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Jan 8, 2017
Chris CW wrote:
You can always avoid a real factor 2 by simply using the anchor as your first piece of protection.


This isn't always true. Sometimes the anchor is low, for example at waist level. Even if the anchor is at shoulder level, catching a fall on it will probably mangle the belayer's non-brake hand and, in jamming the device up against the anchor carabiner, possibly release the device.

Then there is the issue of less than perfect anchors. According to some internet theoreticians, there is no such thing, but those of us who have been forced to live in the real world have had the scary experience of having to employ such things. It then becomes an interesting question whether the anchor should be clipped or not, since the factor-2 anchor load is going to be considerably less than the anchor load if the anchor is clipped. In at least one situation I faced a few years ago, I opted for not clipping the anchor rather than apply a much higher load to four fingertip-sized cams in a soft sandstone horizontal. This on a pitch that was very runout and clearly had no further protection for a long way.

[Note: One solution that sometimes can be implemented, depending on the terrain below the belay stance, is to lower the belayer a significant distance below the anchor so that the fall factor onto the anchor is diminished.]
rgold
From Poughkeepsie, NY
Joined Feb 15, 2008
40 points
Jan 8, 2017
willgadd.com/anchor-clipping/

willgadd.com/anchor-clipping-2...

blog.alpineinstitute.com/2016/...

In most situations, clipping the anchor is a bad idea, especially if it's a gear anchor.
Ted Pinson
From Chicago, IL
Joined Jul 11, 2014
40 points
Jan 8, 2017
Come on RGoLD. You can always keep the anchor above you by just hanging off of it. Extending the anchor point with the rope. And you can always belay off your waist. Chris CW
From Boulder, CO
Joined Jul 14, 2016
0 points
Jan 8, 2017
Yes Ted. I read what Will Gadd said. Last small paragraph sums it up. Think about what might happen before leader takes off and plan accordingly.Sometimes clipping the top piece on the anchor might not help or be a good idea. I have caught two huge falls near factor 2 in 30 years of climbing. You don't forget. Chris CW
From Boulder, CO
Joined Jul 14, 2016
0 points
Jan 8, 2017
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
I take someone who gets it done any day over a tech weinie gear head..... Isa getting it done FFF P2 of the Cleaver. Before you get your pantys all bunched up over bolting a crack, that thing is a huge detached flake that sounded like a tuning fork in Bb when I tapped it with my hammer. I did have a hex in there to drill the bolts on lead but did Not think it was a good idea to take whippers on that thang.....

Unapologetic thread drift here.

Great photo, Nick! But what happens just after this? I can see the left foot and hands, secure, but ready to blast, but was wondering if the right foot is what will be the leverage to go up? Or, does the climber turn the corner? Or...?

Best, Helen
Old lady H
From Boise, Idaho
Joined Aug 24, 2015
30 points
Jan 8, 2017
We sound like some kids talking about jacking off. "Palm up?" or "Palm down?". The big debate. Chris CW
From Boulder, CO
Joined Jul 14, 2016
0 points
Jan 8, 2017
Chris CW wrote:
Come on RGoLD. You can always keep the anchor above you by just hanging off of it. Extending the anchor point with the rope. And you can always belay off your waist.


I said all that in the note at the bottom of my post, with the exception that I didn't say you can "always" do it, and I'm sure you have enough experience to know that "always" isn't true in at least two senses. Sometimes it really isn't practical to chuck the belayer off the stance, and other times when it is at least possible the party may judge the extra time and effort required to be not worth it.

The point is that dealing in absolutes such as always clipping the belay anchor is not a good way to think about climbing solutions. Know what all the options are, do your best to select a solution optimal for the situation you are in, and don't uncritically apply the same solution to every problem.
rgold
From Poughkeepsie, NY
Joined Feb 15, 2008
40 points
Jan 8, 2017
To continue the palm up/down discussion:

I think the better option is to use a munter hitch for two reasons:

1 it provides more braking power than a tube style a device

2 It allows you to brake in direction of gravity. If you're holding the brake up at your chest then you are resisting a downward pull, working against gravity. In the normal brake position you are resisting an upward pull, using gravity to your advantage. This is the same concept as why hauling systems work better if you're pulling down rather than up.
eli poss
From Durango, Co
Joined May 9, 2014
131 points
Jan 8, 2017
rgold wrote:
Sometimes it really isn't practical to chuck the belayer off the stance, and other times when it is at least possible the party may judge the extra time and effort required to be not worth it.

I think I may have found my all time favorite rgold quote.

At least consider who's buyin' the beers first?

Best, H.
Old lady H
From Boise, Idaho
Joined Aug 24, 2015
30 points
Jan 8, 2017
Only if the Munter didn't fuck the rope. Chris CW
From Boulder, CO
Joined Jul 14, 2016
0 points
Jan 9, 2017
there is no substitute for experience. either you have caught a bunch of falls or you haven't. The 5.6 trad climber who has been at for 30 years has less experience catching falls than a 2 year sport climber. When you launch into something serious it's nice to have the real deal holding your rope... I do learn stuff from reading and ocasionaly add something new to my quiver. just think ther palms up or down circle jerk is not going to solve anything. when the feces hits the ventalator your belayer is going to do what is instinctive. Choose wisely ;) Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
15 points
Jan 9, 2017
Roy Suggett wrote:
Good point. So let's go back to the munter hitch belay.


