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  1. #1
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    Removing crossmembers from Rogue RML 690?

    First off, let me apologize for the rotation - iphone image metadata and the crappy code on this site don’t play nice together.

    So I’ve got this rml-690 rack. Note the xml-43 crossmembers at the bottom below the safety straps.



    I’m thinking about removing them. Doing so would allow me to deadlift in the rack, which while not strictly necessary would increase the space available when my wife is simultaneously using other parts of our gym.

    I’m not positive it will still be stable when racking heavy squats or such though (currently "heavy" is only 120kg, but eventually...). I’ve considered simply moving them up to simply sit immediately below the top-mounted crossmembers. This should keep the stability pretty close to where it’s at now - the uprights won’t shift significantly on impact - but may not be necessary.

    The only downside would be looks - can’t see me being happy with the way that would appear. But none of the lifts I do would be impeded - I’m too tall to do an overhead press in that basement, let alone in the rack.

    Do you guys see any downside to either moving or removing the crossmembers?
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    Would it effect the way you work out to keep them mounted low but turn them crossways in the rack instead of how you have them now? If not, and you want the ability to deadlift in it, I would at least consider doing that to maintain stability in the lower part of the uprights.
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    Chihuahua in the rain Corbets's Avatar
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    I’d have to stop bench pressing then, so that’s probably a no-go.
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    How about deadlifting sideways in the rack? I would not remove the crossmembers, maybe if it was bolted down but you would still have an unstable rack.
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    how much clearance do you need? I would just get enough stall mats to put 2x2 squares outside the rack and a 1x2.5' rectangle in the rack when you deadlift. Just stack till you get enough clearance. Or wood.
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    I once considered the opposite (ie removing the top cross beam) so as to create an “open top” rack for overhead presses, but decided against it. Forum members provided similar comments against it as you have gotten. However, two cross beams immediately below/above each other (as you have proposed) connecting the same uprights would seem pretty solid in terms of keeping the uprights in place I would have thought.
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    confused

    Hi. I'm confused, and it could totally be me not getting it, but how do the bottom crossmembers being attached prevent you from deadlifting inside the rack?By the looks of the plates you have on the rack, those plates on a bar would clear the bottom crossmembers wouldn't they? Or am I totally missing what you're trying to accomplish?
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    Originally Posted by kis55 View Post
    Hi. I'm confused, and it could totally be me not getting it, but how do the bottom crossmembers being attached prevent you from deadlifting inside the rack?By the looks of the plates you have on the rack, those plates on a bar would clear the bottom crossmembers wouldn't they? Or am I totally missing what you're trying to accomplish?
    This is my first thought. How high is the top of the crossmember? If it is high enough that the bar rests on them, as mentioned, place a mat to stand on and rest the plates on.
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    I have an RML-490 w/ a Titan X2 extension at the front so it's a similar setup to yours. Even with those crossmembers the rack isn't as stable as I'd like, so I definitely wouldn't remove them. I can actually gently kick the rear uprights and they'll move even with all that weight in the front. Of course it's not like the rack is going to come crashing down, but for me, I want it to be completely rock solid.
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    Chihuahua in the rain Corbets's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Cleveland33 View Post
    how much clearance do you need? I would just get enough stall mats to put 2x2 squares outside the rack and a 1x2.5' rectangle in the rack when you deadlift. Just stack till you get enough clearance. Or wood.
    I actually did something similar a few days ago - I use deadlift deadeners on my lift, and those give me enough clearance that it works. However, any sideways motion at all (which I shouldn’t have) would be likely to bring the plates into contact with the bar, which I could imagine having unfortunate results if I drop a heavy deadlift (which again, I don’t normally do - I go for controlled eccentrics). I’m just a very risk-adverse type in some areas.

    Originally Posted by kis55 View Post
    Hi. I'm confused, and it could totally be me not getting it, but how do the bottom crossmembers being attached prevent you from deadlifting inside the rack?By the looks of the plates you have on the rack, those plates on a bar would clear the bottom crossmembers wouldn't they? Or am I totally missing what you're trying to accomplish?
    It’s very, very close, but when the plates are touching the floor, there’s just enough contact between bar and crossmember that I’ve put one or two scratches on the crossmember already last year. Close enough that maybe, just maybe, if I cut out the rubber flooring underneath the uprights and put the rack directly on the floor it’d be ok, aside from the side-to-side issue indicated above.

