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Mad Rock UltraLight Straight Gate Review

Mad Rock Ultra-Light Straight
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Price:  $6 List | $4.46 at Amazon
Pros:  Great value, easy to handle, light
Cons:  Gate hang up
Manufacturer:   Mad Rock
By Chris McNamara and Chris Summit  ⋅  Apr 18, 2010
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The Skinny

The Mad Rock Ultra-Light Straight is the best deal for a lightweight carabiner we found. It's hard to find any cheaper carabiner, let alone a really light one. Its forged I-beam construction makes it pretty easy to hold and overall it was a solid but not exceptional performer.

For the low price of $6 this is one of the least expensive, lightest and strongest small to medium sized carabiners on the market. It is very similar to the Wild Country Astro except it is just a gram heavier (30g vs 29g for the Astro). However, it is $2 cheaper than the Astro and $2-3 cheaper than the other top biners in its category: Black Diamond Oz Carabiner. Overall, unless you want the absolute lightest carabiners (which are also tiny) like the Metolius FS Mini or CAMP Nano 22 Carabiner, it's hard to go wrong with loading up on Mad Rock Ultra-Light. It's the best wiregate carabiner for the money.


Our Analysis and Test Results

Likes


This carabiner performed well in most tests. The rope ran fairly smooth through it for the smoothness test. It is just big enough to clip 3 figure eights and still open the gate. It's a nice size: not too small - not too big. This makes it more easily usable with gloves unlike really small carabiners like the Metolius FS Mini. The spine design makes it easy to grip and wire-gate carabiners are not as likely to freeze shut on alpine routes.

Dislikes


There were no major dislikes with this carabiner. As for minor ones: as with almost all with the wire-gate design, the notch gets caught up on the bolt hanger when cleaning steep routes. Also, the spine not as easy to grip as Wild Country Astro (not a really big deal). Unfortunately, this carabiner is a little hard to find: not a ton of retailers carry it.

Best Application


This is an all around really good carabiner. We would use it on our trad rack as well as a quick draw carabiner. This straight biner is best paired on a quickdraw with the Mad Rock UltraLight Bent Gate

Value


This is the best value in a lightweight wiregate carabiner. Actually, it is one of the best values for any carabiner.


Chris McNamara and Chris Summit