We seem to have a difference in opinion on a number of things!
(I still frequent munter hitches.)
r m
Joined Apr 29, 2015
0 points
Jan 9, 2017
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
there is no substitute for experience. either you have caught a bunch of falls or you haven't. The 5.6 trad climber who has been at for 30 years has less experience catching falls than a 2 year sport climber.


Exactly how many 2 year sport climbers have experience of 10 or 20m FF2 falls?
Jim Titt
From Germany
Joined Nov 10, 2009
0 points
Jan 9, 2017
The big issue with me is how much slack or how much slack the belayer doesn't keep in the system. When falling on a traversing route it's not difficult to break a ankle if the rope is to taught. It's the difference between falling straight down and swinging and falling at a trajectory into the wall and breaking a ankle. Chris CW
From Boulder, CO
Joined Jul 14, 2016
0 points
Jan 9, 2017
climber pat wrote:
In my playing with my grigri 2, it rarely auto locks with a mammut serenity 8.9 mm rope with the dry treatment. The device is brand new and not worn out. The spec for the device is 8.9-11mm and petzl indicates an ideal range of 9.4-10.3mm. I believe their speced range is too optimistic for the 'auto lock' to work. It works fine with a hand on the belay strand. As a side note my 4 year old climbing technologies alpine up often auto locks on the same rope. The alpine up's spec is for 8.6-10.5 mm ropes.


Unless Mammut changed the specifications for the Serenity over the years, it is 8.7mm diameter which puts it below the advertised specification of the Grigri 2. So if it doesn't catch reliably or at all on that rope that doesn't surprise me.

mammut.ch/US/en_US/B2C-Kategor...

Even then, rope with diameters at the low extreme end of the range of a belay device are in my mind suspect with how well they catch until you can safely test it to your own satisfaction.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

As I've been relaying all this information from this thread to my climbing partners in summary form for them, it occurred to me...

Does anyone know what happens in a factor two fall when using a device that has a nose that you hook your thumb into like the Mammut Alpine Smart Belay and Edelrid Megajul? Particularly when the fall is on the brake hand side of the belayer where the belay device will then invert towards your hand potentially catching your thumb with it and/or bashing the device into your hand.

And I wonder with any belay device, if the belayer is not quick to respond with an upward pull, and the leader falls on the brake hand side of the belayer, can the leader side side of the rope catch your wrist or arm and prevent or delay an upward pull?
anotherclimber
Joined Apr 4, 2016
0 points
Jan 9, 2017
The Serenity 8.9 is an older model still available at some shops at least here in Germany.

The MegaJul and some of the other devices of this kind like the AlpineUp specifically exclude FF2 falls in their instructions. Another reason not to carry them on multi-pitch routes.
Jim Titt
From Germany
Joined Nov 10, 2009
0 points
Jan 9, 2017
Jim. your typical moderate trad climber has close to zero experience catching leader falls. The leader must not fall. You typical ice climber is in the same boat. The leader damn well better not fall! I have a friend who has been climbing ice for over 40 years. never caught a leader fall. The only leader fall he has ever taken was a 400 footer soling Odels gully. I had been trad climbing and ice climbing for about 5 years at that point and that was perhaps the first time I saw a leader fall. That of course changed when I started hanging with stronger climbers pushing harder grades and new routing etc but I do believe that your averadge moderate trad climber really has little experience actually catching leader falls.
Sport climbing is a whole different ballgame. I have been at Rumny and watched kids huckin 25 footers all afternoon trying to get to the chains on Flesh For Lulu. I have caught some pretty darn hard falls spurt climbing. trying to keep the leader off the ground when they blow the 1st, 2nd or 3rd clips. So yes your avredge relatively new sport climber most likly has a fair bit of experience catching leader falls while your averadge moderate trad climber may have little or no experience catching leader falls. as for catching 30m FF2 falls I don't know anyone personaly who has experience in that dept and if they do that sort of thing regularly I would just as soon not climb with them.....
Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
15 points
Jan 9, 2017
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
Jim. your typical moderate trad climber has close to zero experience catching leader falls. The leader must not fall. You typical ice climber is in the same boat. The leader damn well better not fall! I have a friend who has been climbing ice for over 40 years. never caught a leader fall. The only leader fall he has ever taken was a 400 footer soling Odels gully. I had been trad climbing and ice climbing for about 5 years at that point and that was perhaps the first time I saw a leader fall. That of course changed when I started hanging with stronger climbers pushing harder grades and new routing etc but I do believe that your averadge moderate trad climber really has little experience actually catching leader falls. Sport climbing is a whole different ballgame. I have been at Rumny and watched kids huckin 25 footers all afternoon trying to get to the chains on Flesh For Lulu. I have caught some pretty darn hard falls spurt climbing. trying to keep the leader off the ground when they blow the 1st, 2nd or 3rd clips. So yes your avredge relatively new sport climber most likly has a fair bit of experience catching leader falls while your averadge moderate trad climber may have little or no experience catching leader falls. as for catching 30m FF2 falls I don't know anyone personaly who has experience in that dept and if they do that sort of thing regularly I would just as soon not climb with them.....


