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Titan Questions!

Discussion in 'Gym Equipment' started by Crunchdaddy, Mar 9, 2008.

  1. Crunchdaddy

    Crunchdaddy Active Member

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    First off, I am this close (holds index finger and thumb about 1 mm apart) to purchasing a Titan. I may have a number of questions, but no doubt all the positive reviews have me convinced this is a great quality machine. Having said that, I’ve been burned by a few internet exercise equipment purchases, so I really would like to bombard the board here with a number of questions. Here goes:

    1. Ease of Interchangeability – How easy is it to switch between exercises? Leg Curls, Preacher, Leg Press, high/low pulleys, hack squat, etc – they all seem to involve some kind of change-out of parts. How difficult is it? Is it some sort of pin-like lock? Or do I need a wrench/screwdriver/etc?

    2. Smoothness of Smith – Is there a lot of friction on the smith? I use a Fitness Gear machine/smith with linear bearings. I thought it was buttery smooth, and then I went to a health club for a few months and was blown away by how frictionless the plain old commercial smith’s were. It made me realize that some small elbow/shoulder/etc pain may have been due to a smith that just wasn’t as smooth as I thought. With the huge guide rods, is there no “twisting” of the rods? I also thought I saw an option for linear bearings instead of rollers, but why?

    3. Smoothness of Pulleys – Are the pulleys commercial smooth and friction free? See my same comments above on Smith – same questions here

    4. Nuances of various exercises – Any weird nuances on some of the listed exercises? For example, on the leg press, it looks like you slide between the Smith handles as you go back and forth. It seems like a big man might run right into the handles during the press. Has this type of issue caused anyone any problems?

    5. Shoulder Exercises – Can you do behind the neck shoulder presses with a completely upright bench back? Also, is there any way to do machine-type sit-down delt raises? I just can’t seem to get the same stress directly on my delts as I do in the little sit-down delt machines. I have a crappy one I bought that also functions as a shoulder press, and it does the job, but I would love to save the room and junk it. Is there some way to rig a Titan’s leg curl or some other attachment to do this exercise?

    6. Long term parts - How well has this been selling? It’s a decent chunk of change and I would hate to not be able to get parts long term.

    7. Fresno, CA– Any individuals or retailers or distributors within a few hours of Fresno that would allow me to take a look?

    Honestly, the Titan looks awesome, the best base for a home gym that I’ve ever seen. I currently have my Fitness Gear rack/smith/pulleys along with an Elliptical, Lamar Leg Press and a no name Shoulder Press/Delt machine. I’ve been into fitness for 30 years now and plan on it for the rest of my life. Lifting weights is the core of my workouts and versatility, reliability and quality are more important than ever at my age. I’d love to get some peace of mind on the topics above before making the plunge. We may buy a new house here in the next month, which means I’m waiting on that anyways (do not make large purchases when buying a house), but I want to be prepared to pull the trigger the second I can.

    So, thanks any and all for your input!
     
  2. digitalnebula

    digitalnebula Plagiarist

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    After a few workouts, it gets easier and easier...Just like at a new gym, you gotta get to know the terrain and get your workouts laid out.

    This is a tough one to answer. Its about perception. One man's butter can be another man's chunky peanut butter....
    Personally, I think the Titan has a little more friction in its motion than a good commercial smith...That being said, I have used commercial smiths that were crap and the Titan blows them out of the water....
    I have no answer for the bearings question. I got mine nearly 3 years ago and it was not an option then.

    Again, I would say not quite. They are not as "heavy duty" as something you would see at the gym. In saying this, remember that the pulley weight is driven by the smith. So maybe the pulleys are perfect but the smith makes them feel of slightly less quality than good commercial equipment.

    I can get a claustrophbic feeling when doing dumbell exercises...like the hooks are going to eat my hands. I got another adjustable bench to do dumbell work for this reason. But that is just a me thing...it may not bother anyone else.

    I'm not a huge fan of doing military presses on the Titan (using the smith). You cannot get the bench upright in a good position for them....
    Delt raises...no...unless you get really creative with the leg curl and do them one arm at a time.... Just do dumbell laterals...


    Ask Brian Butler at Fitcore.

    My overall (and quick summary) overview would be: The Titan will do many things and do them quite well. I think it will provide a great foundation to your home gym.... You will still want a good set of dumbells in order to ensure that you can do all of the exercises and angles necessary... but your fitness goals are personal and you need to make sure that the Titan is the road that will get you to where you want to go.

    There is no home gym that is going to be perfect in every respect. That is why commercial gyms have to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on equipment....I keep on adding to my home gym even though I have a Titan...I recently got a half rack and some bumper plates to do olympic lifts because that is where I am going at the moment...

    This is a big decision. And my input is just one man's opinion...
     
    #2 digitalnebula, Mar 10, 2008
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2008
  3. Crownshep

    Crownshep Active Member

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    Some interesting and well thought out questions,all very similar to what i had in mind before i bought my titan.I`m the same as you in regards to having been training 30 years,i used to compete on a national level in the UK and considered myself pretty strong on most basic exercises,so i was a little worried about how sturdy this "home gym" would be.Trust me,this things a tank.I`ll go through your points by number,so...
    1.It takes about a week to understand where everything goes,but you`ll soon be able to plan from one exercise to the next to save a bit of time between exercises.Have a look on my link to see how i set mine up and on page 3 you get a close up of the locking mechanism.
    http://ironage.us/yabbse/index.php?topic=13534.0

    2.Smoother than some i`ve used,and on par with the best i`ve used.

    3.Same as above.

    4.You would have to be very overweight for the handles to touch you on the sliding leg press,and even then you could move the handles up or down the smith to stay out the way.

