Rogue R3 Power Rack Review
Working out at home has its obvious benefits; no commuting, no waiting for gear and no hefty monthly gym fees. One glaring downside, however, is that there’s usually a scarcity of spotters, especially if you’re a lone wolf trainer. It was in the wake of a rather nasty squat fail that I decided it was time to stop dicing with my life and invest in the ultimate in spotting safety - a power rack.
My power rack quest led me directly to the mecca of home fitness equipment, Rogue Fitness. From there it didn’t take me long to discover the Rogue R3. Now, I’m squatting (not to mention benching, deadlifting, rowing and curling) in blissful safety. You see, all of the barbell movements that you can dream up can be done in the power rack in total safety, by yourself, without a spotter. So let’s check out what Rogue offer here with our definitive Rogue R3 review.
Things to Consider When Buying A Power Rack
Power Racks are all about heavy lifting and safety. They will allow you to train like an animal without risking life and limb. It is imperative, therefore, that the device that you bring into your home gym is able to perform under the heavy iron. Here are the basic parameters of a good home power rack:
- Rigidity - the rack should be solid, constructed of high grade steel and feature a minimum of plastic.
- Hole Spacing - The hole spacing is critical. A generous number of spaces (one inch or less apart) will allow you to adjust the safety pins and the j-hooks exactly where you need them. You’ll then be able able to customize the height settings for the power rack. If the hole spacings are too wide, you won’t get the right setting.
- Weight Capacity - A maximum load of 1,000 pounds (455 kg) should be your standard. The rack should also feature several bars for plate storage.
- J-Hooks - These are the hooks that the bar sits on. A rack that comes with a second pair of J-hooks is a very handy thing indeed.
- Minimum Width - The width of power racks can vary enormously. Obviously the standard width of a barbell doesn’t change, but, unless you check the width before purchase, you could be left high and dry when you want to throw a bench in the middle of the rack for bench pressing. You might also want to use dumbbells inside the rack, so make sure that you’ve got enough room to drop them.
The Rogue R3 claims to be the serious lifter’s power rack solution. It’s design was inspired by the crew at Westside Barbell, renowned for producing some of the strongest lifters on the planet.
Just check out the product specs below:
- Made with 2” X 3” 11 Gauge Steel
- 5/8” Bolts and Fasteners
- West Side Hole Pattern – 1” through bench and clean pull zone then 2” spacing above and below
- Unique 1.25” and 2” Pull-up bar at 7’ 6” Height (Shorty version is 7')
- (2) Infinity J-Cups, (2) Pin/Pipe Safeties, (4) Band Pegs
The Rogue has a ton of optional extras that can be attached to the rack to provide even greater workout options. These include a lat pulldown bar and dip station.
Pros and Cons
- Ease of assembly. Four bolts and you are done!
- Simple safety adjustment.
- Sturdiness. You’ll be able to do pull ups, dips and heavy weight lifts in absolute safety.
- Two Pull Up Bars; normal and extra thick to allow you to strengthen your forearms.
- Height. At 7’6” you’ll have plenty of room to do overhead lifts.
- The safety bars holes are not numbered. This makes it a little tricky to match the height of the bar on each side when adjusting the safety bars.
- The gap between holes varies from two inches up high to one inch down low. A uniform height of one inch would have given more adjustment options.
- The R3 does need to be bolted down in order to provide maximum stability and rigidity.
Features and Benefits
Assembly: The Rogue R3 has a simple assembly based around 4 key bolt positions. Two bolts on each side connect to pull up bar across the top of the machine. You will be able to bolt this unit together and be ready to lift in ten minutes flat!
Simple Safety Bar Adjustment: Simply slide the pin out, life the bar and push the pin back through the holes. Holes are set at two inches apart for squatting and one inch apart for benching. This allow you to adjust the safety bar very quickly so you don’t lose time between working sets. The proximity of holes also means that you have a whole lot of variety when it comes to adjustment of the safety pins to accommodate your bodily dimensions.
