Thursday, May 7, 2009

Review > Cryptochild > Blades

If you`ve been to any local gym, I`m certain that you`ve come accross holds from So Ill or Cryptochild's holds. They have a lot of unique looking holds that will add the wow factor to your wall and shapes like the Eye Booger and Hands can be attributed to Jason Kehl. Not only is Jason one of the worlds elite boulderers, his spice for life has driven him to create his own line of holds with his company Cryptochild. So from the twisted mind of Jason Kehl, we present the Blades...and of course nothing from Jason is complete without a little weirdness... check out this advert...

CryptoChild Comercial 1 from Cryptochild on Vimeo.

The Blades are a blend between pinches and jugs. On the one hand the larger holds have huge blades on them that resemble a frisbee stuck in a mound of ice cream that are quite obviously jugs, but if you check them out closely you'll see that some of them have an extra blade (or frisbee) that you can use to pinch the hold, just turn the hold and bobs your uncle, pinch to jug with the twist of a wrench!

So as you can see the holds are pretty big and finger friendly so we set up a nice easy traverse starting on the 45....well easy enough untill you get to the last hold. I described the Blades as a blend between pinches and jugs and where all the holds are jugs the exception is this one holds which is a pure pinch. It's the red hearing of the set and we always found ourselves figuring out which grip to use on the pinch. Having two blades on one hold makes it so there are many different ways of gripping the hold. So natuarally, our next step is to put them on the 45:)

On the 45 the holds are comfortable and there is no real effort pulling on the holds and the only challenge came when we tried to get through the pinch hold. Its a really sneaky hold, the two blades on the hold are parallel and have a bit where you can get your fingers in so although its a narrow pinch, it feels as though you can hold on. My pinch strength isn't as strong as Noodles but we both had problems sticking the pinch and ended up using it to bump to the next hold.

So thus far, we're having fun, but the holds don't pose any big problems and to shake things up a bit I set a route starting under the box. The second hold only has one blade and I put it the wrong way up so you can use it as a really, really narrow pinch or somehow use it as a slope. We all thought that the first couple of moves looked difficult enough but it didn't take us very long to get through the sequence.

With holds of this size and having the deep incut, these holds could be set on any terrain. We had them up as steep as 45 degrees but we stayed away from setting them in the roof. The incut is not quite big enough to be called a jug and setting them in the roof would require some work to send.

The set is great for home walls. The shapes are skin friendly, easy to climb on and we had a lot of fun just trying to find the right beta for the pinch hold. For us here at CHR, the holds were the right mix for everyone to have an evening of fun and even after putting the hold upside down on the box there is a sense of gratification after completing the problem. These holds lend themselves well for warmups or for breaks on hard sequences and they're catagirized as easy on Crytochilds web site.

Versatility: Some of the holds have double grabs, others... just rotate them
Screw Holes: But the larger holds could do with them


Ooh, that I like! Nice big holds that are useful in any angle. You can create whatever move you want with these, you can pinch, you can crimp, you can lean, but you really can only do one or the other on any given hold. The cherry on the sunday that is the Blade set is this hold that looks like... well, see I've been describing it in R-rated terms but lets say a double parallel blades... yea! Anyway, this hold will drive you insane. In any given set up, you will find a million ways to hold the darn thing and yet, nothing is quite comfortable enough to be confident when you finally put your weight on it. On the 45, it left us pondering which way we had to set the sucker up to be able to finish the route. Otherwise, the rest of the set allows beginners to find their niche on the overhang since they are large enough to compensate for one's lack in core muscles.

I guess I should mention that they are black and boring and turn grey when chalked which no more exciting. The shapes (except for that one hold) are fairly repetitive as well but serve their purpose nicely although a full route might be a little over repetitive, also, using these as footholds means basically setting up a staircase, but they are on the website as easy!

$62 for five holds

No comments: