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How to Build a Squat Rack Out of Wood

Build Wood Squat Rack

Whatever your motivation might be to build your own power rack, there’s a right way to do it and a wrong way to do it, just like squats. Whether your motivation for having a squat rack at home is based on some Russian ‘squat every day’ training article that you read or your gym always has two or three guys lining up to use the squat rack when you want to use it, you need the best rack you can build.

If you have spent an hour online looking around to see what a good squat rack will cost, you’ll know that it’ll set you back around $500 and that’s without delivery. You may find something suitable on Craigslist but, depending where you are, it is going to cost you plenty to get it to your front door.

If the thought of a wooden power rack sounds crazy because you’ve seen pictures of guys using rickety squat racks built from some spare 2x4s that look like an accident about to happen, then you need to know that wood has an amazing compressive strength it. If your squat rack is built properly it will be able to handle an extremely heavy weight for many years.

The advantage of building a squat rack out of wood over a steel squat rack is that it cannot only be easily customized to fit the gym space you’ve allocated, but it’s quieter than any steel rack you might have. Most purchased steel squat racks also stand at least 90” tall, sometimes taller, which for low ceilings in a basement gym or garages would be impossible for a few commercial power racks on the market.

You’re only going to need a few of the most basic tools, a tape measure, a hand saw, corded electric drill with a standard set of drill bits, a very standard socket and ratchet set, a 1-1/8" diameter spade-bit (to cut the holes into the vertical legs) and lastly a floor space of around 8'x8' to work in.

You’re also going to need a table saw or a circular saw and various C-clamps and grippers to clamp pieces together, plus a large table to work on. You’re also going to need a sheet of 4x8 plywood which should be set up on some saw horses or a few 5 gallon buckets, this will make a very nice assembly bench where you can save time being down on your knees.

All the wood you are going to need will cost around $120 at Home Depot or Lowes, or any other good hardware store. Wood comes in different grades and is priced accordingly, the quality of the wood you purchase is insignificant except on the eight 2x6 boards you purchase for vertical legs. Select the good quality ‘framing grade’ wood for these 2 X 6 legs, free of knots and imperfections.

In conclusion it’s very possible to build your own wooden squat rack, you are going to need a few additional items, but you’re also going to need drawing plans so that you can fit it all together. The specific instructions are step by step and can be freely accessed online.

Your wooden squat rack will stand for years, whether you move it to another location or you keep it where it was built. You’re going to need either a barbell with weights or an Olympic bar. It is important to note the type of barbell you are going to be using on your new squat rack before you start building it because the drawings that come with the instructions freely available online are designed for a standard barbell and not an Olympic barbell.

If you got an Olympic bar, you’ll need to move both sides of the rack you built in by 2.5" so that the Olympic bar will clear both sides of your rack and be able to sit freely on the fittings you set into the wood. This is important to note; you should always measure the barbell you are going to be using before starting the assembly.

For more great build your own exercise equipment ideas checkout Fast & Easy Home Gym Plans

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