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Top-Rope Soloing Device???
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architectclimber


Mar 10, 2004, 12:23 PM
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Top-Rope Soloing Device???
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I have heard various info regarding which solo device to use for top roping. I have heard a gri-gri is a common alternative to a device made specifically for soloing. I was solo-top roping this weekend and used a Petzl Basic ascender attached to my harness and a make-shift chest harness to keep it vertical. I backed it up with a Prusik knot which roved along with the ascender. It seemed pretty bomber since the forces generated in a top rope fall are not all that extreme. I have heard of modified gri-gri's, or two Ti-Blocks (when you have a double rope situation). Looking for feedback.


Partner j_ung


Mar 10, 2004, 1:16 PM
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Sounds like what you used works pretty well. A Gibbs free-running ascender might be another option.


coclimber26


Mar 10, 2004, 1:23 PM
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I like the petzl microascender, except if you have to downclimb. It's more of a pain than say a soloist.


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Mar 10, 2004, 1:58 PM
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I've used the Soloist for about 14 yrs and it works great. The only drawbacks are you have to use a chest harness, you can't reverse moves(without hanging) and you can't do traverses well. It runs great, you can rap on it easily when you top out, and I have had no prolems at all with it. I figure I have fallen at least 5,000 times on it. I have read some posts by persons improvising solo toprope devices but my life is well worth the $99 I spent on it!


sbclimber


Mar 10, 2004, 2:06 PM
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do you guys fix the rope at the anchors or put it on the middle of the rope like you were going to rap to solo on it? stupid question, but I would like to start doing this.

oh yeah, does the prussik slide up the rope on its own when used as a backup, or do you have to manually slide it up after each move?


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Mar 10, 2004, 2:16 PM
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Fix it and pad the edges. Beware of the use of prussiks. They can melt. Spend the extra $ and get a device designed for the purpose. Your life is worth it.


vagabulla


Mar 10, 2004, 2:23 PM
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I TR-solo about 2 days a week using a Petzl Microcender. I used a Basic for a long time, but I don't like the fact that you can lock the "grab" open. The Microcender has to be assembled completely for it to even stay on the rope, so the visual assurance is a plus.

Typically I climb routes that I can get to the anchors first to set up my fixed line. I tie one end into a double figure-8 loop, secure it to the anchors, and rap the route. At the bottom I "daisy" the excess rope till it hangs off the ground. This is crucial as it provides weight at the bottom of the fixed line, allowing the Microcender to run smoothly.

Sometimes I have to stick-clip/aid the route to get to the anchors. After that it's all the same.


sbclimber


Mar 10, 2004, 2:27 PM
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thanks for the input.


urbansherpa


Mar 10, 2004, 3:08 PM
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I recently bought a Petzl Shunt for this purpose (YES, it is recommended for TR solo by Petzl).

I chose the Shunt because it has no teeth to shred the rope, and has a bit of slippage built in to lessen a shockload.

I intend to use two seperately anchored ropes (actually one rope anchored at the ends, so the bight is at the bottom of the climb) The Shunt will run up one rope, and I'll tie Figure 8 loops in the other rope at 10-20' intervals to seperately clip into as a backup.

I used to use a prusik (instead of the Shunt), but once it was loose, and took about 10' to grab. Actually melted at the rope, spooked me.

I'd caution against a TiBloc for solo TR. I saw one shred a rope mantle (although it was due to a substantial fall factor).

See the Petzl Shunt PDF for info on rigging it.


flamer


Mar 10, 2004, 5:32 PM
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In reply to:
or two Ti-Blocks (when you have a double rope situation).

DO NOT DO THIS EVER!!! It could be fatal.

