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timpanogos


Apr 3, 2004, 5:00 PM
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Worked the choss today – heading. Any suggestions are welcome – I have a few questions:

1. I need some kind of wrist deal to easily tether heading tools to, and safely not drop when moving from rack storage to use. What do you guys do here any cool ideas?

2. I was concerned about the wires, and avoided hits to the center with the same force as hits to the sides of center – after seeing the back sides of the two heads – please tell me if I should work the center harder – getting deforming/flowing with the center, behind wire head.

3. The big head was harder to set than the little dudes. I think it was because it keep powdering the rock and the powder keep it from bonding. It's big and hard. I set that same head 3 times same place before it finally stayed. It had finally "sized itself" – touchy question here – should I just have sculptured this a bit before trying the head – thus saving the head – notice the frayed wires from the multiple beatings – and yet I still did not flow the center back.

4. What do you use for a wire brush, mine sucked.

5. circle heads???? Was this just too desperate? Any clues on these?

Pete, please answer email – all other constructive criticism is way welcome.

Chad

I think this is a #1 head

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29136

Held light aider bounce fine – funkness test did this (with just slightly more than hammer weight dropping on it!)

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29137


This is a #2 head in the same placement after cleaning the #1 dead head
This head tested with fairly aggressive bounce testing

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29138


This is the #2 head funknessed to failure – I would categorize the hammer swing to cause failure as a “firm tap” I was a bit surprised at how easily this wire popped.

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29139


#2 deadhead after cleaning – Notice that the middle part right behind the wire has not been deformed – should I have been more aggressive on pounding the center?

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29140

#4? Head – pretty big one anyway – This needed some cleaning – and then this was the 2nd time this same head was pasted in to the same placement – did not hold even a light bounce the first time – or this time!

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29143


Third time is the charm. I hammered the spread from the other two attempts back over/around the wires and placed it again – aggressive aider bouncing on this was fine. It took several “hard swings” with the funkness to break this guy loose – wire did not break this time, head came out. Notice the frayed wires in the head from so much beating – I was surprised the wires did not fail in the aluminum but that the whole head pulled on super hard funking.

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29144


Like the #2 head – dead center, behind the wire – was hardly deformed, and not flowed.

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29146


I had no luck with circle heads in small marginal places


Circle heads – only had desperate horizontal cracks on this boulder – no luck with these bad boys.

First try, above the little nubbin

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29148

Momentarily held body weight, then popped – so desperate, I could not get the second head to stick (to the right)

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29149


lambone


Apr 3, 2004, 6:21 PM
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In reply to:
2. I was concerned about the wires, and avoided hits to the center with the same force as hits to the sides of center – after seeing the back sides of the two heads – please tell me if I should work the center harder – getting deforming/flowing with the center, behind wire head.

uhhhh, huh :?:

In reply to:
4. What do you use for a wire brush, mine sucked.

A wire brush :?

In reply to:
5. circle heads???? Was this just too desperate? Any clues on these?


uh, you were on the ground right?


-What are you using to paste the head with? Blunt chisel?
-Get a little plastic tubing to blow the dust out of the placement first.
-Suprising to see the cable broke with a light funk. Me thinks a normal bounce test is better. You don't want to go through all the time and trouble of placing a head in what might be the only placement...and then break the cable testing iit. Then you need to clean it and start all over. Plus if you broke the cable then the head was bomber.


timpanogos


Apr 3, 2004, 7:24 PM
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about 10' off the ground on big boulder (yes a no one cares boulder) - on tr

I have the fish head set - blunt chisel, small blunt punch, large blunt punch and sharp chisel.

yes, I know the heads were good I would have jumped on them in a heart beat after the aider tests in real life. I asked on another thread and have pretty much concluded that I will not clean heads I place in real life.

I funked them for 2 reasons;

1. the "body weight only" thread - wanted to get a feel for where they would break (I was surprised at how easily they popped), I don't think I will personally funk test heads (but then I will not be doing a4/5 either) - had to try it however.

2. I wanted to deadhead them and clean them. Even though this is a who cares boulder, I did not what to leave heads all over it.


fwiw

I took the fish small punch and drove it upwards from the bottom of the head - sank it in a ways and pryed out ward - they came out very clean and did not ruin the placement.

edit, why does "out ward" outward turn into SPAM LINK?? painfull


Partner coldclimb


Apr 3, 2004, 7:47 PM
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In reply to:
edit, why does "out ward" SPAM Link turn into SPAM LINK?? painfull

Hah... that was an effort to ban links to www.0utwar.com (with an o, not a zero). I'll bring this up with those in charge so this can be fixed. ;)


timpanogos


Apr 3, 2004, 8:43 PM
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After some “anonymous” input – a couple notes:

1. Head size numbers may vary from different sources – I believe what I called the #1 head here – dang Russ, I lost your paper today – is the one that is only rated to like 220 pounds (and maybe called a #0) and what I called the #2 head is the 500 pounder(#1)??? Away, the funkness generated that 220 pounds pretty darn quick! And even the 500 did not take much at all. What ever the wire numbers, I believe the weights were likely right (220, 500).

