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blindslap


May 14, 2002, 8:04 PM
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When placing a hex, is it better to have the wire bending away from you, towords you, or does it matter?


stevematthys


May 14, 2002, 8:06 PM
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try to have it bending out of the crack you placed it in. if it looks like it might walk out with rope pull clip it into the rope using a longer runner.


pelliott


May 14, 2002, 8:55 PM
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Wait a second. I thought only cams could walk not hexes.

When you say wire bending away from you or towards you, are you asking whether the cam should be straight or rotated in the crack?

If you are asking whether the cable sling on the hex should be to the side then yes it should. The hex should not be seated with the cable pointing right at you. You need the camming action of a rotated head. (Sounds like a commercial for an electric razor)


stevematthys


May 15, 2002, 2:03 PM
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"walk" was not the right word. i meant move out with rope pull. my bad


fishbait


May 15, 2002, 2:32 PM
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Imagine placing the hex in a horizontal crack. The cables should be pointing at an upward angle. If you fall, the force of the cables pulling down torques the cam and tightens the placement. If the cables were pointing at a downward angle there would be no torque on the hex. It might still hold, but it's this rotational torque that allows a hex to hold at it's best.

Vertical cracks are harder to describe, but the idea is the same. Basically you want the cables to be pointing in the direction opposite the force. If the force is downward, point the cables up. If it's to the right, point the cables to the left...

Happy Hexing...


bradhill


May 15, 2002, 3:17 PM
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Umm, re: fisbait, no you don't want the cables pointing up when placing a hex in a vertical crack. That would roll the hex end-over-end in and possibly out of the crack during a fall. In a vertical crack the cables should be facing down and it doesn't matter much if the hex is in a left-handed or right-handed orientation.


Like so...

Code
  #   _____  # 
# / \ #
# / |#
#| |#
#| |#
#| ^/ #
# \ /| #
# \___/|| #
# || #
# || #
# || #
# || #


If you're really picky, the climber should be on the left of the above pictured hex, so rope drag will be less likely to dislodge the hex, but it matters very little.

[ This Message was edited by: bradhill on 2002-05-15 15:18 ]


dustinap
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May 15, 2002, 3:45 PM
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^
^
^

Good tricam placement


fishbait


May 15, 2002, 3:57 PM
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Hey Brad,

I didn't say to point the cables up in a vertical crack, only in a horizontal crack. I can see where the confusion came from though. It was easier to describe the situation using a horizontal example. If the hex is placed in a vertical crack you're correct that the cables should be pointing down. The left or right orientation of the cables should be that which provides the maximum torque possible. This would vary by placement though.


paintinhaler


May 15, 2002, 4:16 PM
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tricams....use em


sexton


May 15, 2002, 8:43 PM
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I read a lot of questions/comments here about hexes. I think that after you have a double set of cams, your hexes stay in the bottom of the box collecting dust.

I can think of a few, rare placements where a hex would go and a cam wouldn't. But I can think of many, many placements where a hex sucks and a cam is bomber.

I still take a few for walls and the occasional alpine route if I know a belay will take them, but otherwise, I haven't used them free climbing in at least 10 years.

I'm wondering if it's just the younger people trying to save a buck, or if the older folks with plenty of cams actually prefer them. Advocating hexes just sounds like advice coming from people that haven't used or don't have a couple sets of cams.


stevematthys


May 15, 2002, 8:46 PM
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tri-cams are sweet


jumaringjeff


May 16, 2002, 5:53 AM
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Not to mention the fact that hexes are about a third of the cost and a third of the weight of cams....


-jj

[ This Message was edited by: jumaringjeff on 2002-05-16 05:54 ]


sexton


May 16, 2002, 8:41 AM
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Oozingpustle:>And I'll trust a good hex placement over any cam.
>
This is the part I don't get. I'll trust any good piece over any bad piece. A bomber hex is bomber, a bomber cam is bomber. Crap pieces are crap. To argue that a hex is somehow, in general, more secure than a cam is absurd. They are both secure in good placements.

I climbed with hexes for a long time, but over the years they've gotten phased out of use.


traddaddy


May 16, 2002, 10:12 AM
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It is not absurd.
A hex is a static piece. Have you ever seen a cam get yanked and track out of place?
Don't forget how to place your hexes, if you stop using them, when you need em, you'll be fiddling around forever trying to set a bomber one.


sexton


May 17, 2002, 9:44 AM
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Maybe I should ask my question another way. If you have plenty of cams to do a given route, do you leave them behind and take the hexes instead?

