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Eric C.

Eric C.

Eric C.'s Passions

Climbing
Hiking & Camping
Biking

Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on July 9, 2019

2 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

The magnetic buckle really ruins it all. Tiny rocks and grey rocky dust builds up on the buckle and it just doesn't stay buckled up. I have to blow on it, and wipe it with my thumb to clean it just enough that it "crunches" together. The slider bar for the back-of-the-head adjustment has a little 2mm notch of plastic that digs into my head when tightened down. I'm sure you can file it down, but that's also an annoyance. I have a little scab at the base of my skull because of the helmet.

It's really lightweight and provides great coverage. If they fix these small design flaws, would be happy to continue to use this. But as it is, I'd rather use other light-weight foam helmets.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on May 15, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Material feels tough ... like tougher than backpack webbing. It's comfortable to sit in, almost as comfortable as my Sama (although I did notice it a few times on the inside of my thighs ... tsk tsk). Also, the gear loops are sewn into the bottom of the waist belt, so I feel them digging into my back sometimes. Leg loops are on the smaller side (cyclists beware), but I still fit in w goretex pants.

For those who autoblock from the leg loop... the elastic band and the webbing are kind of flimsy, so there isn't a strong "nook" for the autoblock to settle in. So the autoblock kind of rides up higher than I expected.

The haul loop is 0kN. It's not really a loop. It's a flat "plasticy" strap sewn flat against the harness. So it's really hard to clip it. Honestly, I'll just trail a rope from the 5th gear loop if it's all 0kN back there.

The front gear loops are indeed longer than the standard BD solution. I can fit a single rack #0.3-#3 and a few draws in one loop (so I can carry a double rack all up front!). But they don't hang far out from your clothes (they're pretty close to the body), so I often snag my shirt when trying to re-clip. The Petzl Hirundos has a longer front gear loop by an inch or so. I imagine the Adjama has bigger front loops too? Those seem a tad bit more accessible to clip to me, than BD's stiff short gear loops. shrugs. I love the 5th gear loop at the back! The back of my harness feels like a garage where I just toss gear.

The strap tucks away on these stiff holders (just like the haul "loop") that really keeps it out of the way and doesn't snag into your gear, like in other harnesses.

I am satisfied with this harness... although I (I'm a California trad climber - goes for multipitch free-climbing mostly)

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on April 19, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

It takes about 1-3 days for it to fully dry. When it's dry, it stiffens the rope a bit. But it is super dark and very visible! It's only tested on a few manufacturers:

"Beal - Blue Water - Edelweiss - Camp - Lanex - Maxim by New England - Millet - PMI - Roca."

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on April 19, 2016

2 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I got a few as racking biners, but they're too small for even that! I find them difficult to clip/unclip from my harness/rack loops. When I was hanging off a crimp, and trying to jangle my blue X4 off my gear sling, I decided that I was done with them. There are better small/light options out there that out perform this biner.

When I have to bail, I will be leaving these behind on the mountain.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on October 28, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I own a grivel airtech, and a longer BD raven for glacier travel. I have the 52cm hammer version.

I brought this with me on a scramble that turned into a bit of mixed snow and rock. The curve and pick were excellent for aggressive front-pointing up steeper snow slopes. The T-rated shaft felt much sturdier when picking my way through the moraine. There was no glacier crossing, so I can't comment on that, but it does seem a bit short for flatter terrain.

The axe was very comfortable in my hand, much better ergonomics than the grivel. I would recommend this axe for technical climbing on steeper grades where you might encounter the occasional snow slope.

I did not get to test the self-arresting.

Also, I actually removed the trig-rest thing knowing that I would barely use it as a tool to 'save weight' but I'll stick it back on for later trips, I certainly swung this around like an icetool much more than I thought I would!

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on September 8, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

The Mega Jul is like an ATC that catches like a Grigri! It takes doubles, it cinches down on the rope in a fall, it's superlight, I've used it in my rope ascending system, the new-age skinnier ropes feed through with no problem. It takes 1st place for my belay device when in the mountains!

Cons? Fine there are some... it's confusing to use for top belaying my follow. But they put a little picture on the device. I bring along my Reverso (b/c why not?) for top belaying and as a backup.

thicker rope? I have an old 10.2 rope - but it still works, it just doesn't feel as smooth as a sub-10mm. A word of caution, an 8mm rope doesn't fully "lock" and will slip through like the mammut smart alpine (I've only tried this on a single 8mm standing on firm ground, maybe two 8mm in twin will still "lock").

Aluminum carabiner? Yes, the device is steel, and yes, it leaves small notches on your carabiner with use. No, it doesn't saw through aluminum biners like butter. I think that getting the steel Edelrid biner to pair is overkill. I use the old Petzl Attache.

I am extremely satisfied with this device and I think it's well suited for alpine climbing where functionality and weight are at a premium. If you're climbing at a gym or a frequent sport climber, I'd stick with the Grigri. If you like your device to 'slip a bit' so your sketchy cam placement doesn't pull, then stick with the ATC/Reverso.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on July 8, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I love this harness. It's the most comfortable harness I've used (compared to older sama's, BD momentum, Mammut zephir). And it is reasonably light. I think it has something to do with the angle of the leg loops - really comfortable when my partner is hang-dogging.

The nylon runs smoothly through the autolock plates, and there's plenty of space in the belay loop area for a variety of rope/cordage. I found room for my 7mm PAS, and twins in there.

