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2 Piece Alpine Anchors
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Mar 7, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: jugging on the salathe head wall, el cap.
I'm looking for some feedback on a 'how-to' video that I recently helped create (unlisted on YouTube):



This video is aimed at students that are taking courses with SIET (advanced alpine mountaineering courses) and need a brush up on alpine anchors, need to get on the same page as one another in terms of vocab, etc, and need to understand current industry best practices before their course. The vid also serves as a resource for anyone interested in learning more advanced tech skills.

Thanks for the help!
jb
Josh Beckner
Joined Feb 9, 2011
16 points
Mar 7, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Sleeping on top of Washington column after climbin...
Great vid! easy to follow and has good pros and cons for each not! Nice work clint helander
From anchorage, alaska
Joined Dec 3, 2007
636 points
Mar 7, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Stairway To Heaven - all the way to the Pearly Gat...
A couple nits otherwise good video.

1) When discussing solid placements you inadvertently use the word strong instead solid. (~1:40 seconds). You also use strong again at 4:05 seconds. Strong means something different than solid. My anchors are strong but their placement may not be solid. Need to be consistent in the message by always using solid.

2) When discussing distribution and having questionable anchor placements you noted that one would want "accurate equalization." (4:25 seconds). Accuracy is the wrong description. You want to minimize the load differential so the anchors are truly equalized.

The video would be alpine if the demo was with screws, pickets, nuts, cams, anything but two nice bomber bolts. You could done the same video at a summer crag.
Allen Sanderson
From Oootah
Joined Jul 6, 2007
1,194 points
Mar 7, 2016
Allen Sanderson wrote:
3) The magic X with extension limiter knots is NOT redundant. One can cut the cord at the master carabiner and the system fails. 10:30 seconds.


yes it is. I'm sure Allen here just typed before thinking about it fully. One of the strands is twisted, if that blew it would fall onto the untwisted strand and if the untwisted blows it falls into the twisted. That is assuming your knots stay in place.

Nice video, hadn't thought of putting the carabiner into the overhand knot before.
Mike13
Joined Dec 11, 2013
11 points
Mar 7, 2016
But make one cut in the cord, Mike13. Bill Lawry
From New Mexico
Joined Apr 16, 2006
1,718 points
Mar 7, 2016
With limiter knots you can cut any one point in the cord and it is still intact. Well unless youre talking about the actual rope... Mike13
Joined Dec 11, 2013
11 points
Mar 7, 2016
I wonder about this, Josh: "current industry best practices"

When discussing anchors with friends, I have started to talk more about anchors based solely on stance. The context is almost totally rock climbing, usually easy low-angle rock for the second, and of an alpine flavor where time matters.

As being non-redundant under special circumstances can be viewed here as an industry standard, does a stance belay also fit somewhere in the industry standard? Admittedly, this is not the focus of this thread and the vid.
Bill Lawry
From New Mexico
Joined Apr 16, 2006
1,718 points
Mar 7, 2016
You are right, Mike13. I glossed over the part about the limiter knots and the time stamp ... I was thinking of that earlier rig with just a sliding X. Bill Lawry
From New Mexico
Joined Apr 16, 2006
1,718 points
Mar 7, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Stairway To Heaven - all the way to the Pearly Gat...
Mike13 wrote:
yes it is. I'm sure Allen here just typed before thinking about it fully. One of the strands is twisted, if that blew it would fall onto the untwisted strand and if the untwisted blows it falls into the twisted. That is assuming your knots stay in place. Nice video, hadn't thought of putting the carabiner into the overhand knot before.


Yer, correct. My mistake. The biner is over two stands and both would need to be cut. I am too used to thinking about the X sans knots. Edited to correct.
Allen Sanderson
From Oootah
Joined Jul 6, 2007
1,194 points
Mar 7, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Jefferson
Great video. My only criticism would be, why bring another acronym into the world. ERNEST, SERENE, now STRADS? It seems the main reason for the new acronym is to make the "magic X" fit in to it. The "magic X" is great and with the limiter knots it is absolutely redundant, however my point would be, that these acronyms are generally for beginners. Once they graduate from needing acronyms, then teach them more advanced anchors. A Serene anchor on the ice won't kill you so why change it?

