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accident ... possibly belayer error
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bearbreeder


Jul 9, 2012, 12:04 AM
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accident ... possibly belayer error
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http://www.abc4.com/...wlEu2_2x1w9JTlQ.cspx

Preliminary facts point to a problem with the person who was holding the victim's rock climbing rope.


sbaclimber


Jul 9, 2012, 4:05 AM
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Re: [bearbreeder] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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In reply to:
Witnesses say the victim's fall was cushioned by a rock outcropping about half way down the [f]all.
Definitely not how I would've written that sentence.Crazy


(This post was edited by sbaclimber on Jul 9, 2012, 4:07 AM)


bassfreak


Jul 9, 2012, 10:26 AM
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Re: [sbaclimber] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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Yea that was super awesome of them how they put it. I was the climber who fell/dropped in this story I figured it would make its way on here so I might as well reply. Anyways what happened or I assume happened from what everyone else has told me was, first I had a person who was new to belaying but still new how to belay so I felt safe I also know the guy well so I felt comfortable. Second I had just bought a smaller rope so he wasnt used to the speed that it fed through he was using an atc. Anyways I had just finished climbing Goodros wall at the storm mountian picnic area an awesome climb by the way and was being lowered this was all off of a top rope by the way at some point while he was lowering me I guess the rope burned his hand (no gloves on) and he panicked letting go of the rope. It was about a 25ft fall and I opted to call the paramedics because of distorted vision and friends telling me they could see my skull through a cut in the back of my head. Everything turned out well for me just a couple of staples, mild concussion, and a lot of jacked up muscles I hope to be back to climbing in a week or two. I hope someone takes something away from this go back to the basics look at belay technique make sure its well understood this is an easily avoidable situation that could have turned out worse then it did. Also I hope my ignorance encourages people to buy a helmet I'm going out today to get mine they can save your life. Feel free to message me if you have any questions on the incident. And I still dont know how a rock cushions you thanks ABC.


gblauer
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Jul 9, 2012, 12:56 PM
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Re: [bassfreak] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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Hey...I am so glad that you are ok.

My belay partner dropped me and I broke my back. It's screwed with my "head" ever since. Be kind to yourself and allow the time to heal before you jump back on the rock.

Circle your wagons and be very selective about your belayers.

Best of luck to you,
Gail


patto


Jul 9, 2012, 1:42 PM
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Re: [bassfreak] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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Thanks for posting. It is always good to hear about such incidents directly. Even better when it's confirmed that there was (mostly) no harm done. Heal up!


He may be your friend but now I am going to publicly admonish him. -Sorry.

bassfreak wrote:
he was lowering me I guess the rope burned his hand (no gloves on) and he panicked letting go of the rope.

People like this scare me. I don't care how new to belaying you are. Yes people can screw up, particularly if not taught well or inexperienced. However anybody who panics and lets go is clearly placing their own mild discomfort above the life of another. Its not a quality I want in somebody that I climb with.


majid_sabet


Jul 9, 2012, 5:56 PM
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Re: [bassfreak] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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You can use lower dia rope with ATC however, you need to redirect the flow of rope in to another carabiner to add extra friction.

I was belaying a friend on 8mm rope just recently and used an extra biner from leg loop and used gloves. using gloves should be an standard habit when belying any size rope .


bearbreeder


Jul 9, 2012, 9:01 PM
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Re: [bassfreak] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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thank you for posting ... glad you are ok

if you could answer a question or two which would help satisfy my curiosity

- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

thanks and best wishes


socalclimber


Jul 10, 2012, 6:16 AM
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Re: [bearbreeder] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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I was going to ask the very same questions. The one thing that is really scary these days is the blind trust people are placing on inexperienced belayers. If you are going to use one, make sure there is an extra hand around to act as a back up belay. It's such a simple way to keep things like this from happening.

The OP is correct that the smaller diameter ropes require a bit more attention.

Was the rope dry treated? If so, a new dry treated rope can be really slick.

Sounds like you got off lucky. Glad your ok!


healyje


Jul 10, 2012, 7:40 AM
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Re: [bearbreeder] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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bassfreak, glad you weren't hurt worse.

With regard to these questions, though:

In reply to:
- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

Outside of likely being contributing factors relative to a clearly inexperienced belayer, they should not distract from the fact the principal root causes here are inexperience and judgment. They would not be an issue of any kind with an experienced belayer and shouldn't be allowed to confuse the issues at hand in this case beyond simply acting as a precautionary heads up to new belayers.

The issue of judgment, however, is more difficult, especially for new and intermediate climbers. Simply put, though, you absolutely have to take as objective a stance as possible when it comes to leaving the ground.

Over the past couple of decades gym/sport climbing have very much altered climbing with it increasingly becoming a more social and group activity. And the close proximity and familiarity experienced in gyms can also affect our perceptions, even outside of close friendships or familial relationships. Climbing has similarly become much more familiar at large in our society and media and the perception of outright danger has also been lessened over time.

But this is where climbing isn't just dangerous, it's fundamentally and inescapably a life and death affair and you can't afford to let familiarity or inter-personal awkwardness of any kind whatsoever cloud your personal judgment around your own or your partner's safety.


(This post was edited by healyje on Jul 10, 2012, 7:45 AM)


dagibbs


Jul 10, 2012, 8:55 AM
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Re: [bearbreeder] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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bearbreeder wrote:
thank you for posting ... glad you are ok

if you could answer a question or two which would help satisfy my curiosity

- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

thanks and best wishes

Also, did they lower by letting the rope slide through their hand or hands?