2. I think the larger head I used would have been the size of a fish #4. A friend said this about the sculpting question:

“No, I think maybe you should have better shaped the head prior to
placing it. You take the head and lay it against a flat section of
wall, and you hit it with your hammer to flatten it along the
appropriate axis in order to pre-shape it prior to placing it. In an
ideal placement, you will be pre-shaping it into the shape of a nut.“

Problem was, I tried – I beat the heck out of this head – on the face to try and flatten it out a bit to fit the crack – the thing hardly deformed at all. I and to take small areas of this head and smear it out with the tools to start moving it.

My friend was surprised that I the initial set with the pointed end of the hammer, as well as the initial shaping exercise would not do some fairly serious shaping.

Apparently different head makers may use different hardness of aluminum alloy. I do believe this was very hard alloy – that kept “powdering” the rock.

Anyone ran into this before? Who makes a softer alloy head?

3. Caught as total circle head noob here:

“You weenie! That's not a second head, it's a cable swage! Your
circleheads have TWO blobs of metal on them. One is the actual HEAD
that you place, and the other is merely the CABLE SWAGE that you LEAVE
THE HELL ALONE!!!

[sheesh]”

Little safety note there eh?


copperhead


Apr 3, 2004, 11:26 PM
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Now you know why funk testing is lame, no matter how hard/easy the climbing is. Your head sizes appear to be correct, i.e. #1 and #2.

You are dealing with a boulder that is obviously chossy – lichen and weathered granitic rock. Aside from the diorite of North America (etc.) the clean white granite of El Cap will be like stealth rubber compared to your boulder when it comes to the ‘weld factor’ of your head placements. Rotten rock is still prevalent though, so good to be aware of it.

Photos #1 and #2:

See the small fracture on the left side of the placement? I can’t really tell, but you want to watch out for weaknesses like these – I have placed many a head, only to have the side of the placement blowout, making it useless. The more solid the rock, the better the placement (obviously). The fact that you were able to break the cables is a good sign.

Photos #3 and #4:

The bottom of the #2 head could be placed better. As Pete said, you sometimes need to form the head (hammer it against the rock) before you place it. In this case, the head could be placed slightly higher in the slot, enabling you to sink the bottom portion better. I don’t like small punches on #2 heads – a blunt 5/8” chisel and a 1/4" punch work well. Use the punch to keep the surface smooth and the 5/8” chisel to work the sides, top, and X’s (the detail work).

Photo #5:

Yup. Often the back of the head is un-deformed and does not come into contact with rock – depends on the placement, i.e. slot vs. flare.

Photo #6:

Is this the correct orientation of the photo or does it need to be rotated 90^ clockwise? If the orientation is correct, a circlehead would be a wiser choice. Ditto photo #7.

#3 or #4??? Can’t tell. Cleaning? Looks like some pretty aggressive cleaning (rock chunk missing…) but that is kind of the nature of heading on rotten granite – you need to get down to the good stuff. Rock “powdering” will turn your stealth rubber into mayonnaise – your worst enemy when placing heads. There is a difference between cleaning and enhancing/chiseling (though it may vary from climber to climber…) and use of the rock in its natural state is encouraged (absolutely on existing routes). A steel wire brush (about the size of a tooth brush or slightly larger) and a blow tube are required for any serious heading, especially when dealing with the fresh. A knifeblade piton is also useful for preliminary cleaning of cracks – the small weathered granules that clog the crack in the first four photos can sometimes be removed with a light scraping of the crack with the tip of a blade. Make sure that the placement is clean before you place the head!!!!!!! We’re talking adhesion here – peel the backing off a sticker, drop it in the dirt, and then see how well it sticks to your bumper…

The edges of the head are curling back – use a 5/8” chisel to weld the sides flush.

Photo #7:

Looks better on the sides but could still use a little more work. You must be a sculptor of metal, a welder of the malleable, a sticker to the stone.

Photo #8:

WTF? I am confused. Orientation? The head (if placed as shown) is too big for the placement. I see this a lot on trade routes. Better to sink it than to paste it (except #1s - place a #2 if possible).

