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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on February 14, 2007
Bought this from a local supplier after talking to several salesmen and doing some test drives.

This machine is not the typical, flimsy, entry-level crap you see at chain stores - it is built more like commercial gym equipment (not surprising, as Body Solid is a major commercial gym supplier) Lots of steel square tubing and 1/2" bolts here.

All exercises are connected to a single weight stack with the usual weight pin via a clever system of interconnected pulleys and cables. The mechanical advantage provided varies by station, meaning that the weight felt at a given station can be higher or lower than the actual weight stack - meaning that many exercises can offer different weights to different muscle groups without having to change the weight pin.

All settings on the machine (seat height, etc) are adjusted via spring-loaded, captured pop-pins, just like commercial equipment. As a nice touch, the seat has an integral gas cylinder that makes height adjustment easy with no wrestling with the machine. Re-configuration between exercises is kept to a minimum, and what little is required can be done in a matter of seconds. This isn't a machine that requires major setup changes between exercises, meaning more time exercising and less time futzing with the machine.

As far as exercises go, you get a solid set of basic stations (where, like a dedicated single-use machine) the intended exercise is immediately obvious: chest press, leg extensions/lifts, pectoral flies, pulldowns, forward row, weighted crunches, and a bar that can be used for lifts/bicep curls. There are also a series of secondary uses for each station where the use isn't immediately obvious (and in some cases, a little awkward) but where, admittedly, other muscle groups can be worked.

For those looking to establish a good basic weight training regimen, and where you don't have easy access to a full gym, this is a great machine that gets the job done with little to no tradeoffs involved with this being a "home" gym; it really is a very impressive bit of engineering.

The one fly in the ointment is the assembly instructions. The instructions as given are clear and comprehensive, and the hardware for assembling the machine is bagged individually per step. But the design of the machine has materially changed several times without the instructions being updated. In some cases, whole parts have been deleted (with the hardware being changed to reflect the change) in others, subassemblies (the main seat) now come pre-assembled but still have the old hardware bags, leaving surplus hardware.

I was able to suss it all out - but I also have a mechanical background. I can see how anyone hoping to just follow instructions could wind up hopelessly lost and frustrated in very short order. If you are not particularly mechanically adept, find a friend who is.

Overall, I'm very impressed with this product.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
If you want a great home gym, BUY THIS ONE - YOU WILL BE VERY PLEASED!! I bought this gym about 4 months ago and it was the best purchase I've made in years. My son and I use it on a regular basis, and it is changing the shape of our bodies. The quality of this gym is second to none, it is built to last. I am 100% satisfied!! :)
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on July 12, 2011
The unit is certainly a great solid piece of equipment...but if you're interested on buying it, this is what you should know:

The Aluminum Pulley kit that is displayed on these pictures are not included on none of those price tags...according to Body Solid and other resellers that aluminum kit is an upgrade that you have to buy if you want a much smoother workout, which I found incredibly disappointing to find out right after I bought it.

This is not Amazon's fault, and it's certainly false advertisement, I spoke with both the reseller and Body Solid, and as of now Im still waiting on a resolution from both of them.

I will update this post as soon as I get a resolution on this matter through Body Solid.

For those thinking of buying it, I wouldn't recommend using this product with the pulley kit that come from stock, they're not that great, and according to other reviews online they say the aluminum kit is the way to go.

UPDATE: They did resolve my case, but it wasn't easy at all. Contact the seller before you buy!
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on May 9, 2011
The Body Solid G5S is a nice gym but I think Body Solid has some quality check issues. I think I need to blame Body Solid and not the seller, Serious Steel, because I believe that the gym was drop shipped from Body Solid. It took 12 days to receive the gym after I ordered it. It then took 24 hours to assemble the gym. I spent three days, 8 hours apiece putting it together. But then I still couldn't use the gym properly after it was assembled until about another 15 days later. Let me explain why.

1. It took 3 days (24 hours) to assemble the gym because since the instruction manual was written Body Solid has changed the gym at least a dozen times. Instead of printing a new manual they enclose about 4 addendums to the manual. So you have to go back and forth and it is very confusing. But there are some changes that they decided not to tell the owner about, so you are looking for parts that are stated in the manual but the parts are different or are already attached. It would have been much quicker if they had told you that they had attached some parts already, instead of causing me to search for 30 minutes among hundreds of parts. (On a side note: It probably would have been about 5 hours quicker to assemble the gym if I had more help assembling it. But I was doing it by myself except for I hasd someone help me balance the very first two parts: The main base frame and the rear base frame)

2. After you assemble the whole gym THEN the manual instructs you to attach certain pulleys. Well, the main pulley attachment that is welded on to the main base frame was welded on crooked so the holes for the bolt were crooked. It was very difficult to get the pulley bolted in and it sat crooked so that the pulley rubbed against the metal. I contacted Body Solid but they took so long to get back to me that I went ahead and installed the cable. Eventually they sent me a new main base frame, but since it is the first part of the gym I would have to disassemble the entire gym and reassemble it to install it. Instead the pulley is rubbing and the cable is slightly crooked so that the resistance is more than it should be.

3. Next, the very last cable needs to be installed and the very last pulley needs to be installed for the cable. Well, the pulley attachment on the leg extension did not have a bolt hole or a bolt to hold the last cable in place. I figured that it was another one of those parts that Body Solid changed without stating it in the manual. So I routed the cable above the pulley because it held in place there. But this caused the cable to rub against the leg extension and caused it to start shredding. So Body Solid eventually sent me a leg extension with the proper holes and bolts and a new cable. I had to take off the old parts and install the new.

Now the gym works pretty well except for the resistance is more than it should be because of a crooked pulley. I fear that eventually I'll have to reassemble the entire gym. I would have rated the Body Solid G5S gym about 4 stars if Body Solid's quality assurance was better.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on December 31, 2011
This machine is amazing! I did buy the upgraded pulley kit and everything is so smooth. This machine has commercial durability similar to a fitness center. It's actually better quality than what my high school had in their gym, which was a pretty decent setup. Money well spent, I would suggest this to anyone.
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