Head to Head: Swivel Pulleys by Rock Exotica and CMC

Welcome to the Head-to-Head series where we take two products and see how they hold up against each other.  


This blog features two great pulleys, both with a built-in swivel head.  One is by Rock Exotica, the other by CMC.  For this blog, we'll be looking at the 2" single pulley and 1.5" double pulley varieties.  Let's get to it.



Now for those of you who geek out about rescue stuff, you're probably already onto me.  For those that don't know, the CMC Swivel Pulley is the Rock Exotica Omni-Block Swivel Pulley.  And I mean exactly that.  Both pulleys are the exact same pulley, both manufactured by Rock Exotica.  So what's the difference?

Some will say "not much," others will claim "everything that matters," and it comes down to one very key feature. Certification.

You see, Rock Exotica manufactures and ensures their pulleys meet and receive the certification for CE and UIAA standards, but that's as far as they go.  It's not entirely clear which CE standard Rock is referring to either, a common problem with CE certification, whereby the CE logo is stamped onto the product, but not the ID number to tell you which standard is being met.  (The CE standard issue isn't a big concern, I only mention it out of interest sake.)

What's really interesting is what CMC does to take their testing to the next level.  They get the pulleys from Rock, and send them right over to Underwriters' Laboratories to test and subsequently receive their NFPA 1983 compliance certification.  Now this might not matter to you if you don't work for a fire department but if you do, you care passionately for and love your NFPA 1983.           

The end result is a difference in certification (and price).  You'll pay more for the CMC version of the exact same pulley.  The only difference is you also get proof that the pulley meets the NFPA 1983 standard.  "Shouldn't the NFPA 1983 standard apply to the Rock Exotica versions too, since it's the exact same pulley?"  Well, rationally yes.  But legally, no because CMC paid that bill, and not Rock Exotica.  


Stay safe (and certified),

- The Dynamic Rescue Team

Joel Mohr
Joel Mohr


Joel Mohr first became involved with technical rescue work as a member of the Port Moody Volunteer Fire Department in 2009 where he continues to be an active member. With a passion for technical rescue, Joel began working with Dynamic Rescue Systems and soon became a key player in their organization, providing emergency standby rescue, instruction, and equipment for industry, mining, and rescue organizations across Western Canada. In 2014 Joel began pursuing his M.D. and is currently in residency with the University of British Columbia School of Medicine.