Hands-on Gear Review
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Street Price: Varies from $9 - $17 | Compare prices at 8 resellers
Pros: Good value, easy to unclip from bolts, good all around biner
Cons: Not the lightest, didn't score as high as others
Best Uses: All-around use climbing use with and emphasis on sport climbing.
The Black Diamond Positron Quickdraw is a good medium-sized quickdraw for sport, trad or top rope routes. The stand out feature being the easy to unclip keylock design.
The Petzl Spirit Express is its main competitor and has a similar non-wiregate keylock design. The Spirit is a little lighter, little easier to pull rope through, and the Spirit has grooves in the gate that make it a little easier to do reachy clips. We prefer the Spirit but the Positron is much less expensive ($16 vs $20 for the Spirit). Since the Positron also is a great biner, we wouldn't hesitate to recommend it if you are on a budget. Or, $15 you can also get the high-scoring Wild Country Nitro Quickdraw which is much lighter than the Positron but comes with a wiregate (no keylock). If you just want the most carabiner for your money, it's hard to go wrong with the Mad Rock UltraLight Quickdraw for $15. Keep in mind those are retail prices and you maybe find much better deals by searching our Pricefinder for a quickdraw sale.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
Due to the keylock gate design, this one of the easiest carabiners to unclip from bolt hangers on steep routes. Also, the keylock makes this a great carabiner to rack nuts and gear on (it won't get hung up as easily on a sling). Other than that, this is just a great work horse biner. It's not light but it works in a variety of situations, is easy to clip and handle, and gets the job done.
There were no major dislikes with this quickdraw other than it just didn't perform quite as well as others. It was not not one of the easiest to clip and not one of the lightest which propelled other carabiners ahead.
The dogbone (quickdraw sling) is a little thin. We like thin dogbones on light carabiners, but since this is more of a workhorse sport climbing biner, we would rather have a heftier sling that is easy and comfy to grab like the Petzl Express Sling or the sling on the Black Diamond LiveWire Quickdraw.
This is an affordable work horse draw ideal for clipping bolts in any situation, or extending gear placements.
This is one of the best deals on a keylock carabiner. However, once you compare it to other non-keylock carabiners, it is just in the middle of the value range (there are a bunch of $14 and $15 draws out there).
You can buy the Black Diamond Positron carabiners individually in straight gate and bent gate models. There is also the Black Diamond Positron Screwgate locking carabiner for belaying and using in anchors.
— Chris McNamara
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: October 6, 2010
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