View Poll Results: Best bench for $1,000?

Voters
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  • Rae Crowther Pro Adjustable Bench

    15 34.88%
  • Sorinex No-Problem Bench

    10 23.26%
  • Legend PRO SERIES Self-Adjusting Three-Way #3222

    2 4.65%
  • Rogue Awesome Bench -2

    4 9.30%
  • EliteFS E-Series 0-90 Incline Bench

    4 9.30%
  • Pendlay Elite 0-90 Adjustable Bench

    3 6.98%
  • Power Lift Benches (Lever Action)

    4 9.30%
  • Texas Strength Systems Flat-Incline-Decline Bench

    1 2.33%
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  1. #1
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    Question [POLL] Best bench for $1,000?

    There’s been much discussion on the forum regarding benches recently and I’ve found it helpful since I’m currently looking to upgrade. Although most of it has been around either entry and mid-level benches or flat benches, I want to focus on higher end, commercial-level utility (0-90) benches in the $1,000 range.

    After voting in the poll, if you wish to contribute further, please answer one or both of the following questions:

    1) If you were given a $1,000 to upgrade and buy a new bench, which bench would you buy *NEW* and WHY? NOTE: kicking in another $500 at most for options etc., or up to $1,500 total is probably fair game.

    2) Which bench do you currently own and why would you choose another bench over it?


    I’ll start:
    1) I’m leaning towards buying the Rae Crowther’s Pro Adjustable Bench with the optional Foot Utility for the following reasons
    a. It looks solidly built (should easily handle the 450 – 500 lbs of total weight (body weight plus barbell weight I’ll be putting on it and 350 – 400 lbs with dumbells)
    b. Back pad is 11” (I sometimes find my wider Powertec back pad restrictive)
    c. Bench is 18” high when in flat position
    d. With the tires and handle, seems easy to adjust and move around despite its weight
    e. I’m looking forward to doing incline sit-ups on it with the bench in decline position. I rarely bench press in decline position so other than the ability to do sit-ups, I’d probably be fine with a 0-90 degree bench.
    f. I get free shipping if I order it with my RC rack (currently being ordered) so it’s a little cheaper than if I order it a month from now

    2) I currently own a Powertec Utility Bench with Leg Extension and Curl Attachments.
    a. Although the bench is stable, at higher weights (combined body and exercise weights over 350 lbs) I find it has a bit of wobble in it which is distracting. And for some reason, I’m always worried that when in flat position, it’s going to give out on me during heavier weights – NOT good when attempting PR’s 
    b. Adjusting the seat part (not the backrest) could be smoother and quicker
    c. I have to be aware of the clothing material I’m wearing on the bench since it seems fairly slippery sometimes
    d. Haven’t used my attachments for a while so they just sit there gathering dust, taking up $$ and space.
    e. Overall, I’ve been happy with this bench although, if I was repurchasing in this price range, I’d probably buy the Ironmaster Superbench. In some ways, the RC Pro Bench is a heavier duty version of the IM Superbench.

    3) I've briefly owned a Body Solid Flat-Incline-Decline Bench
    a. Didn’t really care for it too much, seemed lightly built compared to the Powertec
    b. However, I liked the quicker adjustment of the BS bench from flat to incline

    SOME BENCHES WORTH CONSIDERING

    NOTE: Prices below generally do NOT include tax or shipping costs (please identify and correct any errors).

    Rae Crowther Pro Adjustable Bench
    • $875
    • old Nebula 1084 design
    http://raecrowther.com/product/pro-adjustable-bench/

    Sorinex No-Problem Bench
    • $600
    • it can hold up a pickup truck!
    http://store.sorinex.com/np-bench-p/onw-3.htm

    Legend PRO SERIES Self-Adjusting Three-Way #3222
    • $900
    • Docking system is well regarded (and usually free if you purchase Rack and bench
    http://www.legendfitness.com/product...-way_3222.aspx

    Rogue Awesome Bench -2
    • $815
    • also based on old Nebula 1084 design
    • doesn’t include leg utility option yet (although it is rumored to be in the works).
    http://www.roguefitness.com/ab-2-adjustable-bench.php

    EliteFS E-Series 0-90 Incline Bench
    • $550
    • Same as William`s Strength
    http://www.flexcart.com/members/elit...d=391&pid=3232

    Pendlay Elite 0-90 Adjustable Bench
    • $300 (on sale)
    • Only $300!!
    http://www.pendlay.com/Pendlay-Elite...nch_p_992.html

