24 months training on the Titan Fitness X-3 Rack, An Owner’s Review

In Equip Your Gym by Tim Steward

Few brands in the home gym industry are more polarizing than Titan Fitness. There are so many strongly held opinions about the company that most Titan equipment reviews spend more time talking about the company than the product being reviewed.

If you want to know whether or not Titan is a good brand as a whole, I wrote an entire article on the topic that you can see here. The short version is that, like most companies, they make some great gear as well as some not-so-great gear. They also make a lot of things that fall somewhere in the middle of those two extremes.

Of all of the products Titan makes (and they make a lot!), they are best known for their racks. They make some of the most affordable yet fully featured racks on the market. That’s why when it came time to buy a power rack for my home gym, I chose a rack made by Titan. That was over two years ago (I’m writing this in April of 2021). 

With more than 24 months of training on my Titan rack, I thought it was time to write an honest review based on actual long-term use. Over the time I’ve owned this rack, I’ve trained 5-6 days a week. At least 4 of those (and often all 6) involve the use of my Titan rack. 

While I pride myself on taking great care of my gear, I’ve not been easy on the rack. You’re not supposed to be! So… How did my Titan rack hold up? Would I buy it again? Let’s find out!

Why I bought the Titan X-3

I think it’s important to quickly outline why I chose the X-3 power rack from Titan in the first place. Specifically, I bought the tall, flat foot option.

My first consideration was the price. When shopping for power racks, you quickly realize that the price can get out of hand. Many times rack options from companies like Rogue, Elite FTS, and Sorinex easily break the $2,000 price point. This wasn’t going to work for me. I was on a budget, and I couldn’t spend that much on a rack.

When you are building out a home gym, there are two pieces of gear where it’s worth splurging: your bar and your bench. Those are the two things you’ll actually touch while training. If you’re gonna go over budget, that’s where to do it.

With a rack, you are after two basic functions. Does it securely hold weight and will it keep me safe? That’s it. As it turns out, you don’t need to spend $2k or more to get that function.

The Titan X-3 rack does as good a job or better at safely holding weight than racks by other companies that cost 2-4 times as much.

When I built my gym, I didn’t care if my rack was available in different colors. I didn’t care if I got to choose from various accent hardware. I didn’t care if it said a particular brand name on it. You pay extra for all those things! 

There’s a lot more to it, but price, by far, was the single biggest reason I chose to go with the Titan X-3 rack for my gym.

Product Overview of the Titan X-3 Flat Foot Power Rack

Let’s take a quick look at the technical specs as listed by Titan before I get to my rundown based on two years of training with this rack.

FEATURES:

– X-3 Series 3 x 3-inch 11-gauge Steel Uprights

– Included: 6-inch side hole spacing throughout entire upright

– Included: Westside hole spacing through the bench and clean pull zone

– Included: (4) heavy-duty steel uprights

– Included: (2) J-Hooks with UHMW plastic

– Included: 1.25-inch Single Pull-Up Bar

– Included: 2-inch Fat Pull-Up Bar

– Included: Assembly Hardware

– Optional: (4) Weight plate holders

SHORT SPECIFICATIONS:

– Overall Height: 82-in.

– Max Pull-Up Bar Height: 77-in.

– Product Weight: 280 lb.

TALL SPECIFICATIONS:

– Overall Height: 91-in.

– Max Pull Up Bar Height: 88-in.

– Product Weight: 296 lb.

GENERAL SPECIFICATIONS:

– Inside Width: 42-in.

– Inside Depth: 30-in.

– Overall Footprint: 50-in x 48-in.

– Hole Size: 11/16-in.

– Finish: Powder-Coated Black

– Material: 3-in x 3-in. 11-Gauge Steel

– Rackable Capacity: 1,650 lb.

– Whole Rack Capacity: 6,170 lb.

Things I Love About the Titan X-3 Flat Foot Rack

While there’s a lot that I like (and several things I wish were different) about this rack, there are a few things that I’ve fallen in love with over the time I’ve owned this rack. These are things that I would recommend everyone look for in their own rack regardless of whether or not you decide to buy the X-3.

