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Oldest mat still in use? (Read 1592 times)

JamieG

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Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 12:57:26 pm
I have decided it is finally time to retire my first ever bouldering mat. A grey Beal mat I bought in around 2006. For a long time it has been my back up pad, useful for levelling landings putting over particularly pointy rocks etc. But would still come on almost every trip out. At 16 years old, I reckon this must have been one of the oldest mats still in regular use in the Peak, but was wondering if anyone can beat it and has an older one still in use. Caveat - this can't be one that just lives under you board.

I'm sorry to see it go, and surprisingly the foam isn't 'that' bad considering its ages. It has definitely lasted better than many other pads and I've got every penny of use out of it.

SA Chris

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#1 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 01:07:00 pm
Must be oldmanmatt. Still in use but not a lot of use :)

Duma

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#2 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 01:21:30 pm
I've got an S7 from 2002 or 3 that still comes out nearly every time I boulder, definitely not "regular" use though...

JamieG

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#3 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 01:32:17 pm
That definitely beats my pad then. How is it holding up? Mine has loads of holes in the cover, the straps are knackered and the edges of the foam look like a dog has been at them.

Will Hunt

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#4 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 01:38:36 pm
My Alpkit 'Ard Woomf was bought early 2006 and still comes out to play. It was one of 30 prototypes sold for £50 made with tougher cordura fabric (which now seems to be standard).

mr chaz

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#5 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 01:45:04 pm
JamieG, yours sounds almost identical to mine, little 1x1 m grey and black Beal jobby purchased from Go Outdoors by my brother about the same time. Still in regular use owing to the fact it fits beautifully inside an organic simple pad and weighs fuckall.

Duma

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#6 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 02:01:13 pm
That definitely beats my pad then. How is it holding up? Mine has loads of holes in the cover, the straps are knackered and the edges of the foam look like a dog has been at them.

Like I say, use has been pretty light for the last ten years, but still, remarkably well! Foam is ok, cover is still fine, it's just the velcro is only just still sticking.

My pod from about 2005 or 6 has a cover in perfect nick, and that was my main pad for a lot longer than the S7, but the foam is totally knackered now and it's too bulky to be a handy second pad so it's retired to the garage now.

JamieG

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#7 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 02:17:52 pm
JamieG, yours sounds almost identical to mine, little 1x1 m grey and black Beal jobby purchased from Go Outdoors by my brother about the same time. Still in regular use owing to the fact it fits beautifully inside an organic simple pad and weighs fuckall.

Yeah that sounds exactly like mine. Might have been from Go Outdoors in Sheffield (or maybe Decathlon if that had opened by then). I also carried on using mine because it fitted so nicely inside my organic pad. Great minds and all that. (Or skint/tight boulderers)  :2thumbsup:

Mike Tyson

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#8 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 09:07:05 pm
I have an S7 pad that was donated to me by TC of this parish. I also have an original Franklin Drop Zone (before they became Black Diamond) and a tiny Snap pad for sit starts. Amusingly, this small pad was referred to as a “deus” pad for a while, as a mate read it upside down and the name stuck! All are pre 2004 I think.

Mike Tyson

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#9 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 09:07:52 pm
I should add, they are all very much useable, but not in use as such due to my complete and utter lack of climbing activity these days!

SA Chris

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#10 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 10:04:29 pm
I had a megagrip one of about 2000 vintage in irregular use until it was lost at sea a couple of years back (along with my dropzone). I think hongkongstuey got it for me at a cheap price as he was working at the climbing shop in Stoke, he can probably age it more accurately from that than I can.

JamieG

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#11 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 26, 2022, 10:31:22 pm
Some impressively old mats still out and about. Maybe mine has a few more years life in it yet.  :-\

lagerstarfish

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#12 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 09:33:04 am
My late 90s S7 mat being used the day before yesterday


Duma

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#13 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 10:03:53 am
Those target ones were the original commercially available mats weren't they? I remember how massive my S7 looked compared to my mates target went I first got it - it looks tiny now!

