Pros and Cons
Filed under:Climbing & Mountaineering, Gear reviews, Petzl, Tibloc 2
Kevin Avery tries out the new version of the Tibloc emergency ascender
The original Tibloc was a great lightweight rope ascender and auto-block device for rescue and hauling situations, however it needed some careful use to avoid damaging the sheath of the rope.
The main problem was that unless it was set properly on the rope (this needed be done manually) then it would slide down the rope. The new Tibloc alleviates this issue by adding a spring-loaded plastic component which actively grabs the rope by pushing against the karabiner. This means that it is always set with the teeth engaged for loading, and this feature alone would convince me to upgrade from the original Tibloc.
The Tibloc 2 is a great piece of kit and weighs very little; it also has the added bonus that it will still grip on icy or muddy ropes and whilst prussic loops will do all the jobs of a Tibloc, they are much less reliable in these kinds of situations. I’d certainly carry a Tibloc for many of my winter activities, such as ski touring and winter mountaineering, as well as my prussic loops.
All in all I’d highly recommend Petzl’s new Tibloc – it is light (Tibloc Mk2 is actually lighter than the original at 34g rather than 37g) and compact and the addition of the spring-loaded plastic component makes it much more user (and rope) friendly. It maybe not as versatile as prussic loops but more reliable in certain situations and quite often, I actually carry both.