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Air Tech
Gear Review

Air Tech

Air Tech

Page Type: Gear Review

Object Title: Air Tech

Manufacturer: Grivel

Your Opinion: 
 - 7 Votes


Page By: hmronnowRob Ricks

Created/Edited: Aug 17, 2003 / May 12, 2008

Object ID: 428

Hits: 3753 



Air Tech is a superlight ice axe with a chromolly steel head that corresponds to UIAA norms for strength and durability; trustworthy for both casual and professional use. Air Tech's lightweight can best be appreciated at high altitude where every gram feels like a kilo. Its forged chromolly steel head is hand polished, the teeth extend the entire length of the pick. A natural rubber grip covers the Ergal 7075 shaft.


Hot forged Chromolly steel head
Ergal 7075 alloy shaft - "T" rated
Rubber grip
"Classic" positive pick angle for technical work
Weight: 475 gr. or 16,8 oz
Available lengths: 48cm, 53cm, 58cm, 66cm, 74cm
Suggested range of usage: 1. classical and technical alpinism 2. ice falls and goulottes (gullies and couloirs)



Viewing: 1-5 of 5

hmronnowUntitled Review

Voted 5/5

Have owned one for 3 years and love it.

Unlike the ultra light all aluminium backcountry-ski axes, the Air Tech (still quite light) has a proper steel shaft pick, which will take years of walking support also on rock and the most beautiful chrom-molubdenium-steel head on the market.

If occationally you have to swing the pick into hard snow/ice, you need the weight of a steel head, which furthermore will survive that accidential blow to the underlying rock. I find that the Air Tech even bite into water-ice, allowing me to do easiy ice climbing with that and one technical axe (Rambo II). Carrying those and one trekking pole, I have two-handed support all the way from valley to summit.

Since you rarely equip mountaineering piolets with leaches, pulling yourself up steeper ice will often send the glove sliding down the smooth shaft. Here, the rubber handle of the Air Tech gives me a good grip even with thick mitts. After three years the rubber is still holding up nicely, so don't worry about its durability. The rubber does, however, mean that it is slightly more difficult to plant the axe head deep in the glacier for belays etc.

For this reason, I would check out the new Air Tech Evolution (look at www.grivel.it). It features the same great head and foot on a slightly bent shaft without rubber, but a hand-stop which slides up to the head when not in use. Though I don't know whether the bent shaft will be good for walking on shallow glaciers.
Posted Aug 17, 2003 11:51 am

chris.muellerAir Tech

Voted 5/5

Use mine for some years now. Love it, too.
Posted Jun 4, 2007 4:32 am

BergshrundVery Durable

Voted 5/5

Extremely durable after years of use
Posted Dec 21, 2007 2:35 am

Bill KerrBest liteweight Axe

Voted 5/5

Best lightweight compromise out there. Have used mine for 5 years in all sorts of alpine situations. Will bite even on hard steep glacier ice. The new evolution bent shaft version might be easier on the knuckles on ice.
Posted Aug 15, 2008 5:01 pm

rggGreat Axe

Voted 5/5

After my previous ultra light axe (I forgot which model, the brand was Camp) literally broke - yes, I know, my bad, it was only meant for glacier walks and the occational self arrest, not for anything more serious - I got one of these and it's really great! If I would loose it somehow, I would buy another one right away.
Posted Nov 11, 2010 2:02 pm

Viewing: 1-5 of 5