/ La Sportiva Katanas

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La_Vie_En_Rose on 18 Feb 2013
Not sure where the best place to post this is, but I thought I'd try here.

I bought brand new La Sportiva Katanas in November, used them a couple of times indoors before Christmas and once outdoors on sandstone. Since January, I've climbed about twice a week for a couple of hours each session, but I wouldn't say it's been particularly intensive (I consistently climb 6Bs and the odd 6B+).

Anyway, the other day I noticed a small (about 1mm) perfectly circular hole on the seam just below the toe. I've worn through toes in the past and they've always appeared much higher up, i.e. more directly over my big toe as opposed to on the seam. Has anyone had this happen to them with such a new pair of shoes or is it just my appalling technique?

I've brought them back to the shop where I bought them and they've sent them off to La Sportiva for an "investigation", but either way I'm not too impressed to have this happen so soon to a £100 pair of shoes.

Another interesting thing to note is that I've spoken to people who love using them for smearing. I've found them to be positively rubbish at smearing compared to my last shoes (plain old Evolvs) and I was wondering if it's possibly some sort of defect in the rubber?

I'd be grateful for your thoughts as poor students don't like throwing £100 down the drain!

Skyfall - on 18 Feb 2013
In reply to Zumoid:

I've had a series of katanas over the years.

I have never had the toe blow so fast as you describe but they are a bit prone to the toe rubber splitting apart at the seam (and I don't wear them ridiculously tight). There does seem to be some sort of an issue with them.

As for smearing, I have found them ok once they have softened up - at which point they do become quite slipper like. For about 5 years they were my favorite shoes to climb in - particularly in warm weather as they breathe well. I've taken a break for a while though, back to 5-10's.
Gwain - on 18 Feb 2013
In reply to Zumoid: I had similar with a pair a couple of years ago. Climbed indoors twice, went on a 3 day trip to Spain and a couple more sessions on the wall meant they were worn out. Sent them back and was told it was normal wear and tear.Had them resoled and the problem went away.
Styx - on 18 Feb 2013
That's not normal, no. It sounds like a defect (delamination rather than wear).

My Miura's usually take longer than that to soften up so I'd expect the same with the Katana's really.
Jon Stewart - on 18 Feb 2013
In reply to Zumoid:

I had a pair of Katanas fall apart prematurely. Didn't buy'em again.

Evolvs also fall apart without too much persuasion, but as you say their soft rubber makes the not-too-pointy ones excellent for smearing.
valjean - on 19 Feb 2013
In reply to Zumoid:
i own 2 pairs.
both have held up
1 pair has been resoled once
the other pair has been resoled twice

i do not recall any issues with the original rubber on them... they are pretty pointy shoes so i do find i wear down the rubber on the tip of the toe significantly faster than other parts of it.

ive caught the rand rubber on indoor holds before and caused it to separate from the leather a bit, but nothing major

i find smearing with them ok

kilian fischhuber has won how many WC events using them? so its definitely not the shoe that is preventing me from climbing harder. my weak fingers and rubbish technique is likely the culprit.

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