/ Is a nutkey just a nutkey ?

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Oo on 26 Sep 2012
Just started out trad climbing and been spending my time climbing on someone else's rack. Next item to buy is a nutkey for seconding. Any recommendations? Needlesports seems to sell a wide variety of very similar products ( http://www.needlesports.com/Catalogue/Rock-Climbing-Equipment/Nutkeys ) Any good DIY alternatives?
highclimber - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: much of a muchness though i'd go for the longest one you can get. learn how to remove nuts without one as you can eaasily damage some rock by stabbing at a stuck nut to extricate it!
stonemaster - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: Yes. Good luck.
wilkie14c - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:
The metolius one is good as you cabn give it a smack with the palm of your hand and it wont hurt because of the nice curved end. Saves a crab as it have its integral clip built-in but i still use a crab with mine as I find it fiddly. DIY? why bother for ten quid and it'll never be as good
Tommyads on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:
Pretty much.

There are slight variations but nothing to loose sleep over.

The metolius one with the bolt spanners on is probably more relavent to the states where there is lots of bolts and trad multipitch than here. Not that i have been there. But its still a nut key.

Dmm do one with two hooks on the handle for extrating stuck cams.

I've never felt hard done by because my nut key doesnt have a leash, doesnt retrieve poorly placed cams or tighten bolts. Just buy any of those and they will be good for persuading stuck nuts.

As for the DIY, i would say just spend the tenner... But maybe if your short of coin a butter knife with a hole drilled in it for cord and 'biner?
Lukas V-L - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:
The ones from wild country come with a lanyard which is quite handy.
Stuart William - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: One with a leash or at least a conveniently placed hole for some cord, means no risk of ever dropping it and losing it on longer routes.
As said above, one with a flat end that you can whack with your palm (or a hex) without it hurting for those occasions when there is no other option.
And one with a large enough tip to double up as a spoon when you have nothing else to eat with.
I have the wild country one with a built in krab and leash and find it does the job perfectly.
But having said all that, realistically I think they are all fairly similar and all do the job well, I think at the time I just bought the cheapest one in the shop and 3 years later have never noticed any faults. In fact I have never really thought about the upsides or downsides of it, it just quietly does the job it is meant to and that is all that matters.
John Gillott - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

Should you want to be able to cut through rope as well:

http://www.outdoorgearlab.com/Nut-Tool-Reviews/Trango-Shark
The Ex-Engineer - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:
> Any good DIY alternatives?

In a word, no.

However nutkeys are the sort of gear that it is worth trying to pick up second hand as 20 year-old Wild Country ones still do the job perfectly well.

lost1977 - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

i've always liked the dmm nutter good for if cams have moved in and you cant reach the trigger
alooker - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: I don't like the ones with the cam hooks on, never used them for that purpose as they never fit, get caught in everything and they hurt a lot when you sit on them at a belay
Mark Morris - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: Apart from avoiding to spear yourself on it in a fall, consider the following:
cleaning slots to get a runner in,
pulling the ends of a runner through a narrow thread,
pushing cork into a wine bottle,
opening beers,
spreading cheese/pate into recently bought baguette
first runner on "Comes the Dervish"

Home made not worth it, tried when I started, 20 yrs ago and had access to proper shop to do it in.
teh_mark - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

The Wild Country one with the lanyard is pretty good, but it will take you a few attempts to work out where to clip the damn thing so you don't tie yourself in knots or clip gear to it...
stonemaster - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Mark Morris:
> (In reply to Oo)
> first runner on "Comes the Dervish"
>
That's cheating! RP works perfectly well there....:)

Budge - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

It's never a nutkey it's a fertler or maybe a broddler but never a nutkey


wilkie14c - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Budge:
> (In reply to Oo)
>
> It's never a nutkey it's a fertler or maybe a broddler but never a nutkey

I think sir will find the correct terminology is actually 'pecker'
Gordon Stainforth - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

I'm amazed no one has mentioned that it can be used as a giant skyhook.
alooker - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to teh_mark: haha!
Jamie B - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

I'd get one with a plastic handle - easier to use, harder to drop.
Ciderslider - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: And if you climb at Swanage you can use it to help you top out by digging it repeatedly into the soft earth and using it as a handhold.
ads.ukclimbing.com
GrahamD - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to highclimber:

> learn how to remove nuts without one as you can eaasily damage some rock by stabbing at a stuck nut to extricate it!

