28 June 2009

Alien cams allegedly failed below rated strength

Aric Datesman , a volunteer moderator at the Rockclimbing.com forums has tested 13 brand new Alien cams, purchased in May 2009, and according to his report 8 out of these 13 cams failed below their rated strength. Additionally, he tested 9 'used' Alien cams - and reportedly 7 of these failed below their rated strength. Datesman concluded "there appears to be a high probability that there is faulty gear [Aliens] out in circulation and people should be aware of this and take whatever precautions they deem necessary to ensure their safety". Before publishing Datesman claims to have shown the results to CCH (the manufacturers of Aliens) to give them the opportunity to respond - it appears CCH has not responded and over a month has passed since the results were published.

The image shows how the brazing of the Alien in the middle has only partially filled the enclosure. Datesman suggests that this could explain why the cam failed below its rated strength. Image by Aric Datesman, from the rockclimbing.com forums

In 2006 CCH issued a recall notice for over 4000 cams after it was discovered that some cams were "improperly brazed".