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billcoe_


Dec 2, 2007, 7:05 PM
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Re: [bootlegger] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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bootlegger wrote:
Gotta disagree with healyje on this one. A cam coming out of a placement is one thing, and is typically user error. But based on the photo, I would never expect a cam to literally break in that situation. If these cams are subject to breakage in that small a 'non-vertical' orientation, then OP needs to put some serious guidance/restrictions out in their marketing materials.

I'm waiting for the report. I have 3 of these cams, and like several here have noted, there are lots of moving parts which I think everyone knows has potential for trouble.

HealyJ noted early on in the game when these things first came out to be real careful in placing and slinging so that they do not get set sideways, I got that and have been.

I was pretty sure when they first came out, based on the picture alone, that they would be easier to fix and get stuck than other cams, and that appears true as well.

So runner them well is the point. I love that range.


ja1484


Dec 2, 2007, 7:09 PM
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Re: [bootlegger] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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bootlegger wrote:
Gotta disagree with healyje on this one. A cam coming out of a placement is one thing, and is typically user error. But based on the photo, I would never expect a cam to literally break in that situation. If these cams are subject to breakage in that small a 'non-vertical' orientation, then OP needs to put some serious guidance/restrictions out in their marketing materials.


Fair enough, but they may not be aware that there is a problem with this orientation. This may be precisely what is brought to light by this incident...we'll have to see.

On another note, anyone else think (from what can be seen in the photo) that they'd go straight to a Tricam if this pod would take one? Frankly, I don't like the twisty, torquey shear type force that would be put on ANY cam fallen on when in this pod. It depends on the internal geometry of the pod, which can't be seen in the photo, but it looks to me like it might be possible to orient a tricam to be directly in line with a straight downward pull.

Even if the orientation of the tricam weren't perfect, I'd say they're significantly less susceptible to the effects of leverage (with regards to breakage anyway) than active cams, seeing as they're basically chocks with a party-trick.


(This post was edited by ja1484 on Dec 2, 2007, 7:11 PM)


Partner cracklover


Dec 3, 2007, 6:48 AM
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Re: [ja1484] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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ja1484 wrote:
On another note, anyone else think (from what can be seen in the photo) that they'd go straight to a Tricam if this pod would take one? Frankly, I don't like the twisty, torquey shear type force that would be put on ANY cam fallen on when in this pod.

While we're being frank - frankly, I don't really want to see this important thread cluttered up with the standard opinions about how tricams are great - no, hexes are better, no, only beginners carry hexes, yadda yadda.

No offense.

GO


dingus


Dec 3, 2007, 7:02 AM
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Re: [cracklover] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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One of the reasons I still carry TCUs in favor of or to augment smaller fcu's is their ability to rotate in a placement and still hold.

I know that rotation thing is a dual-edged sword... that's why I also like to carry small fcu's as well. A nice compliment.

Cheers
DMT


wannabe


Dec 3, 2007, 8:31 AM
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Re: [dingus] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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I have heard a rumor that OP gear is made using prison labor. Does anyone have facts or information to back up this rumor?

If the rumor is true, how does OP control quality? What is the incentive for a worker in this environment to care enough about my life to do a good job of manufacturing it?

Again, I don't have facts, but would really like to know.


dingus


Dec 3, 2007, 8:38 AM
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Re: [wannabe] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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wannabe wrote:
I have heard a rumor that OP gear is made using prison labor. Does anyone have facts or information to back up this rumor?

If the rumor is true, how does OP control quality? What is the incentive for a worker in this environment to care enough about my life to do a good job of manufacturing it?

Again, I don't have facts, but would really like to know.

They do not.

They once did.

They had lots of QC.

It was a state supported prisoner work program designed to benefit business and the prison workers via job skills training.

I understand the state program went away and they (OP) always had PR problems associated with it, from generally uninformed people, like me.

I once made a similar reference has had been made in this thread. Just the thought of prison labor for climbing gear seemed, um.... bad.

The owner or president of OP responded with details of the program. That response satisified me at least that they had good QC procedures in place, that they were not gaining unfair market advantage (they paid commercial salaries and the wages earned went to inmate and victims bills, so to speak).

But it is no more and hasn't been for quite some time, as I recall.

Cheers
DMT


(This post was edited by dingus on Dec 3, 2007, 8:39 AM)


wannabe


Dec 3, 2007, 8:43 AM
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Re: [dingus] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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Thanks Dingus...that rumor didn't sit easy with me as well.


sed


Dec 3, 2007, 8:54 AM
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Re: [wannabe] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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If this gear failed based on inherent limitations in design, then change the design. I don't want to have to consider subtle alterations in angle and forces when I'm trying to move through a crux, I want to fire a piece in and move through. If link cams are dangerous in angled placements I won't use/buy them. The whole point of the link cam is to reduce the amount of crap I have to carry. If I have to carry BD cams to back up placements where a link cam won't work then what is the point?
Scott


the_climber


Dec 3, 2007, 9:08 AM
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Re: [sed] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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True to form RC.com jump on the Paranoia and Speculation bandwagon.

