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  1. #1
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    Rogue Adjustable Bench 2.0 and AB-2/3

    Hey fellas - I'm in a bit of a unique position where I currently have both the Rogue Adjustable Bench 2.0 and the Rogue AB-3 in my garage (in addition to my Rogue bolt together flat utility bench)



    Basically what happened was I ordered the Adjustable Bench 2.0 during Black Friday. I went back and forth between the 2.0 and the AB-2 dozens of times and ultimately decided that I would put the extra $270 to the adjustable monolifts.

    When I received the shipment the 2.0 was totally messed up (detailed all of this in the Black Friday thread). It had holes in the padding from where Rogue stacked landmine handles on top of the bench (in boxes) and then UPS stacked something on top of my pallet which pushed the handles through both cardboard boxes and into the bench padding. The vinyl didn’t break but there are permanent craters in the foam padding. This is how my pallet arrived.



    The bench also had a warped spine (probably a manufacturing issue) causing the spine to be off center and rub against the ladder when adjusting positions. Long story short, Rogue said they would replace the whole bench.

    During this time, I was able to try out the 2.0 and found I didn’t really like it. It feels overbuilt, but excessively so. First, it is unnecessarily heavy at 128lbs. Second, the wheels are cheap, hard plastic and squeal like crazy. This makes it annoying to maneuver in and out of the rack. Also, the joints just feel stuck. I do realize that it’s possible things were overly tightened out of the factory so they might become smoother over time, but it just turned me off.

    So… I contacted Rogue again and asked them since they were going to ship me a new bench if I could just upgrade to the AB-3 (when spending $815 on the AB-2 why not spend the extra $120 and get a decline option?) and send them back the busted 2.0 in the AB-3 box to which they said yes, of course. More money for them.

    Fast forward a few days and I received the AB-3 yesterday. Must be my bad luck or my OCDness but I noticed this one also has a warped curved thing (not sure what to call it) so in the inclined positions the pop pin is less than halfway through the hole. It’s enough to make me nervous, particularly doing ab work in the decline position as there is a lot of movement on the bench. Anyways, sent them pics and they are currently deciding what to do. Someone in the AB-2 reviews did mention this as well but I thought it was a one off situation. Guess not.





    So…I’m planning to write some of my thoughts here about different aspects of each bench. This is not to compare them head to head as I know they aren’t in the same price range, but perhaps someone down the line is considering one or both of them and would like to hear pros and cons of each in relation to each other.

    Feel free to leave a comment here if you want to see any specific photos you want to see or have any questions about comparing the 2 benches. My plan is to get the AB-3 fixed and ship back the 2.0. Although, after so much headache I kind of wish I went with the Legend 3-way despite the long lead time and no decline option (not a fan of the big butt pad in the 4-way).

    Pad Gap
    AB-2/3
    The first thing you will notice when you unbox this bench is the massive pad gap. It is literally the biggest gap I have ever seen. They use sloped edges to make it look smaller, but from peak to peak it is a full 6”. This bothers me from both a functional and aesthetic perspective. At 5’10” with a long torso and low arch I am able to just get my body on the back pad for flat benching so it is ok, but if I were taller either my butt would be in the gap or my head would be hanging off the bench. For many people, this is a non-starter. I also have a Rogue flat bench so I wasn’t too worried about using it to flat bench, although it’d be nice to just have 1 bench seeing how its so easy to wheel in and out.



    2.0
    Probably the best feature of this bench is the minimal pad gap. The gap is 1” and looks smaller because the hinge is flush with the pads. The flush hinge is actually a small downside in my eyes though as I have more than once felt the hinge press into my tailbone when getting up from the flat position. I suppose this could be avoided by changing butt placement.



    Weight
    AB-2/3
    Weight is 94lbs which is sturdy without being too heavy.

    2.0
    Like I mentioned above, the weight of the 2.0 is a downside for me. I see no reason that the bench should be over 100lbs. I found the wheels overly tight and squeaky so wheeling it in and out of the rack was annoying with the bench weighing 128lbs. Even adjusting the bench is annoying.