I was taught that ATC (and other plate) lower technique involved the rope always being held in a hand, and any downward movement of the climber being done by the rope being fed through the device by arm motion, rather than by allowing slippage through the hands.


jt512


Jul 10, 2012, 9:06 AM
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Re: [dagibbs] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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dagibbs wrote:
bearbreeder wrote:
thank you for posting ... glad you are ok

if you could answer a question or two which would help satisfy my curiosity

- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

thanks and best wishes

Also, did they lower by letting the rope slide through their hand or hands?

I was taught that ATC (and other plate) lower technique involved the rope always being held in a hand, and any downward movement of the climber being done by the rope being fed through the device by arm motion, rather than by allowing slippage through the hands.

All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).

Jay


dagibbs


Jul 10, 2012, 10:26 AM
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Re: [jt512] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
dagibbs wrote:
bearbreeder wrote:
thank you for posting ... glad you are ok

if you could answer a question or two which would help satisfy my curiosity

- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

thanks and best wishes

Also, did they lower by letting the rope slide through their hand or hands?

I was taught that ATC (and other plate) lower technique involved the rope always being held in a hand, and any downward movement of the climber being done by the rope being fed through the device by arm motion, rather than by allowing slippage through the hands.

All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).

Jay

If you have to worry about the force on the anchor from lowering then there's something seriously wrong with your anchor.

And, you can actually get a pretty smooth lower, not a choppy one, if you do it well.


jomagam


Jul 10, 2012, 10:33 AM
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Re: [dagibbs] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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dagibbs wrote:
jt512 wrote:
dagibbs wrote:
bearbreeder wrote:
thank you for posting ... glad you are ok

if you could answer a question or two which would help satisfy my curiosity

- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

thanks and best wishes

Also, did they lower by letting the rope slide through their hand or hands?

I was taught that ATC (and other plate) lower technique involved the rope always being held in a hand, and any downward movement of the climber being done by the rope being fed through the device by arm motion, rather than by allowing slippage through the hands.

All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).

Jay

If you have to worry about the force on the anchor from lowering then there's something seriously wrong with your anchor.

And, you can actually get a pretty smooth lower, not a choppy one, if you do it well.

And you get a smooth lower with Jay's technique every time. Both hands are always on the rope with that one, so it's safer.


dagibbs


Jul 10, 2012, 10:45 AM
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Re: [jomagam] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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jomagam wrote:
dagibbs wrote:
jt512 wrote:
dagibbs wrote:
bearbreeder wrote:
thank you for posting ... glad you are ok

if you could answer a question or two which would help satisfy my curiosity

- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

thanks and best wishes

Also, did they lower by letting the rope slide through their hand or hands?

I was taught that ATC (and other plate) lower technique involved the rope always being held in a hand, and any downward movement of the climber being done by the rope being fed through the device by arm motion, rather than by allowing slippage through the hands.

All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).

Jay

If you have to worry about the force on the anchor from lowering then there's something seriously wrong with your anchor.

And, you can actually get a pretty smooth lower, not a choppy one, if you do it well.

And you get a smooth lower with Jay's technique every time. Both hands are always on the rope with that one, so it's safer.

And, if you're inexperienced, and you're dealing with a rope that is thinner, or slicker, or the person you're lowering is heavier than you're used to, or for whatever reason, the rope feeds faster than you're expecting it, and it burns you and you let go, you have a dropped climber.

Yes, even if the rope is burning you, as a belayer you should hold on. But your natural istinct (and it is a strong one) is to let go of/drop something that is burning you.

Also, where did I suggest that you didn't have both hands on the rope at all times?


jt512


Jul 10, 2012, 10:53 AM
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Re: [dagibbs] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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dagibbs wrote:
jt512 wrote:
dagibbs wrote:
bearbreeder wrote:
thank you for posting ... glad you are ok

if you could answer a question or two which would help satisfy my curiosity

- what diameter was the rope
- do you know if the belayer kept both hands below the atc
- was it a standard atc, or something with more friction like an atc xp or guide

thanks and best wishes

Also, did they lower by letting the rope slide through their hand or hands?

I was taught that ATC (and other plate) lower technique involved the rope always being held in a hand, and any downward movement of the climber being done by the rope being fed through the device by arm motion, rather than by allowing slippage through the hands.

All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).

Jay

If you have to worry about the force on the anchor from lowering then there's something seriously wrong with your anchor.

Sometimes we have occasion to lower off a single biner, don't we? On those rare occasions, when I have no redundancy, I want the force on that bolt and biner to be both as low and as constant as possible.

In reply to:
And, you can actually get a pretty smooth lower, not a choppy one, if you do it well.

I don't want to be pretty smoothly lowered.

Jay


jomagam


Jul 10, 2012, 10:57 AM
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Re: [dagibbs] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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dagibbs wrote:
And, if you're inexperienced, and you're dealing with a rope that is thinner, or slicker, or the person you're lowering is heavier than you're used to, or for whatever reason, the rope feeds faster than you're expecting it, and it burns you and you let go, you have a dropped climber.

Yes, even if the rope is burning you, as a belayer you should hold on. But your natural istinct (and it is a strong one) is to let go of/drop something that is burning you.

