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Apr 2, 2012
I've heard of some people cleaning off holds on their projects with rubbing alcohol. Never heard about this until I moved to the east coast. I guess the idea is to clean off any sweat/dirt/grime that might accumulate on the holds. Seems kind of weird to me, but it could be affective. My conscience tells me its evil, but I don't really have a good reason for believing this.

What are your thoughts/opinions about this?
----
Joined Oct 23, 2008
892 points
Apr 2, 2012
Downgrades it 2 V- grades! G McG
From Victoria, BC
Joined Dec 6, 2010
1 points
Apr 2, 2012
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
I'm guessing this is directed to boulderers who would be cleaning off their holds? A brush dipped in alcohol could do a nice cleanup I suppose. Evaporates away quickly.. Just don't use organic cleaning agent like acetone as it can damage the rock surface and is harmful to the climber in many ways. Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,090 points
Apr 2, 2012
...
"...Just don't use organic cleaning agent like acetone as it can damage the rock surface and is harmful to the climber in many ways."




sarcasm?
Nick Barczak
Joined Oct 9, 2008
113 points
Apr 2, 2012
Indy pass
Woodchuck ATC wrote:
I'm guessing this is directed to boulderers who would be cleaning off their holds? A brush dipped in alcohol could do a nice cleanup I suppose. Evaporates away quickly.. Just don't use organic cleaning agent like acetone as it can damage the rock surface and is harmful to the climber in many ways.


So you mean like nail polish remover?
Jason N.
From Grand Junction
Joined Mar 18, 2011
23 points
Apr 2, 2012
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
Jason N. wrote:
So you mean like nail polish remover?

Well it is an ingredient of nail polish, but I was thinking more of 100% straight chemical form. I use it to clean the rubber on my shoes, but try my best to keep it off my skin. Nasty stuff.
Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,090 points
Apr 2, 2012
Indy pass
Woodchuck ATC wrote:
Well it is an ingredient of nail polish, but I was thinking more of 100% straight chemical form. I use it to clean the rubber on my shoes, but try my best to keep it off my skin. Nasty stuff.


I think this might be inaccurate. I used acetone all the time in chem labs in college, all it does is give you this weird cooling sensation and maybe dries out your skin a bit. Sure, we typically have gloves on for chem lab anyways, but it isn't something we'd make sure we have gloves on for when handling it. Looking at the "fire diamond" the biggest danger of it is flammability, which is almost moot because how fast it evaporates.

FYI, rubbing alcohol would also be considered an organic solvent.
Jason N.
From Grand Junction
Joined Mar 18, 2011
23 points
Apr 2, 2012
Myself placing a a blue/yellow offset MC to protec...
i've seen many a sink fire started from residual acetone fumes from cleaning of glassware...both are not really harmful in any small amounts and would work to help dissolve various other chemicals such as those composing sweat, oil, etc...


Jason N. wrote:
I think this might be inaccurate. I used acetone all the time in chem labs in college, all it does is give you this weird cooling sensation and maybe dries out your skin a bit. Sure, we typically have gloves on for chem lab anyways, but it isn't something we'd make sure we have gloves on for when handling it. Looking at the "fire diamond" the biggest danger of it is flammability, which is almost moot because how fast it evaporates. FYI, rubbing alcohol would also be considered an organic solvent.
rock_fencer
From Columbia, SC
Joined Dec 20, 2009
253 points
Apr 2, 2012
...
I'm a professional organic chemist by trade, having completed my PhD last summer. So I have lots of experience with acetone. Really not harmful, unless you drink it. As for ethanol on the rock. Probably would in fact do a decent job of scrubbing off oils left by your skin. Actually, the 'liquid chalk' stuff that comes in a squeeze tube is mostly just a suspension of chalk dust in ethanol.

Trust me, I'm a doctor. ;-)

and just remember....beakers of bubbling blue solutions = SCIENCE!!
Nick Barczak
Joined Oct 9, 2008
113 points
Apr 2, 2012
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
I just recall that acetone is carcenogenic after long exposures, but then again, what isn't these days. Think most non organic chemist types also won't be finding a liter of it easily either. Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,090 points
Apr 2, 2012
smoke break, pitch 5 or 6 (or 7??) of Dark Shadows
Acetone by the liter can be found in any paint section of a hardware store.

It's also frequently used on animals skin in dermal tests... I believe because it can dissolve the lipids and help carry the chemical that's being tested into the skin.
Eric Krantz
From Black Hills
Joined Feb 21, 2004
469 points
Apr 3, 2012
mmmm....tree
Isopropanol is a great low toxicity solvent-cheap and fast evaporating. Bottom line-not evil, but maybe a little anal. Joe Huggins
From Grand Junction
Joined Oct 4, 2001
177 points
Apr 3, 2012
if you cant send your project without alcohol, maybe its time to take a long hard look at your life.... nick frazee
From bozeman, MT
Joined Jan 25, 2011
11 points
Administrator
Apr 3, 2012
El Chorro
I used to huff my siters nail polish remover... Ryan Williams
From London (sort of)
Joined May 10, 2009
1,468 points
Apr 3, 2012
Me again!
Fred Gomez wrote:
I've heard of some people cleaning off holds on their projects with rubbing alcohol. What are your thoughts/opinions about this?



Bad idea. The alcohol makes the chalk penetrate the pores of the rock deeper than water or how they would penetrate without a solvent. It makes a slugy paste that really sinks in to the texture of the rock. The end result is slicker holds in the long run. I have seen this happen to several problems in Hueco.
J Q
Joined Mar 11, 2012
48 points
Apr 3, 2012
Stabby
Trisodium Phosphate.
Mix it up in a spray bottle.
Mike Lane
From Centennial, CO
Joined Jan 21, 2006
839 points
Apr 3, 2012
Mint jullop
Water. I have cleaned many holds with it. It does have side effects, cools skin, hydrates if you swallow, local plants will absorb it and grow! thomas ellis
From abq
Joined Oct 12, 2009
1,652 points
Apr 3, 2012
thomas ellis wrote:
Water.


+1... all we need is a bunch of people thinking that pouring various solvents onto holds is the only thing holding them back...
bdboulder
From Eldorado
Joined Oct 11, 2006
127 points
Apr 3, 2012
What about the rubber that is apparent on any foot placements on any popular routes/problems anywhere in the world?

How do we get rid of that easily without impacting local wildlife or vegetation or smelly hippies or the rocks themselves?
S.Stelli
From Colorado Springs, CO
Joined Dec 21, 2009
171 points
Apr 3, 2012
Mint jullop
You stand on it. thomas ellis
From abq
Joined Oct 12, 2009
1,652 points
Apr 3, 2012
thomas ellis wrote:
You stand on it.


stand on the vegetation or the hippies? =)
S.Stelli
From Colorado Springs, CO
Joined Dec 21, 2009
171 points
Apr 3, 2012
Indy pass
BDergay wrote:
+1... all we need is a bunch of people thinking that pouring various solvents onto holds is the only thing holding them back...


Water is a solvent, arguably one of the best known to man.

Sorry, chem nerding out.
Jason N.
From Grand Junction
Joined Mar 18, 2011
23 points


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