You know what's kind of annoying…
Having to use different collars on specialty bars and standard olympic bars.
With a standard olympic bar, you've got sleeves that are 1.96″ in diameter, whereas on almost all specialty bars you've got sleeves that are made out of 1.91″ OD pipe.
Since most collars are made to fit a 1.96″ sleeve, you normally need to buy a separate pair of specialty collars or some spring collars that fit the 1.91″ sleeves.
Thankfully, there's an awesome alternative that will solve this issue with ease.
It's made my Proloc, right here in the U.S.A., and in my state of North Carolina.
I've owned their collars for a long time now, and I've used them extensively on all my bars.
They are one of my favorite accessories in the gym without a doubt.
When you first look at these collars, you can immediately tell they're different than most. The traditional collar has a lever-type mechanism that actually locks the collar onto the sleeve. It's a fixed pressure application built for a specific sleeve diameter. It works great, but it's not universal.
The Proloc collars on the other hand, have a screw top that presses down onto the sleeve with a cylindrical bit. Because of this innovative design, you're able to adjust the pressure with a simple turn of the screw top. It works great AND it's universal.
It's actually brilliant!
The collar itself is made out of a very durable nylon plastic. It's really heavy duty and very well made. It's got some girth to it (hey now), which makes it feel very secure. They've actually been tested with four 45-lb plates stacked vertically on the bar – no slippage at all.
Although there are some descriptions out there that show the collars starting at 1.937″ diameters, the collars fit my 1.91″ sleeves with ease. In fact, as you can see in the picture, there is a gap between the top and the screw nob with the collars secure and in place. I can actually turn it another two full rotations.
As for the looks of the collars, I think they're pretty sweet. You can buy them in black or in any of their stock color options on Amazon. If you have a specific color you want, you can also reach out directly to Proloc and they will try to accommodate your color request.
There is an etched “Proloc 1” on the front of the collar. If you buy these through Proloc directly, you can pay an additional $5 to have them custom engraved with a personal message. Another $5 will allow you do it on both sides. It's a really cool feature that is really unique in the collar space.
As far as price is concerned, the Prolocs start at $42 before shipping ($6.99), but there are certain color options available on Amazon Prime with free shipping for a total cost of $48.49.
I personally think this is a very good price for what you're getting (a truly universal collar). Other collars like OSO, Lockjaw, Rogue HG 2.0, etc… start around $30 and extend beyond $50. Keep in mind though that these are only for olympic sleeves, so you would need to either buy another pair of axle collars, Proloc collars, or certain spring clips.
For the universality of the Prolocs at a similar price point, I think it's a no brainer to have these on the short list of awesome collar options.
Proloc Collars – Pros and Cons
- By far the biggest benefit of these collars is that you can use them on virtually any barbell sleeve.
- They're extremely well made, durable, and strong.
- They are available in multiple colors and they're also able to be customized.
- Proloc makes all of their gear right in the U.S.A.
- The price point is competitive with other barbell collars (that only fit olympic sleeves).
- They aren't quite as easy to put on as a lever-style collar. They're still painlessly simple, but it takes marginally more time and effort.
There really isn't much else to say. These collars are freakin' awesome. They work on every one of my bars, from Olympic to specialty, and they're extremely secure.
I can't imagine not having a pair in my gym.
Definitely check them out if you're in the market for a great pair of collars.
If you want to read more about powerlifting equipment in general, check out my ultimate guide to building a powerlifting home gym.
If you have any questions about these collars or collars in general, please leave a comment below. Likewise, if you own these collars and want to chime in with your own thoughts, please do so!
As always, I appreciate any feedback.
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The bar is loaded,