It’s certainly no secret that a barbell is an essential piece of equipment for anyone who is serious about strength training. In fact, no strength training program is complete without a barbell, as it’s the most versatile and robust piece of gear for strength training. You can, of course, purchase barbells online or in a store, but the ones available on the market tend to be quite expensive, and they may not fit your specific needs. Hence, many individuals choose to make their barbells. This article will help you learn the process of crafting your very own barbell.
Tools and Materials Required:
Before we get started, gather these tools and materials:
- 2x 20kg weight plates
- Two 1″ galvanized steel threaded rods (6 ft long each)
- 8 nuts
- 8 washers
- Teflon tape
- Wrenches (two for nuts and one for pipe thread)
- Painter’s tape
- Spray paint
- Cutting implement/ vice
Step-by-Step Guide to Create Your Own Barbell:
Step 1: Choosing the Weight Plates:
The weight of the plates is crucial when making your barbell as it affects your lifting experience. So it’s essential to take the time to consider what type of plates you’ll use when making your barbell. We recommend choosing 20kg weight plates as they’re usually the ones used in gyms, and therefore, most barbells are designed for these plates. You can purchase these plates in any functional fitness location, including online stores.
Step 2: Preparing the Threaded Rods:
Once you have your weight plates, it’s time to prepare the threaded rods. First, measure the length of your rod – it should measure six feet long. Next, wrap it with a few layers of Teflon tape to prevent the plates from coming loose during lifting. Screw the nuts onto either end of each threaded rod and add a washer to each end of the bolts. Make sure each washer is placed close to the nut, effectively sandwiching the weight plates in place. Tighten the nuts as much as possible with two wrenches to secure the washer and weight plate.
Step 3: Securing the Plates:
Place painter’s tape on the outside of the weight plates to protect their finish. Once that’s done, screw the bar through one weight plate hole and onto the other plates. Add a washer and another nut at the end. Again, make sure the nut is tightened to keep the plates in place. Repeat the process to create the second threaded rod.
Step 4: Finishing Touches:
Finally, it’s time for some finishing touches. Spray paint your barbell; you can choose the color of your preference. Doing this will protect your barbell from rust and scratches that can occur during exercises. Wait for the paint to dry and voila! Your barbell is ready to use.
Benefits of Crafting Your Own Barbell:
Creating your barbell can be beneficial in several ways. You can save money, as commercial barbells tend to be expensive. Moreover, it allows you to customize your lifting preference by using a particular bar thickness and plate size. When making your barbell, you gain the satisfaction of creating something from scratch, which can keep you motivated during your workouts.
What to Consider When Crafting Your Barbell:
The weight of the plates can be crucial in achieving specific goals. If you’re focusing on strength building, purchasing heavier plates may be recommended. If you’re working on conditioning, lighter plates can be a good choice.
The length of your barbell depends on your preference and workout area. If you have limited space, shorter barbells can be an excellent option. However, we recommend a 6ft length barbell for most strength training, as it allows you to do a wide range of exercises.
The thickness of your bar can affect your lifting experience. A thicker bar can be harder to grip, working your forearm muscle harder. On the other hand, a thinner bar can be easier to grip but may not provide you with the challenge you’re looking for.
Tips for Safe and Effective Barbell Crafting:
Be Careful While Handling the Weight Plates:
Weight plates can be cumbersome and dangerous to handle. Be sure to grab securely and use caution when attaching them to the barbell.
Beware of Over Tightening:
Over-tightening the nuts can intentionally damage the thread or unintentionally strip the plates’ holes. So, be careful not to overdo it.
Take Safety Precautions:
Remember, the barbell is for lifting heavyweights, posing a potential injury risk. Be sure to do proper warm-ups before lifting, use collars to prevent the weightplates from falling off, and use appropriate exercises.
Creating your barbell from scratch can be an excellent way to personalize your strength training workout. By using the guidelines outlined in this article, you’ll be able to create a barbell tailored to your specific needs. Moreover, it’s essential to prioritize safety when using barbells while working out. When you’re safely and effectively crafting and utilizing your barbell, you’ll undoubtedly reap the benefits of a better workout.
Common Barbell Crafting Questions
- Q: What materials do I need to make a barbell?
- A: You will need weight plates, two iron bars (threaded), nuts, washers, teflon tape, wrenches, painter’s tape, and spray paint.
- Q: Can I use varying plate sizes when crafting a barbell?
- A: Yes, you can use varying plate sizes to craft a barbell. However, it’s best to choose plates that match your personal lifting goals and habits.
- Q: How can I ensure my homemade barbell is safe?
- A: Take safety precautions such as proper warm-ups, proper handling and attachment of weight plates, and utilizing appropriate exercises.
- Q: Can I save money by making my barbell?
- A: Absolutely. Making a barbell yourself can save you a significant amount of money compared to buying one.
- Q: How can I know the thickness of a barbell is right for me?
- A: It’s a personal preference. However, it’s essential to try different thickness before digging in one particular thickness to ensure challenging yet safe lifting.
1. Mentore, D. (2014). Making Your Own Barbell. Retrieved from: https://www.t-nation.com/training/making-your-own-barbell
2. Kravitz, L. (2012). Safety Tips for Weightlifting. ACE-PRO. Retrieved from: https://www.acefitness.org/education-and-resources/professional/expert-articles/3758/safety-tips-for-weightlifting/