Sunday, October 2, 2016

Review > Citrus Holds > Oysters

So when there's a presidential election the exchange rates generally go a little crazy; importing holds from another country is generally expensive but when you have a small handed buffoon and someone who claims to not know how to use email properly in a race for the big red nuclear button then things get a little weird

Where were we going with this?

Ah yes; the exchange rates (elections aside) are sometimes in your favor but most of the time they're not and when they're really not then you tend to shop in your own country.

Citrus is a new company that's actually not far away from where we hide in Canada and when we saw these holds... and the price we couldn't resist asking to review some.

Lets check out the Oysters:
Firstly we'll point out that Citrus really should add some better pictures of these holds on to their website thankfully Noodles is a shutter bug and he took some photos when the holds arrived:

What you're looking at is 7 screw on holds that are best suited for putting onto volumes / aretes to make a surface that you can hold onto, like this:
Using the hold to make the sharp arete of the volume grabbable; of course when we're looking at holds of this nature we're always going to reference the dual texture comp screw onz from Holdz (here) that are pretty much the bench mark for thin screw on holds at present (That review can be found: here). These holds are by no means shabby in comparison but they're not taking the top spot

They're great and do exactly what you'd want them to do; either as an addition to a volume or as thin technical footholds. Remember (if you watched the video) you'll know that these holds were poured from a pre production mold, so the quality that we're talking about here is probably a little bit less than the full on finished product!

As per usual Noodles took these to Shakti and set with them for their initial outing, we'll let him tell you a tale:
Noodles: As per usual when these holds arrived, actually before they arrived I was pretty stoked. New holds arriving is always a happy day for us... it means some work of course but it also means a bunch of fun setting and thinking about what we're going to set

We rock paper scissored for these holds because Chris was pretty keen on playing with them, thankfully he lost (as per usual :D)

My plan, knowing the wall at Shakti was to get these holds onto volumes as much as possible and use some larger feet so that it was the hands and the hand movements that were totally forced. Setting as I or we always say it tricky, what you have in your head isn't always what comes out on the wall and climbers will always try to find a way around your intended sequence

They didn't this time :)
Let me talk you through the route as I intended it to go (see the video and the first guy in the climbing section is the only person that we filmed that got the route (there were others but not many). For reference the route is meant to be between V6 and V8 for the "hard" problems at these competitions. Sometimes I end up setting a little too easy, other times a little too hard, this time it was pretty well on the mark 
1: Start matched
2: Right hand up and match
This is where my beta and that of the climber in the video is different
3: Right hand to the lower hold here (just under the volume) and then left hand to the thin rail on the underside of the volume (can be matched if needed)
4: Right hand down to an awesome double screw on feature
5: Left hand to another double screw on feature... embrace the barn door and just lean to...
6: Wide double screw on... arrange your feet and launch to the top
Lets face it; he's taller and stronger than me... better looking as well :)

On the whole it went down the way I wanted and I spent a good long time working out the moves and putting them together for this route and I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out."


If you're using these holds on their own then you're not really going to go past 10 or 15 degrees if you're are a mutant. A flat wall is going to be hard enough for most people and realistically a slab is where these holds are going to be best.

If you use them as they're more intended for, adding to volumes and onto aretes, then you can do what you wish. We obviously used them around corners to make holds and we've had them on and off of the wall for a number of months and they always end up on volumes :)

  • Number of holds: 7
  • Type (Bolt / Screw Ons): Screw
  • Price per hold (set price divided by number of holds): $20 / 7 = $2.85 per hold
  • Color: Ours are purple, but Citrus has some really good colors
  • Bolt placement: None
  • Sanding: Meh; needs work
  • Hollow backed: No
  • Soft back (Rubber backed): No
  • Texture: Grippy, but not so bad that your fingers will bleed
  • Set size: Small
  • Versatility: Good; great for adding hand placements on volumes and aretes
  • Pre-drilled screw holes: Yes
  • Shaper: Louis Hay
  • Weight: TBC
  • Where can you get them:


I think I kind of said it all above... but let me go a little more into depth.
We love small companies, and when they go out of their way to get a product to us we always put it through the wringer (like everyone else) because they're an "unknown" and we really want to see what their holds are about

We probably abused these more than normal. I've been bombed making video games and setting so we've not had a chance to sit down at a computer and to write about these holds. They have been through probably four resets at the time of writing; we reset every 6 weeks... they have been taken off of the wall, cleaned (pressure washer after a mild vinegar soak) more than that because they keep moving around the gym

What I'm surprised by is that these holds have held up so well; when we reset we drop the holds from the top of the wall so basically these holds have been hit by other holds; thrown into buckets and we've not been nice to them. Generally when you have a set of thin screw ons like these taking them on and off of the wall will cause issues. These guys have nice recessed set screw holes that are holding up really well; the screws aren't sinking into them anymore than they should and I've seen people setting with an impact driver

Or course I'd like to see more sets of these holds because they are so versatile and for the price point and add something to volumes and aretes for next to nothing

I'll be my usual self; yes the sanding is off, I want these to sit flat on the wall. Mind you we did hit them pretty hard with the drill when we used them and the slight flex that they have did suck them into the wall pretty well and maybe the texture could be a little more refined for a competition setting (for a commercial gym that gets lots of traffic its good, not much brushing needed) but other than wanting more of these holds, some thicker versions that are better for feet, some larger surface areas (disc like) that allow some funky moves... you know me, I always want what isn't there :)

For a guy who started making holds for his gym I'm pretty impressed. There are issues that I hope will be ironed out in time

Without reading what my partner in crime has written I can guess what he's said... we've talked about it at length like we normally do.

Is pre-production molds really an excuse for poor sanding? I'm not so sure, I think that it was just a little lazy and takes a little bit away from what was, for me, going to be a great first view of this company's holds.

Am I being too hard?

Probably; but that's how I feel and that's how we've always rolled over here. Nood's complained about the sanding but let is slide slightly. I'm the ying to his yang lol

I had a hard time getting through the first comp problem that he set when he went through it pretty well even with a pair of shoes that are pretty stiff and an ankle brace. I was probably more impressed with the fact that Nood's (who is old, lets face it) could rip through the problem so easily... and I'll say I like the creativity that he used on this route. I think it's part the holds and part the evil part of his brain that made this problem

I really want to see some of Citrus Holds bolt on holds to see where they're really at, these holds are good, they need some tweaking to make them great.

  • Price, cheap
  • Adds great options to volumes and aretes
  • Really strong despite how thin they are
  • Sanding is off but these were pre-production
  • You probably want more of them than just seven :)

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