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What brand of rubber do you prefer?


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NC Rock Climber · · The Oven, AKA Phoenix · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 60

I have been using Yosemite Bum and Trax Rubber since 2005. I have been happy with it, but am considering trying Onyx or Stealth on this round of resoles and letting Locker do the work.

I would appreciate hearing what others are using these days and your experience with different brands of rubber.

Meme Guy · · Land of Runout Slab · Joined Sep 2013 · Points: 325
NC Rock Climber · · The Oven, AKA Phoenix · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 60

I knew that was coming. (no pun intended!)

So, Meme Guy, help a brother out. What do you prefer? I know that you are a slab master and would appreciate your input.

S. Neoh · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2009 · Points: 10

For me, C4 and XS Grip 2 for indoors. I found Oynxx a bit too hard for indoors. For outdoors, Grip, Grip 2 and C4 are all great but wears a little too quickly for my liking. XS Edge and Oynxx are good too outdoors but not as sticky as C4 or Grip 2. Then there is the thickness/sensitivity angle. For some, that makes as much difference as "raw stickiness".
Hope this helps.

Meme Guy · · Land of Runout Slab · Joined Sep 2013 · Points: 325
NC Rock Climber wrote:I knew that was coming. (no pun intended!) So, Meme Guy, help a brother out. What do you prefer? I know that you are a slab master and would appreciate your input.
Hahhh!

I really like the stealth C4, but the onyx is pretty damn good too.
NC Rock Climber · · The Oven, AKA Phoenix · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 60

Cool. Thanks for the info. I'm going to put this on my Miuras, which I wear tight for steep sport climbing.

jim.dangle · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 4,557

Partly depends on what you want it for. Stealth C4 is probably the stickiest but it also feels like the softest and tends to wear out fast. I would get different rubber for some uses.

Locker did a pair of shoes for me with C4 and did a great job. I definitely recommend him.

Jim

Woodchuck ATC · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 3,110

This is a trick question, isn't it? What if you've had a 'shoe vasectomy'..so to speak..

Thierry · · Pocatello, ID · Joined Jul 2007 · Points: 0

It depends! What's the temperature when you climb?
Epoxy-rubber has certain temperature characteristics that makes the rubber more or less 'sticky'.
I've found that Onyx (I think that's what I've got on one pair) doesn't do well in cold temps (below 45F). C4 seems to do better in that range.

Does anybody have a chart of the different rubbers with their optimum performance temperatures?

JohnWesely · · Red River Gorge · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 595

Am I the only one who doesn't feel that there is an appreciable difference between rubbers?

michaeltarne · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2011 · Points: 130
JohnWesely wrote:Am I the only one who doesn't feel that there is an appreciable difference between rubbers?
I would agree with you except for XS Edge. I hate it on my TC Pros on everything except granite. It feels like it just doesn't stick on sandstone.
GhaMby Eagan · · Heaven · Joined Oct 2006 · Points: 385
michaeltarne wrote: I would agree with you except for XS Edge. I hate it on my TC Pros on everything except granite. It feels like it just doesn't stick on sandstone.
Doesn't seem to stick on the Tuff in the Owen's river gorge, at least not for me, I do see a lot of crushers using them down there though. Guess it'll just make you stronger!

Whatever is being used on Tenaya shoes works well for me.
reboot · · . · Joined Jul 2006 · Points: 125

Harder routes of the same angle on textured rock (i.e., not limestone) typically have smaller footholds, which would require stiffer sole/harder rubber to stand on. It's not just a performance vs durability trade-off.

The rubbers that are generally available for resole rank from softest to hardest at room temp:
Trax, (C4, Grip), Grip 2, Onyx, Edge. The Stealth rubbers soften faster than others with increased temps, while the Edge is significantly harder than all other rubbers.

Alicia Sokolowski · · Brooklyn, NY · Joined Aug 2010 · Points: 1,095

Stealth C4 for me. I feel like it does great in the colder temps, which are part of being of NE climber.

Curt Shannon · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2006 · Points: 5

C4 is the best all around rubber that I've found and I just had some TC Pros resoled with it. I have found Onyx to be inconsistent.

