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Apr 26, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Sitting on Rock
Hey everyone. If your taking a couple of kids top roping would it be beneficial to tie into two locking beaners and hook those to their belay loops to get them more climbs quicker without having to retire everyone every time they climb? I can't see why this wouldn't be ok.

Later!
keithconn
From LI, NY
Joined Jan 1, 2015
35 points
Apr 26, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Photo from prairie wall area of my dad belaying
Why the rush? I always tie in through both my harness points, the belay loop is for just what the name implies.... Belaying.

From a point of safety and as a fun learning opportunity teach them the figure 8 follow through and then help them tie it every time they climb.

Its great that you are exposing kids to climbing. Keep it safe and have a great time!
travis lang
From alexandria,mn
Joined Aug 22, 2013
573 points
Apr 26, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Miniholland
I agree. Kids love to learn stuff like that. Give them a lesson and in no time they'll be tied in and waiting on you to squeeze the rope in your atc. JoeGaribay
From Ventura, Ca
Joined Apr 26, 2014
66 points
Apr 26, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: This is a novel auto blocking belay device.  I thi...
It took only a few times before my kids could tie a figure 8, run it through their hard points and follow it back through. JoeGaribay is correct, they love it. Rick Blair
From Denver
Joined Oct 16, 2007
376 points
Apr 26, 2016
keithconn wrote:
...locking beaners...

Biners.
Beaners is a derogatory term for certain ethnic groups.
Marc801
From Sandy, Utah
Joined Feb 25, 2014
64 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Me on some janky piece of shit in Seigankyo
I don't disagree about teaching them the knot, but this is how toprope are done at a gym I go to. I can't see how it could be an issue. Tony Monbetsu
Joined Jan 14, 2014
422 points
Apr 27, 2016
You have to keep an eye on the biners because they can potentially be cross loaded when giving and taking slack out of the system or if the kids start running up the wall and you're playing catch-up with the belay. i know gyms use this system but It happens a lot easier than you think. mediocre
Joined Jul 18, 2013
0 points
Apr 27, 2016
I have 4 sons, and we all started climbing when they were 12,12,8, and 6. There are a couple gyms we've gone to that use biners, but it seems this is just to get the max number of people through in the shortest time. We always tie in each time when outside, no matter what, and even with the youngest, it only took a couple times before they were doing it themselves. Only takes about 30 seconds more than a biner, gives them a sense of accomplishment, teaches necessary skill, gives a natural break to check the rope, their harness, give advice, etc... I see no reason not to. DrugDoc
From Dix, IL
Joined Jul 10, 2013
0 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Running it out on easy slab. "Now where is th...
Learning the knots is great and never a bad thing. However, kids age, attentiveness etc may make tying a knot over and over again both annoying and perhaps it even adds a bit more risk of mistakes (albeit slight if you yourself are attentive).

That said, using a locker is fine. The recommended ones are ones with both an anti rotation feature AND multiple locking features on the gate. DMM Belay Master is my favorite but there others that are similar.
mattm
From TX
Joined Jun 2, 2006
1,401 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: This is a novel auto blocking belay device.  I thi...
mattm wrote:
Learning the knots is great and never a bad thing. However, kids age, attentiveness etc may make tying a knot over and over again both annoying and perhaps it even adds a bit more risk of mistakes (albeit slight if you yourself are attentive).


Having taught my kids and others kids as young as 4 how to tie in, I can tell you this has not been a problem in the least for me. Parents should check the knot which is what climbing partners should be doing for each other anyway.

Part of the safety system in climbing is almost ritual, I say start them off with that before anything else.
Rick Blair
From Denver
Joined Oct 16, 2007
376 points
Apr 27, 2016
Kids will learn those knots is no time. Keep in mind - considering their attention span, you MUST check their knots.

If you decide to use locker for attaching the rope two opposed lockers would keep them safer
amarius
Joined Feb 23, 2012
23 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Miniholland
Side note- I've belayed kids before. Typically they're on a slab and depending on the child, they may not always use their feet as much as they should. They tend to belly out and slither around. I don't know if this matters much for tying in but it could. On one hand, if they're tied in with a knot, then they may be roughing up the end of the rope. On the other, if it's a locker, then they're roughing that up and I see that it could be possible for a screw gate to open. I have no evidence of either happening and can't say one way is better than another. Just food for thought. JoeGaribay
From Ventura, Ca
Joined Apr 26, 2014
66 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Sherpapa
My kids are 7 & 8 and we taught them how to tie in as most suggested, however, there are times when clipping in is needed and you could use two of the speciality biners like the BD Gridlock opposite and opposed gates. These biners are nice to keep it oriented correctly and prevents cross loading. Most manufactures make biners like this.