Instead of busting off the edge of the corner, try a smaller head and sink it.

Photo #9:

Ummm… where’s the circlehead? The nubbin below the crack looks suspicious… might break off.

Circleheads – usually just as good as regular heads but are stronger (cable-wise) because of the equalized cable design. Straight-up/roof placements are weaker than straight-in/vertical face placements, regardless of circle or regular head – a nut placement works better than glue (or stealth…).

Photo #10:

Again, you are dealing with a nubbin – weak/bad placement. In this photo, it looks as though the head is held in by the nubbin and the sides are not in contact with rock. Heads should be placed into a depression – a slot with a concave rim is stronger than a constriction between an edge and a few protruding crystals. Surface jive isn’t always strong – beware.



So, in conical illusion…


Don’t hesitate to wail the piss out of ‘em but don’t thin out the metal too much (see my #2 head, etc. thread…). Place the support cable side of the head towards the back of the placement and the ‘cable end’ side out ward (misspelled to avoid SL Jive...???). This will help to prevent the cable from pulling out of the welded sleeve. Wail on the entire surface of the head. As the old A5 catalogs and Big Wall Tech Manual once said… Place, X-em, Paste-em, Rock-em, and Sniff-em. If it stinks, get off it! Variations to the sequence are acceptable.

(Side note: Anyone have copies of the original A5 catalogs? (catalog #1 = 1988) They’re the schist, for sure!)

Always be careful when placing heads!! DO NOT damage the cable with your placing tools! If you do, clean it and start over with another head.

Umm, as for leaving them fixed, I’d say clean ‘em if you can but don’t destroy the placement. If they are mega-super-welded then it’s best to leave ‘em fixed. Rotten fixed heads are your worst nightmare. Never trust rotten fixed heads – clean ‘em and place a new one. Your ‘impale and pry’ method of cleaning deadheads works well with a sharpened or small diameter punch (beware of thin, constant diameter punches – they will bend and break). Sometimes a chisel-tip punch or special, modified scrape-pry tool is necessary to clean the remains of the deadhead.

Aluminum is more malleable than copper but copper is more durable. I rarely, if ever, re-use a head (place it twice), but then again, I have an unlimited supply… As for your question about variations in malleability (hardness) of different alumiheads… never heard of it. Amount of elbow grease required to properly place a head is directly (but not always) proportional to the size of the head - #4s are a pain…

Yeah, wrist-loops on chisels are the ticket - don't know why Russ/FISH doesn't make 'em that way.


Keep practicing but be nice to the rock!!!

Ok, you owe me how ever many beers it took to write that… (either copperhead drinks fast or types slow – you decide). :P
(just kidding)


lambone


Apr 3, 2004, 11:41 PM
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Thanks C-Head, I owe you more than 1 beer for sure :) Good info :!:


copperhead


Apr 3, 2004, 11:46 PM
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Uh, oh... You caught me on my edits...! There is no end...

Cheers Matt!


timpanogos


Apr 4, 2004, 12:45 AM
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In reply to:
Now you know why funk testing is lame, no matter how hard/easy the climbing is.


To me, yes.


In reply to:
You are dealing with a boulder that is obviously chossy – lichen and weathered granitic rock.


Did not want to get beetch slapped by all the boulder dudes. It was nice to be doing kind of a worse case type of deal.



Photos #1 and #2:

In reply to:
See the small fracture on the left side of the placement?

Who is that masked man? Good eye – never even noticed – got lucky on that one holding


Photo #6:

In reply to:
Is this the correct orientation of the photo or does it need to be rotated 90^ clockwise?
Yes on the rotate – this was a downward pull

In reply to:
Cleaning? Looks like some pretty aggressive cleaning (rock chunk missing…)
. First time I pounded it in – it powdered that part, minimal body weight pulled it – cleaned out the powdered, pasted the first picture again. Same thing, body weight pulled, cleaned all the powder out again, and the 3rd time actually held – only “cleaning” I did was with the brush and to blow away the crushed rock.

In reply to:
There is a difference between cleaning and enhancing/chiseling

Excellent observation – in this case, I might as well have “powdered” the outer rotten stuff. The stuff over on peeler is solid stuff – would not have powdered like this. Your note on the KB, in this case, I likely should have pounded fairly aggressively on the kb and then blown it out well. Excellent on the kb suggestions!

In reply to:
A steel wire brush

Thanks again, I would have looked for the tooth brush brass type – I had a bigger soft brass one – did not dig in well. I’ll search for a hard steel one!

