Presented last summer at the Outdoor trade fair, the Click Up self-braking insurer of the Italian brand Climbing Technology immediately won over all those who had then been able to demonstrate its use on the stand. We were finally able to have a test copy. First impressions and verdict.
Self-braking belay devices are one of the accessories that the most manufacturers have looked into in recent years. Among the latest to date, we had already been able in these columns to test the Edelrid Zap O Mat and more recently the Mammut Smart. This is because the market is competitive and the arch-dominant Grigri de Petzl sees his supremacy challenged, no doubt because of his lack of development for 15 years! Today, climbers are looking for something that is lighter, simpler and more functional and less expensive … and something new! With the Click Up, it is served.
Maker : Climbing Technology (Italie)
Model : Click Up
Weight : 120 grams
Usable rope diameter : 9 à 10,5 mm
Rate : around 45 €
Today it is the turn of the striking novelty of the Outdoor 2009 fair, the Climbing Technology Click Up. This is a self-braking device, the particularity of which is that it does not have any moving parts or need for action on a lever (such as for example the Petzl grigri, the Edelrid Eddy, the Faders SUM or the Trango Cinch) or other device to unlock. In addition, its name comes from the fact that its manipulation (locking-unlocking) causes a characteristic metallic audible “click” which warns the user of the change of position of the device even if he is not looking at the device. system. Finally, the best for last, even if it is installed upside down, the Click Up In spite of everything, works by default like a classic brake, unlike all the other devices which do not work!
In the leader’s belay position, the carabiner is placed in the lower part, under the characteristic lug of the Click Up. In this configuration, the climber uses the device as a conventional brake (8 or well for example) by using both hands to slide the rope into the device. The application of a sudden tension (fall) causes the device to rotate slightly on itself and it tilts so that the carabiner “goes up” passing the lug (and making the characteristic “click”!) And brakes / locks the rope. As long as the Click Up remains in this configuration, we can restore slack by pressing lightly on the device to make it tilt again and release a little pressure on the rope. However, as soon as the pressure is released, the device automatically returns to the locked position.
To return to the classic belay position, nothing could be simpler: all you have to do is release the tension on the rope and replace the Click Up in its initial position by rotating it slightly and above all by pushing it upwards in order to make it pass the lug again and replace the carabiner in the lower part of the device.
I know, it all seems terribly complicated to read … but we have verified in use that it is very simple and intuitive!
In the field
The installation of the rope of the device is simple (with in particular a marking of the direction of the rope on the device itself) and easy, even with a rope of large diameter. Ditto for the passage of the safety carabiner in the Click Up and the installation of the assembly on the trigger guard ring of the harness.
First meters of climbing for the climber: the sliding of the rope in the device is smooth, smooth, as would happen with an 8! It is really very pleasant. Thanks to the small leaf spring inside the Click Up, the rope remains perfectly in line and the device remains in the “belay” position. My climber is starting to ripen his forearms, seeing that he is in a very resistant 8a! And what had to happen happens: he ends up falling … As soon as the sudden tension of the impact of the fall, the Click Up emits its metallic “click”: it swung into the blocking position immediately and even with a firm grip of the rope on my part. As with any device of this type, braking / locking is instantaneous and so do not forget to energize the climber’s fall by being yourself, belayer, mobile and dynamic to absorb part of the energy while moving!
My climber wants to pull on the rope and climb back up to the anchor point that stopped his fall, a few meters higher. He “pumps” himself by pulling himself on the rope, instructs me to swallow the slack and block it. the Click Up is also proving imperial and super reassuring in the maneuver. A real joy !
Here is the time to start again: the climber gets back on the holds and releases the tension of the rope, tries to start again … but I did not succeed in putting the device back in the belay position and the slack therefore does not come well ! It is therefore just on this maneuver of putting back in place in “belay” mode that the new user of the Click Up do his apprenticeship. Incidentally, said learning lasts about 30 seconds, since once we have properly integrated the movement to be made (small pivot / push of the device forward and up), we never miss it, even under pressure. by having to comply in two seconds! And we know that we have succeeded there also in an auditory way, the famous “click” also occurring in this sense.
At the top, the climber clips into the belay and hangs on the rope. Re-click of the device that goes into blocking mode. It only remains for me to “mill”. Easy to say ? No, easy to do! Pressure with just the right amount of force to apply for it is not a barbaric exercise but that a simple flick is not enough (it’s more secure as well!), And presto, it goes down by itself with very easy to control scrolling speed.
Personally, for a first use, I am convinced. You just have to integrate this small movement to go back from blocking mode to belay mode, but for the rest it’s super simple and intuitive. So I pass the device to the climber with well lactified arms so that he can ensure his turn with it. A quick little brief on how the trick works and it’s time to maneuver. Thanks to my warning, he won’t even be trapped by the above-described manipulation and will remain silent when his leader descends … “It’s really good!” “. Coming from a professional state graduate and BE trainer in CREPS, I believe that the judgment is valid.
All I have to do now is test the device with a thin rope, since the user manual allows the use of 9 to 10.5 mm ropes. For the fluidity of belay, no problem of course! But what about braking / locking? Well the Click Up behaves in exactly the same way with a new 9.1 mm rope as before with one of more than 10 mm swollen by wear and fluff!
After this first test, the results are largely positive. Very easy to understand, intuitive to use, very safe to use, the Click Up immediately ranks among the best devices tested by us. Furthermore, allowing the use of ropes 9 to 10.5 mm, it is among the most versatile in the field.
Sold around 45 euros, it is in a rather affordable price range and could well find a place in the sun if its distribution follows …
– Insurance fluidity of the leader
– Ease of learning
– Braking-locking also effective over the entire range of recommended rope diameter
– Field of use limited to the cliff or the hall by its very nature of self-braking and single rope.
– Ease of obtaining it ???
Technical information and videos for using Climbing Technology Click Up on the manufacturer’s website :