This is the much-anticipated review of the Rogue Euro Olympic Bar. First let me apologize to those of you who been patiently waiting to read this review. I feel pretty bad about having announced the Euro and XF review a couple months ago only to not get them completed in a timely manner. I won’t get too into it, but suffice it to say that I had an injury that prohibited me from thoroughly testing bars, and since I don’t write fiction there was simply nothing that I could do about it other than let things heal. Again, sorry for the delay, and thanks for your patience.
Last update: January 2018 – revisiting for accuracy.
Rogue Euro Olympic Bar Review: Intro
I’m going to summarize the review here in the beginning rather than at the end so that you can get an idea of what I have to say without having to read all 2000+ words if prefer not to. If you’re seriously considering this bar and you want more detailed info, then read on. Here we go.
- The Euro has just about the smoothest spin of any bearing bar on the market. You can spend more cash and probably still not get rotation like this.
- The Euro performs much like the NxGs, and it has many of the same attributes (high tensile strength, great whip and spin, and flawless finish), but the difference in knurling is night and day.
- This is Rogue’s best Oly bar to date, and it’s without a doubt an upgrade to the Rogue Olympic WL Bar; though I don’t know if it has anything to do with being “European.”
- While expensive, the Euro will make the ideal training bar for many lifters. There aren’t many bars that I’d consider shelling out more cash for unless I had to have an IWF bar, wanted a harsher knurl, or maybe preferred stainless steel.
- This bar meets all IWF-standards, and if Rogue is going to seek certification on any bar, it’ll be this one. If the Euro actually does get a sticker, expect the price to head north.
- For training, the Euro could conceivably replace the NxG Performance Trainer or any of the IWF training bars like the WerkSan, ZKC, etc, but the lack of aggressive knurling and sticker make it a weak replacement to the competition versions of these bars.
- The Euro is beautiful. The finish is flawless, the knurl is consistent, & even the end caps look flashy. It looks exactly like what a bar in this price range should look like.
Rogue Euro Specifications
These specifications are direct from the Euro’s product page. Rogue does not offer me any data beyond what they already publish online, so sadly I cannot offer you the yield strength or other bits and pieces that I can sometimes get from the other vendors/manufacturers.
- IWF-spec’d bar, 28 mm shaft, 20 kg men’s Olympic bar
- Needle bearings (5 per sleeve)
- Friction welded sleeves
- Polished chrome finish (both sleeves and shaft)
- Moderate knurl (Rogue’s standard knurl) with passive center
- Olympic hash marks
- EU steel shaft with min. tensile ttrength rating of 215,000
- Above average elasticity
- 16¼” loadable sleeve length (~413 mm)
- Made in Ohio, USA
- Lifetime warranty
- $695 including domestic shipping
Rogue Euro Review – European Steel
I’ve actually got very little to say on the subject of the “European steel.” Despite my efforts, I was unable to dig up anything factual regarding the superiority of EU steel over US steel for barbell manufacturing. Other than the anecdotal statement in the Euro product description regarding EU bars and whip, there was nothing explaining how or why EU steel is superior for this application. It may very well be the best steel in the history of everything, but I just don’t know, so I can’t really say anything else about it.
Having said that, the shaft is 215k PSI; exactly the same as NxG. It’s a massive upgrade to the 190,000 PSI shaft used for the Euro’s predecessor. No matter where the steel comes from or where it also could have come from, it’s a damn nice shaft, and that’s all that really matters.
Rogue Euro Review – Sleeve Rotation
The Euro has incredibly smooth spin; it’s both consistent and surprisingly quiet. In addition to paying close attention to turnover, I rack tested both the rotation of the sleeves around the shaft (loaded and unloaded) and the shafts ability to rotate freely within the sleeves. In all cases, rotation was nothing short of impressive.
