IronMaster Adjustable Dumbbells Review
When it comes to adjustable dumbbells, you have a plethora of different options on the market. Some of them are far better than others.
On this page, I am going to talk to you about a few options which have been produced by a fitness company that has been kicking around since the 1970s.
If a company has been around for this long, then you know that they are going to be doing a bang-up job at what they produce.
Value for Money
The Ironmaster dumbbells are in my top 3 recommended products if you’re looking for dumbbells to use at home. They are compact and durable. Due to their simple design and choice of materials, they will last a long time. I own a pair since 2014 and they still look great.
The only real drawback that I would say based on my own experience is that it takes longer to adjust weights compared to some other products on the market. However these other products cost more, so it’s up to you to decide.
What to Look for In An Adjustable Dumbbell?
Adjustable dumbbells are – as the name suggests – a pair of hand-held dumbbells that hold different weights by adding and removing plates.
When choosing an adjustable dumbbell, consider how you are going to develop your fitness practice. Make sure you have an adequate range of weights to add as your physical strength increases.
The handle provides the point where you interact with the dumbbell. The ideal handle depends on your hand size and shape, but generally, compact handles work best for all users.
A compact handle gives you the combination and natural feeling you get when handling a fixed dumbbell. That comfort lets you concentrate on achieving the form while you exercise rather than focusing on controlling the position of the dumbbells.
If you are investing in a set of adjustable dumbbells, you want to know they are going to last a lifetime. Dumbbells are a functional piece of kit, not a fashion accessory. Once you have purchased a set, you expect them to last.
Some adjustable dumbbells have plastic incorporated as part of the weight plate. Under certain conditions (prolonged exposure to sunlight, sharp impacts), plastic becomes brittle and breaks. A solid metal construction gives durability.
Adjustable dumbbells store easily in a cupboard or the corner of a room, but a dedicated stand is a worthwhile investment because:
- It gives a dedicated, accessible place for the dumbbells, and you don’t need to unpack a cupboard before beginning to exercise.
- It’s quicker and better for your back to be changing weights on a stand rather than stooping down to the floor – especially when the weights increase in mass.
Who Are Ironmaster?
Unlike some of the other companies that we have reviewed the products of, Ironmaster do not solely make adjustable dumbbells.
In fact, it is one of the newer parts of their business. They do focus on making gym equipment. So, they are pretty good at what they do.
Since the 1970s, this is a company which is well-known for making items which both look and feel great.
One of the major benefits of Ironmaster is that all of the products that they make are designed and manufactured in the United States.
This means that not only do you have some of the greatest talent in the world designing their products, but they are also built with some of the finest materials in the world too.
This is a company which takes every stage of the manufacturing process seriously. It should, therefore, come as no surprise that Ironmaster products dominate both home and commercial gyms around the world.
Introduction To The Adjustable Dumbbells Range
Since the adjustable dumbbell range is not the main focus for Ironmaster, they do have a smaller selection than some other companies out there.
In fact, they just do a single type (two, if you throw in kettle bells too).
However, the major benefit of just focusing on one range is the fact that they can benefit from economies of scale. Producing one type of product keeps the price down, as they will be manufacturing so many of them at once.
This means that Ironmaster produce some of the best quality adjustable dumbbells on the market, but they also come in at the lowest possible price.
The base adjustable dumbbell range from Ironmaster caps out at 75lbs.
Yes, I know that there are other companies out there producing heavier dumbbells, but I feel that 75lbs is a good ‘cap’ on the base product. It is enough weight that it can be enjoyed by both beginners and experienced lifters alike.
If you need something a little bit more, then you will be pleased to know that you can purchase an expansion kit which will take the adjustable dumbbells up to a whopping 165lbs.
Pros and Cons Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbells
- The square weights make working on the floor a safe exercise with no risks of rolling or instability.
- The weight increments are a useful 2.5lbs.
- Lifetime guarantee.