Rock Climbing Photo: BD Gridlock Screwgate
BD Gridlock Screwgate
Chris Walden
From Soldotna, Alaska
Joined Aug 21, 2014
442 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Me trying to FA Solomon Grundy
When I have done youth comps, we attach the kids with two opposite and opposed lockers, it does speed things up if you're trying to get a bunch of kids through. EthanC
Joined Jun 17, 2013
287 points
Apr 27, 2016
If it's just a couple of kids, I would try to teach them to tie in. If its a whole mess of kids like at a birthday party, camp, or class field trip- where they would get almost no time on the rock anyway, I have definitely seen two opposed lockers used and would have to believe it's safe. Triple action lockers would be the best if you have em. Mike13
Joined Dec 11, 2013
11 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Miniholland
And don't forget a tag line! Sometimes you have to pull the kids down because they're too light to be belayed. I was belaying my friends son and sent my friend to scramble to the top of easy 5th class so he could butterfly in with his son and be lowered. JoeGaribay
From Ventura, Ca
Joined Apr 26, 2014
66 points
Apr 27, 2016
One thing to think about: if it's just your kids, then go with what you're comfortable with. If working with large groups or other's kids, there may be other questions or issues at stake. If at a camp for instance, you may be required to do it a certain way for policy or insurance reasons. If you usually tie in for safety reasons, an insurance company won't like using biners for the sake of speeding things up. Or look at the manufacturer's recommendations for the harness you're using and go with that. Just food for thought.

If you personally feel one way is safer, that answers your question. Don't go for speed over safety, especially if this is a program setting.
MP77
Joined Dec 17, 2014
6 points
Apr 27, 2016
mediocre wrote:
You have to keep an eye on the biners because they can potentially be cross loaded when giving and taking slack out of the system or if the kids start running up the wall and you're playing catch-up with the belay. i know gyms use this system but It happens a lot easier than you think.


A couple things. He mentioned using 2 biners (opposite and opposed). If one does rotate, the other is unlikely to do so as well. Also, even cross-loaded, a carabiner is generally rated for at least 7 kN (lockers, generally more). Anyone on a TR fall, especially a kid on a TR fall will not generate anything even close to 7kN on the biner. This really isn't a worry.
David Gibbs
From Ottawa, ON
Joined Aug 18, 2010
10 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Me trying to FA Solomon Grundy
David Gibbs wrote:
A couple things. He mentioned using 2 biners (opposite and opposed). If one does rotate, the other is unlikely to do so as well. Also, even cross-loaded, a carabiner is generally rated for at least 7 kN (lockers, generally more). Anyone on a TR fall, especially a kid on a TR fall will not generate anything even close to 7kN on the biner. This really isn't a worry.


Just expanding on this because this is a pet peeve of mine, You really don't need to worry about cross-loading a belay biner. It's almost impossible to generate 7kN on a belay biner, regardless of how heavy or light the climber is or how far the fall is, because a belay device slips. An ATC can only generate about 1kN of braking force before it slips, and a grigri can only generate about 6kN, even less on thin ropes.
EthanC
Joined Jun 17, 2013
287 points
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Annapolis Rock, MD
With my kids, I just stand over their shoulder and tie them in myself. My older kids do it themselves now, but for youngsters (3-10 maybe) I like to make sure I do everything to be sure they're safe. As someone pointed out it takes longer to get them on the climb but then, when I take them climbing I'm prepared for a longer day and they are usually having fun regardless.

Also I would say be very aware of how scared a child is getting. If they are freaking out 10 feet off the deck it's a good idea to bring them down. It's not appropriate to have them "face their fear" at this point! I've had to talk my youngest daughter into sitting back on the rope at the top of a climb so I could lower her, and it took a LOT of patient talking. Whatever you do, don't get angry and yell. If they are freaked they will just hold on tighter. The person who suggest a tag line had a good idea there I think...


Matthew Williams 1
From Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Joined Nov 26, 2014
88 points
Apr 27, 2016
Dem krauts figured it out decades ago

alpenverein.de/chameleon/publi...

Honestly just use 2 opposed lockers .... 3 stage autolockers ir yr worried

Better to teach em to tie in ...

