Chouinard piolet...if we had only known

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RDB

Social climber
Great Basin
Topic Author's Original Post - Apr 12, 2019 - 09:24am PT
https://www.ebay.com/itm/173863916164?_trksid=p2471758.m4704


$60 in 1972 would be worth $370 today.
1970 $50 US Savings Bond would be worth $257 today
Roots

Mountain climber
Redmond, Oregon
Apr 12, 2019 - 09:36am PT
TFPU

LOL it's much higher now!
RDB

Social climber
Great Basin
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 12, 2019 - 09:46am PT


I still have this 55cm bamboo. Photo was 45 years ago!
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Apr 12, 2019 - 09:48am PT
Absolute peanuts...a year ago a Mickey Mantle 1952 rookie baseball card in mint condition sold for $2.88 million...and just about as useful.
RDB

Social climber
Great Basin
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 12, 2019 - 09:49am PT
I was thinking 2.8 million might be useful.
$600.+ not so much.

$1400? That got my attention :)
Nick Danger

Ice climber
Arvada, CO
Apr 12, 2019 - 11:42am PT
I broke the point off a Chouinard piolet and an alpine hammer, each about half way up a pitch of ice, so I have no love for these things at all. However, my 1970 BMW R75/5 is still going as strong and as reliable as ever. Some old tech is better than other old tech.
Roots

Mountain climber
Redmond, Oregon
Apr 12, 2019 - 12:27pm PT
$1,400!! Yikes...but Donini is correct; it's just peanuts compared to what other collectibles go for.
Fritz

Social climber
Choss Creek, ID
Apr 12, 2019 - 12:41pm PT
T Hocking! Per your question:
Hey Fritz is that you selling it off?


Nope, but RDB has a collection that makes mine look pathetic. We did some climbing together back in the mid-70's, but he kept doing ice-climbing & big peaks, after I had a revelation that I was "gunna-die" if I kept doing alpinism.

My photo of RDB at a Mt. Deborah bivy back in 1976. Note the Chouinard Piolet in the background.


I've sold a couple of my wood piolets in the last two years & now I'm down to only 7, including my original, which I did a little refinishing on last year. Here's my beat to schist 1974 vintage 60 cm piolet & my bought in 1969 Stubai Nanga Parbat, my first ice axe.


Wow! $1400 for a Chouinard axe. Perfect & Mint unused, command a "Gud" price.
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Apr 12, 2019 - 03:23pm PT
Still got mine. Never give it up!!!!
I want it buried with me. . . oops, I'm gonna be smoked. What shud I do????
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Apr 12, 2019 - 03:26pm PT
Hickory smoked will work nicely.
AP

Trad climber
Calgary
Apr 12, 2019 - 04:17pm PT
So what was the first useful axe? I can remember owning a Forrest Lifetime in 1980(?) that was OK with the drooped pick.
Lorenzo

Trad climber
Portland Oregon
Apr 12, 2019 - 04:50pm PT
If someone wants to buy my 70 cm Chouinard-Frost Piolet for$1,400 Iíll ship it free next day delivery.
RDB

Social climber
Great Basin
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 12, 2019 - 06:41pm PT
seemed useful at the time.. 1975?

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.php?topic_id=2223904&tn=0&mr=0

"So what was the first useful axe?"

If you are talking water fall ice "as useful". Have to be Chouinard's piolet. Lowe and Weiss did Bridalveil with piolets and a north wall hammer in '73. Solid WI5+ / 6 even today. I think it is Will Gadd who says ice doesn't get any harder technically than 5+.

Nomic is just a very refined Terro if you are talking picks. Rooster was ahead of its time with knuckle protection and a "rest". Forrest Lifetime was just a copy of the Simond Chacal. Chacal was in many ways just an over grown Terro with a revered drop pick off a Chouinard Piolet.
tradmanclimbs

Ice climber
Pomfert VT
Apr 13, 2019 - 05:50am PT
Simond Chakal 45cm with hammer was the best climbing ice tool of the early to late mid 80's
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Apr 13, 2019 - 07:12am PT
^^^^^Footfangs too!
RDB

Social climber
Great Basin
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 13, 2019 - 08:27am PT
Simond Chacal was innovative in that the pick was a reverse curve and easier to clean. But in reality it was just an over grown version of the earlier McInnes-Peck Terrodactyl.

The Chacal and the latter adze version, the Barracuda, offered as technical advancement over earlier tools with replaceable, reverse curved picks, which all modern tools now use and the better durability. Improved shaft coverings for a better grip were also a step forward.


1st ascent of Bridalveil. Jeff Lowe and Mike Weiss did the first ascent (and FFA) of Bridalveil (WI6) with 70cm bamboo Piolets and a short, curved pick, north wall hammer in 1973.


Footfangs? I don't think Footfangs offered any advantage over Chouinard or SMC rigid crampons if you used a rigid soled boot. The advantage of a Footfang was you could use them with a shitty boot and still climb ice easy enough.

The advantage or disadvantage of vertical front point (Footfang) over horizontal front points is still argued today. Reality is, depends on the quality and temp of the ice which front point design works better at the moment.

If nothing else we have learned in the last 50 years that how well crampons are attached to the boot makes as much or more difference in crampon performance as nuances in the design.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Apr 13, 2019 - 10:02am PT
Footfangs? I don't think Footfangs offered any advantage over Chouinard or SMC rigid crampons if you used a rigid soled boot. The advantage of a Footfang was you could use them with a shitty boot and still climb ice easy enough.

The advantage or disadvantage of vertical front point (Footfang) over horizontal front points is still argued today. Reality is, depends on the quality and temp of the ice which front point design works better at the moment.

If nothing else we have learned in the last 50 years that how well crampons are attached to the boot makes as much or more difference in crampon performance as nuances in the design.

THIS IS ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW! I love me some succinctness!
tradmanclimbs

Ice climber
Pomfert VT
Apr 13, 2019 - 11:50am PT
INMOP foot fangs climbed about 50% better than my Chiounard rigids. I take it RDB perhaps has not been on the ice in awhile... New Cyborgs and the cassins that I have climb about twice as good as my Foot fangs did.....
RDB

Social climber
Great Basin
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 13, 2019 - 01:07pm PT


The info on who first had a reverse curved pick made up by Simond for a Chacal is here on ST if I remember correctly. Gordon Smith maybe?


http://www.alpinist.com/doc/web07f/newswire-jorasses-scots-desmaison

RDB

Social climber
Great Basin
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 13, 2019 - 01:35pm PT
TMC sez
I take it RDB perhaps has not been on the ice in awhile...

Au contraire laddy. I prefer Petzl (not the Lynx) or Grivel myself over BD shite. You might have noticed that Stinger failing at an inopportune moment :) But the Camp version is OK. Never liked the Footfang as it was too heavy and sucked on rotten Canadian ice. Anything current climbs better than those POS. Breaking is still a problem for stainless and BD in particular however. Stainless is a gimic...simply because it is the most recycled and cheap steel to source. Good boots back in the day like a Haderer or Koflach would help most crampons, and when fit correctly, climb better.

Been lucky enough to have climbed with most every brand name crampon, tool and decent ice boot in the last 10 years including all the current versions. Benefit of reviewing and designing ice gear.

But lots of choices today. Better crampon and tool designs. Most all of them will climb circles around our original gear from 40 years ago. Everyone gets an opinion on what works for them. Better gear and clothing is the major reason many of us old silver backs can still pull hard ice and mixed.

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