UKC

BD C4 vs C4 Ultralight

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Just a straw pole, if you were in the market for a new set of cams, and you decided you liked either of the two above cams, which would you choose and why? I mean the ULs are much lighter but much more expensive. Does anyone climb with the UL's as their daily rack, or do you save them for "best" when you are digging deep? Would you prefer to go with the standard C4 because of durability?

In reply to beardy mike:

I guess if cost was really no problem I'd get the ultralights. Re wear and tear you could argue they wont last as long but I suspect the exposed sewn sling will wear out much faster than the dyneema stem.

if I was falling on them really regularly then maybe I'd get the classic c4's for peace of mind. 

or get totems

 rogerwebb 10:38 Fri
In reply to beardy mike:

I just replaced my 15 year old set up to the blue size with standard. (weighing up the cost of sending them off for resling against a good offer on a set made it an easy decision) The weight saving is significant and seems considerably more than the advertised 10%.

Having said that I just replaced my size 4 with an ultralight the difference is even more impressive. However I doubt it would be so significant in the smaller sizes. Personally I use the smaller sizes more often so even if I had the cash I would still go for standard as they will withstand the abuse better (I think). 

(Unless off for some lifetime ambition that was far far away in which case I would thole the cost for the possibly crucial gain)

Paul may well be right about the sling wearing out before the dymeena but we won't really know for a while. If he is then my comments above are incorrect. 

 whenry 11:01 Fri
In reply to beardy mike:

I bought a standard C4 size 4 rather than the ultralight a couple of years ago. I concluded that if the additional weight was going to make a difference, I'd be better off losing a few pounds, and that I wasn't climbing hard enough for weight to be the deciding factor - so I might as well get something more durable.

If I was going to replace my current set, I'd still go with standard C4s because of the durability. If I was climbing E8/9 instead of E3 my answer might be different though.

In reply to beardy mike:

I don't really consider the weight to be an issue when I'm trad climbing, I don't think a full double rack would make much more than 1kg difference would it?

Recently I've got pretty obsessed with saving weight on alpine climbs with long approaches though, and I have toyed with the idea of getting a few ultralights for this. I have bigger savings to be made first on ice screws I think.

Edit: it's even less significant than I thought. Silver-Yellow C4 is 543g in total, in Ultralight is 451g. So less than 100g of difference.

Post edited at 11:39
 neuromancer 12:46 Fri
In reply to beardy mike:

Totems up to gold, gold and blue C4 UL, then regular C4 grey and above for the trigger keepers. 

 HeMa 12:54 Fri
In reply to beardy mike:

For the basic set, I’d get the cheaper (heavier and prolly also a tad more durable) standard C4s. For dublicates (or triples) those could possibly be the ULs.

but to be honest, I’d rather get some different brands as doubles/triples, especially sub 0.75 sizess for a bit more varience in sizes.

 PaulJepson 13:18 Fri
In reply to beardy mike:

Personally I would (and have) go(ne) standard.

I can rest happy in the knowledge that when the slings are fuzzy, faded and battered and my confidence in them is waning, I can post them off to Utah and they will come back as bomber as they were when I bought them for the cost of around £20. If instead of a fat steel cable, I was wondering about how worn the dyneema was, I would be a bit less happy. 

In reply to beardy mike:

I recently replaced my cams. I went for totems and a blue ultralight.

Some are concerned about the dyneema stem being less durable than the steel in the normal c4s. To damage this, one would have to wear through the pvc shield first, whilst this is possible, I have never seen or heard of it happening. 

 PaulJepson 17:11 Fri
In reply to Presley Whippet:

Dyneema does wear out without necessarily needing to be abraded. It's actually worse than nylon for it, I think (i.e. if you bend or load a dyneema cord in the same place then it weakens over time moreso than the equivalent nylon would). 

 steve_gibbs 17:18 Fri
In reply to beardy mike:

I’ve got a set of DMM Dragon II and a set of BD Ultralights. The Ultralights sure don’t like sea cliffs, as I found the axels rusting up within a week of use down in Cornwall! Think I’m not the first to mention that on here.

It’s weight vs durability. I use the Dragon II’s for day-to-day climbing, but if I’m doubling up on cams on a long route, then I add in some Ultralights.

In the Alps I’m Ultralights all the way. You really notice the weight difference for those loooong walk-ins! 

If you fancy big grey (size 4), get the normal BD Camalot, as the retractable trigger is worth gold to stop it constantly poking you in the thigh.

In reply to beardy mike:

Thanks guys, you more or less confirmed what I was already thinking...


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