Mad Rock Concorde Review
Cons: Narrow sling, exposed notch can snag on gear, wide profile
Manufacturer: Mad Rock Climbing
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Mad Rock Concorde
|Price||$12.95 at Amazon||$18.95 at REI|
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|$27.95 at Backcountry|
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|$13.95 at Backcountry|
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|$15.95 at Backcountry|
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|Pros||Inexpensive||Snappy clipping action, wide sling is easy to grab, light for a sport quickdraw||Great clipping, wide sling for easy grabbing, keylocking gates don't snag||Easy to clip, durable construction, large size works well with gloves||Visually pleasing, affordable, easy to unclip keylocking top biner|
|Cons||Narrow sling, exposed notch can snag on gear, wide profile||Expensive, still a little heavy for trad climbing||Heavy, expensive||Heavy, dogbone is on the thin side and not easy to grab||Tight gate springs require slightly more effort than others to clip, 18mm sling adequate but not perfect for grabbing|
|Bottom Line||Least expensive draw on the market||Our favorite option for sport climbing||Great sport climbing draw but on the heavy side||Large carabiners work well with gloves on||Best Bang for the Buck winner due to its solid performance at a relatively low price|
|Rating Categories||Mad Rock Concorde||Petzl Spirit Express||DMM Alpha Sport Quickdraw||Petzl Djinn Axess||Black Diamond HotForge Hybrid|
|Ease Of Clipping (25%)|
|Ease Of Unclipping (25%)|
|Ease Of Grabbing (15%)|
|Specs||Mad Rock Concorde||Petzl Spirit Express||DMM Alpha Sport...||Petzl Djinn Axess||Black Diamond...|
|Weight (ounces)||3 oz||3.2 oz||3.9 oz||4 oz||3.5 oz|
|Gate opening bottom carabiner (mm)||25 mm||25 mm||25 mm||27 mm||27 mm|
|Width of sling (mm)||10 mm||25 mm||25 mm||16 mm||18 mm|
|Manufacturer Warranty||Limited lifetime warranty||3 year||1 year||3 year||1 year|
|Non-Snagging Top Biner||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Non-Snagging Bottom Biner||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||No|
|Unique features||Double bent wiregate biners||Sling is wider at the bottom to facilitate grabbing, stiff sling||Dual keylock carabiners, wide sling||Large carabiners good for big hands or gloves, easy to clip||Visual patterning designed to easily catch the eye while climbing|
|Available sling lengths||10 cm||12 cm, 17 cm||12 cm, 18 cm, 25 cm||12 cm, 17 cm||12 cm, 16 cm|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Mad Rock Concorde is a budget-friendly quickdraw that still gets the job done, though not particularly well. While the price is right, it is on the heavy side for trad climbing use, and not functional for sport climbing. But sometimes any draw is better than none, so if you need a set but aren't looking to spend a lot on them, this could be an option to consider.
Ease of Clipping
While not the hardest model to clip (that honor goes to the Concorde's sibling, the Mad Rock Ultra Light Wire), it isn't the easiest either. The tension on the wiregates felt a little stiff, but not as bad as the Ultra Light. We appreciated that the rope end has a slight bend to it.
Ease of Unclipping
If you've read some of our other quickdraws reviews you probably already know what we are going to say — this one comes with an unprotected wiregate notch that can get hung up on things when you go to unclip it. If you plan to climb a lot of steep sport routes, do you and your partner a favor, and look for something with a protected notch or keylocking solid gate.
This draw weighs 3.0 ounces, which is about the middle of the pack. It's not as light as the lightest options (which clock in as low as 1.9 ounces), but it is lighter than most of the more sport climbing-focused options out there. If you like the looks (and price point) of this model but want something a little lighter, Mad Rock's Ultra Light Wire draw weighs only 2.4 ounces.
Our testers' main complaint about the Concorde's ease of handling is that the carabiners are on the thick side and take up more room on your harness. They also tend to bunch up a bit and cross-clipped on us occasionally when we had a lot of stuff on our gear loops. The thinner sling also made them more prone to twisting around, as you can see in the photo below.
Ease of Grabbing
Like all of the thin 10mm draws, this one is not easy to grab — the dogbone felt unusually short on this model as well, making even more challenging to hang onto. If you know that you are prone to grabbing draws on challenging climbs (rather than take the whip), then look for something with a 25mm or wider dogbone, like our Editors' Choice winner, and accept that paying a bit more is often worth it.
The price on this draw is hard to beat. It also comes in a six-pack for added savings. Whether or not that is a good value, though, is up for debate. It is one of the lowest-scoring models in our test group and given a choice we'd spend a little bit more for something else.
We appreciate Mad Rock's efforts to create the least expensive draw possible. There's always a need for budget items, and the Concorde is something even the poorest of dirtbags could probably afford. While this quickdraw doesn't perform as well as the more expensive models, if you don't care about anything else but the price of your quickdraws (and some climbers just don't!), then these are hard to beat.
— Cam McKenzie Ring