Mammut Smart in reverso mode?


Original Post
Adam Byra · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2014 · Points: 5
Top belay mode

Has anyone experience top belaying with a smart? Seems like it would work. I like the zero friction of the smart alpine, but don't appreciate how bulky it is.
Jim Titt · · Germany · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 490
Adam Byra wrote: Has anyone experience top belaying with a smart? Seems like it would work. I like the zero friction of the smart alpine, but don't appreciate how bulky it is.
What can I say? Either get some professional instruction or at a minimum read the instructions.
THAT IS NOT GUIDE MODE:
This is:-

Smart Alpine guide mode

Nothing on the standard Smart is designed, intended or tested for strength used as you intend.
Adam Byra · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2014 · Points: 5

That's a different device. I'm asking if anyone tried the smart (not alpine) in that configuration.

Jim Titt · · Germany · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 490
Adam Byra wrote:That's a different device. I'm asking if anyone tried the smart (not alpine) in that configuration.
I know.
CornCob · · Sandy, UT · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 20
Adam Byra wrote:That's a different device. I'm asking if anyone tried the smart (not alpine) in that configuration.
I'm doubting anyone has ever used it like that because, as stated above, it was not designed or intended to be used like that. That's like trying to use a standard ATC in guide mode instead of using an ATC Guide, you just don't do it.
Nick Drake · · Newcastle, WA · Joined Jan 2015 · Points: 483

Yer gunna die.

If your partner lives after you drop them in "guide mode".

aikibujin · · Castle Rock, CO · Joined Oct 2014 · Points: 290
Adam Byra wrote:I like the zero friction of the smart alpine, but don't appreciate how bulky it is.
What you propose MAY work, but really?! You think the smart alpine is really that much bulkier than the regular smart to worth this experiment?
Gavin W · · Surrey, BC · Joined Feb 2015 · Points: 183
aikibujin wrote: What you propose MAY work, but really?! You think the smart alpine is really that much bulkier than the regular alpine to worth this experiment?
The Smart Alpine is a little over twice the size of the regular Smart (which the OP posted about).

To the OP, I wouldn't do it because the forces from the belay will be on a different axis that the device isn't designed to hold. Plus, you can see on the Alpine Smart that there are riveted spacers that distribute the forces and add strength on either side of the hanging point. Not so on the regular Smart, so I suspect that a fall would lead to the sides of the device bending inwards and pinching the rope.

If you're that concerned about the size of the Alpine Smart but insist on using the Smart, then extend yourself below the anchor and belay off of your harness, up through the anchor, and down to your second, or just belay directly off of your harness. I only belay in guide mode on very steep terrain anyways, for anything moderate it's unnecessary and often makes your belay system more complicated than it needs to be.
Russ Keane · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 140

OP: Try it out in a controlled environment maybe? And/ Or just read what the manufacturer says.

Pavel Burov · · Russia · Joined May 2013 · Points: 50
Adam Byra wrote: Has anyone experience top belaying with a smart? Seems like it would work. I like the zero friction of the smart alpine, but don't appreciate how bulky it is.
Why?

I can understand why people want to use GiGi plate or similar device (ATC Guide, Micro/Mega Jul, etc) to compact two-stranded belays for the price of "when shit happened it would be no fun to rig all that technical ledges to redirect rope strand(s) to something suitable for lowering". But with one rope.

Why? Guide mode belay plate belays create more problems than solve. Just review the following lists:

Belay plate in guide mode:
1. Tie a Munter Mule #1. Now you are hands free.
2. Make a technical ledge below the plate. Tie a Munter Mule #2.
2. Clip an HMS and form a clove hitch with a rope strand above the plate.
3. Make a Munter Mule #3 above the clove hitch.
4. Make a friction hitch below the clove hitch.
5. Undo the mule #1 and lower down your partner to shift theirs weight to the technical ledge.
6. Undo the mule #2, and lower down your partner to shift theirs weight to the clove hitch.
7. Undo the technical ledge. Clean the binner and the cordalette.
8. Safety warning! Starting from here have you braking hand on the rope strand above the clove hitch all the time!
9. Undo the mule #3 and lower down your partner to the ground.
10. Ensure your partner is safe. Now you are finally hands free.

