PETZL MAESTRO Large Descent Control/Belay Device
The Petzl MAESTRO L is a Petzl descender with a progress-capture pulley that is designed to function in technical rescue and maintenance operations. The Maestro L descender is capable of hauling loads up 280 kilograms and is compatible with 11.5-millimeter to 13-millimeter diameter ropes.
The Maestro L can be used as either a primary system or a back-up. It features a pulley with a large diameter sheave mounted on sealed ball bearings to guarantee excellent efficiency with even heavy loads. The handle has an ergonomic design with integrated additional braking for a smooth and controlled descent. If you need to change directions and switch from lowering to hauling a load, the MAESTRO can perform that switch without needing to transfer the load. When the user releases the handle, the auto-lock system keeps the rope locked in place - once the rope is locked, it can be taken up without handle manipulation.
|Rope compatibility||12.5 to 13 mm||10.5 to 11.5 mm|
|Guarantee||3 years||3 years|
- CE (1)
- EN 341 Type 2 Class A
- NFPA 1983 General Use
MBS Pulley: 36kN (G)
MBS Becket: 22kN (G)
Ask the Expert: CEO Chris Koester
2020 Petzl Maestro Review
We are super excited as we were the first in the U.S. to try the new Petzl Maestro. Dave Rone with Petzl stopped by our six- story Rescue Training Center in Pryor, Oklahoma to let the team at Rescue Gear Pro work with the new Maestro.
The Maestro was due for release in 2018; it was even included in the 2018 Petzl catalog. But Petzl delayed the release due to the fact there was one test the Maestro did not pass - a European-standards test in which a 600lb load has to descend at so many meters per second (an unrealistic rate for 600lb load in my professional opinion) then come to a hard stop at the bottom of the descent. While it barely failed, Petzl decided they needed to redesign the Maestro to pass 100%.
The redesign changed the pulley so it is kind of octagonal with flat sides that create a circle. The flat sides give it just enough friction to prevent it from slipping too much on the European 600lb 600 ft lowering test. An additional design change was to put some vents in the cover plate to help with heat dissipation. With all the back history of why the delay in the release out of the way, the team at Rescue Gear Pro is proud to share with you our review of The Maestro! Voila!
The Maestro is a lowering and belay device similar to the CMC MPD; however, in our tests with the Maestro, the Maestro is much less confusing to load and easier to use. The Maestro will be available in January of 2020. Petzl has pre-ordered two Maestros for the Rescue Gear Pro Team to use as demonstration models. We are one of the only companies to get these early models from Petzl. The Maestro will be available in the small and large version just like the ID’s. One for smaller diameter rope (gold color) for the Rope Access folks and one for larger diameter rope (red color) for those who are bound by NFPA 1983 standards.
To load the Maestro, it is extremely simple; just take a bight of rope, put it over the pulley and close the cover plate. The only thing you have to be aware of is which side is the load side and which side is the haul side. To make it easy for you to load the rope, Petzl has placed nice pictures on each side of the pulley
The Maestro also has a friction/redirect built-in for heavier loads, such as a two-person load, which is a great feature. Once loaded to lower someone, you simply pull the handle similar to the very popular ID’s that revolutionized the rope access/rescue world. If something were to happen during the lowering, you have two options: (1) let go of the handle which stops the descent, or (2) pull on the feed line with your hand to stop the descent. To switch from a lowering to a raising system, the Maestro has progress capture and captures the load which makes switching over extremely easy and simple. The Maestro also has a beckett built-in to allow for additional mechanical advantage or for a redirect on your haul system.
The rope access and rope rescue world is finally recognizing that belaying with slack in your belay rope is not the best practice. The trend for best practices is heading to what we call Dual Tensioned or Mirrored systems in which both lines attached to the load are lowered at the same time with tension on both lines so that if one line fails there is little or no drop to the load/person(s) at all.
To use the Maestro as a backup device, it has to be used as a Dual Tension or Mirrored system. Simply pull the handle in unison with the person on the other Maestro. To use it as belay when raising it is simply awesome! All you do is pull the slack through the device as the team on the other Maestro pulls on the haul line. You can literally pull the slack through with two fingers - it’s that easy thus keeping tension on the line at all times with progress capture so if there is a mainline failure, they do not shock load on the system very far.
The Petzl Maestro MSRP is $549.95 compared to the CMC MPD which is $789.00. If you would like product updates to all products and the latest news in what’s trending in the rope rescue world, join our email list (enter your email at the bottom of this page).
In summary, the Maestro is a great device you’ll want to have due to the fact that it has a pulley instead of the cam like the Petzl ID. The Maestro boasts a 95% efficiency and weighs in at just a little over 2lbs.
We are grateful that Petzl trusted our experience and knowledge and gave us the opportunity to be one of, if not the first, in the U.S. to test the pre-released Maestro in a real-world environment, actually lowering and raising people.
Our mission at Rescue Gear Pro is to test and write product reviews on the results so we keep our customers updated on leading-edge equipment but more importantly, keep them safe.