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taxexile


Sep 20, 2002, 6:12 AM
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BallNutz
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Apologies if this has been covered before, but how useful are BallNutz? What sizes are most effective? I'm thinking mainly for aid.
Any comments from those who have used them appreciated.
Thanks
Duncan


Partner tim


Sep 20, 2002, 6:58 AM
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BallNutz [In reply to]
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The smallest sizes, where cams (other than say a Zero #1 or #2) won't fit and the other alternative is to bang in a pin (LA #2/3/4).

They're awesome, buy all three. Great for mildly expando flakes etc. I'm going to buy doubles of my Lowe Balls.


punk


Sep 20, 2002, 6:59 AM
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BallNutz [In reply to]
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the 1, 2, 3 and doubles on the 1 and 2 works very well


taxexile


Sep 20, 2002, 7:43 AM
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Thanks for the input guys. I'm a little confused about the number of different "ball nut" products out there. Lowe Balls now seem to be re-branded as Camp Ball Nuts, while the Trango product is called BallNutz. They look remarkably similar and both makes come in 5 sizes. Are they actually one-and-the same product? If not, is one superior to the other?

Also, can I assume from your replies that the larger two sizes are not really worth owning?

Thanks again
Duncan


wigglestick


Sep 20, 2002, 7:55 AM
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BallNutz [In reply to]
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I believe they were originally made by Lowe and were called Loweballs. I still use this name regardless of the manufacturer. I believe Lowe quit making gear such as Loweballs and Tricams and the license was sold to Camp who now makes tricams and Trango who now makes ballnutz. I have all 5 sizes but like everybody else have only used the smallest three. I suppose the bigger ones would be useful in bigger pin scars but I have not had to use them yet. But in that size a good cam hook or a offset nut usually works better.

[ This Message was edited by: wigglestick on 2002-09-20 07:56 ]


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Sep 20, 2002, 6:33 PM
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   As I`ve stated on more than one occassion, I love my Ballnuts. I`ve used all the sizes for both trad and aid climbing. The thing I`ve found with them is that they do need to be set and to do that you simply give them a very sharp tug down in the orientation that you ultimately want them to be in.

I have never lost one due to inability to clean, we found that even when fallen on from about 2 metres they will still clean reasonably easy (and that was the red one). Simply give a sharp tug up then use the trigger to clean as normal.

I used one once in a wildly flaring placement and it held remarkably well, it very much surprised me but hey that`s aid climbing, ya use what ya can and if it works who am I to complain.

...Phil...


ergophobe


Sep 20, 2002, 7:06 PM
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BallNutz [In reply to]
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I don't know about the Trango ones, but the Lowe Ball Nuts are great. I've taken and caught some short falls on them (2-3 meters) and they held both times and cleaned easily.

After her first aid climb, my wife insisted that we buy the whole set (I only owned one). They're not always on my rack, but they are worth having in the toolkit.

Tom


fenderfour


May 25, 2007, 8:47 AM
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Re: [ergophobe] BallNutz [In reply to]
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To hell with all of you naysayers. I have two sets of Zeros and a bunch of Aliens, but I find myself grabbing my ballnutz a lot. They are really good for shallow or narrow placements.

Ballnutz are great. You just have to know how to use them.

1. Modify your nutz: JospehH (healyJE here?) suggested some modifications to Ballnutz to make them more usable. The key modification is to file off the sharp edges on the top of the ball and on the bottom of the ramp. This will in no way reduce the strength of the piece.

Removing the sharp edges will make the ballnuts much easier to clean. It will also help ensure a good placement instead of a ripper.

2. Place you nutz: As with all gear, you need ot look at the placement. This isn't always easy, but it is important. Once placed, give it a quiick tug to set the nut. Proceed with climbing.

3. Cleaning your nutz: If you weighted the piece, the trigger will probably not work. Clip a short draw to the end and pull hard to rotate the nut. The rotation will pop it loose allowing you to pull the trigger.

4. Other mods to your Nutz: adding a sling would make handling your nutz easier. I find them to be a bit fumbly while I'm climbing. The sling gives me an easy handle so I don't drop them.


ericbeyeler


May 25, 2007, 9:07 AM
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What naysayers?
I have found the small 3 sizes invaluable when dealing with small cracks that won't fit small cams. Love 'em!


fenderfour


May 25, 2007, 11:12 AM
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Ok, not in this thread, but others I looked up.

When I bought my Nutz the guys at the shop (local, not REI) were floored that anyone was buying a set of Ballnutz and expected to use them. They did give me a good deal.


desertdude420


May 25, 2007, 11:19 AM
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Ball nuts are great! There's nothing like them for aid climbing. If you take a lead fall on them they can get really STUCK though!


justthemaid


May 25, 2007, 11:37 AM
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Re: [desertdude420] BallNutz [In reply to]
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Holy thread resurrection Batman.

Anyhow... I love them ballz... nuts that is.

Er.

Drat

Nevermind.Wink


sbaclimber


May 25, 2007, 3:30 PM
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Re: [fenderfour] BallNutz [In reply to]
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fenderfour wrote:
To hell with all of you naysayers. I have two sets of Zeros and a bunch of Aliens, but I find myself grabbing my ballnutz a lot. They are really good for shallow or narrow placements.

Ballnutz are great. You just have to know how to use them.

1. Modify your nutz: JospehH (healyJE here?) suggested some modifications to Ballnutz to make them more usable. The key modification is to file off the sharp edges on the top of the ball and on the bottom of the ramp. This will in no way reduce the strength of the piece.

