You may have seen a smith machine at your local gym, but have you ever tried working out with one?
Smith machines have stirred up a bit of controversy in the fitness world and have been the source of many debates by the weight rack.
However, this once considered ‘obsolete’ piece of gym equipment might surprise you with its often overlooked abilities and incredible benefits.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about smith machines and for a thorough Ironmaster IM2000 review, one of the most popular smith machines on the market.
What's a Smith Machine?
A Smith machine is a self-spotting weight machine capable of aiding you in performing a wide variety of weight training exercises.
The Smith machine consists of a fixed lifting bar within steel rails that allows for only near-vertical or vertical movement. (1)
Regular barbells have to be re-racked after repetitions, whereas Smith machines use a series of slots that the barbell hooks onto to ensure secure stacking.
Many Smith machines also come with additional safety features like pegs, blocks, and other devices that help to prevent the barbell from falling past a predetermined height.
You can more accurately predict your movements and better target specific stabilizing muscles for more significant muscle gains using Smith machines because of the barbell’s fixed position and stable track.
Smith machines are ideal for advanced and intermediate level lifters who are already well versed in proper form and techniques for various weight training exercises. (2)
Exercises to do with a Smith Machine
You can use the Smith machine at your home or local gym, to perform various weight training exercises for a full-body workout that will have you sweating in no time.
Here are just a few of the many workouts you can try using a Smith machine:
- Back squats for your core, glutes, and quads
- Close grip bench presses for your triceps and pecs
- Romanian deadlifts for your core, glutes, and hamstrings
- Barbell rows for your traps, biceps, and lats
- Upright rows for your traps and deltoids
In-Depth Ironmaster IM2000 Review
Now that you’re familiar with Smith machines, in general, let’s go over an expansive Ironmaster IM2000 review, one of the leading self-spotting machines in public and in-home gyms.
The basic package for the Ironmaster IM2000 is available on Ironmaster’s official US website.
The IM2000 Self Spotting System from Ironmaster comes standard with:
- Main Smith machine frame
- Standard plate holders
- Lat pull bar
- Upper and lower pulley cable system
- lifting bar with Olympic adapters
The Ironmaster IM2000 base model is 48″ wide x 48″ deep, x 84.5″ high, and Ironmaster recommends a space of 7 feet wide x 5-6 feet deep in a room with a minimum ceiling height of 87″ for the machine.
Keep in mind that additional attachments, such as a bench and weights, may require extra space in your home gym.
Quality and Durability
The IM2000 is made from 11 gauge structural steel and uses Ironmaster’s signature slide bushing and slide rail system for maximum durability.
The cable system on the IM2000 is rated for users weighing up to 350lbs, allowing you to work out safely and securely for years to come.
Ironmaster’s IM2000 self-spotting system also uses lockout points that are spaced 1.7″ apart in conjunction with secondary safety stops, and springs, to keep you protected during your workout.
The press bar system on the IM2000 stands out among its competitors.
Where most Smith machines use linear ball bearings that have to be replaced and consistently maintained, the IM2000 from Ironmaster uses a slide bushing and slide rail system.
This unique, innovative system features a polymer material bushing explicitly designed to allow you the smoothest movements possible.
Unlike linear bearings, there is no need for messy applications of greasy lubricants with Ironmaster’s rail system.
Their special polymer material bushing allows the press bar and slide rails to transition without the friction or wear and tear on the machine that many users report experiencing with classic Smith machines.
The IM2000’s lifting bar weighs 36lbs with the Olympic sleeve adapters (34lbs without them) and is 73″ wide. The lifting bar has a grip width area of 42″ and has a weight capacity of 1000lbs.
As previously mentioned, Ironmaster’s IM2000 is available with an array of attachments and add-ons to help you perform as many different workouts as possible.
The IM2000 is super customizable and, as such, can accommodate multiple workout stations.
This tool also allows you to purchase Ironmaster’s specially made extra Olympic weights and dumbbells to work with your IM2000.
