Hands-on Gear Review
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Pros: Fits in pin scars great, works well in irregular rock types
Cons: Cables tend to get kinked, difficult to clean
Best Uses: Aid climbing, micro protected free routes
DMM Brass Offsets are our pick for best brass Climbing Nut. From spicy free climbs in Eldorado Canyon to delicate clean aid routes in the Valley, these little nuts are incredible. DMM Brass Offset is a design purchased from Hugh Banner two years ago when HB went out of business. DMM made a few small changes that only improved the old design. Brass Offsets often fit perfectly in shallow flares where most other stoppers would barely hold body weight. They are available in seven sizes, more than most other companies offer for micro nuts. These guys excel when the going gets small, real small. The smallest size has only about 25 percent of the mass of a #1 BD Stopper or an Omega Pacific Wedgie. It is so small that most climbers laugh when they first see it.
Most people who buy brass nuts use them for aid climbing and DMM Brass Offsets are the best nuts for fitting into micro pin scars and shallow pods. Even for free climbing these nuts fit the best. Their cables are less durable because the offset design keeps them from rotating if you yank up on the nut. You can avoid this with a nut tool and a little care.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
DMM Brass Offsets are a climbing nut designed to fit pin scars perfectly. They also fit the biggest range of fissures of any brass nuts we tested. Brass Offsets have a good blend of brass and bronze, being durable but also deforming slightly to the rock to help provide holding power. Sizes #5 and #6 have a groove of metal removed on either side that helps them fit more textured or irregular rock. Sizes #1 to #4 don't have this but are small enough so that it isn't an issue. One thing that DMM changed from the HB design was to eliminate the bulky plastic color coding from the clip-in point of the nut. Instead, the swages are color coded to differentiate sizes. The smallest size is so small that most people won't ever use it, but aid climbers might find it to be their only option.
These brass nuts, like all brass nuts, are not as durable as aluminum models. The DMM's heads are of average durability but the cables are slightly more prone to kinking because of their offset design. If you aren't careful and yank straight up, the offset taper doesn't allow the nut to pivot in the rock, thus kinking the cable. They are more challenging to clean because of the depression on either side of the nut. This helps with irregularity in the rock but also makes them more cruxy to get out.
If you are into aid climbing then you pretty much need a set of these, maybe two. They aren't designed for everyday use (unless like Chris McNamara you go through stretches where you seem to climb El Cap nearly every day). Constant use will beat them up compared to aluminum models but if micro-protected free climbs are your game then these should be the first brass nuts to reach for.
They aren't the cheapest brass nuts on the market but they seem to work the best. If you are into aid climbing these nuts are a must-have. Pitches that might have been C3 could go at C1 with these. You make the call.
DMM Wallnuts, DMM Offset Nut and the DMM Micro Wallnut
— Ian Nicholson
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: February 7, 2010
Credit: Ian Nicholson
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