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JBL

JBL

JBL's Passions

Climbing
Running
Hiking & Camping

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on May 22, 2018

Compatible with MSR Windburner
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Don't want to spend money on MSR windburner specific frying pan, pot, etc? Well, you don't have to, because this is compatible with MSR windburner personal system.
It won't be the most efficient heat transfer system, but I was able to make noodle for 3 people using 4L-ish pot.

Early Jan. It was around 30F or 0C and wind was 4m/s ish.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on November 20, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is really simple device and braking mechanism has no moving part.
It's somewhat expensive, but at least the package comes with quicklink, dogbone, Ohm, and carabiner.

Does it work? It works like a charm.
I weigh about 168lb and my partner weighs 120lb-ish. Ever since I started using Ohm, she stopped complaining about my weight. I even took a victory whip and she didn't go flying toward the wall.
Rope drag is barely noticeable.
Now, why get this when you can get a sandbag? Sandbag is heavy and can't be found everywhere.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on October 24, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: Runs small
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 167 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

I bought it thinking it would be nice to have a cheap shirt. After few trips, the shirt is still intact. I guess it's durable enough. It looks decent and it breaths really well.
I wear medium for most, but I had to buy large for this shirt.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on September 29, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I got them few years ago when I started lead climbing. Mad Rock Concorde are small, kind of heavy (Concorde carabiner is 40g, by comparison Petzl Djinn is 44g and Wild Country Helium is 34g), rubber stopper isn't durable, but you can't find anything cheaper than Concorde.

My biggest complain is that Mad Rock (for some reason) switched gray and orange carabiners around. Gray carabiner (rope side) wiregate has different contour than orange (bolt side) one. It's barely noticeable, but it's there. Most companies (and by extension, most people) will have colored carabiner on rope side and gray carabiner on bolt side. When you start mixing draws from other brand, you have to watch out for Mad Rock Concorde when you re-rack after completing a pitch and swapping gears.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on August 28, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

After using it for 2 years on both artificial walls and natural rocks, I'd like to give this 3.5 stars.

Good:
- Brake assistance (as in, it's there)
- Smooth Guide mode
- Big thumb hook
- Very very similar to ATC Guide (guide mode is slightly different)
- Nobody has it, so it's hard to get mixed up.

Bad
- Brake assistance is not perfect
- Heavier and larger than MegaJul
- Lowering in guide mode can be pain (compare to ATC Guide)
- Rappelling sucks
- Rappelling is smooth if you flip it, but it can be annoying to go up (ie testing rappel setup and shifting weight onto a rappel device before going down)
- Carabiner sensitive
- Slightly expensive.
- Feeding slack can be awkward at first (locks up easily)

All in all, it's a decent device with some minor annoyance, but no major flaw (as of yet). I'm looking forward to Smart 2.0 and eventually Smart Alpine 2.0 sometime in the future

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on August 24, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

This backpack carries well for how simple and light it is. It's somewhat expensive (not as expensive as Cilogear), but that's expected of any Arc'teryx product.

Despite every positive aspects of this backpack, I feel like Arc'teryx tried too hard to save every gram and it's too minimal for me. For example, Alpha FL45 has side loop webbing while Alpha FL30 doesn't. Not sure why.

It's missing other basic features that are found in other competitors and I wouldn't have minded extra 50g~100g for features that are lacking on this backpack.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on April 14, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I finally decided to buy my own cams after my partner (who has cams) moved to different city. I could have bought Black Diamond Ultralight, but I didn't want to spend extra $130 (or more) to shave off 239g.

BTW, I just wanted to say BackCountry, you guys are awesome for going extra mile and being flexible to work with my unique situation.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on April 13, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Con
- It's nicknamed as cowbell for a reason
- Cam is almost always better. Not always, but most of times (this varies on location).
- Some people will make fun of you. In which case, you can grab a sling and swing your hex. It's a great weapon.
- Good luck trying to place a hex while you are pumped.

Pro
- It's a great weapon.
- Light
- Extendable sling
- Cheap

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on April 13, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 165 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

It weighs very little (I guess that's subjective), which means I carry one everywhere even if it stays in the pack the whole trip.
It doesn't restrict arm movement and it's very breathable; great combination if you are looking for a jacket for climbing.
I've used it during ice climbing and I didn't feel water soaking through midlayer, so I know it's water resistance.
It's filed under one of the best purchases for under $100.
Great bang for buck

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on March 31, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 170 lbs
Size Purchased: M

To continue my quest to wast.... I mean invest more money on climbing, I started ice climbing last winter. So far, I only had to sell my left kidney and what I find at home yet don't expect. But I digress.
I quickly realized I don't have a good midlayer/outerlayer jacket, because I was shivering during belaying. After asking around, I picked Xenon (not this one, I bought BackCountry exclusive one, because it was cheaper). So far, I love it and it saddens me that I have to put it away, because winter is over.
It is really light, yet surprisingly warm. Maybe too warm.
And there lies it's only fault: it's too good of insulator and not breathable.
But it's hella better than freezing.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on August 15, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I needed oval carabiners for my rope clamp (the manual specifically said I should use an oval locking carabiner).
If I had a unlimited fund, I would have bought Petzl OK locking carabiners ($24 per piece), but since I didn't, I had to settle with Mammut Wall Micro Oval Locking Carabiners.
Which is not to say Mammut Wall Micro Oval carabiner is inferior. It's not outstanding, but considering price and brand reputation, it's a solid carabiner.
If you are looking for a decent oval carabiner, but can't spend too much money, this is a good choice.
Could be slightly bigger, but the name literally had the word, "micro", so I don't know what I expected.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on June 29, 2016

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 171 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

The way this jacket is designed, reaching both my arms upward is very awkward. This doesn't help me climb.
The jacket is fine for hiking, going to a school or anything that doesn't require arm movements.
Maybe I can see myself using this for belaying, but not for climbing.
The jacket itself is okay, it fits nicely, water resistance is superb, but since I bought it for climbing it only gets 3 stars.

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JBL

JBLwrote a review of on June 28, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

I listened to "Fits Slightly Small" and bought a size up. I wear 33 waist, so I bought 34.
This thing runs little large on me (I can't wear without a belt). Later bought 32 and it fits great.

Wish side pocket was 1/2" wider

Great pants for hiking or climbing or casual stuff.

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