Stacks of Plates?
The basic IM2000 Smith machine does not come standard with weight plates.
However, they can be purchased in addition to the IM2000 or as part of your custom IM2000 package from Ironmaster.
Ironmaster offers multiple Olympic plate sets as well as individual barbells, dumbbells, and kettlebells that you can use in tandem with your IM2000.
The Ironmaster IM2000 comes standard with the Ironmaster Guarantee that promises your satisfaction within 30 days, or your money back.
All they require is that you return your purchase in its original condition and packaging within the 30 day trial period, and they’ll cover the shipping cost too.
Ironmaster’s product warranty covers all factory defects, and defective parts, for up to 10 years for frame and structural, functional components.
They also include one year for normal wear and tear items like rubber and upholstered parts and two years for cables.
Their dumbbells and kettlebells, however, come with a lifetime warranty for structural and functional components.
Unlike many other Smith machines, the Ironmaster IM2000 requires minimal maintenance between uses.
The company recommends applying pure silicone spray once every few months and that you check the frame bolts and nuts for their tightness once a year, or more often, depending on how regularly you use the machine.
Other Special Features
Here are a few more unique features that you can take advantage of with your Ironmaster IM2000:
- Sleek, modern design matches any decor and is compact enough to fit in any home gym
- Tough, top-quality building materials and polymer finish you can trust to last
- Easy to reposition for quick transport and mobility, yet secure when in position
- Free-flowing action from rail system makes workouts more comfortable and cuts down on rolling friction resistance
Ironmaster IM2000 Review - What Do People Say?
The Ironmaster IM2000 has received rave reviews on Amazon, and on the Ironmaster official website since it first hit the market for public sale.
One customer on Ironmaster’s Amazon store, Dr. M. Lawicki, proclaims,
and rated the IM2000 with an excellent rating.
Another consumer, using the username Review Guy, states,
Users on YouTube have taken to the online video forum in masses, sharing information and their thoughts on Ironmaster’s IM2000 self-spotting system with multiple 5 out of 5 stars reviews, and Ironmaster has responded.
Drew Bishop says in his “IRONMASTER SMITH MACHINE FULL REVIEW AND DEMONSTRATION” video,
“I did a lot of heavy research on good home gyms for people that are serious about gaining muscle…And for the money, I found that this was one of the better pieces.”
He also discusses his experience shopping with Ironmaster, stating,
“They were super friendly- customer service. Definitely worth it, for sure. And I recommend it if anyone’s wanting a good home gym, but they don’t want a piece of junk. That’s the last thing I wanted to do.”
Another YouTube user by the name of Joe Gray offered his thoughts and experiences with the Ironmaster IM2000 in a 15-minute video. In it, Joe says,
“This was a big, big upgrade for me. I didn’t have any machine-type stuff for a long time, and adding this to my repertoire was a huge deal.”
Joe also goes on to say,
“If you don’t have room for a dedicated space for a leg-curl machine, or something bigger. If you don’t have a dedicated space for a lat tower, if you don’t have dedicated space for dips, maybe you don’t have an attachment for your rack… this is an absolutely [sic] incredible system.”
Smith machines may have a bad reputation for years of misguided disapproval and misuse.
But with the knowledge and experience that can only be gained from years of research and trials, Ironmaster’s IM2000 has quickly become one of the best workout machines available for purchase in the fitness equipment market.
The IM2000 from Ironmaster is a top of the line Smith machine that is well worth the price for any athlete with experience in weight training and a goal of building serious bulk through targeted exercises.
If you like this article, then check out our other reviews like this review on Total Gym Alternatives – The 5 Best Options.
For more on Ironmaster, check out this review on Powerblock Vs Ironmaster Adjustable Dumbbells and find out which set of adjustable dumbbells comes out on tops.
For more of our intensive, in-depth product reviews, visit dumbbellsreview.com.
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.
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