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Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday
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IsayAutumn


Mar 25, 2010, 1:47 PM
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Re: [benmoreite] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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In reply to:
Taking your brake hand off the rope while belaying is in no way a part of climbing.

I agree. But when you have an auto-locking device, your second would have to fall and the device would have to fail for the climber to be unsafe because of the lack of hand on the brake strand. The device locks automatically in the event of a fall.

Also, to clarify, I am not taking my hand off the brake strand if I am belaying someone on a climb that is difficult for that person. But even if it were difficult, would the device not lock off in the event of a fall even if you were unconscious as the belayer.

Should we start another thread for this? Also, I would really like to see this tested in some way. I would be willing to provide an ATC Guide if adatesman would test. Yes, I know that BD has a warning against taking your hand off the brake strand in guide mode, so why, you might ask, do we need to test this? I know I'll get killed for this, but I suspect this is done more often than people admit.


johnwesely


Mar 25, 2010, 1:50 PM
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Re: [jt512] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
ClimbClimb wrote:
I still don't really understand what happened in the original accident. Does anyone have a diagram?

For all intents and purposes there is a video of it on Black Diamond's website. It doesn't take much imagination to see how the rope could get away from the belayer, by lowering in that manner.

Moreover, I suspect that the safety of lowering with this method is rope dependent. When lowering with a grigri, it is very difficult to control the rate of descent with certain ropes; when you unlock the device it, it does so suddenly and completely, and if you're not absolutely ready for it, you can lose control of the descent. Oddly enough, you can't accurately predict, based on rope thickness, slickness, or newness, which ropes behave this way. As DavidNinny unhelpfully points out, I haven't used an ATC–Guide, but I suspect based on my experience with the Grigri, that there may be a similar phenomenon.

Jay

I have never done it with the guide, but I would never in a hundred years consider lowering with an autoblocking device without a munter backup. When the thing releases, it is sudden and you almost have no friction whatsoever.


boymeetsrock


Mar 25, 2010, 1:54 PM
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Re: [IsayAutumn] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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The rope COULD slip through the device. There is really nothing else to discuss.

Isayautumn, you are essential right IN PRINCIPLE, that the devise should catch the fall even if your hand is not on the rope. But, the fact of the matter is that the manufacturer tells you not to take you brake hand off the rope. So does climbing "law," if you will. Remember redundancy is VERY important in climbing. Your hand is the redundant part of this belay technique.


Rudmin


Mar 25, 2010, 1:58 PM
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Re: [ClimbClimb] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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ClimbClimb wrote:
jt512 wrote:
For all intents and purposes there is a video of it on Black Diamond's website. It doesn't take much imagination to see how the rope could get away from the belayer, by lowering in that manner.

Thanks Jay. Much clearer after watching it. For some reason, that setup just looks dicey to me, even though I can't explain it in words -- if I was someone doing it, I'd ask questions. But maybe that's just prejudice from reading the accident report.

Did anyone notice several posts from 2009 below the video that, among other things, point out that a reviewer tried it and DROPPED A CLIMBER?

Hopefully that is some comfort to both of the injured parties in this accident.

The difference between the video and the description is that the guy hitched the belay carabiner rather than the hold in the nose. That means that as soon as it stops working as an autoblock, it also stops working as belay device. If you pull up on the nose hole, you at least have an upside down belay device if you pull too hard.


IsayAutumn


Mar 25, 2010, 1:59 PM
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Re: [boymeetsrock] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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boymeetsrock wrote:
The rope COULD slip through the device. There is really nothing else to discuss.

Isayautumn, you are essential right IN PRINCIPLE, that the devise should catch the fall even if your hand is not on the rope. But, the fact of the matter is that the manufacturer tells you not to take you brake hand off the rope. So does climbing "law," if you will. Remember redundancy is VERY important in climbing. Your hand is the redundant part of this belay technique.

OK, you've convinced me. I'll tie the damn rope off if I need to go hands free for any reason. I wouldn't want to violate "climbing law," although I think you guys are being strict constructionists.


jt512


Mar 25, 2010, 2:00 PM
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Re: [IsayAutumn] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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IsayAutumn wrote:
Should we start another thread for this? Also, I would really like to see this tested in some way. I would be willing to provide an ATC Guide if adatesman would test. Yes, I know that BD has a warning against taking your hand off the brake strand in guide mode, so why, you might ask, do we need to test this?

