Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Review > Capital Climbing > Clasts

Ding ding! Round two for Capital Climbing; whats funny is that when we were filming this review Noodles had set in his normal fashion two routes side by side for filming; when the comp at Shakti Rock Gym came about he set the camera up to film the two routes and then went home to watch the Canadians in the Stanley Cup. Someone knocked the camera and put the other route (The Enix sloper route) out of shot :(

Ah people, thankfully this guys stayed in shot and we were able to get the videos made.

So enough fluff; lets get to talking about holds!!

This review we're looking at the Clasts from Capital Climbing, and the Clast Lip Feature that was featured in our first review of Capital Climbings Barnacles which you can find: here. The holds that are from the same line are the medium Clasts, there are ten of those guys; as we were sent a sample pack of holds we only received five of them.

 Clast Lip Feature

As you can see both the feature and the medium sized holds all follow the same vein; smooth gripping area with the distinguishing lines on the outside of the holds. They are definitely something that stand out from your normal run of the mill shapes that are similar; they're not overly embellished with details like some holds so they really do keep to their simple nature.

Our shapes arrived in pink; once Noodles was done with setting with the Clast Lip Feature and the Barnacles we grabbed the smaller Clasts shape and decided to make a simple comp route with them. The shapes are simple so hell why not make a nice simple easy route in the lower grades for the local comp?
What we set was something that we thought was going to be simple, a sequence that if you stood back and look at it would tell you that you needed to maybe pull a match or so some small crosses to get to the top. As we knew this was going in as a comp route we wanted to test the newer lower grade climbers a little; we didn't want to set a gimme route, we wanted to test them and to make them work for the points.

Setting with these holds is pretty simple, they're all smooth semi jugged holds that will excel on shallowly angled walls; anything too steep and then you're going to running into harder grades despite their easy seeming nature. We chose a nice shallow angle and went to work; as usual the results of what came out of the comp is below in the video:

What resulted is people seemed to like the safety of the feature and really didn't want to step up, bump or to match some of the holds. Now these holds are pretty small, and they're slightly juggy enough that most people will just haul on through a route on them; but slopey enough that people without the confidence or skill level of some moves will find trouble with them. It's clear to see that maybe the sequence that we set was maybe a step or two ahead of where some peoples climbing grade actually was and for us that's fine; it's part of the review process to sit down, watch all of the video and see what happens when people climb! Noodles climbed this route with a bad back, bad ankle and after a couple of long days setting on a ladder. He wasn't graceful getting up the route but if he can get up to the top then we knew we're at the right level (He's still quite subjective on what he climbs these days)

We put these holds through the ringer; they've been through a few cycles of setting and it's plain to see that they're pretty solid holds; the one downside to them (which is also a plus) is that as they go into the wall the edges are a little thin; this stops people from cheating on a route but it also means that if you throw holds around and they hit something then the edges will chip.


Like their big brother these guys will be good for hard or easy routes; they're tricky for beginners as they look like jugs but aren't as incut as expected. Take them past 30 degrees and you have enough meat of a hold to be able to hang but not enough to really campus through moves; go steeper and then the problems get waaaay more interesting and challenging


This guy is a big ol' sloping jug whichever way you look at it. When you look at the smaller versions in this range then there's a whole bunch of pulling fun to be had; this feature isn't the most incut bugger out there but it will go steep; the steeper you go the harder it gets.

OVERALL BUILD: (Note see our earlier review for the Clast Lip Feature)

  • Number of holds: 10
  • Type (Bolt / Screw Ons): Bolt on
  • Price per hold (set price divided by number of holds): $49.95 / 10 = $4.99 per hold
  • Color: Ours are pink but there are great colors available
  • Bolt placement: Middle
  • Sanding: Great
  • Hollow backed: No
  • Soft back (Rubber backed): No
  • Texture: Sand stoney
  • Set size: Small
  • Versatility: Good
  • Pre-drilled screw holes: No
  • Shaper: Chris Neal
  • Weight: TBC
  • Where can you get them: Contact us and we'll hook you up!!
Overall these holds are pretty bomb proof; they're very well constructed with the color going all the way through without too much bleed off at the edges (pink is a bugger to pour) they feel solid when they're in your hands and when on the wall they're bomber. The addition of a set screw placement would be nice on these holds because they can spin on you if you're not careful with your tightening; strange for holds of this size but because of the way we were using them for hands and feet there were a couple that did spin.

Sanding; bolt holes and washer placement are all perfect. 

What is interesting about these holds is the shaping; they are way trickier than you first think when you get them. They are not for beginners unless you set very carefully with them; these holds are aimed at intermediate climbers and above; but you know us we like a challenge and set easy problems with them anyway :) The steeper you go the harder you get, that's generally the same with most holds, but these guys do kind of make thumb catches hard so they do get a little more brutal as you go to harder angles. 



If i'm honest; which I am. I was a little unsure about these holds. The feature I was down with right from the start but the little guys, well I was unsure and then I played with them a little bit and became happier with what they are

These holds (the Small Clasts) are what I'd call evil in nature; for all intense purposes they look, when on the wall like little jugs but they're not! They are evil little slopers that are slightly juggy. On shallow walls they're awesome, on steeper walls these guys shine because they are hard as all hell. You can trick people of all grades with these holds because they're not going to expect what they're getting.

Like I said I was unsure and then well then I fell in love; these are pretty awesome holds; they're not what anyone was looking for but they should fit into anyone's arsenal of holds for setting

Like Mr N I wasn't sold on these holds and i'm still not; I'm having trouble setting with them, maybe with the full range of holds the smalls and the mediums and the feature i'll be able to get to grip (get it) with the whole range. The feature stands out as something that is just awesome; adding these smaller guys to them just made for a interesting setting session, we figured that we were setting easy stuff for the comp but most part I kind of think we didn't hit the mark... I think we were way off; we ended up setting something that was too hard for the clients that were setting for. Sure it challenged them but it was maybe a little too hard for what we wanted


Maybe because of the holds; its essentially a ladder on a shallow angled wall but as the holds are a little tricky and maybe because the feature is there and allows people to stand comfortably it made people not want to move.

I dunno, I think climbers that are climbing V3+ are going to like these holds. I do, when we set hard with them but at lower grades they're maybe a little bit too much, it could be our setting it could be the holds... I know that when we set on steeper walls I like them, but I know what to expect now.

  • Trickier holds than expected
  • Low profile
  • Edges may chip if mishandled

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