Even though the Euro has a very free spin, it’s not erratic. It doesn’t over-spin, nor does it have the even more bothersome issue of briefly reversing direction after coming to a stop. Truthfully you should never experience that pendulum effect with a new bar. Sleeves should only want to settle or “correct” in this fashion if there is a bend in the shaft, a bar bearing, or perhaps a very imbalanced bumper loaded. Still, I check for that stuff since I’ll inevitably be asked about it.
You may be tempted to tell me that having a barbell set to spin while sitting in a rack says absolutely nothing about how a bar performs during a lift, and I’d be inclined to agree with you. However, spin tests can actually make spotting problems with a bar much easier.
In the case of the Euro video above, there were no problems to be found, and that makes the video rather boring. The bar goes from a full spin to a complete stop without any abrupt changes in speed, hanging, or catching. It spins well for not being loaded up, but it does not spin all afternoon. The shaft is dead straight and it’s obvious that the bearings are all seated correctly and working perfectly. Yeah, pretty boring. For $700 it better be boring.
The only real unknown in terms of the Euro’s rotation is how well the bearings will hold up over time. I don’t mean will it still spin a year from now, I mean will it still spin 10 or 20 years from now. Unfortunately I cannot test for that, I just have to put my faith in the R.
Rogue Euro – Knurl
While there are clearly many similarities between the Euro and the IWF training bars, I can safely say that knurling is not one of them. Rather than going with the usual semi- to super-aggressive knurl pattern typical of most elite training bars, Rogue opted to tone their knurl down a little and go with something a tad milder and more refined.
You can see that these two knurl patterns (above) are like night and day. Both offer secure grips, but they feel completely different in the hands. While technically the Euro is bit more comfortable to hold on to for longer, I wouldn’t suggest that this comfort alone makes the Euro superior to the NxGs. Then again, I’m also not going to tell you that the NxG knurl is better than the Euro’s. Arguments can be made for both of these knurling patterns, and you alone can decide which one would better suit you.
I look at it like this. The classic, aggressive knurl on training bars is not only very secure at high weights, but it has the added benefit of preparing you and your hands for the IWF bars (the Comp bars). Milder knurls like what’s on the Rogue Euro still offer a firm grip, but make for much more comfortable long training sessions – though it may require more chalk over the length of your session. If you don’t train for competitions, then there isn’t any reason to be uncomfortable during your workouts. Also, who doesn’t use chalk anyway?
If you’ve already adapted completely to aggressive bars, you might find bars like the Euro to feel insubstantial despite their adequate holding power. That is to say, it just won’t feel the same to you. If that’s the case, why change? Go with what you know.
And not that it matters, but if it were my decision to make I’d have slapped the same exact knurl that’s on the Chan Bar or SS Ohio onto the Rogue Euro. I think that would have been perfect for this bar; a nice compromise between the current ‘standard’ knurl and the typical uber-aggressive knurls. Not that anyone asked me (wah wah).
Rogue Euro – Whip
The Rogue Euro is a whippy bar; definitely above average in terms of elasticity. There is an obvious springiness to it that makes it feel exactly like the premium piece of equipment the price implies. Considering that we pay a premium price for it, this is good news. The Rogue Euro is whippier than any other Rogue bar, and this includes the original (190k) Rogue Olympic WL bar.
Rogue Euro – Finish
The Euro is completely finished in polished chrome, and in my opinion this bar is simply beautiful. It may even be more attractive than my previous favorite, the American Barbell Pro SS. Maybe; I don’t know – tough call.
There’s not much that I can say about the finish from a technical standpoint. It’s basically a flawless finish. I can find no imperfections on my personal Euro, and the few reviews that have been left all seem to indicate that the reviewer is more than impressed with the bar’s aesthetics.
Above I included one of Rogue’s pictures of the Euro rather than a picture of my own Euro simply because my camera doesn’t do this bar justice, and even though this Rogue picture is probably touched up to some degree, it still very accurately portrays how beautiful it is in person. Its practically art – functional art.