Flat Foot Design

This is easily the thing I love most about this rack. Remembering that the primary function of your rack is to safely hold weight (on the j-hooks, safeties, etc.), it’s essential to realize that the rack needs to be stable and stationary to do that. It can’t move around.

Most racks made by other companies are “bolt down” models (Titan also offers the X-3 in a bolt down model). This means that they expect you to bolt the rack to the ground (you can see my full write-up on whether or not you should do this here). This is a ridiculous assumption by any company selling home and garage gym equipment.

90% or more of the home gym owners out there are NOT going to bolt their rack down. Period. They just won’t. Sure, some will build a lifting platform to go under their rack. And a portion of those people will bolt their rack to the platform.

But the rest of us are simply not going to go to the effort of bolting our racks to the floor. Commercial gym owners? Yes. Home gym owners? Not gonna happen.

And that’s where the flat foot design comes in. The combination of the weight (almost 300 lbs without add-ons, accessories, or stored weight plates) with the long, flat feet that make up the base of this rack keeps it firmly in place without the need to bolt it down.

This means that when you rerack a substantial amount of weight, the rack does not move or tip. This is a notable safety feature. If your rack moves or tips when you rerack your weights, that’s a recipe for a possible disaster. The whole point of a rack is to have a solid, stable, and stationary platform to lift from.

3″ x 3″ uprights and 11 gauge steel Construction

One way people try to save money on their rack is by going with a 2″ x 2″ post design. Some racks go even cheaper by using lower gauge (thinner, lighter, less strong) steel. These are NOT the best ways to save money on a rack. 

Just because a rack is rated to hold a certain amount of weight does not mean it will be stable or safe when lifting that weight!

The X-3’s 11 gauge construction and 3″ x 3″ post design means it’s rock solid. This type of build quality is exactly what you want in a power rack! Titan allowed me to spend less on a rack and still get the safety and stability that I wanted in my rack. I love that!!!

The Price

The 91″ tall version of the Titan X-3 runs $699 with no accessories (they make a short 82″ version that is $659 for those with low ceilings in your gyms). The X-3 also ships free in the US! The exact same spec rack from Rogue (the Monster light with dual pull-up bars) runs $820.00 plus $120 shipping (to my address in IL). That’s $240 (34%) more for the exact same thing.

Okay, okay, it’s not the exact same thing. The Monster lite rack says “Rogue” on it, has prettier welds and powder coat, and is made in the US (more on that later). But as far as function goes, it does the exact same thing in exactly the same way with the exact same level of functionality and safety. 

When it comes to using the racks and what they actually do, there is virtually no difference between the two!!!

Not to mention, everything you might buy for your rack is less expensive with Titan!!! For me, this made the X-3 a no-brainer decision. The money I saved, once I added accessories, paid for both my bench and my bar!

***I am NOT knocking the Rogue rack. They make great gear. I’m simply pointing out that for ME, the Titan presented a much better value.

Things I like about the Titan X-3 rack

A rack, at its heart, is a pretty basic piece of equipment. It holds your loaded bar and keeps you safe. That’s it. In other words, there ain’t a lot to them! That said, there are some things I do really like about my Titan rack.

  • Lots of accessories available
  • Rogue and other brand accessories DO fit the X-3 rack
  • Flat black color
  • Shipped fast and free
  • 1/2″ “Westside” hole spacing on the uprights
  • It’s held up really well over 24 months of heavy use

Things I wish were different about the Titan X-3 rack

As much as I enjoy my X-3, there are a few things I wish were different. Nothing is perfect, and this rack is no exception.

Shipping and Packing Quality

Titan is not known for its packaging or shipping, and this rack was no exception. While I was not missing any parts, some of the packaging was ripped. This exposed the rack itself and led to some shipping damage.

