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Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 13:13:52 MDT Print View

Don't know if this is the place to ask or not, but what is a good rope (and good value) to use as a dedicated rappelling rope? Thanks.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 13:28:02 MDT Print View

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000B8A9IO

I've been using the Blue Water II Plus 10.5mm for many years. Probably the most common static rope I see out there.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
raps on 04/03/2012 13:34:14 MDT Print View

what kind of raps will you be using it for, canyoneering, caving, alpine, etc ... how far are you planning on carrying it ... do you ever plan on climbing on it later

what kind of device are you using

Edited by bearbreeder on 04/03/2012 13:34:44 MDT.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Frequency and weight on 04/03/2012 14:02:54 MDT Print View

Do you care about weight or durability?

http://www.mazamas.org/your/adventure/nw/try-a-short-static-rope-for-glacier-travel/

"The weight savings is amazing! My 10.0mm, 60 meter rock rope weighs 8 lbs. 10oz (3, 912 grams), or 65 grams per meter ( pretty standard for a burly rock rope).
My skinny 8mm, 40 meter glacier rope? How about a featherweight 3 lbs. 4oz (1,474 grams), a mere 37 grams per meter?"

Edited by oware on 04/03/2012 14:29:12 MDT.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Old School Rappelling Rope? on 04/03/2012 14:14:22 MDT Print View

Forty-odd years ago, we had a U.S. Army rappelling school overseas. Our primary mission was to train ground troops how to get down some steep cliff in a hurry and without injury. I was an assistant instructor in the class, so I did not have much say over the types of equipment that we used on the trainees. Back then, the best rope was a laid rope (not a kernmantle rope). All of our ropes were made of green nylon, and they were very similar to the brand Goldline. All of our ropes were half-inch diameter except for maybe one or two that were 7/16 inch. All of our ropes were 150 feet in length since the main cliff that we used was around 120 feet or more.

Each person had to tie up a Swiss Seat, which is one-inch nylon webbing tied around the waist and hips and crotch and knotted correctly. Onto that central knot, we clipped an ordinary carabiner with the gate up and facing forward. Then we would straddle the standing rope near its top anchor and clip the carabiner onto the rope with two twists. One of us would inspect for safety, and then, with a step or two to the rear, the person would be over the cliff edge and falling. We used no safety lines or hardware.

If you are not careful at the bottom, your carabiner will be intensely hot from friction, and you can burn your forearms. In fact, if you don't step off the bottom of the rope quickly, you can burn/melt the rope from the heat. I think I still have some light burn scars on my forearms from that time.

You have to have some idea how important it is to have a static rope versus a dynamic rope, since they are kind of two different things. Laid ropes tend to be rather stretchy. You need to periodically inspect your ropes to look for signs of melting or fraying.

--B.G.--

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 15:30:00 MDT Print View

I'll be using the rope to teach Boy Scouts how to rappel, and we're going caving in SE New Mexico later in the month. It would be nice if it could be used to top rope, but if that meant it wore out in a year, I don't want that. I can't imagine I'd ever be carrying it over a mile or two.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 15:45:25 MDT Print View

Some caves are very wet, and some ropes are better for wet than others. I know. I grew up as a caver. For scouts, I would think that there will be rules for using a light safety rope in many circumstances. Also, we used to use a big leather blanket to cover the top edge where the rope rubs. That will decrease your rope wear by a huge amount. You can paint the blanket with the symbol for your scout organization.

Also, it would be good to teach the scouts how to inspect each others knots for safety. At first, it will be an adult supervising. Later, you can teach the scouts to inspect for their buddy. Even make an intentional mistake and get the scouts to spot that.

--B.G.--

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
Re: Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 17:21:50 MDT Print View

joe ... get a 10-10.5 mm static rope ... for caving i believe yr mostly rappeling and ascending ... the exception is if youll be belaying in the cave then youll want something dynamic ... if you plan on TRing alot then dynamic is likely better

im assuming that you and yr scouts will be using ATCs/8s or a similar device to rappel ... you definately dont want to go too thin with an 8 ... nor with a munter should you use it

my advice is to get the cheapest decent brand certified rope that you can in that range ... look for what length you need ... itll likely be a 60 or 70m ... dry treatment is up to you, but itll wear off quickly with rapelling and top roping and its not needed for your purposes


a suitable rope will likely cost you between 100-150$

Edited by bearbreeder on 04/03/2012 17:26:21 MDT.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Re: Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 20:35:25 MDT Print View

If weight isn't the issue, then everyone's suggestion of a static rope, bluewater etc.
in 10+ mm is a good one.