    Power Lift Benches (Lever Action)
    • I couldn’t readily find recent pricing on this bench, please post if you have pricing info.
    http://www.power-lift.com/benches-powerlift.html

    Texas Strength Systems Flat-Incline-Decline Bench
    • $545
    http://www.texasstrengthsystems.com/...-incline-bench

    Precor Super Bench
    • $1050
    http://www.precor.com/en-us/home/pro...th/super-bench

    Hoist CF-3165 FID
    • $900
    http://www.hoistfitness.com/commerci...-decline-bench

    Life Fitness/Hammer Strength Adjustable Bench (Pro Style)
    • $920
    http://www.lifefitness.com/commercia...hprostyle.html

    Cybex Locking Adjustable Bench
    • $1175
    http://www.cybexintl.com/big-iron-lo...ell-bench.aspx

    So that we don’t repeat ourselves and can hit the ground running, I’ve consolidated some of the recent discussion on benches below (please add *relevant* threads that I may have missed).
    Last edited by MensaTarzan; 09-23-2013 at 06:21 PM. Reason: Added Precor, Hoist, LifeFitness, Cybex
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    Useful Threads for Further Reading

    THREAD: Alternatives to Rogue flat bench

    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...ighlight=bench
    - This thread has a good discussion on Flat vs. FID vs. 0-90 degree benches
    Originally Posted by GarageIron View Post
    I have (or had) and used many of the benches listed above a few others. Here is my quick run down on each.

    Amstaff Bench - It was not the same one as listed above, but the previous model. It was 16" high, frame was decent, pad seemed to be stitched together with some sort of low grade dental floss. It fell apart in 3 months. I sold it for $20.

    Pendlay 0-90 - 17" high, very well constructed. Large pad gap but the top section of pad is as long as many flat benches so its not an issue. Value wise I love this bench. We have put them in 10 of the 17 firehouses at work and will get 6 more. (Mine has a Sorinex NP). Pad is stapled on at the bottom which seems to vary in quality bench to bench. Very slight wobble at incline due to the bolted hinge. Comes in custom colors.

    Rogue Utility Flat Bench - Great firm pad, 18" high. Light and easy to move around. This would be the perfect flat bench IMO if it was 17" high and welded all the way around at the joints. I sold mine because the welding drove me insane.

    Sorinex NP - This is the tank of tanks. 18" high, no wobble. Very heavy. Pad is awesome, minimal gap. This is a very high end bench and seems like the big brother of the Pendlay. Every detail in its construction is spectacular. It also can hold up a truck (literally). My only criticism is the handle to move it around. It is very low and somewhat awkward.

    York STS Flat - Very heavy for a flat (55lb) and built like a tank. The pad is thin at 10" which is good and bad. I liked it at first but now think 12" is best. The pad is a bit soft but doesn't slip and is well made. This bench is made in china although you would never know by looking at it. 19" tall. This is my current bench at home and will be up for adoption shortly.
    THREAD: Choosing a weight bench.
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=157043573
    Originally Posted by rlundregan View Post
    Choosing a bench is really subjective. You should definitely be attentive to weight ratings. Most Weider/Marcy/big box benches are useless because they can only handle around 300 lbs including the user's body weight. THere are some very good home use benches that can handle around 1000 lbs in the flat position, and this capacity is routine for most commercial benches.
    Beyond weight capacity, a lot depends on your preferences. As a general rule of thumb, most guys seem to prefer a bench height of around 17-18 inches in the flat position. Higher than that can make it difficult to plant your feet on the floor comfortably/stable. Some guys like a bench that is a little narrower, and some guys prefer a bench that is wider to support their shoulders.
    You also want to make sure that a bench will work well with your rack. If you have a home use rack that has a rear support on the floor, you may want to consider a flat/incline bench where the seat slides back as you raise the incline (example: Body Solid GFI21). Otherwise, you may have to turn the bench around and do inclines off the front of the rack, which some guys find annoying. Some guys really want a bench that declines so they can do ab crunches and decline bench press. Other guys (like me) prefer to do dips instead of decline presses and find other ab exercises.
    As far as the range of angles, I'm not aware of any bench that comes with more than one decline option. I personally only use a 45 degree angle for incline presses, and an 85 degree angle for shoulder presses, although my bench does have several other angle options.
    Sorry that this isn't helping you with a specific model to buy, the point is that this is a really personal decision.
    THREAD: FID Utility
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=156724093
    Originally Posted by KBKB View Post
    Most benches which accommodate a leg extension attachment will, by necessity, be too high for other purposes. The reason for this is that the the portion of the bench upon which you sit when doing extensions must be high enough to allow clearance for your feet with respect to the floor. And not just for your feet, but for the feet of the longest legged person for whom the bench / attachment is designed.
    If the design allows the seat portion of the bench to be inclined or tilted upward when the attachment is added, then it's possible that the bench may be low enough in the flat position for other purposes too. Note that the Ironmaster Super Bench can be tilted upward to accommodate people with longer legs.
    THREAD: Best Weight Bench on a Budget
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=157028873

