In reply to BnB: If you know the limitations then a link cam can be useful on a winter rack otherwise I think you'll find yourself looking at double axle designs - dragons or camalots, move range per given unit so at a pinch you'd get away with 2 rather than 3 sizes
In reply to BnB:
It is winter climbing, stuff gets hammered, scraped and frozen. I'd go for something simple and robust rather than light and mechanically fancy. I'd probably be looking at cheap clones of the old wild country technical friend.
In reply to BnB: The 'value for money option' is probably to buy some Wild Country Technical Friends second-hand in good condition. The Tech Friend design with its plastic re-enforced stem is massively robust and durable. I'd go for sizes 1.5, 2.5 & 3.5 which might cost you £60-£70.
If you have more money available or want to buy new, the obvious choices would be Black Diamond C4 Camalots or DMM Dragons but their doubled sling is less useful in Winter being fiddly to handle wearing gloves. In Camalots you could probably get away with only sizes 1 & 3 as they overlap slightly. Other options would be sizes 0.5,1,3 or 1,2,3 depending whether you want coverage for smaller cracks or additional coverage for medium/large ones. The equivalent sizes in DMM Dragon cams would be 3&5 or 1,3,5 or 3,4,5 respectively.
Finally, the 'lightweight' option, should weight be a primary consideration would be Metolius UL (Ultralight) Powercams as they are currently the lightest on the market.
In reply to BnB:
On the grades your looking for I think tricams would be a good investment, very good bang for the buck and also lightweight and can be taken instead of a nut in the same passive placement size. Also work better on frosted rock than normal cams.
I used a DMM dragon cam for the first time in Welsh winter last week and was impressed. I didn't find them fiddly with gloves compared to the older DMM ones I've got and they cover a greater range for each size. I'd never be out now with at least a size 2 dragon cam (1 and 3 if I feel like going full monty).
To be honest I would stick with the torque nuts that you have at the minute, even for low grade summer stuff. They are much lighter than the cams for their size and when winter does come around you can hammer them home without worryingt about damage. Not to mention cams are less secure in icey/rimmed up cracks.
> They are much lighter than the cams for their size
That is only true for Torque Nuts sizes 1-3.
It is not the case for the Torque Nut size 4 (range 54-72.2mm) which weighs 146g. A Metolius Powercam size 8 with a comparable, but wider, size range (full range 48.7-77.4mm, optimum range 49.0-71.1mm) weighs almost the same at 150g.
I currently only own Torque Nuts sizes 1-3 as I think the size 4 is both less useful than the smaller sizes and, as mentioned above, offers little weight saving over carrying a similarly sized cam.
@Cameron, yes we made it home safely. Next outing is on Thursday to North Wales for a day on the Glyderau eidges or Carneddau gullies, depending on conditions. How was Neist Point?
@The Ex-Engineer, I agree the size 4 TN is pretty hefty at nearly 150g. Often that one gets left behind since if the holes are that big I can usually get a sling round something. Cameron will tell you my nut placements leave much to be desired!!