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GriGri+, REVO, or what?


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Raymond Moreno · · Roseville, CA · Joined Jun 2016 · Points: 140

Looking for a great belay device with assisted braking. 

Loved the concept behing the Vergo. 

Then the recall. 

Waited a while, then received the corrected Vergo. 

Baam...second recall shortly thereafter. (Some of the pins were not peened correctly).

Returned it for the second recall. 

Waited a few months, contacted Trango Monday the 23rd of October for an ETA. 

Their answer, “No timeline available”.

No way I’m waiting indefinitely. And even though I REALLY like their Vergo design, I’m still getting a refund. 

So now what to get?

REVO, GriGri+, or something else?

What do y’all think of the new GriGri+?



David Hous · · Boulder, Colorado · Joined Nov 2001 · Points: 195

I'm in the same boat, losing patience with Trango. I think the gri gri 2 is the standard all around sport climbing choice, the + is heavier, more durable and has some features oriented to new climbers like the anti panic lever. I don't know anyone with a revo, looks pretty beefy. I'm actually intrigued by the BD ATC Pilot, anyone got miles on that yet? The video looks simple, easy to use and hard to use wrong.

DrRockso · · Red River Gorge, KY · Joined Sep 2013 · Points: 347

Just get the grigri2, unless the stainless wear plate on the grigri+ appeals to you because you climb lots and with sandy ropes.

John Wilder · · Las Vegas, NV · Joined Feb 2004 · Points: 1,530

Grigri2. Gets the job done at a high level across the board. Isn't perfect in every category, but gets high marks in all of them, which is more than any other device on the market.

The grigri+ is, imho, probably an institutional device and not really worth the money. I don't think they're becoming a replacement for the 2- too pricey for no real gains. 

The revo isn't out yet, but is coming soon. Pricey and bulky, it'll be popular with a certain segment of the climbing community for some slick ingenuity, but imho, too heavy, expensive and bulky to be considered a replacement for the grigri2 and everything it's capable of. 

Squeak · · Perth West OZ · Joined Feb 2016 · Points: 23

Get a Gri Gri the Revo is already 2 years coming, with not definite retail release

David Cummings · · Grand Junction, CO · Joined Jul 2007 · Points: 190

I like the GriGri 2 and the GriGri +

I like how simple the grigri 2 is

The grigri + is great because it is def more durable.  I also like the TR mode for top belay off the anchor on multi pitch routes.  I carry a grigri on all multi pitch routes now.

Noah Yetter · · Lakewood, CO · Joined Jul 2015 · Points: 105

Love my Mad Rock Lifeguard. Smaller and lighter than a Grigri2, feeds slack without locking up.

Bill Shubert · · Lexington, MA · Joined Jul 2012 · Points: 55

I'm not quite in your boat - I'm happy with my ATC, I prefer an ATC to a grigri, but I'm willing to try something that sounds like it might be an improved ATC. So I've decided to try the revo when it comes out, I like that it basically is the ATC that I like so much, just has a safety mechanism to save the climber if I'm knocked out by rockfall or if I fumble the rope or whatever.

But if you're in more of a hurry than me, or not as big a fan of tube belay devices, then I'd just get one from the GriGri family. They're popular, they work well, I've used one and while I prefer an ATC I can see why so many people like the GriGri.

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 456

John Wilder wrote:

The revo isn't out yet, but is coming soon. Pricey and bulky, it'll be popular with a certain segment of the climbing community for some slick ingenuity, but imho, too heavy, expensive and bulky to be considered a replacement for the grigri2 and everything it's capable of. 

So the device isn't even out yet and you're already making judgement based on information that hasn't been released yet. Have they released a price figure yet? and how can you claim to know how much it weighs when it's not even out yet. Seems like you're basing your judgement more on style than function 

Mark Says · · Aspen, CO · Joined Jul 2017 · Points: 395

I didn't think I was going to be (maybe I didn't want to be?), but I'm a fan of the GriGri+. The top vs lead mode is useful if not entirely necessary, and the panic break in the lever has never bothered me like it does some people, maybe because I tend to lower my partner using the lever more as a joystick than an on/off switch.

I still use my ATC every few outings to make sure I don't get complacent and expect the device to assist me all the time.

@eli and @john, don't make me turn this car around.

John Wilder · · Las Vegas, NV · Joined Feb 2004 · Points: 1,530

eli poss wrote:

So the device isn't even out yet and you're already making judgement based on information that hasn't been released yet. Have they released a price figure yet? and how can you claim to know how much it weighs when it's not even out yet. Seems like you're basing your judgement more on style than function 

Weight and price are both available,  Eli. 

Ryan Hamilton · · Orem · Joined Aug 2011 · Points: 20

I just got the BD Pilot. I belayed a half dozen pitches with it today and my partner also used it to belay me. I still probably like the Grigri better for single pitch stuff, but if you're someone that likes a tube style device because of simplicity, weight, etc. Then I think you should really take a look at the Pilot. It was pretty easy to get used to keeping the brake hand thumb under the lip when feeding rope up. It definitely works better than the Mammut Smart. I haven't used the Megajul but my partner has and he said that the Pilot is definitely better in that respect too. 

We each took some victory falls (it was a lunch time session in the gym)  to test the catch and holding power. It caught falls well. It does let a little rope slide through (maybe 1 ft.), which is nice for a soft catch, but could possibly be a problem if you're trying to keep someone from decking. One thing I really liked was the control in lowering. It has a fairly wide sweet spot which I thought controlled lowering the climber even better than a Grigri. Sometimes I wish I had belay glove on with the grigri, but the Pilot was easy to find and keep a speed that I felt comfortable with. We used a BD Vaporlock carabiner. One last thing to note. When locked up with a climber hanging with full weight on the rope it will let the rope slowly slide through the device if you're not applying braking pressure. Since it keeps the rope sliding through in a straight line it also kept any twists or kinks from forming in the rope. 