I get that point but honestly these days I prefer to not have someone belay me that hasn't or never catches any falls. I used to all the time but these days I'd just assume not go there. I just dont feel comfortable with someone holding my life in their hands who never falls or nevr catches falls, ATC/grigri whatever.
T Roper
From DC,VA,NM,UT,CT,MA
Joined Mar 31, 2006
730 points
Jan 9, 2017
Helen, The The 2nd pitch of the Cleaver was a huge leverage move with the right leg/heel hook to a big reach to a small crimper. Once you had the crimper it was a power move to stand up and ballance standing on the tip of the flake. From there is was about 30ft of techy 5.9 face to a 15ft slab to the top anchors. Unfourtunatly the roof with 2 of my bolts in it fell off about 24hrs after I did the 2nd free ascent With Isa. We both got it clean and it was the wildest pitch I ever did on rock. Would have been one of my favorite climbs if it had not fallen down...... Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
15 points
Jan 9, 2017
Nick Goldsmith wrote:
Jim. your typical moderate trad climber has close to zero experience catching leader falls. The leader must not fall. You typical ice climber is in the same boat. The leader damn well better not fall! I have a friend who has been climbing ice for over 40 years. never caught a leader fall. The only leader fall he has ever taken was a 400 footer soling Odels gully. I had been trad climbing and ice climbing for about 5 years at that point and that was perhaps the first time I saw a leader fall. That of course changed when I started hanging with stronger climbers pushing harder grades and new routing etc but I do believe that your averadge moderate trad climber really has little experience actually catching leader falls. Sport climbing is a whole different ballgame. I have been at Rumny and watched kids huckin 25 footers all afternoon trying to get to the chains on Flesh For Lulu. I have caught some pretty darn hard falls spurt climbing. trying to keep the leader off the ground when they blow the 1st, 2nd or 3rd clips. So yes your avredge relatively new sport climber most likly has a fair bit of experience catching leader falls while your averadge moderate trad climber may have little or no experience catching leader falls. as for catching 30m FF2 falls I don't know anyone personaly who has experience in that dept and if they do that sort of thing regularly I would just as soon not climb with them.....




TBH this is one of the good things about Gyms that have lead climbing. People do get experience these days taking some whippers (sometimes many) before they venture out to traditional climbing. There are no FF2 falls of course, but plenty of belayers getting lifted off the ground etc.
King Tut
Joined Aug 19, 2012
105 points
Jan 9, 2017
T roper. that is pretty much my feelings. I feel safer with partners that I know sport climb and do FA's I know they know how to catch a fall. On the other hand if someone is crazy enough to take 30m FF2 falls on a reguler basis (never heard of such a thing but that was Jims criteria) I would rather avoid them. Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
15 points
Jan 9, 2017
Ted Pinson wrote:
In most situations, clipping the anchor is a bad idea, especially if it's a gear anchor.


Blanket statements like this should be eliminated from intelligent climbing conversations. It also misses the mark regarding Will Gadd's article. One of his points:

"I’m being safer because I’ve done something” when in fact I think it’s often more dangerous than not clipping the top piece."

I agree with this because it is devoid of thought. Doing something because you were told to do so. This is the real issue in so many areas of climbing. Clipping the top piece is better than the alternative SOMETIMES AND WORSE SOMETIMES. As usual, it depends. It depends on the alternate consequences.

Gadd makes some valid points for sure. But, he does not discuss the alternative event when not clipping a top piece. Yes, factor 2. But, not the change in belay direction. With a piece clipped above, the belayer probably palm down, will brake down. Without a piece clipped, the belay direction will change in a fraction of a second. Now, the belayer needs to brake up! This is very difficult to do when not prepared, especially on factor 2. Rgold has brought this up many times as well. Good luck.

Many things in climbing are situation dependent. This is one of them.
Greg D
From Here
Joined Apr 5, 2006
511 points
Jan 9, 2017
It all goes back to Not takeing FF2 falls and how to NOt have that happen. often slab climbing you have little or no choice but to run it out to the next bolt. Is a slab fall really FF2? either way i have never tested the theory before getting that 1st bolt after the belay.. Nick Goldsmith
From Pomfret VT
Joined Aug 23, 2009
15 points
Jan 9, 2017
On passive braking devices like MJ, would not the braking engage whether the device is pointing up or down? Passive braking depends upon the orientation of biner to device - it seems tension on the climber side of the rope would pull biner to device whether both are pointing up or down? Paul Deger
Joined Sep 15, 2015
20 points
Jan 9, 2017
^^^ well yes. That seems like a valid point except that the jul does not hold a ff2 well on its own. So braking direction is important. Greg D
From Here
Joined Apr 5, 2006
511 points


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