Photo #7:

In reply to:
Looks better on the sides but could still use a little more work. You must be a sculptor of metal, a welder of the malleable, a sticker to the stone.
My poor head was about done by now – I think it was getting brittle after the 3rd time being betting in there

In reply to:
Photo #8: WTF? I am confused. Orientation? The head (if placed as shown) is too big for the placement. I see this a lot on trade routes. Better to sink it than to paste it (except #1s - place a #2 if possible).

This is the exact same placement as the previous two pictures – I had just beat that head out with very hard downward funkness hits – it took about 5 very hard hits to pop the head. I flipped it over and held it by the placement to show that the back side still did not deform much (like other two, apparently not a problem as it was a bomber hold). I believe Russ rates that cable to like 1800 or 2000 some odd pounds – I would not have expected the cable to break – but I was very surprised that the wires did not pull from the head – after all the abuse I gave that poor head.


In reply to:
Instead of busting off the edge of the corner, try a smaller head and sink it.


Based on all the “powdering” excellent observation – the head was too big.

Photo #9:

In reply to:
Ummm… where’s the circlehead? The nubbin below the crack looks suspicious… might break off.

This was a DESPERATE horizontal attempt – this boulder did not have other options – tried it for the hell of it. The nubbin looked like the best bet – picture is after I cleaned it up, but before placing.


In reply to:
Ok, you owe me how ever many beers it took to write that… (either copperhead drinks fast or types slow – you decide).


That was worth a six pack to me – thanks Bryan!

Can I include the price of a 6 pack in a head order – even though you are retired? The ranch calls for a bunch of em.

Excellent information – thanks Bryan!

Chad


russwalling


Apr 5, 2004, 11:35 AM
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**Yeah, wrist-loops on chisels are the ticket - don't know why Russ/FISH doesn't make 'em that way.**

'Cause I clip them into my daisy chain along with the head I'm pasting. Head in the end loop, chisel in a loop just back from it.... I don't like stuff on/over my wrist, and the wrist loops hang up on your gloves, and if you are doing miles of heads you don't have to take the thing off your wrist each time.... just leave one or two on the daisy.


timpanogos


Apr 5, 2004, 1:25 PM
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Good point Russ - I have adjustable daisies, so this might not work so well there, but I do have two dedicated tethers on my chest harness, I'll try this next time - 2 tools each side.

I did notice having all 3 hanging and 1 working, also tended to get heavy, so even a dedicated wrist deal would want/need a way to put the tool or two that you were most interested in on it at a given time.


glockaroo


Apr 5, 2004, 5:43 PM
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In reply to:
...As the old A5 catalogs and Big Wall Tech Manual once said… Place, X-em, Paste-em, Rock-em, and Sniff-em. If it stinks, get off it! Variations to the sequence are acceptable.

(Side note: Anyone have copies of the original A5 catalogs? (catalog #1 = 1988) They’re the schist, for sure!)

Kewl, I learned to place heads based on the old tech manual. Still got a couple copies laying around somewhere. Remember the drawings of the bald dude cleaning a pitch w/ tons o' air under his heels & wearing a fully loaded A5 rack?

I don't like to put my hands thru loops when heading. I just clip the pasting tool to a light tether running to a daisy or aider or something. Just don't make this tether too long, or it will become a lethal flail during a clanging lead fall, as will your hammer if you let it dangle at your ankles on sketchy pitches.


timpanogos


Apr 5, 2004, 7:48 PM
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nice tip on the hammer! Dang, I tend to only hang the dude up first time I trip on it at the belay - I'll watch that now

Chad


Partner coylec


Apr 5, 2004, 8:10 PM
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Another post for my list of extremely useful links. This is quality -- thanks ya'll!

coylec

ps - i'll buy anyone a round for this kind of quality!


timpanogos


Apr 6, 2004, 8:29 PM
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Now for occasional heading – there’s the biggy sized brass tooth brush


http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29351

However, when your gear list calls for 30 heads – you find out what those “other loops” are on your shield harness …. Holster this baby up!

The man’s WSR hugey sized steel tooth brush

http://www.rockclimbing.com/...p.cgi?Detailed=29352

Cut that baby in half to make two!

found it at home base in the paint department


bigwalling


Apr 7, 2004, 11:32 AM
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That first one is not a good brush for heading! It will fall apart very fast. Look for a brush with a plastic handle. I think car detailing shops have some good ones. Not sure where I got mine.


timpanogos


Apr 7, 2004, 1:06 PM
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Yea, I need to look around a bit more - I found out the brass ones will not hold up - and that paint was was a bit too big.

just having some fun!

