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By Charlie Jonas
From Jackson, Wyoming
Jul 9, 2013
Like most my bad climbing habits, I picked up using the double bowline tie in at a climbing gym about a year ago. Since, it's been my go-to tie in and I've trusted my life it countless times...

However.... as I was stumbling around the interwebz, trying to brush up on some safety knowledge, I came across a resource showing how to correctly tie in on a double bowline. Unfortunately, this is pretty much the opposite of how I tie in with a bowline.

At step 1... Instead of having the loose end come out on top of the coil, my loose end is on the bottom.

At step 2... Instead of coming 'Out of the rabbit hole', I go 'into the rabbit hole'.

This continues and eventually results in a double bowline that is flipped.

Is my knot equivalent? or am I lucky to be alive...

The easier answer is probably just to switch and tie the knot correctly, but I'm so comfortable doing it the way I have been, I prefer not to mix myself up.

BTW: this is not another bowline vs figure-8 thread. I am educated on the disadvantages of the bowline so please leave that out of this discussion.


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By Jon H
From Boulder
Jul 9, 2013
At the matching crux
Would you be so kind as to take and post a picture of the knot you use? That would be most helpful.

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By MTKirk
From Billings, MT
Jul 9, 2013
Me on Supercrack
When I use a bowline tie in I use this one

videojug.com/film/how-to-tie-a...

The back-up knot goes on the tie in loop (which is what I think you are saying). I opted against using a double bowline. I don't think it adds any real world safety, uses more rope, and makes it harder for me to recognize the classic bowline shape. To each their own!

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By Arnold Braker
From golden, co
Jul 9, 2013
The bowline has more variations than I can count. About half the folks I climb with use a bowline, myself included, and none of them look the same.

Photos of what you're doing would help a lot.

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By mattm
From TX
Jul 10, 2013
Grande Grotto
With no pictures I can't tell for certain (so double check and be safe) BUT it just sounds like you're tying it FACING the other way. I do the exact same thing you're describing and have for 15 years. I find tying it this way is slightly easier (rope tends to "sit" where I need it as it's being tied)

The Bowline is perfectly safe (with proper backup knot). I DON'T like the "Yosemite Finish" and simply tie my finishing knot inside the loop. It's cleaner and has less issues IMO.

Here's my sequence:


Start with the double loops
Start with the double loops


Down Through then Up and Over
Down Through then Up and Over


Up through...
Up through...


Finish with half a Double Fish (aka a Barrel Knot ...
Finish with half a Double Fish (aka a Barrel Knot I THINK)

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By Ellenore Zimmerman
Jul 10, 2013
me
H...why?

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By Morgan Patterson
Administrator
Jul 10, 2013
Stoked...
As an another layer of protection with the bowline, you should really feed the end back up through the 'around the tree' and then put in your stopper in above the knot rather then on the loop. It's probably just personal pref but doubling it back only adds more protection and allows you to tie a smaller loop around your harness.

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By Ellenore Zimmerman
Jul 10, 2013
me
....or just tie a figure 8t

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By mattm
From TX
Jul 10, 2013
Grande Grotto
CaptainMo wrote:
As an another layer of protection with the bowline, you should really feed the end back up through the 'around the tree' and then put in your stopper in above the knot rather then on the loop. It's probably just personal pref but doubling it back only adds more protection and allows you to tie a smaller loop around your harness.


I'm not a fan of the Yosemite Finish because I think it adds more chances to screw things up vs a debatable if ANY improvement in security. Per the old ST thread, there doesn't seem to be anything WRONG with a properly tied Yosemite Bowline but, again, it always seems to make it more complicated

ST Thread on Yos Finish Bowline

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By Morgan Patterson
Administrator
Jul 10, 2013
Stoked...
mattm wrote:
I'm not a fan of the Yosemite Finish because I think it adds more chances to screw things up vs a debatable if ANY improvement in security.


Less likelyhood of the knot loosening would be the huge improvement, imo. In the image pictured above if the stopper knot slides up towards the knot the loop would loosen and the knot could invert on itself. Given that the stopper is in the loop tied to your harness you could easily (having climbed a lot) see how the movement of the loop in the harness could push the stopper towards the knot actually forcing the loop looser. So I would actually differ and say there's a huge improvement. If finishing the knot back through that one loop is too difficult for you, you shouldn't be tieing in with that knot, not foregoing tieing it the safest way possible. If we could get someone to tie both and pull test that would be cool... any takers wanna help us settle this one?

