pipe
$10.65 3/4-in Galvanized Floor Flange

$51 including tax (single for $28)

Custom Fabricate

C&M Metal and Iron Sales?

1" solid bar (18") - $30.83 Etsy 222Steel
1" solid bar (24") - $36.52 Etsy 222Steel
3" diameter 11 gauge steel plate - $5 Etsy 222Steel
Welding - $10 per?

$92 plus shipping, transport, etc

Dinnie - Napalm

Saturday, January 20, 2023

Basement Gym


Warm Up

Hip Hammy Flow

Dinnie Trainers

205+150=355 pounds

It took me a minute to figure out the loading.  Heavy weight is on the 21 inch handle height loading pin (large ring).  Light weight is on the 18 inch handle height loading pin (small ring).  The light weight should be roughly 75% of the heavy weight.

The actual stones are 414 lb 8 oz and 318 lb 8 oz.  The relative weight is actual 76.8%

EatChalkGetBig has a great write up on the stones and other stones around Ireland and the world.  I feel like a 500 pound pick is within my reach.  Beth put up 510 at the Hackendinnie Classic (the next three lifters had 475, 350 and 300 respectively).

I set all of my lifts up with my left hand grabbing the heavy weight behind me and my right hand grabbing the light weight in front of me.  In the future, I will move the heavy weight around (right hand, left hand, front and back) and develop a comfort level.  Probably using 120+95=215 as a training weight (60% of 1RM).

Napalm Nightmare


I got a little ahead of myself after watching a video of Jedd Johnson putting up 430 pounds and figuring I should be able to manage half of that.  At any rate, this was a pretty comfortable movement for me and feel like I could get comfortable at 225 pounds.

45 minute total workout

Friday, January 19, 2024

Strict Press

Friday, January 19, 2024

Home Gym


Warm Up

Crossover Symmetry
Reverse Hyper
Hip Hammy Flow

Strict Press



Station 1 - 6 RAM alt rev lunge (44#)
Station 2 - 3 RAM burpee (44#)

This was a good little mover with roughly a 20:40 work rest ratio.

Rogue Monster Lite Half Rack Conversion

I just looked into a half rack conversion and the price is reasonable at $280 until you consider shipping at $82.26 and tax at $27.45 with drives the price to $391.

By comparison, Luke Grant has a has a half rack for sale for $650/$700 in Littleton.  The half rack direct from Rogue runs $765 plus another $75 in shipping and $63.31 for tax = $903.

One of my primary motivations is plate storage which is becoming a problem.  With a half rack I could conveniently store plates.

As of 47 minutes ago, he listed the parts separately.  $260 for the half rack conversion and $450 for the squat rack.  $260 represents 93% of retail, but I am saving a ton of money on shipping and tax and picking up minutes from my house.  It looks like he is pricing at 66% of retail including shipping.  

I think I am going to have to go ahead and pick this up.  As much as I dislike flippers, I do have to be reasonable and let him make his money.  He has over $4000 worth of items listed on Facebook Marketplace and even if he got them for 25-50 cents on the dollar, that is still a large holding cost.

Tom Charles has had a squat stand set on Facebook Marketplace for $325 (70" uprights)

Ben Self sold a Rogue Half Rack 90" front uprights for $625 a couple of weeks ago.

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Run - C&J 2 DB

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

CDOT Fitness Center



2 min walk
12 min @ 5 mph
2 min walk
3 min @ 5 mph
2 min walk

1.25 mile run (12 min/mile)

Lat Pull Down


8 reps.  55/65 was too light, 85 and 105 were good working weights

Rogue Thunder Challenge

Scaled Men - Hold 35# DB in front of you

I managed 6 seconds.  Cowboys hold onto bulls longer!

C&J 2 DB


Wanted to start testing All Round movements when I have access to a full rack of dumbbells.
The rest of my list includes:

C&J DB left/right
C&P DB, heels
C&Seated Press, 2 DB
Curl, Cheat DB, left/right
Press DB, left/right
Snatch 2 DB
Snatch DB left/right

Deka Ram

After an inordinate amount of hemming and hawing, I finally pulled the trigger on a 44 pound ram.  This is a real corner case of functional fitness equipment that I will be using to train for Deka.