Clove hitch:
1. Tie a Munter Mule. Now you are hands free.
2. Make a friction hitch below the clove hitch.
3. Undo the mule and lower down your partner to the ground.
4. Ensure they is safe.

Why in the World to pay that high price for the semi-mythical comfort?

If climbing close to or even beyond your limits so falling is more or less expected just bring a GriGri, or Cinch, or whatever suitable for lowering. The same "hands free - add friction hitch backup - lower down" sequence as with clove hitch belay.
Matt Stroebel · · Lakewood, OH · Joined Apr 2011 · Points: 115

1. Other people have covered this pretty pretty well, the portion of the Smart where the carabiner attaches to the anchor is not made to hold the whole weight of the belay.

2. The below picture should show you why your way probably won't work anyways. By changing the point where the device connects to the anchor, you rotate the device. Rotating the device will likely result in the rope not compressing itself, which is how guide mode works.

It's gonna rotate

3. Don't take your engineering advice from people on the internet. Consider talking to the guys who designed the Smart at Mammut mammut.ch/CA/en_CA/contact.

Matt Himmelstein · · Orange, California · Joined Jun 2014 · Points: 115

I would not do it, nor would I let anyone belaying me use it in this manner. I use both a Smart and an Alpine Smart. I don't like the Alpine in the gym because it is bigger, bulkier in the hand, and when belaying a single rope, it twists just a bit. When I am outdoors, especially on multipitch, I use it because it is way more versatile.

You are doing a couple of things with this configuration that was not contemplated in the design.
1) you are limiting how much the device can rotate and the axis of rotation, so you don't get the same constriction and locking when loaded.
2) you are putting stress on a part of the device not meant to be stressed. When used correctly and loaded, the bottom of the slot is not taking the load of the fall/climber, the biner is taking it, and the device is only compressing the rope on itself. In your configuration, the load is all on the device, and it was not designed to take the load on this part. The Alpine has a different design, with more structural strength with the red plate that takes the load.
3) you are putting extra gear in the way of the path of the rope, and it will probably not feed well when lowering. You rotate the device up to unload it, and in this configuration you have created a constriction at the bottom, where the rope should be running free.

All that said, I would not be surprised if they tested it in this configuration and made sure it was strong enough not to fail, just in case someone used it exactly the way you describe. But you can't make something idiot proof.
Adam Byra · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2014 · Points: 5

My friends and I tried it off a tree, seems to cinch properly when pulled. I think if anyone put a lot of weight on it it would bend the device pretty bad. I wonder if they thought of making both devices with a guide mode hole.

aikibujin · · Castle Rock, CO · Joined Oct 2014 · Points: 290
Gavin W wrote: The Smart Alpine is a little over twice the size of the regular Smart (which the OP posted about).
I meant to say "regular smart" in my post (edited now). I only have the Smart Alpine, so I didn't realize the regular Smart is only for a single rope. I've always thought the regular Smart is the Alpine Smart without the hole for the guide mode (like the regular ATC vs. the ATC Guide), but now I realize that's wrong.
Rob Warden...Space Lizard · · Between Zion, Vegas, LA, an... · Joined Dec 2011 · Points: 115

Incidently to this conversation. When i retired my smart when the rope had worn in it out. I wanted to see what whay kind if strenght you got from clipping the belay plate to they anchor.

An overheated transmission on a 4x4 mitzubishi Fuzo (diesel box truck) later

The smart was fine. The load cell said 1800kgs

Acmesalute76 · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 55

This is why people have sketchy experiences meeting partners on MP. Then you have Pavel, belaying off a clove hitch. The best part is you won't even know you are free soloing until you get to the top!

I can probably clip some random biners together that will "autoblock" but I'm not going to.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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