EDIT: The link you provided on ST isn't even showing a proper double bowline and the dude isn't even doing the yosemite finish properly so it's irrelevant to this... people in that thread even point out he's not tying it correctly to begin with... why even provide the link?

EDIT 2: I see now.. the yosemite bowline appears to be different from a double bowline with a yos finish. I always use a double with yos finish. I wouldnt use the yos bowline.


dbowline
dbowline

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By mattm
From TX
Jul 10, 2013
Grande Grotto
CaptainMo wrote:
Less likelyhood of the knot loosening would be the huge improvement, imo. In the image pictured above if the stopper knot slides up towards the knot the loop would loosen and the knot could invert on itself. Given that the stopper is in the loop tied to your harness you could easily (having climbed a lot) see how the movement of the loop in the harness could push the stopper towards the knot actually forcing the loop looser. So I would actually differ and say there's a huge improvement. If finishing the knot back through that one loop is too difficult for you, you shouldn't be tieing in with that knot, not foregoing tieing it the safest way possible. If we could get someone to tie both and pull test that would be cool... any takers wanna help us settle this one? EDIT: The link you provided on ST isn't even showing a proper double bowline and the dude isn't even doing the yosemite finish properly so it's irrelevant to this... people in that thread even point out he's not tying it correctly to begin with... why even provide the link?


I tie my finish knot nice and close to the main knot so a non-issue. It was left with a bit more space for clarity.

The Yosemite Finish can be "loosened" by harness movement in a similar way, it just occurs on the other side of the loop. We're probably both just guessing which is more likely.

The full thread contains good discussion on alternate methods of the bowline (including the rethreaded which I use all the time as well).

It's certainly not too difficult to do, it's something I have chosen not to do. If evidence were provided that the Yosemite Finished Doouble Bowline was actually MORE secure than a Double Bowline finished as pictured above then I'd certainly go back to tying it that way.

EDIT2 - Changed Images to avoid more confusion: That dbowline pic is not how I do the DBowline w/ Yos Finish. When I do it, I do it like below

Start
Start




Finish
Finish

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By Morgan Patterson
Administrator
Jul 10, 2013
Stoked...
mattm wrote:
I tie my finish knot nice and close to the main knot so a non-issue. It was left with a bit more space for clarity. The Yosemite Finish can be "loosened" by harness movement in a similar way, it just occurs on the other side of the loop. We're probably both just guessing which is more likely. The full thread contains good discussion on alternate methods of the bowline (including the rethreaded which I use all the time as well). It's certainly not too difficult to do, it's something I have chosen not to do. If evidence were provided that the Yosemite Finished Doouble Bowline was actually MORE secure than a Double Bowline finished as pictured above then I'd certainly go back to tying it that way. EDIT: That dbowline pic is not how I do the DBowline w/ Yos Finish. When I do it, I do it like below (with two loops for the double part)


totally... the above you showed is what I use except i don't go around and then finish, I just finish.. wondering who can do the pull test?

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By mattm
From TX
Jul 10, 2013
Grande Grotto
CaptainMo wrote:
totally... so who can do the pull test? One point of clarification, I don't consider the above to be a double bowline.. a double bowline is when you start with a double bite, the above only has a single bite to start. The rethread makes it 'look' like a double but it isn't... that's a bowline with a yos finish. What I posted was a double bowline with a follow through (not tech a yos finish).


Fixed pictures for clarity.

Jim T did pull testing for the questionable video and posted his results lower in the ST thread. What pulls tests are you wanting? Ring Loaded and Inline for DblBow w/ Yos vs Double Bowline with Finish inside on loop? They'll probably pull the same if I were to guess...

All this playing with it makes me want to try it again (Hell, if rgold uses it it can't be bad...)

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By bearbreeder
Jul 10, 2013
everybody and their doggay has their own personal bowline finish

and everyone and their doggay swears its "safe"

and as the bowline threads show, MPers argue about the different bowlines for pages on ends

;)

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By Rohan de Launey
From South Lake Tahoe
Jul 10, 2013
Luther Spires
Played around a little.. Seems the yos finish to the double bowline makes it easier to untie after cinching/weighting the knot rather than making it any safer.. Easy to thumb the loop similar to releasing a kleimheist.

