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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So I have $225 in Christmas money earmarked for a set of double step mini-sticks for 2022. I first looked at the XOP mini doubles, but learned they had some design problems and are redesigning for the new year. I've also heard from a couple guys that XOP quality has declined....which brings back vivid memories of Muddy past and present. That is the reason Muddy is not on my radar at all....

Next I considered Novix and have almost pulled the trigger a couple times. They are very similar to my original LW full length sticks and have the advantage of already owning a set of EWO daisy straps to replace the buckle straps for less weight and more silence. They are pretty short and the double steps are solid....they don't fold down for packing. How do they nest for a slim profile?

Then the Thethrd Skeletors showed up last fall with a lot going for them....but also reports that some have experienced bent standoffs due to the manner they go on a tree. The Thethrd site produced a short video of how to correctly install them to avoid this issue.....which means they recognize the potential for an issue. I've read some really harsh reviews of Thethrd's CS and putting out products with flaws, so I am being a bit careful.

Without doubling my cash outlay, what advice to you folks that own or test such things have to offer? EXPERIENCED input appreciated in advance.....
 

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I’ve ran the novix mini doubles all season. For the price, you honestly can’t beat them. 1 stick has a strap w/buckle so you can strap the 4 together for transport. They are a bulky transport since each stick stacks inside each v-bracket. I would also stealth strip them since they are noisy, as are all sticks.

I’m 6’1 and 4 sticks get me 18-22ft based on how I stretch. I also add 2 amsteel aiders for the first 2 sticks for higher climbs. They bite ok to the tree, obviously tree types will change the way they bite. I’m more than happy with the sticks and I would say that they are a great purchase.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I’ve ran the novix mini doubles all season. For the price, you honestly can’t beat them. 1 stick has a strap w/buckle so you can strap the 4 together for transport. They are a bulky transport since each stick stacks inside each v-bracket. I would also stealth strip them since they are noisy, as are all sticks.

I’m 6’1 and 4 sticks get me 18-22ft based on how I stretch. I also add 2 amsteel aiders for the first 2 sticks for higher climbs. They bite ok to the tree, obviously tree types will change the way they bite. I’m more than happy with the sticks and I would say that they are a great purchase.
Thanks for a good assessment.....appreciate it
 

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I like the looks of the new Skeletor sticks. Like an upgraded Hawk Helium (which I currently run)
 
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So I have $225 in Christmas money earmarked for a set of double step mini-sticks for 2022. I first looked at the XOP mini doubles, but learned they had some design problems and are redesigning for the new year. I've also heard from a couple guys that XOP quality has declined....which brings back vivid memories of Muddy past and present. That is the reason Muddy is not on my radar at all....

Next I considered Novix and have almost pulled the trigger a couple times. They are very similar to my original LW full length sticks and have the advantage of already owning a set of EWO daisy straps to replace the buckle straps for less weight and more silence. They are pretty short and the double steps are solid....they don't fold down for packing. How do they nest for a slim profile?

Then the Thethrd Skeletors showed up last fall with a lot going for them....but also reports that some have experienced bent standoffs due to the manner they go on a tree. The Thethrd site produced a short video of how to correctly install them to avoid this issue.....which means they recognize the potential for an issue. I've read some really harsh reviews of Thethrd's CS and putting out products with flaws, so I am being a bit careful.

Without doubling my cash outlay, what advice to you folks that own or test such things have to offer? EXPERIENCED input appreciated in advance.....
Did you look into hunting beast sticks?
 

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I don’t have any experience with any of the sticks you mentioned but if I were in your situation I would go with novix due to your experience with lw and the other reviews you have read. Sorry I can’t help more
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Did you look into hunting beast sticks?
I did....their 20" step with non-folding double steps with no holes are $80 each, so a set of four would be nearly $100 more than the Novix for the same basic design. If anyone can explain why they are worth that much more.....please chime in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I like the looks of the new Skeletor sticks. Like an upgraded Hawk Helium (which I currently run)
If the bending standoff issue had not surfaced, I would already own a set of Skeletors. Their attachment system with Amsteel rope is getting very high marks.....plus the listed weight is very accurate.
 

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I did....their 20" step with non-folding double steps with no holes are $80 each, so a set of four would be nearly $100 more than the Novix for the same basic design. If anyone can explain why they are worth that much more.....please chime in.
There are holes drilled out....duh...doesn't that justify $100 difference?
 

