Forums: Climbing Information: Gear Heads: Re: [rmsusa] The world's most expensive carabiner!: Edit Log


Apr 12, 2012, 4:30 AM

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Registered: Nov 5, 2007
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Re: [rmsusa] The world's most expensive carabiner!
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rmsusa wrote:
It's way more than just "it's the yachting crowd" and they're rich. Where I live, boating is a totally middle class activity and a really popular family weekend activity. Most boat owners are far from rich. West Marine is a boating store that caters to the entire spectrum. They do a very good job at their specialty. I'd compare them to REI in terms of what they sell and pricepoints.

Normal climbing hardware is less than useless in the marine environment. Inside of a week or so, a climbing carabiner will freeze up from galvanic and chemical corrosion. I took a couple of normal crabs out on my kayak in the ocean and the environment destroyed them in a week or so. Furthermore, if they're clipped to another piece of metal, they can promote galvanic corrosion of the other metal and destroy that as well.

Any kind of metal fitting for marine use has to be specially designed so as not to corrode internally AND not to promote corrosion in materials that it's attached to. They're expensive because they require special materials.

Here's a nice article about metal in the marine environment: Corrosion
I doubt that carabiner is anything special, likely just 7000 series aluminum, just like climbing gear. But okay, maybe it is special. However, West Marine is still a complete rip off. The shackles, quicklinks, and pulleys they sell are just standard grade 316 stainless steel, nothing special. Yet they charge some 400% above retail for them. I can get the EXACT same product on eBay for 1/5th the cost. West Marine sells some of the gear we use to create anchors on our sport routes. We get them for around $4 each and West Marine sells them for some $55. So catering to the middle class, I think not, more like catering to the ignorant class.

Oh, and they sell 1/4" Dyneema for $1.50 a foot! One of the local shops gets the exact same stuff (Amsteel grey) for less than 1/4rd that price. I found some on the net for $.50 a foot!

(This post was edited by USnavy on Apr 12, 2012, 4:33 AM)

Edit Log:
Post edited by USnavy () on Apr 12, 2012, 4:32 AM
Post edited by USnavy () on Apr 12, 2012, 4:33 AM

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