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Friday, April 01, 2011

Trouble Bending the Grade 8 Bolt (Grade 5's are No Problem)

I hope you have been seriously destroying some crazy steel lately in your training.

I got my hands on the new nail from IronMind, called the Gold Nail the other day.

This thing is 8.375 inches long and 3/8 inches thick, so this thing is a monster.

I wanted to share an email I got this week from a subscriber named Erik, in regards to bending:

    "I do have a question. I already bought your e-book, and the progression chart helps a lot. But I'm stuck hard on grade-8 and have been for a few months. Is it better to have one or two big, heavy bending sessions a week, or grease the groove from day to day? I know gtg helps with a lot of big lifts, sometimes more so than exclusive workouts."

So, as it turns out, Erik can bend a Grade 5 bolt over and over. In fact, he has bent tons of them, but he's having trouble with the Grade 8.

If you are not familiar with the Graded bolts, we are talking about 6-inch long and 1/4-inch thick bolts that are made under strict manufacturing conditions to resist bending.

In fact, when you attempt to bend a Grade 8 bolt, it will actually flex back on you if you do not do enough damage to it.

Being stuck at a certain nail, bolt or steel bar generally is caused by one of two things.

Either you are not strong enough, or there is a problem with your technique, or BOTH.

As far as greasing the groove, I don't really buy into that for bending, personally

Volume bending can be awesome for getting you used to bending, but I'm not sold on generating a pile of bent steel in order to move up the ladder. Besides, Erik is already slaughtering Grade 5's and it hasn't seemed to pay any dividends.

However, that does not mean that using Grade 5's won't help the situation. If you wrap electric tape or duct tape around the center of the Grade 5, you will reinforce it and make it tougher to bend. This would be my first suggestion, to see how far you can put a kink into it with your current technique.

The next suggestion I have is to run down through this post: How to Improve Strength for Bending.

Grade 8 Bolt - Kinked

That post is all about improving the kink, and was written especially for someone else who was having trouble finishing off Grade 8 Bolts, so run down that post and see if any of the suggestions will help you out.

If you feel that strength is not the issue, then it is probably technique.
  • Are you not loading tension into the bar?

  • Are you standing too straight up?

  • Are your hands too close together?

There are lots of variables here, depending on which bending style you use, what kind of wraps you use, your body type, the positions your body likes to operate in, etc. These techniques are all covered in extreme detail in my Nail Bending eBook.

So, in review, here are the steps I'd like to see Erik, the Future Red Nail Bender, try out.

    1. Load up tape on the center of a Grade 5 Bolt and give it a try to see if you can get it (test your strength).

    2. Review the "Improving the Kink" post, here: Force Production for Bending. (force production and technique)

    3. Review the various technique run-downs in the Nail Bending eBook. See if there is something that might be off, and try changing things up (technique)

If it is not one of these two things (or a combination of both) then the only possible thing I can think of is that you are not attacking that thing like a savage beast.

Remember, you are doing something that you're not supposed to do. That Grade 8 bolt was not made to be bent with human hands. If it were, it would be easy to do, and what's awesome about that?

Attack it with a savage beast mentality like you are going to tear down an entire town with all of your rage.

Keep your technique dialed in and commence with the hostile takeover of the Grade 8 Bolt.

Hopefully this helps you out Erik - thanks for sending in the question.

If anyone else has a question, please feel free to do the same.

Be a Savage Beast!


P.S. If you are struggling with a bend and need help, don't forget about the two best Bending resources on the planet: the Nail Bending eBook and the Nail Bending DVD.

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