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So I have $225 in Christmas money earmarked for a set of double step mini-sticks for 2022. I first looked at the XOP mini doubles, but learned they had some design problems and are redesigning for the new year. I've also heard from a couple guys that XOP quality has declined....which brings back vivid memories of Muddy past and present. That is the reason Muddy is not on my radar at all....

Next I considered Novix and have almost pulled the trigger a couple times. They are very similar to my original LW full length sticks and have the advantage of already owning a set of EWO daisy straps to replace the buckle straps for less weight and more silence. They are pretty short and the double steps are solid....they don't fold down for packing. How do they nest for a slim profile?

Then the Thethrd Skeletors showed up last fall with a lot going for them....but also reports that some have experienced bent standoffs due to the manner they go on a tree. The Thethrd site produced a short video of how to correctly install them to avoid this issue.....which means they recognize the potential for an issue. I've read some really harsh reviews of Thethrd's CS and putting out products with flaws, so I am being a bit careful.

Without doubling my cash outlay, what advice to you folks that own or test such things have to offer? EXPERIENCED input appreciated in advance.....
for mini doubles....i'd go beast stick or novix and then use a 2 or 3 step aider on the bottom stick and then a 1 step aider on the other sticks....preferably a carry as you go webbing loop for less stuff hanging off your sticks
 

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If I wasn't going to spend the money on LWCG compacts then I would probably look at the Novix minis.
 

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I use 4 novix minis with a 20” EWO cable aider on each. I’m 6’4 and have gotten up to 25ft when spaced out and a straight tree. Looking hard at upgrading to beast sticks before next season
 

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If the bending standoff issue had not surfaced, I would already own a set of Skeletors. Their attachment system with Amsteel rope is getting very high marks.....plus the listed weight is very accurate.
Totally understand. I only weight 165 so I wouldn't be concerned with it. I've only seen one case of that happening so far.
 

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I would put the $ in an envelope and save a little more and get 3 or 4 LWCG double steps with aiders.

Tethrd has terrible customer service and quality control has gone way down hill.
Novix lost lone wolf treestands because of quality control and not paying trademark use fees and never innovate. They are literally the same as the mini sticks lone wolf used to make 10 years ago.

The LWCG doubles are stupid light, go up easy, are stable, and pack together really well. So well that I don't even pack them anymore I just nest them together and carry them in 1 hand and my bow in the other. Can't get much quicker than that when you get to the tree.
 

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I could never understand why guys like minis better than longer sticks. Can someone fill me in? I can get plenty high with 3 LW 32" sticks at less than 7.5 lbs. with no aiders and other stuff. And I often use 4 which I sometimes feel is too high, but I can keep them comfortably closer together and be safer. What do the small sticks do better? You'd need more of them right? Sorry to hijack.
 
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I could never understand why guys like minis better than longer sticks. Can someone fill me in? I can get plenty high with 3 LW 32" sticks at less than 7.5 lbs. with no aiders and other stuff. And I often use 4 which I sometimes feel is too high, but I can keep them comfortably closer together and be safer. What do the small sticks do better? You'd need more of them right? Sorry to hijack.
The way LWCG stands pack the sticks on, the compacts stack much better due to the way the full lengths stick well above the top of the stand so would snag worse through brush. And the cable aiders weigh 3 ounces each and I use two 17" sticks each with aiders and get high enough........so, very lightweight and very compact when transporting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I could never understand why guys like minis better than longer sticks. Can someone fill me in? I can get plenty high with 3 LW 32" sticks at less than 7.5 lbs. with no aiders and other stuff. And I often use 4 which I sometimes feel is too high, but I can keep them comfortably closer together and be safer. What do the small sticks do better? You'd need more of them right? Sorry to hijack.
This is my current mobile setup....Millennium M7 modded with standard LW sticks. Note how far past the 21" platform the sticks extend in regards to getting around in the woods. Mini sticks are close to the width of the M7 stand width and also lighter so they go up easily. I'm starting to consider getting three of the LWCG double step compacts with an aider and that might get me up high enough in most circumstances.
Wood Religious item Cross Metal Machine
 

