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sheldonjr


Mar 8, 2004, 5:06 PM
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Ballnuts?
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Hey all. Tried this thread in Gear Heads and got ZERO replies. The shortest thread ever! Woo! However, zero replies is not what I was going for... So I'll try again.

I'm working on a prototype, and I want your opinions. What do you think of ballnuts/tech nuts/etc.? They're super strong and super small, why aren't they more popular? What's good? What sucks? Anything you have to say about them. Thanks!


Partner holdplease2


Mar 8, 2004, 5:58 PM
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I like ballnutz for their strength, range, and lightness, as well as surface contact with the rock. The price seems reasonable as well, less than a cam, more than a nut.

One interesting feature of the larger ballnuts is that the outside surface of the "ball" part is coated in copper. When you fall on it, apparently this copper helps the "ball" part to stick in place and give the nut part something to wedge against. I like this.

Many find the ballnutz hard to clean once weighted. Also, the wires on the ball tweak really easilly when cleaning. My thumb dosn't fit in the "thumb hole" on the smaller sizes, not that it matters that much.

If you search on "ballnutz" you will find several discussions, which will give you insight into the decision making process.

Never tried tech nuts or sliding nuts, never saw them in the store.

I think these products are specialty and are not required in many situations. Most climbers can simply do without them, and many do not realize the benefits they offer to paralell sided cracks. Additionally, many climbers may not fully realize the shortfalls of thin cams, so they do not look for products which improve on them.

Hope this helps.

-Kate.


dirtineye


Mar 8, 2004, 5:59 PM
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THis has been coverd over and over. I've answered sveral ballnut threads in great detail myself, and so have others.

Use the saerch engine.

s to why they are not more popular, well, they are specialized, and unless yo uget on a LOT of climbs where you need tiny gear, they don't do you much good.


Partner coylec


Mar 8, 2004, 6:27 PM
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I know what they are, only from discussion and reference in 'Climbing Anchors'.

I'd like to play with them, but i've never seen them in person.

david.yount's quality review covers pretty much everything I've ever heard about them and more.

wish you luck in your work ... i look forward to having another alternative for small protection!

coylec


dirtineye


Mar 9, 2004, 1:33 PM
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http://www.rockclimbing.com/forums/search.php?mode=results


malabarista


Mar 9, 2004, 2:13 PM
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Ballnutz are great for clean aid climbing. But they can be hard to clean after being weighted, as mentioned above. Not so useful for trad, unless they could be used to protect something that would otherwise be severely run-out. Never tried tech nuts.


the_pirate


Mar 9, 2004, 2:32 PM
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The first Ballnutz thread was informative.

The second was entertaining.

The third was mildly amusing.

The fourth was getting annoying.

The fifth was kinda pointless........



So which shoes are best to wear while placing Ballnutz?


dirtineye


Mar 9, 2004, 4:55 PM
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In reply to:
The first Ballnutz thread was informative.

The second was entertaining.

The third was mildly amusing.

The fourth was getting annoying.

The fifth was kinda pointless........



So which shoes are best to wear while placing Ballnutz?

Fugging brilliant!

And the answer is.. megas!

As for ballnutz not being useful for trad, I've done several climbs where if you didn't have them, you'd be in a world of hurt. a lot of climbers in the south swear by em.


cfnubbler


Mar 11, 2004, 5:39 AM
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Admit it- you guys all just like saying "ball-nutz".

-Nubbler


Partner coylec


Mar 11, 2004, 9:26 AM
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In reply to:
Admit it- you guys all just like saying "ball-nutz".

-Nubbler

yes, actually.

lowe-balls is also fun to say, as well as the mental imagery of sliding nuts.