Rogue Euro – Pros, Cons, and Summary
I really have no problems with the Euro. Construction is extremely well done, and the Euro exhibits none of the symptoms that would generally hint at shotty manufacturing or weak tolerances. There is no excessive lateral play in the sleeves, no alarming noises when the bar is dropped, and no undesired friction (grinding or catching) in the sleeves. There are no red flags at all.
Matter of fact, the Euro has pretty much everything that I would expect from a nearly $700 premium Olympic barbell. The spin is flawless, the whip is great, the polished chrome finish is consistent and beautiful, and it’s warranted for life. Additionally, this bar has some of the less important but still nice-to-have features like micro-grooved sleeves for change/friction plates, knurl that extends to the collars, and even the presence of the passive center knurl. Oh, and shipping is free, so the price is the price.
The only thing that might bother some of you is the medium knurl. Again, I think the knurl on the Euro is adequate, but that doesn’t change the fact that this bar is still milder than the majority of the other Olympic training bearing bars. Those of you who have already adapted to and come to terms with cheese grater knurling may not even want anything softer. I still think that bars with moderate knurl like the Euro can make a great training bar for those long sessions, but I’m certainly not going to suggest that you go against your gut. $700 is an expensive experiment.
At the end of the day I think Rogue did an amazing job with this bar. As someone who has always thought of Rogue as the leading CrossFit equipment supplier and a mere dabbler in the actual sport of Olympic weightlifting, I am happy to see them make a bar that indicates that they can do way, way more than dabble. If your only exposure to Rogue is their basic bushing bars and some bumpers, then you’re in for quite the surprise with the Euro.
Rogue Euro 28mm Olympic Bar
As always, if you own the Rogue Euro and want to contribute some of your own feedback or thoughts, feel free to do so in the comments. Also, social shares are appreciated greatly.
Yes!!! The review is here :)
I could not agree more with your review. I am very happy with the bar and the knurl is the only thing I would change but I definitely don’t think its a show stopper.
I mentioned in another post that my bar developed a wobble in the spin. I am not sure how it happened but one day it was fine the next it wasn’t. Someone at my box could have dropped it (using it without my permission) or it could have just been a fluke issue. Of course, Rogue being Rogue, they took care of it right away and I had a replacement in 2 days. My new bar has held up and no issues to report.
One last note on the knurl… The center knurl is extremely soft almost to the point where it doesn’t add value. I am on the fence when it comes to center knurl anyway so it hasn’t bothered me but wanted to point it out.
lol yes finally.
Yeah that center knurl is pretty insignificant. It’s really only there I’m sure to adhere to IWF standards, as they still require it. Still, I’d rather have it than not either way.
Another great review. I have handled this bar in person, and it is a thing of beauty. Since Rogue pulled my econ option from the closeout page (all Games bars are being kept for future comps this year), I’m now forced to actually shell out a decent amount of cash if I want an Oly bar that will stand the test of time. I’ve narrowed it down to the Euro vs Eleiko Sport Trainer which can be had for a little less than the Euro from bumperplates.com. Sounds like you’re leaning towards the Euro despite the knurling.
On another note, has your AB SS WOD bar arrived yet?
lol no kidding? They pulled the Games bars eh? That sucks.
Yeah price between the Euro and Sport is negligible really. It shouldn’t be the determining factor for bars in this price range. I mean, Euro vs the standard Trainer is a price difference that’s hard to ignore, but even still probably shouldn’t be the only reason to pick one over the other. Also you have wonder if the Euro really will become a certified bar. I’m sure that’s not a quick process, and no one has actually confirmed the process is underway, but if it is this may be the cheapest the Euro will ever be.
I do like aggressive knurl over mild, but I’m not 100% sure that I have a preference between these two bars yet. Time will tell; I’m still doing a lot of comparing between the two since I have to write up that Eleiko review soon.
