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Description

Built for belaying.

Metolius gave the Element Key Lock Belay Carabiner a pear shape with round bar stock to make belaying effortless and secure. The keylock gate keeps this Metolius carabiner from snagging on anything when you're clipping and unclipping gear. Metolius made this carabiner just large enough that you can use it with a Munter hitch, but not one bit bigger, so you don't have to carry around any extra aluminum.

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Review Summary
5
4 4
6 3
7 2
4 1
4

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Metolius Element Key Lock Belay Carabiner

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Here's what others have to say...

4 5

A Freakin Workhorse

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

at first, I really wanted to like this thing. If you don't know about metolius, they're a phenomenal company. they climb. they experiment. they give us great products. These guys really are the stereotype of climbers-gone-equipment-manufacturers.
I used it as a belay and against my wishes, just wasn't pleased. it takes soooo many turns to unlock this thing, in the gym, its rather inconvenient. (Ive switched to the magneto for that and LOVE it.)
This led to me beating the absolute mess out of my set of three of these guys outdoors and really growing fond of them.
Ive been doing quite a bit of climbing photography lately which to do right means rigging all sorts of contraptions and zipping up and down lines, wearing carabiners all the while. my goal of just demolishing these fellas truly proved their worth in my opinion. though I wouldn't pick them for a belay, Id actually use them for just about every other task a little carabiner could do. absolutely bomber. just a workhorse.

Plus its a pear shape, prob the most versatile shape out there. just great for anything and everything

Note: these little buddies are quite small by comparison to a standard carabiner. in my experience, this is 80% of the time a plus. you can always get further away, but that half inch actually makes a substantial difference when you need to get close.

5 5

Beard Worthy Biner

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Excellent carabiner; I constantly trust my life with this product. Mine have been through rain, shine, ice, and the sands of time and are still my go-tos. My only complaint is that they are a bitch to open if it's cold out.

Beard Worthy Biner
a couple years later

a couple years later

Posted on

Not too much wear given how long I've owned it.

2 5

the unwanted middle sibling

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This biner wishes it could be larger, smaller, lighter, and heavier at the same time. The durability and lock are good- maybe too good- but the size is off and for its limited uses the weight is too high for a non-belay locker. With skinny cords it works fine for belaying but who belays only on a 9.2 single? I've also gotten the screw gate stuck to the point of needing vice grips, which isn't so good. I obviously haven't used these in the alpine yet.

3 5

Too Small

  • Familiarity: I've used it several times

This locker is just too small while belaying or rappelling. Especially while rappelling, it is difficult to clip around the belay loop on any harness. I'd recommend a larger locker for those looking for a new belay locking biner.

Size comparison with BD Airlock...

Size comparison with BD Airlock...

Posted on

5 5

Preferred belaying biner!

  • Gender: Male
  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is my go to belaying biner. It's a little narrow for rappelling off double ropes. With it's smaller size, the biner is easier to manage and less likely to cross load. It's shape lends to super smooth rope handling and the lack of a hook prevents the rope or cord from binding up in the gate. The gate is a bit off center, which causes it to grind a bit when opening and closing. Also, the locking sleeve has to travel a bit further than my other locking biners. These things in mind, this is still my #1 locking biner for belaying. Would I use it for anything besides belaying? Likely not. A+ metolius!

Responded on

In response to what others have said about the gate squeaking, and my own comments about the grinding effect.... these issues disappear with use.

4 5

Really nice Locker

It is really nice right now it is on my grigri. I will say that it is a little small I prefer the Petzl attache. However I do prefer the price of the metolius much more. The action on it is very nice also and all around good product.

5 5

Love these, my goto biener

  • Gender: Male
  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These little carabieners are great for a lot of things but like everything else in the world, not the right choice for everything that you may do. They have been with me through dirty sandstone canyons, climbing sport & Trad routes, high angle rescue work,... , they have never let me down. The round shape reduces friction when hauling & the small size is convenient.
These are always on my tether for quick easy attachment to an anchor. Red & green aids in quick ID'ing whatever it is attached to, wish they had more colors. No need to over-tighten the gate, so never an issue with unscrewing it. Theses are tough, small, light & strong.

2 5

Gate screw ruins it.

The size is nice, but as others have mentioned:
- The screwgate squeaks and feels shoddy.
- The screwgate becomes hard to unscrew after the biner has been weighted.
- It requires about twice as many turns to screw/unscrew compared to other popular screwgate lockers.
- If there's snow around the screw anywhere, you're going to have quite a tough time escaping from the biner's clutches.

Responded on

Agreed. Also even if it's mildly cold the screw feels extra sticky.

4 5

Belaying Carabiner

This is a great carabiner for belaying. The fact that it has a round stock means it will add friction to the rope and wear less on the rope. Yes it does have a somewhat slow locking action. However if you put a few drops of gun oil between the locking sleeve and the gate all you have to do is flick it and it will spin open and shut on its own.

Responded on

Gun oil? Many many brands of gun oil also contain solvents, so you'd better use a lubricant that won't damage nylon (as in the belay loop).

4 5

Great Biner

Haven't had a chance to use the biner, but looks like a roomy belay device.

3 5

Meh

They work I guess would be the point of this. This is a locking carabiner and so far its worked well enough for making sure a biner doesn't open unexpectedly, but there is nothing special about this model other than it may be a little small for most uses of a locking biner. I tend to find myself locking off gear on anchors to create a fully closed system with these.

Is this a good rappel biner for a twin...

Posted on

Is this a good rappel biner for a twin rope system?

Responded on

It will work if you want something small. Otherwise consider the Petzl Attache or the Wild Country Synergy for something bigger.

Responded on

I have the Petzl Attache and the DMM Big Boa, the Boa is my main belay biner.

2 5

snakes

Not going to lie... these things are a pain in the *** to screw open and closed. for the price you can get better.

Responded on

Also.. they're a bit on the small side for a belay biner.

4 5

Great for a set and forget

  • Gender: Male
  • Familiarity: I've used it several times

A little small for my bear paws to use, but work pretty well for simple anchors and other tasks where I don't need to fuss with them too much.
Works really well with a personal anchor system. The unique color makes it unmistakable, though the small size makes setting it when you're tweaked a little more difficult.
Follow-up. It breaks my heart to say but I dropped it at the top of a pitch. I don't know what went wrong, but it's now retired. I'll have to buy a replacement.

1 5

Update

My previous review stated my overall dissatisfaction with this biner, but a recent experience has made things worse.

I let a friend borrow my PAS, which had the element attached to it, for cleaning a route. While at the top and in the process of cleaning the top rope anchor the screwlock on the element biner over tightened itself on the rock somehow, and tightened over the threads making it impossible to unscrew. When he tried explaining this to me from the top of the route I thought he was just pumped and couldn't unscrew it, but this wasn't the case. I ended up having to climb up there, cut him out of a loop of my PAS, and he rappeled down.

This wasn't the best way to end a day of climbing. Although this may be a rare case I won't be buying an element again no matter how cheap.

3 5

Works fine, doesn't thrill me

It works fine, but the element key lock feels a bit small and cheap as a belay 'biner. I'm sure it's plenty safe, but the screw-gate could do to be a bit smoother and easier to unlock. Given the choice between the Element and other options, the Element usually gets relegated to the second string.

4 5

Good belay carabiner

Like other reviewers have said, the sleeve takes more turns than BD locking biners... but the smooth shape, small size, and light weight mean I'll be keeping this one and using it for belaying.

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