Serenitree

New Member
I was interested in buying the aerial friction brake, my friend had just shared it with me and bought it on sale, and when I went to purchase it a few weeks ago I noticed I couldn’t add it to my cart. I figured it was out of stock, but after a week and half the page didn’t even show up anymore. I called tree stuff and asked when they would have it back in stock. (For anyone who doesn’t know, sherill tree acquired tree stuff and they sell gear and products under the brand name: notch). The person on the phone said “The Aerial friction brake has been discontinued.”
”Really? why?”
“I don’t know....maybe something about broken bollards...not sure.”
”Okay, thanks have a good one.”
I thought it seemed a little sketchy that the person first said they don’t know, then vaguely threw out the information about broken bollards which to me seemed like a really big deal, but they said they weren’t sure if that was why? It seemed to me more likely that they weren’t supposed to say anything about it but they couldnt help but do the right thing and let customers know about this manufacturing mistake.
Anyway I decided to call notch equipment directly, which just ended up being the same number as sherill tree.
They were being real sketchy about it too. I called and asked why it was discontinued, person said they have been getting some feedback about them and they decided to stop selling. I asked for more information and they said they didn’t know. I called back just now to see if I might get someone else, but got the same person and asked them if there was someone else in the notch department who knew more about the afb being discontinued, they said, ”Anyone else’ll just tell you the same thing, Notch just decided to discontinue them.” I said, ”I heard the bollards were breaking on them,” then this person finally said, “Yes they were, we got a number of faulty returns on them.“ I asked why he didn’t say that in the first place. He just said, “I’m sorry I didn’t tell you, but they’ve just been discontinued and that’s that.”

Havent seen much other discussion about it.
 
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Brocky

Well-Known Member
Welcome to the Buzz and for posting about this problem. Sounds like they are just going to let people find out on their own when their brakes break in use.
@bonner1040, would you happen to know what’s going on?
 

Nish

Well-Known Member
Also remember how tempting it is for a consumer to report device malfunction or fault after blatant misuse. The AFB would be easy to abuse, perhaps by overloading it, tossing it down from a tree, or installing it where it will mash up against a nub and deform the side plates. Enough problems of this sort and I'd just discontinue to the product and direct people to the triple thimble or safebloc, which you'd have to feed through the chipper to break.
 
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Tom Dunlap

Here from the beginning
Administrator
The original Belay Spool from BMS that I have Is 100% stainless steel. It's been used for MANY years and is only polished from use, not worn.
 
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Serenitree

New Member
Also remember how tempting it is for a consumer to report device malfunction or fault after blatant misuse. The AFB would be easy to abuse, perhaps by overloading it, tossing it down from a tree, or installing it where it will mash up against a nub and deform the side plates. Enough problems of this sort and I'd just discontinue to the product and direct people to the triple thimble or safebloc, which you'd have to feed through the chipper to break.
True, but it is a relatively new device to be having enough issues to discontinue it. Though I did find it strange that none of the people who had theirs break on them posted about the safety of this device and instead just got their refund or replacement from the company...something to consider...
 

theatertech87

Well-Known Member
I'd be willing to bet that a part of the decision stems from not many being sold either.... just about every time they come up in conversation someone recommends something different, same thing happens with the thunder sling.

I have heard about bent side plates though
 

treebing

Well-Known Member
I'd be willing to bet that a part of the decision stems from not many being sold either.... just about every time they come up in conversation someone recommends something different, same thing happens with the thunder sling.

I have heard about bent side plates though
I hear surprisingly good reviews of the thundersling. I know a few people rave about it. I have never used one but they are still for sale at treestuff.
 

JTree

Well-Known Member
We discontinued the AFB because of slow sales.

Over the years we had some deformations of the bollards, but never a critical failure. In each instance the unit had been used above the SWL, we replaced them all free of charge.
Thanks for the insight. It's a shame. It's been on my list of stuff to get one day for years, but I never got around to it. Such is life.

