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  1. #181
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    sorry john but i have multiple texas bars, and the stamped mac bar. my texas bars are from the 90s, 2000s and 2010s. including the mac bar all the knurl is the same sharp texas knurl. no diff at all.
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  2. #182
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    Originally Posted by KyleAaron View Post
    The same reason Rip once derided online training as useless, but there's now SSOC. Matt Reynolds.

    Because Rip is more or less libertarian, so his idea was to educate and make a bunch of coaches and send them out the Spread The Word, if they succeeded or failed then that was What The Market Wanted, so there.

    But then Matt Reynolds, owner of Strong Gym, became an SSC. And his idea was: most black iron gyms are dirty shtholes, but Jenny Soccermum doesn't want to go to the toilet after a 300lb powerlifter has been in there. Could we, he asked, have a gym with great customer service that was impeccably clean but also taught people the lifts?

    And he and his buddies went and started a gym and it did very well, he talks about it in this interview from 2014.

    Well, the interview is an interesting read. No idea really who Matt Reynolds is - other than that interview - but if he is behind this SS franchise/equipment deal then the whole thing is even further suspect. In that interview, he expressly says he did things backwards - he partnered up and opened a gym with no business plan. Then, after the fact, he developed a business plan for the business he already started. That is totally backwards and it sounds like he basically got lucky that his business succeeded despite investing up front without a business plan.

    So, if that's his approach to starting his own business, is this whole SS equipment deal and franchising arrangement being launched - with a business plan to be built up around it on the fly?
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  3. #183
    Registered User MGM711's Avatar
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    This whole concept of SS gym franchises is sort of ridiculous to me just like the way the whole SS line of equipment is ridiculous to me.

    While conceptually, the SS gym sounds interesting, but isn't this essentially what most CF boxes that aren't competitive at churning out CF Games competitors are now? That's what most small box CF gyms are in my area that aren't the big ones who are competitive, they market exactly to the stay at home mom who's seeking "functional fitness" revolving around basic barbell training with a metcon. These gyms struggle to stay open as it is, and I would say that SS brand has nowhere near the same brand recognition as Crossfit, especially to the market they are aiming at. Somehow, I just don't see how this is going to work...sounds like a quick money grab to me.
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  4. #184
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    Originally Posted by MGM711 View Post
    This whole concept of SS gym franchises is sort of ridiculous to me just like the way the whole SS line of equipment is ridiculous to me.

    While conceptually, the SS gym sounds interesting, but isn't this essentially what most CF boxes that aren't competitive at churning out CF Games competitors are now? That's what most small box CF gyms are in my area that aren't the big ones who are competitive, they market exactly to the stay at home mom who's seeking "functional fitness" revolving around basic barbell training with a metcon. These gyms struggle to stay open as it is, and I would say that SS brand has nowhere near the same brand recognition as Crossfit, especially to the market they are aiming at. Somehow, I just don't see how this is going to work...sounds like a quick money grab to me.
    One of the reasons I enjoy my own gym at home. I don't need to deal with any BS or watch the weirdness of the fitness industry as it evolves or factions itself further into skinny-fat-cardio-fluffer gyms, crossfit boxes, or private PL gyms. That said, I miss the camaraderie of consistent training partners as well as some occasional eye candy for inspiration.
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  5. #185
    Registered User murphyreedus's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by C123C View Post
    One of the reasons I enjoy my own gym at home. I don't need to deal with any BS or watch the weirdness of the fitness industry as it evolves or factions itself further into skinny-fat-cardio-fluffer gyms, crossfit boxes, or private PL gyms. That said, I miss the camaraderie of consistent training partners as well as some occasional eye candy for inspiration.
    All of this.

    I'm not a strength athlete and I like too many different areas of training to be able to think that there's one best way.