The gear loops are a little floppy, especially the ones in the back, and it makes it harder to reach for gear (-1 star). I think the plastic molded gear loops of BD are better. But I like how it has the tiny loops for caritools. I just put in plastic REI biners to rack my stoppers.

I would pretty much use this harness for any kind of climbing - sport, trad, big-wall, alpine. Maybe you could get harnesses that are better for each specific type, but this one really is the jack of all at an affordable price.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on July 8, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

whooops, that title is suggestive. But its true.

the nylon sling is stiffer than BD nylon slings. Probably because its thicker in material. It's also very slippery, like BD nylon slings, and unlike DMM nylon slings. I don't think these qualities make the sling better or worse, but it's something to keep in mind. And maybe it'll 'break-in' with time? who knows.

So combined, the knots don't 'set' tightly the same way as the softer slings do - it makes it easier to undo the knots after they've been weighted. I used the blue 120cm sling a lot in the Rockies to tie off two-bolt anchors.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on July 7, 2015

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I thought the whole point of the webolette was to save weight over the standard 6 or 7mm cordalette? This baggy/equalizer combo is nearly as heavy.

The 10 foot metolius has about the same (or slightly less) length as my 7mm cordalette when building 3-piece anchors - so it has reasonably similar functionality... but you have to build the anchor in the webolette way. The full-loop cordalette is just more versatile in the mountains for a variety of uses like prussiking, looping around features, escaping belay, etc.

I would consider getting the mountain tools webolette, where you actually get a huge weight savings, or stick with some 7mm cord tied in a big loop.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on July 7, 2015

2 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I like small and light gear for alpine climbing. I've used the wild country astros, and BD oz, and Camp 23 and 22. I also have the small locking metolius biners.

These are not really great for racking. They are too small. The wiregates are stiff, stiffer than the other equivalently small/light biners. Whenever I grab for my gear on a metolius minibiner, I have to fight to get it off my sling. The opening is not really wide enough to clear the molded plastic loops on my sling while I'm trying to hold the gate open at the same time.

Also, there isn't a lot of space inside the biner for rope and a sling. Tying a cord into this with a clove hitch is possible... but still... you have to do it with care. So I wouldn't use these for draws either (unless I had to).

It's a light biner for sure - but the sacrifices to functionality are just too much to justify it for me. I'd consider other brands on the market - my favorite so far is the camp nano 22.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on July 2, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I've never used any other nut tool, so I have no basis for comparison.

Had this tool for 3 seasons. It has successfully freed every stuck pro in a variety of rock. Maybe the build of this nut tool has influenced how I clean pro... I don't 'hammer' or 'wrench' on my nut tool to get my pro out. I use it with more dexterity to free stuck pro. I worried that it might bend or break, but I haven't had this happen. It is incredibly light, I bring it on alpine climbs as well and the built in gate makes for easy racking.

The tip is rounding out from wear, but it has been 3 seasons. I see another 3-5 seasons before I will replace it with exactly the same nut tool.

I've used it to open beer bottles, but most tools can do that I guess?

EDIT: I am wrong about other tools opening beer bottles. None of my friend's other nut tools can do it - they don't have the little hook at the end! +1 for metolius feather nut tool.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on April 29, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I bought this maybe 5 years ago? It hasn't changed. It is the best chalkbag available in my opinion. It has a huge opening and is bigger than the other 'one-handed' bags, but just as light. Yes it is expensive - but I had mine snap recently against my back and a rock (the hard plastic ring that holds the opening wide) and Arcteryx is sending me a new one, so if you consider the life of the product, it is probably cheaper than other chalkbags that you'd have to replace.

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Eric C.

Eric C.wrote a review of on April 10, 2015

3 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it

I got a Medium Zephir, I usually wear a M Petzl Sama - I have 30" waist, 140lb 5'8" lean guy.

Pros:
1. God, it is light.
2. It is surprisingly comfortable for the width of loops and lack of padding.

Cons:
1. The leg loops do ride quite high into the crotch area (mentioned by other review). I extended the elastic strings at the back to max, and it still held the leg loops up against my other 'chalk bag'.

2. The leg loops are very narrow on the inside of the thigh, but oddly, very wide on the outside of the thigh where there isn't much pressure - added to discomfort slightly.

3. The fit was weird for me. The waist loop end 'slips' into a sleeve to keep things together, but it didn't really fit together for me, and it just bunched up. Maybe it would be different if I got a large.

4. The 'dyneema' connecting the leg loops to the belay loop is very narrow! I guess I trust them... but err... jesus they are narrow! and its thinner than a dyneema sling (but wider).

5. The belay loop is pretty small, as are the two points for rope tie in. I'm not sure I'd fit two twins in there + my PAS (and my second PAS! b/c I like to lobster claw). I'm not sure there's a lot of work area here for long climbs, or multipitch.

6. The rear gearloops are like vestigial structures... They might as well just fall off. And the front gear loops are pretty far back. They also flop around and aren't held out from the body. I haven't racked gear on the harness, but I imagine, it wouldn't be as easy as the BD's moulded gear loops.

Summary: Overall, it is a very full-featured super-light harness. It would be a contender for alpine situations where I want fast and light, but also want to rack some gear - I feel like the Petzl Hirundos would be in the same class. I would avoid this harness for gym, sport, multipitch, big-wall or trad. It sacrifices too much on the belay loop size, comfort, and racking.

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