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Beal Stinger 9.4, $175
Summary: The Beal Stinger, imported by Black Diamond, had just the right amount of stiffness for swift clipping — pull up a bight and slap it in. On the downside, that stiffness contributed to noticeable kinkiness and sheath wear after three or four days of intensive use.
Cons: Kinks easily. Sheath bristles up quickly.
Overall grade: B+
Beal/Black Diamond Equipment: (801) 278-5552, www.bdel.com