    THREAD: Flat Incline Decline (FID) Heavy Duty Bench from Texas Strength Systems Review
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=155193233

    THREAD: Legend look-a-like adjustable bench from Fitness Gear
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=156790843

    THREAD: Hammer strength adjustable bench review
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...2278273&page=1

    THREAD: Review: Williams Strength/Elite FS Signature 0-90 Bench
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...post1063862091
    Last edited by MensaTarzan; 09-23-2013 at 06:26 PM.
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  3. #3
    Registered User GarageIron's Avatar
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    I'm voting for the NP, just because I'm familiar with it. I'll post up some pics of it and my Pendlay 0-90 in a few minutes, hopefully there are some others with these benches that can do the same.

    Is there an Official Bench Thread yet?

    One other bench I've alway been intrigued by is the Precor Icarian Super Bench. Not sure on the specs but for some reason I regularly consider picking one up. I was looking today in fact.
    Last edited by GarageIron; 09-22-2013 at 04:25 PM.
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    Sorinex NP Bench







    Pendlay 0-90









    The Precor that intrigues me...

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    Bored of the Jungle MensaTarzan's Avatar
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    Good choices and solid contribution as always GarageIron, greatly appreciate your personal pictures. Unfortunately I can't rep you any further since I "must spread some reputation around before giving it to GarageIron"
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    I haven't voted in the poll yet. A new bench is also something that I'm also considering in the near future. I currently use an Ironmaster Super Bench which is a bit tall for me. And although it's rock solid in the flat position, it does have some wobble in the incline position. I've owned three of the Ironmaster benches (I flipped two of them) and all three of them have some wobble in the incline position. When considering my next bench purchase, the height and stability of the incline will be very important to me. Are ladder types always more stable in the incline position? Or does it depend mostly on how the bench hinges? ...the tolerances? Or all of the above?

    Originally Posted by GarageIron View Post
    I'm voting for the NP, just because I'm familiar with it. I'll post up some pics of it and my Pendlay 0-90 in a few minutes.

    One other bench I've alway been intrigued by is the Prevor Icarian Super Bench. Not sure on the specs but for some reason I regularly consider picking one up. I was looking today in fact.
    One thing that I find interesting about the Precor Super bench is that it appears to have four pillow bearings at the hinge.

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    Bored of the Jungle MensaTarzan's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by morebarbell View Post
    One thing that I find interesting about the Precor Super bench is that it appears to have four pillow bearings at the hinge.
    Thanks morebarbell, repped. I've added the Precor Super Bench and Link to the initial post, unfortunately I wasn't able to edit the poll and add it there (if anyone knows how to do this, please assist).
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    Love my Hoist

    Love my Hoist CF2165 FID : )









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    Bored of the Jungle MensaTarzan's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jpy15026 View Post
    Love my Hoist CF2165 FID : )
    Thanks, repped and added link to latest model Hoist CF 3165 FID to the initial post.
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    Originally Posted by jpy15026 View Post
    Love my Hoist CF2165 FID : )









    Beautiful bench and great workout area.
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    Registered User Dinerobill's Avatar
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    This is a great thread. I wish there was a sticky for benches, as there is for power racks.

    I voted for the Rogue bench because I don't think I'm smart enough to operate some of the others shown. I like simple solid stuff. Another bench I like is the Legend bench shown below. It's not Legend's top-of-the-line bench but I like its simple design.

    http://www.legendfitness.com/product...ench_3103.aspx
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    Originally Posted by Dinerobill View Post
    This is a great thread. I wish there was a sticky for benches, as there is for power racks....
    I thought this was part of BB.com but I'm not sure...
    http://bodybuilding.shoutwiki.com/wiki/Benches

    I find it most useful to scroll down to the photos and then go back to the specs. A lot of folks are going to be shopping on Craigslist and some of the older benches aren't on it but it's still useful. And a forum search may bring up posts on many of the older commercial benches that you might find on Craigslist.
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    Originally Posted by morebarbell View Post
    I thought this was part of BB.com but I'm not sure...
    http://bodybuilding.shoutwiki.com/wiki/Benches