    I’m still thinking about trying the double-bracing up high. It’s a four day weekend out here, today is my rest day and tomorrow is legs (I do deadlifts on legs day, I know that’s not popular in some circles ), so... maybe I’ll give that a try today and report back.

    Cheers everyone. Definitely won’t remove the bracing altogether in any case, since I don’t intend to bolt the rack to the foundation.
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    Originally Posted by Corbets View Post
    I actually did something similar a few days ago - I use deadlift deadeners on my lift, and those give me enough clearance that it works. However, any sideways motion at all (which I shouldn’t have) would be likely to bring the plates into contact with the bar, which I could imagine having unfortunate results if I drop a heavy deadlift (which again, I don’t normally do - I go for controlled eccentrics). I’m just a very risk-adverse type in some areas.



    It’s very, very close, but when the plates are touching the floor, there’s just enough contact between bar and crossmember that I’ve put one or two scratches on the crossmember already last year. Close enough that maybe, just maybe, if I cut out the rubber flooring underneath the uprights and put the rack directly on the floor it’d be ok, aside from the side-to-side issue indicated above.

    I’m still thinking about trying the double-bracing up high. It’s a four day weekend out here, today is my rest day and tomorrow is legs (I do deadlifts on legs day, I know that’s not popular in some circles ), so... maybe I’ll give that a try today and report back.

    Cheers everyone. Definitely won’t remove the bracing altogether in any case, since I don’t intend to bolt the rack to the foundation.
    Just put a layer of stall mat outside the uprights whenever you deadlift.
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    Originally Posted by Corbets View Post
    It’s very, very close, but when the plates are touching the floor, there’s just enough contact between bar and crossmember that I’ve put one or two scratches on the crossmember already last year. Close enough that maybe, just maybe, if I cut out the rubber flooring underneath the uprights and put the rack directly on the floor it’d be ok, aside from the side-to-side issue indicated above.
    If it's that close, then let me present a different angle altogether ... What about getting some UHMW strips off eBay and attaching them to the crossmembers? Nothing changes with the rack structure and you have the bonus of a bar that's far easier to load for DLs.
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    Originally Posted by Duplicitous View Post
    If it's that close, then let me present a different angle altogether ... What about getting some UHMW strips off eBay and attaching them to the crossmembers? Nothing changes with the rack structure and you have the bonus of a bar that's far easier to load for DLs.
    He mentioned that the bar is already slightly touching the crossmember when plates are on the floor. Adding UHMW would prevent scratching things up but would increase the height more so that the plates would be slightly off the floor which would not be good . By placing a mat on each side under the plates would give adequate clearence above the crossmember.
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    Chihuahua in the rain Corbets's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by irongrandpa View Post
    He mentioned that the bar is already slightly touching the crossmember when plates are on the floor. Adding UHMW would prevent scratching things up but would increase the height more so that the plates would be slightly off the floor which would not be good . By placing a mat on each side under the plates would give adequate clearence above the crossmember.
    Correct, but the UHMW is a pretty good suggestion nonetheless. I get the feeling that a lot of the people posting about mats and such here don’t know what Deadlift Deadeners are - have a quick google, they serve the purpose of deadening sound by putting a layer of rubber between the plates and the ground (thereby lifting the plates higher off the ground).

    So combine that, which I tried a few days ago, with UHMW strips (had no idea I could buy something like that, could be useful in a number of scenarios) to eliminate residual risk of the bar hitting the crossmembers, and the only thing I’m left with is the risk the bar traveling horizontally (perpendicular to the direction I’m facing) for some reason. But really, I can’t think when I’ve ever moved the bar more than an inch side-to-side like that...

    Maybe that’s worth trying, Duplicitous. Thanks!
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    Ok, doing deadlifts this morning, so let me add a few pics of my setup with the deadeners.

    First, the bar on the crossmember, to illustrate the fairly tight side-to-side confines.