    I used to like SS because they presented themselves as low-BS, results-driven training, but over time read enough stupid dogmatic BS from people in positions of authority like "SSBs are only for injured people, if you aren't hurt and don't use a straight bar you're a special snowflake" and "farmer carriers are a way to display strength, not build it" and similar to realize that their way wasn't for me.
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  6. #186
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    Originally Posted by JohnCuster View Post
    I’m senseing a distaste for Matt in your writing...is that the case or am I off base?
    You are entirely off-base. In my experience of personally meeting, being coached and assessed by him for the seminar, having dinner with him, and talking to him on and off in the four years since, he is an entirely decent man, a good coach who cares deeply about his lifters, and a smart businessman.
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  7. #187
    Registered User JohnCuster's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by matrix563 View Post
    sorry john but i have multiple texas bars, and the stamped mac bar. my texas bars are from the 90s, 2000s and 2010s. including the mac bar all the knurl is the same sharp texas knurl. no diff at all.
    Not sure why you’re saying sorry, if directed at me.

    I never said they had a different knurl, just that the knurl on the orginals I’ve handled was lovely...they were bare steel and had some miles on them so they felt very good in hand.

    I’m a huge fan of the current TPB and the knurling, but to date I’ve only handled the existing model of in black zinc (new and worn down) and the chrome I just received.

    Again, I’m also only going by what Buddy Capps told me directly on the history and makes of the bars.
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  8. #188
    Registered User JohnCuster's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by KyleAaron View Post
    You are entirely off-base. In my experience of personally meeting, being coached and assessed by him for the seminar, having dinner with him, and talking to him on and off in the four years since, he is an entirely decent man, a good coach who cares deeply about his lifters, and a smart businessman.
    All good, that is why I asked for clarification; inflection is often lost in text.

    I was seeing what you wrote as Matt being poison in the well of what was once a more pure organization/set up.

    Matt seems like a good guy, although I have never met him in person.

    I did exchange friendly commentsw/Matt on Instagram once though, so I am expecting him for Christmas dinner this year now that we’re best friends. 😁

    Matt is a smart business man, for sure, between his gym, online coaching and podcasting...I tend to listen to him and Scott Hambrick’s stuff when they are discussing biz ownership more than training.
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  9. #189
    Registered User dparty82's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by JohnCuster View Post

    I’m a huge fan of the current TPB and the knurling, but to date I’ve only handled the existing model of in black zinc (new and worn down) and the chrome I just received.
    Did you receive the all chrome (shaft & sleeves) or the black zinc bar with chrome sleeves? Also, who did you purchase the chrome bar from?
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  10. #190
    Registered User JohnCuster's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by dparty82 View Post
    Did you receive the all chrome (shaft & sleeves) or the black zinc bar with chrome sleeves? Also, who did you purchase the chrome bar from?
    Chrome shaft and sleeves, ordered direct from Capps.

    At the time I did it over the phone w/Mitch, Buddy’s SIL.

    Now you can order from their website and select Bare, Zinc, Chrome for the shaft and Bare or Chrome for the sleeves on most bars.

    It is worth noting that the AAB doesn’t look to exist in a bare option for online ordering, probably due to the SS bar being bare and very similar in knurl.

    https://www.texaspowerbars.com/default.asp
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  11. #191
    Registered User dparty82's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by JohnCuster View Post
    Chrome shaft and sleeves, ordered direct from Capps.

    At the time I did it over the phone w/Mitch, Buddy’s SIL.

    Now you can order from their website and select Bare, Zinc, Chrome for the shaft and Bare or Chrome for the sleeves on most bars.

    It is worth noting that the AAB doesn’t look to exist in a bare option for online ordering, probably due to the SS bar being bare and very similar in knurl.

    https://www.texaspowerbars.com/default.asp
    Sweet...thanks.

    How do you like the chrome shaft vs the zinc?
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  12. #192
    Registered User JohnCuster's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by dparty82 View Post
    Sweet...thanks.

    How do you like the chrome shaft vs the zinc?
    So far so good, although the knurl seems to lose just a little bit of it’s bite w/the chrome, but not to a point where performance suffers.

    The aesthetics are fantastic.
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  13. #193
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    Deal alert! eBay program code PERFECTGAME gets you the Buddy Capps TPB for $249 shipped right now. OPB might be a bit more stiff and have higher steel ratings, but I would buy this barbell ALL day long at that price over the Rogue.
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  14. #194
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    Originally Posted by JohnCuster View Post
    I was seeing what you wrote as Matt being poison in the well of what was once a more pure organization/set up.
    Nope.

