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Bolting routes


Original Post
Kyle Price · · Youngstown, OH/ Charleston wv · Joined May 2017 · Points: 205

Hey guys I am completely new to bolting and have some access to private property that has some good Nutall sandstone small cliff lines that are 50” I’d like to bolt a few potential routes but would like to get some imput on gear needed to get into bolting?   Drills. Bolts , hangers , anchors the whole nine yards ? Anyone care to shed some light to a newby? I can likely wrap down on a few of these lines

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 523

First of all, you need to find somebody who knows what they're doing that can teach you. This is not the kind of stuff to be self-taught and your mistakes can now not only kill you but also kill other people. They will likely have most if not all of the equipment needed to place bolts. But if you're just looking for an equipment list then here:

You will need a drill, a masonry drill bit that fits your drill (sds+ for power drills, dunno about hand drills), a wrench that fits your bolt (1/2" for 3/8" bolts with a hex head, 9/16" for 3/8" bolts with threads and a nut) preferably a torque wrench until you get a feel for how tight the specified torque feels, a blowtube or blowout pump/bulb (the pumps and bulbs work better but the blowout tube is much cheaper), and preferably a brush that fits the diameter of your hole. Oh and a hammer.

Also, having a dedicated bolt bag with a drawstring closure is very helpful. Also, if you are bolting top-down then you ought to TR the routes first and mark (I'ved used chalk to mark it) places where you want to put a bolt. They should be in good rock, have a good clipping hold that is reachable even for short people, and follow a roughly straight line up the climb with minimal zigzagging going from one bolt to the next. 

Jcastleberry · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 61

At 50” you’re not likely to die from falling.

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 523
Jcastleberry wrote: At 50” you’re not likely to die from falling.

Right, you will just be in so much agony that you wish you were dead. 

Chris Owen · · Big Bear Lake · Joined Jan 2002 · Points: 10,831
Cory Brooks · · Fresno, CA · Joined Feb 2015 · Points: 1,396
eli poss wrote:

Right, you will just be in so much agony that you wish you were dead. 

from 50" (inches?) That's only 4 feet ;)

Jake Jones · · Richmond, VA · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 1,729

Kyle, get ahold of Kenny Parker in Fayetteville.  He's probably the best resource for the region.  I'd recommend glue-ins for that climate, but they have to be done right.

beach · · Portland, ME · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 28

are you bolting in ohio? 

Drew Nevius · · Oklahoma · Joined Jun 2012 · Points: 1,884

To add to what Eli said, get a torque wrench. They’re only $10 at Harbor Freight and they’ve been tested against the $80 Craftsman wrenches found at Lowe’s and are just as good. Get he one meant for 5-80 ft-lbs.

If using glue ins, you need a quality blow pump and a hole brush. Placing glue-ins without properly cleaning the hole is not good.

In general placing mechanical bolts isn’t super complicated, but it needs to be done with the proper tools and with proper care to take all the right steps. Glue-ins are a bit more of a pain.

What Eli said about TRing first to mark proper bolt placements is huge. This will make a big difference with your routes

Maximilian Tagher · · San Francisco, CA · Joined Oct 2017 · Points: 65

Ignore the parts about replacing an old bolt, but this video is a nice intro to placing glue in bolts: https://youtu.be/LmW_FAFazK4

master gumby · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 197

Ground up or bust.

beensandbagged · · smallest state · Joined Oct 2013 · Points: 10
eli poss wrote: First of all, you need to find somebody who knows what they're doing that can teach you. This is not the kind of stuff to be self-taught and your mistakes can now not only kill you but also kill other people. They will likely have most if not all of the equipment needed to place bolts. But if you're just looking for an equipment list then here:

You will need a drill, a masonry drill bit that fits your drill (sds+ for power drills, dunno about hand drills), a wrench that fits your bolt (1/2" for 3/8" bolts with a hex head, 9/16" for 3/8" bolts with threads and a nut) preferably a torque wrench until you get a feel for how tight the specified torque feels, a blowtube or blowout pump/bulb (the pumps and bulbs work better but the blowout tube is much cheaper), and preferably a brush that fits the diameter of your hole. Oh and a hammer.

