Thursday, March 24, 2011

Review >Teknik > No Shadow Hands / Feet & Fat Sloper

Prepare to get spanked! The name "No Shadow" is not used lightly in the case of the No Shadow hands and feet from Teknik Handholds. We picked these sets up with the Fat Sloper down at the Mountain Equipment Co-op, Noodles as he has some time on his hands has decided to run some (what we call) Blind Tests. We know full well that people will send us holds that are built superbly, but what happens when you get them from a store and not direct from the company? Well this is us helping you, of course we suggest you inspect all holds before buying them but we just walked in, picked em up, payed and walked out...

So if you break down the No Shadow sets, they're like the the Top Out Slopers from Climb It but waaaaay thinner. Noodles even decided to be nice and get the Fat Sloper so we could actually have a hold that we could hold onto. The No Shadow sets (which is two hands and two feet) and Fat Sloper are nice simple shapes, but they are each unique on their own. The Fat Sloper is a shape that you will often see from Teknik. We have other slopers from Teknik that we've had for years and the and this one is similar, but something new at the same time

Our wall is mostly made up of angles from 60 to 45 degrees and the No Shadow sets are pretty much impossible so we broke down the angle by using bolt on features. Putting the hold onto Motivation volume and the Nicros Jug or Not we ended up using the No Shadow feet as hand holds really thin "oh my god hand holds" but hand holds none the less, most people would look at these and would dismiss them as useless for hands AND feet but we like to use hand holds as footholds and as these are evil we figured we'd give it a bash, although with the volumes, the climbs and pulling on these holds became feasible  the spanking was just about to begin.

Jackie came over to play. We haven't seem him in awhile and now that he's off from school he could have a go at the sloper fest that was about to begin. We stayed off the angled walls for our first set but we kept the No Shadow holds on the volumes. It seemed easy enough when we set. Three moves, to and from the Fat Sloper with the No Shadow holds on volumes. The starting holds are No Shadow feet while the finishing hold is a No Shadow hand hold on a Motivation volume. Like a classic sloper problem it was all about balance and foot placement. Before moving onto the 45, we set one more problem on the vertical wall. Jackie had a height advantage and cruised the sequence while the rest of us spent spent some time figuring out which feet to use.

If we thought the vertical wall was giving us a lesson in humility, the problems set on the angled walls were a step above. Even Jackies length wasn't going to help him through these sequences. The first problem we set started on the 60 degree wall and it ended up being to hard for any of us to complete. So we moves onto the the roof and started a problem with two feet on a Motivation volume. We learned our lessons from the previous problems and made a sequence we could all manage. In the end we relied on brute strength and ignorance to complete the problem ;)

What you're looking at when you realistically look at the No Shadow hands are competition holds pure and simple, they are really specific, super thin and super hard holds to get onto. If we're honest (and we're proud that we are) these don't really have much of a place on a home wall! On a gym wall on a corner problem they're going to be amazing, on a slab they'll be super fun but as they're hard on a vertical wall and you can only really hold them in one direction we'd probably suggest passing on them.... that is unless you like super balanced moves or you can top out on your wall!! If you want some evil Fontainbleu style top outs then these are the ticket for you!

The No Shadow Feet.. well they're super thin and hard for feet, so they're brilliant. They're footholds that you have to be super careful with and you have to work to be able to use them, these have a place on everyone's wall, no matter where... same goes for the Fat Sloper, it's awesome fun. It's big enough and fun enough that Noodles went to a different store (same company, different location) to go and get another one. It's hard but do-able hard for everyone and we'd suggest you grab it if you can... and then try to hold it... fall off... get back on etc :D


Sloper madness like these holds are best suited for vertical walls and slab climbing. With the exception of the Fat Sloper, both the No Shadow foot holds and handholds don't have much to offer when it comes to an angled wall. Lucky for us we have volumes hanging around so we could manage to set problems on angled walls. Even so, the holds make for setting hard problems and we didn`t have much success in sending most of the problems on overhanging terrain. The problems are hovering around a V7 but since Mark, the strongest climber in our group is in Horse Pens 40, its hard to gauge.

We're going to suggest shallow angles for the No Shadow Hands, any angle except a roof for the feet and the Fat Sloper... we'll go as mad as you want :)


  • Number of holds:
    • No Shadow Hands and Feet: 2 hands and 2 feet
    • Fat Sloper is one hold
  • Type (Bolt / Screw Ons): Bolt
  • Price per hold (set price divided by number of holds) 
    • NOTE: These were store brought and it's better to get the Fat Sloper in the 5 set (for more fun) and more of the No Shadow Hands in larger sets
  • Color: Fat Sloper is green / No Shadow Feet are blue and the No Shadow Hands are Purple
  • Bolt placement: Middle
  • Sanding: Great
  • Hollow backed: The Fat Sloper is
  • Soft back (Rubber backed): No
  • Texture: Classic Teknik i.e: superb
  • Set size: Small to large
  • Versatility: Little
  • Pre-drilled screw holes: No
  • Shaper: Seth for the Fat Sloper / Zoe for the No Shadow Hands and Feet
  • Weight: Various

From the little Teknik star to the hollow back on the Fat Sloper there are little details on these holds, Teknik holds are always special to hold and we know of people that have broken a classic Teknik (resin) shape and has had a funeral service for that hold :) The sanding is great, the colors are consistent across the board and the bolt holes are well placed and drilled. Considering these are from a store it's bloody impressive.