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I could never understand why guys like minis better than longer sticks. Can someone fill me in? I can get plenty high with 3 LW 32" sticks at less than 7.5 lbs. with no aiders and other stuff. And I often use 4 which I sometimes feel is too high, but I can keep them comfortably closer together and be safer. What do the small sticks do better? You'd need more of them right? Sorry to hijack.
lighter, don't get hung up on brush (this is huge when walking off trail in thick stuff)

and aiders aren't dangerous at all if you use a tether and lineman's lanyard and aren't free climbing

with 4 minis with an aider, you can get higher than 4 regular sticks without an aider....and you do it lighter with small sticks tucked close to your pack/body

when i ran full length hawk heliums, i would have to keep a hand pruner nearby and cut myself out of briars because no matter how low you duck...you're gonna catch those suckers on briars which then brings the briars down onto your clothes or neck
 

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I could never understand why guys like minis better than longer sticks. Can someone fill me in? I can get plenty high with 3 LW 32" sticks at less than 7.5 lbs. with no aiders and other stuff. And I often use 4 which I sometimes feel is too high, but I can keep them comfortably closer together and be safer. What do the small sticks do better? You'd need more of them right? Sorry to hijack.
The latest FAD...

The only advantage I have found with minis in when you are faced with trees with bends, twists and or branches in your path. The can certainly serve a significant purpose in these scenarios, but what I have personally experienced and simply can't believe that I'd be the only one....if I am going in to a new spot or swapping from spot to spot on an excursion, I likely don't know in advance if a mini will serve me better than a standard. So I am likely only carrying my standards as the minis alone, even with a first-step aider is usually not enough to get me to where I like to be in the canopy.

They don't always pack better, in fact some pack worse. They're not always lighter, because most carry an extra step (4).

I have run through just about every set on the market and I am very glad that they are all the rage right now, becuase I have had zero issues selling them for exactly what I bought them for, even a couple more than what I paid for them.when I find they don't meet my needs. All things considered, I dumped ALL but ONE mini (shikar mini). Why did hang on to that one....its 1lb, folds into single plane, 16" end-to-end when folded, bites the tree better than any other I've tried and yes I've tried them all and I picked it up for $75. It is small and light weight enough that I often always take it with me along with my 3-4 standard Heliums. If I encounter one of those funky conditions I mentioned earlier (bend, twist, branch, etc..) the Shikar usually gets me past it. If I don't need it in the climb, I have a 1lb gear holder with me in the stand. It's not rocket science.

I am certain someone will read this and see HELIUMS and instantly file it away as he must not know what he's talking about and that's fine. I can tell you this, I think I've tried every single one that I could get my hands on, even waiting months for the garbage Dan put out to his Beast Nation worshipers. What it came down to for me (as it often does) bang for MY buck. We all have different styles, likes, dislikes, and budgets. Trust me, I don't mind spending if it meets my needs, but if my needs can be met and my wallet no go empty, that will be factor. So many these days will spend just to say they did or that they have the latest...I mean I sold my DAMAGED Beast sticks to a member here for more than I paid for them because he just had to have them...I was transparent, told him the two standoffs were damaged on the first test climb (I am 5'10", 165lbs) in the yard and I was getting nowhere with Dan's CS....I wasn't going to part with them when I was hoping to get a full refund...he paid full price plus extra if I shipped overnight? Guess it met HIS needs???

OP - I hope this helps a little...also, if you orient those sticks vertically on either side of your seat post with the bottom standoff, just past the front of your seat so that it doesn't damage the webbing, you could carry 4 of those steps and have a more streamlined pack. Two standard bungees keep it tight OR simply use whatever system that you use to attach them to the tree to attach them to the stand.

OP - I do realized you asked about a 2-step, but I didn't find any more value in any of them than I did with the shikar....

good luck!
 

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This is my current mobile setup....Millennium M7 modded with standard LW sticks. Note how far past the 21" platform the sticks extend in regards to getting around in the woods. Mini sticks are close to the width of the M7 stand width and also lighter so they go up easily. I'm starting to consider getting three of the LWCG double step compacts with an aider and that might get me up high enough in most circumstances.
View attachment 7544121
How high you hoping to get? I use 3 lWCG doubles with aiders and am getting 15 or so to the platform out of them. And that is with comfy spacing and me being 5'10.
 
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