Homemade Squat Rack Build: Progress Update, Proposed Fixes & Upgrades

19 October 2016

I’ve got a critical issue with my proposed build that have stalled my progress:

  • the 1-1/4″ holes that I’ve drilled through the 2×6’s aren’t straight
  • I can’t find a bolt big enough to use as a rack

These problems are pretty significant (at least for me). This means that the spotter racks aren’t straight and would lead to unpredictable rolling of a potentially hazardous amounts of weight. It also means that I can’t actually find a viable solution to rack the weight!!!

I’m proposing a number of changes to the core build that will allow even greater strength and uniformity.

  1. sub the doubled 2×6’s for >3×3 perforated square tube
  2. add additional support to the top of the rack

The perforated square tube would rest on the 2×6 bottom then be secured by 2×6’s on either side. I would need 2 sets of really long bolts that would be the same diameter as the perforations. This change would greatly add the strength of this rack, with the major weak spots being the joints where the square tube meets the 2×6’s.

The additional support would entail similar securing as the bottom then would go straight across and be secured to the 2×4 studs in the wall. The whole rack would be immovable and could be considered a semi permanent fixture.

I will need to price out 4-80″ 3×3 perforated square tubes to see if this is a possible fix for my build. I’m a bit busy with cleaning out the extra rooms and moving everything, so the pricing and the actual build will have to wait until next week at the earliest. I will update this post with additional costs as they become available.

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17 September 2016

All my necessary renos have been completed, now all that remains are my optional ones. I’ve spent all day cleaning out the spare room and taking pictures for a rental ad (a tax deductible cost if you didn’t already know). Its funny, all the weird random shit you accumulate and toss into storage only to forget its very existence. For instance, I’ve found a box of scopes! I remember purchasing a box of 6 various scopes for $200. I mounted the Redfield scope that I wanted and proceeded to store the rest of them -I am uncertain of my intentions at the time (perhaps to let them accumulate in value??? hahahah), but here I am with a box of scopes and no rifles to mount them to.

I’ll throw these guys up on kijiji, CGN, and outdoorsmen for $80-$100 each, which should net me a pretty good margin. My net will still be positive if I hit these numbers, even counting the Redfield that I’ll be taking against my bottomline. I’m starting to think that there are a few good value propositions around Calgary, if I can keep my eyes open for stuff like this and the YYC Chapel Knife sale, then flip some of the good stuff on kijiji, eBay, etc. I might be able to make a few easy bucks on the side… why I’m only thinking about this now is beyond me.


I’ve begun my power rack build, inspired by the good people at Home-Gym-Bodybuilding. I’ll be following their build here for which they have thoughtfully laid out engineering drawings in a delightful pdf format here.

Yesterday I sourced materials from Rona costing a total of $137.26 CAD, the majority of the costs were from the 60″ 3/4″ID black steel pipe @ $23.09 CAD (5% HST included) each -essentially 49.74% of my current materials costs are going to these 3 pipes. I’m alright with these high materials costs as these pipes will be potentially taking significant weight, representing the lower safety bars and the pull up bar.

I haven’t even sourced the full set of materials yet, but those remaining parts should only be incidental as it only includes some nuts & bolts (maybe a few sets of cable pullies if I add a cable crossover system in the future). Fortunately these costs are also tax deductible (building upgrades) as this is a new basement fixture available for tenant use. The weights and equipment itself will be a whole other story however. I will have to source an olympic bar, plates, and a bench to complete this set, and to round out the basement gym I’d also like to add a 100lb heavy bag.


To Do:

  • finalize clean out of spare room
    • store roommate’s stuff in the basement
    • general cleaning
    • new blinds
  • general house cleanup
    • kitchen sink blinds
    • put away tools
    • clean table
    • lightbulbs (bathroom, stove)
    • electric outlet covers x3
  • backyard cleanup
    • pull weeds
    • mow lawn
    • research grass seed/rolls cost
  • tenant ad photos
    • bedroom
    • shared washroom
    • 360° living room/kitchen photo
    • foosball room photo
    • laundry room photo
    • front house photo
    • patio photo
    • backyard photo
  • power rack build