    Height
    AB-2/3
    Listed on Rogue at 18”. I emailed Rogue about this as I was worried it was 19” according to Pando’s review and they said slightly over 18.5”. Measured mine at 18.25” so was pleased with that. You also have the option of removing the rubber feet (1”) which would bring it down to 17.25” which would then be even lower than the 2.0 and the flat bench.



    2.0
    Listed on Rogue at 17.5”. Measured mine at 17.5”. You can remove the 1” rubber feet on the front, but there are no feet on the rear so your bench would be slightly inclined in the flat position. Don’t think anyone will do that.



    I have been using the Rogue bolt together utility bench which is 18” and am fine with either the 18.25” height of the AB-3 or the 17.5” height of the 2.0. so will probably not mess with removing the rubber feet.
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  2. #2
    Registered User fatal11's Avatar
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    Width
    AB-2/3
    Listed as 12” pad width measured slightly wider. Got used to the utility bench which is also 12” wide so definitely prefer wider.



    2.0
    Listed on Rogue at 11.25” pad width but measured at 11”. Better than 10”, but not as good as 12”.



    Adjustability
    AB-2/3
    Obviously this is one of the main selling points of the bench. You can adjust it 50 different ways (6 seat and 9 back). Adjustments are made easily by pulling out the pop pin and swiveling the back or seat. The joints are super smooth and it is very smooth and easy to adjust.

    2.0
    Whether it’s the heaviness of the spine or the tightness of the joints, I found it difficult to adjust the bench. The back is somewhat easier as you tilt the back up and the roller slides into place. However, the back positioning felt suboptimal as I found myself wanting to position myself somewhere between the 1st and 2nd notches for incline pressing.
    The seat adjustment is terrible as you pull the seat and the whole roller thing comes with it and you have to push it back down. Also, I felt really limited by the seat only having 2 positions, flat and inclined. The inclined position feels way too low for me. Would like to see a 3rd position more inclined.

    Here is a photo in an inclined position I would use for incline dumbbell pressing. Notice how flat the inclined position of the 2.0 is.



    Wheels
    AB-2/3
    Don’t know when they upgraded the wheels but these new ones are great. Sturdy yet soft. They spin great and are quiet. Makes moving the bench smooth and easy. I think they even have an extra hole to move the wheels up higher in the event you do want to remove the rubber feet so the wheels don’t touch the floor.



    2.0
    Cheap, squeaky, hard plastic wheels.



    Handle
    AB-2/3
    The handle is designed to just flops around and slide freely side to side. I’m not really sure why it is designed this way, but in my mind it is a design flaw. In the center position, where it should be, if you let go of the handle when the seat is inclined, it smashes into the curved metal of the seat adjuster creating small dents in the handle. You can see these notches already on this brand new bench. These notches go on to scratch your hand every time you grab it. I guess will have to gingerly let down the handle from now on instead of letting it free fall.



    Rogue knows this is an issue and ships the handle covered in foam so it arrives without dents. However, this does not help in use as obviously you take the foam off. I also cannot think of a reason it should be allowed to slide from side to side. If you have it to the side and pull up on the handle, it scratches against the side of the seat bottom and again damages both the handle and the frame. You can already see a small scratch in the frame powdercoat to the left of the handle from where this happened to me.





    2.0
    Even though it makes the footprint slightly longer, I like the handle on the 2.0. It is simple and does the job. I don’t see why they had to make their lives difficult getting fancy on the AB-2/3.
    Last edited by fatal11; 12-22-2016 at 07:54 PM. Reason: moved decline to next post
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  3. #3
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    Decline
    AB-3
    Only applicable to the AB-3, the $120 decline option is what people were claiming was a downside to the AB-2. I wasn’t planning on using it for decline pressing, but I did try some declined ab work last night. It’s a super smart design where you are reverse from normal FID benches and sit on the back pad. This makes it super easy to get into pretty much any declined angle you want whereas most FID benches are limited to -10 degrees.



    You can also still wheel the bench around with the foot brace attached only at a much lower angle.

    Edit: I really really like having the decline option and think its good deal for $120. So far I've only used it for ab work, but it's awesome being able to go almost vertical. I think I'll probably keep the foot brace attached... it makes it harder to wheel around and heavier to adjust the backrest, but it's great being able to superset ab work.