Laser Cutting: Many manufacturers will drill their safety bar holes. Rogue laser cut them. So what? The laser precision means that they line up perfectly, time after time. If you’ve ever been on a lesser machine that has alignment issues, then you know what a difference that makes!
Pull Up Bars: The Rogue R3 features two pull up bars; a standard grip and a two inch grip bar. This allow for variation of grip strength as well as for specialised forearm strength training.
Band Pegs: The unit comes with a set of four band pegs to allow you to perform band resistance lifts. This offers a proven intensity enhancing technique to allow you to get more results from your workouts.
Rogue R3 vs R4
The Rogue R4 Power Rack is a quality rack that has been serving heavy lifters for many years. The big difference with the R3 is that it retains all of the same great features of the R4 while taking up a much smaller footprint. This makes the R3 an extremely attractive option for those with limited home gym space. Downsizing to an R3 will see you freeing up dozens of square feet of space in your garage or other home workout venue.
Those people who already have an R4 don’t have to ditch their rack and make a whole new purchase. Rogue allow you to purchase some simple accessories that will convert your R4 into an R3. In fact, all you need is a couple of R3 24” cross members and the job is done.
The Rogue R3 Power Rack is available through the Rogue Fitness website for $695.00. Rogue offer free shipping on this product. . .
The home gym market is a thriving industry, so it should come as no surprise that there’s no shortage of offerings on the cornerstone piece of any decent home gym, the power rack. We’ve done the research and come up with the top 3 alternatives to the R3 from Rogue. so, let’s check out the competition.
Legend 3133 Power Rack - Featuring 3 inch, 11 gauge tubing, and 7 gauge chrome off-set racking, laser cut numbering along the safety holes and a rigid, et simple design, the Legend 3133 is one formidable work horse. With only two bolts to the entire structure, this unit is incredibly durable. The base of the rack features a standard bench docking system for when you load a bench into the unit to centrally locate and secure the bench in position. Resistance band pegs can be found on the top and bottom of the rack. 5 welded olympic plate storage pegs are provided on each side of the rack. There’s even vertical bar storage at the back of the unit.The Legend 3133 Power Rack is available online for $1299.00 from the Iron Company.
Barbarian Line Power Rack - This is a basic heavy duty rack made from 3 x 3 inch box section. Bolted cross sections are 3 x 2 inch. It has extra long j-pegs to allow for ease of unracking of the bar. It features a monkey bar chin up bar and an optional lat pull-down attachment. The cross sectional safety pins have a polyurethane coating to save the life of your lifting bar. Detachable dipping handles offer an extra bodyweight option. A unique but nifty feature is a deadlift station at eh front of the unit. This is ideal for loading and unloading plates. Also, the rear cross-beam is set back from the uprights, meaning that you won’t be kicking your feet against it when you go to unrack the bar.The Barbarian Line Power Rack is available for $1110.
Powerline PPX200X Power Rack - This is a surprisingly solid and durable power cage for the price. There is absolutely no rocking down at the base of the unit. The Rack can handle 500 pounds without any problems. There’s no dip attachment with this unit. There are no numbers printed on the spotter bar holes. the hole spacing is 3 inch, which is kind of wide. This can make bench pressing, in particular, a problem. To overcome this issue, you can place a bit of timber under the bench. An inconvenience, but not a reason not to purchase at this price point. See the rack here
A power rack needs to form the corner-stone of any home gym worthy of it’s name. A good power rack provides the user with peace of mind when training and that is worth its weight in gold. Knowing that you have a fail safe system to catch you when you fall will allow you to push beyond your barriers with absolute confidence.
The R3 Power Rack from Rogue is a top of the line offering that provides for a safe, sturdy weight training experience. The laser precision and seamless welding that has gone into its production not only looks great but provides you with a hassle free experience, especially when changing the position of the safety pins. The addition of pin hole numbering would have been nice, but is not a deal breaker.
If you’re looking for a quality power rack that will last the distance without hogging your floor space, you couldn’t do much better than the Rogue Fitness R3 Power Rack.Click here to read our review for other best power racks available on the market today.