Forums: Climbing Information: Gear Heads: Re: [shimanilami] Best belay device: Edit Log


Dec 18, 2012, 10:39 AM

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Re: [shimanilami] Best belay device
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shimanilami wrote:
So after the first 5m, the leader has a bunch of rope dangling from his harness for the rest of the climb?! And you do this in the name of safety!?

Why not just tell the leader to clip at his waist and avoid the hassle?

No. I have the 8mm rope clove-hitched to a locker on my harnessí loop. Before starting to climb up to and lead above the 2nd progression pro, I just unclip the locker and let the belayer recover the short rope.

Clipping a single rope at the waist, youíre still leading above your last pro and, therefore, in a potential high impact/high FF fall situation for the first couple of them, even if you place those early pros fairly close together.

In answer to Cracklover, I guess I deserve the flak for briefly outlining the general principle of this particular "no-FF2" method and moving straight to some particulars of its belaying implications without providing more context or details. Your reply also helps point out to those not familiar with half rope belaying that this is by no means a standard method.

This approach of holding one rope while paying out slack on the other is applied only for the first couple of progression pros where there is extremely minimal possibility of a high FF because youíre not supposed to climb above the previous pro. As soon as the second progression pro is clipped at armís length from the first, things change. If we're climbing on a single rope, I've already mentioned above what happens. If we're on half ropes, I resume (or expect my belayer to resume) belaying in a fashion similar to what you describe with the braking ends of both ropes being held by the belayerís braking hand at all times, with the fancy finger wraps so both ropes can be held or slid semi-independently to allow the "(nearly) simultaneously taking up and paying out of slack".

I admit that, even with the low FFs involved in what would basically be an extremely short top-rope fall just one or two metres out of the belay, itís not impossible that the last pro on which the leader is being held would rip out. If that occurs while the leader is placing the next pro, I should mention that at this point, he is being belayed on both ropes. Only when he pulls slack for the next clip does the belayer switch to holding only the holding rope. This early in the lead, the slack taken for the next clip will be greater than the distance to the next lower clip on the rope being held so the fall will still get caught better and sooner by holding that rope alone.

The thread that explored the various "no-FF2" options is at;#2386970. Each option is fairly easy to describe with a single sentence (see my long "recap" post on p.3) but when you start exploring their practical implications in detail, things get complicated pretty quickly. A few of the practical implications are discussed in the latter part of the thread and others are discussed here but Iíve come across and worked through quite a few more over the past couple of years. I have not reported back with a complete synopsis because it would require a very long post that most people would find way too complicated. The additional details provided in this post are only what I thought would be the minimum needed to answer crackloverís criticism but should NOT be construed as representing the sum total of what to do to implement this option safely!!

Most of the practical considerations concern the leader. Iím OK with them and with managing the decision-making tree for selecting which option to apply, depending on the belay configuration and several other criteria. In terms of getting others to adopt these approaches, Iím happy if I can just get a belayer to whom I have not already shown this approach to accept it and correctly apply it to my lead.

(edited for clarity)

(This post was edited by jktinst on Dec 18, 2012, 10:48 AM)

Edit Log:
Post edited by jktinst () on Dec 18, 2012, 10:48 AM

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