    It's become (relatively) big when Rip's at retirement age, and he does things like throw people out of his gym, and ban people from his website, or say things which cause SSCs to resign their accreditation, or bring on people who are more interested in their own personal brand - all of which necessarily limit growth and longevity of the organisation. And of course, the fitness world has a natural attrition, too - few of the trainers in the business when I opened my garage gym four years ago are still working, and even fewer from more than eight years ago when I started at the globogym.

    "Pure" would mean nothing new comes in. And they need something new. They've been hovering around 100 SSCs for a few years now, they build up the numbers a small bit and then some quit for various reasons. For SS to exist past the new few years as more than a dwindling collection of coaches telling people "you gotta squat or you're a pussy" someone has to take it in a new direction.

    Whether the direction Reynolds is taking it will make it last I don't know. Many businesspeople face this problem: the skills needed to get you to a certain level are different to those needed to take you to the next level and keep you there. I don't have those skills, and I don't believe Rip has them; Reynolds may have them.
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  15. #195
    Registered User JohnCuster's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by KyleAaron View Post
    Nope.

    It's become (relatively) big when Rip's at retirement age, and he does things like throw people out of his gym, and ban people from his website, or say things which cause SSCs to resign their accreditation, or bring on people who are more interested in their own personal brand - all of which necessarily limit growth and longevity of the organisation. And of course, the fitness world has a natural attrition, too - few of the trainers in the business when I opened my garage gym four years ago are still working, and even fewer from more than eight years ago when I started at the globogym.

    "Pure" would mean nothing new comes in. And they need something new. They've been hovering around 100 SSCs for a few years now, they build up the numbers a small bit and then some quit for various reasons. For SS to exist past the new few years as more than a dwindling collection of coaches telling people "you gotta squat or you're a pussy" someone has to take it in a new direction.

    Whether the direction Reynolds is taking it will make it last I don't know. Many businesspeople face this problem: the skills needed to get you to a certain level are different to those needed to take you to the next level and keep you there. I don't have those skills, and I don't believe Rip has them; Reynolds may have them.

    That is a great summary.

    As a biz owner, especially one that took over someone else’s failing biz, combined it w/my own and is in a rapid growth phase...I can’t agree more.

    Matt seems pretty smart; Ray Gillenwater is doing the gym portion of the biz for Rip, and he is also pretty impressive and biz savvy.

    I’m curious to see where it goes, that is for sure.
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  16. #196
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    Cool place Rip has. I could totally train there. I guess he's done with Johnny Brown.
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  17. #197
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    Originally Posted by Jason2459 View Post
    Cool place Rip has. I could totally train there. I guess he's done with Johnny Brown.
    https://youtu.be/bGY5bQ4tYtc
    I believe it was a decision based totally around production volume, especially w/the franchises coming up.

    Johnny Brown, in my experince, wasn’t very responsive to requests for quotes and so on.

    I know TSS is generally hated around here, but I think they have the production capacity, at least by SS evaluation to meet the expected demand to fill gyms.

    Someone said the Brown racks have clear coat on them...would be nice if TSS added that as option at the minimum.
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    Originally Posted by JohnCuster View Post
    I know TSS is generally hated around here, but I think they have the production capacity, at least by SS evaluation to meet the expected demand to fill gyms.
    If they have the production capacity - they keep it well hidden. I had about 3 follow up, small accessory orders with TSS after buying my rack. One as for 4 safety straps, one for 8 weight horns, and one was for 2 extra long weight horns. Small orders. Each one of those required 3-4 months, with multiple follow ups by me on order status. If that happens with simple, small accessory orders, I'd hate to be waiting on a gym full of equipment. Might take years.
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  19. #199
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    Originally Posted by leonard1 View Post
    If they have the production capacity - they keep it well hidden. I had about 3 follow up, small accessory orders with TSS after buying my rack. One as for 4 safety straps, one for 8 weight horns, and one was for 2 extra long weight horns. Small orders. Each one of those required 3-4 months, with multiple follow ups by me on order status. If that happens with simple, small accessory orders, I'd hate to be waiting on a gym full of equipment. Might take years.
    Given TSS’ reputation around here, it sounds par for the course.

