After recently cleaning the All Day Ruckoff gym we stumbled upon a large number of ruck plates… which include one of each size that GORUCK produces. Ruck Plates are one of my favorite inventions and I think it’s mentioned in the “Securing GORUCK Ruck Plates” post that I exclusively use Ruck Plates now due to their size to weight ratio. Gone are the days that 80% of your pack is filled with six bricks! They are very compact and fit perfectly in the GORUCK Rucker (our review).
In this post we’ll be comparing ruck plate sizes so you can judge how they look next to each other as well as how they fit in a GORUCK Rucker.
Ruck Plate Comparison
Here’s the big comparison… hopefully you find at least one part of it useful. For those curious here’s the time frame that the GORUCK Ruck Plates were released in as they were not all released at the same time. Originally the 10 lb, 20 lb Expert, and 30 lb Expert were released… although they did not have the name Expert tied to them at the time. Then, the 45 lb ruck plate was released and finally the 20 lb Standard and 30 lb Standard plates were launched. When those two plates were created the previous 20 lb and 30 lb plates received the title “Expert” in their product name to differentiate them form the newer plates.
From using all of these plates I can say that I personally feel the 20 lb Standard and 30 lb Standard have a better use of space for rucking. They’re thinner and wider so they distribute the weight across your back more evenly and take up less of the depth of your pack. Of course that’s all preference but it’s what I’ve noticed.
10 lb vs 20 lb Expert
The width of the plates are identical which you’d also expect due to the sizing. The 10 lb plate is the least used plate in the gym. The only times it comes out are when: someone is very new to rucking, someone wants a little extra weight, someone is under 150 lbs and needs to borrow it for a GORUCK Light.
20 lb Expert vs 20 lb Standard
Here we’ve got the 20 lb Expert (right) next to the 20 lb Standard (left). You can see that the expert is wider and shorter while the standard is taller and skinnier. The new Standard plate is designed to fit into a Bullet Ruck so if you’re under 150 lbs you can rock that at a GORUCK Tough or if you’re over 150 you can rock it at a GORUCK Light.
Interestingly enough the thickness of the plates are nearly identical… with the expert being a few hundredths of an inch thicker.
30 lb Expert vs 30 lb Standard
… and as expected it’s much thicker.
30 lb Expert vs 45 lb Standard
… thickness. The 45 lb plate is much thicker than the 30 lb Expert. This makes complete sense because those extra 15 lbs have to come from somewhere!
Here’s the 30 lb plate sitting directly on top of the 45 lb plate… it’s hard to tell the 45 lb is even in the picture at all.
Ruck Plates in Rucker
The way the weight plates fit inside your pack is very important. If the weight is too low then you’ll feel it more on your lower back so we always recommend keeping the weight as high as possible. Here’s how all of the ruck plates sit by default in a 21 liter (current version) Rucker.
10 lb Ruck Plate
Can you even tell it’s there? We can’t.
20 lb Expert Ruck Plate
It hardly peaks out through the top of the sleeve.
30 lb Expert Ruck Plate
Very similar to the 20 lb Expert plate it hardly peaks out the top.
20 lb Standard Ruck Plate
The 20 lb Standard sticks well out of the top of the ruck plate holder which means it does a better job raising some of that weight.
30 lb Standard Ruck Plate
The 30 lb Standard sticks well out of the top of the ruck plate holder which means it also does a better job raising some of that weight off of your lower back.
45 lb Standard Ruck Plate
The 45 lb plate is a BEAST of a plate and takes up nearly the entire back of the Rucker. This is, in a way, nice because it at least distributes those 45 lbs over your entire back instead of lumping it all in one location.
Ruck Plate Usage
When it comes to using the Ruck Plates we have a preference. To us… it’s easier to ruck with the standard line of ruck plates (right out of the box) and then use the expert plates for PT and kettle bell style exercises. If you’re willing to do some work to raise your weight then the expert plates could be better for rucking as you can get more of their weight higher on the back. At that point, however, 30 lbs is 30 lbs and there probably won’t be much of a difference in feeling. The important part is just getting as much of it off your lower back as possible.
Do you have a preference between the two styles of ruck plates? Let us know… we’d love to hear about it in the comments!