They are not horribly expensive at $129, but $44 shipping and $13 tax certainly makes it feel expensive at a to my door cost of $187 (or $4.22/lb).  

Makes me wonder why I am balking at the price of Thompson Fatbells.

Plate Storage Horns

My plates have exceeded my storage and are starting to become a nuisance.  Rather than scale back, I am making an investment in storage.

Rachel Ballard of  Chin-Up Training in Denver listed 3 pairs of weight horns for $50.  This is about 50 cents on the dollar and a pretty good value.  I will be securing old 3x3 posts to the wall and then mounting the horns.  They will unfortunately replace my Deadlift Till I'm Dead poster, but those are the breaks.

Chin-Up Training is a Beginner lifting gym for women, queer and trans people in Denver, CO.  I love their purpose and feel like many gym environments are not friendly enough to new people.  I hope they are successful.

Training Modalities

All Round - ****

Equipment wants - Heavy Lifts, DB handles (2, 2.5, 3), Back Lift, Foot Press, 1" V-Bar

Preparation for - Postals, Dino, Spring Fling, Nationals

Other - Records/Advisory Committee

Highland Games - ***

Equipment Wants - Heavy Hammer, Trig

Preparation for - Scottish Festival, Thornton Celtic Festival

Grip - **

Equipment wants - Implements, grippers, crossbars, Saxon Bar

Preparation for Rolling Hills and King Kong

Obstacle - *

Equipment Wants - NA

Preparation for - Rugged Mania (Lakewood)

CrossFit (HIIT)

Equipment wants - Assault Bike, Tank

Preparation for - CrossFit Open, Deka, Hyrox


Equipment wants - NA

Preparation for - Littlefoot


Equipment wants - NA

Preparation for - GGC, AFA, Lakewood


Equipment Wants - Heavier Limbs, more arrows

Preparation for - ?


Equipment wants - NA

Preparation for ?


Equipment Wants - Dive Watch

Preparation for - NA (Coral Sea, Hobby)

Golf / Disc Golf / Tennis

Equipment wants - Disc Golf bag

Preparation for - NA (Hobby)


Equipment wants - AR, Holster, Sling, Belt, Dry Fire

Preparation for - USPSA, UDPA



Run Clubs
Masters Swim
Tennis Club

Other Sports

Team Sports


Diya - CFA
Nisha - Bodybuilding/Sports
Ratna - Health

Zuver's Hall of Fame

Much has been written about Zuver's Hall of Fame Gym in Costa Mesa, California.  Bob Zuver built the facility stone by stone with the help of his son.  His vision was a "Disneyland" of strength where everything was bigger.  He certainly delivered and the Zuver name will echo through history.

Bob Zuver passed away in 2008.  The gym is no more.

The Original 18' Zuverman is now in Darlington, PA in front of the Brickyard Gym.  Other epic pieces of equipment are coveted to have a connection with the gym and the legendary lifters of the day who graced the halls.

Bob Zuver was an ordained minister and a Navy Frogman.

My motivation for this post is the recent availability of memorabilia and weights that are being offered by Robert Zuver.  He is accepting offers for 100s and those are well outside of my price range.  He was kind enough to respond to my Facebook Message and even offered some other cool items.

The decals are $85 for singles and $160 for the set.  The poster is $175.  

The plates are not fixed price but instead he is taking offers.  Price aside, the steward for the plates should be "Extremely Passionate About the History of Vintage Oldschool Iron.  They will need to keep my Fathers Legacy alive and share their Story to future newcomers."

Robert certainly seems like a friendly guy and I wish him all the best in the quiet life he has established for himself.

Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Grip Training

Monday, January 15, 2024

Basement Gym


Rim Lift (Schisler)


Pinch Grip Deadlift


Little Big Horn


Grip Prep

Sunday, January 14, 2024

Basement Gym


Deadlift - Fingers, Index


Quick 10 minute effort

Run - Swim

Tuesday, January 16, 2024




2 miles (32 laps) on the indoor track.  Finished in 22:27 (11:15/mile) and felt pretty smooth for not having run in a while.


1x500 FR
1x100 BR
1x100 BA
1x300 FR
1000 total in 31 minutes.  Swim felt great today.  The pool was busy with most lanes being shared by two people.

