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Different improvised descenders
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May 7, 2012
I was hoping that everyone could throw in any methods they know for improvising a descent device. I rigged up something today that was a bight of the rappel ropes passed through the middle of two small wire gates and clipped to my harness with two larger carabiners. I backed it up with a prussik. I got down okay.

I just read this article which gives some other options that might be available, and was wondering if there is anything else.
californiamountaineer.net/tom'...
DannyUncanny
From Vancouver
Joined Aug 27, 2010
78 points
Administrator
May 7, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Once we landed we headed to Font to find a place t...
munter hitch LeeAB
From ABQ, NM
Joined Aug 3, 2008
10,774 points
May 7, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: mmmm....tree
carabiner brake-back it up with a pass around your hips if you need the extra friction. Joe Huggins
From Grand Junction
Joined Oct 4, 2001
177 points
May 7, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Estes Park Yart
munter hitch<

+1
I like to keep it simple
Brent Apgar
From Out of the Loop
Joined Oct 20, 2007
176 points
May 8, 2012
I've used a munter hitch once before and would never do it again. It took twice as long to get down and the rope was so tangled, a second rappel would have been very difficult. DannyUncanny
From Vancouver
Joined Aug 27, 2010
78 points
May 8, 2012
DannyUncanny wrote:
I've used a munter hitch once before and would never do it again. It took twice as long to get down and the rope was so tangled, a second rappel would have been very difficult.



You don't usually choose to use a Munter for a rappel, it's something you would use if you don't have any better options.

Yes, I've rapped on a Munter once but only because all I had left was a single locker. I could have done a military-style biner wrap but the Munter has much better friction.
Allen Corneau
From Houston, TX
Joined May 6, 2008
91 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: T Wall
That's good advice from Joe. The carabiner break was a standard rap method back in the day. It's simple, safe, and doesn't hose up your rope. Bob M
From Alpharetta, GA
Joined Oct 6, 2009
50 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: The wife and I road-trippin on the Connie.
I've used the biner-brake method, but the friction was less than confidence inspiring. I rapped second and called for firemans belay. If the situation arises again, i'll probably use the munter because it's easier to rig/check, requires less equipment, and seems more controllable.

Has anyone tried rigging their doubled rappel rope with a biner-block, the same way you would if you were rappeling on a grigri, and rappeled on a single strand munter? Would this help prevent the dreaded rope twists?
Larry S
From Easton, Pennsylvania
Joined May 28, 2010
945 points
May 8, 2012
Allen Corneau wrote:
You don't usually choose to use a Munter for a rappel, it's something you would use if you don't have any better options. Yes, I've rapped on a Munter once but only because all I had left was a single locker. I could have done a military-style biner wrap but the Munter has much better friction.


Given a choice between rappelling on a Munter hitch or some carabiner contraption, I would choose the later.
DannyUncanny
From Vancouver
Joined Aug 27, 2010
78 points
May 8, 2012
you can always use more carabiners in your carabiner break if you need to add friction.
A dulfersitz or an arm-wrap rappel works great for short steps on moderate terrain.

For steep terrain, the carabiner-brake bar rack is probably the best, with the munter in second.
Graham Johnson
Joined Apr 27, 2006
1 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Top of Jah-Man Sister Superior
I find it interesting that people say that the munter makes a mess of the ropes. Learn to use it right and you wont get any twists and it works really well. With that said if you want to brake in the standard hand down by your side position of an ATC, try a super munter, it puts a second wrap on the rope so it untwists the twist that the munter puts in. The Super Munter also gives you a ton more friction...
Dallen
Sunny-D
From SLC, Utah
Joined Aug 2, 2006
431 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Thunderbolt Peak in the Palisades
Assuming you have a team of two clinbing, the first person can go down on the munter and the second on their standard tube device. The second person's device helps to straighten out any kinks.

I used a munter rapping off the first pitch of mental physics because I had left my device on my pack gear loop and not my harness. There was no real rope kink.

The munter provides a lot of friction, it is easy to check, and it's simple to rig. Keep it simple, the last thing you want to do is mess around with a way to rap that you're not used to.

Whatever method you end up using, practice it!