It's untestable. We already know that the device will almost surely lock up. What are you going to do: a sample size of 10 million, using new, old, wet, dry, muddy, thick, and thin ropes from a variety of manufacturers, each tested with a variety of loads?

The problem here is your attitude. You are willingly and knowingly violating a principle that transcends whatever belay device you happen to be using. Maybe the ATC–Guide really is foolproof and will lock up with certainty with no brake hand on the rope. But you keep talking about belaying hands-off being acceptable on "autolocking belay devices" generically. What other autolocking belay devices do you plan to use with a brake hand off the rope? I can tell you for a fact that if you do this for long enough using a grigri it is inevitable that you will eventually drop your partner. Were you aware of that, or would you have haplessly applied your attitude that it is OK to let go with the brake hand on an autolocking belay device to the grigri?

Jay


(This post was edited by jt512 on Mar 25, 2010, 2:03 PM)


jt512


Mar 25, 2010, 2:01 PM
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Re: [IsayAutumn] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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IsayAutumn wrote:
boymeetsrock wrote:
The rope COULD slip through the device. There is really nothing else to discuss.

Isayautumn, you are essential right IN PRINCIPLE, that the devise should catch the fall even if your hand is not on the rope. But, the fact of the matter is that the manufacturer tells you not to take you brake hand off the rope. So does climbing "law," if you will. Remember redundancy is VERY important in climbing. Your hand is the redundant part of this belay technique.

OK, you've convinced me. I'll tie the damn rope off if I need to go hands free for any reason.

OK. Then we're done here.

Jay


IsayAutumn


Mar 25, 2010, 2:07 PM
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Re: [jt512] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
IsayAutumn wrote:
Should we start another thread for this? Also, I would really like to see this tested in some way. I would be willing to provide an ATC Guide if adatesman would test. Yes, I know that BD has a warning against taking your hand off the brake strand in guide mode, so why, you might ask, do we need to test this?

It's untestable. We already know that the device will almost surely lock up. What are you going to do: a sample size of 10 million, using new, old, wet, dry, muddy, thick, and thin ropes from a variety of manufacturers, each tested with a variety of loads?

Edited to add: The reason why I wouldn't do this with a gri-gri or another device is because I haven't learned to do it that way. I have learned through watching partners belay seconds that taking your hands off the brake strand with an ATC Guide in guide mode for a brief moment to do something is OK. That is why I thought it was OK. It wasn't because I just assumed it was OK.

The problem here is your attitude. You are willingly and knowingly violating a principle that transcends whatever belay device you happen to be using. Maybe the ATC–Guide really is foolproof and will lock up with certainty with no brake hand on the rope. But you keep talking about belaying hands-off being acceptable on "autolocking belay devices" generically. What other autolocking belay devices do you plan to use with a brake hand off the rope? I can tell you for a fact that if you do this for long enough using a grigri it is inevitable that you will eventually drop your partner? Were you aware of that, or would you have haplessly applied your attitude that it is OK to let go with the brake hand on an autolocking belay device to the grigri?

Jay

I never said I would let go of the rope with a gri-gri. We have been talking about ATC-Guides the whole time, and if I was unclear, let me clarify beyond any doubt right here: I have been talking about ATC Guides, used in "guide mode" or autoblock mode.

What I am unclear on, and what testing could possibly clear up if someone here can't, is what would happen if you DID have your brake hand on the rope and the ATC Guide failed while in guide mode. If it isn't autolocking, how are you going to stop your climber from falling without getting your hand above the device anyway? Or do you think that the device could fail momentarily, and then your hand on the brake strand would pop it back into autoblocking mode? I'm not trying to be cute here; I'm curious.


(This post was edited by IsayAutumn on Mar 25, 2010, 2:10 PM)


boymeetsrock


Mar 25, 2010, 2:15 PM
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Re: [IsayAutumn] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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IsayAutumn wrote:
jt512 wrote:
IsayAutumn wrote:
Should we start another thread for this? Also, I would really like to see this tested in some way. I would be willing to provide an ATC Guide if adatesman would test. Yes, I know that BD has a warning against taking your hand off the brake strand in guide mode, so why, you might ask, do we need to test this?

It's untestable. We already know that the device will almost surely lock up. What are you going to do: a sample size of 10 million, using new, old, wet, dry, muddy, thick, and thin ropes from a variety of manufacturers, each tested with a variety of loads?

