Positioner vs zillon

colb

Well-Known Member
Location
Florida
I used the zillion once. Smoothest adjuster I've used. I started with a simple mechanical grab, then went to a hitch climber/hitch cord, and now use an akimbo. I have not used a BOLA or the ART Positioner.
 

TreeVB

Well-Known Member
Location
Boise, Idaho
I have used each for an extended amount of time. Long enough to let you know you can’t go wrong with either. Both are super smooth and very compact (zillon slightly longer but not really noticeable). Only gripe with the positioner is that depending on your angle from TIP will decide how the unit sits against your saddle and can activate it if you aren’t paying attention. Not enough to initiate a fall but enough to make you pucker. I’m currently using a positioner and will continue to replace clutches as needed. If I ever end up loosing it I will probably get a zillon again just to change it up. Both are great units.
 

Jonny

Well-Known Member
Location
Buffalo
I can’t give a comparison since I’ve never used a Positioner, but I love the Zillon. Definitely keeping that one, crazy smooth and easy. Got caught in the rain a couple times and didn’t seem to change much. I sometimes wish it had a swivel. Aside from not being midline attachable, it works great on DdRT with a long lanyard.

I’ve heard the Positioner is amazing too, stuff from ART seems to be really well thought out.
 

rope-a-dope

Well-Known Member
Location
Asheville
Positioner fan. Never used zillion.
I dont ever have to think about it until it's time for a new clutch. The finger hook part comes off, preventing nearly all snagging and release incidents. I can add slack, deploy my lanyard and take slack all with one hand if I'm holding on in a tough spot.
Performance curve is a little tight if you are descending primarily on this lanyard system, you just learn to focus on the release a bit more in those situations.
 

ATH

Well-Known Member
Location
Ohio
I have no reason to switch from Positioner it works so well...but sounds like people who have Zillion but not Positioner probably have the same opinion. I didn't replace the clutch for years...but went through one just this year (just ordered another).
 

Jonny

Well-Known Member
Location
Buffalo
Is the clutch like the Lockjack clutch? I can see a LJ clutch wearing out after a couple years and running over miles of rope, but I’d expect on a lanyard it’d last for ages.

I think that was part of what made the Trango Cinch such a good lanyard adjuster but a mediocre belay device after it wears a little. Just hard to get similar heat and friction from a lanyard compared to belaying and descending.
 

ATH

Well-Known Member
Location
Ohio
I guess they call it a "cam" - it is a wearable part:
 

TreeVB

Well-Known Member
Location
Boise, Idaho
Is the clutch like the Lockjack clutch? I can see a LJ clutch wearing out after a couple years and running over miles of rope, but I’d expect on a lanyard it’d last for ages.

I think that was part of what made the Trango Cinch such a good lanyard adjuster but a mediocre belay device after it wears a little. Just hard to get similar heat and friction from a lanyard compared to belaying and descending.
I have to replace the clutch every 9-10 months. I do a LOT of end weight reduction pruning and getting to the ends of silver maples I use my lanyard in an SRT cofiguration to help out my horrible rope angles. I’m assuming that puts more wear on it than usual. Also the angle against the clutch in standard lanyard configuration would apply friction/wear against the clutch than on the LJ. That is a full assumption based off what seems to make sense to me.
 

Serf Life

Well-Known Member
Location
Maine Island
How do they fare with super pitchy trees? I use a 2 wrap beeline micho on blaze for hardwoods which is compact and smooth and a micro grab on conifers which leaves much to be desired.
 

Jehinten

Well-Known Member
Location
Evansville
I've only used the positioner although I'd like to try a zillon at some point. There was a quick learning curve, had it down after the first climb, to getting it to release smooth. The biggest trick is to hold the rope below the device with the same hand that is releasing it.

I rarely climb pitchy trees, but to date I've not had a problem with it getting gummed up.


The biggest downside of the positioner is that it can gobble up too much slack. If you leave enough lanyard hanging below it, as you move it can suck up the slack preventing you from moving freely until you let it back out. I run my lanyard in a DEDA configuration so the slack is kept up on my saddle instead of hanging, which prevents this issue.
 

Cereal_Killer

Well-Known Member
Location
Ohio
At the moment I'm using tri tec. About to start experimenting with different ropes
If you're likin it on Tritech you're about to be blown away when you start messing around with others! IMO after lots of experimenting with rope choice Tritech was one of the worst (all kernmantles I tried were bad comparatively).
11.7mm DB is the very best rope choice I found for the little hipster. I'm running Atlantic Gripflex now and dont see myself changing it up again till this rope wears out. I also know Peter DeVris is a huge fan of 11mm 16strand in his hipster and feels the same way about kernmantle in it as I do.

Not making this post to say you're wrong, just that if you're already happy with what I feel is one of the worst you can only go up from there! I'm excited for you to try other ropes in the Hipster, such a great device.
 

Serf Life

Well-Known Member
Location
Maine Island
Throw the hipster in that debate! I'm loving it! So simple and works exactly as I wasn't it to
Good addition! Looks like smooth as butter loosening but more effort/friction when taking up slack compared to the other mechanicals. Have never tried a uni but this looks pretty slick. Wire core friendly?
 

Jonny

Well-Known Member
Location
Buffalo
I’m just a sucker about gear sometimes. I have good quality gear that performs amazingly, and yet still want to try this, that, and the other thing every time I hear good things from reputable reviewers.
Got a Zillon, a Cinch, a Vergo for thin lines, rope grabs, and hitch cords up the wazoo, but still want to try a Positioner and a Hipster. Also I like the Akimbo on a lanyard if it’s not being used on a climbing system.

MUST. RESIST. MORE. GEAR.
There’s worse things to be addicted to, but the struggle is real.
 

Jonny

Well-Known Member
Location
Buffalo
No BDB yet, but dammed if I ain’t sorely tempted!
It’d jive nicely with the Akimbo and RopeRunner and old Zigzag and new Zigzag plus and two Rope Wrenches and HitchHiker2.
I think I’m good for several lifetimes, the problem is I can’t pass on a bargain. I need to stay off eBay and occasionally TreeBay here. None of that stuff I paid retail price for except the Akimbo.
 

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