Removing the sharp edges will make the ballnuts much easier to clean. It will also help ensure a good placement instead of a ripper.

2. Place you nutz: As with all gear, you need ot look at the placement. This isn't always easy, but it is important. Once placed, give it a quiick tug to set the nut. Proceed with climbing.

3. Cleaning your nutz: If you weighted the piece, the trigger will probably not work. Clip a short draw to the end and pull hard to rotate the nut. The rotation will pop it loose allowing you to pull the trigger.

4. Other mods to your Nutz: adding a sling would make handling your nutz easier. I find them to be a bit fumbly while I'm climbing. The sling gives me an easy handle so I don't drop them.
5. Warm up and then flatten the round plastic tube below the head of the smallest 2 or 3 loweballs. It will just get in the way otherwise.
e.g.



And yes, from what I have read....Trango and Camp Lowe Balls are the same. Supposedly even made in the same factory.


(This post was edited by sbaclimber on May 25, 2007, 3:31 PM)
Attachments: LoweBalls1.JPG (121 KB)
  LoweBalls2.JPG (95.3 KB)


healyje


May 25, 2007, 11:44 PM
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Re: [sbaclimber] BallNutz [In reply to]
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http://www.rockclimbing.com/...rum.cgi?post=1188682


justthemaid


May 27, 2007, 12:07 PM
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Great post Healyje.

Speaking of ballnuts...

Thought I'd link my pics of a crappy one:


http://www.rockclimbing.com/...ost=1603956;#1603956


(This post was edited by justthemaid on May 27, 2007, 12:08 PM)


tjlynch


Jul 30, 2008, 8:40 AM
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Those last few posts are really interesting, thanks. With all the mods and misc. issues I've read in this thread, I've decided that Ballnutz should be tweaked a bit on the manufacturing line--not that I can do anything about it...


russwalling


Jul 30, 2008, 10:51 AM
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I've never liked the unpredictability of the ballnut units. There is very little middle ground with them, in so much as they are either in there or outta there. Tried them, discarded them. YMMV.


vegastradguy


Jul 30, 2008, 11:16 AM
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i'm with fish on this one. ive carried them sporadically on trad, but ive only used them once or twice, and never with much happiness....

generally, i think they are an aid unit. that doesnt mean that they dont have their place on trad, but, by and large, i dont find myself often climbing anything where a ballnut is going to be my only pro.....(and yes, i know that they are stronger than small cams at that size)


healyje


Jul 30, 2008, 11:31 AM
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desertdude420 wrote:
Ball nuts are great! There's nothing like them for aid climbing. If you take a lead fall on them they can get really STUCK though!

Took six 20-25' lead falls on a #3 last fall and other many falls on them over the years - never lost one to a fall yet. I'm still holding to my position that you have to really get down to the level where millimeters count big when attempting to use them effectively. If that's too much of a hassle then I'd agree you shouldn't bother - I for sure agree it's an acquired taste and a bit of an eccentric one at that. But I'd still rather wing on to a ball nut than any of the micro-cams on the market.


phillygoat


Jul 31, 2008, 2:36 PM
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Now that I have them, I keep finding placements for them. I seem to place the #3 and #4 the most and have taken a few decent falls onto the #4. The basalt out here tends to fracture leaving thin, parallel-sided cracks that are perfect for Ballnutz. IMO they're underrated, but it depends on the type of rock you're climbing...


getout87


Aug 1, 2008, 8:53 AM
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I've used them a few times, and absolutely loved them. I can't wait to pick up a few.


skinner


Aug 1, 2008, 9:11 AM
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I started out with 3 Ballnuts and now I have 2 full sets, they definitely have their place. I wish I would have read the advice on, filing off the sharp edges on the top of the ball and on the bottom of the ramp, *before* I began using them. The first one I every took a fall on, had my second cursing for 10 minutes as he tried to remove it.
The only time "I've" ever had an issue cleaning them, was in cracks that were so shallow, there wasn't enough room for the piece to rotate with an upward tug. In most cases I found a few light taps from a nut tool on the top edge of the ball did the trick.
Do yourself a favor though, and take the file to them as suggested (above), it's makes all the difference in the world when it comes to removing them.. especially in limestone (and I assume in most softer rock), where the edge of that super-hard ball tends to embed itself if you take any kind of fall. Personally I think they're a valuable addition to my rack and sort of fill in a void in the smaller cam range.


Partner holdplease2


Aug 3, 2008, 9:24 AM
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I recently started using ballnutz when aid climbing, after climbing a few pitches with a super-experienced partner who suggested we take two sets on the climb.

We climbed in some pretty tough expando territory, and the key to getting through was the ballnutz. The work anywhere that a thick blade (blue) all the way to medium arrow.

This was especially true when climbing under roofs which traverse. When these roofs expand, the pins tend to just slide straignt out the way they went in while you are standing on them and nailing the next one in. With ballnutz, the ability to avoid nailing and the expansion range of the pieces is invaluable.

Removing the ballnutz can be hard after they have been weighted if you don't have a trick. His (and now my) trick is to funk it gently to one side or the other. This slides the plate off of the ball and makes it very easy to remove.

They have great range, are stronger than many small cams, work great in odd pockets, and help save the rock because you will likely nail less.

From now on I'm going to keep 2-3 blue and red ballnutz on my rack when aid climbing and probably 2 each of the medium sizes.

-Kate.


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