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

I'm an old school, hip belay, Sticht plate, and now DMM Pivot guy. The REVO , if it lives up to the promo ad hype, is definitely something I will get for certain types of climbs and situations, once it comes out. It seems like an advance even over the various GriGri versions. I think I would have more confidence with a REVO than with a GriGri when in the hands of a less-experienced belayer--it appears to be a bit more foolproof.

Mark Says · · Aspen, CO · Joined Jul 2017 · Points: 395

Daniel Joder wrote:

 It seems like an advance even over the various GriGri versions. I think I would have more confidence with a REVO than with a GriGri when in the hands of a less-experienced belayer--it appears to be a bit more foolproof.

I find this entertaining, a big selling point of the REVO is that you can load it in either direction. That alludes to the biggest mistake with the GriGri being that people load it backwards. In fact, that's the only mistake I can see being possible with it.

...and yet, there's giant indicators engraved on the GriGri. Who are these people who load it backwards, and how do they get dressed in the morning?

Chase Giltner · · Seattle, WA · Joined Jun 2017 · Points: 0

Another vote for the madrock lifeguard. 

kevin deweese · · Oakland, Ca · Joined Jan 2007 · Points: 350

Chase Giltner wrote:

Love my Mad Rock Lifeguard. Smaller and lighter than a Grigri2, feeds slack without locking up.

I was super excited for my Lifeguard when it showed up and it works great in most situations BUT if you plan on doing a lot of rapping with it (which I do because I primarily solo bigwall climb or siege climb bigwall FAs) then the Lifeguard is not going to be a good choice. This is because the handle is made of metal so rapping more than 30m at a time tends to make the handle heat up to the point of not being able to touch it. But then again, if you're bigwalling then you're wearing wall gloves which helps. Also, it does cool off relatively quick. 

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 456

John Wilder wrote:

Weight and price are both available,  Eli. 

Price is not currently listed. And it is 75 grams more than the grigri. I don't think 75 grams is really gonna make or break your climbing I is a good price to pay for a lot of safety benefits. The vast majority of accidents with the gri-gri or other assisted braking devices is from the belayer defeating the braking mechanism.According to WC it is impossible to do this with the revo, which eliminates the vast majority of belay device related accidents.

It's also going to be pretty popular in the roped soloing community as silent partners are no longer being manufactured and many very experienced roped soloists claim it should be better for that than the gri-gri or eddy.

John Wilder · · Las Vegas, NV · Joined Feb 2004 · Points: 1,530

eli poss wrote:

Price is not currently listed. And it is 75 grams more than the grigri. I don't think 75 grams is really gonna make or break your climbing I is a good price to pay for a lot of safety benefits. The vast majority of accidents with the gri-gri or other assisted braking devices is from the belayer defeating the braking mechanism.According to WC it is impossible to do this with the revo, which eliminates the vast majority of belay device related accidents.

It's also going to be pretty popular in the roped soloing community as silent partners are no longer being manufactured and many very experienced roped soloists claim it should be better for that than the gri-gri or eddy.

You're entitled to your opinion. I've stated mine. Nothing in yours contradicts what I said. Some people will be psyched on the Revo, but most, imho, won't. It's heavier, bulkier, and more expensive than the grigri.

As an aside, the pricing on the Revo is likely to be well north of $99 (previous posted pricing was $129, and I doubt it will be less). 

It's been my experience that those new devices that have tried to compete with the grigri have never been able to really dent its market. Those that are better from a safety perspective tend to be heavier and/or more expensive (Eddy, Matik), and those that have beaten it on price and weight (Cinch/Vergo) have struggled with their own safety issues. I suspect that the Revo will fall into the Eddy and Matik arena- safer, but price and bulk will prevent mass adoption. I could be wrong, of course, but history has a way of repeating itself. 

On a final note. There are trade offs with every device and everyone has to make their own calls about what they feel comfortable using. I don't particularly care what other people use, so long as they are comfortable and competent with it. If you're psyched on the Revo, more power to you. 

Raymond Moreno · · Roseville, CA · Joined Jun 2016 · Points: 140

Not sure if I want to carry/feel the bulk of the REVO. 

Some things about the REVO attract me (smoothness in feeding rope, and safety), but others don’t. (High cost, extra weight).

I was interested in the GriGri+...but hear that some folks at indoor climbing gyms with thicker ropes, are constantly overshooting the sweet spot and locking the device multiple times. 

The latter REALLY turned me OFF. 

The GriGri2 has been time-tested, and seems to be the best bet. 

By the way, I use a Mammut 9.5mm rope when I lead climb. 

Still considering my options. 

As soon as I receive the Trango Vergo refund...I’ll be purchasing the new belay device. (Any day now).

UPDATE: Seriously considering the MR Lifeguard now. 

Andrew Steavpack · · Castle Pines, CO · Joined Mar 2017 · Points: 0

Since the WC Revo doesn't cam like a Gri Gri will it require a tighter grip on the rope to keep the rope from slowly feeding while holding a partner while they're hanging since the locking mechanism wouldn't activate if simply taking rope for them to take a break. Don't entirely understand the mechanism but that's probably the biggest appeal to the Gri Gri or my Megajul for me and I always pick it over an ATC up when a partner is projecting a route 

Alex Temus · · Small Town, USA · Joined Jun 2016 · Points: 261

About the Lifeguard. feeding slack is a breeze, lowering a climber/rappelling definitely isn't ideal though. The "Sweet spot" where you can lower someone smoothly is pretty narrow. I'm pretty sure that's just a common issue with assisted-braking devices.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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