    Some more pics of the foot brace:



    Is it too much to ask for Rogue to powdercoat this part here?



    They did powercoat part of the same tube on the backside and they know exactly where they need to stop so it doesn't rub against the tube on the backrest since there's only 1 hole



    AB-2/2.0
    Not applicable

    Footprint Comparison
    The AB-2/3's footprint is 51.25” x 22.5” and the 2.0 is 54.5" x 24.5". The difference might not seem like a lot, but in a small garage, it makes a pretty big difference.



    Last edited by fatal11; 12-22-2016 at 07:53 PM.
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    This is a good comparison and useful. Appreciate the time. A couple thoughts:

    On the AB 2/3 I think the pin 1/2 way through is purposeful and intended. Someone else brought this up before and I think a few with fabrication knowledge opined that it is rock solid and no need.

    I own the Adjustable 1.0. Wheels don't squeak. Back is easy to adjust and super solid without any wiggle in position. Seat adjustment is functional and rock solid but basically 2 positions by rotating a support out of the way (not as cool as a pop pin but works for sure). Handle is a welded loop and not nearly as sexy but it's fixed and works. I love it along with the height. The back pad is long enough that I have good margin to avoid any pad gap (I'm 6'3") by setting up above the seat. I have a separate flat bench but that's another story as I basically just use this right now. I like the firmness too.

    Not sure what happened with your's being squeaky and tight to adjust the back. Maybe oil and loosen things some if you intend to keep it?
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    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    Width
    AB-2/3
    Listed as 12” pad width measured slightly wider. Got used to the utility bench which is also 12” wide so definitely prefer wider.......
    Awesome info, unfortunately on spread
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    Registered User fatal11's Avatar
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    My thinking for why it is not on purpose:

    1) the seat pin goes all the way through



    2) the back pin goes almost all the way through in the flat position



    3) the first thing the rep asked me is if the curved thing was bent and lo and behold (they should be right on top of each other). It doesn't look like that much of a difference but you can see if the pin is perfectly set to stop at the end of the curved thing, the amount that it is shifted means its barely hanging on. I'd say maybe 1/3 of the way through the hole at the most inclined setting and 1/2 way at a regular incline angle.



    It probably wouldn't worry me that much if just incline pressing because you don't move around that much and its just under heavy somewhat static load, but doing decline ab work was scary because you can hear the curved piece rattling around the pin.

    Definitely not keeping the 2.0 with the holes in the pad and the misaligned spine scraping the ladder



    Likely will just stick with the AB-3 at this point if they are able to fix the pin issue. I do like all the settings, maneuverability, pad width, smaller footprint and decline option. If they can't or won't fix it maybe I'll return both and get the Legend 3 way or Rae Crowther (is the pad gap as big on this??).
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    Couple of notes from an AB2 owner:
    Flop down handle: makes a heck of a lot more sense than the AB2 L handle that is offset to the right side. I would call the AB3 an improvement.

    Wheels: very cool, my AB2 has the cheap squeaky ones, but it's not a huge deal.

    Pad gap: I'm 6' and have no problems benching on the back part of the bench only. Pad gap completely disappears on all levels of incline too.

    Spline: I don't recall having any issues with my back adjustment spline as you call it, but don't think I have any up close pics for comparison.
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    I appreciate detailed direct comparisons like this, great work.

    But it looks like the pad-gap is getting bigger since the last time it was measured in a review:

    Originally Posted by rpark View Post
    Pad gap 5 1/2"
    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    Pad Gap
    AB-2/3
    The first thing you will notice when you unbox this bench is the massive pad gap. It is literally the biggest gap I have ever seen. They use sloped edges to make it look smaller, but from peak to peak it is a full 6”. This bothers me from both a functional and aesthetic perspective.
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    Originally Posted by rpark View Post
    Couple of notes from an AB2 owner:
    Flop down handle: makes a heck of a lot more sense than the AB2 L handle that is offset to the right side. I would call the AB3 an improvement.

    Wheels: very cool, my AB2 has the cheap squeaky ones, but it's not a huge deal.