Top roping with a static rope is sometime preferred over a dynamic rope particularly
when used as a sling shot. This keeps the climber from grounding due to rope stretch
over a long length of rope out.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 21:47:42 MDT Print View

Thanks for the help. Most of the caves we'd be going into only require a rope at the entrance. We have a dynamic rope for belay. We'll see how it all works out.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
Re: Re: Rappelling rope? on 04/03/2012 23:52:44 MDT Print View

the problem with top roping with a static is that the belayers must be quite attentive, no slack can be allowed to build up as the rope has very little absorbing stretch ...

the trick with a dynamic TR is to pre tension the rope at the base ... get the belayer to jump up a bit and pull the rope tight ...

note that most gyms use dynamic ropes for their TR walls ... and they all have kids

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
tricks on 04/04/2012 11:09:58 MDT Print View

I use both kinds of ropes for commercial program use. "Tricks" are not something to be depended on.
Most climbing gyms have lead climbing, which you do not want someone mistakenly trying on a static line.
Rescue groups may use the static line as the belay line and the dynamic rope as the
raising and lowering line at times. The increased weight of the litter and attendants
on a dynamic rope when used as a belay can cause too much drop when loaded suddenly, causing injury to those
being lowered.

Edited by oware on 04/04/2012 11:11:40 MDT.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
Re: tricks on 04/05/2012 00:09:21 MDT Print View

thats odd david .. almost everyone in squamish, even guides, use dynamic ropes for top roping ... maybe they dont know how to do it properly ;)

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
squamish on 04/09/2012 16:38:38 MDT Print View

Kind of an out of the way climbing spot.

Here is an example of gym rope that is a static line.

http://www.sterlingrope.com/product/458880/SP100/_/10mm_SafetyPro

Lots of static lines used for wall and expedition fixing.

----

Also interesting video of tools for self evac (firemen, ski patrol etc.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WMI3wj3V48E

----

Something interesting I read was about tests on old climbing ropes.
They drop tested a bunch, up to 28 years old. All that showed no physical signs of damage passed the drop tests. Anyone have the link? I would like to double check my memory.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
old ropes on 04/09/2012 18:21:30 MDT Print View

"They drop tested a bunch, up to 28 years old. All that showed no physical signs of damage passed the drop tests."

I have a 50-meter 11mm kernmantle rope hanging in my garage. It is still sealed in the original plastic bag, has never been uncoiled, and looks perfect. It would be interesting to test it, because I purchased it in 1978.

--B.G.--

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
Re: squamish on 04/09/2012 21:23:30 MDT Print View

well they do the same in the canadian rockies as well ...

and most climbers, guides and gyms i know too

dynamic ropes for top roping ...

guess were all doing it wrong ;)

here's sterling ropes gym series ... not they dont say "alternative" ... it just says gym =P

Edited by bearbreeder on 04/09/2012 21:25:31 MDT.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Canada on 04/09/2012 22:04:20 MDT Print View

There is like what, 100 climbers in Canada? ;^)

A Dynamic rope is rarely the wrong choice.

Static lines are just better at a few things.

Jamie Estep
(jestep) - F

Locale: ATX
Static unless on 04/17/2012 10:23:40 MDT Print View

I wouldn't consider a static rope if you plan on doing any toproping or climbing at all, or there's even a slight chance of it. Look around for studies of impact force when a climber takes even a small fall on a static rope. It's not good. Otherwise for rappelling or gear hauling, static would definitely be the way to go. Use a rappelling rack or figure 8 for descending.

Doug Smith
(Jedi5150) - F - M

Locale: Central CA
CMC Rescue on 04/19/2012 00:21:06 MDT Print View

I was the head of our SAR team's cliff rescue team for a few years, and I also taught our SWAT team members basic rappelling. We bought all our ropes and gear from CMC Rescue. We use 1/2" kern-mantle such as the Static Pro Lifeline and steel rescue 8 plates for rescues involving more than 1 person on line (ie: litter tender plus patient). For single person on line or remote back-country stuff we used 7/16" ropes and aluminum rescue 8 plates. We pretty much followed NFPA guidelines when it came to technical gear.

