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Thread: Merax Dumbbells

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    Registered User mulula's Avatar
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    Merax Dumbbells

    My son does some weights at school but they limit the available weights. He wants to do some more at home. I am looking at something that can go past 50lb. The Merax adjustable dumbbells seem to fit the bill and on Amazon they are $400 incl. stand + $50 shipping. Are there local places to buy those so I can save the shipping cost? What other online places are good?
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    Originally Posted by mulula View Post
    My son does some weights at school but they limit the available weights. He wants to do some more at home. I am looking at something that can go past 50lb. The Merax adjustable dumbbells seem to fit the bill and on Amazon they are $400 incl. stand + $50 shipping. Are there local places to buy those so I can save the shipping cost? What other online places are good?
    Avoid those, get something made of metal such as
    https://www.amazon.com/Yes4All-Adjus...dp/B01D487TDA/ (get the 200 lb kit, its 2x100lb)
    or
    https://www.amazon.com/PowerBlock-El.../dp/B00GNUB40G (Get the 70lb or more)
    or
    https://www.ironmaster.com/products/...-dumbbells-75/

    For a teen I'd get the Yes4All type. Max of 100 lb per side will be fine for most people. Should be nearly indestructible.
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    Registered User mulula's Avatar
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    Thank you for the response. When you say they are not made of metal are you referring to the handle and the dial? It's my understanding that the plates and locking mechanism is metal. I could be wrong, though.

    The Yes4All ones are probably out. From my past experience it just takes too much time to change weights even if the locking/screw mechanism is quick.

    The IronMaster are nice but out of budget, unfortunately.

    I was seriously looking at the PowerBlocks. It just seems awkward to put your hands into those dumbbells (my sons hands are pretty big like mine). Also, if you do bicep curls don't the bars at the 'entrance' of the dumbbell hit/rub against your wrist? Granted, the wrist movement is minimal but the 'opening' of those dumbbells seems small. The PowerBlocks also seem pretty wide but maybe that's ok.
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    Originally Posted by mulula View Post
    Thank you for the response. When you say they are not made of metal are you referring to the handle and the dial? It's my understanding that the plates and locking mechanism is metal. I could be wrong, though.

    The Yes4All ones are probably out. From my past experience it just takes too much time to change weights even if the locking/screw mechanism is quick.

    The IronMaster are nice but out of budget, unfortunately.

    I was seriously looking at the PowerBlocks. It just seems awkward to put your hands into those dumbbells (my sons hands are pretty big like mine). Also, if you do bicep curls don't the bars at the 'entrance' of the dumbbell hit/rub against your wrist? Granted, the wrist movement is minimal but the 'opening' of those dumbbells seems small. The PowerBlocks also seem pretty wide but maybe that's ok.
    The merax type of dumbbells are cumbersome to use, especially for exercises that don't use the full weight since you get the full length of the dumbbell. The powerblocks don't limit wrist movement and on top of it you shouldn't be bending your wrists on bicep curls using your forearms. From using powerblocks for years one of the only things I have problems with is wrist curls with them.
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    Registered User ampire's Avatar
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    Reading the critical and low star reviews for the Merax, you can find information about them not retaining the plates properly and components breaking on them. I do not think they are a quality product. In the photos, it appears that there are a lot of plastic components on them. The stand does not look particularly durable with its plastic office chair wheels. The dials on the ends of the dumbbells are plastic, the handles look plastic, and the base station is plastic. Furthermore, that style dumbbell is always full length, it does not shorten with less weight, which makes it awkward for curls and other movements where the bar is close to your body.

    I don't trust amazon 5 star reviews anymore because the system is frequently gamed by companies sending review samples to "professional reviewers" or by using bots. My impression is that these Merax look like junk.

    I have seen Ironmasters in the $400 range used. Have you looked on craigslist, ebay, offerup, facebook, and other used marketplaces to see if there are used Ironmasters available. Same goes for the Power Block.

    As far as the spinlock set goes, because they are so cheap you can run multiple sets and set them up in advance to save time. That is one way to get around the weight change time. The other way is to change weights less frequently, increase weight more conservatively so you work in a higher rep range, set them up in advance of the workout, and if it feels too light do more reps. At least they are indestructible.

    Dumbbells do get dropped occasionally. Especially if you do not have a spotter. If you are going to put a lot of money into something, you want it to be durable. Even if you are a careful person, things happen.

    edit:
    One of the plastic trays that the weights sit in is warped which causes the weights not to sit properly. When I drop the handle in it doesn’t align so I’m not able the adjust the weights. I’ve ruled out an issue with the handle because I can switch to the other set with any issues. I’ve also tried switching the plates with no luck. I spent $300 on these only to be able to use one and a return will be a pain.
    Same thing happened to me. The weights slip off in the middle of lifting. The lifting mechanism on these weights is not sound. The rubber wears off causing them to loose their grip on the plates.
    I bought these adjustable dumbbells about a year ago. My wife and I have been using them often...we average maybe 3-4 workouts per week for each of us. Recently we have noticed a problem with these weights. The design of the handle and how it clicks into each weight is such that the rubber on the gripping portion of the bar is wearing thin. This has caused the grip on each weight to falter. The end result is that weights will slip off in the middle of a lift. We've each come VERY close to breaking a toe with the falling weights.
    I use my weights almost every day of the week. After a month one handle was unable to grasp one of the 2.5kg weights and it fell off and almost hit me during a chest press. Customer service was great and they sent me a replacement.

    The replacement handle lasted another month until the same thing happened when I was curling. Once again customer support sent me a new handle.

    Last week my third handle failed to hold a weight and it almost hit me in the face when it fell off.