Monday, January 15, 2024

22" Dynamax Atlas Balls

Dynamax is having a great sale on their 22" Atlas Balls.  40% off is a tremendous savings.

30 - $180 - ($108)
50 - $195 - ($117)
75 - $215 - ($129)
100 - $241 - ($145)
150 - $295 - ($177)

The $50 shipping is pretty reasonable as well considering how bulky these are.

$195 to my door for a 100# ball is within the range of what I would expect to pay on the secondary market.

"Roman Chair"

While trying to build out a USAWA competition gym, I came across a reasonably priced Roman Chair that I can hopefully modify to be USAWA compliant.

I like Tuff Stuff equipment, but this is certainly from their economy line and not their commercial line.  

It has a very adjustable foot pad that will work for Abdominal Raise - On Roman Chair, Bench Press Roman Chair, Roman Chair Sit-up and Back Extension.

The only modification required is the seat must be parallel to the ground instead of the current 15 degree angle.  

Square Post 1.772" square
0.4" Bolt hole 2.5" from bottom of tube
Bottom of tube to base of pad ~ 6"
0.11 thick = 11 gauge

I have a few options.  
  • Have a machinist/welder cut the post, clean up and reweld at 90 degrees.  
  • Have a new post and plate fabricated
  • Train at 15 degree angle and compete on parallel bench

Saturday, January 13, 2024

Intek Urethane

I could not help but pop into my local Play It Again Sports and happened upon Intek Armor Series Urethan Olympic Plates.  At $1/pound I bought the pair of 45's and 25's, but left behind the stray 45.

Intek lists these for 

2.5 - $12.50
5 - $24.50
10 - $49
25 - $119
35 - $159
45 - $199
100 - $419

These pair well the (6) 10's I picked up a little over a year ago and I am actually quite pleased to have 200 pounds in Intek plates.  I do not see myself paying retail to fill out the set with a pair of 2.5's and 5's.  I have no interest in the 35's or 100's, but would purchase any and all at $1/pound.

These are actually more comfortable than Iron Grip and have the benefit of being round so they work for deadlifts.

Bench Press - Grip

Saturday, January 13, 2024

Basement Gym


Bench Press


Band Bell



Pinch Grip - Strict


Deadlift - Fulton Bar Ciavattone Gip


60 minute total workout

Friday, January 12, 2024

Dumbbell Handles

Original Thomas Inch - 2-3/8"
USAWA Inch - 2-1/2"
USAWA 3.5"
USAWA Fulton - 1.9"

Nemesis Grips 
  • Fat Dumbbell Handle (Standard Plates) - 2-3/8" with 6" Bolts - Raw Steel - $55
  • Fat Dumbbell Handle - 1.9" (19") - $46
  • Fat Dumbbell Handle - 2.5" - $51
  • Fat Dumbbell Handle - 3.5" - $58
  • Axle Bar - 3" - $168
  • Competition Uprights Set - $77
  • Key Pinch - Coin (Quarter) - $25
  • Lock Collars - $23 Pair
  • Saxon Bar - 3" x 4" - $160
  • Free Shipping orders over $250
1 Canadian Dollar = 0.75 US Dollar

2x1.9" Handle (request 24", black) - $92
2x2.5" Handle (request 24", red) - $102
Lock Collars (gold/copper) - $23
Total - $217 ($289 Canadian - Free Shipping?)

Arm Assassin
  • Heavy Lift Bar - $140
  • Hand/Thigh Lift Bar - $70
  • Dumbbell - 2" (24") - $45
  • Dumbbell - 3.5" - $50
  • Vertical Bar - 1" Handle - $25
  • Vertical Bar - $30
  • Saxon Bar - 3" x 4" - $150
  • Competition Uprights - $50 ($70 with knock bar)

  • Fat Dumbbell Handle (Standard Plates) - $80 + $17 bolts
  • 2" DB Handle - $115
  • 2.5" DB Handle - $135

USAWA Al Myers
  • Dinnie Handle
  • Fulton DB
  • 3" Bar
  • 2" Vertical Bar
  • Dumbbell Walk
  • Ask Al before making any purchases

42# WOB

As we are back in town after the holidays, I am doing a little Christmas shopping including a 42# WOB from Michael Black.  I reached out on Monday and had the implement in hand on Friday.  His equipment and service are beyond amazing.  The weight was spot on a 42.05 pounds.