    Then with 20kg plates to show the elevation above the crossmembers when using the deadeners.



    And finally a couple shots of the deadeners themselves to illustrate for those who don’t know them.





    Should I be worried about possible side-to-side movements at extreme weights?
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    Originally Posted by irongrandpa View Post
    He mentioned that the bar is already slightly touching the crossmember when plates are on the floor. Adding UHMW would prevent scratching things up but would increase the height more so that the plates would be slightly off the floor which would not be good . By placing a mat on each side under the plates would give adequate clearence above the crossmember.
    That's why I suggested the UHMW - to protect the rack/bar and keep the plates just a hair off the floor for easier loading. Strictly speaking deadlifts are supposed to be done from the floor, but in reality a 1/2" or 1" isn't going to make much difference. With taller guys some personal trainers and coaches will even start the DL with the loaded bars sitting on a pair of plates. Anyway, it's just something for the OP to consider.

    Originally Posted by Corbets View Post
    Should I be worried about possible side-to-side movements at extreme weights?
    That would make DL uncomfortable in the rack for me, but if you're ok with it then the rack will survive. Most of the force is going to come from above even with the side-to-side movement. You're not going to hit it laterally with enough force to really present any major issues imho. More likely you'd catch the top outside edge of the crossmember.
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    Originally Posted by Duplicitous View Post
    That's why I suggested the UHMW - to protect the rack/bar and keep the plates just a hair off the floor for easier loading. Strictly speaking deadlifts are supposed to be done from the floor, but in reality a 1/2" or 1" isn't going to make much difference. With taller guys some personal trainers and coaches will even start the DL with the loaded bars sitting on a pair of plates. Anyway, it's just something for the OP to consider.



    That would make DL uncomfortable in the rack for me, but if you're ok with it then the rack will survive. Most of the force is going to come from above even with the side-to-side movement. You're not going to hit it laterally with enough force to really present any major issues imho. More likely you'd catch the top outside edge of the crossmember.
    As a taller guy who’s not planning to compete, just get strong and buff, I’m ok starting a touch above the floor. Even if I use the deadeners, simply setting the bar on the crossmembers to load/unload the first/last plate scratches the Rogue powder coat, so the UHMW is still a good idea, if I can find nice strips. That, or use the J-cups and then shift it down once a plate is on.

    Some thoughts on the side-to-side movement:
    1) Biggest concern is injury. If I drop the bar, and one side lands on the crossmember, it might roll in an awkward way towards me, though the deadblow plates shouldn’t bounce significantly.
    2) Damage to the plates might be possible. I could just imagine chipping a bit of a plate if a heavy weight came down just clipping the crossmember.
    3) If I wasn’t using the deadeners, then damage to the collars might be possible as well in a similar scenario to (2).

    Maybe I’m overthinking it...
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    Originally Posted by Corbets View Post
    As a taller guy who’s not planning to compete, just get strong and buff, I’m ok starting a touch above the floor. Even if I use the deadeners, simply setting the bar on the crossmembers to load/unload the first/last plate scratches the Rogue powder coat, so the UHMW is still a good idea, if I can find nice strips. That, or use the J-cups and then shift it down once a plate is on.

    Some thoughts on the side-to-side movement:
    1) Biggest concern is injury. If I drop the bar, and one side lands on the crossmember, it might roll in an awkward way towards me, though the deadblow plates shouldn’t bounce significantly.
    2) Damage to the plates might be possible. I could just imagine chipping a bit of a plate if a heavy weight came down just clipping the crossmember.
    3) If I wasn’t using the deadeners, then damage to the collars might be possible as well in a similar scenario to (2).

    Maybe I’m overthinking it...
    I've have the same rack (RML 690). I've pulled inside it a few times and I'm 6'3" so what most would consider tall.

    For loading/unloading just get down to 135lbs and then use the J cups for the last plates. I do that on the outside of the rack anyway.

    I wouldn't worry to much about it. 3x3" racks don't have as much clearance but pulling deads things don't move a lot laterally and you aren't near the uprights so just the bottom of the movement. If you need to reposition the bar between sets just roll one side then the other.

    Personally I'd rather pull outside the rack but should be fine I'd think.
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