I am a beginner to climbing and bought this ClimbX harness from Go Outdoors in the UK.
Someone at the gym today told me it is defective because the belay loop passes through the thin piece of webbing on the waist belt.
Is this harness defective?
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It certainly looks unusual, and the only Climb X harness on the Go Outdoors website (although it looks like a different model) shows the belay loop going round the tie-in loop, just like every harness I’ve seen and every harness in a quick poll of search results.
I’d be very surprised that the QA process would have failed so spectacularly given that someone’s life could be at risk if it goes wrong, and you do get some designs of equipment that look different to normal yet aren’t inherently unsafe.
All that said, this image that looks like the same model harness does show the tie-in loop going through the belay loop so it could well be a non-conformity.
I’ve just been able to recreate this situation and correct it. You need to disconnect the leg loops from the waist belt and completely undo the waist buckles. You can flip the belay loop around to the front of the tie in loop again, and carefully re-connect it all.
Oh, cool! I read an article about this once but didn't think it was a realistic scenario. I guess it is.
Yes, it's wrong and dangerous as shown, but it's just "assembled" wrong, and you can fix it:
It's confusing to describe, but I can see it.