Rogue HR-2 Half Rack
The Rogue HR-2 Half Rack is a relatively low-priced alternative to Rogue’s larger racks like the Monster Lite and the RML-390 and RML-690. Although any Rogue rack can form the center of a home gym, the ones with larger footprints are better suited to a commercial gym that has more space and higher ceilings.
Rogue’s unique naming conventions are a source of confusion, especially if you are not used to them. We are reviewing the HR-2 Half Rack as a standalone rack that meets all your lifting needs. But you can also purchase an HR-2 conversion kit, consisting of framing and hardware, that will convert a Monster series rack into a half rack. When you consider that Rogue racks are always a letter or series of letters followed by a number and that many rack names share letters, the array of racks and options becomes even more overwhelming.
We want you to research, purchase, and lift with confidence, no matter what your rack and stand needs are. So let’s take a deep dive into the compact but sturdy Rogue HR-2 half-rack, to see what it can do for you on its own or as a conversion kit.
Westside hole spacing lets you dial in your start position for barbell lifts
49” by 48” inch footprint leaves ample working space
Features of a power rack in a compact, stand-like package
92” uprights won’t scrape most ceilings
Compatible with both Monster Lite and Infinity series Rogue racks
Height options for both front and back uprights
Does not need to be floor bolted
Space for only one pullup bar
Pin/pipe safeties cost more
A Word on Conversion Kits
Upgrading from a stand to a half-rack is beneficial because you can lift heavier weight, add more accessories, and do unassisted heavy squats with safety spotter arms. Also, with a converted half-rack, you can get Rogue’s Matador dip attachment which lets you do bodyweight or belted plate dips from any height. But you’ll notice we said “certain” Rogue racks. The HR-2 kit is only compatible with Monster Lite squat stands, which are one of several lines that Rogue offers. It’s up to you to decide if you want to start with a stand and later upgrade, or if you’d rather just make the upfront investment and get the HR-2 half rack to start.
Those safety features include both safety spotter arms and pin and pipe safeties.
The arms are a large pair of contoured steel platforms, similar to jack stands in a commercial garage, that mount to the uprights at floor level. If you unrack a loaded barbell and find you can’t finish the squat, all you have to do is let the bar fall. The spotter arms will stop it from rolling or damaging your concrete floor, and if there’s drywall nearby, it won’t be getting extra holes from the bar and plates hitting it.
Pin and pipe safeties are a precaution you should take during heavy bench presses. We always recommend using a human spotter, but the pin and pipes are the next best thing, enabling you to bench press alone. They are steel rods that mount between the uprights using solid quick-release levers. If you can’t finish a bench press, the pin and pipe assemblies catch the bar and prevent damage to you or your rack. Rogue racks are coated to resist corrosion and denting, but we still wouldn’t put one up against a loaded barbell with gravity on its side.
If something does go wrong with your rack, or if you have further questions, Rogue has a top-notch customer service department that is only a phone call or website chat window away. And all Rogue’s racks come with a full warranty for parts. You can build your strength in comfort and privacy, knowing that the HR-2 will give you consistent reliability over time. Rogue’s hard work on the design end means less downtime for you, helping you use the rack consistently.
Ease of Use
With the purchase of a few upgrades, the HR-2 becomes even easier and more convenient to use. The 17” horizontal cross members, on back of the unit, means you can add plate storage to keep all your plates handy and accessible. Having height options lets you customize the rack and uprights to your body type, range of motion, and gym space. The pull-up bar is the standard skinny 1.25-inch bar, not the specialty 2” fat bar that enhances grip. The bar will be easier for most athletes to use, including those of us with smaller hands, and the bar is made of smooth rolled steel so it will not tear up your skin.
The HR-2’s ease of use means you can put all your sweat and labor into getting the most intense lifting sessions you want to, without worrying about equipment failure or making multiple on-the-fly adjustments.
You get a pair of Rogue’s proprietary J-Cup bar holders, at no extra cost, as part of the base package. They plug into the upright holes to hold barbells in place. Rogue J-Cups feature a thick plastic top piece to protect the finish or grip texture of a barbell. Using J-Cups made by competitors is not recommended and could affect your warranty.