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healyje


Dec 19, 2007, 8:42 AM
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Re: [wanderlustmd] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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wanderlustmd wrote:
If the design is that touchy, so be it, but I think the degree to which is it sensitive to placement is not as readiliy obvious as the fact that it is sensitive to placement. Make sense?

It does. I would say the inability [for anyone] to really make that judgment call of degrees should be a caveat to all to avoid such enclosed placements, particularly where the stem can not be statically aligned with the fall force vector at the time of placement. I strongly disagree with OP if they are saying it would be alright if only the stem had been free to rotate - you might get away with it, but it's a inherently a bad idea to allow the stem to rotate the head under any circumstance as far as I'm concerned.

wanderlustmd wrote:
Given the fall, I would have also expected this cam to hold, or at least to pull under torque, but not to break. Rightly or wrongly, I guess.

We part company here, in my view it performed as well as could be expected it would under such circumstances. And I don't mean to be derogatory at all, but I technically] still consider this a classic case of pilot error.

wanderlustmd wrote:
It would be interesting to see if another link cam would hold this fall.

I think the analysis Michael is presenting says the cam was fine...


wanderlustmd


Dec 19, 2007, 8:51 AM
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Re: [healyje] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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healyje wrote:
It does. I would say the inability [for anyone] to really make that judgment call of degrees should be a caveat to all to avoid such enclosed placements, particularly where the stem can not be statically aligned with the fall force vector at the time of placement. I strongly disagree with OP if they are saying it would be alright if only the stem had been free to rotate - you might get away with it, but it's a inherently a bad idea to allow the stem to rotate the head under any circumstance as far as I'm concerned.

Agreed.

healyje wrote:
We part company here, in my view it performed as well as could be expected it would under such circumstances. And I don't mean to be derogatory at all, but I technically] still consider this a classic case of pilot error.

wanderlustmd wrote:
It would be interesting to see if another link cam would hold this fall.

I think the analysis Michael is presenting says the cam was fine...

FWIW, Michael posted his report while I was writing my post. After reading the specfics about the placement (in a flare, etc.) and what happened, in theory, I agree with you in that it probably wasn't a trustworthy piece in the first place. Hard to really tell withough being there, though.

Cheers,
Matt


sed


Dec 19, 2007, 8:52 AM
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Re: [michaellane] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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I commend your quick investigation and response, it gives me confidence in your products as a whole. I also like the idea of the link cam. I have only placed them a couple times but the design really appealed to me, although the complexity did make me wonder about it's durability. Unfortunately we may be witnessing here the effects of a limitation that, despite what some may believe is probably not inherently obvious, unless you are expecting primarily engineers to buy this product, which probably would not meet your bottom line. I am in my 12th year of climbing, and while I still have a lot to learn I feel that if I bought a link cam it would spend more time on my harness than in the rock because I would only place in ideal, plumb line placements. I hope the basic design idea stays around although maybe altered to make the actual product limitations more predictable.
Sincerely, Scott


michaellane


Dec 19, 2007, 8:53 AM
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Re: [healyje] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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In reply to:
healyje: I strongly disagree with OP if they are saying it would be alright if only the stem had been free to rotate - you might get away with it, but it's a inherently a bad idea to allow the stem to rotate the head under any circumstance as far as I'm concerned.

I agree, Joe ... it's not a good practice to place cams poorly and hope they align properly during the fall. What I tried to say was that had this cam been placed at that same angle in a feature which permitted greater rotation of the cam head as the unit came under load, it may have "self-corrected" without issue.

But absolutely not ... we don't suggest that placing cams with the assumption or expectation that they'll rotate into proper placement is acceptable. It is always best to place cams deliberately and carefully so that they are properly oriented in direction of load if you fall. Nearly all the time, that means the stem points to the ground and the head is perpendicular to the stem. If that's not always possible, then you have to assess how far "off" that ideal is acceptable.

--ML


moose_droppings


Dec 19, 2007, 9:08 AM
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Re: [michaellane] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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Thanks Michael for your report. It explains quite clearly the problem with the placement as pointed out earlier in this thread.

