UKC

How do lightweight B3s compare to the bombproof versions?

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 mmmhumous 13 Jan 2022

I’m in the market for a pair of new B3s, and wondered how do the lighter weight offerings from Scapa and La Sportiva (or other manufactures) measure up versus the Nepals and Mont Blancs? 

I’ll be using them for Scottish winter (up to VI), water ice (up to WI5) and summer alpine (Up to D), so don’t need anything for high altitude. I like the look of the Phantom Techs, Trango Ice Cube GTXs, Trango Tower Extreeme GTXs and G5s, or more accurately, like like half kilo of weight saving these offer. 

Fit will be the ultimate decider, but wondered if anyone had had any issues with any of the light weight options that are worth bearing in mind. Particularly any issues related to

  • Durability
  • Abrasion resistance [READ: ability to withstand me being a numpty and kicking myself with a front-point]
  • Crampon compatibility (I’m using Grivel G12s or Rambos IVs).
 DaveHK 13 Jan 2022
In reply to mmmhumous:

I've got Phantom Tech and Nepal Evo GTX and although there's nothing wrong with the Nepals and I was happy with them for years the Phantoms feel like a massive improvement. Lighter, neater, more nimble and more comfortable. Can't really comment on durability but after a season and a half there are no concerns.

In reply to mmmhumous:

I have a 2015 pair of Trango Extremes, and they're bombproof. I cut through a teeny bit of the rubber top bit with some crampon stupidity, but not a functional issue and also easily fixed. Six years of admittedly sporadic use, and still going strong. I don't expect them to fall apart any time soon, but they do predate the current generation of really lightweight boots.

Generally speaking, I feel what you gain in having to slog around with the thing attached to the end of your leg more than makes up for any mils reduction in durability. Losing 1+kg from your boots is a serious saving when you're taking them up big slopes and high pointy bits.

 Jeff Ingman 04:11 Fri
In reply to mmmhumous:

Hi Adam

I've been using the Trango ice cubes since late 2015. When they first arrived I thought that I'd made a terrible mistake buying something so light but they are still going strong seven yrs on. I've used them extensively in Scotland (mostly snowy conditions) Euro ice cragging (down to -15c) and a bit of alpine (Dent Blanche in summer). They have worked well with grivel G20's and Rambo 4's.

If I were to replace them I'd look at the Dolomite miage peak and check the fit - but they are heavier than the Trango ice cube and that change would be in the wrong direction IMO. Light is right.

Hope to see you at the crag of dreams soon.....Jeff

 mmmhumous 19:14 Sat
In reply to mmmhumous:

Thanks all, just picked up a pair of Phantom Techs so will see how they do on durability.

 mmmhumous 19:16 Sat
In reply to Jeff Ingman:

> Hope to see you at the crag of dreams soon.....Jeff

Absolutely, we were down there today trying to finish bolting the back passage.  


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