Also, where did I suggest that you didn't have both hands on the rope at all times?

I'd argue that you want the most simple technique and fewest moving parts if you're so inexperienced. That is the slide technique.


dagibbs


Jul 10, 2012, 11:42 AM
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Re: [jt512] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
dagibbs wrote:
jt512 wrote:
dagibbs wrote:
Also, did they lower by letting the rope slide through their hand or hands?

I was taught that ATC (and other plate) lower technique involved the rope always being held in a hand, and any downward movement of the climber being done by the rope being fed through the device by arm motion, rather than by allowing slippage through the hands.

All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).

Jay

If you have to worry about the force on the anchor from lowering then there's something seriously wrong with your anchor.

Sometimes we have occasion to lower off a single biner, don't we? On those rare occasions, when I have no redundancy, I want the force on that bolt and biner to be both as low and as constant as possible.

Last time I had to bail, I left a biner on the top two bolts. I don't like being on only one bolt. Then again, that might be over-protective, I'll fall on only one bolt if it is the first bolt of a climb. And if I think the bolt will catch a lead fall, then I'm sure it will hold for a choppy lower.

Same for a carabiner.

In reply to:

In reply to:
And, you can actually get a pretty smooth lower, not a choppy one, if you do it well.

I don't want to be pretty smoothly lowered.

Jay

I'd rather have a slightly choppy lower where the belayer always has full control than a smooth one with the risk they'll lose control.

Now, good solid belayers, with lots of practice -- sure go for the perfectly smooth lower. But if I'm dealing with a new(ish) belayer, then I'll take safety over smoothness. Then, as they learn the ropes, they can practice on being smoother.

jomagam wrote:
I'd argue that you want the most simple technique and fewest moving parts if you're so inexperienced. That is the slide technique.

And I'm arguing for one that has less chance of failure.


patto


Jul 10, 2012, 12:10 PM
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Re: [jt512] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).
Jay

Oh dear. If you are that worried about unnecessary forces then you should rapping or self lowering!

Hand over hand (or hand to hand) is a very valid way of control over the rope. In fact it is superior as it does not rely on palm to rope DYNAMIC friction. A static grip will not cause heat and will be stronger and more controllable.


EDIT: Added text to clarify.


(This post was edited by patto on Jul 11, 2012, 1:21 AM)


jomagam


Jul 10, 2012, 12:25 PM
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Re: [patto] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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patto wrote:

Hand over hand (or hand to hand) is a very valid way of control over the rope. In fact it is superior as it does not rely on palm to rope friction.

Really ? What stops the rope from slipping through your hands if not palm to rope friction ?


bassfreak


Jul 10, 2012, 12:28 PM
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Re: [bearbreeder] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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The rope wasn't much smaller just smaller then what the belayer had previously used it was a 9.4, belayer had only one hand below the atc with no glove on, it was on a standard atc. And the reason I had trust with the guy was first I've known him for a while and there were other more experience climbers around who were supposed to be watching him for any mistakes so that this wouldn't happen. There were 3 other climbers there who had the experience to know how to properly use the device and educate the belayer they apparently got side tracked and were talking because they assumed everything was under control. We all became complacent because everything had worked fine the previous times and the newer belay seemed to have a firm grasp on what to do and was displaying proper technique minus the lack of gloves. I feel the main reason this accident happened was first a lack of experience/supervision and myself becoming complacent thinking that since I'm not leading or setting gear, that I'm on a top rope what goes wrong on a top rope. That mentality is what helped contribute to getting injured. I failed to recognize that its still a dangerous sport no matter how secure I felt. Everyone was just caught up in having a good time and led us to having a lapse in judgment.


jt512


Jul 10, 2012, 12:28 PM
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Re: [patto] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
All that accomplishes is choppy lowering, motion sickness, and unnecessary force on the anchor. You should be able to maintain complete control of the rope and the speed of lowering while letting the rope slide through your hands (with both hands on the brake side of the rope at all times—no exceptions).
Jay

Oh dear. If you are that worried about unnecessary forces then you should rapping or self lowering!

I'm "worried" just enough to want to be lowered as smoothly as possible.

In reply to:
In fact it is superior as it does not rely on palm to rope friction.

Actually, compared with letting the rope run through your hands, hand-over-hand lowering relies more on palm-to-rope friction, because you have to actually grip the rope. Letting the rope slide through your hands relies primarily on the braking force of the device. You can lower in full control with almost no grip at all by keeping the rope tightly bent over the edge of the belay device.

Jay


bassfreak


Jul 10, 2012, 12:34 PM
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Oh they were also supposed to be using the slide technique which I had suggested. Why he didn't have both hands on the rope I don't know yet.


jt512


Jul 10, 2012, 12:55 PM
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Re: [bassfreak] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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bassfreak wrote:
The rope wasn't much smaller just smaller then what the belayer had previously used it was a 9.4, belayer had only one hand below the atc with no glove on, it was on a standard atc.

One reason you got dropped is that your rope was way too thin for a standard ATC. You'd likely have been dropped if you fell as well.

Jay


(This post was edited by jt512 on Jul 10, 2012, 1:30 PM)


jae8908


Jul 10, 2012, 5:37 PM
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jomagam wrote:
patto wrote:

Hand over hand (or hand to hand) is a very valid way of control over the rope. In fact it is superior as it does not rely on palm to rope friction.

