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joeforte


May 18, 2005, 8:23 AM
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Ok, So I'm looking into building a budget trad rack, and I found some good deals on full sets of rock empire cams. The only problem is that I'm not sure which set to get. The Pulsar Set (7 cams) covers a greater range, but is a U stem design. The Durango set (8 cams) (formerly trango flex cams?) covers a smaller range of cracks, and is a single stem design. Which stem type should I get? Both cost $219 What are some of the design limitations to these two styles, and how should I make my choice? The sets are on this page : http://www.rockempire.com/catalog?category=cams

Please teach me a lil something about cams!

Thanks for the help


trenchdigger


May 18, 2005, 8:43 AM
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In reply to:
Ok, So I'm looking into building a budget trad rack, and I found some good deals on full sets of rock empire cams. The only problem is that I'm not sure which set to get. The Pulsar Set (7 cams) covers a greater range, but is a U stem design. The Durango set (8 cams) (formerly trango flex cams?) covers a smaller range of cracks, and is a single stem design. Which stem type should I get? Both cost $219 What are some of the design limitations to these two styles, and how should I make my choice? The sets are on this page : http://www.rockempire.com/catalog?category=cams

Please teach me a lil something about cams!

Thanks for the help

Have you ever used cams before? You really should before you buy. Use as many as possible. Try different friends' gear, ask what they like and dislike about what they have, and why. What it all boils down to is personal preference.

Personally, I'd prefer the single stem. More flexible and lighter than the U stem.

~Adam~


tradklime


May 18, 2005, 8:51 AM
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The best deal on cams right now are the DMM's. Check out Pagangear.com or REI.


Partner gunksgoer


May 18, 2005, 8:52 AM
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Yeah, go for the DMMs. Theyre a great deal now and much better than rockempire.


joeforte


May 18, 2005, 9:07 AM
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What makes the DDM's better? For a full set I would be paying much more than with the Durangos or the Pulsars. Also, I don't see the DDM's in a single stem design. Is this a limitation? of all the cams I've played with, I seemed to like the single stem design better .... especially in vertical cracks. Any more input on which brand, type, and range cams I should get? I've budgetet about $250 for cams.


Partner jammer


May 18, 2005, 9:08 AM
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Then you have ebay ...


Partner hosh


May 18, 2005, 9:11 AM
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DON'T LET PRICE BE THE DECIDING FACTOR.



hosh.


killclimbz


May 18, 2005, 9:12 AM
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Wilderness Exchange still has a bunch of BD C4 cams that are blems for 15% off of retail. In a lot of people's opinion some of the best cams around. I have to agree if you don't have experience mix and match from a few different types of cams. You'll quickly learn which ones you really like in the field. I have at least 4 different types of cams on my rack.


mistertyler


May 18, 2005, 9:30 AM
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I'll second what hosh said. Find out which cams you like the most, prioritize which sizes you need first, and buy them as you can. If you buy stuff just because you can afford it, you risk having it sit underused on your rack or, worse, unused in your closet.


craftedpacket


May 18, 2005, 9:50 AM
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I own a full set of the comet cams, which are really nice single stem. They are very similar to the trango flex cams that rock empire is now selling. They are all made in the same factory. The cam action of the comets is nice, and they have machined cam stops. If you look at the range of the pulsars, and then the range of the comets, there is a big difference. The comet cam set has 8 cams and doesn't cover the same range as the pulsars 7 cam set. I haven't looked into the individual size in the pulsars, but you most likely don't get much to any overlap in sizes, with possible big gaps in the cam size. The biggest pulsar reaches 5.75 inches while the biggest comet is only 3.5 inches. Definitely look into the sizes and compare them to the routes you will be climbing. You can always buy a few larger cams if you find you need them. But definitely pick up many different brands at the store or from friends and decide what feels the best to you before making a purchase.

For some of us, price is a deciding factor. We cant all shell out 500-700 bucks for a set of cams. The rock empire cams are a solid, certified device that will hold the same falls as similar camming devices. I think they are great for building a starter rack until you can afford more expensive devices down the road if you see the need.


angelaa


May 18, 2005, 9:55 AM
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Well - you say you're starting a 'budget' trad rack!
and you're only mentioning cams. . . .

Does your rack have a full set of nuts and a full set of tri-cams?
Those are a great way to start out a trad rack, and if you just HAVE to have cams on this new rack, you don't need to buy them ALL at once.

You're probably only going to use slotted hand to fist size in cams right away, unless you have a specific climb in mind that you know needs a certain size.

Try just buying a few - and slowly acquiring them as you go along - that way price isn't a deciding factor!

BUT - I will second Wilderness Exchange! GREAT STORE!


tonedawk


May 18, 2005, 10:09 AM
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I made the mistake of buying some cheaper cams when I first started building my rack... play with them. The ones you like the best are the ones you should go with regardless of price. In the end when you are sketching, and fooling with gear the best gear is gonna save you


raymondjeffrey


May 18, 2005, 10:09 AM
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If you are just starting a trad rack don't forget the Metolius Cams with Range Finder. They really assist the new leader in finding the optimum cam for the different cracks. Also get an equalizing anchor sling.