Only to a point - tapping using a key is far better than 'ripping' a nut out of a placement

GrahamD - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

I find that the hooks for removing friends are worse than useless - they haven't been any use for their intended purpose and they get the nut key locked into some horrible positions on your harness. If you have a key with them - file them off is my advice.
victim of mathematics - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to Oo)
>
> I find that the hooks for removing friends are worse than useless - they haven't been any use for their intended purpose and they get the nut key locked into some horrible positions on your harness. If you have a key with them - file them off is my advice.

Although I don't use them very often, those hooks have saved me a few cams over the years. They would be painful to sit on though...
Joe G - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Mark Morris:

> pushing cork into a wine bottle,
> opening beers,
> spreading cheese/pate into recently bought baguette
> first runner on "Comes the Dervish"

Oh yes, one that doubles up as a bottle opener is good.
And as an ice axe when you discover surprisingly big snow aprons around the crags in July
And as a spade for digging holes when you need a dump...
But they probably all do that!

tlm - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

You will probably keep it for 30 to 40 years, which works out as a mere 25p per year. Go for it.

Also good for eating fish out of a tin and for spreading your sandwiches.

I tie mine on a bit of cord, and then onto a snaplink, which means you can clip it into the gear while furtling.
GrahamD - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Ciderslider:
> (In reply to Oo) And if you climb at Swanage you can use it to help you top out by digging it repeatedly into the soft earth and using it as a handhold.

I prefer to use it cut 'steps' but I know what you mean ! Off to Swanage for first time in ages this weekend - can't wait !

Guy Atkinson - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:
I've got the wild country pro key with a leash and it's great.. and if you're having a tough time while getting something out you can just drop it and not worry about it falling into oblivion.
Hat Dude on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to The Ex-Engineer:
> (In reply to Oo)
> [...]
>
> In a word, no.
>
> However nutkeys are the sort of gear that it is worth trying to pick up second hand as 20 year-old Wild Country ones still do the job perfectly well.

I've been using my homemade nut key for the last 30 years; it was only homemade in the loosest sense being a "foreigner" made of clutch diaphragm spring steel & fully heat treated; it's way stronger than any you buy.

Mind you for what it probably cost to make, the company could've taken me to a shop & bought me a boxful of proprietary ones.
Stone Muppet - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to victim of mathematics:
> (In reply to GrahamD)
> [...]
>
> Although I don't use them very often, those hooks have saved me a few cams over the years. They would be painful to sit on though...

I'm with Graham on this one, the cam hooks are nigh on useless and only serve to lock the thing at an awkward angle.

If you have a stuck cam and can't reach the triggers, you can always hook a couple of wires over them with similar effect.
Kemics - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

I really frequently use my nut key for fiddling in narrow thread runners. Particularly on pockety limestone i've found some cheeky but completely bomber runners that require poking and hooking out with a nut key.

I'd very highly recommend the wildcountry nutkey with leash.

My friend mocked me for spending the extra 4 quid on the leashed version, then got out his nutkey with a 120cm sling on, way more expensive, heavier and more cumbersome.

(I actually find it extremely useful, if i'm getting boxed I'll just drop the key, it's not so long it'll tangle round you feet, but will then stretch out to my full reach and has a gate built into the side so easily clips away)
beardy mike - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: The BD has a bottle opener on it. This is far more relevant than extracting nuts as the most frustrating thing in the world is not a stuck nut, but a bottle of beer that you can't open after having had an epic and all you want is a cold one.
jwa - on 27 Sep 2012
The correct term is actually proddler.

I've got the Wild Country one but without the leash. The leashed version wasn't in the shop at the time I was buying. I don't climb anything that desperate that I would find myself in a position to drop my proddler. The rounded end is good for banging with the palm of your hand. I wish I'd thought of using a hex for a bit of extra clout. I've resorted to small rocks before and had to leave a small nut half way up a route when no rocks were to hand.
stujamo - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: If you're new to multi pitch,one of your own,and keep the leader's on your harness too........ ;O)
Ava Adore - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

I always take great care not to put my nutkey on a rear gear loop in case I fall onto it. But then I generally put it on a front gear loop and stab myself in the thigh repeatedly. You'd think I'd learn.
jwa - on 27 Sep 2012

I really don't like the look of this. I would be worried about the knife bit somehow flipping out and skewering me or inadvertently damaging my rope, slings or cord.
Toerag - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: I bought a metolius one as it has the smallest end - we use micro nuts a lot over here and the smaller head is a real boon to getting them out. Any old key will get a normal-sized nut out, but micros are the most difficult to extract so it makes sense to use a key that will get them out easier.
Landy_Dom on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:

