CAMP USA 11mm Express Dyneema Sling Review
Cons: Comparatively heavy, comparatively bulky, expensive
Manufacturer: CAMP USA
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The sling that the Camp USA 11mm Express Dyneema Sling compares most favorably toward is the Metolius Open Loop Sling, which we awarded our Top Pick for Anchor Building. That award could conceivably have also gone to this sling, although in the end its added cost makes it hard to justify buying it for the same performance. Like the Open Loop Sling, we are thrilled with how easy it is to untie knots once they have been weighted, something that genuinely cannot be said at all about most slings, especially those that are wider, like the Black Diamond Nylon Sewn Runner, or far thinner, like our Editors' Choice winning Mammut Contact Sling. We think this sling handles nicer and feels better against the skin than the Open Loop Sling, a compelling reason to choose it, despite the small additional expense.
Much like the Petzl Pur'Anneau Sling, this one is perfectly flat, without any sort of added bulk in the middle or ovular shape. It is made of Dyneema, so feels silky smooth to the touch, and the edges, which don't taper to a point but stay squared off, are also very smooth, without any of the weird nylon burrs that are found on the edges of a sling such as the Trango Low Bulk 11 Sling. It is thicker and stiffer than most, but this is what allows it to not cinch down as tightly. One minor downside is that the bar tack is quite large, and very stiff, without any desire to bend or flex.
This stiff, square shape to this sling makes it somewhat of a challenge to tie knots quickly without any twists involved. That said, we find that even when a twist works its way into the knot, the knot is not compromised in its ability to stay tied, so we generally prefer to tie them as quickly as possible, and not concern ourselves with twisting. Since it is so stiff, knots do not cinch down as tightly as with some other more supple slings, such as the Pur'Anneau or the Sterling Dyneema Sling, and its very slippery Dyneema fibers allow it to easily be loosened after weighting. This sling scored the highest marks for this metric, and it is a main reason we would highly recommend it for anchor building, where it is much more common to tie knots to help equalize multiple pieces.
Alpine Quickdraw Test
When tripling up a sling to make an alpine quickdraw, any added friction makes it harder to pull the two carabiners apart for proper equalization. With this sling, we found that not only is this an issue when the long, stiff bar tack happens to fall along the carabiner, but it is also slightly harder in general due to the added stiffness inherent in this relatively thick sling. Therefore, it is not by any means the easiest sling to triple up in this way (although we still managed to do so just fine). If you want the easiest slings for carrying on the harness as alpine quickdraws, we would recommend checking out the Mammut Contact Sling.
For this review we tested the 60cm, double-length runner version of this sling and weighed it on our independent scale at 30g. While this isn't exactly heavy, compared to the competition it is the heaviest Dyneema sling that we tested, with only Nylon slings, which are required to meet the same strength requirements, and generally need far more material in order to do so, weighing in heavier. If light is right in your world, then this likely isn't the sling for you.
As one may expect having read about the added weight, this sling is also more bulky than most. It is 11mm wide, making it one of the wider Dyneema offerings, and is also thicker all the way through than the Trango Low Bulk 11 Sling. It is roughly comparable in bulk to the Metolius Open Loop Sling, both of which are the same width. Once again, if the lowest profile is your jam, we would recommend looking toward the Mammut Contact Sling.
This sling is ideal in its longer lengths for use equalizing multiple pieces at anchors. In its double-length version it works just fine for extending pieces of protection, although it is neither the lightest or lowest profile option for doing so.
Retail price for this sling is $10, which is by no means the most expensive option for a Dyneema runner, but it is also a couple dollars more expensive than the least. Since there are higher performing options for less money available, we don't think it offers the best value.
The Camp USA 11mm Express Dyneema Runner performs well regardless of the circumstances, but is neither the most affordable, nor the lightest, least bulky, or demonstrating the least amount of friction during use. While it does handle nicely, and provide an excellent option for use at anchors, it would not be our first recommendation for a double-length runner.
— Andy Wellman