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Shave weight with this super-packable touring pole.
When you're ten hours into an all-day splitboard mission, it's getting dark fast, and you still have three miles to get back to the car, every ounce matters. Though, thanks to the feather-light Black Diamond Carbon Compacter Ski Pole, you might just make it back to the car without your arms falling off. Engineered exclusively for packable touring, the three-piece carbon fiber shaft features Black Diamond's own Z-Pole technology with Speed Cone Deployment. This system enables the pole to quickly deploy to full length simply by holding the handle, releasing the basket pole capture, and allowing the pole to snap into shape. This system allows for an extremely compact and secure packing configuration, making it perfect for splitboarding, air travel, and expeditions.
- A lightweight and packable pole for splitboarding
- Tough yet durable carbon fiber pole offers longevity
- Z-Pole technology ensures easy use
- Integrated rubber grip extension
- Powder baskets included
- Item #BLD00KP
- Q & A
Great until they break
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
These poles are great until they break. I used these splitboard touring for a season with no issues. The carbon ones freeze up a lot less than the aluminum ones, in my experience, which is a nice benefit.
They are super light and I had no issues with their function for a year of use until the epoxy holding the metal connector ferrules within the carbon tubes failed. This causes the metal ferrule that sticks into the upper pole section to fall into or even out of the lower carbon section, and the pole loses stiffness, could break the carbon tube, or won't assemble at all. See the picture which shows the metal ferrule once the glue has failed and it has started sliding into the lower tube. As shown there, the pole is pretty rickety when assembled, and when it goes the rest of the way in, or falls out completely, the pole won't assemble at all.
There are other reports of this around the web as well: check the BD website for a couple other reviews describing the "nunchuck effect". Apparently it also occurs where the metal piece comes out of the lower section and gets stuck inside the upper pole. Some reports have it happening after only a handful of tours. This is definitely a warranty issue and I'm sure BD will replace the poles, but that doesn't help at the bottom of your run when your poles don't assemble.
It may be possible to salvage in the backcountry, just try and reposition the ferrules without losing them inside the carbon tubes. Be very careful to not disassemble the pole's innards (the plastic adjuster screw) when trying to fix it. It won't help you fix it, and if the innards get pulled inside the upper tube they are extremely hard to get back out. You will need to fish them out with a coat hanger or a long piece of thin, threaded rod back at home.
I removed the ferrule which was loose and gave it a coat of epoxy and will test out how that works, hopefully that solves the issue!
I hope BD can come up with a fix for this issue, because I love the way these poles work when they're functional!
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Often too little is talked about in terms of poles. And to some people it doesn't matter, use whats cheap or you already have. Other people (gear nerds like myself) might have 2 or 4 pairs.. I got these as a warranty replacement to older carbon compactor poles and much to my delight the issues that ended up breaking the pole had been addressed with these. Where the pin to lock or collapse the pole was and started to splinter the upper section of pole until if finally broke. The green metal ring fixes that issue. So, why carbon compactor poles anyway?!?! For me, the biggest things came down to size and weight. Being able to fold so short opens up storage options when pack space becomes an issue. And on a long enough timeline, we all become "weight weenies". On those mile long sufferfest and peaks that just keep staying in the distance (Pikers Peak....) my mind starts weighing everything I brought and counting the poor choices I made along the way. Thats why.
The performance is awesome aside from the size\weight.
Downsides: Cost more than a used splitboard. Not compatible with some snow saws. Durability, you can't treat these like a stiffer 3 piece telescoping pole.
All in all I feel like these are a huge improvement over aluminum compactor poles and over previous versions of the carbon version. They might not be for everyone, but those that choose to get them won't be dissapointed.
I believe this is a set of (2) poles? That's how BD advertises them on their site but the image and description here suggest they are sold individually?
Also, since they are sold in different sizes I assume they are not adjustable?
Hi Jared, These poles are going to come as a set. And you're right, they are sold in fixed lengths (non adjustable). If you have any other questions, reach out to me directly and I'll get you taken care of. - Matthew Pizza - Customer Account Manager