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Worst harness ever.
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Jul 22, 2013
What would you vote for? GhaMby
From Heaven
Joined Oct 2, 2006
427 points
Jul 22, 2013
well there are the $$$$ dead birds that have had major lower tie in point wear issues .... i dont think ive heard of any other harness in recent memory that had these issues by multiple folks ... even el cheapo ones ...

sad cause the old dead birds are durable as hell ... my gym still uses em

;)
bearbreeder
Joined Mar 1, 2009
2,053 points
Jul 22, 2013
OTL
I'm still on my first one... so its the best, worst, most/least durable, etc, harness I've ever owned. Matt N
From Santa Barbara, CA
Joined Oct 20, 2010
345 points
Administrator
Jul 22, 2013
skitch wrote:
What would you vote for?

REI Onsight. Bought it in something like 2001. It is pretty much just a length of 2" webbing sewn into a harness. It has absolutely no padding anywhere.
20 kN
From Hawaii
Joined Feb 2, 2009
665 points
Jul 22, 2013
Kind of an interesting question. A buddy of mine who was one of the best free climbers in Yosemite Valley in the late 70's and early 80's shows up the local climbing gym with the harness he used on all his hard climbs and the gym won't let him wear it. He has to rent one of their harnesses to climb. Bruce Hildenbrand
Joined Apr 18, 2003
828 points
Jul 22, 2013
johnnyrig wrote:
Isn't lack of padding just incentive not to fall? Got a Troll harness in a lot off ebay. Tried it on. Took it off immediately. How did anyone ever climb in those?


Was that the Whillans design with a single strap straight up the front/middle to crush a climber's nuts if he fell? definitely gave the guys a motive not to fall.
mark felber
From Wheat Ridge, CO
Joined Jul 30, 2005
65 points
Administrator
Jul 22, 2013
Bruce Hildenbrand wrote:
Kind of an interesting question. A buddy of mine who was one of the best free climbers in Yosemite Valley in the late 70's and early 80's shows up the local climbing gym with the harness he used on all his hard climbs and the gym won't let him wear it. He has to rent one of their harnesses to climb.

Well, if his harness is 43 years old I think the gym is well off on that decision.
20 kN
From Hawaii
Joined Feb 2, 2009
665 points
Jul 22, 2013
the man was smart
Bruce Hildenbrand wrote:
Kind of an interesting question. A buddy of mine who was one of the best free climbers in Yosemite Valley in the late 70's and early 80's shows up the local climbing gym with the harness he used on all his hard climbs and the gym won't let him wear it. He has to rent one of their harnesses to climb.


20 kN wrote:
Well, if his harness is 43 years old I think the gym is well off on that decision.


I'm with you on that, I doubt the gym cared much when he told them who he was and what he had done in that harness.

Speaking of dropping names halfway, who was it Bruce?
T Roper
From VA,NM,UT,CT,MA
Joined Mar 31, 2006
1,056 points
Jul 22, 2013
20 kN wrote:
REI Onsight. Bought it in something like 2001. It is pretty much just a length of 2" webbing sewn into a harness. It has absolutely no padding anywhere.


I have one too, it's literally just webbing.
MHLeitch
Joined Mar 24, 2013
30 points
Jul 22, 2013
T Howes
From Sisters, OR
Joined Dec 13, 2010
12 points
Jul 22, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
mark felber wrote:
Was that the Whillans design with a single strap straight up the front/middle to crush a climber's nuts if he fell? definitely gave the guys a motive not to fall.


Yup,,was going to offer up this harness for the most painful nut jerker of all time. But women seemed to love it!/;-) Whillans harness was my only harness from the early 70's,,a must to have instead of the 2 inch wide swami wrapped around the waist that many climbers were still going with.
Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,091 points
Jul 22, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
T Howes wrote:


I saw these 200 dollar pants /harness and thought it was kinda novel idea. But how do you drop trousers for a crap on mid route big walls. OH, I know, it's a one pitch sporty harness only. And I'm guessing it doesn't fit too well when your waistline changes even by an inch.
Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,091 points
Jul 22, 2013
I would have to say that my Metolius Safetech is the most uncomfortable harness I've had, but I've only owned 4 other harnesses, the Arcteryx Vapor being the most comfy, but I bought it on sale when the new POS's started coming out!

I think I'm going to buy a Wild Country Syncro, or at least try one on.
GhaMby
From Heaven
Joined Oct 2, 2006
427 points
Jul 22, 2013
Obi Wan Ryobi - Darth Vader Crag, Rumney NH
20 kN wrote:
REI Onsight. Bought it in something like 2001. It is pretty much just a length of 2" webbing sewn into a harness. It has absolutely no padding anywhere.


I've always just called them seat belts ;)
Brendan Blanchard
From Boulder, CO
Joined Oct 18, 2010
310 points
Jul 22, 2013
skitch wrote:
I would have to say that my Metolius Safetech is the most uncomfortable harness I've had, but I've only owned 4 other harnesses, the Arcteryx Vapor being the most comfy, but I bought it on sale when the new POS's started coming out! I think I'm going to buy a Wild Country Syncro, or at least try one on.