As you can see in the images, this damage was minor and in no way affects the functionality of the rack. I emailed Titan pictures, and they offered me a damage allowance that more than made up for the cosmetic issues on my rack. I cannot speak on their behalf, but every time I’ve experienced a similar issue with Titan, their customer service has been great.

I also wasn’t thrilled with the carrier that Titan used. They showed very little care for the delivery, dumped it halfway up my front walk, and were unwilling to make delivery to the garage door on the other side of my home.

That said, free shipping is just that. To offer “free” shipping, companies must try to find the least expensive carriers available, which was clearly the case here.

Stock status

Once I knew I wanted an X-3, I had to wait almost six weeks for them to be in stock. This was the pre-pandemic norm, and it’s worse now. If you decide on any piece of Titan gear that isn’t currently ready to ship, be prepared to wait.

I almost went with a Rep Fitness rack instead for this reason (one of the recommended racks on my recommended rack page here). But since Rep didn’t have a flat foot option, I decided to wait. I’m glad I did, as I really do love my Titan rack.

What other people say

I don’t typically include a section like this in my reviews, but I feel like I should with Titan gear. Especially with their racks. There are two regular complaints that you’ll hear about their racks, and I think it’s important to address them here.

Made in China

Yep, the rack is made in China. While I could give a long dissertation about why that doesn’t matter to me, I won’t. That’s because it may matter a lot to you.

If the country of origin is important to you and you want things made in the US (or maybe just not made in China), then Titan gear is not for you. It’s as simple as that. Just understand that you will pay a lot more for made in the US gear. Comparable racks by Rogue, Elite FTS, and Sorinex (all made in the US) will be considerably more expensive and will not do a better job of holding your barbell or safeties in place.

Weld Quality

A lot of noise has been made about Titan rack welds. They are NOT pretty. But that does not mean they aren’t secure or safe. They are strong welds that serve their purpose well.

Just because a weld is not pretty does not mean it’s not secure or safe. 

When people want you to spend a significant amount more on their product, they will draw conclusions that aren’t necessarily grounded in reality. They sound good but don’t hold water. I personally know of some very strong people who have lifted in Titan racks for years.

These folks train 6-7 days a week with weight that would crush most lifters. Their Titan racks have held up beautifully for many, many years.

If you are concerned about how the welds look, then Titan may not be for you. If you care about the stability and safety of the welds, rest assured that the Titan racks have you covered.

Powder Coat Quality

I’m going to lump this in with the welds. It’s not the prettiest, but it works. Honestly, I beat the snot out of my rack, and it’s held up really well. 

All powder coat, regardless of quality, will rub off and scratch over time. It doesn’t matter how pretty it was when it was new.

Look, the finish is critical on your barbell. You touch it to use it. The same is true for your bench. It makes sense to pay more for a nicer finish on those two things.

It does not make sense, functionally speaking, to pay for a better finish on your rack. You’re just gonna beat it up anyway. And you don’t touch it at all while training.

Again, if you are looking to buy the prettiest color-coordinated rack on the block, this is probably not the rack for you. But don’t mistake not being pretty for not being functional. And to be honest, the matte black powder coat on this rack looks fantastic in my opinion.

The Verdict

As you’ll see on my recommended racks page, I only recommend two racks. The Titan X-3 is one of them. I’m extremely happy with my purchase and enjoy training on the X-3.

Would I buy the X-3 again? If I was to go back in time, knowing what I know now, the answer is a resounding yes. It’s also the rack that I recommend to almost anyone who asks for my advice. That won’t change.

In the interest of honesty, and because this review will live on this site for quite some time, I plan to buy a Rep Fitness PR-4000 within the year. If you follow me on YouTube, you’ll know when I do, and I’ll spend a reasonable amount of time explaining why.

The short explanation is that I want to try it out. I want to be able to give you, my reader, an honest review based on using the PR-4000 for a year or more. I can’t do that if I don’t own it. My commitment to you is always to give you honest, real-world reviews based on actual use by a fellow home gym owner.

My honest, real-world opinion of the X-3? It’s awesome. If you need a rack, you should seriously consider it.

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