In reply to:
1) Always place cams so that the head of the cam is perpendicular to the stem during a fall. Itís not always enough to know that youíve got a flexible stem that will orient in the direction of a fall. That stem is placing a lot of force on the head of the unit and that force can compromise your placement or damage the equipment. Thatís good advice no matter what kind of cam youíre using.
2) Be sure to place cams so that, if they do shift during loading, they will not come into contact with edges, nubbins or other features that can put side-loads on the cam lobes. This is a good idea for all cams, too, but perhaps most relevant when placing Link Cams due to the fact that so much more leverage can be applied to the lobe assemblies when theyíre unfolded than with other cam designs.

The fact that this needs to be reiterated to 'experienced climbers' is scary to say the least. When less than optimal placements are made, one should expect less than optimal results when fall turns to catch.


tomcat


Dec 19, 2007, 9:13 AM
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Re: [michaellane] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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Who places cams poorly and hopes they align with the fall? No one. We place cams as best we can and expect them to withstand normal fall forces.

Good doublespeak though......

Mr. Wanderlustmd,can you walk me through your idea that the placement wasn't good to begin with,but maintained enough traction to blow the cam apart?


(This post was edited by tomcat on Dec 19, 2007, 9:21 AM)


healyje


Dec 19, 2007, 9:41 AM
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Re: [tomcat] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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tomcat wrote:
So,how many failed Aliens vs. # in use? How many failed Link Cams vs.# in use?

As I've said all along, I suspect we'll be seeing more Link Cams come apart, but I also suspect they will also be pilot error due to a poor decision to use one in an inappropriate placement or manner. The comparison with CCH's problems with Aliens is, however, and entirely different affair. People are just learning how and when to use Link Cams and that's a vastly different thing then heads popping off Aliens. Climbers making mistakes using Link Cams is one thing; CCH making post-recall mistakes is another deal altogether and in no way comparable at all.

tomcat wrote:
Link Cams don't appear to place anywhere C4's or other leading cams do.In theory they are more versatile,but that theory comes apart pretty quickly if they fail in the type of application cited here.WTF good are they if they have to be pointed down to work?

Look, my whole point is these aren't a regular cam and no one should expect them to replace their regular rack of cams. They can augment a rack, but it's exactly the idea that these are somehow either a 'regular' or 'super' device that's going to be getting folks into trouble with them.

And, yes, they are versatile - not in some 'universal' way you seem to be implying - but within the context of their expanded range in clean placements I would still call them 'versatile'.


wanderlustmd


Dec 19, 2007, 9:43 AM
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Re: [tomcat] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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I didn't say that; I said that I would have initially expected the placement to hold given my knowledge of the piece. I didn't reread the whole thread since I last posted (several weeks ago) and after a quick look at the pic, it looked to be a good cam placement but not properly aligned with the fall. I expected a regular cam in such a placement had a reasonable chance of self-correcting, as described above, and probably would have held. Or the angle of the stem would have been significant enough to torque it out of the placement completely and it would have ripped under load. The breakage under this torque alone is what caused me to scratch my head.

After reading michael's report (which was posted while I was writing my own post, and therefore didn't account for the new info), which offers a clear explaination of what most likely happened, it seems pretty clear that the flared nature of the placement, as well as the inability of the piece to rotate at all in the crack, is what overloaded the lobes and caused the breakage.


k.l.k


Dec 19, 2007, 9:48 AM
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Re: [tomcat] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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tomcat wrote:
I'll venture there are ten times as many Aliens in use over a twenty year period as there are Link Cams in two.And there have been more than just this one that blew up.So if three or four Link Cam failures in two years vs what 10 or 12 Alien heads in twenty,which one has the better track record?

For those who have not been following the Aliens/Link Cams ordeals, the quick answer is that Tomcat has missed the point of the analogy.

Folks are suspicious of CCH for two reasons: First, numerous, repeated manufacturing defects which caused Aliens to fail at extremely low loads in both test situations and seemingly "ideal" placements in vertically-oriented, parallel sided cracks. Second, CCH's response to one of many such failures was to come online and accuse the victim--who posted a failure report complete with real-time still photographs--of lying and falsifying evidence. Other aspects of CCH's response have suggested extremely poor judgment. Currently, due at least in part to legal difficulties, CCH has essentially no public dialogue with the climbing community.

