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Rope preference questions

Original Post
Ryan Hamilton · · Orem · Joined Aug 2011 · Points: 20

Just curious about rope preferences. This came up in another thread, but thought I'd dedicate a new thread to the topic. 

Bi-pattern ropes are usually at a $30-$40 premium over the same rope in 1 pattern. How many of you prefer the bi-pattern and happily pay that extra cost? Or, does everyone wait for it to get to the discount price and buy it for the $10-15 premium? Who just wants a good rope at the cheapest price even if its a standard single-pattern rope?

What about dry-treated ropes. I have always preferred the handling and ability to limit dirt in my rope so I'm happy to pay the extra $25-ish that it costs. Even if the rope isn't going to get wet. What do you guys think? 

Lets say a rope has good handling characteristics regardless of weight or durability. If light-weight is at 0 on the scale and durability is at 10. The rope is a standard 9.6 - 9.7. As the durability goes up so does the weight (55gm/m - 62gm/m). What number rope do you prefer 0-10?


FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275

I don't climb "hard," but none of this analysis matters to me when I buy a rope. I'm looking at price, length and around 10mm. I've owned many ropes and I don't care about a few grams of weight (maybe I would care if I climbed harder?), sheath thickness, elongation, blah, blah, blah.

Dry ropes and bi-pattern are nice, but not very important to me.

Edit: Losing weight from my person would benefit me more than losing weight on my rope!

Brian · · North Kingstown, RI · Joined Sep 2001 · Points: 655

It depends on what the use is.  For example, If it is going to double for a top-rope then go as cheap as possible.  If you are going to use it ice climbing make sure you get a dry treatment.  I wouldn't get a bi-pattern rope because of the cost and it you ever have to trim it due to a core shot then the center mark is useless anyway.  Many ropes come with the center marked (Mammut) and if not you can use some markers (Sharpie Rub a Dub) to mark the middle yourself.  

Matt Himmelstein · · Orange, California · Joined Jun 2014 · Points: 125

I like lighter ropes for outdoors, slightly more heavy duty for the gym.  My outdoor 70m is a 9.4 and my gym ropes tend to be in the 9.8 range.

Dry treatment is nice, but I don't need it.  I think it helps keep the rope a little cleaner.  I don't do Alpine routes, so I can live without it, but I tend to look for dry treated anyway.

I would prefer a bi-pattern rope, but am not willing to pay a large differential for it.  I have some marking paint so I just tag the middle of my rope and call it good.

Nick Sweeney · · Spokane, WA · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 656

I pay extra for bipattern ropes with dry treatment.  I do a fair bit of alpine climbing, and the bipattern really helps when you're doing 10 rappels to round out a 20-hour day.  

Pavel Burov · · Russia · Joined May 2013 · Points: 50

It depends on climbing style. E.g., in sport climbing rope is yet another expendable material like chalk or climbing shoes in rock climbing or gas and motor oil, or whatever. Thus I purchase the cheapest 9.5-9.8mm 70m dynamic rope. Bipattern is a waste of money because I will cut at least one end after working a couple projects. Dry treatment is a waste of money because sport climbing and rain combine as well as cold milk and pickled vegetables and it is not hard to keep a rope clean when sport climbing. For trad I use half ropes with dry treatment, because trad and rain is like bread and butter. Etc, etc, etc. It depends mostly on climbing style and environment.

Dana Walters 1 · · Spokane, Washington · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 45

I almost never buy a bipattern rope.  I routinely chop my ropes and the bipattern thus becomes fairly useless.  

PatMas · · Tulsa, OK · Joined Jan 2017 · Points: 0

Mammut 9.5 infinity for everything (maybe the exception being ice, but I don't climb ice). Get it on sale for ~$100 for a 60M. Light enough, durable enough, handles well enough. It's a light color so your black middle mark stands out. 

I've had 2 ropes that retailed for over $200, and won't buy either again unless they are cheaper than the infinity 

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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