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Barbell Buying guide


The Olympic Barbell is arguably the most important piece of equipment for strength training. Our extensive range can be overwhelming, which is why we have made this guide to help you find the right bar for your needs. Below you will find recommendations based on the type of lifter you are and then a table containing the specification for our full range of standard barbells.

Please see our Refund Policy page for full warranty information and important information regarding looking after your barbell.

All Strength Shop barbells have 2" (50mm) sleeves for olympic plates.

Beginners

New to strength training? Consider our Original 2028 Bar. It is the most cost effective option for learning compound lifts and rated to lifts upto 250kg - but note its straight steel shaft is not suitable for Olympic Weightlifting (Clean & Jerk and Snatch). A standard 20kg bar weight, 28mm shaft and 2.2m length means this is a great bar to learn the basics on.

For Women we offer the Original 1525 Women's Bar, featuring a thinner 25mm shaft and rated to 150kg for static lifts and 90kg for Olympic lifts.

Powerlifters

Our Original 2029 bar is the most cost effective option for entry level powerlifters. Rated to powerlifts upto 260kg, the 29mm shaft will be similar to the thickness of bars found in competition. If you have the extra budget or plan on lifting upto 340kg Deadlift or 300kg Squat, we highly recommend upgrading to the Bastard Power Bar - featuring bronze bushings in the sleeves we use bronze as it has a higher durability and greater resistance to corrosion than other alloys/traditional brass bushings and has been used in heavy machinery for decades because of its longevity. If it's going to hold up in the high pressure, heavy use, infinite rotations of industrial machinery, we are confident that it will hold up to as many heavy squats, presses, and deadlifts as you and and your training partners can handle., sprung steel shaft and 3 year performance warranty - this high quality bar is built to last heavy lift after heavy lift, and tested by high level powerlifters. If you plan on going heavier, we also offer the official UK seller of the renowned Texas Power Bar by Buddy Capps - this will take any weight on a powerlift, and it's quality precedes it.

We also sell specialist bars for Deadlift and Squat. If the federation you compete in uses specialist squat and deadlift bars, you should add them to your collection to train on the bar you will be competing on (or as similar to it as possible). The Bastard Deadlift Bar has a 27mm sprung steel shaft, and is 10cm longer than our other power bars. The thinner shaft means the bar flexes much more before breaking off the ground. Rated to an awesome 450kg - if you need more than this then choose the Texas Deadlift Bar.

For a specialist squat bar we have the 25kg Bastard Squat Bar featuring a very rigid 32mm shaft with very little flex - it is the longest barbell at 2.47mm to allow extra space for hand spacing and loading more plates! It is rated to 450kg!

Olympic Weightlifters

For Clean & Jerk and Snatch upto 120kg, we highly recommend our famous Bastard Bar. It is our flagship bar which can also be used for upto 250kg on Squat and Deadlift, so is also a great all rounder. For female lifters we highly recommend the Women's Bastard Weightlifting Bar, which features a thinner 25mm shaft and shorter 2.03m length.

Strongman

Although this guide is only for standard olympic barbells, for strongmen we have a large range of speciality bars, ranging from Steel Logs, Thick Bar Axles, Hex/Trap Bars, Cambered Bars, Spider Bars, Bow Bars and Safety Squat Bars. Check out the full range by clicking here. For heavy Squats and Deadlifts please see the Powerlifting section above.

Functional Training

For cross training and circuit style training which involves both power and olympic movements, no bar is better than the Bastard Bar. The ultimate hybrid bar with dual ring markings - it's suitable up to 120kg on Clean & Jerk and Snatch, and 250kg for Squat and Deadlift.

Gym Owners

We have kitted out hundreds of gyms. For a commercial environment we do not recommend any of our straight steel bars (The Original Range). The Bastard, Riot and Texas ranges are what you are looking for. The standard Bastard Bars are great all round bars for general stations.

For power areas we recommend the Bastard Power Bar range or Texas Bar Range. For Powerlifting clubs and gyms, consider the specialist Bastard Power Bar, Bastard Deadlift Bar and Bastard Squat Bars or their Texas counterparts. If you specialise in Olympic Weightlifting consider the Bastard Weightlifting Bar for a truly high quality bar that will last.

If you need further help choosing your barbell, please contact us by clicking here! We'll be happy to help.

