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A book on dynamic belay
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drbeagle


Sep 3, 2004, 8:53 AM
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A book on dynamic belay
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Dynamic belaying is a hot top here on rc.com but I haven't found a book by a respected author that mentions it.

John Long's How to Rock Climb 3rd Edition mentions it once but he says that it is used in misguided attempts to help soften a fall and is not neccesary with a modern rope.

While I agree that it is not nesscary to dynamic belay to soften the vertical fall, I feel it is useful to lessen the horizontal impacts of the pendulum effect on vertical or overhanging rock.

Anyone know of any books that support or discount various opinions on dynamic belaying?

Thanks


jt512


Sep 3, 2004, 9:21 AM
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Re: A book on dynamic belay [In reply to]
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In reply to:
Dynamic belaying is a hot top here on rc.com but I haven't found a book by a respected author that mentions it.

John Long's How to Rock Climb 3rd Edition mentions it once but he says that it is used in misguided attempts to help soften a fall and is not neccesary with a modern rope.

While I agree that it is not nesscary to dynamic belay to soften the vertical fall, I feel it is useful to lessen the horizontal impacts of the pendulum effect on vertical or overhanging rock.

Anyone know of any books that support or discount various opinions on dynamic belaying?

Thanks

Many newer climbing books briefly describe dynamic belaying, but none that I know of give it sufficient emphasis. The best treatment of the subject anywere, as far as I know, is the post on this website by tenn_dawg (which I can't find at the moment, since the search function isn't working at all). It is for more advanced topics like this that the Internet really shines.

-Jay


overlord


Sep 3, 2004, 9:47 AM
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Re: A book on dynamic belay [In reply to]
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yes, tenndawg really made an excellent post about it.

well, it DOES have its uses, even with a dynamic rope.


Partner rgold


Sep 3, 2004, 9:56 AM
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Re: A book on dynamic belay [In reply to]
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First of all, "dynamic belay" has recently acquired a new meaning, to wit, a technique that requires the belayer to jump just as the load is received. It used to mean the application of controlled slippage of the rope. I don't think anyone has written about the original technique since the sixties, although you can find posts by Chris Harmston in the rec.climbing archives advocating (original style) dynamic belays and describing equipment breakage when they are not used.

The prime resource for the dynamic belay is an 85 page pamphlet entitled Belaying the Leader: An Omnibus on Climbing Safety by Richard M. Leonard, Arnold Wexler, William Siri, Charles Wilts, David Brower, MOrgan Harris, and May Pridham, published by the Sierra Club in 1956 and long out of print. The bookseller Arthur H. Clark Co. in Spokane, Washington has a used one for $9.00.

These guys worked out a formula for the amount of controlled rope slippage needed to keep forces within prescribed limits and advocated belay practice sessions to learn the technique. Some years later, in an article in Summit magazine, it was suggested after some testing that even those who had practiced a lot could not reliably keep the forces down with a dynamic belay, and rope manufacturers responded by designing ropes whose elastic properties were specifically tailored to keeping rope tensions within 12 kN (now generally below 9 kN), a figure which, I think, was somehow arrived at by the U.S. Army as the maximum healthy young parachutests could withstand.

The new climbing ropes were supposed to have eliminated the need for dynamic belays; at least voluntarily initiated ones, but people have begun to realize once again that the technique may be valuable for reducing loads on trad protection, preventing the ankle-breaking injuries caused by short sport-climbing falls on overhanging rock, and preserving the integrity of snow and ice anchors involved in catching a leader fall.


korporal


Sep 3, 2004, 10:41 AM
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Re: A book on dynamic belay [In reply to]
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This is Tenn-Dawgs post on dynamic belays and the disscussion that followed.


drbeagle


Sep 5, 2004, 11:57 PM
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I'm surprised none of the books out there cover it. Hopefully someone will do some analysis (non-technical analysis that is) and publish it. It seems like something John Long could do in an update to one of his falcon guide how to climb series books.


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