In this case, we have a report of the failure of a cam in what was clearly a sub-optimal placement (and I've done LST probably a dozen times or more). And the manufacturer's response has been quick, public, polite, and responsible.

For the record, I don't own Aliens or Link Cams.


tomcat


Dec 19, 2007, 10:12 AM
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Re: [k.l.k] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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I'm well aware of the circumstances of both the Alien failures and the Link Cam ones,and the responses of both manufacturers.

Manufacturer's responses don't mean squat when you deck.Good gear does.

Link cams don't solve any current gear issue that I know of except for people inept at planning and choosing gear as they climb.You still need seven Link Cams for seven placements,just as you would any other piece of gear. I'm sure there are times when it would be great to have the kind of overlap Link Cams provide,but I don't know any skilled climbers that have been much hampered by the lack thereof.See Indian Creek.

At the end of the day it looks like OP blames the original poster who owned the failed cam for placing their product in a pod that I'm sure people place other cams sucessfully in all the time.If they are not good except when the stem is perpendicular to the head that's a step backwards.If you have never whipped onto a Camalot where the stem is not perpendicular to the head we can stop discussing right now.

I'd be the first to agree the design looks like it has limitations.I feel the same way about Aliens due to the small size of the parts involved.They started out as specialty aid gear,caught some falls and morphed over to trad.And as such I'd venture they avoided some injuries and have caught many more whippers than Link Cams,in placements where other gear often would not work,which will not be the case with Link Cams,because they don't solve any gear issue other than poor planning.

I'd also agree with what Healy said about people today having goof proof expections(my words) of gear today,vs. what was the norm back in the day,but I don't personally think it applies here.CCh's response didn't suit anyone as far as I know,and OP's has plenty of slick polish while telling the deckee basically he should have used a C4.

I'll bet an internet dollar there will be more decks/injuries/failures of those link cams in the next couple years than all the Alien ones combined.And OP's corporate response will be great.

And you all know what I said is correct.Failure rate of Link Cams far exceeds that of Aliens.


k.l.k


Dec 19, 2007, 10:46 AM
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Re: [tomcat] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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Yes, what the manufacturer is saying is that the failure appears to be user error. ("Polish" is fine with me in this instance, since the response so carefully avoids insulting the poor guy who decked.) But failures due to user error are entirely different from failures due to manufacturing errors.

I do not know if a different cam would hold in that placement, but a link cam is the last thing I'd take on that climb.

LST is a left-leaning line of pin scars and flared pockets. At 20 feet, there is a parallel flare (visible from the ground) that takes a perfect #4 Friend that protects the crux move. The rest of the climb is a straightforward and easy hand crack. Since it is basically a V1 highball problem to 5.9 hands, it has long been a popular and moderate free solo. As a lead, it is different. The crux is well-protected with a big cam, but getting there is a different story.

I would not trust pro of any sort (aside from an angle) in those opening flares. The presumption is that if you are good enough to lead a 5.11 crack, you are solid enough to solo the first 20 feet of 5.9 or maybe 5.10a. But that start is technical and insecure, and the last time I did it (2000?), it seemed to me that the footholds had begun to polish. But like many if not most JTree routes, the first section of the climb is essentially a no-fall zone. I personally have never seen anyone take a real fall on pro in that section. Now we know how at least one such scenario turned out. Maybe some free spirit on this forum will volunteer to go up there and bomb onto some Aliens.

The Link Cam is clearly a highly-specialized piece of gear that is probably best suited to highly experienced climbers for use in fairly unusual situations.

JTree is a dangerous place-- climb safe.


pwscottiv


Dec 19, 2007, 10:46 AM
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Re: [rightarmbad] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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rightarmbad wrote:
pwscottiv Do you really have the exact knowledge of the cams construction to comment on it's metalurgy just by looking at it?
How about you list the various components and their makeup as you see it and then let OP reply and see how close you are.
While you are there you may as well comment on any heat treatment or other processing that has taken place as well as the testing process and computer analysys.
May as well go so far as to suggest further testing that may reveal their fatal floors for all to see.