The problem here is your attitude. You are willingly and knowingly violating a principle that transcends whatever belay device you happen to be using. Maybe the ATC–Guide really is foolproof and will lock up with certainty with no brake hand on the rope. But you keep talking about belaying hands-off being acceptable on "autolocking belay devices" generically. What other autolocking belay devices do you plan to use with a brake hand off the rope? I can tell you for a fact that if you do this for long enough using a grigri it is inevitable that you will eventually drop your partner? Were you aware of that, or would you have haplessly applied your attitude that it is OK to let go with the brake hand on an autolocking belay device to the grigri?

Jay

I never said I would let go of the rope with a gri-gri. We have been talking about ATC-Guides the whole time, and if I was unclear, let me clarify beyond any doubt right here: I have been talking about ATC Guides, used in "guide mode" or autoblock mode.

What I am unclear on, and what testing could possibly clear up if someone here can't, is what would happen if you DID have your brake hand on the rope and the ATC Guide failed while in guide mode. If it isn't autolocking, how are you going to stop your climber from falling without getting your hand above the device anyway? Or do you think that the device could fail momentarily, and then your hand on the brake strand would pop it back into autoblocking mode? I'm not trying to be cute here; I'm curious.

I think you may be confusing something here. The reason the rope got away from the OP is because the devise was no longer in auto-block mode. When he lifted the device it was essentially like having the rope run through a 'biner.

Barring catastrophic failure, if the device is in auto-block mode and the rope slips through the device; your grip should be sufficient to arrest the fall.

If the ATC Guide, or any other belay device for that matter, fails catastrophically, you're fucked. But we aren't really talking about catastrophic failure. This is where I think you may be getting confused.


davidnn5


Mar 25, 2010, 2:43 PM
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Re: [IsayAutumn] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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ISay: As others have said, redundancy is always a good thing. Don't forget that any device that relies on friction can be subject to events that prevent enough friction going through the device for it to block. That might be an infinitesimally small chance, particularly if you're paying attention to elements, state of the rope etc, but it's a chance.

JayJaysiewoobles: I love that we now have pet names for each other. I can't wait to consummate this relationship.


patto


Mar 25, 2010, 2:47 PM
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Re: [IsayAutumn] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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I've got your back IsayAutumn.

These things would not be recommended for belaying two at once if they could not be relied upon locking up in a fall. Simple as that. BD, Petzl only recommend never letting go for liability reasons. It would be silly not to.

Holding the brake on an autoblocking plate is like driving a Mack and having your foot our the cabin door ready to stop in case the brakes fail.

These devices work based on the pressure of the loaded climber side squeezing the brake side. Your single hand braking strength isn't even close to this.

I was going to write more but I need to go. Suffice to say there are numerous people out there climbing and using these devices who shouldn't be.


mojomonkey


Mar 25, 2010, 2:54 PM
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IsayAutumn wrote:
But when you have an auto-locking device, your second would have to fall and the device would have to fail for the climber to be unsafe because of the lack of hand on the brake strand.

Not getting bitten by something doesn't make it safe.

Imagine the device was placed such that the rock interferes with the device/carabiner, increasing the chance that it fails to lock. Just because the climber didn't fall and therefore pay a price for that setup doesn't mean you should advocate setting up the device where rock interferes.


Partner cracklover


Mar 25, 2010, 2:57 PM
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Re: [johnwesely] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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johnwesely wrote:
jt512 wrote:
ClimbClimb wrote:
I still don't really understand what happened in the original accident. Does anyone have a diagram?

For all intents and purposes there is a video of it on Black Diamond's website. It doesn't take much imagination to see how the rope could get away from the belayer, by lowering in that manner.

Moreover, I suspect that the safety of lowering with this method is rope dependent. When lowering with a grigri, it is very difficult to control the rate of descent with certain ropes; when you unlock the device it, it does so suddenly and completely, and if you're not absolutely ready for it, you can lose control of the descent. Oddly enough, you can't accurately predict, based on rope thickness, slickness, or newness, which ropes behave this way. As DavidNinny unhelpfully points out, I haven't used an ATC–Guide, but I suspect based on my experience with the Grigri, that there may be a similar phenomenon.

Jay

I have never done it with the guide, but I would never in a hundred years consider lowering with an autoblocking device without a munter backup. When the thing releases, it is sudden and you almost have no friction whatsoever.