I'd like to find a steel one the size of the brass one -- I'll check out the car detailer deal - thanks

Chad


copperhead


Apr 9, 2004, 11:08 AM
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Chad, you changed photos #6 and #7 so my previous comments are now a little off…

The orientation of the photos looks much better now but I’m not sure if they are the same photos. Anyways, the #4 alumihead in photo #6 looks like it is too big for the slot – you can either pre-flatten it (not too much…) or use a #3 head. (Side note: #2 alumiheads are slightly larger in size than #2 copperheads.) From the photo, it looks as though your chisel impacts are aimed more at the left wall, rather than straight into the crack/slot. The left side of the head is thinned out against the left wall and the aluminum is curling back. You want to keep as much of the metal in the slot as you can. Flaring placements may require thinning of the metal but not in the case above. Heads don’t stick to flat surfaces; you need to utilize some sort of a constriction. Tight corners often require you to place the chisel or punch parallel to (against) the face of the rock (left wall in this case) and hold it with your fingertips; this isn’t always as easy but you are able to better direct the impacts. Try not to smash the rock (or your fingers) with your hammer; accuracy counts.

Photo #7: This one looks like a hack job, or you placed the same head too many times. This would fall under the category of over-placed. The chisel marks look like your chisel may be cutting into the head more than pressing it smoothly. The surface should be smooth and lack small tears and separated fragments. A 5/16” round punch is good for keeping the surfaces of #3 and #4 heads smooth.

Forget the wooden brushes and go with the plastic-handled ones. I use the black ones that you can find at most hardware stores or like Bigwalling said, at auto parts stores. They are usually around $2 or less apiece. Pick up a few in case you drop one or just wear it out (it is possible…). Tie a clip-in loop to the end of the brush and un-clip it for each use. Don’t drop it! Long leashes are a pain and cause clusterFs in no time. I keep a blowtube on a ~short leash (+/- 18" - 24”) and wrenches for bolting but that’s about it. I clip the end of the blowtube leash to a biner on the front clip-in loop of my A5 gear sling/chest harness. The wire brush is also clipped to this same biner – orient biner with gate outward and opening at bottom.



Russ, I prefer to have chisels and punches on my left wrist – basically the same setup as a hand drill. For “miles of heads”, I just leave the chisel on my wrist; it doesn’t seem to bother me much unless I am free climbing. Sometimes, I will have two or three chisels and punches on my wrist at a time, depending on the nature of the welding. Whatever works.


copperhead


Apr 9, 2004, 11:28 AM
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Re: Pasting – constructive criticism welcome (on pasting ple [In reply to]
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Oh, I forgot...


In reply to:
Your note on the KB, in this case, I likely should have pounded fairly aggressively on the kb and then blown it out well. Excellent on the kb suggestions!


Ummm… The blade is meant to be used by hand, not with a hammer. When you start swinging a hammer to clean out a placement, you enter the gray area between cleaning and enhancing. Be aware of this.


timpanogos


Apr 9, 2004, 3:28 PM
Post #20 of 20 (3065 views)
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Registered: May 17, 2002
Posts: 935

Re: Pasting – constructive criticism welcome (on pasting ple [In reply to]
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Chad, you changed photos #6 and #7 so my previous comments are now a little off… The orientation of the photos looks much better now but I’m not sure if they are the same photos.

Yes same pictures, simply rotated 90 – sorry about that.

In reply to:
Photo #7: This one looks like a hack job, or you placed the same head too many times. This would fall under the category of over-placed.

Yea, 3rd time I placed the same head in the same spot – I was determined to stick it this time!


In reply to:
The chisel marks look like your chisel may be cutting into the head more than pressing it smoothly. The surface should be smooth and lack small tears and separated fragments.

I think the metal was major fatigued at this point and became brittle – I had beat it in, popped it and pounded it somewhat back into a circle (2 times) and set it three – it was a good lesson on seeing what the metal does after too many beatings

In reply to:
A 5/16” round punch is good for keeping the surfaces of #3 and #4 heads smooth.

Like you mentioned above – my blunt chisel may be a bit too sharp for the large heads and the large blunt punch might also too small for these.


also, yes I unstood on the kb by hand and the fine line - the crumbling of this rock along with the planton type stuff growing in it may have merited a bit of a pin hammering - in this case, a couple of wacks with a larger la may have powered the weak stuff, and the head would have stuck first (or second) time.

I will go easy on this - this was an extreme case (look at crack above and below - it's loaded with crap.

Thanks Bryan more excellent info

Chad


Forums : Climbing Disciplines : Big Wall and Aid Climbing

 


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