/ Crampon advice
G14 and G12 have similar length points (both a bit short compared with most other crampons IMO, although this depends on the fitting and boot combination).
I think G12 are a more rounded crampon and if I was only getting one crampon for everything (climbing, walking, summer alpine etc) I'd get a mountaineering style crampon like this. They do pretty much everything well except fairly hard mixed where monos are better. Some very good ice climbers even prefer these type of crampons on ice.
They will certainly perform better for walking in and on snow climbs and you won't need to consider any other crampons on ice until leading at least grade V, although on mixed you may JUST start noticing the advantage of monos about tech 4.
Like I said I would consider crampons with slightly longer front points my self though like the sabretooths (depending on the fitting and boots they are paired with). I'd personally opt for the newmatic fitting over the crampomatic fitting.
The main advantage of this is the vertical front points go into ice a little better, and thin cracks on mixed stuff. However, this means they tend to 'slice' through snow a little - think of pushing down a butter knife through the snow pack. They're not that bad, but that's the best way I could think of the explain the principle.
Conversely, the horizontal front points of the G12 don't go into ice as well (this is all relative) as the G14, and won't necessarily fit in a narrow mixed crack. However, they are a bit more resistant to the slicing mentioned above - think back of a spoon on the snowpack (again, slight exaggeration but an accessible analogy.
As with binging, its down to personal preference - I prefer the crampomatic binging (G14 and Sportiva Baturas) as I find this the push the front points further out from the boot. Depends on our boot/crampon combo and preference (security, feel etc.) though.
Hope this is of some help!
To answer your question I'd say Yes, G14s will be overkill for what you're doing. G12s are brilliant crampons and will handle anything you can throw at them!
> you won't need to consider any other crampons on ice until leading at least grade V, although on mixed you may JUST start noticing the advantage of monos about tech 4.
I'd say more like tech 6 (and even then only on certain routes) but fully agree in general.
Had both and G12's are better for what you are after. They will comfortably get you up to grade 4.
The advantage of G14's, sorry may be repeating what has already been said, is that they can be used in mono or dual point mode. Mono is good for harder mixed stuff and really hard water ice for some people. The vertical front points on the G14's are far better if climbing hard water ice like on the continent (or Scotland this winter ;)) but are less secure on steep snow (such as Grade I/ II gullies) as the points can rip through. The G12's are better for this.
The vertical front points on the G14's are far better if climbing hard water ice like on the continent (or Scotland this winter ;)"
Well there is plenty of very experienced people including will gadd that disagree with you http://coldthistle.blogspot.co.uk/2010/02/these-freakn-pons.html
Didn't read the article, but yes I accept Will Gadd is slightly more knowledgeable on the subject than me!
However, I found the horizontal points didn't give the penetration and only went in a little, so you ended up having to blooter the ice to get a good placement. Can be really painful on the toes on longer routes.
With vertical point I found better penetration
Will take a wee read of the article when I have a bit more time.
my g14 crampomatic had poor front point protrusion and i only used the sabretooths a couple of times on steep water ice, i have multiple crampons now and would personally choose my adapted dual g14 (with rambo bails) or rambos for most steeper ice climbs now, but thats mostly a fashion thing, my sabretooths function great on water ice and climb harder than i do. I think one of the key points is horizontal points perform well enough over a wide range of climbing mediums for most winter / alipine use and are also more relieable over a wide range of conditions from powder to neve and hard water ice to slush, especially for novice to intermidiate use this performance is key imo.
> The vertical front points on the G14's are far better if climbing hard water ice
Obviously there will be exceptions but I think many will agree here. When on snow ice or cruddy stuff horizontal points will be as good or better.
I find that with most grivel crampons (G12,G14,Rambo etc) the fit of the crampomatic binding changes with use. The arms on the bail bar gradually bend more towards the back of the boot, also as the boot wears down it moves forward in the crampon. This means that over time the front point protrusion on my crampomatic g14s gets poorer and poorer (yes the points get worn but not excessively so and new points doesn't fix the issue). The advantages to newmatic fitting are not only that it's easier to put on, but the front point protrusion remains much more static. I also think if the crampon fits the boot well that its a more solid fitting (if the crampon stays on the boot when lifted without doing up the straps) as it cant move. The bail bars always have some play in them.