/ NEW REVIEW: The Beta Stick Compact

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Compact Beta Stick Montage Image, 4 kbMark Glaister puts the Compact version of the Beta Stick through its paces.

Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/review.php?id=5115
tom.fox on 30 Nov 2012
In reply to UKC Gear:
i thought it was april 1st for a minute....
davo - on 30 Nov 2012
In reply to UKC Gear:

This in my opinion is not a review but simply an advert. I sport climb all the time and don't know many people that would recommend a beta-stick. They regularly break, the wire at the end normally expands and no longer works and the plastic rings down the shaft that hold in place when lengthened regularly lose their strength and place on the stick.

I don't mind if it is an advert but please call it that! A review would reasonably be expected to cover both pros and cons of the piece of equipment.

Cheers Dave
fil - on 30 Nov 2012
In reply to UKC Gear: we are on our 3rd beta stick in 3 years. The latest one lasted 1 day before 1 of the locking rings stopped working. Quality!
Ian Patterson on 30 Nov 2012
In reply to davo:
> (In reply to UKC Gear)
>
> This in my opinion is not a review but simply an advert. I sport climb all the time and don't know many people that would recommend a beta-stick. They regularly break, the wire at the end normally expands and no longer works and the plastic rings down the shaft that hold in place when lengthened regularly lose their strength and place on the stick.
>
Possibly plenty of people wouldn't recommend without reservation but loads of sport climbers own them and find them very useful. There isn't really much competion in the end. To give a different slant I've had a compact for more than 5 year without any trouble - maybe the shorter lengths put less strain on the locking rings.

davo - on 30 Nov 2012
In reply to Ian Patterson:
> (In reply to davo)
> [...]
> Possibly plenty of people wouldn't recommend without reservation but loads of sport climbers own them and find them very useful. There isn't really much competion in the end. To give a different slant I've had a compact for more than 5 year without any trouble - maybe the shorter lengths put less strain on the locking rings.

I agree there isn't much competition (I ended up making one myself from decathlon) and I do know a few people that have had no problems with them. However most people I know have had problems with theirs and certainly I think it is fair to say that they are not the most durable piece of kit in the world.

Yes they are useful I just think that this article is an advert and not a review. This discussion is much closer to a review wih both positives and negatives being made (mainly negatives from me!)

Cheers Dave

pauldr - on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to UKC Gear:

Its borderline cheeting realy isnt it ...
thermal_t - on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to fil:
> (In reply to UKC Gear) The latest one lasted 1 day before 1 of the locking rings stopped working. Quality!

I just superglued it back onto the collar underneath when this happened to me. They seem to be a bit stingy on the glue in the factory.
eggburt1952 - on 01 Dec 2012
if it looks like cheating and it sounds like cheating it probably is cheating ? why do it?
davo - on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to eggburt1952:
> if it looks like cheating and it sounds like cheating it probably is cheating ? why do it?

Constructive comment there!

Matt Clifton - on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to UKC Gear:
weenie sport climbers and they don't even have the balls to climb in lycra like their ancestors. Mark, please develop a mod so it can place the crucial sideways rp3
Gambit - on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to UKC Gear: Thanks I find these reviews useful and not ashamed to say I learned something again, re rodeo clipping. We all need to define out own Ethics and risk we are prepared to take and just be honest.
davo - on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to Gambit:
> (In reply to UKC Gear) Thanks I find these reviews useful and not ashamed to say I learned something again, re rodeo clipping. We all need to define out own Ethics and risk we are prepared to take and just be honest.

What review? It's just an advert!

The Lemming - on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to UKC Gear:

I received some sound advice when I first started Sport routes which was verbatim on the Catwalk, "If I see you using a stick, I will break it".

But then, what does Mr Lovitt know. :-)
Tommyads on 01 Dec 2012
In reply to davo:
> (In reply to Gambit)
> [...]
>
> What review? It's just an advert!

Same as all ukc reviews? Have they ever done a negative review? Never follow gear advice on here because its all positive. I dont find anything i read credible because its seems so fake spouting all the buzz words and phrases you get about all kit.

Some one add a review for some gear they went and used and it fell apart, didnt function that well or just didnt meet the marketed claims and performs just as averagely as everything else.

cuppatea on 02 Dec 2012
A cheeky bit of product placement/sponsorship/review helps raise cash for running forums and printing mags ;-)
In reply to Tommyads:
> Same as all ukc reviews?

No it isn't actually. You will find critical reviews and you will find plenty of constructive comments about missing features, poorly designed features and other aspects of gear.

An example of how this works positively is the rope bag review we published initially in July 2011 and then updated in October 2011 - http://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/review.php?id=3625

In July 2011 we made some comments which were very critical of the Edelrid rope bag, and we also highlighted problems with the Moon Voyager bag and the Beal Combi Cliff bag. The Edelrid range was completely re-designed after this (it was on the cards anyway). This year at Friedrichshafen Ben Moon told me that he had responded to the comments we made about his bag and improved his new version. The comment about the dodgy zip puller for the Beal bag was also fed directly back to Beal by Lyon Equipment.

