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james_e

forged friends, flexcams, or robots?

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i'm on a budget and i've narrowed it down to these three. i know forged friends are good, but it's kind of a pain in the ass to tie them off every time i want to make a horizontal placement. i've heard from several sources that flexcams walk a lot. haven't really heard much about robots, except that they got the editor's choice for best value in rock and ice. thanks!

-james

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i'm on a budget and i've narrowed it down to these three. i know forged friends are good, but it's kind of a pain in the ass to tie them off every time i want to make a horizontal placement. i've heard from several sources that flexcams walk a lot. haven't really heard much about robots, except that they got the editor's choice for best value in rock and ice. thanks!

-james

 

The "walk a lot" on the flex cam applies to the largest two sizes...and I don't think they walk that much. The medium and small sizes don't walk any more than other cams. thumbs_up.gif I've been told that the larger sizes in the latest flex cams are wider, eliminating the walking problem. Don't know that for sure though.

 

The flex cam is a MUCH better cam than the Robot. thumbs_up.gif I have used both, and the robot is not a bad cam, but the flex cams are sooo much better. cool.gif

 

Keep in mind that the forged friends while certainly time tested design, do NOT have a flexible stem. shocked.gif The stem is RIGID, which limits or at least effects how and where they can be placed. You have to alter the cam slightly to use in horizontal cracks (adding a lsing or cord through the tie off holes in the stem. Not a huge deal, but one thing you'll have to add/learn/get used to.

 

Review of the Forged Friends.

 

Good luck.... wave.gif

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Robots are good in deep fingers cracks because you only have one finger on the trigger. Hands, I prefer single stems 'cause they probably walk less. FFs are great at large hands and up--I sold my #3 and up Camalots and just use the FFs. Today's tip: if you tie it off and tuck the cord under a rubber band, you don't have to tie it off every time you place it wave.gif

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what's wrong with the small forged friends? i've heard that the stem is wide enough compared to the head that it can actually get jammed in the crack, but does that actually happen that often?

-james

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FYI the trango, kong, robot cams come from the same wherehouse..

 

They are manufactured at the same factory....in the Czech Republic called Hudy. They are different cams. Just pick up a Robot and a Fleax cam, you'll see huge differences.

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I personally would go with the forged friends. The #1 size sucks because of the stem to lobe ratio, but still works ok, but the others are really good. They make a good addition to a rack when you finally get around to getting camalots or whatever, because they are super light. I've climbed many routes with forged friends with no problems.

Get a few tricams for the horizontal placements.

 

Another option you may consider would be this:

DMM 3CU's full set (4Cu's suck), sizes 0.5 through 1.75, inexpensive. These are good cams, in my opinion.

Forged Friends #2, 2.5, 3, 3.5 and 4.

This way you have TCU's, 6 flexable, light cams and light larger sizes.

 

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Rodchester may be to old to have used rigid freinds. He may be a techno geek. Don't believe everything you read. I agree with Bill Simpkins. I have climbed probably a couple hundred cracks with rigid friends and had zero problems. My rigid friends are probably 15 years old and still in great shape, but I have reslung them with webbing a couple times. Don't bash something until you have experience with it. I garuntee that you will be plenty happy with foreged friends. And unless you are climbing in the East, vertical placement are the norm in the Northwest. In addition, for the occasional horizontal placement the tie off actually works very good. It actually may be better then a cable stem since cord or webbing is going over the crack edge, but on a cable stem unit the cable will get bent all to shit after a fall, except for maybe aliens. But I can tell you from experience that trango and metolious cables get totally tweaked in a horizontal placement after a fall.

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Sorry, I ment the Rodchester may be too young to remember all of the badass hard free routes put up in the Valley and the Gunks with rigid friends.

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I've had a rack and a half of forged friends for years because they're super cheap and super light. It's no additional hassle while you're climbing to place them in horizontals, so long as you've slung one of the top holes with cord and not just the bottom one. The cord loads over the edge like it's a tricam - no problems. They've been in use all over the world for years and years.

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Rodchester ... Don't bash something until you have experience with it.

 

...

 

But I can tell you from experience that trango and metolious cables get totally tweaked in a horizontal placement after a fall.

 

me too young? Oh that's sweet. wink.gif I've used both. thumbs_up.gif I was merely pointing out to him the fact that a rigid stem requires that one be aware of how it is placed. I think that is something he should be aware of and consider. wazzup.gif

 

The older dual stemmed Trangos (which are VERY similar to Robots) can get tweaked as you say. The entire idea of the "flex cam" is that it resists getting bent out of shape or tweaked. This is due to the use of a single stem and the type of material from which the stem is made.

