We're hiring an experienced UX Designer to join us in Boulder, CO.
Mountain Project Logo

How Many Quickdraws?

Original Post
M Kilts · · Hooper, Utah · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 45

Hello friends! I have began climbing in March and since then have slowly gathered together the basics. Just starting with Sport and hope to one day be able to afford Trad equipment ha.

I am at a point where I no longer want to use quickdraws of partners and wish to have my own. There are a few questions I have in mind though:

How many draws are recommended? Most routes in my area seem to have anywhere from 3 - 6? But I have seen some with 12. Also I figure it is a good practice to carry an additional 1 or 2 for safety.

What are favorite make/model and why? What do you think of Mad Rock?

Would it be best to buy new or is buying used healthy too?

What are other recommendations or things I should consider?

duggk · · arlington · Joined Dec 2015 · Points: 110

dozen draws plus 2 alpine ones is a good start. i get cheap ones because sport draws get worked. i prefer a keylock bolt side biner and bent solid gate or wire gate for the rope side. black diamond posiwire or camp orbit are the styles that i prefer. i also like the 15-18cm dogbones instead of the 11cm ones but not super picky about it

ViperScale . · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2013 · Points: 235

Which ones you buy are kinda up to you, I have used tons of different types and different people like different ones.

I always perfer buying new if it involves textiles because you never really know what has been done to them.

One key thing you want to remember (and also may want to consider when buying) is that you always want the same side going to the bolt and the same side going to the rope. This prevents getting sharp areas on the biner that could cut the rope. Normally I like to have solid gate or different color on the bolt side vs wire gate or other color on the rope side so it makes it easy to remember which side to use.

I personally have 14 but you will rarely use that many on a single pitch unless you are doing multi-pitch and linking.

I also like thicker dog bones that help prevent it from twisting while clipping.

that guy named seb · · Britland · Joined Oct 2015 · Points: 205

If ur climbing sport get as many draws as you can and bring what u need :P there's really not much more to it, unless ur doing some mega endurance routes 12 will probably be fine. For trad i tend to only bring about 6 for a 20 meter pitch at 5.10c(ish) and find it to be plenty i might even have some left over if it's a slab.

CornCob · · Sandy, UT · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 20

Seems like most quickdraws come in packs of 6, some may come in packs of 5. My suggestion would be pick up two packs of cheap rugged draws and call it good. I've rarely seen a single pitch sport route that requires more than 12 draws.

Daniel Joder · · Barcelona, Spain · Joined Nov 2015 · Points: 0

12-15 is a great start. In addition, I have two alpine draws with lockers I use for the bolts at the top. Petzl Spirit Express quickdraws get excellent reviews and I like them (beefy and easy to clip--and grab!) but are a bit expensive at $22.95 new. Sometimes they will go on sale at $17.00 or so (currently gearx.com has such a sale). Consider a mix of 12cm and 17cm--more shorter ones if you climb primarily straight routes, the longer ones if not. A couple of regular alpine draws are useful for extending a bolt that sits under a roof. Finally, there are times when you might need 20+ draws--combining the first two pitches of Playin' Hooky in Clear Creek Canyon comes to mind. Just combine gear with your buddy in that situation.

M Kilts · · Hooper, Utah · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 45

Thank y'all for the guidance. I recently bought 11 draws from the forums for $80. Normally I haven't used draws to set an anchor after leading although i have seen many people do so. I like to use two slings four biners. pretty much the same concept.

I am not familiar with Alpine draws though? I suppose I should look into them.

Again, Thanks for the feedback!

M Kilts · · Hooper, Utah · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 45

Just looked up alpine quickdraw haha. I did not realize i was using a version of them to set up my anchors. now I know!

Matt Himmelstein · · Orange, California · Joined Jun 2014 · Points: 125

A dozen is a good number. Add a cordalette and 4 lockers for extending the chains.

Eastern Mountain Sports has 2 different 5 packs of Camp draws for $5, so you are talking about $9 per draw.


You can also get a 6 pack of BDs for $10.50 a draw, so if you want a dozen to match:

Of course, you can get 15 of the Camps for $135 vs 12 of the BDs for #126, so I would go with the Camps if you want to get in and save some $.

Even cheaper is a 6 pack of Mad Dogs for $48, so you can get a dozen for under $100. I have not used those draws, but I have a number of Mad Dog wire gate 'biners and then work fine.

I overkill on the top rope setup, so I go with 2 twist locks into the bolts (I like these ones):
And 2 ovals for the rope:
Add in a 4' Dynema or Nylon runner and you have your full set up for leading and top roping.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Post a Reply

Log In to Reply