    I’m going by what Rip said on his boards re: capacity and so on.

    I’ve never taken the leap on an item from them.

    Unfortunately, poor communication, absurd lead times, and general lack of customer service are seemingly industry standard outside of a few vendors.

    This is why I believe Rogue does so well; they’ve hit the sweet spot between fast, (relatively) good, and (relatively) affordable.
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    I have a TSS fid bench with step ups. I absolutely love it. It meets IPF specs and feels just like the bench on an ER combo rack at meets.

    Granted it took 3x as long as advertised to get, was hard to get a hold of, bench pad didn't initially fit when I got it and had to wait longer for replacement, welds are sloppy, etc

    But I love the bench and was worth the wait for me. I wasn't in a rush luckily as I already had a bench it was replacing.
    My Training Journal: http://tinyurl.com/jasons-journal
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    08/17:245,185,275 02/18:345,275,380
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    goal: hit previous SBD #s again 524,364,562
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  21. #201
    Registered User BYOBB's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by MGM711 View Post
    This whole concept of SS gym franchises is sort of ridiculous to me just like the way the whole SS line of equipment is ridiculous to me.

    While conceptually, the SS gym sounds interesting, but isn't this essentially what most CF boxes that aren't competitive at churning out CF Games competitors are now? That's what most small box CF gyms are in my area that aren't the big ones who are competitive, they market exactly to the stay at home mom who's seeking "functional fitness" revolving around basic barbell training with a metcon. These gyms struggle to stay open as it is, and I would say that SS brand has nowhere near the same brand recognition as Crossfit, especially to the market they are aiming at. Somehow, I just don't see how this is going to work...sounds like a quick money grab to me.

    On paper, it doesn't sound too bad. Currently if you already have a gym, you can get certified as a SS Gym. Having been to a few in the southeast, I can say that those at least are doing very well. I suppose this new model improves consistency in that each gym will start from the ground up with the "SS model". There will never be that many of them around, especially compared to Crossfit boxes. The SS gyms take care to cover themselves legally, they know their target audience well, the coaches are (mostly) well informed, they don't saturate the market they're in and the equipment tends to be good. Who knows if that is enough to succeed everywhere. Black iron gyms go under for many reasons that this SS model avoids.

    As for the equipment,

    SS Bench: I've benched on wooden benches before and I don't mind the wood itself if I laid down a shelf liner for grip. But this bench is simply too narrow for me to use. It does look nice.

    SS Rack: This is a simple design that you'll find in old gyms around the country and it works well. People's concerns over rust and patina are overblown I think. If you treat it like you would a bare steel bar, it will be good for decades. I know of a similar 2x2 rack that has been used by football players and other athletes for at least 30 years and there is nothing wrong with it at all. Would I buy this rack if I was in the market for one? At that price, hell no! But functionally it is probably perfectly fine.

    SS Bar: I will have to try it for myself before reaching any conclusions. The OPB, TPB, and B&R 2.0 and I'm sure several others are all good bars.
    Last edited by BYOBB; Yesterday at 05:54 PM.
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  22. #202
    Registered User leonard1's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by JohnCuster View Post
    Given TSS’ reputation around here, it sounds par for the course.

    I’m going by what Rip said on his boards re: capacity and so on.
    But, the discord between these 2 points of view is precisely the point. If SS is this far off on the assessment of TSS - what else is shaky with this whole business model?
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  23. #203
    Registered User JohnCuster's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by leonard1 View Post
    But, the discord between these 2 points of view is precisely the point. If SS is this far off on the assessment of TSS - what else is shaky with this whole business model?
    Slippery slope?
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  24. #204
    Registered User leonard1's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by JohnCuster View Post
    Slippery slope?
    Yep and it would appear that SS is on it.
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  25. #205
    Registered User JohnCuster's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by leonard1 View Post
    Yep and it would appear that SS is on it.
    Well played.
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