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Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out
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dustmouse


Dec 2, 2012, 9:05 PM
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Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out
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Hi, my name is Paul and I am new to climbing. I've been indoor a few times and finally decided to buy my own equipment. I will be doing indoor mostly to start with.

I just got a harness -Black Diamond Momentum SA. I'm not actually sure that it is a good choice based on my physique (roughly 6'1", 180 lbs, 32-33 waist). I probably should've asked around before buying it...

I also need to get the rest of the stuff to round out a basic kit. Any recommendations on affordable/reliable shoes, chalk bag, belay device, etc.? I understand that the size of climbing shoe doesn't necessarily correspond to street shoe size. Is there a rule of thumb on what size to get? My feet are disproportionately big - in the US size 12-13 range?

Thanks, and looking forward to meeting climbers on here.


lena_chita
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Dec 3, 2012, 7:36 AM
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Re: [dustmouse] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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For equipment such as harness and shoes, there is no substitute for trying things on.

I hope you got lucky with the harness you bought (I am assuming you at least checked that the waist size on the harness you ordered matches your dimensions?), or that you bought it from somewhere that accepts returns.

Shoes-- find a climbing store, try everything they have, buy the cheapest shoe that fits you. No matter what you buy, you will be shopping for a new pair in a few months.

Chalk bag is not an essential equipment, just get whatever appeals to your fashion sense, or make one.

Belay device-- does your gym have any restrictions? (some gyms don't allow anything other than ATC-type devices, others require to use the gym gri-gris only, etc.) Do you currently know how to belay, and what belay device did you learn on? This, more than anything, would determine your choice.


dustmouse


Dec 3, 2012, 8:31 AM
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Re: [lena_chita] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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Thanks for the reply. I read some reviews on the harness on Amazon and one of the reviewers had a similar build to me and seemed to really like it. I ended up ordering it from REI, so it shouldn't be a problem to return it. I'm going to bring it into the store to find out if it is a good choice for me and if so, get help adjusting it.

The gym I've been going to doesn't have restrictions on bringing your own belay device. I borrowed a harness from a friend and it had an ATC device, so that's probably a good choice for me.

Is REI a good place to go for climbing equipment? I get a lot of my other outdoor stuff there, but not for anything as technical as climbing.


lena_chita
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Dec 3, 2012, 8:41 AM
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Re: [dustmouse] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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dustmouse wrote:

The gym I've been going to doesn't have restrictions on bringing your own belay device. I borrowed a harness from a friend and it had an ATC device, so that's probably a good choice for me.

O.k., I deduce from this statement that you do not actually know how to belay. For future reference, a belay device is not a permanent attachment to a harness.

Are you planning to take a belay class at the gym? The best place to start would be to check with whoever is going to teach you how to belay.

If your partner already has an ATC, and htat is what you are going to learn on, there is no need to buy a belay device right now, if you are short on cash -- you two can pass the belay device back and forth, because hanging the ATC off your harness is not required while you are climbing the gym wall. There is no way you would need a belay device anywhere mid-climb.

dustmouse wrote:
Is REI a good place to go for climbing equipment? I get a lot of my other outdoor stuff there, but not for anything as technical as climbing.

If you have one near you, it is an O.K. place to buy climbing equipment. Their assortment might be limited, and it is definitely possible to find a better deal online if you actually know what you need, but their choices ARE usually geared towards beginners, so you will likely find equipment that fits your needs there.
Their return policy is also very generous.


dustmouse


Dec 3, 2012, 9:01 AM
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Re: [lena_chita] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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lena_chita wrote:
For future reference, a belay device is not a permanent attachment to a harness.

Just so I don't come off as a complete tool, I do know that the belay device is not a permanent attachment. But that is about the extent of my knowledge.

I'll go into REI and talk to someone there. Ideally, I'd like to shop online to find the best deal. There's always the d**k move of trying it in store, chatting up a storm with the helpful employee, then going off and buying it somewhere else online. I don't really like doing that though...

Thanks for your help.


milesenoell


Dec 3, 2012, 9:18 AM
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Re: [dustmouse] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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dustmouse wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
For future reference, a belay device is not a permanent attachment to a harness.

Just so I don't come off as a complete tool, I do know that the belay device is not a permanent attachment. But that is about the extent of my knowledge.

I'll go into REI and talk to someone there. Ideally, I'd like to shop online to find the best deal. There's always the d**k move of trying it in store, chatting up a storm with the helpful employee, then going off and buying it somewhere else online. I don't really like doing that though...

Thanks for your help.

REI is a big corporation and I'm sure they won't hold the d**k move against you if you make your purchase from one of the climbing specific retailers that are small enough to actually notice and appreciate your business.

The one thing I'd add is that the critical part of trying on your harness is to hang in your harness. Every place that sells harnesses has a rope and a biner hanging somewhere for doing this.


Wade308


Dec 3, 2012, 9:39 AM
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Re: [dustmouse] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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If you're in or near Denver, go to the Wilderness Exchange downtown. They have cheap consignment shoes you can try on. I wear an 11 (street size) and they had several that were too big for me last time I checked.

They are good people with good prices on most other stuff too.


dustmouse


Dec 3, 2012, 12:09 PM
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Re: [milesenoell] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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milesenoell wrote:
REI is a big corporation and I'm sure they won't hold the d**k move against you if you make your purchase from one of the climbing specific retailers that are small enough to actually notice and appreciate your business.

The one thing I'd add is that the critical part of trying on your harness is to hang in your harness. Every place that sells harnesses has a rope and a biner hanging somewhere for doing this.

That's a good point. Okay, thanks for the advice.


dustmouse


Dec 3, 2012, 12:10 PM
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Re: [Wade308] Need advice on good, affordable equipment for someone starting out [In reply to]
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Wade308 wrote:
If you're in or near Denver, go to the Wilderness Exchange downtown. They have cheap consignment shoes you can try on. I wear an 11 (street size) and they had several that were too big for me last time I checked.

They are good people with good prices on most other stuff too.

I have heard of that place. I'll check it out. Thanks Cool.


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