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Metolius BRD
(#757, 1747)

Front Rear Top
Front Rear Top
Left Right Bottom
Left Right Bottom

Technical Details

Metolius Mountain Products donated my first BRD in 2001. I acquired another BRD from in 2012

The Metolius BRD is milled from aluminum alloy and then hard anodized. This BRD is 79 mm. long, 102 mm. wide, 44 mm. thick, and weighs 83 g. It has two 33 mm. long, 15 mm. wide slots, a release tab, and a plastic covered cable keeper. There are five thin cooling slots cut at each end.

One side is printed with a rigging illustration. The top is printed with the Metolius logo, "11.00" (probably indicating manufacture in November 2000), and the BRD logo. My first BRD is a cosmetic second, and has "2ND" stamped under the finger tab.


RiggingThe Metolius BRD (Belay Rappel Device) is a hybrid between a slotted-block belay device and a belay tube. The BRD is asymmetric, and the instructions warn that the device is NOT reversible: in other words, the rope going to the climber must always come out of the tab side of the device. The bottom of the device is shaped so that the carabiner is forced to the opposite side of the slot, increasing the friction. Control is good, but not as smooth as some of the belay tubes, primarily because of the increased friction. Personally, I think the increased friction is worth sacrificing a tiny bit of smoothness.

Cosmetic defectCuriously, Metolius says that the device is reversible for rappel. The reversed configuration gives less friction, so I don't use it this way.

The cooling slots look to me to be more cosmetic than functional. Something in my engineering background tells me that the slots are far too thin to allow much air flow through them. The cooling slots do not reach to the rope channel. The cable keeper is nice, and helps prevent dropping the device while at a hanging belay. It is quite stiff, and acts more like a rod keeper.

I cannot find the flaw that made the first one a cosmetic second, so someone at Metolius must have inspected this one very carefully before rejecting it. My guess is that it is the gap at one end of the plastic cover on the cable keeper. Just in case you ask, Metolius did ask me if I wanted a cosmetic second before sending it - and I answered yes.

By the way, the cable on the cosmetic second was much shorter than on the later one, making the total length only 84 mm.

Instructions Instructions