    Pad gap: I'm 6' and have no problems benching on the back part of the bench only. Pad gap completely disappears on all levels of incline too.

    Spline: I don't recall having any issues with my back adjustment spline as you call it, but don't think I have any up close pics for comparison.
    Do you know if your pop pins go all the way through the slot?

    I think the handle would make more sense if it didn't slide side to side and maybe if the back were rubber or something so it wouldn't get chipped when hitting the seat spline (is that what the curved thing is called?).
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    I'm fairly certain my pop pins do NOT insert 100%, I want to say maybe 50% into hole. But to date, I've experience zero problems with the pop pins.
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    In regards to the pop-pin and the warped selector plate. Pin should go through if it's all correct. What happens is the material to make the selector plate is a large steel plate (3/8" or 1/2" it looks like). These plates are almost never flat. They're huge (8'x40'' in some cases) and have a very noticeable bow. When you laser cut a part in this, especially a long part, you run the risk of having that same bow in the part, depending where it's cut in the plate. Anyone who has my monolift hooks will understand why the arms are made from two 1/2" plates laminated together. This is because both halves are mirrored from the other and when clamped and welded together it completely eleiminates this bow and you end up with a perfectly flat part. If they were made from just one piece (which would be a lot cheaper), they would always have a warp in them since they're very long. Since the selector plate is also one piece, you have to live with this bow. Other option is to get it on a press and bend it enough to bring it back straight. Time consuming.
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    Originally Posted by Mech6 View Post
    In regards to the pop-pin and the warped selector plate. Pin should go through if it's all correct. What happens is the material to make the selector plate is a large steel plate (3/8" or 1/2" it looks like). These plates are almost never flat. They're huge (8'x40'' in some cases) and have a very noticeable bow. When you laser cut a part in this, especially a long part, you run the risk of having that same bow in the part, depending where it's cut in the plate. Anyone who has my monolift hooks will understand why the arms are made from two 1/2" plates laminated together. This is because both halves are mirrored from the other and when clamped and welded together it completely eleiminates this bow and you end up with a perfectly flat part. If they were made from just one piece (which would be a lot cheaper), they would always have a warp in them since they're very long. Since the selector plate is also one piece, you have to live with this bow. Other option is to get it on a press and bend it enough to bring it back straight. Time consuming.
    Thanks for the info Mech. If the bow is inevitable, I would suggest Rogue make the pop pin longer. It doesn't even come close to hitting the other side of the frame and they could just eliminate this half in problem as it would simply be fully in or sticking out the other side a little.
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    Awesome photos and info. Kinda funny, but the thing that grabbed me most was those sweet new AB2/3 wheels! Pretty sweet upgrade, IMO.. lol.
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    That pad gap tho...wow. What was rogue thinking?
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    Hm, interesting. Update from Rogue on the plate selector warping. In my email I stated the pin was less than halfway through the slot (I hadn't measured it, just eyeballed). Will try to take some measurements.

    "Again, we wanted to thank you for you patience with this matter, as our manufacturing team was able to look into this further for you.

    After following up with them, they stated this is normal on this item, as there is some minor fluctuation between parts but as long as there is >50% of the spine hitting the pin it isn't an issue.

    It seems like the most drastic variance is at the top of the adjustment and it gets better as the backrest gets closer to horizontal, but it is still having >50% of the spine make contact.

    They did confirm that there isn't any type of safety concern with what you are observing, and if yo do have any stability issues with the bench in the future, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

    Please let us know if you have any additional questions or concerns."

    Not entirely happy with my $935 purchase...
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    I enjoyed reading your findings, thank's for the very detailed comparison.
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    Originally Posted by thejosef View Post
    Awesome photos and info. Kinda funny, but the thing that grabbed me most was those sweet new AB2/3 wheels! Pretty sweet upgrade, IMO.. lol.
    LOL - I know. I was looking at my Adjustable 1.0 and wondering if I could upgrade to those wheels. And no I'm not joking!
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    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    Not entirely happy with my $935 purchase...
    Fortunately you will never bench from underneath the pad. It's a good bench, it'll grow on you.
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    Originally Posted by rpark View Post
    Fortunately you will never bench from underneath the pad. It's a good bench, it'll grow on you.
    Not sure what you mean but again, I'm not really all that worried about incline (or even decline) benching given the nature of the movement. I'm worried about declined ab work as you rock the bench very hard against that pin with your entire bodyweight, the weight of the backrest + foot catch and any potential medicine ball / weights. It's a lot of movement. Rogue guy stated >50% is acceptable. I will try to take some measurements, but at what point do you start to worry? 40%? 25%? 10%?

