If you’re setting up a home gym, dumbbells are undoubtedly going to be something you want to have on hand.
Dumbbells allow you to hit nearly every muscle in your body effectively, without taking up the space of a squat rack, and usually at a fraction of the cost.
But when it comes to dumbbells, there are a few different options to choose from.
You have your fixed dumbbells, selector-style dumbbells like, for example, the Bowflex Selecttech that many of you might be familiar with, and the style that I am currently using, dumbbell handles and weight plate combo.
The handle we are discussing today is a spinlock-style handle from Yes4All. We will also briefly talk about the plates that I use with these handles, which allow a wide range of resistance to use for different exercises.
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Dumbbell Handle Specs & Dimensions
These adjustable dumbbells are solid and durable. I have been using them multiple times per week since I first ordered them back in April 2020 and they have held up extremely well.
The price of these handles is very budget friendly at $24.51 at the time of publishing.
They may have discolored a bit since then but the spin-lock collars slide on just as smoothly as when I first got them.
Also, be sure to keep both the handles and the plates dry and away from moisture or else they will start to rust a bit as you can see here on mine. I was careless with mine, but they still work great.
The overall length of each handle is about 16.5 inches (41.9 cm).
Each sleeve allows for a loadable length of about 4.75 inches (12.1 cm) per side with the collar on the tip of each side of each dumbbell handle, and has a rubber gasket which helps to provide a solid grip.
Each handle weighs in at about 4.8 lbs (2.2 kg) each with the collars on.
This is good to know just in case you are using just the handle by itself for an exercise or want to include it in the overall amount of weight you are using on each dumbbell.
Each individual collar weights in at .6 oz (.02 kg) each for a total of 1.3 lbs (.6 kg) for both.
What Type of Plates Do I Use?
These dumbbell handles will fit any plate with a 1.15 inch (2.9 cm) hole.
I particularly like the charcoal gray plates from WF Athletic Supply found on Amazon.
You can get yourself a set of 4 of the 10 lb (4.6 kg) plates for $59 at the time of publishing, and a set of 25 lb (11.4 kg) plates for $73 at the time of publishing.
They are cast iron and have held up extremely well from constant, repeated use.
As I mentioned earlier, I do recommend keeping them dry, as exposing them to moisture and liquid will cause some rust a bit, as you can see on mine. Other than that, I have dropped them multiple times on my rubber matted floor and they have still kept the same shape as when I first got them.
The center holes of these plates are just shy of 1.25 inches (3.2 cm) and fit with very little room in between the hole and shaft. I like this because there is no clanking or jiggling going on when using the dumbbells as long as the spin-locks are on tight.
I also went and weighed each one of my 10 lb (4.6 kg) plates individually to see how precise they were to the weight stated and they all were right on the money so you know you are getting an accurate total when choosing your resistance on different exercises.
Each plate is 8 inches (20.3 cm) in diameter and .87 inches (2.21 cm) thick which is nice because each plate doesn’t take up that much space on each shaft.
Pros & Cons
As with most things, there are some pros and cons when it comes to using a spin-lock style adjustable dumbbell rather than some other types out there.
One major pro in my opinion is the ability to really load these up heavily compared to most other dial-adjusted models. There are some models out there that are capped at 90 lbs (41kg), with some offering expansion packs sold separately.
This is heavy enough for many people on all exercises, but for me personally, I like to go very heavy on my single-arm dumbbell rows, and this style of adjustable dumbbell allows me to do that using a combination of 10s and 25s.
Another pro is durability. You can be rough with these and drop them and they will be just fine whereas most other dial-adjusted dumbbells advise that you do not drop them. I have dropped this handle and plate combo from as high as just below waist level and they’ve been fine every time.
One of the cons of using this style of dumbbell is the bit of time it takes to do plate math to correctly load up the amount of weight you’d like to use, as well as having to put on and remove plates each time you switch exercises. This also makes it a poor choice for those who like to superset.
Another potential con to keep in mind is the fact that due to the shaft that the plates slide onto, you won’t have a flat surface to rest against your thigh when doing things like bench and shoulder presses while waiting to start your set as you do with a traditional dumbbell.
Some may find this inconvenient, but what I do is rest the plate on my thigh instead, and this works out pretty well as an alternative.
If you are also looking for an adjustable weight bench to go along with your home gym setup, check out this article I wrote reviewing the Flybird adjustable weight bench.
There were a few different options I had considered when trying to decide what style of dumbbell fit me best, and I am very happy with the choice I made.
I wanted something that would allow me to continually add weight as I needed to, was durable, wouldn’t take up a whole bunch of space, and wouldn’t break the bank. And this combination checked all of those boxes.
This set of adjustable dumbbells and plates have served me well through many training sessions and look to be in condition to last me a good while longer.
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Disclaimer: None of the information in this article is intended to be medical or health advice. Always consult with a qualified physician before taking part in any exercise or fitness regimen.