Why don't you all just relax for a few, and let OP do their investigation into this. The way in which they have handled issues in the past have gained props from all of you. Let them handle it in the same what.

FYI, when the link cams came out the consensus as a whole was that due to their designs there would be limitations and that they would need to be placed with a different eye than standard cams. Just like how you would place a solid stem cam you must take considerations when placing link cams.

ALL gear has limitations. Think about that next time you place ANY piece. Just like when you decide to run it out on that #0 TCU.... or on a #3 nut.... or on a forged friend in a slanting crack... or when you plug your cam straight into a crack instead of angling it down.

Not all of those good looking placements are as good as you think. I know guys who've been climbing for 35+ years who have said "I could have sworn that was going to hold" after ripping a cam. Yes this was cam failure not full on rock/placement failure, but the point is that not all our placements may be what they first appear to be. Relax, chill... OP is on it. You think they don't want the best possible outcome for the climbing community? They build this stuff you the community, they climb themselves, they know what is at stake.


moose_droppings


Dec 3, 2007, 9:11 AM
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Re: [sed] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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sed wrote:
If this gear failed based on inherent limitations in design, then change the design. I don't want to have to consider subtle alterations in angle and forces when I'm trying to move through a crux, I want to fire a piece in and move through. If link cams are dangerous in angled placements I won't use/buy them. The whole point of the link cam is to reduce the amount of crap I have to carry. If I have to carry BD cams to back up placements where a link cam won't work then what is the point?
Scott

Sorry, but thats part of the game. If you want to avoid fiddling with pieces try sport. Even with nuts you still have to take into account the direction of fall. A big part of trad is knowing what piece to use, and its limitations.


altelis


Dec 3, 2007, 9:12 AM
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Re: [sed] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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sed wrote:
If this gear failed based on inherent limitations in design, then change the design. I don't want to have to consider subtle alterations in angle and forces when I'm trying to move through a crux, I want to fire a piece in and move through. If link cams are dangerous in angled placements I won't use/buy them. The whole point of the link cam is to reduce the amount of crap I have to carry. If I have to carry BD cams to back up placements where a link cam won't work then what is the point?
Scott

sorry, i WHOLE HEARTEDLY disagree. if you have a clip and go mentality then go sport climbing-----hell, go bouldering. don't get me wrong; i love to sport climb and boulder as well. but trad climbing isn't the same

trad climbing is a thinking man's game. not just about the placement----about everything. which of many ways to equalize this PARTICULAR anchor; how wandery is this pitch; how to best protect this for my second; does this nut fit best straight down or on its side; will we be faster over all if i stop here and sling this tree for an anchor rather than climbing 30 more feet and set a semi-hanging gear anchor; etc.

and i beg to differ that the purpose of the link cam reduces the amount of crap you have to carry. they might have the range of two cams but once placed they have the range of 0 cams on your rack. you essentially place two pieces with every placement. their benefit is for flares, awkward placements that are semi-inbetween sizes or as one "oh shit i'm pumped and don't have time finding the right size (of course this is placement dependent as we now see)". but if the guide book says singles to 3 inches you can't now take 1/2 as many cams. you need the same number of POINTS of protection.

i dunno--i'm used to alpine climbing and bring that mentality to my single and multipitch trad game. a way paired down rack that forces me to be creative if i don't want it way run out. think more, be more creative and you can carry WAY less gear.


sed


Dec 3, 2007, 9:25 AM
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Re: [altelis] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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I'm no noob. i've been climbing trad 10+ years, mostly now it's FA's. I don't have a clip and go mentality, rarely sport climb at all. What I do have is a desire to live, and it's the job of gear maker's to give me confidence. IF link cams don't work safely in angled placements I won't buy them. The cams I have already get the job done for me. It's a shame because I was thinking of buying one for myself for christmas mainly cause I like shiny new metal.
Scott


shoo


Dec 3, 2007, 9:48 AM
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Re: [sed] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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sed wrote:
IF link cams don't work safely in angled placements I won't buy them. The cams I have already get the job done for me.

That's where your post is getting people riled up. A "safely angled placement" is different in different devices, which you clearly know. The link cams essentially sacrifice a few types of placements for an increased expansion range. That doesn't make it an inherently worse product than anything else on your rack, it just makes it a different one.

If your racking preference and strategy means that you'd rather just stick with your current setup, by all means do so. I happen to follow the same thought, at least until the full limitations of link cams are well known. All devices have "inherent limitations," and it is up to the climber to sort out which limitations and benefits he/she will choose.