I was originally interested in a cylinder, but went with a sphere instead and I am glad that I did.  Looking forward to giving this thing a ride when it warms up.

Highland Games Events:
  • Caber - Difficult to practice on my own
  • Sheaf - Purchased fork and 16# sheaf (Michael Black, Aug 2023, $220)
  • Stone - Weighed out a couple of stones from the yard
  • Weight for Height - Purchased 42# (Michael Black, Jan 2024, $200)
  • Hammer - Purchased 16# (Michael Black, Feb 2023, $90); Need 22# & blades?
  • Weight for Distance - Purchased 28# (Michael Black, Feb 2023, $115); 42# (Michael Black, Jan 2024)
Sport Kilt (June 2023, $120)

Running Total = $250+$220+$200+$120 = $790

Hammer blades would cost $45 and a 22# Hammer would be $90 should I choose to invest in those this season or at the end of the season.  There is a lot of work I need to do right now with the equipment I have.  Considering some of my other hobbies, being fully outfitted for under $1000 is a pretty good deal.

It would be nice to have a set of standards, but the set up, transport and tear down is a bit of a production.

I also participated in a thrower's clinic in Brighton (April 2023, $50) and several practice sessions in Arvada and Colorado Springs.

What's in the Bag
  • Bag or Rolling Tool Box - Paint Ball Bag (35L/75L)?
  • Cleats, Javelin boots, Hammer Blades, Turf Shoes
  • Gloves
  • Chalk
  • Tape
  • Tacky
  • Towel
  • Poncho
  • Umbrella
  • Multitool/Pliers
  • Wrist Wraps
  • Weightlifting Belt
  • Knee Sleeves
  • Hammer Boots
  • Sunscreen
  • Supplements, Food, Drink
  • Hoodie
  • Hand Cleaner/Goo-Gone
  • Extra socks, Extra shirt, Hat, Sunglasses


Friday, January 12, 2024

Basement Gym



4 Rounds for time of:
500 meter ski erg
20 abmat sit-ups
20 alt db snatch (25#)

Adapted from Vintage CrossFit which called for 400 meter runs, T2B and 50# alt DB snatch.  I moved well and finished in 20:33 which was better than I expected.  I was very pleased that all of the movements were unbroken.

USAWA Plans for 2024

  • Q2-Q4 postal events 
  • [$25 membership]
  • Q1-Q4 postal events
  • National Championship
  • Colorado Records Day
  • IAWA world postal
  • Took written test and two video practical tests towards officials certification 
  • Started helping with Records Management
  • Joined Advisory Committee
  • [$25 membership; $40 National Championship; $500 travel to Columbia, MO]
  • TBD - planning 
  • Q1-Q4 postal event
  • National Championship
  • Grip Championship at Dino Gym
  • Host Colorado Spring Fling and possibly a fall event
  • Buffville will have to wait until 2025
  • Finish practical certification
  • Establish High Country Vigour and start hosting events
  • Get Nisha and Diya involved 
  • [$25 membership, $30 club membership, $30 Spring Fling sanction, National Championship + travel, Grip Championship + travel, fall competition?]
Long term vision to be involved in USAWA for at least 5 years, establish club to compete in hybrid meets, postal meets and Colorado events, take a leadership role with USAWA and try to visit Frank's, Clark's, Dino Gym, Buffville, Habecker's Gym, KC Strongman, I.A.W.A. (UK), All-Round Weightlifting Australia, support new clubs and competitors.

USAWA has recently had around 100 members primarily in and around Kansas City, Walpole, Mass. and Lebanon, PA.  There has recently been a nice uptick in Kentucky and Tennessee.  Colorado has had several athletes over the years including Rex, RJ, Dan W, Jarrod, Kim V, and Crystal.  There have been a few record days held out here.  While I am not the best individual to grow the sport, I can at least serve as a foothold for interested athletes.

