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Reviews by taino (25)

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Expedition Rock 45 plus 10 (Manufacturer link) Average Rating = 2.00/5 Average Rating : 2.00/5

In: Gear: Hiking and Camping: Backpacks: Backpacking Packs

On the right track, but... 2 out of 5 stars

Review by: taino, 2007-03-07

This pack has hints of greatness. It's reasonably light, very comfortable, easy to adjust, and it can hold a lot of gear. For rock cragging and overnighters, it's great. It also shines when used in the backcountry, with ski/snowshoe loops on the side and quick-releasing compression straps. Why, then, am I only giving this two stars?

The pack has buckles that attach directly to the material of the pack, with which to carry ice axes. On mine, one of them popped out after only approximately 10 days of useage - wholly unacceptable. In addition, there is nowhere to externally attach your crampons; instead, you can stuff them up under the pack lid or under the compression straps and risk the bag being punctured. I brought it up with my local shop, and found out that they'd had several Vaude packs returned over the past couple of years for the same reason - that buckle, fastened in the material, popping out. They sent it back to the company, and I got a different pack.

In short, the pack is good for nearly everything for which it's advertised. I would strongly advise, however, getting something else for ice/alpine pursuits.

Defy Climbing Shoe - Mens (Manufacturer link) popular Average Rating = 3.94/5 Average Rating : 3.94/5

In: Gear: Shoes: Climbing Shoes: Velcro

Review 5 out of 5 stars

Review by: taino, 2005-02-24

The two most important things for a climbing shoe to have are: good fit, and good rubber.
The Defy has both.I used to swear by 5.10 C4 Stealth rubber; it was the best rubber I'd ever used on my shoes. Then I tried the TRAXX rubber and - frankly - I don't like to use the Stealth any more unless I'm resoling my TRAXX. The Evolv rubber is easily as sticky as the C4, and seems to edge better. I was warned that the Evolv shoe might wear out faster, but I've yet to notice any appreciable wear; someone with less-than-average footwork skills might find that different, however, because the TRAXX is indeed softer than the C4.Now, about the fit...I have two different-sized feet, and it was always a nightmare to find climbing shoes that both my feet could tolerate. Enter Evolv, with their policy of setting different sizes at need: this allowed me to fit both my feet perfectly, with no dead space in the heel of one foot and cramped toes on the other. Their velcro wraps further around the foot, it seems, than the Ascents I've been using and, thanks to the way the tongue sits, there's no bunching or pinching. The shoes were remarkably comfortable right out of the box, and are proving to be just as comfortable now. They haven't stretched beyond forming to my feet - not even a little; that's something that not even my Ascents (synthetic, lined shoe) could achieve.In summary, the Defy shoes are - so far - the best shoes I've used. They're easily the most comfortable for all-around use, and the rubber is first rate. I recommend them without reservation.

Flyer II 10.2 mm x 60 m (Manufacturer link) Average Rating = 4.17/5 Average Rating : 4.17/5

In: Gear: Essential Equipment: Climbing Ropes: Dynamic Single Ropes

Review 4 out of 5 stars

Review by: taino, 2004-12-08

I needed an inexpensive rope for leading; the Beal Flyer II fit the budget.

I've used it perhaps three times (bought in November, 2004), and have been very impressed with it so far. I haven't taken any falls on it, but it was fairly supple right out of the bag with very little kinking. It was slightly stiff at first, but a full-length rappel took care of that. The rope handles extremely well; almost as good as my Mammut. The sheath is tightly-woven, and looks to be able to stand up to a good amount of abuse. The very obvious middle mark is wonderful; while not a bi-pattern, the large mark makes finding the middle a breeze.

I'll re-review the rope after I've used it more.

Double Happiness (Manufacturer link) Average Rating = 5.00/5 Average Rating : 5.00/5

In: Gear: Archive

Review 5 out of 5 stars

Review by: taino, 2004-06-09

Having moved into the realm of leading and following on doubles, I can't imagine going back to singles without quite a struggle. These Maxim ropes are excellent - thick enough to hold a fall even for someone my size (200lbs), yet thin and light enough to allow all the benefits of using doubles.

Attache Screw-Lock Carabiner popular Average Rating = 4.33/5 Average Rating : 4.33/5

In: Gear: Essential Equipment: Carabiners: Locking Carabiners

Review 3 out of 5 stars

Review by: taino, 2004-05-26

Good biner; a bit small (prefer the Omega Jake for belaying), but good for using in a Petzl device (Ascender, tibloc, etc). I like the red-stripe indicator showing if the screw-gate is closed. The smooth nose is also nice, although Petzl didn't exactly make it easy to use - the nose is pointed so far down that it still catches often.

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