Over the years we started replacing the 8 plates with the brake-bar rack for the majority of our rescues. I'm a die-hard 8 plate fan myself because I like simplicity and bomb-proof, especially when it's cold, dark, wet and muddy, and you're going on zero sleep (the majority of rescues ;-). But even I will admit that the bar rack has some great things going for it, such as the ability to add and decrease friction under load, as well as it doesn't twist your ropes up as bad on long drops like the 8 plates do.

As for anchors, we use 1" tubular webbing, typically a 3 wrap, 2 pull, although where practical, a tensionless hitch with the rappell line is often my personal favorite choice.

If I could give you one piece of advice before taking the scouts out, it would be always have back-ups. Always use a safety line in addition to your main line. Secondly, always have a rescuer suited up and ready for a pick-off at a moments notice. When someone gets hung up or freezes up mentally while over the side, that is not the time to be practicing pick-offs or getting your back-up system in place. I've seen training/ play sessions go to "real time rescues" on more than one occassion because of unforseen situations, especially where novice rappellers are involved.

Finally, always have a safety officer designated. That person's sole job is to check every knot, every system, every anchor, every harness, helmet, etc. before people go over the side. Your system should be set up so that if a whistle blows at any time, every single person there can let go of what they are holding and the person on-line will not drop. You accomplish this with brakes and safety lines (rescuesenders, Gibbs, prusik cords, etc.). Nobody should go over the side in anything less than a full body harness. This doesn't mean you have to buy a comercially made one. A seat harness and webbing chest loop will work just fine. but the person has to be able to stay in their harness while inverted.

Sorry if it sounds like I'm coming across as an alarmist. I'm all in favor of teaching scouts rappelling (I did it when I was a scout). But at the same time, rappelling is an exceptionally dangerous activity (far more so than firearms training), and emergencies often do happen. Scouts are at the perfect age to teach not only how fun rappelling can be, but also respect for dangerous activities and how to be safety-conscious in general. I'd highly suggest practicing setting up and taking down systems, including the rappelling itself, on flat terrain before doing it for real.

Edited by Jedi5150 on 04/19/2012 00:36:04 MDT.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
odd on 04/19/2012 02:53:44 MDT Print View

thats odd as guides generally teach rappelling the usual way ... rappel down, usually with a prussik and possibly a firemans to start

i havent head of any accidents doing so under proper supervision

not saying its right or wrong ...

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: CMC Rescue on 04/19/2012 03:57:58 MDT Print View

> we started replacing the 8 plates with the brake-bar rack for the majority of our rescues.
Wet canyoning in NSW (Australia) in the walking clubs is pretty big stuff. Some abs are nearly 50 m. By and large, figure-of-8s are banned by all clubs, on safety grounds. Yes, we use a highly developed (bar) rack. Heavy, but VERY reliable.

For wet canyons we use static ropes.

Cheers

Edited by rcaffin on 04/21/2012 00:41:51 MDT.

Brian Austin
(footeab) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re: CMC Rescue on 04/20/2012 01:27:25 MDT Print View

1 person as safety knot check?

Sounds like bad way to teach IMO. EVERYONE needs to be checking all the knots ALL THE TIME. Get them in the habit to take personal responsibility for their own safety. This is NOT to be taken lightly or to assume that someone else did it FOR YOU.

Figure 8 banned? Makes a mess of the ropes I agree, but banned? Rediculous. Sounds more like a bunch of power hungry zealots in charge of "safety". Tieing off an 8 is simplicity itself. A tac bar... for very long repels, sure, but all the time? Heck no! Teach the munter hitch right after basic repel technique!

Heck the first time I learned how to repel I did it upside down. They were teaching us TRUST in the rope/gear and how to get out of being inverted. If one is NOT going to teach this first time out, then ya, maybe a chest sling. They also taught 1st thing out a fireman rappel stop.