With beginners KISS it.
Keep it simple and stupid;)
The rest of us don't need new acronyms to remind us that our equalizing angles shouldn't be too obtuse.

Great teaching aid though
Nick Turtura
Joined Feb 25, 2015
25 points
Mar 8, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Top of Jah-Man Sister Superior
This is a great well thought out video. Having taught University rock and ice courses as well as guiding for years I love seeing good content and presentation. Well done.
Dallen
Sunny-D
From SLC, Utah
Joined Aug 2, 2006
431 points
Mar 8, 2016
Hey Josh,

Edit out the "Okay" from the beginning of each segment. There are at least 6 within the first 6 minutes and continue through to the end. It becomes distracting after the first few and makes the video seem less polished and professional.

Otherwise, nice work!
Jim R
From Vegas!
Joined Apr 24, 2007
7 points
Mar 8, 2016
I was always taught the last method is called a Quad and that an equalette used clove hitches and an "x" in the master point, per JL. Besides that great video, if using for getting peoples terminology on the same page maybe something to clarify. EricF
From San Francisco
Joined May 21, 2012
132 points
Mar 8, 2016
Josh-

The equalette is not the same as a quad. Otherwise it looks fine.
Matt Shove
From Ragged Mountain
Joined May 12, 2007
180 points
Mar 8, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: jugging on the salathe head wall, el cap.
Great, thanks for the input y'all!

To answer some of the questions that have popped up...

Eric and Matt- I considered calling it the quad, as many folks do, but many folks also call it the equalette. I know the newest AMGA SPI Manual calls it the quad, makes sense due to the 4 strands. Not sure if the difference is worth noting/changing...I'll look into it more.

Nick- I hear ya about the acronym overload. However, I'd love to see ERNEST and SERENE disappear forever- they're much better options out there, especially for alpine anchors. I used STRADS not to fit in the magic x, but to prioritize the most important concepts first. ERNEST puts solid and timely last...not so bueno. And both include 'no extension' somewhere. Is that a rule that we want to teach to novices? That you CAN'T have any extension? Distribution of the load is what I think we should go with.

Stance belays- yeah, you can certainly have a stance that's good enough to belay from, but it's more likely that you'll sit down and hip belay or belay of a munter on your waist. And when in doubt, back up your body with a piece or two.

Psyched to hear more before we put it out there...
Josh Beckner
Joined Feb 9, 2011
16 points
Mar 8, 2016
I watched it last night. Good vid. I tend to agree about acronym overload.

Forgot to identify the specific location in the video but when you were tying the sliding X you mention flipping over the "middle" strand. There are only 2 strands, so top/bottom or left/right might be more appropriate?
alpinejason
From Minneapolis
Joined Apr 25, 2010
149 points
Mar 8, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: My buddy Andy and I making the best of the day aft...
Love it! and really like the graphics and animations. Very well made. Here are my thoughts:

- STRADS -> after thinking about it, I do like this. Not sure if I'll start teaching this over SERENE, but I do like it and I like that it is mnemonically similar to TRAD.

- SWAMP - Love this timely anchor for low angle stuff, my only thought (and something I've been thinking about the regular shelf) is that it seems like it would be easy to triaxial load the carabiner as the vector forces are distributed to the carabiner rather than a knot.

As seen in this video

(1:39) Angles as low as 55º can have a significant impact on the breaking strength of pear shaped carabiners


I would love some more input on this. As I understand it, the shelf doesn't seem as acceptable as a secondary master point as I thought it to be. With that said, I also wonder if anyone has actually broken a carabiner clipped into a shelf due to triaxial loading, so the point could be somewhat mute based on practical experience.