OFF-TOPIC: I love the fact that the language of gear is so heavily sexualized. How do you place a nut? Stick it in and give it a couple of good yanks. I'm going to go fondle some gear now. yummy gear.


sheldonjr


Mar 11, 2004, 10:14 AM
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Okay okay... I forgot to search first. :oops: Thanks for your responses anyway. I needed that reminder that research should always come first.


mattdavidsen


Oct 12, 2004, 9:35 PM
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Okay all that info was great. Has anybody ever used them in a flaring crack, especially in sandstone?


flamer


Oct 13, 2004, 8:33 AM
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In reply to:
Okay all that info was great. Has anybody ever used them in a flaring crack, especially in sandstone?

Yes.

Ballnutz are not that great.

I've had more than one pop while using them for direct aid.

I've also had them pop out from rope wiggle....think of cams walking.

The single ball allows for rotation that allows them to move out of postion and then fall out.

That being said they will work in places nothing else will.

I carry them for aid only.

josh


scrubber


Oct 19, 2004, 5:26 PM
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As has been said, their usefullness is extremely limited. However they work amazingly well where nothing else will. I only have a few of them but they are toted along every now and then when there's rumors of super-thin cruxes on a route.

My biggest complaints:
1. The stems get mangled really quickly when aiding.
2. The trigger wire pulls out of the trigger bar way too easily. I've had this happen on two of my three units which necessitated finding a minute drill bit to ream out the hole, then coaxing and pleading the wire back in, then squashing and crazy gluing the hell out of it to ensure it never happens again. The wire needs to go through the trigger bar and then be folded over and swaged or something...

Kris


iamthewallress


Oct 19, 2004, 5:33 PM
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Why are ballnutz supposedly better than sliders?

In my limited experience with both, I dislike both, but don't understand the difference really.


texplorer


Oct 19, 2004, 5:36 PM
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I agree with their usefulness. Sometimes they are all you can get.


crankmas


Oct 22, 2004, 12:25 PM
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I always preferred he Rock-n-Rollers but they are no longer made to the best of my knowledge, I think they were better for trad than Lowe Balls which I see as being more aid oriented.


sspssp


Oct 22, 2004, 12:46 PM
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I saw somebody who was selling a homemade version of the tech nuts. I thought it looked like a good idea and it was lighter than the sliders. I shyed away from buying any because of the home-made not rated aspect. However, I was hoping that they would become mainstream. So that there would be rated versions on the market and more feedback about there usefulness.


danbensen


Oct 22, 2004, 1:14 PM
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In reply to:
http://www.rockclimbing.com/forums/search.php?mode=results

I think it would be fair to say that if someone posts a thread, they have probably tried a search in advance and are either unsuccessful in that regard, the search function isn't working for them, or they just haven't found what they wanted. telling someone to do a search is the most overdone cop-out there is, and I for one wish people would refrain from doing so because the only effect is that youre pissing people off


charlieclimber


Oct 22, 2004, 1:43 PM
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In my experience Lowe-Balls are about the only things that works well in superthin cracks, and they work very well indeed if placed with skill and care. Previous attempts such as "Sliders" and "Rock-and-Rollers" worked well, too, but they have serious issues like Lowe-Balls: All these devices tweak easily and can be difficult to placed one-handed, making them more appropriate for clean aid. Nevertheless, like RP's and cams, they open up alot of free terrain to good pro that was formerly unprotectable. In the past people bolted offwidth climbs because we didn't have gear to protect that size; I hope someone someday figures out a reliable and easy way to protect the other end of the spectrum. As it now stands, Lowe-Balls are obligatory for super thin cracks unless you want a bolt.

-Charlie


billcoe_


Oct 22, 2004, 2:09 PM
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I will try to answer the question: What I dislike about both sliders and ballnuts is that they seem more difficult to place than a regular nut. I like to just grab and slot, and both of those seem (I own both but don't use them often) more like grab and fiddle, then fiddle some more.

The reason (I think) sliders aren't on the market, besides being expensive, is that they were real easy to damage because the sliding effect was hindered signifigantly if the soft metal (brass) was not babied. The sliding was in a channel that caused the sliding and had sharp (and soft) easy to damage, edges.

