The Petzl Laser Sonic ice screw is unique for two reasons. First, it features a rotating hanger that allows you to drive the screw into the ice much faster once the screw is started. This feature makes it not only easy to grab but also gives the climber the option to pre-clip a quick draw or a screamer to get even more leverage. Second, it comes with an Ice Flute: a hard plastic holster for your ice screw. This holster protects the screws teeth along with your backpack and its contents. This ice flute also becomes a holster on your harness to quickly draw the screw out of.
As of November 2016, this product has been discontinued.
Our Analysis and Test Results
November 17, 2013
After getting the Laser Sonic to bite, the large rotating hanger was easy to spin, even when we were super pumped. As a bonus to the second, they are are easily able to clean the screw while leaving the hanger clipped to the rope. Both ice climbing novices (worried about dropping screws) and experts (wanting to climb as efficiently as possible) love this feature.
We liked the Ice Flute for its clever design that locks the screw in places until you are ready to unlock and deploy the screw with a flick of your fingers. We didn't rack the screws in the Ice Flutes for pure ice routes where we preferred to use ice clippers. But for general mountaineering or other routes where you might use two or less ice screws, it was nice to leave the screws in the Ice Flutes on our harness or fixed on our packs waist belt.
The one main disadvantage is the screws don start as easily as some of the other screws we tested. This was less noticeable above 15F but as the ice got colder and more brittle, we found the Petzl Laser Sonic was not nearly as easy to get started as the Black Diamond Express or Grivel 360. It was little easier to start than the DMM Revolution.
OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: November 17, 2013
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