That being said, is anyone doing any testing to see how the link cams stand up in placements with large amounts of torque?


nivlac


Dec 3, 2007, 10:51 AM
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Re: [shoo] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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shoo wrote:

That's where your post is getting people riled up. A "safely angled placement" is different in different devices, which you clearly know. The link cams essentially sacrifice a few types of placements for an increased expansion range. That doesn't make it an inherently worse product than anything else on your rack, it just makes it a different one.

If your racking preference and strategy means that you'd rather just stick with your current setup, by all means do so. I happen to follow the same thought, at least until the full limitations of link cams are well known. All devices have "inherent limitations," and it is up to the climber to sort out which limitations and benefits he/she will choose.

That being said, is anyone doing any testing to see how the link cams stand up in placements with large amounts of torque?

I think sed sounds clearer here. There are several posts where it seems some people make it sound like this was an obvious design limitation.

Clearly not. The OP had a bad fall (rather unexpected to him), and many other people here are shocked (me included) that the OP cam failed in the manner it did. I think that's a reasonable reaction. When I place a nut or other device and it pulls, that's most likely operator error. I don't expect the nut to twist in half and break off though.

the_climber mentioned paranoia and speculation. You bet your ass I'm paranoid when it comes to these devices. I only have one life and when I can't reasonably figure out the risk parameters because of unclear design-limitations in the cam, that's what gets me riled up.

I'm more and more interested in the test results and analysis from OP.


billcoe_


Dec 3, 2007, 10:54 AM
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Re: [sed] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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sed wrote:
I'm no noob. i've been climbing trad 10+ years, mostly now it's FA's. I don't have a clip and go mentality, rarely sport climb at all. What I do have is a desire to live, and it's the job of gear maker's to give me confidence. IF link cams don't work safely in angled placements I won't buy them. The cams I have already get the job done for me. It's a shame because I was thinking of buying one for myself for christmas mainly cause I like shiny new metal.
Scott

Well I hate to see what you'd say about all the Alien failures. I want to commend Omega Pacific for jumping right on this and checking it out.

THANK YOU!

Can we wait for the report now?


sed


Dec 3, 2007, 11:06 AM
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Re: [billcoe_] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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i have one alien and use other's. i won't buy any more. i avoid using it or back it up if i do. i definitely won't use it in a groundfall scenario. to be honest - nuts are my favorite piece of pro.
S


medicus


Dec 3, 2007, 11:14 AM
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Waiting for the OP report... [In reply to]
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So about that report that OP is going to be releasing... yeah, anything useful has been lost in a wasteland of nothingness. Let's all wait on for OP to release the report.


andypro


Dec 3, 2007, 4:41 PM
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Re: [sed] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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sed wrote:
i have one alien and use other's. i won't buy any more. i avoid using it or back it up if i do. i definitely won't use it in a groundfall scenario. to be honest - nuts are my favorite piece of pro.
S


Then WHY do you use it at all? Why place it if you're just going to place another piece that you trust to back it up? Why not just place the piece you trust, and leave the Alien on the ground? Or at home? Obviously the Alien isn't the only piece that will work, because you're backing it up with something that ISN'T an Alien. It just doesn't make any sense.

--Andy P


curt


Dec 3, 2007, 5:56 PM
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Re: [trenchdigger] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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trenchdigger wrote:
..My engineering background <non-scientifically based speculation follows> tells me that although these link cams are just as strong as others when loaded in a lab setting (a "perfect" crack, and loaded inline with the placement) they may not be as durable when it comes to off-axis, torqueing loads such as this case. I own the same red link cam, and to be quite honest, I'm not sure I would have had so mouch faith in it in that placement...

As long as we're guessing, that would be my guess too. There really isn't much material around those rivets and a force applied in a different direction than anticipated could perhaps lead to that type of failure.

Curt


paganmonkeyboy


Dec 3, 2007, 6:10 PM
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Re: [dirtme] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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Dirtme -

I am very, very glad you were not seriously hurt.

-Tom


sed


Dec 3, 2007, 6:30 PM
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Re: [andypro] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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good point, i should probably retire it to paperweight status like it deserves. because of it's profile it does fit in unique places and serves a purpose occasionally between other pieces or when marginal gear is the best I can get.
S


Partner rgold


Dec 3, 2007, 6:49 PM
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Re: [sed] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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A little appreciated fact is that the internal forces generated in cams placed in downward-flaring placements can be arbitrarily high. See, for example, Vaino Kodas's explanation. Among other things, he says, "...as the angle of the flare approaches the spiral angle the forces grow very large (theoretically infinite)..."

