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Head/pick movement on petzl ergo or nomic
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By Dobson
From Butte, MT
Apr 18, 2013

The X-Dreams are definitely great tools, and the picks work pretty well right out of the box. Comparing the stock geometry of picks doesn't give much insight into the materials and capabilites of an ice tool. Stock geometry is just a function of the designer's personal opinions/needs, and the manufacturing limitations.

You need to optimize the geometry of each pick for your own personal climbing style. It is easy to regrind a Petzl pick into a form that handily outperforms the stock Cassin pick. I haven't had enough time with Cassin tools to properly evaluate what their picks might be capable of.

There's no way that any ice tool manufacturer is using an interesting exclusive alloy. Not possible at this price point. This means that every company has access to the same selection of alloys. Where constituent ores are mined is absolutely irrelevant. It all gets shipped to China (or somewhere else with low environmental standards) for smelting before going to a foundry. (As an aside, I personally think the best European steel is made at the Bohler facility in Austria.)

Pick your equipment based on what actually works for you in real life. Unsubstantiated theories about materials and workmanship just adds to the confusion.


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By Ben Brotelho
From Albany, NY
Apr 18, 2013
Epic free solo with a pack on

Kirby1013 wrote:
Seriously, I should have known that typing something like that would get ridiculed on Mountain Project. I mean what the hell are we doing on here anyway? Hahaha. Like Dobson said you can't test so there's no facts. I just repeated something I heard. That the steel for the Cassin picks is mined out of Italy. The town's known for it's metalworking and superior steel. I feel it's true because of the fact that the X ice pick is much narrower than the Petzl's picks. I figure if something's stronger than you can use less of it to achieve the set goal. You should try a pair of X Dreams Ben. I get up to the Adirondacks alot so maybe I could lend you my pair to check out. I was in your shoes all last season. I loved my Nomics and defended them to the death! I tried every tool on the market as I hire guides and attend as many Ice Fests as I can. I still always went back to my Nomics. I hired Ian Osteyee for a week towards the end of the season. I told him I was just looking for a partner but as always let me know if I should change to be a better climber. The first thing he said was get rid of the Nomics. I replied the same way you did to my posts here. He simply told me take one of Nomics and a X Dream for a lap. It was clear as glass the X Dream outperforms the Nomic. We should meet up and try it if you don't believe me. I implore you! just kidding.. Ian tweaked my techinque and let use a pair of X Dreams the rest of the week. By the end of the trip I felt comfortable on any 4. I could place screws, I never had to shake my hands out and I never fought with the X Dreams to get them in or out of the ice. I could run up a 4 even if I was dead tried. I don't have any facts about the steel but it's a fact if you try the Cassin X Dreams set up like I said you'll say the same thing I do. In the meantime have you ever detuned your picks? It's easy to do but easy to trash your picks if you do it wrong. Ask my buddy, Mike. Haha I could post up you some pictures and a description if you like. I'm sure people here would back me up (or trash me haha) to give you a piece of mind. OK, not serious.. You can't use your potty mouth while playing scrabble. Your reply made me laugh! Good use of vocabulary.


I will take you up on this offer next season...sadly I think my season for ice has come to a close. Maybe I'll see you on Lake George this summer sometime! Maybe we could get a scrabble game going on top of Roger's Rock...that'd be amazing.


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By Bill Kirby
From Baltimore Maryland
Apr 18, 2013
Me eating a cliff bar walking back from Frankenstein Amphitheater

Dobson. I pretty sure there's lots of people on Mountain Project that write what they've heard true or false. I find your post educational and interesting but I never stated any of it was fact when asked. Your post makes sense and understand that all picks have the same strength. I won't argue with you there but I will when it comes to what tool performs best on ice.

Furthermore I asked anyone who thought X Dreams were inferior to their tools to take a lap. I know first hand if you detune Petzl picks they work much better than stock picks. You still end up swinging the Nomics much more than the X Dreams over the course of a pitch of ice.

Ben, How about we motor down to my in laws and play scrabble at the end of the day... unless you carry it up little finger.

Next winter, there's always next winter.


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By Z.St.Jules
From New Hampshire
Apr 30, 2014

Any update on this? Just noticed my Ergo's doing the same thing.


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