    According to Rogue at 50% I'm not supposed to worry at all but everyone who says that is not really moving the backpad much (incline pressing on AB-2). There are no reviews yet on the AB-3.
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    I was really on the fence about getting an AB-3 bench because I cant find an original nebula 1080 foot attachment anywhere. Was going to sell my Nebula and get the AB-3. After seeing your review I am glad I didnt sell my Nebula and buy one of these AB-3 benches.

    I was hoping RC would have free shipping on BF this year but I watched their site like a hawk and did not see any incentives at all this year. I'm ok spending 200 bucks on their foot utility but i'm not about to spend 50 bucks just to ship it.

    Thanks for the info, much appreciated!
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    Very interesting on the AB-3 bend in the selector bar. My AB-2 is dead straight and the selector goes all the way through for the entire length of it.

    I would be upset about this as well on a bench that expensive.
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    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    Not sure what you mean but again, I'm not really all that worried about incline (or even decline) benching given the nature of the movement. I'm worried about declined ab work as you rock the bench very hard against that pin with your entire bodyweight, the weight of the backrest + foot catch and any potential medicine ball / weights. It's a lot of movement. Rogue guy stated >50% is acceptable. I will try to take some measurements, but at what point do you start to worry? 40%? 25%? 10%?

    According to Rogue at 50% I'm not supposed to worry at all but everyone who says that is not really moving the backpad much (incline pressing on AB-2). There are no reviews yet on the AB-3.
    Great review. If you are not happy then tell them to take the bench back. you mentioned the legend 3 way and although it does not decline you will be very happy with it.
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    Probably rogue can send a new back support arm, no a big deal. This bench much better that the legend 3 way
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    Originally Posted by julces View Post
    Probably rogue can send a new back support arm, no a big deal. This bench much better that the legend 3 way
    I basically said there were two solutions: a new (straight) plate selector thing or a longer pin (or both). I pasted their response above. Basically they said it's normal and I won't be getting either.
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    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    Thanks for the info Mech. If the bow is inevitable, I would suggest Rogue make the pop pin longer. It doesn't even come close to hitting the other side of the frame and they could just eliminate this half in problem as it would simply be fully in or sticking out the other side a little.
    Again, they're stuck because they buy the pop-pins. All manufacturers (and there are quite a few) make them 9/16" or 5/8" long. Making custom pop-pins would drive up the cost of the unit.
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    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    Hm, interesting. Update from Rogue on the plate selector warping. In my email I stated the pin was less than halfway through the slot (I hadn't measured it, just eyeballed). Will try to take some measurements.

    "Again, we wanted to thank you for you patience with this matter, as our manufacturing team was able to look into this further for you.

    After following up with them, they stated this is normal on this item, as there is some minor fluctuation between parts but as long as there is >50% of the spine hitting the pin it isn't an issue.

    It seems like the most drastic variance is at the top of the adjustment and it gets better as the backrest gets closer to horizontal, but it is still having >50% of the spine make contact.

    They did confirm that there isn't any type of safety concern with what you are observing, and if yo do have any stability issues with the bench in the future, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

    Please let us know if you have any additional questions or concerns."