Really ? What stops the rope from slipping through your hands if not palm to rope friction ?
gri gri


jomagam


Jul 10, 2012, 6:06 PM
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jae8908 wrote:
jomagam wrote:
patto wrote:

Hand over hand (or hand to hand) is a very valid way of control over the rope. In fact it is superior as it does not rely on palm to rope friction.

Really ? What stops the rope from slipping through your hands if not palm to rope friction ?
gri gri

gri gri != atc


bearbreeder


Jul 10, 2012, 6:56 PM
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bassfreak wrote:
The rope wasn't much smaller just smaller then what the belayer had previously used it was a 9.4, belayer had only one hand below the atc with no glove on, it was on a standard atc. And the reason I had trust with the guy was first I've known him for a while and there were other more experience climbers around who were supposed to be watching him for any mistakes so that this wouldn't happen. There were 3 other climbers there who had the experience to know how to properly use the device and educate the belayer they apparently got side tracked and were talking because they assumed everything was under control. We all became complacent because everything had worked fine the previous times and the newer belay seemed to have a firm grasp on what to do and was displaying proper technique minus the lack of gloves. I feel the main reason this accident happened was first a lack of experience/supervision and myself becoming complacent thinking that since I'm not leading or setting gear, that I'm on a top rope what goes wrong on a top rope. That mentality is what helped contribute to getting injured. I failed to recognize that its still a dangerous sport no matter how secure I felt. Everyone was just caught up in having a good time and led us to having a lapse in judgment.


again thanks for the reply

while it is absolutely true that you should never get dropped under any circumstances, thinner ropes can be slicker through a standard ATC, with ropes under 9.5 mm i insist one being belayed by something with more friction such as a guide/reverso/grigri

there is a casualness about lowering that i often see ... usually its someone sliding the rope through the device with one hand, sometimes keeping the other hand on the rope above the atc ... sounds like something similar happened ...

gloves should not be needed for TRing IMO, if the belayer is experienced and vigilant ...

again, best wishes ...


notapplicable


Jul 10, 2012, 9:18 PM
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patto wrote:
Hand over hand (or hand to hand) is a very valid way of control over the rope. In fact it is superior as it does not rely on palm to rope friction.

MADNESS!

The fact that more than one person is in here promoting this notion is blowing my mind.

I understand that not everyone has, or even wants, callused hands but those people should use gloves. Going hand over hand while lowering your climber is the worst/most awkward/clumsy/convoluted possible solution to the problem.


patto


Jul 11, 2012, 1:28 AM
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jt512 wrote:
Actually, compared with letting the rope run through your hands, hand-over-hand lowering relies more on palm-to-rope friction, because you have to actually grip the rope. Letting the rope slide through your hands relies primarily on the braking force of the device. You can lower in full control with almost no grip at all by keeping the rope tightly bent over the edge of the belay device.

Quite untrue. Dynamic friction is lower than static friction.


notapplicable wrote:
MADNESS!

The fact that more than one person is in here promoting this notion is blowing my mind.

I understand that not everyone has, or even wants, callused hands but those people should use gloves. Going hand over hand while lowering your climber is the worst/most awkward/clumsy/convoluted possible solution to the problem.

Absolutely not. A static grip is fundamentally more controllable than relying on dynamic friction.

I'm not promoting this as the best option. If this is an issue then the device friction is lower than it should be. However if you do find yourself in the situation of a high load then hand over hand is comprehensibly superior and much more controllable than relying on dynamic friction with your hand or glove.


roninthorne


Jul 11, 2012, 7:31 AM
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majid_sabet wrote:
...using gloves should be an standard habit when belying any size rope .

Bullshit. After 30+ years on rock, climbing across the U.S. with hundreds of people, I've never seen anyone (who knew what they were doing) come close to dropping someone, losing a belay, or losing control of their rappel because they weren't wearing gloves. The rope starts warming your hand, you slow the rate of feed by lowering your brake and and increasing friction on the DEVICE. This was a bad belay. Period.


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Jul 11, 2012, 8:18 AM
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jt512 wrote:
bassfreak wrote:
The rope wasn't much smaller just smaller then what the belayer had previously used it was a 9.4, belayer had only one hand below the atc with no glove on, it was on a standard atc.

One reason you got dropped is that your rope was way too thin for a standard ATC. You'd likely have been dropped if you fell as well.

Use 2 carabiners instead of one with the ATC and there'll be enough device friction to control the lowering even with a half rope.

rob.calm


jt512


Jul 11, 2012, 10:11 AM
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patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
Actually, compared with letting the rope run through your hands, hand-over-hand lowering relies more on palm-to-rope friction, because you have to actually grip the rope. Letting the rope slide through your hands relies primarily on the braking force of the device. You can lower in full control with almost no grip at all by keeping the rope tightly bent over the edge of the belay device.

Quite untrue. Dynamic friction is lower than static friction.

Right. And lowering hand over hand uses static friction, whereas letting the rope slide through your hands uses dynamic friction. Therefore, hand-to-rope friction is a greater percentage of the force used to control the rope while lowering using the hand-over-hand method vs letting rope slide through the device. That was my point, and you have supplied the reason why it is true.

Jay


patto


Jul 11, 2012, 10:33 AM
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jt512 wrote:
Right. And lowering hand over hand uses static friction, whereas letting the rope slide through your hands uses dynamic friction. Therefore, hand-to-rope friction is a greater percentage of the force used to control the rope while lowering using the hand-over-hand method vs letting rope slide through the device. That was my point, and you have supplied the reason why it is true.