To me, I think ball nuts have an advantage over sliders in that the smaller bearing surface on 1 side seems to fit better in most placements, and as you climb past it, the BN swivels upwards (usually) instead of torquing out. That is especially true if you're like me and don't want to sling most pieces.

I do not like that the ball will sort of slop around, almost to the point of being off of the sliding plane (sliders stayed in that channel until you f*ed it up anyway:-)

I also don't like the extra weight of the ballnuts. RPs seem so light, stack 8 on a carabiner and are easy to grab when needed.

The upside is that when aid climbing, they seem to work well when others do not.

I never took my ballnuts free climbing, when I first got them I would haul them out but never seemed to use them, - but recently I got to climb with Joseph H. It really opened my eyes to the possibilities of placing them for free climbing. I think about the times I hung on cramping forarms (my usual out of shape condition) fiddling with small nuts in the parallel sided crack like the crux of "free for some", a local 5.11, while my ballnuts slept in my basement: blissfully unaware of my stuggles and the fact that they were made for that placement I was slowly burning and pumping off of trying to be sticking regular nuts in. DOHHH.


I just realized you posted back in March and the thread got revived! How's the prototypes coming along?


sspssp


Oct 22, 2004, 2:52 PM
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I also don't like the extra weight of the ballnuts. RPs seem so light, stack 8 on a carabiner and are easy to grab when needed.

Well, that's like comparing cams and hexes. If you can slip in a nut, sure. A better comparison, I think, is to micro cams. The weight for the same size slider and cam is about the same.

As an additional comment, one of the climbing mags a while back had an article on micro cams and, without a lot of explanation, threw out some comment to the effect that Lowe Balls often gave a more secure placement than a similar size micro cam.


david.yount
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Oct 22, 2004, 9:17 PM
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one of the climbing mags a while back had an article on micro cams and, without a lot of explanation, threw out some comment to the effect that Lowe Balls often gave a more secure placement than a similar size micro cam.
Yep, I saw that blurb too. And I believe it from my experience. I've always prefered bull nuts to similar sized cams. The smallest cams have lobes so small they will surely deform and pull out far easier than the ball nuts.

http://web.mit.edu/.../cams/cams.body.html

This research paper talks about failure modes for cams, and it seems there is a significant risk of failure for the smallest cams. With this paper's research and conclusions understood, take a look at the design of the sliding ball nut. That beauty ain't gonna tweak and rip. The ramp is made from stainless? or something super hard and shiny cold. That's not gonna deform. The ball or wedge is from something else I believe (softer?) and faced with copper for real stickiness on the rock. That wedge ain't gonna deform much at all compared to the surface area presented to the rock from a very small cam.

david yount.


dirtineye


Oct 22, 2004, 10:50 PM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
http://www.rockclimbing.com/forums/search.php?mode=results

I think it would be fair to say that if someone posts a thread, they have probably tried a search in advance and are either unsuccessful in that regard, the search function isn't working for them, or they just haven't found what they wanted. telling someone to do a search is the most overdone cop-out there is, and I for one wish people would refrain from doing so because the only effect is that youre pissing people off

You know, you are pissing me off, because you clearly missed the fact that I gave a LINK to the thread about ballnutz, even though you quoted it, you moron. I did the search for them.

YOu also don't bother to notice how many posts are made by people who apologize for not searching or for searching badly.

So, consider yourself really toasted, roasted, burnt to a crisp, or whatever you want to call it.

And FYI, there have been a NUMBER of ballnut threads all saying pretty much the same thing.

DId I remember to say you are pissing me off?


brutusofwyde


Oct 28, 2004, 6:39 PM
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If you go up on Muir Wall, take doubles of #3 and #4 Ball Nutz.


I carry some specialized gear when free climbing.

Hybrid Aliens and Ball Nutz have virtually replaced standard black through yellow aliens on my rack. These things rock. They go in where anything else is worthless.



Brutus

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