Carry On,

Raymond


tonedawk


May 18, 2005, 10:10 AM
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I made the mistake of buying some cheaper cams when I first started building my rack... play with them. The ones you like the best are the ones you should go with regardless of price. In the end when you are sketching, and fooling with gear the best gear is gonna save you


robreglinski


May 18, 2005, 10:20 AM
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right before you read this post read and understand my post in this thread

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...7512&p=954289#954289

its mid way down the second page.

if you are happy with spending some money then you have to consider the following. Cheap cams are cheap for a reason, i started with a few HB flexi units and although they did fine for learning with they all knackered now and i don’t trust them. in fact they are coming aid climbing to Yose’ with me and not coming back.

it is my honest opinion that you should spend more on Cams

first off learn how they work and understand the phyisics behind them (rich coming from me but you should do it). there are a few brands out there so here we go:
note this is not for big cams
WC: http://www.wildcountry.co.uk/.../frameshardware.html

these guys are the cam, the first cam. they are medium in weight have 13.5 cam angle single stem with a large inflexible join.

DMM: http://www.dmmwales.com/ this site is crap

these are copies of the WC lobes (ie same 13.5 angle) but they are lighter. The U steam makes them a few mm thinner than their WC counterparts but aids walking. they come complete with the nifty quick extender which i love. color coded krabs are good too. They have a smaller inflexible join

there are 2 types four lobe and three lobe:
3 lobes wont walk as easy as 4 lobes and weight less but 4 lobes are more stable

BD: http://www.bdel.com/gear/camalots.php

the new C4s are very nice units sporting the same double axle system as there brothers the Camelot. they are light but not as light as the DMM. thumb loop instead of thumb stud is good in winter and for aid. the sling is nylon not dynemma which will degrade in UV light. they have good holding power due to their double axle system and the expansion range is impressive because the cam angle is larger (i dont know the value as BD wont tell me) they have a varying length inflexible join

CCH: http://www.marmotmountain.com/...Detail&StyleID=11151 not the real site but the best I could do

the Alien is the small cam to buy they have the greatest holding power:expansion range on the market (the two counter act each other but you knew that because you know how they work) these guys are good in winter too.

Metolius: http://www.metoliusclimbing.com/camshome.htm

They produce three units

Super cams: that I know nothing about and wont pertend too

Power cams: these guys are medium weight but the winning factor here is that the lobes are close together making walking harder. It also makes them less stable but that’s something you have to weigh up

Fat Cams: are bigger

I think there is another one in there with 3 lobes but I can remember if there is same deal as with the DMM units stability verus walking

these are nice units very smooth well finished however they have a very low holding power due to a larger cam angle thus they are more likely to fail in wet placements or in flared cracks.

WC0's: http://www.wildcountry.co.uk/.../frameshardware.html

the only sizes worth looking at are the 3 larger ones. they are nice units with total flexibility to the head of the cam this means they can be used on bottoming placements. However the contact area between the lobes and the rock is very small so the placement has to be very clean or they will fail

WC forged with gunks tie off: now we are going old school. These are heavy but will do the job over and over and over. The Gunk’s tie off makes these guys work very well in horizontals. Same specs as the WC above just harder wearing.

What you have to do weight up the advantages of all the above units remember that the larger the cam angle the more easily the unit will pop. But smaller cam angles require more units to cover the range.

That’s the technical stuff but as was said above get a hold of these things and play with them because trust in your gear is very important and if it comes down to liking one thing over another than that’s good enough.

If you want more on cams then go here

http://www.needlesports.com/nutsmuseum/camsstory.htm

or WC produce a Cam book wich is ace

Spend it wisly
Rob

hope it helps :D

PS i use WC and DMM


Partner climboard


May 18, 2005, 10:22 AM
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I agree with all the others on trying a few different brands and purchasing the ones you like regardless of price.

If you can't afford all of them now, buy fewer now and build up your rack slowly.


baigot


May 18, 2005, 10:34 AM
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Don´t let the Brand or the price be a deciding Factor...

For example, BD Camalots are greater for cam coverture but are expensive and heavier than other brands/models...

I have a Complete 8 pieces of Robots (Rock Empire). In my experience with those cams, i can tell there´re lighter than a bounch of other cams, have much more resistance (9-15 Kn) than others, and are cheap than other cams.
The bigger sizes tends to walk a little but no so much like the Camalot-lovers tend to say...
They also have Dyneema double web, to make web longer if you are in Alpine terrains or compicated Trads.
OOOuu, I forgot it. They have the Cams Stop build-in the cam, so you can use it (ONLY in extreeme situations) in a stopper way. (in my case holds me well in one fall, but i don´t use it often, well never)

I love Rock Empire, solid and well-finished construction and good price.

GOOD FOR NOOBIES AND PROS...

In my opinion,

Vicente
Argentina


tradklime


May 18, 2005, 10:36 AM
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In reply to:
What makes the DDM's better? For a full set I would be paying much more than with the Durangos or the Pulsars. Also, I don't see the DDM's in a single stem design. Is this a limitation?
You really need to play with them to know, but they are just better quality, and they are extremely light weight. The best U-stem cam made, in my opinion.

