DMM The Bug
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Single double or twin ropes - the Bug belay device can handle them all. The massively radiused edges are easy on your ropes whilst the ribbed profile improves grip and dissipates heat.
DMM The Bug Reviews
Reviewed by Jonathan (Birmingham) on 2006-01-04:
General comments: The DMM bug is a good all round device. It works well and has a reasonable level of friction. It does not jam easily, even after catching a fall, or when used on narrow end of HMS. It does not grab the rope while letting out or taking in when you don't want it too. I have owned one for many years, as well as using many other devices. It is my favourite device. It has stood the wear well, with a little scratching and some noticeable wear where the rope runs over the edges.
Rope size does have to be reasonably accurate. Smaller ropes (thin twins or doubles) are a bit sloppy, while the larger ropes (abseil in particular) can be hard, or even impossible to get in, due to the rather square shape. Some other devices do not suffer from this as badly as they have a more tapered shape. The DMM now does a smaller size for thin ropes, but there is still not one for big fat ropes.
In all a good device that does not suffer from grabbing, jamming or excessive wear with nice level of friction for all situations. As it should it has worked faultlessly in every situation.
Pros: No Grabbing.
Reviewed by Brian Hamilton (Scotland) on 2011-02-25:
General comments: Trust me when I tell you kids that you have it easy, back in my day a belay plate consisted of the lid from a tin of baked beans with raggedy holes punched in it. Control was non-existent and heat dissipation was a concept for philosophy and deemed beyond the realms of possibility.
Fast forward ten years and now look at what you have, a sculpted work of art with a flawless anodised coating, plastic coated wire retainer and a fiendishly designed shape that is curvaceous yet grips the rope with the bite of a bulldog.
This really is an amazing piece of kit, I gave mine a good test at the climbing wall and was delighted at how easy it is to work, feeding the rope through is a breeze, the Bug happily plays out the rope. As soon as it is put into play the Bug snaps down tight against the krab and holds the rope nice and tight. Extended lowering doesn't seem to cause an issue with heat build up or cause any wear to the anodised coating. Loving it.
I used to abseil with a figure-8 as belay devices of old gave little control, the Bug is in a different league and is happy to be uilised for abseiling, perfect for a bit of route pre-inspection or some gardening.
I have yet to see how the Bug performs coping with leader falls (think big muscly dude falling on sawed off RP's and unstripping gear like the zip of a brides dress coming down) but I am positive it will give limited slip to take the strain of the fall of the precious protection.
The Bug seems to the be the industry standard and there is nothing more you could ask for, flawlessly designed and built and easy enough for a monkey to use.
Pros: As above
Cons: None so far