The Synchro isn't the most comfortable. The waist is nice but the leg straps kind of dig. It's got a ton of gear loops, which is awesome, but my Metolius whatever the hell that I got as part of a package with a chalk bag and belay device is way comfier.
Greg Pouliot
Joined Jul 23, 2012
7 points
Jul 22, 2013
Jose Cuervo Fruitcups dirtbag style
Alpine Bod - there are plenty of full-feature harnesses on the market today that are way lighter and less bulkier than this classic stripped-down version. The only thing it's good for is climbing off-widths. doligo
Joined Sep 26, 2008
408 points
Jul 22, 2013
Bowline on a coil mountainhick
From Black Hawk, CO
Joined Mar 19, 2009
217 points
Jul 22, 2013
I've found that most people who trash the Whillans harness haven't actually used it and are are reacting to the horrifying looking "crutch" strap as it was called. I climbed and guided in one for years and took several 50-footers in it with no problems. The only time it would catch my junk was when I was leaning back slowly as in the start of a rappel, something that current harness still do on occasion. Both of my children were conceived after my 5 year stint with the Whillans.

It was much more comfortable than the diaper-style harnesses available at the time and the leg-loop harness were beastly affairs more suitable for rescues and big walls. It wasn't until Tom Jones started up J-Rat that swami-leg loop style harnesses began to get comfortable.
Malcolm Daly
From Boulder, CO
Joined Jan 1, 2001
440 points
Jul 22, 2013
doligo wrote:
Alpine Bod - there are plenty of full-feature harnesses on the market today that are way lighter and less bulkier than this classic stripped-down version. The only thing it's good for is climbing off-widths.


They are pretty popular for canyoneering.
T Howes
From Sisters, OR
Joined Dec 13, 2010
12 points
Jul 22, 2013
My dogs got ups yo!
Arc'teryx harnesses. Before these lightweight POS's came out I only replaced my harness every couple of years because I outgrew them. The first Arc'teryx I got was around $125 (nearly double what harnesses were going for at the time) and it lasted less than three months before the tie-in point busted. I've bought one more since then, but ONLY because I found them on The Clymb for less than $40 and I had a couple of coupons so I ended up paying around $25. That one busted in the same spot, but since I got about 12 months’ worth of climbing out of it I didn't care. This was only because I duct taped the bottom tie-in point as soon as I got it. I love how the harness fits and compacts down into the size of a tuna can, but if you’re going to pay that much money Arc’teryx should get with the times and include a guard similar to the new Mammut harness that protects the bottom tie-in point. jarthur
From Westminster, CO
Joined Mar 23, 2008
322 points
Jul 22, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
Brendan Blanchard wrote:
I've always just called them seat belts ;)


Not sure of the name before, but REI had a seatbelt sewn up harness for 19.95 as their basic toprope intro harness for decades back since the late 70's. wonder if it is now the same model today.
Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,091 points
Jul 22, 2013
i really enjoyed this drive to the tetons... can't...
jarthur wrote:
Arc'teryx harnesses. Before these lightweight POS's came out I only replaced my harness every couple of years because I outgrew them. The first Arc'teryx I got was around $125 (nearly double what harnesses were going for at the time) and it lasted less than three months before the tie-in point busted. I've bought one more since then, but ONLY because I found them on The Clymb for less than $40 and I had a couple of coupons so I ended up paying around $25. That one busted in the same spot, but since I got about 12 months’ worth of climbing out of it I didn't care. This was only because I duct taped the bottom tie-in point as soon as I got it. I love how the harness fits and compacts down into the size of a tuna can, but if you’re going to pay that much money Arc’teryx should get with the times and include a guard similar to the new Mammut harness that protects the bottom tie-in point.


YES!
dirtbag
From Bellingham, WA
Joined Feb 4, 2007
143 points
Jul 22, 2013
My first climbing experiences were in a Swiss seat tied with 1" webbing. I think that's my vote for the worst harness I've ever worn, although supposedly the Army ties them with cord instead of flat webbing... ouch! Allen Corneau
From Houston, TX
Joined May 6, 2008
91 points
Jul 22, 2013
did I just get lucky with my arcteryx harness? I've been climbing on it for a season now and it shows zero sign of wear. knock I wood I guess Rob D.
From Brooklyn, NY
Joined May 18, 2011
37 points
Jul 22, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
Allen Corneau wrote:
My first climbing experiences were in a Swiss seat tied with 1" webbing. I think that's my vote for the worst harness I've ever worn, although supposedly the Army ties them with cord instead of flat webbing... ouch!


Oh yes, the 'diaper harness' of one inch webbing strapped around and hooked in front with a carabiner was my actual first harness besides a rope coil tie in. It slipped down the legs and the 'biner knocked at your nuts or navel all the time. awful.
Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,091 points
Jul 22, 2013
Rob Davis wrote:
did I just get lucky with my arcteryx harness? I've been climbing on it for a season now and it shows zero sign of wear. knock I wood I guess


how often do you use it ...

most people i know who have them wear out climb 4+ days a week outside in season and in the gym year round ...

now one can say thats wear and tear ... which honestly does happen ... however their partners climb with all other types of harnesses the same amount and level .... and theyre usually fine

ive met some people whose dead birds are fine ... when i ask em how much they climb, its not that much ...

on MP alone theres enough threads/posts from different MPers about dead bird harness durability issues ... more than any other brand or type

for a "top of the line" harness, the most expensive one out there ... one expects MUCH more ... what are you paying for???

now the old dead bird vapor harnesses ... those are still used in the gym and keep going strong despite being used every day by screaming newbs


;)
bearbreeder
Joined Mar 1, 2009
2,053 points


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