My limited experience with the reverso and gigi is exactly as you say, but 1 - I'd never used an ATC guide, and 2 - many (including my wife) said that the ATC guide is much smoother in going in and out of blocking. Since I'd never actually tried it with an ATC Guide, I thought I should do so, rather than claiming (as you are) something I don't know. In testing, I found that they (and the video) are right - it does seem quite easy to moderate the speed of descent by way of pulling the sling used to unblock the device. That's why most people seem to do it that way.

Unfortunately, it would appear that there are scenarios in which the device *does* suddenly, and without warning, release.

It may, (as Jay hypothesizes) be due to rope characteristics, it may be due to the action of the brake strand (as I suggested), it may in this case (though not in vegastradguy's case) have something to do with pulling on the biner rather than the device, or it may be something as basic as interference in the movement of the device by the rock or something else on the anchor. Whatever the cause, it's clear that while this rarely occurs, it can and does happen, and so it should be assumed for safety's sake that it will.

GO


johnwesely


Mar 25, 2010, 3:06 PM
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Re: [cracklover] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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cracklover wrote:
johnwesely wrote:
jt512 wrote:
ClimbClimb wrote:
I still don't really understand what happened in the original accident. Does anyone have a diagram?

For all intents and purposes there is a video of it on Black Diamond's website. It doesn't take much imagination to see how the rope could get away from the belayer, by lowering in that manner.

Moreover, I suspect that the safety of lowering with this method is rope dependent. When lowering with a grigri, it is very difficult to control the rate of descent with certain ropes; when you unlock the device it, it does so suddenly and completely, and if you're not absolutely ready for it, you can lose control of the descent. Oddly enough, you can't accurately predict, based on rope thickness, slickness, or newness, which ropes behave this way. As DavidNinny unhelpfully points out, I haven't used an ATC–Guide, but I suspect based on my experience with the Grigri, that there may be a similar phenomenon.

Jay

I have never done it with the guide, but I would never in a hundred years consider lowering with an autoblocking device without a munter backup. When the thing releases, it is sudden and you almost have no friction whatsoever.

My limited experience with the reverso and gigi is exactly as you say, but 1 - I'd never used an ATC guide, and 2 - many (including my wife) said that the ATC guide is much smoother in going in and out of blocking. Since I'd never actually tried it with an ATC Guide, I thought I should do so, rather than claiming (as you are) something I don't know. In testing, I found that they (and the video) are right - it does seem quite easy to moderate the speed of descent by way of pulling the sling used to unblock the device. That's why most people seem to do it that way.

Unfortunately, it would appear that there are scenarios in which the device *does* suddenly, and without warning, release.

It may, (as Jay hypothesizes) be due to rope characteristics, it may be due to the action of the brake strand (as I suggested), it may in this case (though not in vegastradguy's case) have something to do with pulling on the biner rather than the device, or it may be something as basic as interference in the movement of the device by the rock or something else on the anchor. Whatever the cause, it's clear that while this rarely occurs, it can and does happen, and so it should be assumed for safety's sake that it will.

GO

Sorry about the assumption, it was based on my, apparently incorrect, supposition that all autoblockers would un block the same way. Still, the fact that the Guide can, in certain condition, un block in a manner similar to other autoblockers proves that my prudence is not unwarranted. If the belayer in the accident, was using a munter backup, I doubt this whole thing wouldn't have happened. Sorry, again, for the assumption.


patto


Mar 25, 2010, 5:36 PM
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Autoblocking plates vary significantly in design and aren't meant to provide slip friction when in autoblocking mode. Even if you manage to get slip friction working in an autoblocking configuration working then you will be providing this friction via rope on rope contact. This is not desirable.

Effectively the autoblocking aspect on these devices is binary with very little cross over. If you wish to lower then the friction mechanics are completely different so you better be ready with your brake rope in a brake position to lower. If you for some reason believe it isn't binary it is probably because you had the brake rope in a high friction position anyway.

This all should be obvious if you understand how the device works. Unfortunately many people these days have little understanding of the equipment they use.


(This post was edited by patto on Mar 25, 2010, 5:38 PM)


ensonik


Mar 25, 2010, 6:18 PM
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For those who, like me, couldn't wrap their head about how the belayer had it all setup, this dude over at gunks.com shows it pretty well.

http://gunks.com/...t_Saturday#Post51025


rock_fencer


Mar 25, 2010, 7:45 PM
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there is a difference between hitching the notch and hitching the biner. Hitching the notch and re-directing the pull cord through the anchor rotates the device and removes the pinching of the rope that occurs when the device is loaded in guide mode but the rope still pulls on the biner and the whole setup maintains the friction of a normal TR belay. Hitching the biner and redirecting it not only removes the pinching but also lifts the biner up away from the device essentially providing 2 parallel strands with no friction.