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By Dana Bartlett
From CT
Jul 10, 2013
MPers argue about the different bowlines for pages on ends

No one is arguing.
Jesus.

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By bearbreeder
Jul 10, 2013
Dana Bartlett wrote:
No one is arguing. Jesus.


read up, people are already starting to "argue" on the finishes ... many other "bowline" threads get into arguments about what is "safe"

just wait on this one


;)

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By The Phoenix
Jul 10, 2013
The Phoenix
mattm wrote:
Fixed pictures for clarity. Jim T did pull testing for the questionable video and posted his results lower in the ST thread. What pulls tests are you wanting? Ring Loaded and Inline for DblBow w/ Yos vs Double Bowline with Finish inside on loop? They'll probably pull the same if I were to guess... All this playing with it makes me want to try it again (Hell, if rgold uses it it can't be bad...)


I think it'd be iteresting to see if there was a diff with the double bowline with the follow through (either way) vs a bowline with no follow though (but a stopper). I know they fail at the bite from watching some other videos so it might be 0 diff... but I question about the possibility of an inversion without a follow though.

Bear - conversation, points, counter points, no arguing (u have to useall caps to argue).

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By Darren Mabe
From Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 10, 2013
wham bam hand jam. Wrapping up the final moves of ...
The Phoenix wrote:
u have to useall caps to argu.

so not tru

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By Mark Pilate
Jul 10, 2013
On the issue of strength, all knots (any std climbing knot)are essentially equal as far as the climber is concerned since even a fall factor 2 is not going to generate enough force to break a decent rope (one that you should be climbing on) at the tie-in point....if the rope is going to break, it'll part on an edge or at the pro, not your harness....so all flavors of bowline or figure 8 for that matter are 6 in one half, 1/2 dozen in the other....so pull tests be damned.

The salient point here is knot stability, the likelihood of coming untied. I use the following finish to my bowline....never comes untied and also keeps figure8-o-philes from second-guessing my knot


definitive bowline finish
definitive bowline finish

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By Healyje
Jul 11, 2013
girl40
What I do...


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By RobC2
Jul 11, 2013
This..
No one should EVER tie in while mountaineering/climbing using a bowline the only safe knot for tying in is a retraced figure eight.

Bowline: Instrument of death.

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By Darren Mabe
From Flagstaff, AZ
Jul 11, 2013
wham bam hand jam. Wrapping up the final moves of ...
Healyje wrote:
What I do...

i like that!


Mark Pilate wrote:
I use the following finish to my bowline....never comes untied and also keeps figure8-o-philes from second-guessing my knot

funny, though you better hope know one tries that... they might not see through the sarcasm.. :/

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By Charlie Jonas
From Jackson, Wyoming
Jul 11, 2013
mattm wrote:
With no pictures I can't tell for certain (so double check and be safe) BUT it just sounds like you're tying it FACING the other way. I do the exact same thing you're describing and have for 15 years. I find tying it this way is slightly easier (rope tends to "sit" where I need it as it's being tied) The Bowline is perfectly safe (with proper backup knot). I DON'T like the "Yosemite Finish" and simply tie my finishing knot inside the loop. It's cleaner and has less issues IMO. Here's my sequence:


Yes this is exactly how I tie it with the exception that I finish back through and tie the back-up half fishermans above the knot.

Looking back I feel a bit silly for even having to ask, but I couldn't find any resources online of people doing it this way. Better to be sure than sorry I guess.

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By Morgan Patterson
Administrator
Jul 11, 2013
Stoked...
RobC2 wrote:
No one should EVER tie in while mountaineering/climbing using a bowline the only safe knot for tying in is a retraced figure eight. Bowline: Instrument of death.


What a horrible article... wrong on so many fronts.

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By Abram Herman
From Golden, CO
Jul 11, 2013
Viking helmet cover, yep.
RobC2 wrote:
No one should EVER tie in while mountaineering/climbing using a bowline the only safe knot for tying in is a retraced figure eight. Bowline: Instrument of death.


From the article: "Long himself attributes the accident to human error. Speaking to Rock and Ice, he admitted he forgot to finish tying his knot."

Yes, it's OBVIOUSLY the knot's fault that it wasn't tied.

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