OK, I'll do my best to reveal their "fatal floors".Crazy
I think I've already mentioned quite a bit about the manufacturing processes that have been used with respect to the failed component. For me to blab on about the construction of the rest of the cam would be a waste of both my time and yours. As I said before, the components that have been failing are 17-4 Stainless Steel that's been formed using Powder Injection Molding. I already spoke quite a bit about what I thought about the post-processing for that material and one of the inherent limitations of PIM (porosity), so I'm not gonna rehash that here.

In the end, I think the problem isn't one thing, but a combination of the basic design not being a very sound idea in the first place, no statement of operating limitations by the manufacturer, and problems with the manufacturing processes.


(This post was edited by pwscottiv on Dec 19, 2007, 10:50 AM)


healyje


Dec 19, 2007, 10:54 AM
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Re: [tomcat] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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tomcat wrote:
Failure rate of Link Cams far exceeds that of Aliens.

Look, you say you understand the difference, then launch and mix several very different issues, some with merit, but then end this way. No, the failure rate of Aliens far, far exceeds the failure rate of Link Cams. This incident posted by the OP wasn't a failure of the cam - it was a failure in choosing to use it there.

And exactly which part of "not a regular cam" don't you get? All cams have advantages, disadvantages, and unique attributes - they are in no way co-equal - some are better suited to various placements than others. Continuing to suggest a valid comparison to 'normal' cams you basically saying you don't see the limitations of the design and would place it in that pod expecting it to hold. Good luck on that.

The design limitations on the Link Cam and it's [learmed] use do not parallel Aliens evolution from aid piece to "regular" cam. [Good] Aliens were more or less capable of that role where as I don't believe anyone is going to be walking around with an entire rack of Link Cams anytime soon.

You're 'planning' comments are more on target, and I agree that is part of their 'versatility'.


pwscottiv


Dec 19, 2007, 11:12 AM
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Re: [healyje] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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healyje wrote:

pwscottiv, I think we agree on a lot of points in this discussion, but here I think we part company. If safety were the ultimate goal, no one would be in the business at all. Willing 'guinea pigs' is what we've essentially been all along, most of you are just too young to realize it. Some incredibly bad gear has gone by over the decades - ironically, most of it well-made and robust, just poorly suited for the purpose of protection. There would never be innovation in climbing if designs had to be vetted as fool-proof for today's 'average' climber as described by some in this thread.

Manufacturers have a responsibility to produce the best possible products they can, but history is replete with dead-ends and products which need significant expertise to wield appropriately. And no, I'm not implying the Link Cams are a dead-end product, but rather one that requires some expertise to wield effectively and safely. In general, I think OP is doing a good job relative to the introduction and service of Link Cams. If the limitations have not been well-stated by them, I'm more than willing to chalk it up to a bunch of highly experienced folks who on one hand were excited about the pure potential of the design on one hand, and intuitively avoided such placements when field-testing them on the other.

It may turn out the liability costs of the general population of climbers using these is just too high in the long run for them to stay on the market, but I'll consider that a loss to a few due to the folly or inexperience of the many. Again, it must be a generational phenomena that simply because gear is sold commercially it somehow means climbers are in some way mysteriously absolved of their own responsibility and imperative in judging the fitness of the gear they use.
I do agree that innovation IS important, but at this point in the evolution of climbing equipment where there's already designs that have proven themselves to be highly reliable, I think it's irresponsible of a company to have a product that could easily break sitting on a shelf right next to one that is almost impossible to break. Yes, I know the whole thing about buyer-beware, but what if it's some young kid who's just getting into climbing and doesn't know which companies he can trust? That's why there are regulations for medical devices... Originally anyone (you, me, or whomever) could make some piece of crap in our back yard and tell some doctor that it was a new fully-tested and safe device that they could implant in their patient... Eventually it became apparent that safety/reliability needed to be taken more seriously and treating patients as guinea pigs needed to end. That's not to say that we NEED to have a regulatory group review all new climbing devices. What I am saying is that, you're right in saying that climbing devices were pretty ghetto (by today's standards) in their infancy... But should we really be ok allowing devices to be on the market that take that level of safety back to the days of climbing equipment when you couldn't trust it? I know that someone with sufficient climbing experience or engineering knowledge should be able to see the inherent weaknesses in the design, but should we be ok with some kid killing himself because he thought that this cam could be loaded just like any other cam on the market? At a minimum they need to make it painfully clear to the buyer that loading this cam incorrectly will likely cause it to fail... And I just don't believe that their engineering team couldn't see that before problems in the field occurred.