I got a leashed Wild Country one and I love it. It lives on the side of my harness on a small loop (the eye in the gear loop of the Petzl Calidris). This should prevent self stabbing as much as poss - everytime I've decked I've landed on my back. I've made a mod to the attachment system so the large split ring is now dangling from the top clip and I can clip the nut key into that split ring to take up less room on the harness. Works really well. As said before, the curved end is great for smacking with the heel of your hand. Also love the fact it's made from thicker section steel than most, BUT ground to a taper for extracting really small gear. Spot ON!
Ciderslider - on 28 Sep 2012
In reply to GrahamD: Just got a pass from the boss - so I'm off down there tomorrow (Sat) so might see you - not sure at the moment if it's gonna be the ruckle or cormorant/guillimot - but it looks like the weathers gonna be ok whooohoooo !!!!!!
Then Square and compass after for a hopefully well earn pint (or two ) and a pastie - god I love Swanage
NottsRich on 28 Sep 2012
In reply to The Ex-Engineer:
> (In reply to Oo)
> [...]
>
> In a word, no.


In a word, yes. Get some 2mm sheet steel or similar, trace your design (or copy another) and cut it out. Job done.
Cameron94 on 28 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: I have a metlious torque nut tool which is the same as a wildcountry pro without the leash, it has it's own krab built in but I've added a full sized one because it's less fidlley when I'm pumped or trying to go fast.

I had spare time at work so I took a 2mm x 20mm sheet of hardend steel, traced out the shape of my other nut key onto it and cut it down to the shape I wanted using powertools. I used it a few time's before giving it to a friend who had just started climbing outside.

It's not as comfortable to use as the met one but it does the job.
ads.ukclimbing.com
ceri - on 28 Sep 2012
In reply to NottsRich: so how much does the sheet steel cost, plus the time to do the job, plus doing something to stop the edges being nasty and sharp or rough... Just buy one ;}
stonemaster - on 28 Sep 2012
In reply to ceri: You are too sensible....:)
alooker - on 28 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: there's one on a popular auction site at the moment going cheap. Rest assured, I am not the seller!
cliff shasby - on 28 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo: metolius feather nut key is 21g,i got one when i snapped my old one,but will probrably snap this one quicker...:-)
joshen - on 29 Sep 2012
In reply to Oo:
Just out of interest, anyone ever tried using one as a peg? I've always wondered if that'd work, hammered in with a hex and tied off short.
rocky57 - on 29 Sep 2012
In reply to jwa:
> [...]
>
> I really don't like the look of this. I would be worried about the knife bit somehow flipping out and skewering me or inadvertently damaging my rope, slings or cord.

Top Tip. If youdo have one like this wrap a few turns of finger tape around the retracted blade to stop it coming open.

I have a Petzl Spartha on the rear of my harness and this has several turns or 25mm finger tape on it for the very same reason (the tape has also come in useful for other reasons as well).
jkarran - on 29 Sep 2012
In reply to mike kann:
> (In reply to Oo) The BD has a bottle opener on it. This is far more relevant than extracting nuts as the most frustrating thing in the world is not a stuck nut, but a bottle of beer that you can't open after having had an epic and all you want is a cold one.

Erm... isn't all this talk of bottle opening rather missing the point. A krab makes a much better bottle opener.

OP: One without an overmoulded end, allows you to tap nuts loose using the krab as a hammer, saves bruising your palm.

jk

Rick Graham on 29 Sep 2012
In reply to alooker:
> (In reply to Oo) there's one on a popular auction site at the moment going cheap. Rest assured, I am not the seller!

But I won it!
Thanks for the tip.
A real bargain especially when all the modern ones now are overcomplicated.
NottsRich on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to ceri:
> (In reply to NottsRich) so how much does the sheet steel cost, plus the time to do the job, plus doing something to stop the edges being nasty and sharp or rough... Just buy one ;}

Thinking aloud, it took me 5 minutes to draw a design, 15 minutes to cut it out using a jig saw, and another 5-10 minutes to file the edges to get the profile I wanted. Oh, and another 5 minutes to drill a couple of holes in it. I guess I had the advantage that I've got spare sheet steel lying around and access to tools. Saying that, I'm sure most people could find something (an old roadsign, a thick baking tray, or an old lawnmower blade?)

Some cloth tape wrapped 10 or so times around the handle end to protect your hands, a length of 5mm cord (spare prussic in my case) and a small krab. Job done! My labour is free for me, so from my point of view it saved me 8 of whatever they cost!


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