I recently decided to lower a climber when i was in guide mode and hitched the biner. i automatically redirected through the harness leg loop and then through an extended draw off the anchor creating a Z for added friction because i was not sure how the device would release. I'm glad my instinct was right on that account as doing so can clearly have dire consequences. Definitely plan on seeing if hitching the notch provides more control next time out.

Still like people have said, no excuse for taking break hand off the rope and not knowing how to use your equipment. Also if you try something new, then you better think it through and have a backup system you know and trust (aka munter or a redirect)


patto


Mar 25, 2010, 7:59 PM
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rock_fencer wrote:
Still like people have said, no excuse for taking break hand off the rope and not knowing how to use your equipment. Also if you try something new, then you better think it through and have a backup system you know and trust (aka munter or a redirect)

I do know the equipment which is why I know when it is safe to take the brake hand off the rope. Although your caution saved you it sounds like you didn't know your equipment as you still weren't locking off ABOVE the device. If you were running a redirect it should be above the device.

rock_fencer wrote:
there is a difference between hitching the notch and hitching the biner. Hitching the notch and re-directing the pull cord through the anchor rotates the device and removes the pinching of the rope that occurs when the device is loaded in guide mode but the rope still pulls on the biner and the whole setup maintains the friction of a normal TR belay.

It most certainly does not retain the friction of a normal TR belay. The rope needs to be locked off in a direction that is 180 degrees to the load!


Adk


Mar 25, 2010, 8:58 PM
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Re: [jt512] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
IsayAutumn wrote:
jt512 wrote:
IsayAutumn wrote:
Most of the time when I use the device in guide mode, it is high above my head. Often I extend my belay several feet away from the anchor via my tie-in with the rope so I can see my second climbing. Can you explain how I would stop my second from falling with my hand on the brake strand if the device should fail to arrest a fall?

Well, that sounds patently unsafe. If I'm understanding this correctly, you have no way of safely unlocking the device to lower the climber.

Jay

No, you are not understanding it correctly. I would simply walk back to the anchor to release the autoblocking mechanism in order to lower my climber.

It's having the device "high above [your] head" that sounds unsafe. To release the device safely, you have to lock it off, which means getting your brake hand higher than the device, which would vary from awkward to impossible, depending on how high above your head you have rigged the device.

In reply to:
If that is patently unsafe, then take your grievance to BD.

If it's patently unsafe, I'm taking my grievance to you for belaying unsafely. You take it to BD. You're the one who bought the thing.

In reply to:
As I understand it, that is the point of an autoblocking system. Not only to give an extra margin of safety, but to permit hands free use in certain situations.

If you or anyone else would not climb with me because I do that, I'll live with that.

Three and counting.

Jay

Make that 4 and counting!!!

If my belayer takes their hand off the brake side of the rope and I see it somehow...they and the rest of the crag are going to hear me!!!Mad


Adk


Mar 25, 2010, 9:03 PM
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jt512 wrote:
IsayAutumn wrote:
boymeetsrock wrote:
The rope COULD slip through the device. There is really nothing else to discuss.

Isayautumn, you are essential right IN PRINCIPLE, that the devise should catch the fall even if your hand is not on the rope. But, the fact of the matter is that the manufacturer tells you not to take you brake hand off the rope. So does climbing "law," if you will. Remember redundancy is VERY important in climbing. Your hand is the redundant part of this belay technique.

OK, you've convinced me. I'll tie the damn rope off if I need to go hands free for any reason.

OK. Then we're done here.

Jay

That tie-off is what I wanted to hear or just change your set up a tad.Wink


iknowfear


Mar 26, 2010, 12:43 AM
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Re: [patto] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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patto wrote:
I've got your back IsayAutumn.

These things would not be recommended for belaying two at once if they could not be relied upon locking up in a fall. Simple as that. BD, Petzl only recommend never letting go for liability reasons. It would be silly not to.

Holding the brake on an autoblocking plate is like driving a Mack and having your foot our the cabin door ready to stop in case the brakes fail.

These devices work based on the pressure of the loaded climber side squeezing the brake side. Your single hand braking strength isn't even close to this.

