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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:27 pm 
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jimw wrote:
BGnight wrote:
(Wait, is this the same BGnight who was crying like a baby with his 2 axes topping out on Powerhouse last time we were there? :))


I have no idea what you're talking about :wink:

Whippets suck!


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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 4:42 pm 
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KR wrote:
yo, here's my contribution on the subject...

I've been using them for over a year now, and overall, I think there are too many drawbacks for me.

1. Push button freezes and is a pain in the a#%! Especially with gloves on.

2. Like BCRider guessed, when folded up, they are too shoft to fit comfortably between two straps on the outside of a couple of my packs. BC Expedition pole is the beeswax for this.

3. If I need to store them in my pack on the decent, they are a decent bundle, and I'll have to plan my pack/packing accordingly. Plus, my pack is big enough as it is. I don't like trying to carry them in my pack, which leads to my next comment.

4. I actually prefer to carry my poles in my back hand. With other poles (Expeditions, etc.), you are only carrying the diameter of two poles in your hand. With these folded up, they're too big to hold comfortably (even with thin gloves and my big monster paws). Essentially, you're trying to hold onto 6 poles (2 x 3 poles per bundle).

5. If you are able to hold them in your hand on the downhill (which I can do sometimes, just not easily), you don't get the benefits that you get with other poles, which is to use them to help stand up when stopping mid-pitch, or to help push through flat sections. (And, I like the two section BD pole for this reason. They're short enough when collapsed to carry comfortably in your back hand, yet long enough when collapsed to still assist when stopping or pushing through flats, and they're easily and quickly extended. And, the longer section allows for greater uses with the BD snow saw, such as cutting the backs of your ECTs.)

6. And, perhaps the biggest thing (and I don't use them now b/c of it), is that the two sleeves that slide apart to extend the pole have corroded to the point where I can't move them without tools... really. This is NOT a case of not allowing them to dry properly after use (which I think is inhibited by their design, actually). Someone told me this got fixed in a redesign, so I wonder what the latest is.

Overall, I do think they are a neat design, and I think everyone at BD is making an honest attempt to provide some splitboard specific products. (These poles were meant for splitboarders, obviously.) They have been very durable for me, even while using them on a 30 day expedition this summer is steep, rocky terrain with heavy packs. I like how they feel swinging in my hands while touring (is that something about "swing weight"?).

But, for my preferences, they just don't do it for me.


I just had lunch with Fitit and he brought his Compactors over for me to take a look at. My take on them is that they are a pretty well made product overall and this review makes them sound a lot cheaper than what I saw today.

First, I leaned on them pretty hard and there was little deflection, a lot less than I was expecting for a "nesting" type of pole.

The button that is at the bottom of the extending portion is a spring-loaded button to release the tension on the internal tensioner (which can also be adjusted). It is high on the shaft and too small to be operated with bulky gloves, but it seems like an item that would break free pretty easily if it froze up. KR, can you clarify how it freezes up and what problems you had with unsticking it?

I'd agree with KR that it is too bulky to carry in one hand, but I'm not that concerned with that as I hardly ever ride with the poles in my hand.

I don't know why KR's pole corroded so badly, but I've seen that sporadically on all extending poles (aluminum and carbon) at one time or another, so it might be a user specific item. Did you have a pre-production model?

As for being too small to fit on a pack? I don't see it. I mean the flick lock can be extended to make the pole whatever length you'd need to strap on the pack efficiently. They are also small enough to fit inside your pack if you desire. Poles generally don't get too wet that a few taps of dislodging snow and your pack insides won't get any more wet than putting your skins inside will.

I do like the grip tape material on the shaft under the grip, which will make sidehilling a bit easier without a need to adjust one pole. I don't think the Expedition has that, but could be added very cheaply.

Bottom line it has some nice features for the ~$30 premium over the Expeditions and collapses ~7" smaller, which may or may not work for everyone. I'm a bit torn between the two, as both are a bit of an upgrade to my Life Link Variant in packed size and I'm not sure a 30% premium is warranted for 7" and grip tape. I'm going to take a harder look at my packs this week/weekend and see how I would pack in each one, but I am still very seriously considering the Compactors after seeing Fitit's.


Scooby2 wrote:
So sad to be delegated to talking about pole buttons in December :cry:
There is only one locking button on each BD Z-pole and it is located up high, I wouldn't anticipate it getting icy and frozen in like lower located buttons can. It locks in tension on the pole lowers so you can pull up on your risers.


Very sad, but lack of snow will do it to you. It was good to get riding again this weekend on the low angle man-made ribbons of snow, but it wasn't satiating in the least...

C'mmon Ullr, show up already!!


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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:53 pm 
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Here's clarification:

With the poles extended, the buttons would freeze in place, and I would need to take a glove off and use my fingernail, or some other hard item, to punch the button in, in order to collapse the poles. This happened enough to warrant mentioning it.

The poles don't fit well on packs when completely collapsed. Yes, you can keep the 'handle' portion extended, and they will fit between two straps on the side of packs.

