My next purchase will be a high-quality competitive standard olympic bar. The majority of 'olympic' bars sold in stores are pieces of junk! They wouldn't last a day in a real powerlift meet. I have been annoyed with my junk bar for awhile now, although I am not strong enough to bend it yet. Quote from "starting strength" by Rippetoe and Kilgore: <div></div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE"> Bars are the place to spend money, if you have it. If you don't, raise it somehow, because cheap bars are dangerous, unpleasant to use, and a bad investment. Cheap bars will bend, even under normal use....Expect to pay $250 or more for a good bar. There are lots of cheap imported bars available for under $100. They are junk. Do not buy them. </div> Update: just ordered a "texas power bar". IPF approved, 1500 lb.s static test. Designed for all around powerlifting. Around $250 with shipping. I found out that Eleiko are considered the elite but it will cost you over $700 american! My old bar cost about $20 used and the hex-bolts on the end are constantly loosening. I can't wait to chuck it.