What is a Stack Home Gym? How is Each Model Different?

Stack-Home-Gym-Adjusting-Stack

Last Updated on April 6, 2021 by MarcyPro

We recently wrote a very similar blog to this one: What is a Smith Machine and How is Each Model Different? It was an incredibly popular blog as it answers a lot of important basic questions. As a result, we’d like to keep giving the public what they want with this blog.

Too long, don’t want to read? Scroll to the bottom of the blog for a feature comparison chart

You’ve likely seen stack gyms at club gyms but never bothered to tinker with it. Like smith machines, stack gyms can be a bit intimidating and confusing. These units are fairly simple; stack gyms are multi-station home gyms that have resistance coming from their weight stack and pulley system.

Stack gyms vary heavily depending on the brand or style. As a result, we will primarily focus on Marcy Stack Home Gyms which are all similar, but have their interesting differences.

As for the similarities, there are many. The most commonly asked question for Marcy Stack Home Gyms is – can I add more weight to the stack? Unfortunately, we have yet to create a stack home gym on which you can add weight. Marcy currently carries 150lb stack home gyms and a 200lb stack home gym as of January 2020. Though that may change in the future, there are no current plans to change the weight maximums.

Stack-Machine-Leg-Developer

All the Marcy Stack Home Gyms have a similar layout in which the seat can only be upright. The stack system connects to the lower pulley to allow for a wide variety of exercises. In use with the leg developer, the lower pulley allows for leg extensions. In use with the ankle strap / handle / or bar (depending on the model you get,) you can do a variety of leg curls, bicep curls, and more.

In addition, the lower pulley can be used with a bar (included with most models,) and the footplate for seated rows.

The upper pulley can be used along with the lat bar for various versions of lat pull downs. Utilize the upper pulley along with the handle (included with some models,) for cable crossover type exercises and more. Finally, purchase a Tricep Rope separately for triceps pull downs.

The final similarity between all the models would be the dual action butterfly / press arms. Easily change the angle of the arms to complete chest presses with the press arms. Alternatively, change the angle again to complete butterfly presses.

Stack-Home-Gym-Lower-Pulley

Before the differences, we have to address the most common question asked amongst those on Marcypro.com – What is the difference between the MWM-988, MWM-990, and MWM-1005. The answer, may not be satisfying, but it is finally here on the internet. There only difference between the MWM-988, MWM-990, and MWM-1005 is the appearance. Otherwise, the models are virtually the same.

Phew, happy to say that is finally settled! The MWM-988, MWM-990, and MWM-1005 have all the features described above. Now, on to the two other stack home gyms: MWM-4965 and MKM-81010. 

The MWM-4965 is very similar to the MWM-988 / MWM-990 / MWM-1005, except for one key feature the MWM-4965 has: the center pulley. The center pulley can be used for a wide variety of exercises when using the handle. However, the main purpose of the center pulley is to utilize the ab attachment.

The MWM-4965 Stack home Gym includes an ab attachment (it looks like a pair of handles that sit on your shoulders.) The ab attachment connects to the center pulley; complete seated crunches with the ab attachment to easily add weight to your crunches.

Marcy_150lb_Stack_Home_Gym_MWM-4965_Ab_Attachment_in_use

The MKM-81010 is a monster of a stack home gym that includes a 200lb stack. Other than the larger stack, the other key difference is the amount of room you have while sitting on this unit. Because of the extra room and the ability of the press arms to move far back, you can sit on this unit backwards (with your chest facing the stack,) and do seated rows!

The most important reason to own a Marcy stack home gym aside from efficiency is the types of exercises you can do at home. Once thought to only be accessible with a gym membership, stack gyms bring home lat pull downs, lower pulley workouts, upper pulley workouts, and butterfly presses.

And, we love dropping the fun fact that Bruce Lee owned a Marcy Multi-Station Home Gym. Though it is different from the stack home gyms we make today, it embraced the same concept. The Marcy Gym Bruce Lee owned was compact and efficient so he could get the strict weight lifting workouts out of the way and focus on the rest of his training.

No matter which type of Gym equipment you need, Marcy has what will work best for you!

Marcy Stack Home Gym Comparison Chart

28 Comments

  1. When it says max weight, what does this mean? Is it the individuals actual weight plus the stack weight? Or is is just max individual weight? Thanks. Will wait for your response.

    Respectfully

    Mac

    1. Hello William! Thank you for your message. The max weights referenced above is the maximum amount of stack weights on a given home gym (for example, a 150lb stack weight gym cannot have more than 150lb of weight plates on it.) Please let us know if you have any additional questions, have an awesome day!

      1. Hi MarcyPro team,

        Sorry but I’m still don’t get it, for example the model MWM-990 said that it come with 150lb, but in the specifications said “Maximum Weight Capacity: 300lb” what does that mean?

        a) It means that a some sub-model can come with up to 300lb, and the 150lb cannot be increase it?
        or
        b) The 150lb can be increased the weight with additional plates up to 300lbs?