I have been pleased with their durability and strength, as I mentioned using them with heavy packs in steep terrain for a 30 day trip. Those comments that I put up were strictly on the function of this particular design.

Regarding the corrosion:

KR wrote:
Someone told me this got fixed in a redesign, so I wonder what the latest is.


Bottom line: They don't carry well in your hand, so make sure to have room in/on your pack. If you do manage to carry them in your hand (which a lot of people prefer), they don't offer the same benefits as 2 or 3 section poles, like using them to lean on mid-pitch, or to push through flats.

Hope this clarifies any confusion. :thumpsup:

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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 8:08 pm 
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KR wrote:
Here's clarification:

With the poles extended, the buttons would freeze in place, and I would need to take a glove off and use my fingernail, or some other hard item, to punch the button in, in order to collapse the poles. This happened enough to warrant mentioning it.

If you do manage to carry them in your hand (which a lot of people prefer), they don't offer the same benefits as 2 or 3 section poles, like using them to lean on mid-pitch, or to push through flats.

Hope this clarifies any confusion. :thumpsup:


I ride in mitts usually, so I'm used to taking them on/off in cold temps. I guess it just doesn't seem like a big deal to push this button in.

The second part is more confusing, if you were carrying in your hand, why wouldn't they offer those benefits?


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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:32 pm 
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tiltedworld wrote:
The second part is more confusing, if you were carrying in your hand, why wouldn't they offer those benefits?



When carrying the 2 or 3 section BD poles, they are usually about 30-60 cm long, which I can use to lean on and use to push. Sometimes I'll leave these poles extended a bit longer, to aid even more in those categories (leaning and pushing). I've found this to be a huge benefit; so much so that I prefer the 2 section poles over the three section ones. When fully collapsed, they are still a great size for leaning and pushing, yet they are small enough to be carried comfortably in my hand.

And, the bottom section has the added benefit of expanded use with the BD snow saw.

The fully collapsed Compactor poles cannot do these things, and it's a bit of fiddling to get these things to open up in order to 'lean' or 'push'.

For me, the two section BD poles are it. One fliplock, that's it, super simple, great benefits. Plus, if I REALLY want, I can strap them to my pack like any other pole.

(To get in on the subthread, whippets are nice on the end of a two section pole. 8) )

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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:36 pm 
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This post is great cause it reminded me to dry out my poles from my thanksgiving tour! And they were still wet inside!

It was a good day early on, and later too once lifts spun.


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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:39 pm 
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Tap wrote:
This post is great cause it reminded me to dry out my poles from my thanksgiving tour! And they were still wet inside!


They'll keep moisture for months. Don't ever store poles collapsed, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:03 pm 
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KR wrote:
When carrying the 2 or 3 section BD poles, they are usually about 30-60 cm long, which I can use to lean on and use to push. Sometimes I'll leave these poles extended a bit longer, to aid even more in those categories (leaning and pushing). I've found this to be a huge benefit; so much so that I prefer the 2 section poles over the three section ones. When fully collapsed, they are still a great size for leaning and pushing, yet they are small enough to be carried comfortably in my hand.


Makes sense. I never use them that way and would assume if I were to use them in my hand it would be to push at full length. I'm going to sell my Variants (smaller 2-piece) because I don't like how they fit on my pack.

KR wrote:
And, the bottom section has the added benefit of expanded use with the BD snow saw.


I just attach to the grip via straps with a G3 saw.

KR wrote:
The fully collapsed Compactor poles cannot do these things, and it's a bit of fiddling to get these things to open up in order to 'lean' or 'push'.

For me, the two section BD poles are it. One fliplock, that's it, super simple, great benefits. Plus, if I REALLY want, I can strap them to my pack like any other pole.


I understand. Still seems like I will get the Compactors if the way I would use them attaches well to my packs, or I will opt for the Expedition and add a swatch of grip tape and requisite duct tape supply :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:29 pm 
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FWIW, I can extend my poles enough to secure them to the side of my pack. Also, with my Hestra leather gloves, I can collapse the poles without any issue (haven't tried in the snow yet).
Image
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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:42 pm 
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tiltedworld wrote:
and requisite duct tape supply :mrgreen:


This is necessary, in order to look like you know what you're doing. I get people fooled all the time because I have duct tape on my poles.
:headbang:

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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:57 pm 
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fitit wrote:
FWIW, I can extend my poles enough to secure them to the side of my pack. Also, with my Hestra leather gloves, I can collapse the poles without any issue (haven't tried in the snow yet).


What do they look like if packed the other way round? I like the idea of blunt things rather than sharp pointy thing poking me in the head as much as possible and usually ride with the pole the other way around. Can't be avoided with an ax or whippet, but can be with just poles.


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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 2:01 pm 
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Tiltedworld, for my pack, I would probably have to take the baskets off to do that because my pocket is for a drink, however I could probably cram them down there if I really wanted to.


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 Post subject: Re: BD Compactor Poles
PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 2:24 pm 
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Those 3/4 baskets should be small enough. None of the packs I use have that. It's either 2 side straps or ice ax loops and daisy chain loops/clips.


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