Jay

Your logic does not compute Jay.

If the rope is sliding through your hand then you need to grip it harder to get the same braking force than if it isn't sliding through your hand. More to the point though, your aren't dissipating energy as heat in your hand so there is no possibility of rope burn.

Static lowering clearly gives better control.


(Not that I'm advocating that it is by any means necessary if you have sufficient friction in the device. Personally I normally just let rope slide through my hands.)


majid_sabet


Jul 11, 2012, 12:20 PM
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roninthorne wrote:
majid_sabet wrote:
...using gloves should be an standard habit when belying any size rope .

Bullshit. After 30+ years on rock, climbing across the U.S. with hundreds of people, I've never seen anyone (who knew what they were doing) come close to dropping someone, losing a belay, or losing control of their rappel because they weren't wearing gloves. The rope starts warming your hand, you slow the rate of feed by lowering your brake and and increasing friction on the DEVICE. This was a bad belay. Period.

in my 30 years climbing, mountaineering and rescue work all over the world, I seen plenty of people (both n00bs and pros) that somehow lost control of their belay ( sudden leader fall shock, rockfall on their head....etc) cause their brunt hand could not control the rope so all it take one unexpectedly fuc8up to end up servery hurt or dead.

gloves are an addition to safe climbing just like locking biner, helmet and so fort


flame is on


(This post was edited by majid_sabet on Jul 11, 2012, 12:23 PM)


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patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
Right. And lowering hand over hand uses static friction, whereas letting the rope slide through your hands uses dynamic friction. Therefore, hand-to-rope friction is a greater percentage of the force used to control the rope while lowering using the hand-over-hand method vs letting rope slide through the device. That was my point, and you have supplied the reason why it is true.

Jay

Your logic does not compute Jay.

If the rope is sliding through your hand then you need to grip it harder to get the same braking force than if it isn't sliding through your hand. More to the point though, your aren't dissipating energy as heat in your hand so there is no possibility of rope burn.

Static lowering clearly gives better control.


(Not that I'm advocating that it is by any means necessary if you have sufficient friction in the device. Personally I normally just let rope slide through my hands.)

Is anyone else getting powerful flashbacks from recdot? Wow, this thread feels almost identical!

GO


jt512


Jul 11, 2012, 12:35 PM
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patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
Right. And lowering hand over hand uses static friction, whereas letting the rope slide through your hands uses dynamic friction. Therefore, hand-to-rope friction is a greater percentage of the force used to control the rope while lowering using the hand-over-hand method vs letting rope slide through the device. That was my point, and you have supplied the reason why it is true.

Jay

Your logic does not compute Jay.

If the rope is sliding through your hand then you need to grip it harder to get the same braking force than if it isn't sliding through your hand.

And the harder you grip the rope, the greater the friction between the rope and your hand. You keep proving my point, but failing to realize it.

In reply to:
Static lowering clearly gives better control.

Define "control." Over most of the range of speeds that you'd want to lower someone, letting the rope slip through your hands gives better control over speed than lowering hand over hand. Letting the rope slip through your hands also gives better control of the smoothness (constancy of speed) than lowering hand over hand does. So, I'm not sure what aspect of "control" you think is greater by lowering hand over hand.

In reply to:
(Not that I'm advocating that it is by any means necessary if you have sufficient friction in the device. Personally I normally just let rope slide through my hands.)

As you should, since you have more control over smoothness and speed.

Jay


(This post was edited by jt512 on Jul 11, 2012, 12:57 PM)


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Jul 11, 2012, 1:17 PM
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jt512 wrote:
patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
Right. And lowering hand over hand uses static friction, whereas letting the rope slide through your hands uses dynamic friction. Therefore, hand-to-rope friction is a greater percentage of the force used to control the rope while lowering using the hand-over-hand method vs letting rope slide through the device. That was my point, and you have supplied the reason why it is true.

Jay

Your logic does not compute Jay.

If the rope is sliding through your hand then you need to grip it harder to get the same braking force than if it isn't sliding through your hand.

And the harder you grip the rope, the greater the friction between the rope and your hand. You keep proving my point, but failing to realize it.

In reply to:
Static lowering clearly gives better control.

Define "control." Over most of the range of speeds that you'd want to lower someone, letting the rope slip through your hands gives better control over speed than lowering hand over hand. Letting the rope slip through your hands also gives better control of the smoothness (constancy of speed) than lowering hand over hand does. So, I'm not sure what aspect of "control" you think is greater by lowering hand over hand.

In reply to:
(Not that I'm advocating that it is by any means necessary if you have sufficient friction in the device. Personally I normally just let rope slide through my hands.)

As you should, since you have more control over smoothness and speed.

Jay

With the rope in the same position for both types of grip and the same rate of lowering, the friction will need to be identical. We are not measuring friction like in a physics class, we are creating it.

The difference is that letting the rope slide through your hand will take more grip force of the hand to achieve the same friction as holding it in your hand statically because of the difference between static and kinetic friction. If the difference is significant, which I can't recall from physics class, then the amount of force needed for the sliding grip will be too much for him to handle as was the case. It may have also happened with any hand technique since the belayer was clearly trying to do something beyond his ability.