And yes, I have the SS WOD now. A fast-tracked review is already underway. Won’t be as thorough as reviews like this one, but it will let everyone know whether it’s worth considering or not. Since it’s a limited run bar, I want to get the info out there sooner rather than later so the bar doesn’t just go away while I’m writing it lol.
Yeah, that’s really what I meant. Just pointing out threat the Eleiko wasn’t more expensive and actually a little less so. I love Rogue (although their pre-sale customer service has been lacking in my opinion), and I like to support American made when I can. However, you know the Eleiko is going to last forever. I’m less concerned with the knurling since I think we have similar preferences, and you seem to indicate that the grip is secure. Probably better for my long Saturday Oly sessions. Maybe a blessing because this seems like a big upgrade to the WL bar. It’s not a matter of money really. Just philosophy. I’ve buikt my entire garage gym off finding deals and like new used equipment. Hurts me to pay full price for anything, haha.
Understood and appreciated regarding the AB bar.
What do you mean by Rogue pre-sale? They not answering e-mails anymore?
I asked them for some specifics about the Euro here, and I never even got a response, so it’s curious that you say that. With me, I tend to ask things they don’t want to answer, so I’m not horribly surprised the rep just junked the mail, but I’d hate to hear they do that on a regular basis.
I have the same experience. basically when I ask question about product purchasing or already purchased, they will response. any other question even like improvement suggestions, they just ignore it without any response. The worse thing is that they even replied with wrong product information, which happend twice! I think the company become bigger and hired more peoples without enough professional attitude and passions.
And that really give me a mixed feeling about this company, which make me tend to find some other company with similar price for future purcharsing. so your reviews about other company like fringesport and vulcan are really helpful. thanks for your works!
Used to be the same couple of guys who answered the emails and phone calls; you would recognize them easily after a while. Now like you said there are more reps. I’m hoping this is just a case of a bad hire or something, and temporary. It has to be, right? Bill will respond to issues himself on the various community forums because he’s so passionate. No way would he knowingly allow his reps to ignore emails. No way.
Mix of both. I’m very detail oriented, and I think a ton about my gear before I ever make a purchase, new or used. I tend to ask questions that they don’t seem to want to answer for whatever reason. I usually get replies that avoid some or all of my question. Very rare that I don’t hear back at all, but it has happened once or twice. I just chalk that up to volume, but I do get frustrated when companies aren’t willing to openly discuss all aspects of what they do. This is high end stuff, and it should come with that kind of service. For instance, you can call Concept 2 any day of the week and a rep will answer directly and discuss ANY question you have openly. It’s awesome and makes you feel more comfortable with the product. Fringesport is another company that I’ve found to be very responsive and engaging. You know they want your business.
I love Rogue. Most of my equipment is Rogue. However, they just don’t seem to be a very transparent company and they definitely don’t want to spend a bunch of time convincing you to buy their product. On the other hand, I’ve had great dealings with them post-purchase and they are well known for their customer service on that end. Would like to see more of that pre-sale.
I also think advertising bars as “coming soon” for 3 weeks before pulling them, charging more for Games used comp plates than new ones but still listing them on a closeout/deals page as opposed to creating a Games memorabilia section, not describing the condition of individual closeout bars, etc. are all strange business practices. Feels like Rogue should stick to selling off used gear locally or use their considerable resources to provide online consumers a little more information. Creates mistrust that’s not good for a brand even if it hasn’t begun to hurt the bottom line. If they get wind of this post, I’ll probably never get my questions answered, haha. I agree with your comment about Bill. He has an active presence on several message boards and seems like a helpful guy to his credit.
