Grivel 3.16 Poles
8.42 oz per pole
These poles are not reliable: the lower locking mechanism…
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: 70 euros
These poles are not reliable: the lower locking mechanism can fail under intensive use and can be dangerous. The lower baskets are easily lost, which is very problematic on snow trips.
They look nice, have comfy grips, and the design is innovative, but reliability is key for such a product therefore I would not recommend these for anyone.
- Innovative design
- Comfy grip
- Not reliable
- Lower locking mechanism is flawed and fails
- Baskets can get loose and be lost
I have been using these poles for a while in light use. I chose them because Grivel has a good reputation with reliable serious mountain products. I was shocked to see the poles fall apart during a 10-day intensive hike.
Those poles are not lightweight as I chose them first and foremost for reliability.
However, different parts of the poles broke down one after the other:
1) The lower locking mechanism is of poor design with only a small metal portion that moves to lock the poles. After repeated use this metal part gets worn out and:
- can get stuck in retracted position leading to possible loss of the lower section of the pole
- can break down (in half in my case) which gradually leads to wearing out the upper tube itself
- could of course break down entirely (although it did not happen to me), which in an exposed location could lead to dramatic consequences.
2) The Saturn baskets can easily fall off completely out of the sticks due to the vibration on hard ground: there is nothing beside maybe glue to hold them on the stick. Losing the basket when needing to cross hard steep snow field is not a great experience.
3) The basket can disassemble on its own (I don't know how it happened in my case) and the largest part can then get lost.
4) Some plastic part of the lower locking mechanism can break down, probably due to manipulation in cold weather.
Conclusions: These poles are NOT reliable and should be avoided. Moreover, the customer service of Grivel hasn't responded to any of my mails, which is scary for a company that delivers mountain security equipment.
I liked their equipment until now, but will be careful the next time I buy one of their products, especially if it is out of their core competencies and new.