But sheesh, the friction for lowering is achieved through the rope on the device and it is always kinetic. The hand should just be controlling the rope, not holding the weight of the climber.

Dave


jt512


Jul 11, 2012, 2:14 PM
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drector wrote:
jt512 wrote:
patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
Right. And lowering hand over hand uses static friction, whereas letting the rope slide through your hands uses dynamic friction. Therefore, hand-to-rope friction is a greater percentage of the force used to control the rope while lowering using the hand-over-hand method vs letting rope slide through the device. That was my point, and you have supplied the reason why it is true.

Jay

Your logic does not compute Jay.

If the rope is sliding through your hand then you need to grip it harder to get the same braking force than if it isn't sliding through your hand.

And the harder you grip the rope, the greater the friction between the rope and your hand. You keep proving my point, but failing to realize it.

In reply to:
Static lowering clearly gives better control.

Define "control." Over most of the range of speeds that you'd want to lower someone, letting the rope slip through your hands gives better control over speed than lowering hand over hand. Letting the rope slip through your hands also gives better control of the smoothness (constancy of speed) than lowering hand over hand does. So, I'm not sure what aspect of "control" you think is greater by lowering hand over hand.

In reply to:
(Not that I'm advocating that it is by any means necessary if you have sufficient friction in the device. Personally I normally just let rope slide through my hands.)

As you should, since you have more control over smoothness and speed.

Jay

With the rope in the same position for both types of grip and the same rate of lowering, the friction will need to be identical. We are not measuring friction like in a physics class, we are creating it.

Friction is proportional to the normal force. We are creating the normal force with our grip. The harder we grip the rope, the greater the normal force, and hence the greater the friction.

In reply to:
The difference is that letting the rope slide through your hand will take more grip force of the hand to achieve the same friction as holding it in your hand statically because of the difference between static and kinetic friction.

I doubt that the difference between the kinetic and static coefficients of friction is large enough to make a practical difference. Say I have the rope locked off. If I keep the rope in the same position but want to let rope start sliding through the device, I loosen my grip, and hence reduce the friction. If I want to stop the rope from sliding, I tighten my grip, and hence increase the friction. If I want to lower hand over hand with the rope in this same position I am likely going to maintain about this same amount of grip (force) on the rope. Therefore, I am using more hand-to-rope friction by lowering hand over hand than by letting rope slip through the device.

In theory, lowering hand over hand I could maintain nearly the lightest possible grip on the rope that prevents the rope from sliding through the device, in which case my grip force would be less than when letting rope slide through the device; but (1) I doubt people grip the rope that loosely, and (2) my argument with Patto has not been about girp force, but about friction.

In reply to:
But sheesh, the friction for lowering is achieved through the rope on the device and it is always kinetic. The hand should just be controlling the rope, not holding the weight of the climber.

Yeah, basically that's true. The belayer dropped the climber because he was using a rope too thin for the belay device, and I suspect that he did not have the brake side of the rope sufficientlybent over the device for maximum braking.

Jay


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Jul 11, 2012, 4:18 PM
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myself wrote:
jt512 wrote:
patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
Right. And lowering hand over hand uses static friction, whereas letting the rope slide through your hands uses dynamic friction. Therefore, hand-to-rope friction is a greater percentage of the force used to control the rope while lowering using the hand-over-hand method vs letting rope slide through the device. That was my point, and you have supplied the reason why it is true.

Jay

Your logic does not compute Jay.

If the rope is sliding through your hand then you need to grip it harder to get the same braking force than if it isn't sliding through your hand.

And the harder you grip the rope, the greater the friction between the rope and your hand. You keep proving my point, but failing to realize it.

In reply to:
Static lowering clearly gives better control.

Define "control." Over most of the range of speeds that you'd want to lower someone, letting the rope slip through your hands gives better control over speed than lowering hand over hand. Letting the rope slip through your hands also gives better control of the smoothness (constancy of speed) than lowering hand over hand does. So, I'm not sure what aspect of "control" you think is greater by lowering hand over hand.

In reply to:
(Not that I'm advocating that it is by any means necessary if you have sufficient friction in the device. Personally I normally just let rope slide through my hands.)

As you should, since you have more control over smoothness and speed.

Jay

With the rope in the same position for both types of grip and the same rate of lowering, the friction will need to be identical. We are not measuring friction like in a physics class, we are creating it.

The difference is that letting the rope slide through your hand will take more grip force of the hand to achieve the same friction as holding it in your hand statically because of the difference between static and kinetic friction. If the difference is significant, which I can't recall from physics class, then the amount of force needed for the sliding grip will be too much for him to handle as was the case. It may have also happened with any hand technique since the belayer was clearly trying to do something beyond his ability.

But sheesh, the friction for lowering is achieved through the rope on the device and it is always kinetic. The hand should just be controlling the rope, not holding the weight of the climber.

Dave

Dang. I was all wrong once I gave it some thought. My pedestrian knowledge of physics is more of a hinderance than a help. Well, mostly wrong.

Dave


patto


Jul 12, 2012, 7:37 AM
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jt512 wrote:
my argument with Patto has not been about girp force, but about friction.
I'm sorry but what are you saying here?

Do I need to quote myself?

patto wrote:
If the rope is sliding through your hand then you need to grip it harder to get the same braking force than if it isn't sliding through your hand.