Traddaddy wrote:
>A hex is a static piece.
>
So is a cam when it holds. The word you meant to use was passive.

>Have you ever seen a cam get yanked and track out of place?
>
I've seen a couple dozen cams pull out. A bad placement is a bad placement. Of the cams I've seen pull, I can only remember one that was a surprise where I thought it was good. All the others were marginal placements; 2 cam placements, loose/wet/dirty rock/small pockets. Some of these pulled out under body weight. I couldn't even dream of getting a hex in those spots. And if I could, they would be subject to the same wet/lose/dirty conditions that are bad for cams. They probably would have pulled also.

I think you are confusing a piece pulling with 'tracking out'. Tracking out is only a rel concern in soft desert sandstone. In those cases, and on expando flakes, cams just aren't good. Too much force per area. Hexes distribute that force over much greater surface area. But most decent rock in this country will hold a cam.

>Don't forget how to place your hexes, if you stop using them, when you need em, you'll be fiddling around forever trying to set a bomber one.
>
Come on, it's not rocket science. Placing pro is pretty intuitive. Experience teaches what pro is bomber and what is junk, and what piece to grab off the rack. And why would I have to remember how to place them if I don't carry them?

There are certainly a few spots where they work where a cam doesn't. I've done most of my climbing in the West, but I've also climbed at Red River, New River, Gunks, and your beloved Seneca. Only place I found hexes more useful was Looking Glass eyebrows.

Ooze wrote:
>I like it when you give a hex a tug, and it SETS. An SLCD never sets, you always have to worry about it walking and becoming discombobulated.
>
So give the cam a tug. I'd call that 'set'
Walking can be a problem. But of the 80% of cam placements that don't walk, cleaning is a lot easier than banging a hex out.

>In a perfect crack, yeah, a cam is bomber. But where I climb, perfect cracks are rare.
>
You may be in an area where hexes are more useful. By all means use them. I still assert that in most areas, once someone has enough cams to do the job, the hexes gather dust.

> And even so - a cam in a parallel-sided crack is still a little mysterious to me, and you so hear stories of them popping, seemingly for no reason.
>
Ah, so that's it! They seem mysterious and you don't trust them. Well, go climb on them and learn to trust them.

I'm not trying to pick a fight here. I just think that it's bad advice to tell someone to go buy a bunch of hexes that will be unused after that person has gotten serious and bought a set or two of cams. The only advantage of hexes is their price. I started climbing with hexes, but when cams came out, they've gradually replaced all the hexes.

>A well-set hex can't pop. It's a physical imposs.
>
A well-set cam can't pop either. It's a physical imposs.

It sounds like you just don't trust their mysterious ways. You're totally welcome to futz around with a hex. But the rest of the world is going to place a solid cam and move up.

>Tri-cams could possibly replace hexes on my rack, but the larger ones are relatively heavy.>

I like small tri-cams for overnight approaches and weight savings. But for a crag, when I've got a fistful of cams, the hexes are sleeping at home.


radistrad


May 17, 2002, 10:11 AM
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John long has a story about Reeds Direct in Yosemite.
I goes something like climber a leads the pitch gets gripped and falls all of his pro rips out as he falls, amazingly his ropes raps around the tree at the belay and saves him.

I have climbved this pitch three time my self and it takes pro like no one business.

So what went wrong?

JL says that the slings on his pro were wider than the crack and as he loaded each piece they popped from the crack because the pro was loaded to the side and not down, because the slings would not go into the crack.

I'm sure I bungled the story, but I hope I got the point across.

Is anyone else familiar with this story?


natec


May 17, 2002, 10:09 PM
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Sexton must be rich. Or doesn't climb routes that he may have to leave a piece on. If I'm forced to retreat you can be darn sure I'm leaving a hex. This is one key reason to me to bring hexes and tricams with you.


wallhammer


May 18, 2002, 6:43 AM
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ditto beerandblood, have 28 cams, like em and use em. what would i use if both would work in a placement and my life depended on it? hexes baby!


beyond_gravity


May 18, 2002, 8:32 AM
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I've posted a topic like this too, and I found that everyone raves on about hexs being so bomber, but aside from alpine climbs when you have to hammer the gear in because everything is iced up, people only use cams. I dont own any cams, but I've used them. your right, I do trust hexs more. I'd rather have mankey gear and have steam left to finish the climb then have bomber gear and fall.


stevematthys


May 19, 2002, 1:50 PM
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i think tri-cams are pretty bomber if placed correctly


sexton


May 19, 2002, 9:27 PM
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Oozingpustle writes:
>Sexton: You don't get it. So don't try being a smart ass, it only makes you look stupider.
>
How typical. A sincere discussion is initiated to understand why people prefer hexes over cams, and it degrades to name calling when someone can't defend their arguments.

