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General Climbing Discussion

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(K)not on my anchor
7:44:38 PM
On page 45 of the latest rock in the 'tipz' section they show a method for tying off an equalised anchor that loops the strands of the sling through the biner as compared to tying an overhand knot in them. I have never seen this before, nor can I find any information on it. Does anyone use it and have some information (fact based) on its reliability???


2:12:59 PM
I don't like it, and don't think they should have included it. Tying a knot means that one thread in the cordalette can be severed without causing a total failure of the anchor. With the method shown in Rock, if one thread gets severed, the entire anchor can fail.

It's also useless for equalising an anchor you're going to bring a second up on, because you don't have a powerpoint for them to clip into once they arrive.

All in all, NOT an improvement!

1:21:41 PM
Great issue of Rock that one (No 59) ... the one with Steve Monks freeing Lord Gumtree / Holden Caulfield variant on the cover.

Question relates to a cordalette style setup but instead of knotting it they have girth-hitched the loops to a locking krab. The article also mentions the possible use of a fig-8 in this application instead of a locking krab.

>Does anyone use it and have some information (fact based) on its reliability???

Originally I thought manacubus's reply summed it up pretty well, however I have thought further on the subject.
In relation to strength of a girth hitch, (see thread link)
it could work OK.
There have been times when the cordalette I was using was rendered very short by the tying of the knot. On one occasion this had the undesirable consequence of changing (widening) the angle of loops/forces on spaced pro. at the time ~> (k)not good !, due to way-increased potential force on individual pro. pieces if loaded! The suggested arrangement would have been an improvement on that belay.

The best application for the suggested 'tipz' as I see it, is within a complicated anchor setup where perhaps a number of pro pieces are equalised as 'one placement' within the components of the greater cordalette matrix.
This would have the redundancy manacubus desires and still allow having a powerpoint also.

As an aside, I doubt there are many climbers out there who have never clipped krab to krab at some time, even though this may involve cross-loading of gates and other leverage forces.
The 2nd could clip into the krab in-use in this fashion if needed. I know at hanging (aid)-belays on multipitch (especially involving hauling) that krab-chains can often arise and these are not necessarily dangerous depending upon how they are used.

Educated discretion would sum up its usage IMO.

Rat Man
11:36:22 PM
I played with the figure 8/ girth(larks foot, cats paw)hitch thing for a little while. you thread the loops of the cordelette up on the figure 8 like you would rap on it. It equalises really easily and then flip the cords on the neck of the 8 over to make the girth hitch. Stopped doing it because a) didn't want to carry an 8 and a belay device. b) some figure 8 devices aren't rated for a load across the two eyes (used traditionally they would just slip under high load). and c) under load, if a piece comes out (oops) it can creep a little.

So have resumed with the conventional cordelette system.

Note: I think Simey showed me that about 8 years ago.

3:16:00 PM
I have used a simillar system. However at first I was useing the cordelette with no hitches or knot in the end. Foolish as any strand cut will cause total failure.

The main advantage off that system is that it can equalise to any angle just by pulling on the biner. Very handy but not so safe.

I now use either the same system with the overhand knot.

Or if I suspect some need to change equalisation I tie clove hitch's in the cord to each biner on the pro and clip a biner in the main loops of the cord. That way you can adjust the equalisation and the clove hitche's should hold if another strand is cut.

Is that an apropriate method??

11:17:13 AM
>Is that an apropriate method??

I would have thought that clove hitching 3 (or more?) pieces at the 'top end' of the cordalette loops would have negated the speedy convenience of simply tying the power-point knot in the other end of the combined loops; ie one of the main benefits (speed of setup), of the cordalette system is minimised by your action.

You indicate (by inference?) that if the angle of loading changes the cordalette will adapt because you have not tied the bottom loops as one knot, but with the clove hitches in the tops of those loops I suggest that it will NOT adapt any better than if a power-point is used.
This is one of the few dis-benefits of a cordalette setup, in that it is not a true equalising system for other than a single load direction which is set when the strands are tensioned before tying the power-point. If the load subsequently comes on it from any other direction it will load up one piece more than another within the combined matrix.

The only benefit I see in doing it with clove hitches is that the system could be fine-tuned somewhat for a new load direction while still in use. This could be a good thing if multipitching and the next pitch takes off in a different direction to the last.

1:37:25 PM
>You indicate (by inference?) that if the angle of loading changes the
>cordalette will adapt because you have not tied the bottom loops as one
>knot, but with the clove hitches in the tops of those loops

Nope not indicating that at all

>The only benefit I see in doing it with clove hitches is that the system
>could be fine-tuned somewhat for a new load direction while still in use.
>This could be a good thing if multipitching and the next pitch takes off
>in a different direction to the last.

Thats the idea

2:03:48 PM
Slight change of thread direction ...