The color of the No Shadow Hands is great it's a nice dark purple that really looks nice, the No Shadow Feet are a baby blue that's good and even and the Fat Sloper is an off green that looks quite nice. All of the holds were board mounted with bolts and T Nuts included, the packaging is nice and simple (like the shapes) and it looks pretty kick ass on a rack in a store.

If you have a wall or you set you know that Teknik means quality, but sometimes your budget is going to suffer for it a little. Sure, they will last a lifetime (if taken care of) but and lets look at one set the Tron Disks that we want on our wall... 10 holds at $65 = $6.50 per hold and they're not that big, not big at all. $6.50 per hold for something about  the size of a CD across stops us from buying them. And that's our point, you pay for what you get when it comes to Teknik, they know that they make quality holds so they charge you for it, sometimes it's a stiff price to pay and other times you just don't get the holds you want :(


Brought in store. All holds were on boards with bolts and T nuts included

Argh, thanks to the person on the team that wrote the review... I"m in trouble :) HA! Fuck it, who cares. Teknik Handholds are...

Wait for it...

The shit.

They have been for a long time and they remain as one of my favorites, their quality is amazing and the shapes are sooo nice it's just silly. I love reviewing Teknik shapes, I love seeing them and just getting my hands on them. Shame they're bloody expensive, I'd buy more but even at wholesale prices I stop and think twice. I have an order form in my desk drawer for a bunch of stuff, hell I mailed for a price a few weeks back because I wanted to a) climb on the shapes and b) wanted to review their holds some more... it's one of those things where I look at our budget and then spend it else where because I can get more holds from different company's... the Fat Sloper, I want all of them, the Tron Disks I want them, the Pinchtite... I WANT IT NOW! The Mathematics, man I love those holds, gimme gimme gimme. Maybe I should stop being such a tight ass with money...

Oh are you guys surprised? Yeah, we pay for holds... it ain't all a free ride!

When it comes to Teknik holds can someone just send me the entire range so I can be happy?

I got my ask kicked, I believe I was the only person on the vertical wall to use the No Shadow Hands and actually get some weight onto the buggers... the Fat Sloper is fun as hell. So here's the bottom line...
No Shadow Hands: Top outs / vertical walls / blind arete slaps / Stemming routes
No Shadow Feet: Use them as hands, you'll be surprised but pretty much the same as above
Fat Sloper: Just buy this hold, in 10 years when it's classic you'll thank me

I've always liked Teknik holds. I have the notion that these are the holds that will make you strong. I just wish they had a wider selection of holds. It seems to me that they keep re-working their classic shapes into something new and discontinuing the older shapes. Hey Teknik, give us more shapes!

As for these sets in particular, I'm split between them. We have a resin sloper (not made anymore) from Teknik and I found that it was a little smaller and easier to pinch then the Fat Sloper and the No Shadow Hands are just about grabbable, but they're still super hard to hold.

Considering these were brought in store I think the quality is amazing and they've done a great job.

  • Amazing quality
  • Great colors
  • Superb texture and climbing fun!
  • The No Shadow Holds aren't for the faint of heart at all
  • Prices may put people off a little


Anonymous said...

Have you guys considered the possibility of using the No Shadow hands for compression and dihedrals as they were intended?

You say that these aren't versatile but I wholeheartedly gym has over 100 of these and we are constantly fighting over them...we use them everywhere!

Also, the price/size reference is a bit skewed...the tron disks are one of the greatest series...ever. Who cares how large it is if it is a super versatile and usable hold?

And that was probably the lamest way you could have set with a fat sloper...

ntmb said...

We used them on the volumes to do exactly as you suggested, we only had two of them... and two feet as they came in a pack so we did what we could with them. We thought that using the feet for hands was pretty good going to be honest!

The Tron Disks is just a reference as the holds are thin and don't take that much material so they are a little expensive for our tastes. We never said that the Trons were bad,we love em (we don't have them, but we've climbed on them a lot)(they're currently not on sale btw)

As for setting with the Fat Sloper, we set as we wanted to and as we were looking at 5 holds (4 No Shadows and a slope) the scope of what we could do was limited, without adding in other holds from other company's; which is something we prefer to not do.

When it comes to Teknik we'd quite happily review all of their holds, they have one of the best mixes on the planet and some of the best shapes. We can't afford to buy what we want to review so we get them little by little as our budget allows.

Thanks for you comments