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Marking routes - tape v. hold color
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Poll: Marking routes - tape v. hold color
Tape 13 / 65%
Hold Color 7 / 35%
20 total votes
 

olderic


Jan 10, 2013, 8:37 AM
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Marking routes - tape v. hold color
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What's your preference?


raingod


Jan 10, 2013, 9:39 AM
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Re: [olderic] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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Tape, I have some colour blindness and as holds get coated with chalk and rubber I find it harder and harder to see what colour they might have once been.


shotwell


Jan 10, 2013, 9:44 AM
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Re: [olderic] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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olderic wrote:
What's your preference?

For most gyms hold color sucks. There typically isn't enough variety in a given color to get consistent creativity in setting. The constraint becomes even worse when gyms are stripped in sections. You wind up with hold sets that never really get mixed up. Tapes negatives just aren't as extreme to me.

HRT is now making 'white holds' that have spots to put colored dots on. They seem like a pretty nice compromise, especially as you can still share holds between routes.

That being said, I really like competition setting to be monochromatic. It really is more aesthetically pleasing, especially on an otherwise blank wall.


rsd212


Jan 10, 2013, 11:35 AM
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Re: [shotwell] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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Pros of using color:
- Never worry about missing tape
- Routes more visually appealing

Pros of tape:
- Can use the right hold for the route, not just throw up one of the right color
- Higher route density by using the same hold on multiple routes
- Some holds dont have a well defined color. Is it yellow? orange? brown?
- Easy to slap up new routes and variations without resetting an entire wall

I've always found that hold color wins for easy top-rope walls, and is good for the birthday party crowd, but for serious training you want the route density that tape can give you, even if it does make the wall look like Jackson Pollock threw up on some plywood.


Partner cracklover


Jan 10, 2013, 12:48 PM
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Re: [shotwell] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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shotwell wrote:
olderic wrote:
What's your preference?

For most gyms hold color sucks. There typically isn't enough variety in a given color to get consistent creativity in setting. The constraint becomes even worse when gyms are stripped in sections. You wind up with hold sets that never really get mixed up. Tapes negatives just aren't as extreme to me.

This ^^^

Eric, you ever climbed at Carabiners? Nuff said.

GO


olderic


Jan 11, 2013, 8:16 AM
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Re: [cracklover] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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cracklover wrote:
[
This ^^^

Eric, you ever climbed at Carabiners? Nuff said.

GO

Carabiners has bigger issues then that.... although I haven't been there in 5+ years.

Personally I abhor using hold colors to mark the route - For whatever reason I can distinguish differences in tape color much more easily - it's too much effort for me to figure out if the next potential hold is red or pink or orange. Even the neon greens and yellow look about the same to me. old and blind. But more and more of the local gyms are going the hold color route. Claiming time and $$$ savings. i'm looking for ammunition to make a counter argument.

As an aside - the worst of all possible worlds was at a gym in England where the routes were typically set with multiple options - red only = 5.10, yellow only = 5.9, red + yellow = 5.8. Etc. Imagine having to set routes like that. Oh and that wasn't the cleanest gym to start with - basically all holds were black....


viciado


Jan 11, 2013, 9:20 AM
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Re: [olderic] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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Where visual aesthetics is the objective, use colored holds. Aesthetics aside, tape is just faster, more adaptable and allows for a greater variety of routes using the same density of holds than being stuck with same color holds.

I can't agree with the argument that anyone can save time and money by sticking with same color holds. One needs many buckets full of colored holds in order to even approach the variety you can get by a well populated, taped wall. Additionally, a taped route can be changed n a matter of seconds just by pulling or moving the tape.


petsfed


Jan 11, 2013, 10:42 AM
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Re: [olderic] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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Outside of the infuriating tendency to tape the route in such a way as to render marking superfluous (read "1 inch long strip straight down from a critical foothold on a route that requires your hips stay close to the wall at all times"), I definitely prefer taping. As a setter, it gives me WAAAY more freedom to set a good route, not just a good looking route.


mikeclimbingdude


Jan 11, 2013, 11:35 AM
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Registered: Jan 21, 2002
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Re: [olderic] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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i have been setting for 20 years, and taped routes is the way to go, with tape you can use any hold make a better route, the gym i set at now"pg" sets routes with colored holds and makes it hard because we use only 6 colors,yellow,green,black,blue,orange, and pink, and the thing i hear from the customers most is that it's hard to make out black from blue when they are next to each other as well as pink and orange, and if one is colored blind that makes route finding hard as well, but if you are a route setter, putting up routes and stripping routes sure goes much faster with colored holds, happy climbing mike a. your favorite route setter :-)


om13


Jan 11, 2013, 1:06 PM
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Re: [mikeclimbingdude] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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I voted for tape, but i think question needs some classification. For the gyms that are available to me, tape would be better. However, there are situations in which holds color works well. I've seen it work in the gyms that has close to unlimited wall space, are very tall and most of the routes are endurance-based rather than crux/tricky_footwork (meaning you don't care about the shape of every individual hold that much), and finally have large amount of holds available.
For example, here is the gym in Munich:
http://kbmuenchen.de/virtueller-rundgang/
or less techy:
http://kbmuenchen.de/gallerie/?album=3&gallery=1
This gym has 7 areas for rope climbing (each is close to size of our gyms) and couple more for bouldering.
Take a look at the walls - there are not that many colors and routes don't wonder, 2 routes per station is average. All holds are spanking clean. So... if we can keep our gyms to such standards - sure, lets do it. But my worry we will end up with 40 routes at each gym and only 3-4 of them for each grade. It just does not work for small and underfunded facilities we have access too...