It seems that your misunderstanding about the difference between kinetic and static coefficients of friction seem to be the issue.

jt512 wrote:
I doubt that the difference between the kinetic and static coefficients of friction is large enough to make a practical difference.

That is precisely why you get more control with a static grip. Its the reason why ABS exists on cars! Furthermore if its start moving rapidly then your hand glazes and friction further decreases. This is the runaway condition that can cause such accidents.

Its no different if you are rapping with a thin line. If you don't have gloves then hand over hand is the safe way to stay in control.


jt512


Jul 12, 2012, 12:45 PM
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patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
my argument with Patto has not been about girp force, but about friction.
I'm sorry but what are you saying here?

No matter how hard you are gripping the rope, if the rope is not moving through your hand, then the friction is greater than if the rope is moving through your hand. You initially said that hand-over-hand lowering "does not rely on palm-to-rope friction," and that is wrong. The hand-to-rope friction must be greater if the rope is not sliding through your hands than if it is. This is true even if, due to the higher static coefficient of friction, you don't have to grip is hard.

In reply to:
It seems that your misunderstanding about the difference between kinetic and static coefficients of friction seem to be the issue.

I have no misunderstanding about the difference between kinetic and static coefficients of friction. You seem not to understand that if the rope isn't moving through your hands, then the hand-to-rope friction must be greater than if the rope is moving through your hands.

jt512 wrote:
I doubt that the difference between the kinetic and static coefficients of friction is large enough to make a practical difference.

I take back the statement above for the case where your belay device is not providing sufficient braking force. Then, yes, you should lower (or rappel) without letting rope slip through your hands, and for the reason you state: you want to take advantage of the higher static coefficient of friction.

Jay


(This post was edited by jt512 on Jul 12, 2012, 3:27 PM)


patto


Jul 12, 2012, 2:44 PM
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jt512 wrote:
I take back the statement above for the case where your belay device is not providing sufficient braking force. Then, yes, you should lower (or rappel) without letting rope slip through your hands, and for the reason you state: you want to take advantage of the higher static coefficient of friction.

Well that was the original point, that I stated quite clearly in my first post. Wink


The other stuff: You seem to be thinking that the total friction force exerted by hand+belayer on the rope is less when the rope is moving than if it is static. This is not the case. The total friction is the SAME. Since it is moving the grip force is higher.


jt512


Jul 12, 2012, 3:41 PM
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patto wrote:
jt512 wrote:
I take back the statement above for the case where your belay device is not providing sufficient braking force. Then, yes, you should lower (or rappel) without letting rope slip through your hands, and for the reason you state: you want to take advantage of the higher static coefficient of friction.

Well that was the original point, that I stated quite clearly in my first post. Wink


The other stuff: You seem to be thinking that the total friction force exerted by hand+belayer on the rope is less when the rope is moving than if it is static. This is not the case. The total friction is the SAME. Since it is moving the grip force is higher.

Can you explain why if I'm letting rope slide through my hand, and I want to stop it, I have to increase my grip on the rope, and hence increase hand-to-rope friction; and then if I want to start letting rope slide again, I have to relax my grip, hence reducing the hand-to-rope friction?

Furthermore, if I've been letting rope slide through my hand, and I want to switch to hand-over-hand lowering, I have to first stop the rope from sliding through my hand, which, as noted above, requires me to increase my grip on the rope (and hence increase the hand-to-rope friction), and now to maintain that grip (or nearly so) in order to switch to hand-over-hand lowering.

Is it not clear that if I were to loosen my grip to what it was when letting rope slide through the device that the rope would again slide through the device? There would have to be a very large difference (unrealistically large, I think) between the static and kinetic coefficients of friction for this not to be the case.


patto


Jul 12, 2012, 5:53 PM
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This has now become an argument about physics not climbing. But I'll continue. Angelic

jt512 wrote:
Can you explain why if I'm letting rope slide through my hand, and I want to stop it, I have to increase my grip on the rope, and hence increase hand-to-rope friction
Deceleration. You need to increase the friction to slow the climber. But once the rope has stopped you can reduce your grip.

jt512 wrote:
and then if I want to start letting rope slide again, I have to relax my grip, hence reducing the hand-to-rope friction?
Acceleration. Obviously you need to reduce total friction temporarily to allow the rope to begin moving.

jt512 wrote:
Furthermore, if I've been letting rope slide through my hand, and I want to switch to hand-over-hand lowering, I have to first stop the rope from sliding through my hand, which, as noted above, requires me to increase my grip on the rope (and hence increase the hand-to-rope friction), and now to maintain that grip (or nearly so) in order to switch to hand-over-hand lowering.
No that isn't correct. Once the rope has stopped moving you can significantly loosen your grip before it starts again.

jt512 wrote:
Is it not clear that if I were to loosen my grip to what it was when letting rope slide through the device that the rope would again slide through the device?
That isn't clear and that isn't correct.

jt512 wrote:
There would have to be a very large difference (unrealistically large, I think) between the static and kinetic coefficients of friction for this not to be the case.
Static friction is sometimes twice that of kinetic friction. Sometimes it is only 20% more. I don't know the figure for hand on rope.


Gabel


Aug 7, 2012, 2:00 PM
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Hei bassfreak,

Glad to hear you are okay. I hope you have learned your lessons and will eventually come to terms with your individual mistakes in this scenario.