pwscottiv


Dec 19, 2007, 11:19 AM
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Re: [michaellane] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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michaellane wrote:
In reply to:
pwscottiv: So, although it's just speculation, I would guess that there was some sort of pressure from your marketing/management departments to not talk about "limitations", as it might scare potential customers away... Do you see my point?

No, I don't. You're making a huge assumption that is completely inaccurate.

Regardless of your experience in other industries, at this company, we believe in doing everything possible to a) build great products and b) make sure people use them safely.

That includes being honest with our customers.

Every design in the world is a compromise: you give something up to get some other benefit. Link Cams are no exception.

The range is a huge benefit in many situations. But the cams are heavier than most and the links can present challenges that must be considered when placing them or they could become damaged. Every dealer and climber we've ever talked to can tell you that we've been clear about that since we introduced Link Cams.

As Roy Hinkley pointed out, the sales and marketing departments are my departments so whatever influence and direction that comes from this side of the building comes directly from me and I'm telling you straight: what you suggest happened ... didn't happen.

--ML

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Michael Lane
Omega Pacific

Are you telling be that you never loaded these laterally to see what sort of loading they could withstand before yielding or breaking? If you did, then why didn't you state the limitations in the instruction manual?


the_climber


Dec 19, 2007, 11:31 AM
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Re: [dreday3000] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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dreday3000 wrote:
Bottom line? I ain't gonna buy linked cams no more.

Quite a silly thing to say don't you think?

As stated in Michaelís summary of the report; The nature of the placement and the mode of failure are completely intertwined.

As placement adjustment/failure was occurring the orientation changed, this is what lead to the failure. And as it appears the only the lobes on one side endued up holding the force of the fall, but they ended up in a less than ideal orientation. Ie. They were not symmetrical. This could cause any cam to fail.

It's quite apparent that there was NO issue with how this cam was manufactured or designed with regard to this failure. It was a less than ideal placement that unfortunately failed. That is an unfortunate aspect of trad climbing; we work with what we have. Many people used to use aliens in such placements rather than BD, WC, Metolius Cams... Why, because they seemed to handle the less ideal placements better. Bottom line is there were limitations within the placement that were not seen or considered.




Not meaning to single you out there, it's just that these kinds of off the wall opinions seem to be everywhere these days on this site.


(This post was edited by the_climber on Dec 19, 2007, 11:52 AM)


the_climber


Dec 19, 2007, 11:32 AM
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Re: [pwscottiv] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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pwscottiv wrote:
michaellane wrote:
In reply to:
pwscottiv: So, although it's just speculation, I would guess that there was some sort of pressure from your marketing/management departments to not talk about "limitations", as it might scare potential customers away... Do you see my point?

No, I don't. You're making a huge assumption that is completely inaccurate.

Regardless of your experience in other industries, at this company, we believe in doing everything possible to a) build great products and b) make sure people use them safely.

That includes being honest with our customers.

Every design in the world is a compromise: you give something up to get some other benefit. Link Cams are no exception.

The range is a huge benefit in many situations. But the cams are heavier than most and the links can present challenges that must be considered when placing them or they could become damaged. Every dealer and climber we've ever talked to can tell you that we've been clear about that since we introduced Link Cams.

As Roy Hinkley pointed out, the sales and marketing departments are my departments so whatever influence and direction that comes from this side of the building comes directly from me and I'm telling you straight: what you suggest happened ... didn't happen.

--ML

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Michael Lane
Omega Pacific

Are you telling be that you never loaded these laterally to see what sort of loading they could withstand before yielding or breaking? If you did, then why didn't you state the limitations in the instruction manual?

Likely because it's a limitation that could potentially be applied to most cams regardless of brand.