PS. Make sure the scouts wear OLD T-Shirts/jackets as the likelyhood of them getting their clothes STUCK in the repel device are high and ripped. If they are young and light enough, they might have a VERY difficult time actually repeling on a larger rope. Then if they get their shirt stuck in the repel device on top of this... Beware!

Doug Smith
(Jedi5150) - F - M

Locale: Central CA
Re: CMC Rescue on 04/20/2012 10:39:21 MDT Print View

"1 person as safety knot check?

Sounds like bad way to teach IMO. EVERYONE needs to be checking all the knots ALL THE TIME. Get them in the habit to take personal responsibility for their own safety. This is NOT to be taken lightly or to assume that someone else did it FOR YOU."

Sorry for not making that clear enough Brian. I figured it was a given that everyone is responsible for their own safety. On top of that, a full-time safety officer is designated. Does that make more sense now?

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Re: Static unless on 04/20/2012 16:19:57 MDT Print View

From: Rock Climbing by Craig Luebben
"Static ropes work fine for rappelling and top roping, but never lead on a static rope."

From: The Mountaineering Handbook by Craig Connally
"Static ropes ..... are designed for caving, rescue, rappelling, canyoneering, hauling, expeditionary fixed lines, top roping, gym climbing ..."

Static lines are much more durable. Less rope stretch is part of the reason
why. Gym ropes can be semi static and split the difference in elongation. Personally I
own a 10 mill lead line, and a 9 mill rap and glacier line. At one point in my
life I wore out an 11 mill line one year top roping. If I had it to do over again, I
would have saved my lead line by buying an extra static for the top roping.

----

"thats odd as guides generally teach rappelling the usual way ... rappel down, usually with a prussik and possibly a firemans to start

i havent head of any accidents doing so under proper supervision

not saying its right or wrong ..."


All the places I have worked (about 6) for that did climbing with students used a separate and
independently anchored belay rope when rappelling. And the rappel rope was tied to the
anchor with a munter/mule hitch on a master biner. This way if the student got stuck (clothing in device etc.)
the rappel rope could be loosed and the student lowered enough onto the belay
while the device was cleared, or be lowered on the belay rope all the way down.
This can be particularly important on a summit with weather coming in. You don't
want a student stuck halfway blocking everyone's escape.

Edited by oware on 04/20/2012 16:24:57 MDT.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Re: Static unless on 04/20/2012 16:22:05 MDT Print View

"I wouldn't consider a static rope if you plan on doing any toproping or climbing at all, or there's even a slight chance of it. Look around for studies of impact force when a climber takes even a small fall on a static rope. It's not good. Otherwise for rappelling or gear hauling, static would definitely be the way to go. Use a rappelling rack or figure 8 for descending."

Jamie- lets see a link.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Re: CMC Rescue on 04/21/2012 00:52:21 MDT Print View

Brian

> Makes a mess of the ropes I agree, but banned? Rediculous. Sounds more like a bunch
> of power hungry zealots in charge of "safety".
Sorry if I roll around on the floor in mirth. The idea of 'power hungry zealots' in some of our clubs is simply ... hilarious.

Sometimes the ropes belong to the club, and sometimes they belong to a member. They cost money and have a finite life. The decision to ban figure-of-8s was made in order to protect the ropes, the owners of the ropes, and the novices.

When you are doing three consecutive abseils each of 30 m or so, each one through a waterfall and ending up in deep water (swimming), and you are mostly in the pitch dark because you are so deep into the cliffline, and the water is close to 5 C, you don't fool around. It's great fun, but people have died when they have got into trouble.

Sorry, but you are such a long, long way off the mark.

Cheers

Edited by rcaffin on 04/21/2012 00:53:12 MDT.

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Is that a real rap rope or a Sears rap rope? on 04/21/2012 18:13:46 MDT Print View

Here is one I googled. Don't know the seller and haven't used the rope.

It is a 9 mm 150 ft long and $80 shipped. Should be good for light scouts when going
over the edge, as it is low stretch yet thin enough to run through the devices well.

