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Sterling Chain Reactor Review

Sterling Chain Reactor
Photo: Sterling
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Price:  $31 List | $35.99 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Best fall absorption of all the products, least expensive
Cons:  Bulkiest of all the contenders
Manufacturer:   Sterling
By Chris McNamara ⋅ Founder and Editor-in-Chief  ⋅  Apr 1, 2011
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Our Verdict

The Chain Reactor is the only anchor chain we tested made of 100 percent nylon. This gives it the most fall absorption of all the anchor chains. How much this matters in the subject of much debate. If you are someone who wants the highest fall-absorbing anchor chain, this is the one to get. If you are a typical traditional or sport climber, we recommend the Metolius Personal Anchor System because it maintains some of the absorption properties of nylon while it is low-profile, easy to handle, and feels bomber.

Our Analysis and Test Results


This in the only anchor chain we know of rated to hold three factor two falls. This makes it absorb the most force of other anchor chains if you accidentally shock load the anchor. It is also the least expensive anchor chain, $4 or $5 less than the competitors.


This is the bulkiest of all the anchor chains we tested. We also noticed how the tabs at the ends of the bar tacks got hung up more than other anchor chains. Not a big deal, but a little annoying. Because it is nylon, it will absorb more water than Dyneema if you are using this in a snow environment. While it is great that you can get it with colored tabs at either end, it would be nice if the whole chain had some color for easy differentiation if you have a dark harness.

This comes in two version: Regular and Pro. The Pro version has the end you connect to your harness doubled up. Most people should get the Regular version as it is less bulky.

Chris McNamara