Eleiko has five bearings per sleeve; 10 total. Well, the Comp line does. The Eleiko Sport has the same four-per as the Euro, and the XF has only one per sleeve. Four of five per sleeve is kind of a wash. Sure five is better technically, but it’ll probably never matter in the end. 99.999% of the time, only negligence or mis-use will destroy a bearing, so it’s doubtful that any damage would be avoided in a negligence situation just because there was another bearing per sleeve. Also the way bearings are positioned in the sleeve isn’t how you might think. They are paired up on either ends of the sleeve, not evenly distributed. If there are five, generally the pair under the collar become a clump of three rather than two.
The bearings used have such massive load ratings that you could probably get away with having only two, but since it would increase the likelihood of an issue and bearings aren’t as expensive really, everyone goes with four per. Five per is pretty rare btw.
Not a big deal as the review is correct, but in your reply above you state that the Euro only has 4 bearings per side instead of 5.
oops. Ya it all blends after a while. My bad.
No problem. Great review by the way. At the end of the day, when you price a bar at $700 with the Eleiko Sport being available for cheaper it’s a tough sell, for me at least. That said, I certainly wouldn’t mind trying one out.
I gave in and bought a Euro.
haha nice. Do you have it yet?
not yet, should be here Friday in time for a max out Saturday.
Of course 4 days after I buy a rogue Euro, they put a Chrome center knurling standard WL bar on sale for $350!!! I bought my wife a chrome WL bar though….
I’m tempted to try the closeout bar you’re talking about now that they reduced the price. $371 isn’t bad if you get lucky and the cosmetic defects are minor. I still hate the idea of the blank end caps, but I recently invested in a set of comp plates and the AB SS WOD bar so funds are stretched a little thin for new equipment. A Rogue customer service rep once referred to the blank end caps as having them flipped around, so it made me wonder if you could take them off to find the logo on the inside of the collar as opposed to a truly blank cap. Haven’t tested that theory yet though. Having said that I’ve used the Euro a lot in a friend of mine’s garage gym, and I absolutely love it. You’ll be happier with it in the long run.
I’m debating this bar and the American Barbell SS Bearing bar for my Xmas present.
I currently own a Pemdlay Bushing bar and the Vulcan 3.0 Love the Vulcan much more. I do like knurling a bit more on the Pendlay. It’s bare steel.
Of the 2 which would you recommend?
Since you’re in Europe (I think), why wouldn’t you buy an Eleiko if you’re at that price point?
It’s not the same Mike
My bad… My question still stands though. At that price point it would be hard not to consider an Eleiko for less money.
To each his own, but I’d take the SS over a Sport too.
Fair enough, however at the price-point of the Euro you could have an Eleiko trainer, not Sport. FWIW, I just looked and Eleikosport has the Sport Trainers in pounds on sale for $600.
Well yeah, I’d buy the Sport over the Euro at a $600 sale price especially if budget was an issue, but I’d still buy the SS Pro over the Euro or Eleikos if budget was not an issue. Without splitting hairs, the Eleiko/Euro are essentially the same bar. The SS Pro is the only one that offers something unique while offering the same level of performance, and that uniqueness is functional, not just “neat”… though it is also neat lol. Again, it’s just preference at this price point; none of them are bad buys.
I guess the knurl/feel of the bar is going to be the same as the SS WOD bar and the whip/spin should be on par with the Euro/Eleiko?
Yeah pretty much. I also like the thicker hard chrome coating on the sleeves. I wouldn’t choose a bar just for that, but it’s a nice plus.
I prefer the stainless AB over the Euro just because of the feel, but I don’t think one is necessarily better than the other. Both will blow the Bendlay/Elite away, but the Euro is chrome so if you’ll spoiled by bare steel, the AB should feel better to you.
Hello to everyone!
I was recently pointed out to this site and I’ve had had a great time reading it for the past week. I really enjoy JBurgeson’s reviews and I’m looking forward to more of them.
After reading this review on the Rogue Euro, I’ve narrowed it down to buying the Rogue 28 mm Training or the Rogue Oly WL barbell. My questions are; is the WL that much better than the Training? Is the extra $200 worth it? Is the whip the same on both?