I conceded that cams are lighter, cheaper, and conducive to some particular areas. My interest was in why someone would choose to take a set of hexes over a set of cams in most places. The answers received have essentially been that people trust a good hex placement over a good cam placement.

What I did not do, Ooze, was resort to calling you stupid.

Having started out climbing with hexes nearly 30 (1974) years ago, and switching over almost exclusively to cams in the past 15 or so, I find cams infinitely more useful in most areas.

Having taken quite a few falls onto cams, I can not see the sense in not trusting good placements.

What exactly is it that I don't get which makes me look so stupid?

I can understand the argument of leaving cheap gear behind instead of cams. But I can't understand not trusting a cam placement.

beerandblood wrote:
>I will always take a hex placement over a cam placement. And I have plenty of cams!
>
Thank you for a sincere response. That's exactly what I was wondering; if people really felt that way and why. Having used both for a long time, I've come to a different conclusion, but to each his own.

>Really! It's simple math.
>
Er, tan(theta) Hexes work on torque.
>
Uh, so do cams. Downward force cancels frictional force to give net zero torque for the cam to hold.

>Play around with them and discover what a bomber piece of gear they are.
>
Been there, done that. Like I said, to each his own, but mine are gathering dust and have been for some time.

wallhammer writes:
>ditto beerandblood, have 28 cams, like em and use em. what would i use if both would work in a placement and my life depended on it? hexes baby!>
>
I guess the nature of my question was do you take the hexes and leave the 28 cams at home? Is the extra security you feel from the hex placement worth the decreased number of placements where they are useful? Not for me. I'll forego that perfect 1 in 10 hex placement after running it out because that hex wouldn't fit in the previous 9 placements where a cam would.


traddaddy


May 20, 2002, 5:40 AM
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Sexton writes:

"I conceded that cams are lighter, cheaper, and conducive to some particular areas."

I'll assume you meant hexes.

" My interest was in why someone would choose to take a set of hexes over a set of cams in most places. The answers received have essentially been that people trust a good hex placement over a good cam placement. "

It's not about one over the other. Earlier you said:"Advocating hexes just sounds like advice coming from people that haven't used or don't have a couple sets of cams."

NOT TRUE. Everything has it's place.

"Having taken quite a few falls onto cams, I can not see the sense in not trusting good placements."

I'm not sure where you climb, but get on some Tuscarora sandstone and you'll see the difference.

"I can understand the argument of leaving cheap gear behind instead of cams. But I can't understand not trusting a cam placement."

See above. Where do you climb?


Edited for the proper spelling of Tuscarora



[ This Message was edited by: traddaddy on 2002-05-20 05:59 ]


duskerhu


May 20, 2002, 7:45 AM
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Hey Sexton, I have $20, can I have all those dusty old hexes??? I need a few more...

duskerhu


sexton


May 20, 2002, 5:05 PM
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traddaddy,

I basically agree with your last post. Hexes aren't a substitute for cams and vice versa. Each is a good thing to have in your quiver. Everyone will definitely find placements where a hex is gold and a cam sucks.

My point was that most people in most areas will find a lot more placements where just the opposite is true.

Thanks for the viewpoint. Mine obviously differs, but that's all right.

PS: Done most of my climbing in Yosemite, Josh, Vantage, Index, Red Rocks, southern Utah, Smith, Tetons, and Boulder area. But I've done a fair bit on southern sandstone at T-wall, Chatanooga, Looking Glass, etc.



k9rocko


May 20, 2002, 7:38 PM
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I had better study up on the use of hexes... I am one of those kids that went out and bought a bunch of cams..... because that is what I needed to get a good start.

Of course, a hex will fit where a cam cannot. The shallow pockets will sometimes accept a hex or a Lowe Tri-cam.... but cant effecively hold a TCU, or FCU.

I have started my Hexes by buying one that fits the same size crack as a BD Camalot #3.5 and that is because I couldn't afford more than one Camalot #3.5 (~$90)

From a physics, and cost analysis standpoint... I could easily double the effectiveness of my current rack by picking up a set of hexes...

Thanks guys.

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