    Not entirely happy with my $935 purchase...
    Translation: we haven't figured out how to make flat parts.
    Before everyone gets on their neg cannons, I've made that bench (once), and the selector plates were flat. So it's very possible.
    Last edited by Mech6; 12-22-2016 at 05:16 PM.
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    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    I basically said there were two solutions: a new (straight) plate selector thing or a longer pin (or both). I pasted their response above. Basically they said it's normal and I won't be getting either.
    Is the selector plate welded or bolted to the frame?
    Anyways, a cheap fix is this: the T knob on the end is threaded 3/8"-16. Meaning if you unscrew it one turn, the pin will advance 1/16", unless they have smaller hole in the frame to stop it, but I doubt it. The knpb might be loctited on. If you can unscrew it, back it off and use loctite to lock it in position. 1-2 turns should be enough to give you piece of mind. It's a long pop-pin (long barrel), so the actual shoulder is very long. If you take it apart (unscrew the big knurled ring just under the knob) you can see this clearly. So having it stick out another 1/8" isn't going to weaken anything.
    Last edited by Mech6; 12-22-2016 at 05:27 PM.
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    Originally Posted by fatal11 View Post
    My thinking for why it is not on purpose:

    1) the seat pin goes all the way through



    2) the back pin goes almost all the way through in the flat position



    3) the first thing the rep asked me is if the curved thing was bent and lo and behold (they should be right on top of each other). It doesn't look like that much of a difference but you can see if the pin is perfectly set to stop at the end of the curved thing, the amount that it is shifted means its barely hanging on. I'd say maybe 1/3 of the way through the hole at the most inclined setting and 1/2 way at a regular incline angle.



    It probably wouldn't worry me that much if just incline pressing because you don't move around that much and its just under heavy somewhat static load, but doing decline ab work was scary because you can hear the curved piece rattling around the pin.

    Definitely not keeping the 2.0 with the holes in the pad and the misaligned spine scraping the ladder



    Likely will just stick with the AB-3 at this point if they are able to fix the pin issue. I do like all the settings, maneuverability, pad width, smaller footprint and decline option. If they can't or won't fix it maybe I'll return both and get the Legend 3 way or Rae Crowther (is the pad gap as big on this??).
    Great review as for your question about the legend 3 way my pad gap is only 1.75" and the pop pin goes all the way through with some pin sticking out on all holes but the very last two holes for full incline where it looks to be flush with the edge of the holes.
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    Sorry, I'm calling BS on the "bent" support brace. I went back and looked for the bent picture..... and all I see is a comparison of the support braces looking offset between the back and the seat adjustments.

    Then I went to look at my ab2 and they are exactly the same.... individually they are dead on straight..... why you ask??? They are welded in slightly different places on the back & seat square tubes..... ever so slight but offset by design.... not crooked or bent.

    My pop pin slightly scratches the back brace.... so there is no room for improved "pin coverage".

    OP you seem a bit anal about details. Try using the bench for more than a day and give us a report after a few months. Mine has served me fine for a few years.
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    Originally Posted by rpark View Post
    Sorry, I'm calling BS on the "bent" support brace. I went back and looked for the bent picture..... and all I see is a comparison of the support braces looking offset between the back and the seat adjustments.

    Then I went to look at my ab2 and they are exactly the same.... individually they are dead on straight..... why you ask??? They are welded in slightly different places on the back & seat square tubes..... ever so slight but offset by design.... not crooked or bent.

    My pop pin slightly scratches the back brace.... so there is no room for improved "pin coverage".

    OP you seem a bit anal about details. Try using the bench for more than a day and give us a report after a few months. Mine has served me fine for a few years.
    Maybe this is a better photo. If it is not in fact bent or curved, it is not welded "flat" onto the frame. Either way, the pop pin is flush in the flat position and 20-25% of the way in at the most inclined position.



    I can't get calipers in there because of the frame and its hard to see in the photos, but I'd estimate the pin is about 20-25% through the slot.



    Do you mean your pop pin touches the other side of the frame? On mine there is a ton of space. You can't see the end in the pic, but imagine it is just going through around 25%. I took it from that angle so you can see the pop pin is fully inserted. I don't even know why they have that stopper thing on the right. Doesn't come close to touching it.



    Yes, I am anal but I'm not making stuff up. I have a ton of Rogue stuff and really want to love the bench. I am just a little surprised as the fix seems simple to me--a longer pop pin that touches the stopper (although maybe not so simple according to Mech). Would you accept craters in your bench padding and a misaligned spine like on the 2.0? At some point someone has to say something or else they won't change it.
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