Barbell Specification

Original 2028 Bar

Weight 20kg
Length 2.2m
Shaft Straight Steel
Shaft Diameter 28mm
Distance Between Rings 810mm
Loadable sleeve length 405mm
Centre Knurling? Yes
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Steel Bushings and Needle Bearings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 250kg max suggested load. Not suitable for Olympic Weightlifting. 700lbs steel tensile rating
Warranty Standard 6 month

Bastard Bar
Options:
With or Without Centre Knurling
Silver or Black Shaft
Dual Rings or Single Ring

Weight 20kg
Length 2.2m
Shaft Sprung Steel
Shaft Diameter 28mm
Distance Between Rings 810mm and 910mm (Bastard Weightlifting Bar is 910mm rings only)
Loadable sleeve length 410mm
Centre Knurling? Available with or without
Knurling Type Medium
Sleeve Type Needle Bearings, Brass Bushings & Ball Bearings
Max Load/Rating 1500lbs static rating, 205K PSI Tensile strength. Max suggested load - 120kg for Clean & Jerk / Snatch, 250kg for Squat/Deadlift
Warranty 3 Year Performance Warranty

Original 2029 Bar

Length 2.2m
Shaft Straight Steel
Shaft Diameter 29mm
Distance Between Rings 810mm
Loadable sleeve length 405mm
Centre Knurling? Yes
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Needle Bearings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 185K PSI Tensile Strength. 260kg max suggested load. Not suitable for Olympic Weightlifting.
Warranty Standard 6 month

Bastard Power Bar

Options:
Silver or Black Shaft
Weight 20kg
Length 2.2m
Shaft Sprung Steel
Shaft Diameter 29mm
Distance Between Rings 810mm
Loadable sleeve length 415mm
Centre Knurling? Yes
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Brass Bushings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 1500lbs static rating, 205K PSI Tensile strength. Max suggested load - 340kg Deadlift, 300kg Squat
Warranty 3 Year Performance Warranty

Bastard Squat Bar

Weight 25kg
Length 2.47m
Shaft Sprung Steel
Shaft Diameter 32mm
Loadable sleeve length 460mm
Centre Knurling? Fully Knurled
Distance Between Rings 810mm and 430mm
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Brass Bushings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 1500lbs static rating, 205K PSI Tensile strength. Max suggested load - 450kg Squat
Warranty 3 Year Performance Warranty

Bastard Deadlift Bar
Options:
Silver or Black Shaft

Weight 20kg
Length 2.3m
Shaft Sprung Steel
Shaft Diameter 27mm
Distance Between Rings 810mm
Loadable sleeve length 370mm
Centre Knurling? No
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Brass Bushings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 1500lbs static rating, 205K PSI Tensile strength. Max suggested load - 400kg
Warranty 3 Year Performance Warranty

Texas Power Bar

By Buddy Capps
Weight 20kg
Length 2.185m
Shaft Sprung Tempered Steel
Shaft Diameter 29mm
Distance Between Rings 810mm
Loadable sleeve length 370mm
Centre Knurling? Yes
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Brass Bushings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 1500lbs static rating, 186K PSI Tensile strength. No maximum load for Powerlifts - any weight.
Warranty Manufacturers 10 years workmanship and materials warranty under normal use

Texas Deadlift Bar

By Buddy Capps
Weight 20kg
Length 2.3m
Shaft Sprung Tempered Steel
Shaft Diameter 27mm
Distance Between Rings 810mm
Loadable sleeve length 400mm
Centre Knurling? No
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Brass Bushings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 2000lbs Static Rating, 186K PSI Tensile strength. No maximum load for Powerlifts - any weight.
Warranty Manufacturers 10 years workmanship and materials warranty under normal use

Original 1525 Women's Bar

Weight 15kg
Length 2m
Shaft Straight Steel
Shaft Diameter 25mm
Distance Between Rings 880mm
Loadable sleeve length 320mm
Centre Knurling? No
Knurling Type Coarse
Sleeve Type Steel Bushings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 700lbs static rating. Max suggested load - 150kg for slow static lifts, 90kg for Olympic Lifts
Warranty Standard 6 month

Women's Bastard Weightlifting Bar

Weight 15kg
Length 2.03m
Shaft Sprung Steel
Shaft Diameter 25mm
Distance Between Rings 910mm
Loadable sleeve length 327mm
Centre Knurling? No
Knurling Type Medium
Sleeve Type Needle Bearings, Brass Bushings & Ball Bearings
Recommended Max Load/Rating 190K PSI Tensile Strength. 110kg max recommended load for Clean & Jerk / Snatch.
Warranty 3 Year Performance Warranty


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