The Grivel Candela is a multi-functional tool designed for ice climbing with several useful features.
- Activities: ice climbing
- Materials/construction/technologies: plastic, steel
- Price: around £20 / €25
How Grivel describes the Candela
It serves as a tool for removing ice from ice screws. The Candela can also be used for building anchors and Abalakoffs, with its extraction hook for pulling lanyards and retractable blade for cutting lanyards or webbings.
The tool features a plastic hook for easy attachment to a harness, and it can be stored inside the ice screws without causing any damage due to its soft plastic material.
Key Considerations on the Grivel Candela
Overview of the Candela
Candela is a 27g V-threading multi-tool with a vibrant yellow colour, typical of Grivel’s products. It was designed with portability and convenience in mind. The goal was to create a tool that could be stored neatly on a harness. This makes it a great option for those looking for a compact and efficient tool.
The Candela boasts a 14mm diameter that allows for a perfect fit inside a standard 21-22 cm screw. This makes it easy to store. It is then secured in place with plastic clasps moulded onto the neck of the tool.
The Grivel Candela is a crucial piece of gear for exiting ice climbs. Thanks to its fold-out hook that can pull the cord through a V-Thread (Abalakov) anchor. It also features a retractable blade for cutting sling material once the anchor is complete. Additionally, the tool is made of soft plastic, which allows for the safe cleaning of ice from screws without causing any scratches.
By slipping the Candela into a screw, you can have a compact and comprehensive V-threading setup. The plastic clasps that hold the tool in place may loosen over time, but a simple strip of duct tape can provide the necessary reinforcement to keep it secure.
In addition to its V-threading capabilities, the Candela’s screw diameter design also allows it to serve as a ramrod for clearing soft ice from screws. However, care should be taken to avoid snapping off the hooked end. Another advantage of its design is its effectiveness in cleaning slush out of holes drilled into wet ice. The bright yellow colour is also a helpful alignment indicator. It makes it easier to line up the second screw when placed in the first hole.
A soft Plastic Clip
The Candela is equipped with a moulded plastic clip. This is for temporary attachment to your harness (if you do not have a 21-22 cm screw readily available). However, it is not recommended to use this clip as a permanent storage solution, as it may become detached from your gear loop.
A spring-loaded wire gate would be a more secure and efficient alternative. Nevertheless, the plastic clip serves as a practical temporary attachment while setting up a V-thread with screws, a cord, and other equipment.
Despite its flexibility, the plastic used in the clip is not prone to becoming rigid or breaking, even in cold temperatures.
It would have been desirable if the clip was larger or designed as a larger eye to be used with a proper carabiner.
The hook design of the Candela ice screw tool is highly praised for its ingenuity. The hook can be folded down and stored within the tool body and then rotated out and into place like a jackknife. This design effectively protects the hook from snagging on clothing and other gear and eliminates the risk of spontaneous V-threading. However, straight out of the box, the Candela’s hooking performance may not be as effective as expected.
The ability to fold and store the hook is crucial in preventing snagging on clothing and gear.
Another feature of the Candela is a short serrated blade located near the tip of the tool. It’s made of stamped metal and riveted to the plastic, but it is not suitable for primary cutting tasks. The blade should only be considered as a backup option.
The retractable blade on the tool could have been omitted to reduce the risk of accidental cuts and save cost.
Grivel Candela Review
The Candela ice screw tool is considered one of the best and most well-designed on the market. Its small profile allows for easy clearance of screws. It also enables users to see into v-thread holes while pulling something through.
The tool serves as a multi-tool, including a knife, ramrod, and alignment indicator, and can be stored neatly inside 21-22 cm screws. The threading hook can be folded into the unit for safe and easy carrying, and a plastic hook at the head allows for temporary clipping while completing other threading tasks.
Pros: Neat storage inside 21-22 cm screws. Multi-tool function with knife, ramrod, and alignment indicator. Safe and easy to carry with the threading hook folded into the unit. Temporary clipping capability with the plastic hook at the head.
Cons: The stamped metal blade should only be used as a backup knife. Clips holding the unit in the ice screw may weaken with age, but a wrap of duct tape can solve this issue. The threading hook needs to be unbent and sharpened before use. There is a natural weak point where the hook folds into the unit, requiring care when folding it out, especially with gloves on.