    I find it most useful to scroll down to the photos and then go back to the specs. A lot of folks are going to be shopping on Craigslist and some of the older benches aren't on it but it's still useful. And a forum search may bring up posts on many of the older commercial benches that you might find on Craigslist.
    Thanks for the link. I'd not seen that before.
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    Registered User Maluket's Avatar
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    You're not getting a Power Lift "Lever Action" Bench for $1000 unless it's used or they're quoting you lower prices than me. They quoted me $999 + $428 shipping for the Dumbbell Bench. Of course we're probably not including shipping. In which case for $1000 I'd almost vote for the Power Lift Dumbbell Bench. Unfortunately, it's too high for my tastes at 19 3/16" flat. But man, what a sexy bench.



    I'm very happy with my Williams Strength Signature 0-90. 125 pounds, oozes quality from the nice naugahyde to the smooth wheels. It's also easier to adjust than the Power Lift would have been.

    http://www.flexcart.com/members/fatb...cid=93&pid=256

    WS2.jpg

    All that said, I'm going to vote for the Rae Crowther for reputation and for the clever design to be perfectly stable and supported while flat while also including what looks to be a good decline. It also gives you more incline options than I have. I ultimately decided it wasn't the bench for me, but I'll throw my vote behind it for best bench for $1000 in general.
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    My vote is for the NP. Can't imagine any other bench being any more solid than it is. Although, I have never used any of the others so my opinion is very biased.

    JPY that Hoist is one sexy bench, those pictures look great.
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    This thread has come at an opportune time for me - I'm thinking of adding a commercial bench to my home gym. One option I have been looking at is the Hammer Strength. No idea if it's a winner but it should be added to the list as I know a few members have them and love them plus it is widely available due to LifeFitness's prominence worldwide.

    The precor icarian bench is actually the one I have my heart set on at the moment though. As precor has a distributor in NZ, I will probably spring for one eventually.
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    Banned Terpgym's Avatar
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    If this is for a standalone dumbbell bench, I would go with either the Nebula/Rogue/Rae Crowther, or the Hammer Strength/Life Fitness adjustable bench:






    If this is for moving into and out of a power rack, I would go with a flat bench.
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    Originally Posted by 2MoreRepz View Post
    My vote is for the NP. Can't imagine any other bench being any more solid than it is. Although, I have never used any of the others so my opinion is very biased.

    JPY that Hoist is one sexy bench, those pictures look great.
    I agree totally. I doubt any of the compared benches can exceed the NP. It is a work of art in construction and design... With 2 very small faults in my opinion. The handle to move the rack is too low and its 18" high. EXTREMELY minor but a factor for someone with $1K burning a hole in their in their pocket for a bench. It would still be my first choice vs competition listed.

    As much as I'm interested in the Precor bench, I'm also weary of pop pin style adjustments. It's like power racks. Everyone worries about the specs of the steel used in the framing but neglect to worry about the little pop pin holding everything together. Are any of them going to fail? Never. But a least they make them different so we have something to consider and I have something to bitch about.

    NP still for the win here.
    Last edited by GarageIron; 09-22-2013 at 10:08 PM.
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    Originally Posted by morebarbell View Post
    Great link, thanks for the contribution.
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    Originally Posted by deiphid View Post
    This thread has come at an opportune time for me - I'm thinking of adding a commercial bench to my home gym. One option I have been looking at is the Hammer Strength. No idea if it's a winner but it should be added to the list as I know a few members have them and love them plus it is widely available due to LifeFitness's prominence worldwide.
    Thanks, added Life Fitness/Hammer Strength Signature Multi-Adjustable Bench to the list.

    P.S. Will rep you later, currently I`m in rep purgatory: `You have given out too much Reputation in the last 24 hours, try again later`
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    if I had a grand to buy a new bench, I must have enough cash for a dedicated bench area and would go with the Elite Power Bench Rack

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    I know it's not in the poll selection; but my vote goes to Hammer Strength Pro Style Adjustable Bench. Model#FWMAB.

    http://www.lifefitness.com/commercia...hprostyle.html








    Last edited by Jetigen; 09-23-2013 at 10:33 AM.
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    Love my Power-Lift lever action bench. Easy to adjust, no pad gap when flat, and rock solid. While it is probably over budget as Maluket said (unless used as I was fortunate to find), since its in the poll and I can vouch for its greatness, I will throw my support behind it.

