Classic Ice Primer- Chouinard Catalog 1968

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Messages 33 - 52 of total 569 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Doug Robinson

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Dec 21, 2008 - 05:03pm PT
Somehow I've always thought the ice pin in YC's hand on that catalog cover was not a warthog but a way old-school one that looks basically like a very long vertical blade pin. Somebody gave me one recently; when I'm posting again, I'll show it off.

My fuzzy recollection is that Warthogs didn't come along until later, like early 70s. YC liked em enough to make his own; I always wanted a bomber Salewa screw.

I'm still climbing with my 70 cm bamboo Piolet. What a beautiful tool! Ultimately esthetic hand forging, fine balance, and over the years grain rises in the bamboo to improve grip. All the wood-handled axes (and ice hammers) dampened vibration nicely, helping the pick to stick in brittle ice. But when Yvon started comparing the bamboo handle to a fine fly rod, I thought he had gone round the bend.

That Salewa "coathanger" ice screw was way sketchy. On the water ice FA of the V-Notch with Yvon, he placed one for his only pro halfway up a pitch. Coming up behind, I pulled the shank end right out. It had snapped off at the top of the corkscrew. That was the end of that for me. Except for pulling wine corks.
F10

Trad climber
e350
Dec 21, 2008 - 08:20pm PT
DR,

You're not the only one still using a 70 cm bambooo Piolet,

I just love the feel of it
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 21, 2008 - 10:07pm PT
Wasn't long before he too was selling a "dayglow metal monster!" LOL
Doug Robinson

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Dec 22, 2008 - 02:36am PT
Steve, let's not be hasty here. He never sold a dripping-in-orange, clang-a-bang monster like the MSR "negative hooking-angle" implement that was all designed wrong-way-around to arrest a fall rather than positively holding to prevent falling in the first place. Nope, not the Chouinard style.
apogee

climber
Dec 22, 2008 - 02:56am PT
"About that french technique - did anybody ever really use it?"

Yep, as an aspiring alpinist oh-so-long-ago, I studied 'On Ice' word by word, and practiced all those frenchy names assiduously. I came to realize that there was much truth in YC's rock vs. snow/ice descriptions of body positions, and still think about them when I scramble through the mountains.

Learning those techniques never resulted in me becoming another Twight or Gadd, but it sure was a formative experience...
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 22, 2008 - 10:19pm PT
Time for the Ice Screw Parade.


Starting with the scrawny Marwa!



The thinest will take a cork out and are too delicate to believe. Falling on one.......even aiding on one, yow!


Classic late sixties screws and drive-ins. Charlet-Mosers on the bottom. Salewa tube up top and frst generation Chouinard-Salewa Warthog drive-in.


Darker second generation Salewa Warthog on botttom with two Camp screws below early Salewa tube.


Doug Robinson

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Dec 22, 2008 - 10:40pm PT
Nice collection Steve.

After my experience with the snapped-off Charlet-Moser ice screw, I went into the Ski Hut in Berkeley and bought out their stock of a dozen of those Marwas -- just to be sure no one accidentally used them for pro.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 23, 2008 - 12:19pm PT
Marwa screw: I broke mine off absent-mindedly screwing it into a picknick table.
Didn't even get to try it in the wine bottle...

That last Warthog is art.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 27, 2008 - 03:06pm PT
I have been waiting patiently for a Warthog to end up as a dagger in some low budget sci-fi horror flick.

Doug- those delicate imported screws never had a chance considering the way we often used to put them in, using the ice axe or alpine hammer like a brace and bit. Rock out and snap!
Fritz

Trad climber
Hagerman, ID
Dec 27, 2008 - 07:09pm PT
Steve: Thank you for the awesome line-up of old ice-screws you posted. I have not figured out the trick of posting photos here, but the Warthog I asked about is all but identical to the Salewa Warthog in your last photo.

However it is clearly embossed Chouinard USA on one side and Wart Hog on the other. One is currently in a group of Chouinard screws on E-BAy. Auction # is 160306090912.

Yes they are mine. Fritz

Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 29, 2008 - 11:35am PT
If your Warthog has a bronze finish on it rather than black then you likely have a third generation which is even more prop worthy!
Clu

Social climber
Dec 29, 2008 - 06:30pm PT
I along with several from Mt. Traders in Berkeley signed up for Yvon's 3 day clinic on ice near Mt. Dana. Rick Sylvester was assisting, $85 (?!) for a 3 day clinic. Yvon had just come out with the N. Wall hammer and cute "Climaxe", the first short tools. Still have my 70cm bamboo and recently picked up a N Wall hammer. Would love to complete the set with a Climaxe.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 29, 2008 - 06:42pm PT
Who wouldn't want to tidy things up that way! LOL
I have an original Piolet and a Zero Northwall Hammer. The Climaxe is pretty spiffy but always seemed like a great way to puncture fabric or flesh at the time. First came out in 1972.
jimknight

Trad climber
Orem, Utah
Dec 30, 2008 - 04:00pm PT
Anyone remember the Nestor Ice Screw? It made a fair dagger. I'll dig one out and make a scan to post, just for grins of course.
Doug Robinson

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Dec 30, 2008 - 04:26pm PT
A Climaxe would make a good collector's item, for sure, but they weren't so, uh, "hot" for climbing. Not enough heft, so they kinda wobbled and dinked around.

The hammer, though -- now that was a tool. My first one was hand forged from a Yo hammer, with a pick about half as big in all dimensions. Shorter, thinner, more delicate, but with the same force behind it. Talk about penetration. Eventually it broke, so I could see why he beefed up the production models.

YC had a Climaxe at his beach shack that came out at low tide and was all scruffy from digging in the sand. He called it the Clam-axe.
jimknight

Trad climber
Orem, Utah
Dec 30, 2008 - 05:17pm PT
Classic story Doug! The Climaxe was too light. I wrapped solder around the head of mine and taped it in place to get the weight up. Okay as a 3rd tool. I climbed with a guy from Lander (Wes Kraus?) who had refit his Climaxe with a longer, framing hammer handle. It worked even better.
east side underground

Trad climber
Hilton crk,ca
Dec 30, 2008 - 05:25pm PT
was that at YC's nice little multi-million dollar "shack" overlooking rights and lefts ? Wish I had a "shack"!!!!!!
F10

Trad climber
e350
Dec 30, 2008 - 07:40pm PT
Actually my Climaxe comes in pretty handy on some alpine routes where you don't need an axe but need to travel a small bit of snow. When you don't need it, tuck it away and it is out of sight but not out of mind.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 30, 2008 - 07:44pm PT
Aesthetics aside, the need for close quarters step cutting capability or palm support on a hammer length tool never convinced me that I had to have one. I lusted after a fiberglass LAS Hummingbird hammer instead.


Classic old school Lee Vining canyon ice shot

Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 30, 2008 - 08:23pm PT
Fiberglas Hummingbird hammer?
The white handled jobber...
Nah, the tubular pick flexed too much and all those short tools were knuckle bangers.

After all of that with tube picks and the hammers,
I liked the Big Bird with an Alpine pick (or the reverse curve banana pick) best.
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