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#51560 - 04/21/10 08:33 PM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: RangerRob]
Julie Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
Manny, are you careful to prevent zippering? Your preference for passive gear is great, but there is the directionality aspect to watch for.

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#51561 - 04/21/10 11:19 PM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: Julie]
manny Offline
stranger

Registered: 03/27/10
Posts: 15
Loc: NYC
Julie, yes, and that's actually something that was re-enforced for me last week. I've discovered I'm a HUGE fan of tri-cams and feel great security in having them be my first piece. I would place them carefully and think, sweet, there's no way this can walk out... wrong. Zippering never happened, but on my first two pitches leading, and for the very first piece of each pitch, my partner told me that by the time he had to clean them, those first pieces were consistently crap, one had actually even walked out. It wasn't an extension problem, I did my best to keep that line smooth, apparently just the little vibration here and there over the course of the rest of my climb really weakened those placements.

So my game plan changed, and I now throw that first piece in opposition every time. No problems since, and my climbing partner is much happier that it is so much harder to remove that first piece.

I do have a question about that though, to hear what people have to say on the matter. So, pieces in opposition.... When I do it, I keep them vertical, try to take advantage of the full force rating for each piece, for a full upward and downward pull. BUT, I know I'm going to have to throw them in horizontal at some point. And what worries my is that my understanding of the physics of anchors tells me that falling in something like that will seriously multiply the forces on each of the two anchors substantially, since they are held taught and you pull perpendicular. It's the same reason I've been taught for keeping your top anchor from making an angle of more than 60 degrees at most right?

I guess what I'm asking is, simply, are these concerns for putting horizontal pro (passive) in opposition legitimate?

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#51569 - 04/22/10 02:22 AM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: manny]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
It doesn't matter whether vertical or horizontal. Extend slings, etc. to prevent the angle between pieces from exceeding 60 degrees or find a nice multi-directional another way. Many teach that the first piece should be a cam for this reason, but clearly it can often be achieved other ways.
John Long wrote two Climbing Anchors books, the first with Bob Gaines and I think the second with Craig Luebben and these are awesome for opening up your thought process about placements. They are MUST READ material for any trad leader.

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#51570 - 04/22/10 02:23 AM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: manny]
pitfall Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/01/00
Posts: 1165
Loc: Albany
When using passive gear as first pieces, the belayer can make a huge difference. Far too often I see belayers trying to belay so they are comfortable rather than effective, and far too often that means they are away from the rock. No good. If a belayer stays close to the cliff and in line with the climb, walking can usually be minimized, less rope is out (meaning less rope stretch) while the leader is still low on the climb, and nuts have less tendency to pull. Of course this all goes out the window if the climb, or leader, wanders early, but it is something that is often overlooked.

Recently I was told how easy it is to deck on the opening moves of classic. Are you effing kidding me? The move is with a pin close to your waist and if clipped with a biner rather than a 2' sling and a belayer close to the start of the actual climbing, it is maybe a 2' fall.
_________________________

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#51576 - 04/22/10 03:11 AM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: pitfall]
manny Offline
stranger

Registered: 03/27/10
Posts: 15
Loc: NYC
Well I've pretty much devoured Craig Luebben's books (his 'Basics' and his 'Anchors') though I haven't read John Long. I'll look into these (can't have enough gear books!)

That's kind of the reason for my question, actually. Craig Luebben made quite an effort in detailing why you GOTTA be careful with the angles, though he also described the stoppers (or tricams) in opposition tactic I'm trying (if I find a picture for clarity, I'll try to post it up), which seeeems to add a bit of force multiplication to the system as a sacrifice for making it multidirectional.

pitfall, your point about the belayer noted, I'll ask my buddy where he stands next time, though I imagine getting that first piece up a bit higher helps to lessen this effect right?

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#51577 - 04/22/10 03:35 AM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: manny]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Long's Climbing Anchors 2nd ed (w/ Bob Gaines btw) has a very short section on horizontal oppositional pieces, probably nothing you haven't read in Luebben's book.

Great book though, definitely worth the price.

The forces are a concern of course, but if that's all you got, well, don't fall. Sometimes I climb above marginal pieces, but other times I retreat and climb something else.
_________________________


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#51586 - 04/22/10 01:53 PM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: quanto_the_mad]
Julie Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 2090
Loc: SoCal
Manny, I am impressed with the thought you've put into this!

Pitfall brought up a good point, with a good example - Classic is "known as" an ankle-breaker, but (at least now that the tree is gone) there's no reason for that at all. I think in the early stages of leading, we often don't think much of the belayer's role, and we tend to defer to whatever they want to do, wherever they want to be, however much slack they want to reel out .... but in reality, the belayer can be crucial, and in reality, the climber's wish is the belayer's command, entirely. So it's good to think about what you want your belayer to be doing, and check that that's happening.

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#51591 - 04/22/10 02:35 PM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique please [Re: pitfall]
MarcC Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
Originally Posted By: pitfall
Recently I was told how easy it is to deck on the opening moves of classic. Are you effing kidding me?

Apparently for some, it is. wink
_________________________
- Marc

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#51599 - 04/22/10 09:15 PM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique pl [Re: quanto_the_mad]
Ralph Offline
member

Registered: 02/01/07
Posts: 141
qtm,

Did not Mr. Long's 2nd edition of Climbing Anchors also give a special thanks to one Richard Goldstone?

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#51602 - 04/22/10 10:44 PM Re: New to gunks, new to leading, rack critique pl [Re: Ralph]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
Nice to know we aren't the only ones who appreciate him.

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