Regarding the u-stem, its entirely personal preference. I happen to be an alien fanatic, and would NOT consider anything else in the smaller sizes (unless i was perhaps buying triples or more). I will say that the U-stem is much less of an "issue" with larger sizes.

In reply to:
of all the cams I've played with, I seemed to like the single stem design better .... especially in vertical cracks. Any more input on which brand, type, and range cams I should get? I've budgetet about $250 for cams.
Single stem and under $250...., that really limits your options. Perhaps that makes your decision for you, unless you are willing to fork over more $. If not, the single stem rock empire cams are probably the best bet in that $$ range.


However, I still say that if you arre on a budget, the DMM's currently offer the best value. I would buy them over the single stem rock empires, and I don't like u-stem cams for anything under 2 inches.


crito


May 18, 2005, 10:58 AM
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The suggestion made earlier regarding stoppers and tricams is a good one. I would add dont forget hexes. i climbed for two seasons with just nuts and hexes when I first started climbing trad routes. Depending on which routes you choose, nuts and hexes provide totally adequate protection and are a whole lot lighter than a rack full of cams. A lot of moderate routes were first climbed before cams were even thought of so dont think you have to have cams to go trad climbing; learning to use nuts and hexes is an essential skill dont pass it up becasue cams seem easier to place.

As far as cams go though, I would agree dont make your purchase based on price only. Some cams such as Camalot C4s are more expensive than other similar camming devices, but they also have a greater range than other similar cams which means you get more for your money. you have to balance price with preformance.

As for the DMM cams, they may be cheaper but the spring action is real stiff which I dont care for as much.


robreglinski


May 18, 2005, 11:09 AM
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range (ie cam angle) and holding power counter act each-other

its a delicate balance!!!!!

Range alone is not a great reason to buy a unit.


asandh


May 18, 2005, 11:10 AM
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:)


tradklime


May 18, 2005, 11:38 AM
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Not to pick on you but...

In reply to:
the Alien is the small cam to buy they have the greatest holding power:expansion range on the market (the two counter act each other but you knew that because you know how they work)
How do you quantify this? What do you base this assertion on?

In reply to:
these are nice units very smooth well finished however they have a very low holding power due to a larger cam angle thus they are more likely to fail in wet placements or in flared cracks.
To many factors to really make this a statement of fact. Along with material types, rock types, etc. there is a mathmatical component related to flares that makes the a sometimes/ sometimes not statement.

In reply to:
WC forged with gunks tie off: now we are going old school. These are heavy but will do the job over and over and over.
Heavy comparied to what? The newer ones aren't that heavy.

In reply to:
What you have to do weight up the advantages of all the above units remember that the larger the cam angle the more easily the unit will pop.
There are many factors that determine the ability of a cam to hold, cam angle is only one. Again too many variables to make such a blanket statement.

There is a large variance is cam designs because there are a lot of well educated/ informed people that have different opinions on what the best/ safest balance of features are. If you want discuss it on a technical level, you need to really expand the discussion. I'd suggest a search, because there has been a lot of such discussion on this site.


tradklime


May 18, 2005, 11:41 AM
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In reply to:
range (ie cam angle) and holding power counter act each-other

Holding power is a funny thing because how do you quantify it. Various design features of various cams work better in some situations and worse in others. There is no perfect design, and it is not a simple to say the range and "holding power" contradict.

You can state that a smaller cam angle results in more outward force and a smaller range.


rokshoxbkr19


May 18, 2005, 11:49 AM
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"Cheap cams are cheap for a reason" , yeah but not because of poor quality. Rock Empire cams are inexpensive but should not be classified as cheap. Have you even seen the new pulsars, I venture to say most of you have not nor have most of you tried these cams. They are great product and happen to be inexpensive because they are manufactured in the Czech Republic. I trust my life repeatedly to these cams day after day on very head routes all over the world. Preference is just that preference, but please do not inmply that these cams are poorly made, because they are not. The new pulsar cams are amazing in fact.


robreglinski


May 18, 2005, 12:06 PM
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ok it mite just be my UK lingo

holding power would be how much said unit can take before failing by not breaking itself or the rock

if all the units are tested in the same enviroment with the same placement then they only two factors affecting the holding power are the cam angle and the materail used to make the lobes. as you increase the cam angle the point were the lobe touches the rock moves closer to the perpendicular to the center of the spiral. since friction is the median holding the unit in the crack as you incerace this cam angle to move cover to the coffecant of firction between the rock and the metal used. once you cross that angle the unit fails.

you can cross that angle by tapering the crack becasue the tangent to the lobe is now at a steeper angle.

thus the cam angle limits the angle of flare that a unit can safley be placed in. this danger in increased when the rock is wet or loose.
it is also affect by rock type.

if you want to be uber picky then yes i cant tell you becasue it will depend on every diffrent placment right down to the crystals. however thats where your skill come in.

if you want to cover every varible knowen then you would never be able to make an educated choice as you model would be far too complex.

this is why we are crap at perdicting the weather.

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