Curt

Locker · · Yucca Valley, CA · Joined Oct 2002 · Points: 2,269

Two best rubbers currently available to resolers.

Stealth C4 and Onyx. Both made by FiveTen.

C4 is the stickiest of all the rubbers. Has a couple drawbacks. In the warmer months can "Give" and rubber wears faster than many of the others. Overall it is BY FAR the rubber of choice. Best rubber for "Friction/smearing"

Onyx wears longer, is a little stiffer, can feel better in the warmer months for some, and is the preferred rubber (C4 vs. Onyx)for "Edging". Some disadvantages are edges can "chunk", isn't the best for "Smearing", performs worse in cooler temps.

Vibram also makes many good and available rubber for resolers. XSV is great stuff! Great for JTree in the warmer months!

Vibram XS Grip is another good choice as an "All around" rubber.

Best rubber to use in the gym is C4.

For those that may not know. Not all rubber on the different climbing shoes is available for resoling. That of course means you are forced to choose a different rubber, than what the shoes originally came with.

NC Rock Climber · · The Oven, AKA Phoenix · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 60

Thanks for all the input! I am going to go with C4. I'll post up at some point and let you know if my fat, weak ass can tell the difference between C4 and Evolv Trax.

Locker, I'll shoot you an e-mail. I am headed out to Jtree tomorrow, and if it works for you I will send my shoes to you next week after I return.

reboot · · . · Joined Jul 2006 · Points: 125
Locker wrote:Overall it is BY FAR the rubber of choice...Best rubber to use in the gym is C4.
Coincidence? Not that many of my climbing partners use C4, but not many of them use Five Ten shoes either.

I think if your sending temp is 40F or colder, C4 is an excellent choice; I prefer warmer temps. And since I don't climb in Five Tens, by resole time, I like something slightly harder than what the shoes came with to compensate for the softened soles.
S. Neoh · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2009 · Points: 10

Tenaya shoes usually have Grip 2, like some Scarpa shoes and some Sportiva women's. It is a great rubber but I was told it is not available to resolers. Resolers use Grip.
The resole I had done with Oynxx came back with 5mm rubber which felt clunky to me.
My Katana Lace came with XS Edge out of the box which felt inferior to C4 overall except when it came to sharp, thin edging in July and August. When hot, C4 did not feel like it could hold its edge whereas the XS Edge felt solid.
I've never experienced anything better than C4 on slimey, overchalked gym holds.

reboot · · . · Joined Jul 2006 · Points: 125
S. Neoh wrote:Tenaya shoes usually have Grip 2, like some Scarpa shoes and some Sportiva women's. It is a great rubber but I was told it is not available to resolers. Resolers use Grip.
Rock & Resole finally had Grip 2 for resole last time I was there (Oct '13), after few years of telling me Sportiva wouldn't import the rubber. They ran out of the original Grip years ago. If resolers still have them, I assume they are remnants of old stock.

With the rubber sheets in hand, Grip 2 flexed less than C4, but is quite a bit softer than Onyx or Edge.

The more sport/bouldering oriented Sportiva shoes, use Grip 2 (testarossa, solution, futura, python, cobra, etc), some additional women' models also use Grip 2, presumably because women weigh less & wouldn't deform a soft rubber as much.

S. Neoh wrote:The resole I had done with Oynxx came back with 5mm rubber which felt clunky to me.
I was told Onyxx is only available to resolers as a single thickness (4.2mm), same with Grip 2 (4mm). The other rubber I've used (Grip, XSV, Edge, C4) all are/were available w/ 4 or 5mm. I remember experiencing inconsistency in the earlier days of Onyx, but the (reformulated?) Onyxx is my default resole choice, unless I have a very specific intent for a pair of shoes (Grip2 for Rifle, Edge for hot days/dime edging). FWIW, It's the most expensive rubber R&R charges, the 4mm Edge being the least expensive.
S. Neoh · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2009 · Points: 10

Thanks, reboot. Great info. Very timely, I had planned to send a pair to R&R this weekend!

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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