The UIAA equipment standard provides a baseline for equipment performance in a test lab under controlled conditions on new equipment. Although these test conditions are relevant to the conditions encountered climbing, conditions encountered at the crags and the condition of the equipment are equally important. This recommendation from the UIAA member federation The British Mountaineering Council (BMC) provides vital equipment information that is NOT explicitly addressed in the standard, particularly failure modes of the equipment and recommendations for the use, inspection, maintenance, and retirement of equipment.
Alien Classic 3/8
When Dave Wagner introduced his Alien cams to climbing, the art of technical placements changed. Alien cams are the best thin crack protection. The Alien hybrid units excel in pin scars and technical placements. Dave's design has been and will be copied in the future but so far this original concept stands alone.
|Weight (g / oz)|
Weight (g / oz)
In grams and ounces, the weight, as stated by the manufacturer/brand.
|68.0 g / 2.40 oz|
|Cam Head||4 lobes, single axle|
|Stem||Flexible single stem|
|Sling||(single sling loop)|
|Active Strength|| 6 kN|
|Cam Range (mm / in)|
Cam Range (mm / in)
In millimeters and inches, the maximum dimensions of the cam lobes when shut tight and fully extended. Since the "usable" range is so debatable, all manufacturers now list the full dimensions to avoid selling themselves short.
For offset cams, we'll list the max dimensions possible and then afterwards list each of lobe dimensions.
|Materials||Wire Material: 5/32" 7x19 Stainless|
Ask any seasoned Valley climber to name his favorite small-crack cams, and more likely than not his response will be the Alien. The super-narrow heads and unique cam shapes helped them slip into piton scars and other awkward placements like a hand in a silk glove. When Colorado Custom Hardware ceased production of the treasured piece in 2009, climbers everywhere gasped. But now Spain’s Fixe Hardware has bought the machines and relaunched the Alien with virtually the same design. Meanwhile, Totem, another Spanish company, has come out with a slightly modified version of the Aliens called the Basic Cam. Both are worthy replacements for the originals.
A pictoral representation of the UIAA-125 and EN-12276 standards for frictional anchors (which includes SLCD's [cams] and Ballnuts).