USnavy


Jan 18, 2013, 2:06 PM
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Re: [shotwell] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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shotwell wrote:
olderic wrote:
What's your preference?

For most gyms hold color sucks. There typically isn't enough variety in a given color to get consistent creativity in setting.
Most of the best gyms in the United States use hold color: Stone Summit, Momentum, Stone Gardens, Planet Granite. Tape is old, disorganized and quickly becoming a thing of the past. Hold color is far superior in that it makes it far easier to identify relevant holds quicker. One of the largest quark I have with gym climbing is that, with some gyms, there is so much damn tape everywhere that I have to stop in between every move to try to pick out where the hell the next hold is. Colored holds completely eliminates that problem. The ONLY gym in the United States that I have been to that seems to be able to use tape well is Movement. They generally create their routes in a straight line and they never use more than one piece of tape on a single hold. This whole "four pieces of tape on one hold" crap most gyms do is retarded and amateur.


(This post was edited by USnavy on Jan 18, 2013, 2:09 PM)


shockabuku


Jan 18, 2013, 6:59 PM
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Re: [olderic] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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I find it harder to distinguish variations in hold color and determine whether the hold is, for instance, black, dark green, or brown than to distinguish between tape colors. Yeah, tape falls off occassionally but mostly on the bouldering wall or low on routes which is pretty easy to figure out. I hate it when I'm 20 feet up and have to spend 10 seconds trying to figure out which color the hold is. Especially when the lighting is bad which seems to be common in a lot of smaller gyms.


petsfed


Jan 18, 2013, 7:58 PM
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Re: [USnavy] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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USnavy wrote:
One of the largest quark I have with gym climbing is that, with some gyms, there is so much damn tape everywhere that I have to stop in between every move to try to pick out where the hell the next hold is.

"Quirk". A quark is a subatomic particle. The largest quark is called the top quark. From usage, I think the word you wanted was "problem", but who can say?

USnavy wrote:
The ONLY gym in the United States that I have been to that seems to be able to use tape well is Movement. They generally create their routes in a straight line and they never use more than one piece of tape on a single hold. This whole "four pieces of tape on one hold" crap most gyms do is retarded and amateur.

So, the solution that I've advocated for years, and indeed is the primary guideline at all of the gyms I've worked at, is what is necessary for making taping worthwhile. Got it.

Things that make taping more effective:
1) only one route/problem can use any given hold, outside of starting feet
2) tape at 45 degrees off vertical, and preferably according to an established convention (e.g. down and to the left, or always away from the climber's centerline, etc)
3) perform weekly maintenance on routes to insure that the tape does not become an eyesore and/or ceases to effectively mark the route

Taping is VASTLY superior to colored holds for any gyms that don't have the hold storage and acquisition budget that Movement has, which is most of them. Colored holds may work better all else being equal, but few gyms start with a tens of millions initial investment to build their facility ground up.


USnavy


Feb 1, 2013, 11:11 PM
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Re: [petsfed] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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petsfed wrote:


1) only one route/problem can use any given hold, outside of starting feet
If gyms actually follow that advice, then I agree, tape works well. The problem is they dont... Maybe they do at the gym you work at. But I have been to a number of gyms stretching from California to Maryland, and a solid 50% or more do not follow this rule. Combined with crappy setting makes for a bad experience.


meanandugly


Feb 2, 2013, 5:35 AM
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Re: [olderic] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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Tape allows one hold to be uses on multiple problems or routes.


petsfed


Feb 2, 2013, 9:21 AM
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Re: [USnavy] Marking routes - tape v. hold color [In reply to]
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Well, maybe the two gyms I've worked at (I sadly don't anymore, relocation does that) were flukes, but the short version is that they had a maximum number of shared holds between problems/routes, and a clear policy for how to tape if that came up.

One gym required that all tape be at 45 degrees off the horizontal, going down and to the left from the holds. If another route needed that hold, then its tape was down and to the right. No more than 2 routes could share the same hold.

The other required the tape to be at 45 degrees off the vertical, down, but the setter could determine which direction would make the tape last longer. If the hold was meant to be a starting foothold, or was in the lowest 18 inches of the wall, the tape should be a vertical strip going straight down.

As gyms get more professional (which was the reasoning at both that I worked at), these policies spring up, and they are good policies. As I said, marking routes by hold color requires a MASSIVE hold and hold-storage budget, and neither place could afford that, despite one of them being the primary climbing gym of the Denver area.


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