- Simple weight changes.
- Small footprint and simple to store.
- The threaded screw that holds the weights in place wears with time, but it is obtainable as a spare part.
- If working with different weights in a session, you have to spend time changing the plates.
In A Nutshell: What Are the Benefits?
The plates lock together and securely fix with a screw to the handle, so they don’t move or slip while you are using them.
The whole dumbbell is compact and straightforward to store and presents less of a trip hazard than having 20 different dumbbells in the corner of a room. The weight plates are square, which gives excellent stability for floor-based exercises.
A set of Ironmaster adjustable dumbbells used correctly gives you the full body work out that you would need four different exercise machines to achieve, for a modest cost.
Added in another $150 for the storage cabinet, and you have a compact home gym that can be stored in the corner of a room rather than needing a whole room or garage.
As a complete home exercise solution, adjustable dumbbells are cost effective and efficient.
More Range of Motion
You use the dumbbells to work your whole body by changing your body position. You gain maximum muscle development because free weights are less stable than machine weights, and you use muscles to compensate.
It’s the same principle as sitting on a gym ball instead of an office chair. The ball wobbles and your muscles automatically work to keep you upright making those muscles work harder.
As well as achieving the toning on the muscles, you are actively working, and you are getting the hidden benefit of all your stabilizing muscles getting stronger and improving your balance.
Where Can You Buy The Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbell?
You can buy the Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbell direct from the website (free shipping in the USA) or your favorite fitness store or online from the world’s biggest retailer.
You can buy a second-hand set – but then you don’t get the warrant. If you are buying second-hand, it’s sensible to replace the locking pins as that is the part that wears.
Features of the Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbells
One of the main reasons as to why people opt for adjustable dumbbells is because they want to change weights incredibly quickly.
According to Ironmaster, you are able to change the weight on the adjustable dumbbells within a couple of seconds.
However, while it is going to be fairly quick, I don’t think it is just going to take a couple of seconds. With these dumbbells, you need to physically remove the plates yourself which is a really convoluted process.
If you opt for other options on the market, many of them will have the dumbbells built into something akin to a case, and you just turn a dial and it either attaches weights or detaches them instantly.
Sure, they are going to cost a little bit more than the Ironmaster dumbbells are going to cost you, but if you are going to opt for something like this, you may as well go the whole hog and get something like that.
It is only going to be a hundred or so extra dollars, which is worth it.
The only problem is that I think that Ironmaster expects that their quick adjustment is not the best in the world.
Due to the tight locking at the start, it is inevitable that it is going to get looser and looser overtime.
Sure, the adjustable dumbbells are still going to be useable, but you are really going to feel the looseness in the dumbbell and this may cause issues.
Thankfully, Ironmaster do sell spare parts through their website, and they are going to be delivered to you quite quickly.
However, I really would have preferred if Ironmaster just designed a slightly better locking system.
There are other products on the market e.g. Bowflex, which do not need to ever have their parts replaced…and they are a lot quicker to use too!
As I mentioned previously; Ironmaster dumbbells are manufactured in the United States.
This means that the company has a wealth of quality materials at their disposal. In my experience, the quality metal that these dumbbells are made from is the most durable out there.
I bet that you could drop these babies from a huge height and they wouldn’t have a mark on them. This is why they are so loved in commercial gyms around the world.
The owners know that if they purchase one of these products, it is going to last them years and years. I doubt that it is ever going to be breaking if you are simply using these in a home gym.
If they do break (which they won’t!), you will have a lifetime warranty, and Ironmaster will instantly replace them for you (assuming that you are buying them for home use).
Do They Come with a Warranty?
The Ironmaster adjustable dumbbells come with a lifetime warranty. If you manage to break them (so far no one has), you will get a spot in the IronMaster hall of fame and a replacement.
The warranty applies to the weights and not to the locking pin, as that is a part that will require replacement after prolonged use.
