Edelrid Eddy| $117 edelrid.de.com ★★★
The Eddy is no Grigri 2, and it costs about $25 more. Need to read more? OK: The Eddy, Edelrid's new auto-locking device, intends to improve on what could be perceived as Grigri weaknesses—those being the danger of holding the lever open or not clipping the two side plates together.
Admittedly, there are definite safety improvements with the Eddy. First, the two side plates lock into place with a click, eliminating the chance of only clipping through one side plate. And unlike the Grigri, which relies on rope friction to engage a cam to hold the rope in place, the Eddy uses rope friction to engage a cam that locks into place. I can see how these features improve safety, however, the Eddy snagged up all tasks, from lowering to feeding line. I experimented with holding the Eddy in different hand positions, but the device inevitably and invariably locked up, leaving me scrambling to figure out how to unlock the cam (press it down, and it will release) to continue feeding slack.
The Eddy, a rather heavy bugger at 12.4 ounces (Grigri 2 is 5.9 ounces), will also lock if the user pulls the lever all the way back. This eliminates the risk of the belayer dropping you because he freaked and yarded on the lever. I found this feature especially annoying, and even superfluous to safety. It makes the lever's range of arc that unlocks the cam extremely small -- you have to pull it back just right in order to lower your partner.
To sum up, the Eddy is okay. It will catch and lower any climber—even on, thank god, ropes down to 9 millimeters! However, compared to the no nonsense Grigri 2, I found the Eddy difficult to use.
ABOUT THE RATING
The Eddy received three out of five stars because it is expensive, heavier and not as easy to use as the Grigri 2.
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