Back on track, you can use a steel rappel ring as a sticht plate but you'll be feeding the rope and going super slow.
randy88fj62
Joined May 28, 2010
87 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: The wife and I road-trippin on the Connie.
Sunny-D wrote:
...Learn to use it right and you wont get any twists and it works really well. With that said if you want to brake in the standard hand down by your side position of an ATC, try a super munter, it puts a second wrap on the rope so it untwists the twist that the munter puts in. The Super Munter also gives you a ton more friction... Dallen


I haven't done any full-length raps a munter, just some very short practice raps, so i can't speak to the twists/tangles or lack thereof- but you say to "rig it right" - what do you mean, how are people rigging it wrong? Are you using double ropes as per a normal rappel, or are you using a single strand? Can the "super-munter" you recommend even be done on a double rope?
Larry S
From Easton, Pennsylvania
Joined May 28, 2010
945 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Top of Montezuma's Tower
Rock Climbing Photo: Body Rappel
Body Rappel
Tom Grummon
From Salt Lake City, UT
Joined Oct 20, 2009
33 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Gear
Tom Grummon wrote:


WWBGD? What Would Bear Grylls Do?
RockinOut
From NY, NY
Joined May 8, 2010
106 points
May 8, 2012
I would avoid doing a biner brake rappel with odd shaped wire gates and instead would stick to standard ovals.

A bunch of different options-

storrick.cnc.net/VerticalDevic...

Also- the munter definitely kinks your rope but you can minimize the twisting by trying to keep both strands in a linear line as much as possible.
Avi Katz
Joined Sep 8, 2010
224 points
May 8, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Hanging out on Royal Arches
Just have your partner lower you with their atc and then they can rap normal. Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
Joined Oct 1, 2009
1,512 points
Jun 17, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: One of my first trad climbs, Ooga Chocka at Crowde...
Tristan B wrote:
Just have your partner lower you with their atc and then they can rap normal.


+1 This would have saved me a lot of hassle in the past.
sanz
From Raleigh, NC
Joined Nov 7, 2011
262 points
Jun 17, 2012
I've used the French crossed carabiners/bicephale method that is illustrated on Gary Storricks' website. It bears close watching, but it is effective and only requires 2 carabiners. Dana Bartlett
From CT
Joined Nov 18, 2003
968 points
Jun 17, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
Tom Grummon wrote:


dulfersitz I believe it is called......basic mountaineering skill; but guess it is not taught much to sport climbers these days/;-(
Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
3,196 points
Jun 17, 2012
The #9 hexcentric is the perfect size to be used as a tube-style device. It also makes for a pretty good hammer, so I always carry it with my nut tool. On the other hand, I think if you've already consumed all of the other carabiners on which you racked everything and attached to slings and so forth, the munther would not be so bad. Carabiner break works really well too. Brian Scoggins
From Laramie, WY
Joined Mar 12, 2002
1,220 points
Jun 17, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Moab, Potash Road and Ice Cream Parlor
If you happen to carry a rap ring on you, they often will do the trick and don't twist the rope like a munter (especially if you have multiple raps in a row).

DBarton
From CENTENNIAL, CO
Joined Oct 19, 2010
107 points
Jun 18, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Toofast
DBarton wrote:
If you happen to carry a rap ring on you, they often will do the trick and don't twist the rope like a munter (especially if you have multiple raps in a row).


Clever! Never heard of that one.
Geir
From Tucson, AZ
Joined Jun 7, 2006
3,360 points
Jun 19, 2012
RockinOut wrote:
WWBGD? What Would Bear Grylls Do?


Get a whole production crew, slap some rocks, and pretend to lead climb.
NorCalNomad
From San Francisco
Joined Oct 6, 2011
127 points
Jun 19, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Profile Photo
Tristan B wrote:
Just have your partner lower you with their atc and then they can rap normal.


If you are going to do this method I'd suggest redirecting them up through a higher point so you have a mechanical advantage and some extra friction. One of the scariest lowers I've ever taken part of was lowering a friend directly off an anchor on an ATC. The most I could manage was a few meters a minute due to my hand getting so hot.
Ty Morrison-Heath
From Bozeman, MT
Joined Mar 22, 2011
2,111 points
Jun 19, 2012
Rock Climbing Photo: Coffee after freezing our asses off near James Pea...
My partner forgot his ATC when we did the 5.6 route on Sharkstooth. So we just passed mine back and forth for lead belaying and the leader belayed the second with a Munter hitch. Worked great. He rapped with one too, obviously. No real problems with rope twisting. Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Joined Jan 1, 2001
1,619 points


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