Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Review > Plastick > Bananas Small and XL

AHA! Another Canadian company that you've not heard of; we do love getting holds from new people and showing them to the World

You may not have heard about Plastick because they're small, but you might have heard of the guy who shapes, pours and mails out these holds to his customers... his name is Seb Lazure and he's a pretty good climber... you know he climbs for the Canadian team, generally places on the podium at most of the competitions he enters... boulders double digit problems, is sponsored by 5.10 and Organic and when he's not kicking peoples ass' in comps he makes some holds

He's also super humble and a great person all round...

So holds; that's what we're here for right? We have two sets for you this time, both of them are screw ons and they're very minion like...


The yellow guys are the smalls and the orange ones are XL; and as you can see from the walk-through (camera was having a hard time focusing (sorry)) 

We have had these holds for a while, and we like to make sure we perform our due diligence when it comes to a new company. One of the best things is Plastick is based in Montreal so if there was ever a problem we can just go and talk to them directly... thankfully there wasn't any problems after many many months on the wall, both at the gym and at home! We abused the living hell out of them time and time again expecting the material to weaken somehow, or to sink a screw head into the plastic but it never happend

Lets talk routes; the Boss and Chris teamed up to set something that started with a dirty sit start on a couple of the smalls and this was kind of tricky because the small set has so many holds.. lots of holds means lots of choices which when you're routesetting is a great thing. Because we're kind of evil we made sure that we used the smalls for all of the feet as well; why? There are incuts, slopes... tiny jugs and lots of variety that allows you to go completely nuts so when you're looking for something that's just right chances are you can find it.

The smalls are easy to pick out and to use when setting, the XL's are trickier because you can really play with the angle of attack and make moves that make the climbers think :)

So some people skipped the sit down start and found the match to the first XL tricky, Then it seemed that despite giving people two large holds the stem move seemed to catch people off guard (kind of our plan) And then, if that wasn't enough, as these holds were new at the time so no one knew what to expect as they'd not climbed on them before they didn't realize that the last hold was the biggest and it was an easy jump and then move your feet to get to the top

Shorter climbers had a little more trouble as they had to use a little more power than the taller climbers.. as usual Noodles was there taking photos of the comp
Overall these holds climb very very well, they're fun to set with but there are a few things missing... but we'll get to that later on

Because of their large size these holds are easy on a 45 degree wall, not super easy for two of them but there is enough meat for a climber to grab onto that you can go for a steeper angle for sure (we tried em). Looks can be deceiving that is for sure because if you set correctly then people will think that the larger one is a sloper at all

These guys are a real mixed bag because there is everything in there, slopes, crimps and a bunch in between. If you're strong then 45 is where these guys are going to be the best but most people will prefer these holds on a 30 degree wall

  • Number of holds:
    • Bananas XL: 3
    • Bananas Small: 22
  • Type (Bolt / Screw Ons): Screw ons
  • Price per hold (set price divided by number of holds):
    • Bananas XL: $100 / 3 = $33.33 CDN per hold
    • Bananas Small: $84 / 22 = $3.81 CDN per hold
  • Color:
    • Bananas XL: Orange
    • Bananas Small: Yellow
  • Bolt placement: None
  • Sanding: Great
  • Hollow backed: The XL's yes
  • Soft back (Rubber backed): No
  • Texture: Great
  • Set size: XL and Small
  • Versatility: Great
  • Pre-drilled screw holes: Yes
  • Shaper: Seb Lazure
  • Weight: TBC
  • Where can you get them: Contact them: Here 
It's always good to see new companies from around the World, and because these guys are from just around the corner in our neck of the woods is awesome; also because of the exchange rate buying Canadian means holds are cheap :)

For someone making holds in a basement and as a new start up the quality is something that you'd expect from a larger company; the colors are on point, the sanding makes the holds nice and flat and the texture is there; it's smoother on the XL's but the smalls have enough bite to get you up the wall.

Pretty amazing work from one guy; and there are more holds coming as we speak

As these guys are all screw ons all of the holes are drilled straight and are counter sunk... obviously we've tried to sink screws into the material that they're using and it's held up fine. Even with multiple resets these holds have shown no wear from washing and none of them have broken yet

The hollow backs are actually really nice for a new company; normally it takes a few goes with a number of sets before you see something of this quality... and the addition of extra material where the screw will be placed is a very nice touch and makes sure the holds are strong

The one thing we'll point out is that even though these holds are just screw ons it would be nice to have the XL's have a bolt hole added to them so they could be screwed on or bolted to the wall.



I saw these holds at the Tour De Bloc in Vertical Escalade in Montreal and even though I wasn't competing in that competition (I was taking photos) the holds caught my eye so I contacted Seb to see if we could get some to review... he sent them over pretty quickly and we've been using them ever since

I'll be honest I prefer the larger holds than the smaller ones because they're easier to set with than the smaller ones; although that was my first impression upon seeing them and since I've spent a lot of time with the smaller guys I've grown to like them a lot more... as they're pretty much one pad across the entire line I don't find them so great for adding onto volumes (unless you use the slopier ones) because I find them a little too large, which is hilarious if you think  about it. They have a time and a place and honestly setting traverse routes and technical little problems with these guys is where they shine

When setting with either of these sets I just put one screw into the hold and then make the route, ghost through the moves and then get them onto the wall proper to actually try the problem and then obviously I tweak it from there.. it's a long process but pretty rewarding. What I do want to see with the larger versions of these holds (actually pretty much most holds on the market these days) is the option to bolt OR screw my holds onto a wall, it gives more flexibility to setters and gym owners as a whole, sure it's more work when designing and molding the shapes but it would pay off (I feel) in the long run

Overall; a great first view from this new company and I look forward to seeing what else they have in store

I've only played with these holds a little bit (I've been injured so I stayed away from the smaller holds) but I can weigh in on the XL's... these holds are massive smiles that you screw onto a wall :D
They are pretty nice shapes, the radius of the grabbing area is nice and smooth and as I had some finger issues they we're nice to grab onto as part of my rehab.

I did set with these once and given that there is only three of them I had to use other holds to flesh out the problem that I'd set, the main moves were with these guys and they make for some nice matched moves on steep walls, they're good enough that most people will be able to grab them, match and then pull up if the wall is around 30 degrees (obviously the jug from the set is the exception here)

There are more sizes of this line of holds available and I'd like to get my hands on them; there are also a bunch of other holds that I'd like to play with... the Dots look like a pretty good range
These holds are cheap because of the exchange rate and are worth a look

  • Great new company from Canada; cheap (currently) because of the exchange rate
  • Good texture
  • We'd like to see options that add bolt hole placements so that the holds can be screwed or bolted on

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