 

By the way, you say tweaked in a horizontal crack fall, are you sure that you mean that they got tweaked in a horizontal crack? That is usually where flexible dual stems excel because each stem is horizontal to the ground and thus the fall.

 

Maybe I am misunderstanding your statement, or maybe I'm just incorrect? confused.gif Usually they tend to get tweaked when they are at odd angle to the direction of fall and/or ground. This is precisely why Trango (and others) have switched from dual stem to single stem.

 

wave.gif

Edited by Rodchester

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Sorry, I ment the Rodchester may be too young to remember all of the badass hard free routes put up in the Valley and the Gunks with rigid friends.

Shapp's probably to young to remember all the bad ass routes put up with stoppers and hexes rolleyes.gif

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there is no question in my mind whatsoever. buy the flexcams. they are great cams. the biggest size gets a hard rap, so i originally bought 1-7. however, a friend had an 8 (the largest) which i used a lot, and i finally bought one of my own. if you put some thought into your placements, walking shouldnt be that big an issue.

 

i have a set of flexcams, and all the robots. i really like the robots, seriously. they are kind of like a really big 3cu with a lot of rock contact. they fit places the flexcam wont. however, they are not as flexible (in the does-everything-well sense) as the flexcams.

 

the forged friends are cute and light, but very limiting, as you have mentioned. the gunks tie-off annoys the heck out of me, too.

 

trango has a solid line.

 

best,

anthony

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Rodchester,

 

I said "cables get totally tweaked in a horizontal placement after a fall". Like if you place the cam in a horizontal crack and take a fall the cables get bent. I don't mean a 5 foot pussy fall, but a 20 foot fall. I have a couple cams you can have that are totally fucked because of this. The placements were textbook, but the cables gote bent over the crack edge; howver, the edge was not rounded, but fairly angular. THis probably lead to more tweaking than would have occured if the crack was more rounded. Anyway to cjoo1f, my first leads were with saddle wedges, some hexes, a few wired old wildcountry stopers, and some slung BD nuts, and I even had a couple of those camlock crapy hex/stoper things and a couple forest t-nuts, but I never used them.

Anyway cams are great I think we can all agree and as usually personal preferences vary widely, and climbers can argue with the best of them.

Shapp out

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shapp:

 

I guess what I'm not getting then is why they would do it in a horizontal crack, but not another crack? Am I misunderstanding you? If its a flexible mono-stem cam, say like BD or Trango, then the type of loading you mention (causing a tweak as you say) would occur whether it is in a horizontal crack or another crack...correct? I'm just trying to understand what the signifigance of the horizontal crack is in this instance.

 

Also, if you took a fall big enough to put enough force on the stem (tweaking it/bending it or whatever) what would the same force do to a Forged Freind in a horizontal crack where one would be using a tied in sling or cord?

 

Just curious.

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Sorry, I ment the Rodchester may be too young to remember all of the badass hard free routes put up in the Valley and the Gunks with rigid friends.

Shapp's probably to young to remember all the bad ass routes put up with stoppers and hexes rolleyes.gif

 

cj100f's probably too young to remember all the bad ass routes put up with a rack of pins and a hammer rolleyes.gif

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Sorry, I ment the Rodchester may be too young to remember all of the badass hard free routes put up in the Valley and the Gunks with rigid friends.

Shapp's probably to young to remember all the bad ass routes put up with stoppers and hexes rolleyes.gif

 

cj100f's probably too young to remember all the bad ass routes put up with a rack of pins and a hammer rolleyes.gif

OffWhite's too young to remember the routes put up in the pre protection era rolleyes.gif

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Rodchester, I think you are hopeless. Take your single stem cams, place a couple in a horizontal placement with the stem hanging over the edge, climb up about 10 feet and take a jump, report back to us if your cable on that piece is totally fucked. Second, take rigid friend with a gunks tie-off, place it in the same horizontal crack, climb up ten feet and jump. Report back to us that the sling absorbed the force over the edge, and the cam looks exactly like it did before you took the leap. Scratch your head and consult John Longs anchor books, post your gear for sale on cc.com and take up fishing.

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one more question: what diameter/type of cord or webbing do you use for the gunks tie-off? cantfocus.gif

-james

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I prefer Maxim Tech cord a 5.5mil (which is also the same thing as BD Gemini 2...not to be confused with the original Gemini cord, which was a diff material).

 

The relative strengths of common cordage materials will probably surprise you. Moyer did extensive testing several years ago. Here's a link to his site, look under the older tests section for a report called "Comparative Testing of High Strength Cord". Fish also has a copy of the results on his site somewhere.

 

http://www.xmission.com/~tmoyer/testing/

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