What this means in practical terms is that cams in flaring placements are susceptible to forces that will break either the placement or the cam (or both). I'd guess that usually the placement breaks in some way and the cam is extracted by the fall, but breakage is another possible failure mode. This is a consequence of the camming geometry and is not a design failure. Ascribing it to pilot error would assume, first, that the pilot knew this could be a problem (most climbers I mention it to seem unaware of the issue), and second, that it is possible, under the circumstances of placement, to detect the flare, which after all could be quite local in nature. The J-tree placement looks like a piton scar, which are typically flared.

Link cams are complicated and appear to have weak points compared to ordinary cams. In addition to weird torquing situations, flared placements should also be treated with suspicion. Dirtme said, "I could have put another piece in as a backup, so the deck was preventable." I think the need for redundance on the first piece between climber and ground is increased when the placement may be compromised, and this sounds like an occasion for the extra level of prudence.

The hope that cams would eliminate the thinking required for nuts has turned out to be naive. (I am not referring to any particular person here.) Cam placements require careful thought and inspection too, and just firing in a unit means accepting an uncertain outcome, something, like many other things in climbing, that you can get away with for years and years, but which might just bite you in the ass one day---and the biting mouth does not care how experienced the bitten ass is or was.

This is not to say that the cam in question did not have some sort of structural defect. Even if it turns out to have one, we still have to live with the uncertainty of even "bombproof" protection always holding. One part of the defense is a cautious attitude towards cams in downward flares, especially complicated cams like the Link Cam.


shockabuku


Dec 3, 2007, 8:27 PM
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Re: [michaellane] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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michaellane wrote:
We have tested the assembled links for what we call "over-edge" strength. That is, we set up a perpendicular force on one end of a set of outstretched links with the opposite end anchored, stressed over an obstacle, or edge at the mid-points to test the ultimate strength of the hinge points.

This is interesting, and not a negative criticism of Omega Pacific, but if in this placement the cam was near to full retraction the amount of torque on the extended arm could have been significantly larger than in the OP tests. In this situation the axle end could be considered fixed, with the force applied at the end of the extended lobe and instead of it being "stressed over an obstacle, or edge at the mid-points" it would have been stressed over an obstacle at the point of contact which would have been close to the axle. This would create a significantly longer lever arm which, it would seem, could then be broken with a smaller applied force than in the tests. Once the lobe broke, the cam probably would have rotated very suddenly which may have caused it to dislodge, particularly if this was a flaring placement.


blondgecko
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Dec 3, 2007, 10:07 PM
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Re: [shockabuku] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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shockabuku wrote:
michaellane wrote:
We have tested the assembled links for what we call "over-edge" strength. That is, we set up a perpendicular force on one end of a set of outstretched links with the opposite end anchored, stressed over an obstacle, or edge at the mid-points to test the ultimate strength of the hinge points.

This is interesting, and not a negative criticism of Omega Pacific, but if in this placement the cam was near to full retraction the amount of torque on the extended arm could have been significantly larger than in the OP tests. In this situation the axle end could be considered fixed, with the force applied at the end of the extended lobe and instead of it being "stressed over an obstacle, or edge at the mid-points" it would have been stressed over an obstacle at the point of contact which would have been close to the axle. This would create a significantly longer lever arm which, it would seem, could then be broken with a smaller applied force than in the tests. Once the lobe broke, the cam probably would have rotated very suddenly which may have caused it to dislodge, particularly if this was a flaring placement.

I hope this diagram is clear, but is this the sort of effect you're talking about?


Attachments: cam torque.JPG (13.4 KB)


shockabuku


Dec 4, 2007, 6:01 AM
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Re: [blondgecko] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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blondgecko wrote:
shockabuku wrote:
michaellane wrote:
We have tested the assembled links for what we call "over-edge" strength. That is, we set up a perpendicular force on one end of a set of outstretched links with the opposite end anchored, stressed over an obstacle, or edge at the mid-points to test the ultimate strength of the hinge points.

This is interesting, and not a negative criticism of Omega Pacific, but if in this placement the cam was near to full retraction the amount of torque on the extended arm could have been significantly larger than in the OP tests. In this situation the axle end could be considered fixed, with the force applied at the end of the extended lobe and instead of it being "stressed over an obstacle, or edge at the mid-points" it would have been stressed over an obstacle at the point of contact which would have been close to the axle. This would create a significantly longer lever arm which, it would seem, could then be broken with a smaller applied force than in the tests. Once the lobe broke, the cam probably would have rotated very suddenly which may have caused it to dislodge, particularly if this was a flaring placement.

I hope this diagram is clear, but is this the sort of effect you're talking about?

Basically, yes. I envisioned the protrusion labeled in your diagram as the edge of the pod itself with contact right at the tip of the extended lobe. Of course it's all conjecture and the contact force could be applied anywhere along the extended lobe.

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