    5.You can do behind the neck press with the bench all the way back,if i do a front press,i have to angle the bench back slightly.If you have the pulley options you can do seated side laterals using the botoom cables.I`ve also just made myself some attachments for laterals using a short length of chain,passed through a 6 inch piece of pipe,and foam taped round the pipe.I position the foam handle on my elbow and do laterals like that using the pulleys.I`ve also used the leg curl pad against my elbow as you`ve suggested.

    6.I`m hoping to get quite a few years worth out of it before anything needs replacing,like i said,its like a tank.

    7.I live in the UK,so unless you come over to England i can`t help you on that one.:)
     
  4. Crunchdaddy

    Crunchdaddy Active Member

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    Wow, some great feedback here. Let me try to continue the conversation a bit.

    First, Crownshep, very nice posts you linked. The close-ups and explainations were fantastic. A few more follow-ups:

    So, what about some of the attachments, like the preacher? Does it easily slide in/out or does it simply get moved out of the way? Does anything take a special tool/unscrewing to remove/add?

    I know I keep harping on this, but would you call it "fairly frictionless?" Commercial Smith's I've used feel like they're not even on a post - they glide and even carry momentum past your push point. My home Smith feels way different. I'm not sure I'm explaining myself very well, but this is so important for me with aging joints.

    What about the close-grip attachment? Is it easy to remove, since it seems like it would have to be removed for certain exercises such as Leg Press.

    Very cool!

    Maybe someday, I'm always up for a good pint!

    Are you still diligently using your Titan? A lot of the posts I'm seeing are from 1-2 years ago (1.5 years for yours), and I'm wondering if you're still feeling like you're getting excellent, varied workouts from it.

    Thanks again for all the info. This Titan looks absolutely amazing.
     
  5. Crownshep

    Crownshep Active Member

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    With the preacher bench i leave it in the cross supports all the time and do preachers stood up,and just remove the cross supports out the safety rack when i`m not using it.All attachments take a second to put in and out and no tools are needed whatsoever.

    First time i used the smith i thought it felt hard,but i realized i`d not trained for a year due to work commitments,so i was therefore a lot weaker,plus the empty smith with the handles weighs something like 96lbs,so its like having an olympic bar with a 10kg plate each side.which for a first warm up set on shoulder press can feel quite heavy.I then tried the leg press attachments for the vertical leg press,then i realized how smooth it was.It did feel pretty friction-less.

    I`ve not got the close grip attachment,but everything takes a second to change on the titan.

    If you do come to the UK for a pint,you can pay,seeing as how i`ve bought a titan and got no money left.:)

    Your final post contains the key magic word for this equipment,and that is VARIED.I`m more enthusiastic about it now than when i first bought it,as i`m always coming up with a new variation of an exercise to do on the machine.Today for instance i used the leg curl arm attachment and bought it over towards the smith and locked it in place in the 1 o clock position.I put a short length of chain and a cable handle on this,sat facing it on the bench,and did reverse grip pushdowns for triceps.

    Any other questions,just let me know.
     
  6. Crownshep

    Crownshep Active Member

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    One thing to remember with the pulleys is that they fit into the side holes in the smith,so you can set the start position of where the handles will be if you do a cable side lateral.If you want to start the exercise with your hands by your side,put the pulleys in number 6-7,if you want to start with your hands half way up,put the pulleys in number 3-4.And for a bit of variation start the exercise right at the top and just move the weight 3-4 inches in the top position by putting the pulleys in number 1.
     
  7. Crunchdaddy

    Crunchdaddy Active Member

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    Okay, just a few more:

    1. Preacher with a stand alone curl bar - how do you get it up with no rack?

    2. Military press (front) - possible with the back of the bench all the way up?

    3. Are the safety spotters long enough to be comfortable for squats?

    4. How much weight have you pushed on it? I'm thinking leg presses in particular.

    5. It looks like the Smith can only travel up about halfway before it hits the "Titan" panel. Does this cause any problems for cable exercises using the Smith?

    6. What's you current favorite exercise?

    Well, I'm pretty much there. I don't have a huge space for my workout room, so getting multiple commercial machines just isn't an option (rack, smith, cables, etc). The Titan seems to have it all covered anyways! Still working on the wife though and the price tag (why can't bonus time be now?!).

    Thanks again!
     
  8. Crownshep

    Crownshep Active Member

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    1/If you look on my link to the ironage page,on page 4 i am doing preachers using the leg ext attachment,thats one way,the other is to have the safety spotters on the rear rack and preacher on the middle rack.
    2/Yes
    3/Again,look at the ironage link,page 4,and the last two pics are the spotters,there plenty long enough.
    4/I like to do partial reps now and again on leg press and i`ve had 10 plates a side.I know it says 650 max but its held that weight no problem.Some of my plates are homemade from steel and weigh a lot more than a normal plate thats why i can get more weight on for the length of the bar.Plus,if you need extra weight,i put the dipping bars in the smith and slide the plates over them.
    5/The smith misses the TITAN panel,you`ve got plenty of range of motion.
    6/The cable side laterals starting from mid way.
     
  9. Crownshep

    Crownshep Active Member

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    On page 2 and 3 you can see some of the steel plates i`ve made for myself,plus some other "inventions" i`ve made to use on the TITAN.The plates are no wider than a normal cast iron plate but weigh a lot more,thats why i can put the equivalent weight of 10 plates a side on leg press.And on the vertical leg press 10 plates feels like 20 plates on a 45 degree gym leg press.
    http://ironage.us/yabbse/index.php?topic=15427.20
     

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