So in this case a critical but constructive review has had positive benefits for the manufacturers and end users. The rope bags still functioned as decent products, so they didn't need a hatchet job doing on them, but they weren't as good as they could be.

In the case of the Beta Stick - this review is an honest appraisal of using the device during a period of a few trips. If it falls apart over the next few trips then that wouldn't be good and we could add that to the review. So far it hasn't fallen apart so it would be wrong to say that in the review. It has performed exactly as designed and is a clever piece of kit. It is also a new model so it wouldn't be appropriate to judge it on the performance of old models.

Alan
3leggeddog on 02 Dec 2012
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

I'm not sure about that Alan, I recall an advertorial for snake oil underwear with magical properties and water bottle cases which "lined up" water molecules to make them "more effective". Accappi?

The advertorial ended with a comment on how the stuff was being tested by ukc some of the testers being scientifically qualified. I do not recall seeing any results of these trials.

As for clip sticks; a bulldog clip, a few zip ties and dare I say it, a stick are all you really need. The components will fit in your pocket, never mind your hold luggage (assuming you don't have a special stick which simply must go to Spain with you).
Bruce Hooker - on 02 Dec 2012
In reply to pauldr:
> (In reply to UKC Gear)
>
> Its borderline cheeting realy isnt it ...

borderline? !

Get a long enough one and you're top roping :-)

Truly mind-boggling.

john arran - on 02 Dec 2012
In reply to 3leggeddog:

> assuming you don't have a special stick which simply must go to Spain with you.

... or alternatively, depending on where you go, you may be able to hire a proper full-sized Beta Stick when you're there for very little money and save the hassle of finding sticks and messing with bulldog clips.

Not sure about Spain but we certainly have them for rent for guests here in France.

davo - on 02 Dec 2012
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

>
> In the case of the Beta Stick - this review is an honest appraisal of using the device during a period of a few trips. If it falls apart over the next few trips then that wouldn't be good and we could add that to the review. So far it hasn't fallen apart so it would be wrong to say that in the review. It has performed exactly as designed and is a clever piece of kit. It is also a new model so it wouldn't be appropriate to judge it on the performance of old models.
>
> Alan

Hmmm... fair enough it performed well over a couple of trips but I would say that it is fair then to make a comment in the review that longevity and durability can not be commented on. Also I would say that durability in pieces of equipment such as these is a key part of its function. When new Beta-Sticks work well and are very handy however it has been my experience and that of most sport climbers I know that they tend to start to fall apart quickly.

To say it is not fair to compare its durability with previous models does not really stack up in my opinion. It is very similar (almost identical) to previous models and I think a quick discussion with any of your friends that did a lot of sport climbing would show that many (not all I grant you) would say that they are very poor in the durability department.

As I have said previously I just don't think this is a fair review, it is just an advert.

Personally my opinion is that they are handy bits of equipment that work well when new. Size and lightness is good which makes taking them abroad viable. However they are not cheap and tend not to last well. Most people I know have had them break very quickly and have had to put tape around the locking rings. Obviously I know a few people who have had no problems with them. Overall if you want a clip-stick for use from the ground and don't need to take it up the route then I would make your own otherwise if you want something to take up a route or abroad then Beta-Sticks are a good option but be aware they need to be well cared for or they will break!

I think the problem with the article about the sticks is that it really doesn't have any negatives when most people who use or know about them would say there are plenty of negatives about them. This doesn't mean they are useless and that people shouldn't buy them, it just means that an honest and fair minded review would include these. In my opinion this would make the review much more credible and much more likely to influence/change my own (to be honest fairly negative) opinion towards them.

Cheers Dave


El3ctroFuzz - on 02 Dec 2012
In reply to davo:

What do you mean there isnt much competition.

http://www.freeimagehosting.net/44qx5

This Cost me 20 for the pole, and 2 hours work for figuring out the design and bending coat hanger into place. It will take even less time if u copy this or other designs online..

This is shorter than the Beta Stick when packed (65cm) and is almost 2 times as long (5 meters).

And the end is virtually indestructible. Even if it did break somehow, just find another wire coat hanger.

In the words of a wise Meerkat. Simples.
Ed F - on 02 Dec 2012
In reply to Bruce Hooker:

> Get a long enough one and you're top roping :-)
>
> Truly mind-boggling.

If your mind boggles at the fact that some people do things differently to you, you must find life very confusing...
Jonny2vests - on 04 Dec 2012
In reply to Ian Patterson:
> (In reply to davo)
> [...]
> There isn't really much competion in the end.

No, which is a shame. I'm with Davo on this one, the longevity and quality of the Beta Stick is not great. I think a good quality clip stick wouldn't be much harder to make and I'd be happy to pay a reasonable price for it.
winhill - on 04 Dec 2012
In reply to El3ctroFuzz:
> (In reply to davo)
>
> What do you mean there isnt much competition.
>
> http://www.freeimagehosting.net/44qx5
>
> This Cost me 20 for the pole, and 2 hours work for figuring out the design and bending coat hanger into place. It will take even less time if u copy this or other designs online..

Which pole did you use?

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