Looking for a new climbing harness - 75% spur removals on doug firs, but also SRT, etc

27RMT0N

Member
So I'm in the market for a new climbing harness, and the only shop with any selection around me that has a showroom (Wesspur) is closed due to COVID so I can't go and look in person. Buying something sight-unseen over the internet, that you trust your life to and will wear daily is a little unfortunate, but that's the situation.

I'm in the PNW, in a forest of doug firs and like the title says probably 75% of my work is just fir removals on spurs. The rest is other species: cedar, alder, maple, madrone and 25% pruning, limbing up, building clearance, etc. A lot of the time I'm working on hillsides, in the brush, on multiple trees and that means scrambling around with my climbing gear on to get around. It's more like forestry climbing rather than residential work. I've found gear with elastic tends to get snagged or stretch out, and gear with velcro doesn't last super long with all the on/off and chips/dust from all the removals I do, even with blowing it out at the end of the day. For example I have velcro uppers and lowers on my spurs for comfort, but it wears out and loses it's hold, requiring replacement more often than I'd like. The other feature I really want is a harness with a good strong webbing at the waist for attaching a transPorter on my right side, which often has a 20"/28" saw hanging on it.

(my dislike of velcro and elastic may be overblown, if you think I'm wrong there certainly let me know!)

Does such a harness exist? I'm not really worried about cost or weight. The Buckingham Ergovation is the closest thing I've found so far but it seems to have velcro on the leg straps that make me wonder. It seems you can buy replacement parts for it however so maybe that's not a big deal. The 'toughest' looking saddles seem to be from Weaver or other models of Buckingham, but some of those look like they belong back in the 1950s... then on the other end of the spectrum you have the lightweight saddles like the TreeMotion which would be cool if I were doing detail prunes of oaks in wide open lawns, but that's just not the work where I am.

Any suggestions or thoughts are appreciated.
 
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Jehinten

Well-Known Member
I have no experience with the harness other than hanging in the garage, as it just came in the mail last night, but I just picked up the monkeybeaver. The only velcro is inside the leg loops for optional extra padding. I'm pretty sure the transporter is August's go-to for holding his saw and he built his saddle to accommodate it. The only elastic is to keep the leg loops from riding up, if they stretched or broke they'd be like all other saddles with floating leg loops.

I know there are plenty of other opinions on this harness that are more informed than my own.
 

Jonny

Well-Known Member
I think the Velcro on the Ergovation leg straps is just used for adjustments. Once it fits right, there’s the cobra type buckles on the legs for donning and doffing.

I know the TreeMotion earned it’s reputation as a good pruning saddle but I’m very comfortable in it on flip line and spurs as well.
I like the looks of this Ergovation, and currently on sale at Sherrill.
59A04E2E-82BC-4FD5-A417-C97BA6BDEA8F.jpeg
 

rico

Well-Known Member
Redwood and Fir removal guy myself. I would recommend a TreeMo or a Monkey Beaver.. Both are exceptional removal harnesses, hold larger saw very well, and are super comfy......
 

27RMT0N

Member
For some reason the MonkeyBeaver saddle wasn't really on my radar as much, probably because they are only selling direct now rather than through Wesspur/TreeStuff/Sherrill so I wasn't seeing it while browsing. And I know this is an ridiculous reason, but I think the name is kind of stupid... that said it's probably the top of my list now.
 

27RMT0N

Member
Haha, nothing a seam-ripper can't remove, or another patch couldn't cover ;)

(and you know, at the end of the day it should be more about performance than looks....)
 

Merle Nelson

Well-Known Member
When they first came out you could custom order one. Now that things have slowed down in the economy and perhaps they have caught up with demand they might do custom requests again - no patches.
 

Jehinten

Well-Known Member
Don't worry about the patches, you can't see them while your wearing it anyways.


As for availability, as of right now only lg and xl are in stock. You can preorder the other sizes
 

27RMT0N

Member
As for availability, as of right now only lg and xl are in stock. You can preorder the other sizes
Yah, I just saw that when I checked their website. I'd be a medium, so that means a wait which I can deal with. I wonder how long before they are back in stock.

It's probably the saddle I'm going to get. I figure I'll watch this thread for a little longer in case anyone else had some other insights.
 

rico

Well-Known Member
What’s the differences between the MB and the Onyx?
The MB has a larger backpad which sits on the hips much better than the Onyx.. The side dees are very different on these 2 saddles and if your a spur climber get the MB. The placement and angle of the side dees on the Onyx can make for some discomfort when doing spar work for a long time..... The MB is a true working saddle, is much more supportive than the Onyx, and in my view has a much better layout for us west coast conifer guys. Plus your supporting August who is one of the best that this industry has to offer (both as a man and a climber).

I no longer ride a MB but it is a fantastic saddle and I really enjoyed my time with it....Just found the MCRS and the TreeMo S.light to fit me a little better.....

Reply
 
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27RMT0N

Member
I just want to take a step back and say I certainly didn't mean to derail this discussion into names and logos. Performance is what matters to me which is why especially with your recommendation @rico, I am 99% sure right now it's the saddle I'm going to be buying. I enjoy the videos August puts out, I've traveled through his neck of the woods many times and have a great deal of respect for how he works. I'm sure it's a great piece of gear.
 

rico

Well-Known Member
I would be shocked if you don't end up loving the MB 27RMTON. It's a kickass saddle that once dialed in will provide a super supportive and comfy ride....The set up on the leg pads is a little different than most saddles so pay attention to getting em right and you will be GTG...


 
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27RMT0N

Member
I ordered the MonkeyBeaver last night. Of course it's on back order as mentioned in this thread so I'm not sure when I'll actually get it, but after I've got a few weeks on it, I'll try and report back here with my impressions. Thanks for the assistance and I'm sure those adjustment videos will be useful.
 

Jehinten

Well-Known Member
The only elastic is to keep the leg loops from riding up, if they stretched or broke they'd be like all other saddles with floating leg loops.

Just a note, I was incorrect on the elastic. The straps that hold the legs in place are webbing, not elastic.
 

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