"Edelweiss low stretch ropes are the perfect combination of price and quality. Edelweiss low stretch ropes differ from American static lines due to the fact that they are designed to take up to a factor one fall. These ropes WILL stretch a little to allow them to absorb a factor one fall. The lines are made completely from Polyamide (nylon), which gives them a high strength rating. These ropes are great for cavers, canyoneers, and climbers."

http://www.everestgear.com/443410.html?productid=443410&channelid=FROOG

Here is the same thing offered by Sears!
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_SPM6323462901P?sid=IDx20070921x00003a&ci_src=14110944&ci_sku=SPM6323462901

Edited by oware on 04/21/2012 18:16:14 MDT.

Jamie Estep
(jestep) - F

Locale: ATX
Re: Re: Static unless on 04/23/2012 08:03:14 MDT Print View

I'll see if I can find a link online. The specific article I'm referring to was in a print Climbing or R&I, can't remember which one, that I had back in high school. It basically said even something like a 1 ft fall on static could cause spinal injuries.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F - M
Re: Re: Static unless on 04/23/2012 10:02:24 MDT Print View

the issue on TRing on a static is that unless the belayer is VERY vigilant ... which honestly some people, especially kids arent, any decent slack in the rope can cause hard fall as there is little stretch

the issue with TRing on a dynamic rope ... is that rope stretch can be an issue on the first 10-15 feet of a climb ... which is alleviated by having the belayer pretension the rope

each has its advantages and disadvantages ...

most guides out here and gyms however use dynamic ropes .... and they are the ones with liability concerns should something go wrong ... unlike random BPL posters ;)

the person i would be most afraid of is the guy online who keeps on insisting on using ONLY "static" or something like that for TRing ... the first question i would ask is how much do ya climb outside and how many groups do ya take out ...

Edited by bearbreeder on 04/23/2012 10:04:04 MDT.

Tyler H
(ctwnwood) - F

Locale: Utah
static vs dynamic rope on 04/23/2012 10:24:05 MDT Print View

Some people have suggested but nobody has clearly stated, after all these posts:

YOU SHOULD NEVER CLIMB ON A STATIC ROPE!

Here are some links: http://www.camp4.com/rock/index.php?newsid=231
http://www.southeastclimbing.com/faq/faq_fall_factor.htm

As in any discussion of best climbing practices there are widely varying opinions, held on a variety of bases which are more or less out of date.

It is widely accepted that climbing on a static rope is dangerous and can put fatal forces on the body or gear.

If you want to use the rope for both climbing and rappelling it should be dynamic. It sounds like your group's uses might warrant purchasing a burly, static, rappel rope and a dynamic climbing rope. Both should be in the 10-10.5mm range, although the rappel rope could be thinner if weight is a concern.


"Static ropes - traditionally used mostly in caving and rescue but now also used for sport rappelling and even in climbing gyms - are designed to minimize stretch ( cavers hate feeling like yo-yo's). So their ability to absorb shock is marginal, particularly along short lengths of rope. What's more, static ropes aren't as well defined by industry codes as dynamic ropes, so they vary in elasticity according to the manufacturer and the country of origin. They're often about as non-dynamic as a cable, and transmit virtually all the shock load to the safety system and the body. And in a climbing situation, a very short fall can develop enough force to be critical."

David Olsen
(oware)

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Static Ropes and climbing on 04/23/2012 10:41:01 MDT Print View

Those are good articles. Perhaps since there seems to be confusion even on this thread,
NEVER climbing on a static rope is the best rule of thumb.

The articles do point out tho that static ropes can and are used in gyms and thoughtfully
on some top rope climbs. A long slingshot toprope belay is where I find them useful.

http://climbing.about.com/od/cliimbingtechniques/a/Sling-Shot-Belay.htm

"A static rope may be used (cautiously) in a top rope system or a gym where falls are measured only in inches, but not in the system used for lead climbing."

Edited by oware on 04/23/2012 12:25:18 MDT.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Rappelling rope? on 04/23/2012 13:10:23 MDT Print View

Oops! I wasn't meaning to start any holy wars! I was kind of surprised when I remembered to check this. I ended up buying a 9mm Sterling HTP static, a 10.5mm Bluewater Gym Rope (static), and a 10.2 Sterling Evolution Kosmos. Used the static ropes for rappelling only, although I used the gym rope for TR when I could belay. Mostly used the dynamic for TR. Everyone had fun, got to feel a little adreneline, and go past some places they didn't think they could.