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Reviews by d0nk3yk0n9 (3)

Silver Star Climbing Helmet (Manufacturer link) Average Rating = 3.88/5 Average Rating : 3.88/5

In: Gear: Essential Equipment: Helmets

Awesome Helmet 5 out of 5 stars

Review by: d0nk3yk0n9, 2009-05-29

I work at a camp's climbing tower and high ropes course and they require that I wear a helmet. I've previously used their Ecrin Rocs that they have for staff to wear, and I thought that they were a pretty decent helmet, although somewhat hot. After I grabbed the CAMP Silver Star off of Steep and Cheap and wore it for a little while, I realized how vastly superior it is. For my purposes, I need a helmet that I can wear more or less all day without it being hot or uncomfortable. I found that this helmet works great. The vents, though they don't seem like much, get the job done, and the entire thing is so comfortable that I forget that I'm wearing it.

Rex (Manufacturer link) Average Rating = 5.00/5 Average Rating : 5.00/5

In: Gear: Shoes: Approach Shoes

Awesome Street Shoe that also Climbs Well 5 out of 5 stars

Review by: d0nk3yk0n9, 2009-02-22

I bought these recently thinking that I would try climbing in them and wear them as a street shoe anyway if they didn't climb well. So, the day I got them, I took them to the gym to see how well they climb. As a test, I decided that I wouldn't put on my climbing shoes until I started to have problems with my feet cutting while wearing these shoes. So, I started doing my normal warm up by getting on this open feet traverse. What I usually do on the traverse to help warm up my footwork is go to a variety of feet as I go, using everything from minuscule foot chips to jugs as feet. The Rex had absolutely no problem with this, as they stuck on every single chip I put them on with absolutely no problems. For the record, I sized them at my normal street shoe size. To climb in them, I simply tighten down the laces, then go. The back of the shoe and the laces hold my foot tightly enough that the sloppiness in the toe doesn't matter too much. Also, the sole is stiff enough that if I toe in on something, the shoe doesn't bend and allow my foot to pop off even though my toe isn't all the way to the front of the shoe. The rubber is great too, with the toe and edging platform just about as sticky as any climbing shoe I've used-- to match feet, I was forced to hop because my foot didn't want to slide on the foot chips due to the stickiness of the rubber.

After doing the traverse, I moved on to some jug hauls, which I easily did in these shoes. No problems whatsoever. Then, I went to some slightly harder stuff, working my way up in difficulty. These shoes had absolutely no problems staying on any feet I used, although I wouldn't want to try to heelhook in them. Also, I haven't tried smearing in them yet as my gym has untextured walls. I should have some information on how smearing in them goes, as I the other gym I go to has textured walls, so I'll try that soon. Finally, I haven't taken them outdoors yet, but I imagine that they would do just fine, although the coarseness of the rock could tear up the rubber.

ARC (Manufacturer link) Average Rating = 1.00/5 Average Rating : 1.00/5

In: Gear: Essential Equipment: Belay Devices & Descenders

It works great... while it still works. 1 out of 5 stars

Review by: d0nk3yk0n9, 2009-01-28

The summer camp where I worked bought a bunch of these last summer to help replace our aging, worn belay devices. These are almost completely identical to the Black Diamond ATCs in appearance, but the quality on these is much worse. They belay fine, but after very little use the plastic coating on the wire wears away, leaving the wire exposed where it can wear on the rope. Some of the ones we had lasted a week or two, while others would go bad after only a few days of use. We were forced to switch back to our old belay devices halfway through the summer because all of these had been retired.

I would not recommend that anyone buy these despite their low price because the coating on the wire will wear off quickly and you will have to buy a new belay device. Spend a few more dollars and get a high-quality Black Diamond ATC that will last years instead.