The Rep Fitness Elite Excalibur Bar – The best sub-$300 barbell that you can buy.
- 215k psi Tensile & 200k psi Yield Strength!!!
- 28mm diameter shaft
- IPF & IWF Markings w/ medium knurl depth (No center)
- Bushing design
- Lifetime warranty
I first came onto the Rep Fitness Excalibur during the search for my first crossfit barbell. While all the specifications sold me on the bar, the name was unknown to me, so I went with the Rogue Ohio bar instead. Fast forward 5 or so months later, my curiosity got the best of me, and I ended up with an Excalibur in addition to my Ohio bar. I hate to think that my decision in the first place to order the Ohio bar wasn’t the right decision; the Rep Fitness Excalibur is the best bar that I’ve used and owned. Honestly, if there was more literature or videos on the Excalibur at the time, I’m not sure my original decision would have been the same. It’s pretty fair to say that the Rep Fitness Excalibur has a lot going for it on paper. I don’t even know of another bar that has even close to the same tensile strength in a bar that costs under $300. The closest competitor is probably the Pendlay Nexgen HD, coming in at 190K PSI, but costing almost $50 more (too bad the MDUSA sale is over on them). Stat for stat, it pretty much demolishes anything in the $300 range. Let me reassure you that this bar doesn’t just talk to the talk.
28mm diameter shaft, Olympic standard diameter. 28.5mm, the standard for most crossfit barbells. That .5″ doesn’t sound like it would make a big difference, but it does, especially if you’re like me and you have little hands. Quite honestly, this is one of the main reasons I ended up with the Excalibur (I was contemplating the Pendlay as well). The knurling is medium to light and feels great in the hand; it doesn’t feel as “scratchy” as the Ohio bar’s, not as “sharp” as the Again Faster or Pendlay, maybe somewhere in between those bars. Really just depends on what you’re looking for, but I feel like the Ohio bar has the finest pattern, so it’s still my favorite. The knurl continues all the way into the sleeve, which should be good for you people with a wider snatch grip. Oh, the bar holds chalk REALLY well.
The build quality: Excellent. I was worried about not knowing where this bar was sourced, but rest assured, this bar does not feel cheaply manufactured. The sound when dropped sounds like the Rogue Ohio, just a dead blow; no rattling here. On top of that, just spinning the collars with the bar on the rack yields pure silence. The spin? You could be fooled into thinking that this is a bearing bar. The spin is extremely smooth and fast, though it’s just a bushing bar. Pulling under the bar doing some lighter (full) snatches was no problem. In fact, a few guys at the box hit snatch PR’s using this bar the other day. Coincidence? Probably….but who knows. I used the bar earlier today for some back squats and shoulder to overhead; it performed just fine for those movements as well. No worries about putting a permanent bend in it with that steel strength.
What do I not like about this bar? Not much, but there are a few things. First, as stated above, I have no clue where this bar is manufactured. I, like most, prefer for my gear to be made in the U.S.A., but I can’t really knock the quality of this bar either, where ever it’s being made. Secondly, while I’m glad they added some kind of rifling to the sleeves so that plates stay on better, sadly it still doesn’t work all that well. Plates (competition and bumpers) slide right on and off without any kind of force. This could be viewed as a good or bad thing. For me, since I’m too lazy to slap some collars on most of the time, it’s a bad thing. I like bright zinc, but maybe add a black zinc color option somewhere down the line?
That’s really it, this bar is a lot of good and hardly any bad. Having used all the bars that are within the same price point, I can honestly say that this is the best performing of them all. Don’t be afraid of ordering from Rep Fitness, due to them not being one of the bigger names in crossfit equipment. Having talked to them a few times, I can only say positive things about their customer service. If you’re looking for an excellent barbell that will probably last you a lifetime, all for a measly $289, go for the Rep Fitness Excalibur.
You can get your Rep Fitness Excalibur bar here: