Ever wonder how strong that pro or gear really is? Here’s a list to get you started, and maybe help you win an argument or two. I’ve wanted to see a list like this for a long time, and after scouring the web and not finding any, decided to make my own.
Metric notes: A kilonewton (kN) is a metric unit of force, equal to 100 kilograms, or about 225 lbs. Ratings are rounded to the nearest kN.
Sources: http://www.fishproducts.com, tech pages, “The Mountaineering Handbook”, by Craig Connally, published 2005, checking the gear ratings on some of my own stuff and in the local gear shop.
I made two lists. One is gear ranked in descending order, and the other is gear ranked by category (like seeing small, medium and large stoppers all ranked side by side.)
Takeaways (for me)
There's a BIG increase in strength from 6mm cord to 7 mm cord. Use 7 mm for cordelettes.
A well placed bolt is never going to fail you.
You can almost rappel on your shoelaces; 2kN is about the most force you can apply to the anchor.
Climbing ropes are not tested for tensile breaking strength like most other gear. But, if you stretch a rope until it breaks, that will probably happen around 18 Kn.