SA Chris

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#14 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 10:36:52 am
I think Sid's Megagrip ones might just predate them.

JamieG

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#15 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 10:56:13 am
One definite advancement with modern pads is due to the bigger area and thicker foam, the thump when you throw them down, in a fit of masculine bravado, is much improved. Nothing kicks up the dust in the face of punters like brand new Ocun Dominator or Organic Full Pad!

ianabbot

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#16 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 11:21:33 am
I have a DMM mat from way back, sometime late 90s? Someone I knew from the Beacon wall had a contact at DMM in Llanberis and got it for me. I was told it was one of the first batch of pads they ever made and I can't begin to describe how brilliant I thought it was at the time. It boasts a number of strong features including woeful thinness, and just has a single tape 'over-the-shoulder' strap. The only times I ever carried it using this it whipped around in the wind, instantly winding the piano wire strap into a noose with high probability of garrotting me. It is now referred to as 'the sponge' due to its non-existent waterproofing coupled with super-absorbent foam. In 2015 when I came out of my protracted retirement from climbing I showed up at Ruthven with it, got half way up one of the problems on the high face of the boulder, looked down at the sponge and promptly downclimbed, went home and ordered a new pad.

On the plus side, it weighs about the same as a small sheet of tissue paper and fits perfectly in the flap of my main pad, so still gets an outing for sit starts and hole-filling on long (i.e. 100m plus) walk-ins if I can't summon the energy to take a heavier second pad. It can't be stored in the house due to the overpowering mould aroma so has been behind the board in the garage. Recently its appeal has been further enhanced as the cat spewed a half-digested rodent over it, lending an interesting and completely indelible 'camouflage' pattern. I'm optimistic for another two decades of use.

JamieG

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#17 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 11:41:51 am
This is supposed to be about the oldest mat still in use, not the grimmest.  ;D

cheque

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#18 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 12:44:29 pm
A bit :offtopic: but I found this the other day in On The Edge issue 65, March 1997. Must be one of the first bouldering mat reviews ever.

It starts on the previous page:

Bouldering Mats
There are three of these blighters currently available and another one is in the prototype stage. They take different approaches to the bouldering mat concept, and they’re a bit like pizzas it…



The pizza reference seems a bit tenuous until you realise how small the fuckers actually we’re back then.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2022, 01:08:39 pm by cheque »

Hoseyb

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#19 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 01:22:44 pm
My first mat was a Holdz one I bought second hand from Ray Kay of all people. I think that was pre marriage so pre 2005. I still use it as a fourth mat, but it's repaired with bailing twine and carrymat

battery

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#20 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 05:53:23 pm
I had a megagrip one of about 2000 vintage in irregular use until it was lost at sea a couple of years back (along with my dropzone). I think hongkongstuey got it for me at a cheap price as he was working at the climbing shop in Stoke, he can probably age it more accurately from that than I can.

Genuinely curious as to how you loose a pad at sea... Please tell

SA Chris

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#21 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 10:40:16 pm
It was stashed safely at the back of a big cave where the sea would never reach.

Didn't factor in North Sea storms.

BrutusTheBear

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#22 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 27, 2022, 11:32:28 pm
It was stashed safely at the back of a big cave where the sea would never reach.

Didn't factor in North Sea storms.
I had an original late 90s S7 pad that was still in use until fairly recently.  A friend was carrying it with the shoulder strap hooked over a modern pad with rucksack straps.  A very wild and windy day out on the coast.  Wind was particularly strong rounding a corner on a platform above the sea.  Unfortunately the vintage pad took flight into a very rough Bristol Channel, never to be seen again.  :wavecry:  Otherwise it would have been a very strong contender for oldest mat still in use.

clm

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#23 Re: Oldest mat still in use?
September 30, 2022, 06:17:42 pm
2003 triple pad from Font decathlon. Only pad I’ve ever had.

 

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