    Three handles in 6 months is excessive especially considering the potential outcome of getting hit with a weight. Customer service was great for each occurrence. The only down side is it takes a few weeks to get the replacement handle each time.
    Last edited by ampire; 01-14-2019 at 05:16 AM.
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    mulula,
    Just spend your money on a 90lb set of POWERBLOCKS and get it over with. As I've posted before:

    This
    ='s 28 pairs of dumbbells

    56 dumbbells

    2,565 lbs of dumbbells.

    http://powerblock.com/index.php
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    Originally Posted by supramax View Post
    mulula,
    Just spend your money on a 90lb set of POWERBLOCKS and get it over with. As I've posted before:

    This
    ='s 28 pairs of dumbbells

    56 dumbbells

    2,565 lbs of dumbbells.

    http://powerblock.com/index.php
    What is the current go-to model, the Elite90?
    Good deal for $557, I think the Elite is the only one still made in USA but I could be incorrect.

    http://powerblock.com/prod_homeuse_elite5-90.php

    This guy has a giant guide to powerblock models:
    https://www.amazon.com/review/RJM7AZO4GMPYT
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    I own both the Elite 90's and recently bought a set of the Merax dumbbells so that I have a second set of adjustables for my training partner. For reference, I've owned several other sets of Powerblocks through the years, including the now discontinued XXL set. I've owned both the old and new styles of Ironmasters. I also owned a set of early Bowflex 1090's. My thoughts on the Merax. They may not be quite as user friendly as the Powerblocks, or as well built as the Irnomasters, they are very functional, and a great value. They are what the Bowflex 1090's would have been if they had used better materials. Would I choose them over the Powerblocks? No. Powerblocks have such a great mix of build quality and super fast weight changes. Would I take them over the Ironmasters? Maybe, considering the Ironmasters are significantly more expensive, and changing the weights are much slower than the Merax and Powerblocks. If the price was lower on the Ironmasters, then I'd probably take the Iromasters, as they are indestructible.

    Now, that's clear as mud, right? Basically, for the price, the Merax dumbbells are surprisingly well built, and weights are lightning fast to change. Definitely worth the purchase if the Powerblock Elites or Ironmasters are out of your budget.
    Last edited by Paulie_G; 01-14-2019 at 07:09 AM.
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    Originally Posted by ampire View Post
    What is the current go-to model, the Elite90?
    Good deal for $557, I think the Elite is the only one still made in USA but I could be incorrect.

    http://powerblock.com/prod_homeuse_elite5-90.php

    This guy has a giant guide to powerblock models:
    https://www.amazon.com/review/RJM7AZO4GMPYT
    They are all good and PowerBlock has top notch quality control. I avoid Chinese garlic, though.
    Fitness Depot still has discontinued models. They've opened some stores in the States, but I don't know how the prices compare to the PowerBlock site. The Canadian Fitness Depot has the best prices in North America, but they currently don't have the newest 'PRO' series in stock.
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    Thanks everybody for the feedback. I appreciate it. The Ironmaster are definitely out of my budget. The bowflex 1090 has bad reviews. So it's the Merax or the PowerBlock. Merax doesn't seem to get much praise here, though Paulie did give some hope. I agree with ampire and also have become very critical of positve Amazon reviews.

    So the Merax are $350 with shipping (no stand). That's within my budget. The PowerBlocks are REALLY stretching it because they are almost double. Also, they have so many models I am not sure which one would be right. There is the

    * Sport EXP 5-90 for $700
    * Elite 90 for $650
    * EXP Stage 1 for $410 + cost to expand beyond 50lb

    What are the differences between those options? Also is it worth 2x the price?
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    Originally Posted by mulula View Post
    Thanks everybody for the feedback. I appreciate it. The Ironmaster are definitely out of my budget. The bowflex 1090 has bad reviews. So it's the Merax or the PowerBlock. Merax doesn't seem to get much praise here, though Paulie did give some hope. I agree with ampire and also have become very critical of positve Amazon reviews.

    So the Merax are $350 with shipping (no stand). That's within my budget. The PowerBlocks are REALLY stretching it because they are almost double. Also, they have so many models I am not sure which one would be right. There is the

    * Sport EXP 5-90 for $700
    * Elite 90 for $650
    * EXP Stage 1 for $410 + cost to expand beyond 50lb

    What are the differences between those options? Also is it worth 2x the price?
    Here is a list of differences:
    http://www.powerblock.com/series-differences.php

    Elite is made in the USA and the EXP is imported. Elite has a 10 year warranty and EXP has a 15 year warranty.

    On Amazon, the Elite 70 is $417 and then the expansion is $108 for $525 for the 90 set.
    https://www.amazon.com/POWERBLOCK-El...p?ie=UTF8&th=1

    So from Amazon you are $525 with free shipping for the Elite 70 + the 20lb add on to make it Elite 90.


    $525 for Elite 90 seems like a good deal.

    DumbbellBuddy.com is $10 more than Amazon for the Elite 70, but only has sales tax if you live in Nevada. Amazon has sales tax everywhere I believe.
    https://dumbbellbuddy.com/powerblock...dumbbells.aspx
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    Last edited by ampire; 01-17-2019 at 12:54 PM.
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    The IronMasters are the only ones that include a stand in the price. Powerblocks’ stand is $111 on Amazon. It doesn’t put them that far apart, but is a lot of price creep from your original budget. The IronMasters don’t take long to change. I have a set and never been bothered by it, and you could drop them off your house and hurt your driveway.
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    Originally Posted by ampire View Post
    Here is a list of differences:
    http://www.powerblock.com/series-differences.php

    Elite is made in the USA and the EXP is imported. Elite has a 10 year warranty and EXP has a 15 year warranty...
    Fixed.
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