        Thank you

        1. Hello Marco!

          We apologize for the confusion, and thank you for reaching out to us! The 300lb maximum is the maximum user weight.

          The 150lb stacks have 150lbs of weight plates (but the resistance varies depending on the station. The station resistance can be found on page 13 of the MWM-990 manual.)

          If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact at Marcypro.com – have an awesome day!

  2. I just put together and used my Marcy MWM 990. I love this machine . Marcy is a solid fitness equipment manufacturer. I sold my Marcy MWM 988 to purchase the new model; however it was still working great after 3 years.

    1. Hello JB, thank you for your question! You cannot add any additional plates on top of the 150lb included with your unit. If you have any additional questions, please feel free to reach out to us via live chat on Marcypro.com. Have an awesome day!

  3. Thank you for clearing up the mystery between the MK 990 and 988. I thought they were the same except for the color. With that in mind, I have decided to purchase the MK 81010 as soon as they are available. Get one in and send me an email and it’s a done deal – sold

  4. Before the virus I worked out at the gym 3 times weekly. I got tired of waiting for it to open again, so I ordered an 81010 on the 14th precisely at 11 am. It hasn’t shipped yet and I’m anxious to get back into a routine. I’m 73 years old so hurry up guys, I’ve got no time to waste. Don’t let age stop you. At the gym I outperformed some people 1/2 my age. Stay safe and healthy…

    1. Hello! Thank you for supporting Marcy products!

      Please contact our live chat personnel Monday – Friday, 9:00AM – 4:30PM if you have any additional questions regarding your order.

      Have an awesome day!

  5. The MWM-4965 model says it includes the “preacher curl arm pad” in the comparison chart. However, neither the pictures or manuals confirm this to be true. Can you please elaborate if the pad is included or if can be purchased separately to add to that model?

    1. Hello Rosy V! Thank you for bringing this issue to our attention, the MWM-4965 does not have a preacher curl pad. The chart was fixed immediately.

      You would currently be unable to purchase a separate preacher curl pad to add it to the MWM-4965, we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

      If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us at Marcypro.com – Have an awesome day!

  6. Can you please explain how the 150 pound stacks can produce about 200 pounds depending on the exercise being performed.

    1. Good Morning Christopher, thank you for your message! Each stack has a different level of resistance depending on which station is used. We made a note to have that information added to this blog; you can find the resistance charts for each unit in their owner’s manual (found on their Marcypro.com listing.) For additional details, please reach out to the live chat on Marcypro.com – have an awesome day!

    1. Hello Mike Lynch!

      Thank you for reaching out to us! All moving parts should be lubricated periodically.

      We recommend using silicone based lubricant as oil based lubricant gets a bit mucky over time.

      If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact us at any time here or at Marcypro.com – have an awesome day!

    1. Hello Carol!

      Thank you for your message. The MWM-988 and MWM-1005 are virtually the same. The only difference is aesthetic. As a result, you can do the same exercises on both devices. The MWM-1005 comes with one less weight plate (totaling 140lbs,) but the resistance breakdown is about the same.

      The resistance breakdown for the MWM-1005 can be found on page 13 of the manual: https://www.marcypro.com/content/Product_Manuals/Home_Gyms/MWM-1005%20owners%20manual%207-27-2018%20-%20English%20-%20Final.pdf

      If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact us at any time, have a joyful day!

    1. Hello Frank Cabezu, thank you for your message! We sincerely apologize, an ab attachment is not available for the MKM-81010 (only the MWM-4965 has an ab attachment.)

      If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact us at Marcypro.com – Have an awesome day!

  7. Good day, how can i find out what model I own? It was purchased second hand and it is missing the safety cover on the stack. Let me know if i can send you pictures if the machine? The model number is know where to be found on this unit. I also need to purchase a new cable for it.

    1. Hello, thank you for reaching out!

      If you do not have the manual or product box, your best bet would be to open a ticket and submit an image of your product at this link: https://marcypro.com/support

      Thank you in advance for your patience and efforts, have an awesome day!

    1. Hello Rafael!

      Yes, the weight plates from the MWM-988 and MWM-1005 are exactly the same; on all of our stack gyms, however, we recommend not going above 150lbs in plates.

      Thank you for supporting Marcy products. If you have any additional questions, please feel free to reach out to us at Marcypro.com or here – have an awesome day!

  8. Can you recommend a cover for the 990? The only room for it is on our covered patio so I want to protect it as much as possible.

    1. Hello Christine M Murphy!

      Thank you for your message. Though the MWM-990 has a powder coating to protect it from rusting, we do not recommend keeping the unit outside as the changes in weather over time will increase the likelyhood of the item rusting.

      Because we do not recommend keeping the unit outside, we do not have a particular recommendation for a cover.

      If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at Marcypro.com – have an awesome day!

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