(This post was edited by the_climber on Dec 19, 2007, 11:34 AM)


michaellane


Dec 19, 2007, 11:49 AM
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Re: [pwscottiv] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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In reply to:
pwscottiv:

Are you telling be that you never loaded these laterally to see what sort of loading they could withstand before yielding or breaking? If you did, then why didn't you state the limitations in the instruction manual?

You're changing the subject a little. But no problem.

I've already said we did perform that test.

Our instruction manual says: "... be sure not to load the links themselves over an edge as this could damage them. Such damage requires that your Link Cam SLCD be retired and destroyed."

As I mentioned in an earlier post, we will be a little more specific to reinforce this statement in future editions of our instruction manual.

As to why we didn't provide specific ratings or strength measurements in the manual ... Whenever we provide hard, subjective numbers, they're based on industry-accepted tests and standards. Breaking cam lobes in half is not a standardized test. That we found our linked assemblies to be stronger than other major brands was a good thing, but we still recognize that the length of unfolded linkages could become more easily damaged than other designs and made note of it in the instruction manual.

--ML


pwscottiv


Dec 19, 2007, 12:20 PM
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Re: [the_climber] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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the_climber wrote:
Likely because it's a limitation that could potentially be applied to most cams regardless of brand.
I think most experienced climbers/engineers would argue that claim... It's obvious that these cams are MUCH more fragile, than say a new Camalot, when loaded laterally.


the_climber


Dec 19, 2007, 12:38 PM
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Re: [pwscottiv] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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pwscottiv wrote:
the_climber wrote:
Likely because it's a limitation that could potentially be applied to most cams regardless of brand.
I think most experienced climbers/engineers would argue that claim... It's obvious that these cams are MUCH more fragile, than say a new Camalot, when loaded laterally.

I think most experienced climbers/engineers would be more likely to argue that one must take certain considerations when using a link cam compaired to a more simple design of cam simply as a function of design. I'm also quite certain that an experienced climber or engineer would agree that the potential for failure of any cam cam loaded laterally can in the right situation lead to failure. This situation happened to be the right situation. Also consider that it appears the only 2 of the lobes were engaged at the time of failure. My best guess is that in an ideal situation/placement the device would already have lost ~50% of it's strength at that point. The Totem cam (just as an example, yes I know it's has yet to be released) is designed so it can be placed with only 2 lobes engaged. However, drops the strength rating of the cam in half in that situation, and that is with direct loading on the lobes.


pwscottiv


Dec 19, 2007, 12:39 PM
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Re: [michaellane] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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michaellane wrote:

You're changing the subject a little. But no problem.

I've already said we did perform that test.

Our instruction manual says: "... be sure not to load the links themselves over an edge as this could damage them. Such damage requires that your Link Cam SLCD be retired and destroyed."

As I mentioned in an earlier post, we will be a little more specific to reinforce this statement in future editions of our instruction manual.

As to why we didn't provide specific ratings or strength measurements in the manual ... Whenever we provide hard, subjective numbers, they're based on industry-accepted tests and standards. Breaking cam lobes in half is not a standardized test. That we found our linked assemblies to be stronger than other major brands was a good thing, but we still recognize that the length of unfolded linkages could become more easily damaged than other designs and made note of it in the instruction manual.

--ML

Here's the deal, while I think your cam design is definitely very creative, I think it creates additional risks (especially for the beginner). Most cams on the market are pretty forgiving with respect to not self destructing when loaded improperly... I'm not saying that you can't damage other cams beyond to the point where they can't be used again, but most will distort as opposed to failing catastrophically. At the minimum, I think it needs to be made painfully clear to the user what the limitations are (including many diagrams of different loading scenarios), so climbers using it will know what it can and cannot do. From what you just said, I guess you guys are going to do something like this.

Also, I do find it a bit concerning to see how the material is failing... The stainless should have bent to some degree before failure (and this guy wasn't even climbing in cold conditions), but it doesn't look like there's any distortion from the pictures I saw. Allowing the material to fail in a brittle mode definitely makes this cam more dangerous to use. I'm sure part/much of that can be attributed to the PIM process that was chosen... I have personally had the same problems when specifying that for medical instruments. As you probably know, porosity(even if it's very low %) and embrittlement can be pretty serious problems.


dreday3000


Dec 19, 2007, 12:41 PM
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Re: [the_climber] Link Cam Report [In reply to]
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the_climber wrote:
dreday3000 wrote:
Bottom line? I ain't gonna buy linked cams no more.