And youll need to inspect em everytime anyways

;)
bearbreeder
Joined Mar 1, 2009
3,068 points
Administrator
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: OMG!
A guide in J-tree saw me tie a figure 8 on a bight and clip it with a biner. His comment
"What, is your life not worth the extra 30 seconds it takes to tie in safely?"
¢.02
Muscrat
Joined Oct 27, 2011
3,553 points
Apr 27, 2016
Muscrat wrote:
A guide in J-tree saw me tie a figure 8 on a bight and clip it with a biner. His comment "What, is your life not worth the extra 30 seconds it takes to tie in safely?" ¢.02


A guide said it, therefor it must be true.
David Gibbs
From Ottawa, ON
Joined Aug 18, 2010
10 points
Administrator
Apr 27, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: OMG!
David Gibbs wrote:
A guide said it, therefor it must be true.

It matters not who said it, if it is, and it is, true. Why focus on who said it. If i said i martian said it, or a n00b, or dog forbid a girl, would you point it out? The important point is the OP asked an important question, one that does not come up often enough. I can only suppose the reason it is done in the gym is that there is not an employee to check every time someone ties in.
SO i will change my post to "A goddess saw me..."
HA!
(snarf snarf)
Muscrat
Joined Oct 27, 2011
3,553 points
Apr 28, 2016
Muscrat said, " A guide in J-tree saw me tie a figure 8 on a bight and clip it with a biner. His comment
"What, is your life not worth the extra 30 seconds it takes to tie in safely?"
¢.02"

dagibbs said "A guide said it, therefor it must be true."

Muscrat wrote:
It matters not who said it, if it is, and it is, true. Why focus on who said it. If i said i martian said it, or a n00b, or dog forbid a girl, would you point it out? The important point is the OP asked an important question, one that does not come up often enough. I can only suppose the reason it is done in the gym is that there is not an employee to check every time someone ties in. SO i will change my post to "A goddess saw me..." HA! (snarf snarf)


You are correct, I was wrong to just attack your appeal-to-authority argument, I should also have dealt with the invalidity of the statement itself. Thanks for bringing that to my attention.

The argument:
It takes (only) an extra thirty seconds to tie-in "safely", which I would read as a figure-8 follow-through through the appropriate places on the harness.
It is life-threatening to use the carabiner method.

I'm going to assume the carabiner used was, in fact, a locking carabiner. (As this is in the context of the OP talking about using two locking carabiners.)

So, what are our comparative risk points?

We've got a figure-8 knot at the climber's end in both cases.
We have an extra locking carabiner used at the climber's end. (Or two).

Assumption: we're talking a top-rope situation. (Again, based on the original post about TRing kids.)

The extra risk is that:
1. the carabiner might break. Unlikely. Even if we cross-load it, a TR fall won't exceed the cross-load breaking strength of our carabiner. And we are already trusting a single carabiner to not break on the belay side of the rope.
2. The carabiner might come undone. We're using a locking carabiner. Or, as the OP says, two locking carabiners.

What risks are mitigated by the carabiner choice?

Well, this sort of clip-in is generally used in situations where a group of people are TRing a climb on a group outing, or with kids. In both cases, this is a high-distraction situation. The most common tie-in failure seems to be someone getting distracted and not completing their tie-in (e.g. John Long, Lynn Hill). Given this is a high distraction situation (especially with kids around, as in the OP), the far shorter action period of clipping in will mitigate the risk of an improper or incomplete tie-in. Also, a clip-in is easier to inspect than a tie-in.

In this situation, as suggested by the OP, and in similar large-group situations, I think that a clip-in choice will actually be overall safer than having each person tie-in.

Also, in this situation, the tie-in duration will often be longer than 30 seconds since the people doing it are often less practiced.

Finally, not an issue with kids generally, but with a group of newbies TRing stuff, the longer delay is often the untying of a welded figure 8. Using a clip-in, means untying that figure-8 need only be dealt with once, at the end of the day, rather than after each climber. So, it will likely save much more than 30 seconds an iteration.

But, really, I think the biggest win is that it is a quick, simple, operation which is important in a high-distraction environment.
David Gibbs
From Ottawa, ON
Joined Aug 18, 2010
10 points
Apr 28, 2016
My two cents - In this situation, two locking carabiners is fine. Carry on. FrankPS
From Atascadero, CA
Joined Nov 19, 2009
279 points


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