USAWA Club Build Out

The Lifts and Equipment Required
  • 219 - lifts contested
  • 161 - no special equipment required (basic bars/plates/dumbbells/risers)
  • 14 - Fulton Barbell
  • 10 - Ring (finger lifts)
  • 8 - Heavy Lift Bar
  • 4 - 2" vertical bar - vertical lifts and Thor's Hammer
  • 4 - "Roman Chair" - Sit-up, bench, abdominal raise, back extension
  • 3 - Fulton Dumbbell - deadlifts
  • 3 - 1" vertical bar - vertical lifts
  • 3 - Inch Dumbbell - deadlifts
  • 1 - Weaver Stick
  • 1 - Saxon Plank
  • 2 - Apparatus - Foot Press, Back Lift
  • 1 - 3 inch barbell without knurling
  • 1 - Trap Bar
  • 1 - Dinnie Handles
  • 1 - 3.5" Dumbbell - Dumbbell Walk
  • 1 - Short bar for Rim Lift
Over 25% require some specialty equipment.

Heavy Lift Bar (with accoutrements)
  • Carter Lift - Hip Belt (Records Only)
  • Deanna Lift - Hand and Thigh (Deanna Springs Memorial Meet)
  • Hand and Thigh - Hand and Thigh (Popular)**
  • Harness Lift - Harness and Hand Rails (Popular)
  • Hip Lift - Hip Belt (Popular)**
  • Neck Lift - Neck Harness (Popular)
  • Phumchaona Lift - Hip Belt (Records Only)
  • Travis Lift - Special connection to belt (last contested 2006 Dino Gym Challenge)
Teeth Bit


Theory Behind Equipment

Fulton Bar Lift - Homage to grip, easily sourced

Ring Lifts - Odd, but easily sourced

Heavy Bar Lifts - Quite popular and people love to see what they can put up.  These are difficult to source and require an array of belts/harnesses to compete with

Vertical bar lifts - Certainly an homage to grip.  Thor's Hammers was a new lift as of 2014.

Roman Chair lifts - Odd as USAWA has unique requirements for the chair.  Specifically the flat surface.
  • Abdominal Raise - well contested
  • Back Extension - (9) male (Myers, Songster, Ross) and (0) female records
  • Bench Press, Roman Chair - well contested by men, (1) female record
  • Roman Chair Sit-up - (20) male, (0) female record
Dumbbell Variations 
  • Fulton Dumbbell - Minimum diameter 1.9 inches
  • Inch Dumbbell - 2.5" diameter
  • Dumbbell Walk - 3.5" diameter
Weaver Stick - Kind of weird, but easily homemade

Saxon Plank - 3" thick wooden plank with way to secure plates, typically homemade for Saxon Snatch

Apparatus - Back Lift (recently contested at Buffville), Foot Press (any Commercial Vertical Leg Press should suffice)

Barbell Variations
  • 3 Inch Barbell without knurling - Deadlift - Clark's, Frank's, Dino Gym
  • Trap Bar - Deadlift - very popular
Dinnie Handles - Dinnie Lift

Custom Short Bar - Rim Lift


High Country Vigour (HCV)