These adjustable dumbbells are really small.
If you have a lack of space in your home gym, and many of us have a lack of space in our home gym, then you will be pleased to know that this set can be kept out of the way.
Remember; with adjustable dumbbells, you already have upwards of 20 different dumbbells in a single dumbbell (weight wise), which means that you are going to be saving a whole lot of space there.
You are going to be saving even more space with one of these. In fact, this is the exact type of thing that you can store in your cupboard until it is needed.
However, as I will say later on; I recommend that you do spend a little bit extra purchasing a stand if you can afford it now.
As I have said several times on this page (I really like to drum certain points home), the Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbells are incredibly affordable. This is all down to the company behind them.
However, they do get even more affordable than I have already said.
You see; if you are in the United States, you will be pleased to know that all of the adjustable dumbbells in their range will have free shipping included with it.
Now, obviously, the shipping has been built into the price. However, when you realize that the dumbbells, even with free shipping, are cheaper than many, many options on the market, you will be shocked.
I doubt there are more affordable adjustable dumbbells on the market at this price point!
How Much Does It Cost?
You can start with the Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbell system for around $400.
The 75lb system costs around $650 and that covers most needs. The stand will cost around $150.
In the USA, you get free shipping.
Compared with the price of most home gym equipment, the Ironmaster adjustable dumbbells are affordable and will last a lifetime.
Available With A Stand
It is worth noting that all of the Ironmaster dumbbells are also available with a stand.
Yes, this is going to add a little bit extra to the cost of the dumbbells, but it is going to be more than worth it. It makes storage a whole lot easier. It will also ensure that you can proudly display your quality dumbbells.
Not to mention the fact that you won’t be scuffing up your floor by leaving your adjustable dumbbells all over the place, which is never a good thing.
Obviously, the stand is also going to make it a little bit easier for you to lift the weights.
It may not matter too much right now about how easy it is to lift the weights, but once you start getting into the heavier stuff, you will be pleased that you do not need to bend down too much when you need to pick the weight back up.
Opting for the stand will also make it easier for you to change the weights on the adjustable dumbbells.
It always guarantees a flat surface, and it also means that you are not bending down changing the weight, which does get a little bit tiresome when you are doing it for the umpteenth time during your workout session.
You need to keep those muscles in perfect condition, right?
As I said; it is going to cost a little bit more to buy the stand with the dumbbells.
However, I know that you are going to want to pick up that stand eventually, so you may as well spend the extra cash now and save yourself money in the long run.
What Do People Say?
Reviews for the Ironmaster adjustable dumbbells are overwhelmingly positive. People like them because:
- They are affordable compared to both regular dumbbells and similar products.
- They store neatly away in custom storage and are compact.
- They feel like “real” dumbbells.
- The lock fitting is flat and lets you rest the dumbbells on your thighs.
- The square shape gives excellent stability.
- It is quick and easy to change the weight load.
- They are durable.
- You can build your collection a set at a time.
- IronMaster gives excellent customer service and a lifetime guarantee.
A few express some limited concerns over the potential fragility of the screw thread locking system leading to potential problems. These people also talk about how firmly the plates are locked in place and if there is a fault that IronMaster was excellent at resolving the issue with cheerful goodwill.
Some people find having to change the plates for a different weight frustrating as it interrupts the flow of the workout, but they feel that these dumbbells are the best solution in terms of price and storage.
Overall, people who invest in Ironmaster adjustable dumbbells value the product highly.
While the Ironmaster adjustable dumbbells do have their shortfalls, they are among some of the best dumbbells available on the market.
Generally speaking, I would try to go for the Bowflex options (see article here) if I had the money, but I see no reason why those on a smaller budget would not be happy with something from the Ironmaster range.
I’m a personal trainer based in Denver (Matrix Gym) and a true fitness nerd. If I’m not training clients or working out at my home gym, I’m probably skiing, cycling or hiking with my dog Rufus.