Also, having a dedicated bolt bag with a drawstring closure is very helpful. Also, if you are bolting top-down then you ought to TR the routes first and mark (I'ved used chalk to mark it) places where you want to put a bolt. They should be in good rock, have a good clipping hold that is reachable even for short people, and follow a roughly straight line up the climb with minimal zigzagging going from one bolt to the next. 

What Eli forgot to add was the bolt should not be anywhere near a crack or pocket suitable for a nut/cam placement

Sandbagger Vance · · Cincinnati, Ohio · Joined May 2016 · Points: 0
Jake Jones wrote: Kyle, get ahold of Kenny Parker in Fayetteville.  He's probably the best resource for the region.  I'd recommend glue-ins for that climate, but they have to be done right.

Second the glue ins . There is also a FB group for a group of climbers near Mad River Gorge Ohio. I would post a request there for assistance.  

m Mobes · · MDI, ME · Joined Mar 2006 · Points: 865

See, now you too can go bolt lines after asking on the internet! Weeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Kyle Price · · Youngstown, OH/ Charleston wv · Joined May 2017 · Points: 205

Thank you for those that give some positive insight.  

Tradiban · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2004 · Points: 11,510
Kyle Price wrote: Hey guys I am completely new to bolting and have some access to private property that has some good Nutall sandstone small cliff lines that are 50” I’d like to bolt a few potential routes but would like to get some imput on gear needed to get into bolting?   Drills. Bolts , hangers , anchors the whole nine yards ? Anyone care to shed some light to a newby? I can likely wrap down on a few of these lines

Yer gonna die........twice!

Kyle Price · · Youngstown, OH/ Charleston wv · Joined May 2017 · Points: 205

Why is it so difficult to ask for information on this subject.  I am just trying to gather information and gain a idea of  where someone would start to do Such. So if I feel It’s a task I am capable of than i can work to gain he knowledge and ensure  it’s done properly. If not than I simply wouldn’t do it.  IIt’s not like I’m going to deface some public property or anything that should attribute to negitive comments.  

Marc801 C · · Sandy, Utah · Joined Feb 2014 · Points: 65
Kyle Price wrote: Why is it so difficult to ask for information on this subject.  I am just trying to gather information and gain a idea of  where someone would start to do Such. So if I feel It’s a task I am capable of than i can work to gain he knowledge and ensure  it’s done properly. If not than I simply wouldn’t do it.  IIt’s not like I’m going to deface some public property or anything that should attribute to negitive comments.  

It's a potentially touchy subject, that's why.

The majority of responses have been helpful and answer your basic questions. You had a typo in your op, saying the cliff is 50 inches instead of 50 feet, so for that you got some deserved teasing.

Take away what's useful; ignore the nonsense.
Scott Fishbein · · Glenwood Springs, Co · Joined Sep 2018 · Points: 5

Let’s see some pics of the wall you’re thinking of bolting!! You can also check out some construction websites like Hilti and Simpson Strongtie. Their procedures on epoxing anchors properly are top notch. 

Max Supertramp · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2008 · Points: 65

battery powered blowers just crack me up.  

if you can't blow it yourself and no one else will..... I guess....

still thanks for sharing.  

Harumpfster Boondoggle · · Between yesterday and today. · Joined Apr 2018 · Points: 113
Kyle Price wrote: Why is it so difficult to ask for information on this subject.  I am just trying to gather information and gain a idea of  where someone would start to do Such. So if I feel It’s a task I am capable of than i can work to gain he knowledge and ensure  it’s done properly. If not than I simply wouldn’t do it.  IIt’s not like I’m going to deface some public property or anything that should attribute to negitive comments.  

Everybody fucks up their first bolting jobs and the scars last a long time. Particularly if using a power drill. Everyone runs a little wild with them at first bolting stuff they never should until they learn restraint. Trust me, over 40 years I've seen everyone do it at one time or another.

If you learn from someone with experience first you will scar the resource less, that's why people are reluctant to give a newbie info. Until you learn from someone with more experience your first attempts are likely gonna be botched and you may endanger yourself.
Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Fixed Hardware: Bolts & Anchors
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