Use one of the other methods described.
Petzl actually rates their handle ascenders for top rope soloing....
and GRigri's work well also.
josh


olympicmtnboy


Mar 10, 2004, 6:53 PM
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Ushba Basic works well too, also rated for this by the company.


slowdive


Mar 11, 2004, 7:05 AM
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I use a Petzl Ascender and a prussic (sp?) knot above that. The prussic is a little loose so that it doesn't hinder the ascender. I started doing this because one time I forgot to engage my ascender before starting up. It's just a back-up. If someone sees this as a bad thing, please let me know.


Partner coylec


Mar 11, 2004, 9:42 AM
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I use a Petzl Ascender and a prussic (sp?) knot above that. The prussic is a little loose so that it doesn't hinder the ascender. I started doing this because one time I forgot to engage my ascender before starting up. It's just a back-up. If someone sees this as a bad thing, please let me know.

bad thing? eh.
questionable? yeah. others have made the point that prusiks can melt your rope if in a serious fall. it is bad to have a prusik as a backup? I would prefer to use another device/technique for backup (i use a gri-gri with knots at every good stance - gri-gri=primary, knots=backup). However, if your ascender fails, a prusik/tibloc destorying your rope is better than the alternative, the ground-fall. I don't TR solo that much (mostly at work, when I'm working building routes) and my gear selection is limited (I can only use equipment owned by my employer). If you plan to TR solo frequently, look into the soloist, silent partner or other dedicated device. There are advantages and disadvantages to each, research throughly.

coylec

ps - rc.com dictionary says its "prusik," for whatever that is worth (no insult, its just a site dictionary, not the OED. if you spell it prusik, prussik, prusic, or prussic, I'm sure people know what you are talking about.


coclimber26


Mar 13, 2004, 5:29 PM
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I have been solo climbing for about 4 years with the microascender on toprope and the soloist or clove hitches when leading.. Today I was using my microascender and it slipped on a 11mm static..the route was a slightly overhanging face. I got to the top of the overhang and stood on a bulge. I weighted the microascender to take a breather and it slipped 10ft. down to my last safety knot in the rope...a bit alarming to say the least. I know the soloist is not designed to hold a less than vertical fall but was under the assumption the microascender was. during the fall I went over the lip and fell straight down which I can't explain. I've been looking at the Wren silent partner for leading for some time and think I will be getting it soon. Has anyone else had problems with this?


craggincragin


Mar 15, 2004, 12:45 PM
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I still prefer the old bomber method of using autolockers with clove hitches about every 6 feet on the rope, for both solo TR and leading. With TR, just make clove hitches as you rap. It's easier this way so you don't have to make them while climbing.


gunked


Mar 15, 2004, 9:41 PM
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coclimber26, is the microascender that you are using the older style (it has ridges for teeth on the cam and is ? maybe red in color) or the newer style that has a toothed cam similar to an actual ascender?

I found that the older style microascender doesn't always catch. I used it in my hauling system and it usually worked. After a bit of use it sometimes worked. After alot of use, the rope had smoothed it out some, it rarely worked.

The newer style works very well.

George, what's a matter? You don't trust my idea? Just kidding! :lol: Welcome to RC.com and I'll see you in about 7 weeks.

Jason :D


coclimber26


Mar 16, 2004, 7:18 AM
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It's the first one that you speak of, the red one...Guess it's time to donate it to the scrap pile..


gunked


Mar 16, 2004, 7:51 AM
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It makes a lovely key-chain and a Chinese finger trap as well! :roll:

-Jason :lol:


gunked


Mar 16, 2004, 7:56 AM
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Oops...almost forgot, if you bought it at REI.....well.....let's just say it's a defective item as it no longer works and it just happens to cost as much as a new one. Just kidding. :lol: :roll:

-Jason :lol:

Now all you retail boys/girls out there, don't go getting your panties in a bunch. It's not my fault REI stands for Return Every Item. I think I just dropped a ball. Let's see if it rolls!!! :roll:


adamwvt


Mar 16, 2004, 8:18 AM
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For top rope soloing, I use a Petzl Mini Traxion. I have found it to be very smooth and low profile, as well as reliable in catching falls.


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