Cheers,

Gabel

PS: The way I understand "rock cushion" in the report is that you didn't land on a flat surface (thus having to absorb full impact force) but on a tilted surface causing you to slide down the face and absorbing less force over time. But you should be the one telling us about it. :)


DemolitionRed


Aug 31, 2012, 7:46 AM
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I like tubular belay devices but I'm always going to use hand over hand, especially as I never use rope thicker than 9.1mm. Allowing your brake hand to slide the rope heightens your risk of getting rope burn or even getting the flesh between your thumb and forefinger pulled into the tube....OUCH!!
Gloves are not something I ever use because during the climb I need to feel what my lead climber is doing. That's just a personal thing but I have never worn gloves and never had rope burns. (I have however, broken my leg belaying but that's a whole other story!!)

I'm sorry this happened to you and I'm sorry for your belayer too because he must feel like shit.
One of the reasons I solo climbed for as long as I did is, it was only me and the rock. Putting your trust back in another person (no matter how good you know he is) is going to take a little time.
BTW I highly recommend the Petzl Grigri 2. You can use rope as thin as 8.9 mm and although its an expensive bit of kit, it something that would of saved your fall.


rightarmbad


Sep 2, 2012, 6:12 AM
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Re: [DemolitionRed] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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There is no way I can lower safely by letting the rope slide through my hand.

I go hand over hand and generally use two biners for more device friction as well.

There is a word for people that can lower by sliding the rope through their hands, it's called 'light'.


billl7


Sep 2, 2012, 7:35 AM
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Re: [DemolitionRed] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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Although several folks have said it, this thread's static versus dynamic thing overshadows what is likely the main lesson in my view: the rope was too skinny for the device for the circumstances.

Someone new to belaying is less likely to pick up on the above issue. I mean, one can't fall back to the basic specification of the range of rope diameters the device can "handle" which in this case is 7.7mm (yikes!) to 11mm.

DemolitionRed wrote:
Allowing your brake hand to slide the rope heightens your risk of getting rope burn or even getting the flesh between your thumb and forefinger pulled into the tube....OUCH!!

If burning while lowering is a risk with a tubular belay device then it's well past time to look at whether the device/rope/setup is the right one to use. Lots of risk to keep operating that way, ridiculously so if using the same config with intent to catch a lead fall.

Edit: It is illuminating to dwell on that fact that there is no such thing as catching a lead fall using the static method folks are promoting for lowering.

Bill L


(This post was edited by billl7 on Sep 2, 2012, 7:39 AM)


jt512


Sep 2, 2012, 10:49 AM
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Re: [rightarmbad] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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rightarmbad wrote:
There is no way I can lower safely by letting the rope slide through my hand.

If that's really true, then you probably won't be able to catch a hard fall, either. What kind of belay device are are you using, and with what diameter rope?

Jay


patto


Sep 2, 2012, 12:45 PM
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Re: [jt512] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
rightarmbad wrote:
There is no way I can lower safely by letting the rope slide through my hand.

If that's really true, then you probably won't be able to catch a hard fall, either. What kind of belay device are are you using, and with what diameter rope?

Jay
I too am concerned by such a statement.


ObviousTroll


Sep 2, 2012, 3:27 PM
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Re: [rightarmbad] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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rightarmbad wrote:
There is no way I can lower safely by letting the rope slide through my hand.

Do you wear gloves?

Have you ever rappelled?


(This post was edited by ObviousTroll on Sep 2, 2012, 3:28 PM)


quasenada


Jan 17, 2013, 8:28 AM
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Re: [bearbreeder] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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In reply to:
“Use 2 carabiners instead of one with the ATC and there'll be enough device friction to control the lowering even with a half rope.
rob.calm”
Good Stuff never tried but makes sense
In reply to:
""Someone new to belaying is less likely to pick up on the above issue. I mean, one can't fall back to the basic specification of the range of rope diameters the device can "handle" which in this case is 7.7mm (yikes!) to 11mm. (billl7)"
Manual for the ATC states mm between 9-11mm for single rope (In the case of TR since he has only 1 strand on the device).
http://www.blackdiamondequipment.com/uploads/black-diamond/files/M10797_A%20ATC_IS%20WEB.pdf
More I climb more I learn that the crux of most (all?) climbs is to find a reliable partner. I saw in one Messner interview they ask him what is the secret of success? He says “Your partner”.

(This post was edited by quasenada on Jan 17, 2013, 8:29 AM)


billl7


Jan 17, 2013, 10:08 AM
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Re: [quasenada] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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quasenada wrote:
In reply to:
""Someone new to belaying is less likely to pick up on the above issue. I mean, one can't fall back to the basic specification of the range of rope diameters the device can "handle" which in this case is 7.7mm (yikes!) to 11mm. (billl7)"
Manual for the ATC states mm between 9-11mm for single rope (In the case of TR since he has only 1 strand on the device).
http://www.blackdiamondequipment.com/uploads/black-diamond/files/M10797_A%20ATC_IS%20WEB.pdf
I find even double 9's to be 'fast' on an ATC rap let alone double 7.7s. I'm also suspicious of lead belaying on a single 9mm with an ATC.


(This post was edited by billl7 on Jan 17, 2013, 10:10 AM)


bearbreeder


Jan 17, 2013, 7:56 PM
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Re: [billl7] accident ... possibly belayer error [In reply to]
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theres no effing way anyone is belaying me period on an ATC with a 9mm single

Wink


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