Atlas Power Rack/ Cage Review

by admin on November 2, 2013

atlasA great investment for squats, deadlifts, presses and more!

If you need something that gets the job done and above all keep you safe while performing squats, military, bench presses, shrugs and more, this is it. This power rack has a deep 26” walk-in design that gives you ample space for a variety of exercises.

Atlas is well known and has an excellent reputation in the health and fitness industry. They put out solid, well-built equipment and in my opinion (and the opinion of hundreds), you can’t go wrong with an Atlas in the house.

Most, if not all beginners often ask me which is the best power rack to start out with. That’s a loaded question in itself, as there are a ton of factors that determines a power rack’s ability. In my opinion, this Atlas power rack is hands down one of the best entry-level cages. With a total of 28 positions on the rack plus a chin up bar, you can pretty much perform any type of exercise without having to go to a commercial gym.

If you are looking for something practical, a great investment for your dollar and at the same time promises safety; continue reading as I cover the pros and cons, along with feedback from the bodybuilding community.

What you should know

  • Front inside opening- 44″
  • Front outside opening- 48″
  • Height- 83″
  • Inside workout space- 26″ from inside front to rear.
  • Floor space- 59″ x 48″
  • Olympic plate storage holders- 9″ to rack
  • Distance floor to center of bottom hole- 12.5″
  • Total weight- 137 Lbs

Things you’ll like

  • Chin up bar- 1 1/4″ diameter with knurling, 80″ high, 44″ wide
  • 1″ round solid steel pins, lock on design
  • 28 holes 2″ apart for adjustment
  • 2” x 2” heavy duty 12 Gauge steel
  • Capacity 700 lbs.
  • Option to add dip bars and attachments

Product Update: Atlas is now shipping chrome plated safety pins as pictured below. In addition, the bar holder will be replaced with commercial standard J-hooks instead of the older version short holders.

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Putting it together

The rack comes with a single sided sheet of directions. No written words, just pictures of the finished product. If you are a handy person familiar with a philips screwdriver, assembling this unit will not be a problem. Having said that, if you’ve got a friend who could use a free meal, get them to hold the vertical beams while you screw the nuts to the base. This will help speed up the process.

Also remember that all 4 beams are NOT identical. The two front beams come with extra holes on the top for the chin-up bar. Make sure to line those up properly before tightening the screws.

The good stuff

Okay, first thing that took me by surprise is the welding and quality of the beams and base. This rack is built with 12-gauge steel and once fully assembled, it feels very solid and extremely sturdy. Most would agree that it’s just as good as the power cages in commercial gyms.

The newly replaced chrome plated safety bars and J-hooks are also solid and feels durable. I’ve read that some have dropped 300-400lbs (max 700lbs) on the pins with no significant dents or scrapes. One user even quoted – I can’t believe how beastly the safety pins are!

A big plus was having a chinup bar as I didn’t want to spend extra on one. The bar is knurled on both ends to give you a better grip. Also, for those averaging 5’5, it has been reported that the bar is low enough to grab without forcing a full jump. As for cage depth and width, I’m 5’10 and must say I ‘fit’ quite nicely inside. It’s spacious enough for a variety of exercises without bumping against the beams. As a sidenote, I notice that when I do pullups, the damn thing hardly budges.

The rack also comes with 2″ hole spacing which is excellent for me when I need to go low on bench presses. Unfortunately there are no markings or numbers, but this can easily be solved with a marker pen or paper tape. Given the overall price and value, I still find it hard to believe that this is in the ‘entry-level’ category.

The not so good stuff
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My only gripe has to do with the weight holders at the back taking up too much space. It’s not a big deal if you have the extra space, but even so, the motion of un-racking weights and reaching to the back is awkward and unnecessary.

Should you buy this?

If you want to invest in a power rack, this is by far one of the better ones available in the market. It’s more than enough for any beginner to train on for the next 5 years. Factor in the unbeatable price and overall add-ons (chrome bars, J-hooks, pullup bar, the option to add attachments, etc) this rack definitely gets my stamp of approval. No wonder reviews over at Amazon are nothing short of 5 stars.

Where can I buy it?

The average price floating around the internet is about $400. You can get them from either Barbells4me or Amazon. Obviously go with the one that gives you the best shipping rate.

Update: Amazon is selling this rack at an unbelievable 35% discount! The new price is only $259 + $99.95 shipping! I’ll say this only once, if you’re shopping around, stop and do yourself a favor. Get this now before it goes out of stock!

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