- Climb Design
LittleHammer is a tool for rock climbers to remove a protection device called a ‘nut’. Littlehammer features a spring loaded impact weight delivering a percussive force to release a nut that becomes stuck once it has been loaded by fall or being weighted.
A nut is an aluminum wedge with cable placed in a rock crevice. The rope is clipped to it with carabiners and slings; the whole system with belayer can protect a climber from a fall.
LittleHammer is an advance on the traditional nut tool that is a passive implement for manually levering or striking a nut out.
As a climber and industrial designer I was dissatisfied with the current method of removing nuts. It’s awkward, injurious to the hand, and often ineffective; all climbers experience this. The impact being the key, I arrived at this design incorporating a spring-loaded impact weight.
There have been many attempts at addressing this problem as seen in the current market offerings, but none have made the leap to a dynamic device that can be operated one-handed.
A positive response to LittleHammer from climbing media is the basis for imminent global crowdfunding campaign for the first production run: manufacturing in Central Victoria.
Climb Design is not so much about transformation with design, it is wholly design: being a small independent business created to present new design to the global climbing community. The first strategic design release via crowdfunging of Rack Sack (Climb Designs second product) was to establish the brand, expand our reach and learn about crowdfunding. LittleHammer is our third product with four more new designs in prototype. So no need to integrate design in our activities, we integrate production, distribution, and promotion into our design activities!
Climb Design’s impact is entirely based on design. Design is communication and communicating our new designs has been successful: the designs are illustrated on online platforms in video, images, and text. So the total of engagement is with our design is shown in web traffic, subscriptions, ‘follows’ on Instagram, Facebook and includes positive comments on forums and from local and international climbing media.
LittleHammer is addressing a problem from first principles, resolving it within the morphology of the existing tool (retaining it’s functions) yet going way beyond in performance with the metrics of: time / number of strikes to release a nut, accuracy with the non dominant hand and applying an impact single handed.
In applying for a provisional patent, initial searches have found nothing similar. Most nut tool innovation is in lightweight or handle design to reduce palm injury. In my experience of the vast range of climbing equipment over decades there is nothing like LittleHammer.