Who has had / or know of (as opposed to heard anecdotally), a cordalette setup failure (partial or otherwise)?
If yes; What was the reason?, and how could it have been avoided?

I have had components within some that have turned fairly ordinary, but I have not yet lost more than one (limb) out of (at least) a three piece matrix, and then only on one occasion.
The problem with that belay was a combination of a poor cam placement and too wide an angle (cordalette limb) running to it, as compared to the remaining two solid pieces that were more closely aligned. It flared/walked such that the widest 'limb' went slack.

On another more recent belay the main piece I had for the upward load fell out of its position. It was an excellent (upward) placement for a large stopper, but it was hard to tension everything such that it would stay put in the (flaring beneath it) crack. Even though I had slings tied off fairly taught, I ended up putting a short length of shock-cord into the system to keep it snug. This was a critical piece in that belay as I was rope-soloing and it had to be 'bomber' for the upward load.

On some other belays I have had some time consuming sketchyness of (thin-pro) pieces happening when they were complicated and having to set equalised components to comprise one placement within the matrix, ... but the end results have held up well.

Truth is (in my experience), most of my belays have never really been tested severely by a hard FF leader fall; & I hope it stays that way!

6:41:29 PM
How a bout a pre made type thingo

10:59:23 AM
I noticed the blurb accompanying it said:
"While designed as a self-adjusting system, it can set as non-extending by clove-hitching at each protection point"

... interesting that they advocate this with a spectra style tape! ~ slippage factor??

Also interesting that they mention extending the system if necessary with runners/draws. If you were carrying them why not simply use them instead? A simple sling can adequately be turned into a self adjusting arrangement also!

The convenience of the item would appeal to some, but I would be concerned about the extension issue when an uninformed user not being aware of the potential shock loading, uses it without the clove hitches.

IMO 1m is definitely too short, and the 2m would be barely adequate unless you frequent granite cracks?

For my money I will stick with my longer old fashioned style cordalette.

Since you started the thread ... what are your thoughts bordo?

5:36:56 PM
theres also a product out ther called web-o-lete. Its a scam! All it is is a large sling tied like a cordelete!

7:56:57 PM
Apparently cordalettes aren't as common overseas as (they seem to be) here, which might explain the introduction of the web-o-lette as a "why didn't I think of that?" piece of gear. (In particular, a guy I met in the UK told me that "most UK climbers don't need stuff like that.")

But then, he was a total arsehat. So I willingly concede that he could have been wrong.

9:26:48 PM
He was full of sh!te, heaps of climbers over here use cordalettes! In fact, IMO people rely on slings/cord too much nowadays and should brush up on their SRT style belays!


9:12:19 AM
On 2/08/2005 Hatman wrote:
>theres also a product out ther called web-o-lete. Its a scam! All it is
>is a large sling tied like a cordelete!

I have heard these referred to as 'snake runners' due to not being a continuous loop sling but having a sewn 'eye' at each end. If used with a clove hitch on the centre piece of pro then no extension would occur due to the eyes being a bar-tacked item.

There are other thread/s on this topic.


See JC link below ...
jiminy cricket
9:22:59 AM
On 2/08/2005 Hatman wrote:
>theres also a product out ther called web-o-lete. Its a scam! All it is
>is a large sling tied like a cordelete!

How so, Hatman? As M8 points out, they have a sewn loop at each end, so they only need to be 2/3 as long as a cordelette tied in a loop.

see also


9:56:22 AM
so you would pay extra for this??
jiminy cricket
10:24:52 AM
On 4/08/2005 hatman wrote:
>so you would pay extra for this??

I see your point, however I'm not sure that they would be significantly different in price. I haven't seen the same company selling both, but on the Rock Hardware site a 2.4m dyneema sling (DMM) is $39, while a 2.5m dyneema web-o-lette (vertical) is $33. They seem to be a similar price (as you would expect being the same length of the same material) but the web-o-lette functions such that you can extend it significantly further in the setup in question. Better value for money for the given application? You would have to buy a 3.6m sling to get the equivalent function as a 2.4m web-o-lette.


12:41:31 PM
I see, my mistake I didnt relaise it wasn't a continuous sling.

Still you would expect a bit more for something with a great name like that.

A product I would like to see is something that prevents the mass of slings on your gear loops snaging on everything.

I had a very embarising moment when I got snaged and had to downclimb the crux while trying to detangle my slings from a blackberry bush.

4:47:11 PM
Sounds like the crux of that climb was at the start, though I do recall coming across some blackberries about half way up a pitch once in the Warrumbungles.

Sorting aid-rack clusterflubs makes normal
>'mass of slings on your gear loops snaging' (sic)
often seem like a picnic by comparison.

... Interesting that bordo is conspicuous by his absence on his thread, even though he has logged in often enough while it has been up & running again.

6:22:20 PM
why don't u just buy a length of sling and tie figure eights in the ends.. same result, heaps cheaper

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