While we are on the subject of discontinued products, did the throwline reel got discontinued due to slow sales as well? I tell ya, that's a real bummer. I still use mine (I got 2 before they disappeared) all the time (though I hand wind instead of using like an actual reel). Best throwline storage/deployment system ever and it's not available anymore :/
 

Pelorus

Well-Known Member
X2 on the throw line reel.
I bought 2 also years ago, and both are still in use. Outer rims have a few cracks but hoping they will hang in there for another 22 years. (Freedom 80)
 

eyehearttrees

Active Member
Also remember how tempting it is for a consumer to report device malfunction or fault after blatant misuse. The AFB would be easy to abuse, perhaps by overloading it, tossing it down from a tree, or installing it where it will mash up against a nub and deform the side plates. Enough problems of this sort and I'd just discontinue to the product and direct people to the triple thimble or safebloc, which you'd have to feed through the chipper to break.
Would love to see some corroboration of the story of breakage but yeah no matter how you slice it that thing is quoted as like 1k SWL, you *know* someone's going to hit it with dynamic loads well in-excess of 1k (often w/o even knowing it) if someone's mangled one I'd imagine there'd be a better-than-not chance that it was simply their fault, you would(should?) see deformation on that type of thing before it goes I know it's aluminum but still. I like the general 'gist' of the idea, but it just inherently isn't for dynamic anything meaning (imo) it's kinda unsafe to have as a primary anchor holding anything in a tree that can hit dynamic loads of 1k and that's not a hard line to break....
A defect in worksmanship on one is a different story altogether, imagine it'd falter pretty quickly if that were the case, pics of the unit would/should be telling (as-is their absence, if I had the unit in well-taken-care-of shape, and hadn't overloaded it and it broke, I'd certainly be online with pics of it - like I probably will be with over a stitched-splice that's like new yet tearing, MF'ers lol - the lack of pics and the super low SWL of the unit make me immediately place blame on user w/o proof otherwise (I don't see it as a practical tool to be offering in the 1st place because it's just going to be conflated with something that can take negative rigging and it really cannot, hell even working within the SWL I'll bet they advise no negative rigging the side plates are pulley-type not block-type)
[ninja-edit: I said 'negative rigging' but I really mean any rigging that has any significant dynamic component to it and that's almost all downward rigging except controlled, pulley-based stuff IE a smooth frictionless wheel but this thing is inherently a friction-device so it's going to 'get hit with forces' that aren't as predictable anyways, could see the idea working if you made it like 50% larger and out of diesel steel lol, would probably hockle the hell out of ropes but it wouldn't break, as-is though it doesn't seem fit for arb-rigging anchorage at least terminal anchoring maybe you could run it at / near the base as a 'backup break' of sorts?]
 

eyehearttrees

Active Member
We discontinued the AFB because of slow sales.
Couldn't imagine who its 'market' would really be, at its price-point there's just better options for friction-anchors and for wheels, and it's not "a good mix" of the two it's a poor mix, have never used one so can only speculate based off obvious design of it, would love to know if there's any 'odd-ness' to how the friction feels considering it's those (4) hard bends instead of cylindrical..would also imagine it is to rigging ropes what a fig.8 is to climbing ropes..
 

cerviarborist

Very stable member
Is anybody going to moderate this chicken little headline with what seems to be an absolute nothing-burger to substantiate it, by a seemingly new, but familiar sounding poster? Treebuzz is...or should be better than this.
 

Merle Nelson

Well-Known Member
While we are on the subject of discontinued products, did the throwline reel got discontinued due to slow sales as well? I tell ya, that's a real bummer. I still use mine (I got 2 before they disappeared) all the time (though I hand wind instead of using like an actual reel). Best throwline storage/deployment system ever and it's not available anymore :/
Agreed on best..... There were only 300 available to begin with. And Jim the developers interest in providing the product seemed to be tentative even early on. Then many people who spoke of it whined about the price etc. How long will a person who's not in it for the money AND not making enough money on it take insult etc? I bought six or eight - never want to work without it.

I reel mine up and re-shoot. Put a fishing quick snap on beginning of the line so I can flip ends at times - frequently because of how I want rope to enter the tree.

It is finicky about being wound with consistent tension. Through my legs once and wind.
 

RopeShield

Well-Known Member
I made one tough enough to throw out of a tree.
Winder is prime and prime example of people being sheep.
Throw bags, cubes etc not the best tool just the opposite:estudioso:
Remember my honest opinion
 

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