    Some other great options in this thread, but dropping $1000+ into a new bench should definitely get you quality equipment. I think my vote would be behind whatever I could get used (at a huge discount) and close by.
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    Originally Posted by Jetigen View Post
    I know it's not in the poll selection; but my vote goes to Hammer Strength Pro Style Adjustable Bench. Model#FWMAB.
    I replaced the Life Fitness Signature "multi-adjustable" with the Hammer Strength Pro Adjustable (FWMAB) since feature wise it is similar to the other benches on the list for comparison. I also only want one bench from each manufacturer.

    Here's a link to a BB member review for this bench:

    THREAD: Hammer strength adjustable bench review

    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...2278273&page=1
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    I own 4 of the Power Lift Lever actions. I really like them and they are nice benches but they just aren't solid enough. Having the front and back adjustment is great but the mechanism that allows it to slide is a little loose. So the back pad of the bench can sometimes shift from side to side slightly. These are really really nice benches and I love them but that is my only complaint.


    My alltime favorite bench are the UCS adjustable benches. They weigh a ton and are actually somewhat of an inconvenience for female clients but they are tanks. Something like 150 pounds each. I don't think they fit in the price range though unless they are found used. I have also found myself using the Hammer Strength adjustable a lot.
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    Cybex Blast from the past!!!!

    I know its not in the $1000 catagory anymore, but MSRP was probably close to it when it originally came out. Which kind of makes things even sweeter now, considering it can be had for less than half that price with near perfect pads, a new paint job, and replacing the wheels an logo (logo wasnt put on before this picture was taken). Cybex 5435 Bench, still my all time favorite bench and one I will never get rid of again. A perfect height at 16.5in from the ground, pad is on the firm side but confortable, 100lbs total weight with wheels on the back, and best of all the no-gap style seat!!! What more could you possibly want in a bench? But I guess since I have to vote for one on the list, I do like the look of the Williams Strength bench because it reminds me of the Cybex with a ladder style incline

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    [QUOTE=urbanlifter;1137922643]I know its not in the $1000 catagory anymore, but MSRP was probably close to it when it originally came out. Which kind of makes things even sweeter now, considering it can be had for less than half that price with near perfect pads, a new paint job, and replacing the wheels an logo (logo wasnt put on before this picture was taken). Cybex 5435 Bench, still my all time favorite bench and one I will never get rid of again. A perfect height at 16.5in from the ground, pad is on the firm side but confortable, 100lbs total weight with wheels on the back, and best of all the no-gap style seat!!! What more could you possibly want in a bench? But I guess since I have to vote for one on the list, I do like the look of the Williams Strength bench because it reminds me of the Cybex with a ladder style incline

    [/
    QUOTE]

    That is a very good bench and one that I have used often. I also am a fan of the Legend 3 way (3103). Purchased a couple of those benches for our agency when we were updating the gym. Personally, I own the Cybex Big Iron adjustable bench which is very solid. Made of 7 gauge steel and weighs about 122 pounds. It sits 17 inches from the floor, which is my preference. It runs a bit north of $1000. Somewhere in the Cost No Object thread, I posted some pictures of mine. Here is a link to the Cybex site on that bench:

    http://www.cybexintl.com/big-iron-lo...ell-bench.aspx

    Of the ones listed in the poll, I would either go with the Power-Lift or Legend. OSU Dimond mentioned the UCS bench, which is a excellent bench and would be in consideration for any list of great benches.
    Last edited by Skyaura; 09-23-2013 at 01:52 PM.
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    Originally Posted by OSUDimond View Post
    My alltime favorite bench are the UCS adjustable benches.
    I would like to pick up a UCS bench simply because those guys **** quality. They really go all out on their products. That might be my next bench.

    I'd definitely have to throw a vote in for the UCS and also the Nebula/Rae Crowthers bench shown above. (I don't have faith in the Rogue version)
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    Originally Posted by Maluket View Post
    I'm very happy with my Williams Strength Signature 0-90. 125 pounds, oozes quality from the nice naugahyde to the smooth wheels. It's also easier to adjust than the Power Lift would have been.
    Thanks Maluket. I've added a link to your review of Williams Strength/Elite FS Signature 0-90 to the second "review" post of this thread.
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    Originally Posted by HealthNutMD View Post
    I would like to pick up a UCS bench simply because those guys **** quality. They really go all out on their products. That might be my next bench.

    I'd definitely have to throw a vote in for the UCS and also the Nebula/Rae Crowthers bench shown above. (I don't have faith in the Rogue version)
    You wont regret it. My only complaint is that it has the ability to bruise the hell out of your wrist. It is so heavy and the handle design sets you up to just bash into the forearm bone. Otherwise they are incredible.
    Nothing is impossible.

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