HCV has made a very good start, but is a far cry from a club capable of hosting all lifts.
  • Basic Equipment - YES - Would need some calibrated 55's for heavy bar lifts
  • Fulton Bar - YES - Generic
  • Ring for Finger Lifts - YES - Michael Black
  • Heavy Bar Lifts - NO - Phased Plan below
    • Hip Belt - Hip Lift, Carter Lift, Phumchaona Lift
    • Hand & Thigh - Hand & Thigh, Deanna Lift
    • Harness - Harness Lift
    • Neck Harness - Neck Lift
    • Travis Lift Attachment - Travis Lift
  • Vertical Bar Lifts - YES - 2" Generic Sleeves and 1" FBBC v-bars
  • Roman Chair - NO - Need to design or modify exiting
  • Dumbbells - YES - Fulton and Inch from Nemesis, 3.5 inch TBD
  • Weaver Stick - NO - Have broom handle, need to fabricate
  • Saxon Plank - NO - Lower priority, may purchase a metal one from Sorinex
  • Commercial Vertical Leg Press - NO - I do not have the space for this
  • 3" Barbell - NO - Could purchase from Titan Fitness for $120
  • Dinnie Handles - YES - Cerberus
  • Custom Short Bar for Rim Lift - YES - Works with stubby axle bar, Dino Gym has 20" spacing on an axle
  • As it stands, HCV could contest 200 of 219 lifts.  
  • Heavy Lift Bar, Hand & Thigh & Hip Belt 205 of 219 ($300)
  • Neck Harness, Travis Lift attachment 207 of 219 ($150)
  • Roman Chair, Back Extension 211 of 219 ($800)
  • Saxon, Weaver, 3" Bar, 3.5" DB, Trap Bar 216 of 219 ($500)
  • Harness, Hand rails 217 of 219 ($500)
  • Vertical Leg Press 219 of 219 ($2000)
The Heavy Lift Bar with accoutrements 
  • PHASE 1 ($306):  Arm Assassin Heavy Lift Bar ($140), Hand & Thigh Bar ($70), Titan Support Systems Dip Belt ($96).  $$*
  • PHASE 2 ($100):  Custom Neck Harness.  Leather, Rivets, Delta Ring, Chain, Slip Hook $***
  • PHASE 3 ($60):  Travis Lift Belt attachment - Rogue Dip Accessory Straps (2 x $30) $*
  • PHASE 4 ($400):  Harness for Harness Lift and Hand Rails - Leather, Rivets, Delta Ring, Chain, Slip Hook, Custom Fabricated Hand Rails $$$***
  • Calibrated Plates as required (Current 1000# set-up; $1,700 for 1500#, $4000 for 2,000#) $$$*
The Roman Chair intrigues me.  While only used for (4) lifts, it does not take up that much space.  I will likely acquire a commercial Roman Chair and modify the pad so it meets the USAWA requirements. $$$***

Making a Saxon Plank will be harder requiring a 3" wood plank, plate holders and a means of securing them. $$, ***

Making a Weaver Stick should be easy. $,**

3" barbell ($130-$250) and 3.5" dumbbell ($60-$90) do not interest me.  I do not care for the Trap Bar ($100-$200) either.  3" barbell available from a variety of sources.  3.5" dumbbell handles are uncommon but currently being offered by Arm Assassin and Nemesis Grips.  Trap bars are often found in commercial gyms. $$*

Back Lift/Foot Press apparatus are not likely for a completely different reason, space..  These could be fashioned from a commercial vertical leg press, but they take up a lot of real estate, especially in a home gym. $$$$**

A Custom Short Bar is a bit of a mystery on cost.  I am envisioning an 18" collar to collar distance with 12" of loadable sleeve length for an overall length of 42".  Either a 1.96" sleeve or a 1.9" Axle Bar.  A custom axle should be on the order of the cost of a 60" short axle under $100. I CAN CONTEST THIS LIFT ON A STUBBY AXLE BAR. $$**

$ - low cost, $$ - mid, $$$ - high, $$$$ prohibitive
* - buy easily, **fabricate easily, ***fabricate hard, ****fabricate prohibitive


Theoretical Build Cost
  • $3000 Basic Gym - Standard length barbells, fixed/loadable dumbbells, plates, rack, benches, means of elevating barbell; available at most commercial gyms
  • $3000 (20) 100 pound plates to contest heavy lifts
  • $1500 Commercial Vertical Leg Press (2000 pound capacity); uncommon
  • $1000 Heavy Lift Bar, Hand and Thigh Bar and Harnesses; requires some skill and craftsmanship
  • $500 Roman Chair; custom fabricated
  • $600 Fulton Bar, Trap Bar; Short Rim Lift bar commercially available
  • $200 3 Inch Bar without knurling
  • $300 Vertical Bars (1" and 2"); commercially available
  • $200 Dinnie Training Set; commercially available
  • $200 Inch Dumbbells (loadable); commercially available
  • $150 Fulton Dumbbells (loadable); commercially available
  • $100 3.5 Inch Dumbbell (loadable); commercially available
  • $100 Saxon Plank - homemade
  • $30 Ring for finger lift; commercially available
  • $0 Weaver Stick; homemade
  • ---
  • $10,880 (or around $11K)
Hip Belt Design

Belt, D-rings, Grab Hook, Chain, Steel Quick Link