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Hands-on Gear Review
Edelweiss Curve Unicore Supereverdry Review
Cons: Very stiff, poor clipping action.
Bottom line: A stiff rope that is not great for top roping.
The Edelweiss Curve Unicore Supereverdry was the only "Unicore" constructed rope in this review (see the description below). We've used other manufacturers' "Unicore" ropes in the past, and have been impressed by the suppleness of the line — but that was not the case with this one. It was extremely stiff, similar to a static line in feel, which made feeding it out and clipping a chore. On the other hand, and weirdly somehow, this rope had one of the highest elongations. That made the catches soft, but when top roping on the line there was just too much stretch. If you are looking for a great all-around rope, we much preferred our Editors' Choice winner, the Mammut Infinity, and if you are looking for a rope specifically for top roping, check out our Top pick for that, the Black Diamond 9.9mm
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Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results
The Edelweiss Curve Unicore Supereverdry uses "Unicore" technology in its construction. This process bonds the sheath to core, which eliminates sheath slippage and keeps the two bonded together even if the sheath is cut or torn. This rope is 9.8 mm in diameter and weighs 64 g/m. It's rated for 8 falls with an 8 kN impact force rating and 9.4% static elongation.
Because this rope scored so poorly for handling, it ended up with a very low overall score.
We often poll a group of people when testing gear, as many of our ratings our subjective, and as the saying goes, one person's garbage is another's treasure. However, we were unanimous in our dislike of the way this rope handled. Over 10 people tried out this rope, and we all found it stiff, difficult to feed through a GriGri or other belay device quickly, and unpleasant to clip. Compared to our Top Pick for Sport Climbing, the Maxim Pinnacle, it felt like a static rope rather than a dynamic one.
We took some whippers on this line and were prepared to be jarred due to the handling issues, but we were surprised that they felt quite soft for such a stiff rope. This rope has an 8 kN impact force rating and a 9.4% static elongation. While we weren't able to really tell the difference between an 8 and say, an 8.5 or 9 kN rating in the field (so many other factors determine the "softness" of a catch), we could tell that there was a lot of elongation, particularly when top roping. If you've ever been on a top rope with no slack in the line, weighted the rope and then felt like you still fell a couple of feet, that was probably due to a larger static elongation. This is great for soft catches on lead, but can be dangerous or even scary for a seconder, particularly if there are obstacles on a climb that you don't want to hit, like a block or slab.
This rope was one of the heaviest ones in this review. It weighs 64 g/m, and it's not the "Unicore" technology that makes this rope heavy, as the standard Curve rope also weighs 64 g/m. Obviously, a skinnier rope will weigh less per meter, so if you are trying to cut some weight then check out a 9.5 or smaller rope. Our Top Pick for a Workhorse Rope, the Sterling Evolution Velocity, is also a 9.8 mm rope and it weighs 62 g/m, saving you about a quarter of a pound on a 60 m rope.
In one sense, this rope will be very durable, because you'll never want to use it! Kidding aside, we forced ourselves to take it out and put over 60 pitches on it, hoping that it would soften up a little a least (that didn't happen). It didn't get a lot of surface wear on the sheath either, so that is a definite plus. In fact, it was one of the ropes in the best shape after our testing process, except for the middle marker, which quickly faded off and is difficult to detect now.
The Edelweiss Curve Unicore Supereverdry is great for those who like soft catches. It's a little heavy to be a great rope for long pitches, though the "Unicore" construction is great for multipitch scenarios where the sheath gets sliced and you need to rappel out of the situation. You can still use this rope without having to tie off the damaged section (assuming the core wasn't significantly compromised as well. We don't recommend this line for top roping though due to the longer elongation.
This rope retails for $260 in the 60 m "Unicore" and "Supereverdry" treatments, which makes it one of the more expensive lines in this review. You can buy our Best Buy winner, the Beal Booster III, for about $50 less, and the Black Diamond 9.9 mm is only $150.
We were really excited to try out the Edelweiss Curve Unicore Supereverdry, but boy did it disappoint. We can't confirm if it's the "Unicore" construction that makes it so stiff, since we didn't test the regular Curve rope, but this one was just too difficult to handle.
— Cam McKenzie Ring
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