- QUAD - I have always heard and have used the term "quad" for this anchor and equalette for variations that use more than 2 pieces and have 2 or 3 strand at the master point. See Climbing Anchors (Long and Gaines)


Would love input on my concerns about the shelf anchor!

- Jeremy (edited for typing errors)
Jeremy Bauman
From Lakewood, CO
Joined Feb 11, 2009
746 points
Mar 11, 2016
Hey that's a polished video and good presentation, I enjoyed it. It might be a thought to also present the Reihenschaltung/Banshee belay style. It definitely has certain advantages, and is widely used here in Europe, especially for anchors in ice.

alpenverein.de/chameleon/publi...

cheers
pizza.eater
Joined Mar 10, 2013
5 points
Mar 11, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: jugging on the salathe head wall, el cap.
Regarding the bolts, we chose to use bolts so folks that are learning this stuff won't get distracted by the pieces. I mention pieces of varying quality (screws, pickets, etc) to address the best use of each type of anchor. If we showed each anchor on each type of piece that it could be used for, the vid would be way too long.

Jeremy, as far as the SWAMP creating a triaxial load on a carabiner, it all depends on how close the knot is to the carabiner. If the knot is right under the 'biner, it won't create any triaxial load. But the further you move the knot up, the more it will start to happen. To what degree, I don't know- I don't have a differential formula to figure that out with.

My general rule is to keep the knot an inch or two from the 'biner. The tests I've seen done at Petzl show that a little bit of triaxial load (around 15-25 degrees) won't make any real difference in your standard climbing scenario. Professional rescue scenarios are where you need to worry about this stuff the most.

Thanks y'all!
Josh Beckner
Joined Feb 9, 2011
16 points
Mar 11, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Castle Rock
pizza.eater wrote:
Hey that's a polished video and good presentation, I enjoyed it. It might be a thought to also present the Reihenschaltung/Banshee belay style. It definitely has certain advantages, and is widely used here in Europe, especially for anchors in ice. alpenverein.de/chameleon/publi... cheers


This document looks great. I wish it was in English!
tomW
Joined May 11, 2011
13 points
Mar 11, 2016
I didn't think an overhand was acceptable in Dyneema ? djh860
Joined Dec 28, 2014
105 points
Mar 11, 2016
^^^^^^^^
dmmclimbing.com/knowledge/slin...

"informed choice" etcetera
yukonjack
Joined Mar 20, 2015
15 points
Mar 11, 2016
Nice video Josh. And very helpful.

1. as the angle increases between the pieces does the force increase exponentially? Doesn't it increase as sin(theta)?
2. if instead of tying an overhand as the powerpoint you tie and alpine butterfly the whole undoing-thing-after-loading goes away. This is slightly harder with gloves one, but no harder when without.
David Coley
From UK
Joined Oct 26, 2013
70 points
Mar 11, 2016
...and

I wasn't sure if the bolts were used just as a demo, but if you are talking bolts, I would have included a banshee with just the rope. Or possibly an overhand and a clove with just the rope.

But anyhow something with just the rope would have been good as you might well have run out of slings.
David Coley
From UK
Joined Oct 26, 2013
70 points
Mar 11, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: el cajon
David Coley wrote:
2. if instead of tying an overhand as the powerpoint you tie and alpine butterfly the whole undoing-thing-after-loading goes away. This is slightly harder with gloves one, but no harder when without.


David, do you have any pictures of this tied with two strands? I've never seen an alpine butterfly powerpoint and it has peaked my interest.
James T
Joined Jul 1, 2015
45 points
Mar 12, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Jefferson
James T wrote:
David, do you have any pictures of this tied with two strands? I've never seen an alpine butterfly powerpoint and it has peaked my interest.


I'd like to see it as well
Nick Turtura
Joined Feb 25, 2015
25 points


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