I was going to write more but I need to go. Suffice to say there are numerous people out there climbing and using these devices who shouldn't be.

Count me in as well. Used gi-gi's and the atc-guide quite extensively.

Although, one "could" think of a scenario where the Autoblock gets out of action: When taking in the slack you accidently pull the device onto your self-belay-sling(selbstsicherung) leaving it slightly out of the pull direction.
If at that precise moment the climber weights the rope, the autoblock might not engage.
Edited to add: 1.At this moment you are holding the brake rope anyway.
2.If you do not understand and check(&re-check) the safety of your belay, your second is fucked regardless of the mechanism used.


(This post was edited by iknowfear on Mar 26, 2010, 2:16 AM)


Partner j_ung


Mar 26, 2010, 5:16 AM
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Re: [jt512] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
We already know that the device will almost surely lock up.

Not that I'm an authority on the matter, but I'm not convinced that's the case. If somebody's brake hand is off the rope, then it's also entirely possible that slack is piling up in the system. Will an auto-blocking device catch a fall in that circumstance? With 3 feet of slack? With 10 feet? 20 feet? Also, and not to nitpick, whether or not the belay device works is, I think, only one issue that can arise when you aren't actively belaying the second. There are others.

Personally, If I take my hand off the brake -- while I'm still on belay -- with any device, it's only after I've tied a knot of some sort. If I'm using an auto-blocker or a Gri-gri, it's an overhand on a bight in the brake strand. If I'm using a munter or a tube-style device, it's a mule hitch. But even those situations are quite rare, they're for better reasons than personal comfort and they typically involve a climber already hanging on the rope.


IsayAutumn


Mar 26, 2010, 5:23 AM
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Re: [patto] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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patto wrote:
Autoblocking plates vary significantly in design and aren't meant to provide slip friction when in autoblocking mode. Even if you manage to get slip friction working in an autoblocking configuration working then you will be providing this friction via rope on rope contact. This is not desirable.

Effectively the autoblocking aspect on these devices is binary with very little cross over. If you wish to lower then the friction mechanics are completely different so you better be ready with your brake rope in a brake position to lower. If you for some reason believe it isn't binary it is probably because you had the brake rope in a high friction position anyway.

This all should be obvious if you understand how the device works. Unfortunately many people these days have little understanding of the equipment they use.

And many people in this thread are coming up with hypotheses based on exactly 0 experience with an ATC Guide.


IsayAutumn


Mar 26, 2010, 5:29 AM
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Re: [patto] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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patto wrote:
I've got your back IsayAutumn.

These things would not be recommended for belaying two at once if they could not be relied upon locking up in a fall. Simple as that. BD, Petzl only recommend never letting go for liability reasons. It would be silly not to.

Holding the brake on an autoblocking plate is like driving a Mack and having your foot our the cabin door ready to stop in case the brakes fail.

These devices work based on the pressure of the loaded climber side squeezing the brake side. Your single hand braking strength isn't even close to this.

I was going to write more but I need to go. Suffice to say there are numerous people out there climbing and using these devices who shouldn't be.

Patto, thanks for clearly expressing something that I was plainly unable to. It makes sense that BD would, for liability reasons, have this in their manual.

What kills me is, there are people in this thread piling on me who HAVE NEVER USED an ATC Guide. They have no place in this discussion.


swede


Mar 26, 2010, 7:34 AM
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Re: [IsayAutumn] Interesting accident at the gunks on Saturday [In reply to]
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[quote "IsayAutumn
What kills me is, there are people in this thread piling on me who HAVE NEVER USED an ATC Guide. They have no place in this discussion./quote]

Please stop getting itched and start listening. People who have never used an ATC guide do have a place in this discussion. They might have other knowledge like;

- VERY long climbing experience
- mechanics
- risk handling
- or using the Reverso.

Risk handling will tell you, amongst other things, how important it is to hard wire things that must not fail, ie not letting go of your brake hand. Or that complicating things increases risk.

Understanding mechanics will tell you that lowering by releasing the autoblock function is something potentially very risky.

I know this might be slightly off topic, but if you do trust the autoblock function for a few seconds WITHOUT telling your second, he/she might be doing a dangerous move during just those seconds.

I think guide-mode is an excellent idea, but it complicates something that trial and error has made safe and invites to risky behavior (jackets, no hands etc). The GriGri was also a great idea - but accidents did in fact increase (at least in the beginning).


(This post was edited by swede on Mar 26, 2010, 7:37 AM)

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