Quite a silly thing to say don't you think?

As stated in Michaelís summary of the report; The nature of the placement and the mode of failure are completely intertwined.

As placement adjustment/failure was occurring the orientation changed, this is what lead to the failure. And as it appears the only the lobes on one side endued up holding the force of the fall, but they ended up in a less than ideal orientation. Ie. They were not symmetrical. This could cause any cam to fail.

It's quite apparent that there was NO issue with how this cam was manufactured or designed with regard to this failure. It was a less than ideal placement that unfortunately failed. That is an unfortunate aspect of trad climbing; we work with what we have. Many people used to use aliens in such placements rather than BD, WC, Metolius Cams... Why, because they seemed to handle the less ideal placements better. Bottom line is there were limitations within the placement that were not seen or considered.




Not meaning to single you out there, it's just that these kinds of off the wall opinions seem to be everywhere these days on this site.

Silly? Are you kidding me? Contrite maybe, but I'd say its a pretty darn logical thing to say. I'm trusting my wellbeing to my rack, you better belive I'm going to start second guessing what appears to be sub par equipment.


And what exactly do you mean by 'failure'? There are two different issues here as far as I'm concnered
1 ) The cam not holding because it was a sub par placement (still debatable as far as I'm concerned)
2 ) The cam exploding.

Normally the later doesn't follow the former. Right now the linked cams are the only cams I've heard of this type of thing happening.

Furthermore, IMO these cams haven't been in the market them to be busting apart at the seams.
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Partner dominic7


Dec 19, 2007, 12:54 PM
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Re: [michaellane] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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michaellane wrote:
As I mentioned in an earlier post, we will be a little more specific to reinforce this statement in future editions of our instruction manual.

I think this has been a good conversation, but I still find it troubling that this product has scenarios that are being discovered out in the field that lead to material (not placement) failure. I am a fan of OP and think you have handled this situation very well, but I just don't think climbing gear should break under certain conditions and have the report say essentially, "this is ok". It makes me wonder what other yet undiscovered conditions will lead to similar or different failures.

Note that if the piece had just ripped out, dirtme probably wouldn't have even bothered posting it. That I can see as pilot error. Lobes breaking? Not so much.


boadman


Dec 19, 2007, 1:36 PM
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Re: [healyje] Omega Cam Breaking! [In reply to]
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healyje wrote:
knieveltech wrote:
?

Well, hate to sound like a broken record, but how about just looking at them - solid stems, fragile segmented cams? Do you really need to be told or otherwise have it spelled out? Pretty obvious that stout stem can apply significant leverage on those fragile links if allowed to rotate after placing the unit or if it rests on an edge. To be honest, I would think it completely obvious to anyone who considered themselves passed the level of an intermediate trad climber.

The literature is pretty irrelavant in my view as it would be virtually impossible to list or characterize all the potential kinds of placements where you could run into problems with these units.

Actually, as an engineer, I'd look at the cam and assume that they did an analysis of what the added load from the moment arm on the stem would do to the joint unless there were some diagrams with the instructions that specified that those scenarios are unsafe. In the litigious climate, any responsible engineer would have made those calcs before they sold this product.


badsanta


Dec 19, 2007, 1:52 PM
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I agree with domnic7 [In reply to]
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I agree with dominic7. While I think the linkcam is a great product (if it doesn't break or pull out), in the real world, we aren't going to use pro perfectly every time. And gear shouldn't break if it isn't used perfectly. I've fell on many different kinds of cams in different types of cracks and while I have had two 0 TCUs pull out, i haven't had any break. I don't think most other brand cams would have broken when placed in the same way in that spot. I don't think most would have pulled out if placed in the lower half of the cam range. But until that theory is tested in that crack with other brand cams (which I won't do) no one knows. I'll hold off on buying a linkcam, but I'd still use them (perfectly placed).


(This post was edited by badsanta on Dec 19, 2007, 1:58 PM)

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