I had the pleasure of climbing with Rich a few weeks ago, and he had prototypes with him that he used. They're pretty cool. The springs are encased in plastic. I think I actually recall Rich saying he suggested a minor modification, which BD actually made.
Incidentally, he said the grey Aliens have been hard for him to come by lately, apparently because one of the big outfitters (EMS, maybe?) is carrying them.
we're all living proof that nothing lasts