Between the choices for the Oly WL; is the polished chrome much better than the bright zinc when it comes to durability? I live in Miami and humidity is high most of the year. I don’t plan to leave the bar in the garage but humidity could still be a concern.
The bar will be used mostly in my garage at weights of around 85 to 100 kilos.
Thanks in advance,
Pantxo in Miami
Whip will be the same, as the Trainer and Oly use the same shaft. At 85-100 kg, you would probably be fine with the Trainer, but a 225-lb/100kg clean and jerk implies some experience, and I could also make an argument for going with the more expensive bearing-based Oly bar.
Regarding the finishes, chrome will ultimately be better for an environment known to be very humid; like Florida. Both zinc and chrome will protect the bar from oxidation for years, but the chrome will definitely outlast the zinc, and look better in the long run as well.
Do you have much experience with DHS bars? I am trying to decide between the Rogue Euro and the DHS competition bar. I am looking to get back into competition so I am hoping the DHS competition bar would have a more aggressive knurling but I don’t want to overpay if the Euro is close to the same quality, though money is not that big an issue.
Not too much, but a little. Both of the DHS bars will be more aggressive than the Euro, but the Euro is probably a higher quality bar overall. DHS has poor quality control from what I hear. DHS is the only IWF bar manufacturer that I’ve heard multiple complaints about QC, and on top of that getting those issues resolved is supposed to be a nightmare (with the USA dealer, that is.) There’s been a couple fellas who have posted their experiences with them in the comments, though I don’t remember what articles those ended up on (Klokov review maybe?) You know the Eleiko Sport Trainer is a much better buy than the DHS bars, and the knurl will be more substantial than the Euro on any of the Eleikos. About the same money as well. Just a thought
I bought the Euro bar for training at home about 6 months ago. My thoughts:
* Great spin
* Love the knurling, finish, and how it feels in my hands
* It has whip, but it’s not as whippy as I would like or was led to believe. I have to put at least 125kg on the bar to see any significant whip.
* I hate, hate, hate the stupid grooves on the sleeves. They make adding/removing plates a huge pain (especially when trying to maneuver in my cramped garage gym) and don’t seem to do much in the way of keeping the plates in place. The sliding of the plates on the grooves just creates little metal shavings that I have to sweep up every so often. Definitely my least favorite feature of the bar.
Those grooves are getting pretty common. They work much better with friction plates though, but who can afford them!
How has this bar held up over the ~1.5 years you’ve had it? How frequently do you train with it and how much are you loading on it? I love your website. Thank you for sharing so much valuable information.
Sorry John, been MIA last couple days.
I don’t use the Euro often. I personally prefer the AB SS. It does get used, and it’s aged well… or I should say it hasn’t aged, but I’m not exactly putting it through the ringer anymore. It’s a great bar, but I don’t think it’s Rogue’s best seller because of the price and the fact that stainless bars have become more competitive.
Hello guys, I am talking from Brazil South America. Right now I want to buy the right barbell for my Weightlifting traning, and I can’t make mistake, since I will pay huuuuuuge taxes buying any Barbell. Well, after reading tons of reviews, I put three choices; the Rogue Euro, the Eleiko training and American barbell SS. In my opinion the whip is the single most important aspect for the quality of a bar, and even though I am weak (Snatch 115kg, C&J 140kg) the whip can make a big difference even with my numbers. So I would like to know if there is any significant difference of whip above these three bars, and what could be my better option. thanks a lot
All solid choices. Eleiko if you just want to be the most confident about your choice. American Barbell if you want stainless steel. Eleiko has the most aggressive knurl while the Euro and American Barbell is both quite moderate in my opinion.
Does the rogue euro barbell have a dust proof seal?
Don’t think so. American Barbell and Eleiko both use a seal but I can’t think of any Rogue bars that do. That doesn’t mean there aren’t any, I just don’t know of any.