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Chockstone Forum - Crag & Route Beta

Crag & Route Beta

Area Location Sub Location Crag Links
VIC Arapiles The Watchtower Faces (General) Right Watchtower Face [ Arapiles Guide | Arapiles Images ] 

Author
Cams for Watchtower faces
Rawpowa!
19-Apr-2016
10:53:17 AM
Hi I was planning on doing some of the Watchtower face climbs in a couple of weeks and had heard that small cams (or tri cams) are helpful. I wanted to get some X4s 0.2 - 0.4 and was wondering how useful they'd be? I'll probably get a set eventually but I'm a got some other things to buy like a new coffee machine etc. which may be more essential for this trip. I have Camalots 0.3 - 4 at the moment.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
19-Apr-2016
11:03:43 AM
On 19/04/2016 Rawpowa! wrote:
>Hi I was planning on doing some of the Watchtower face climbs in a couple
>of weeks and had heard that small cams (or tri cams) are helpful. I wanted
>to get some X4s 0.2 - 0.4 and was wondering how useful they'd be? I'll
>probably get a set eventually but I'm a got some other things to buy like
>a new coffee machine etc. which may be more essential for this trip. I
>have Camalots 0.3 - 4 at the moment.

I can see it now...
New breeds of rock climbing protection...
Like coffeecentrics, or camacoffees - dual purpose, multifunctional-
When you need a caffeine hit, don't run it out!
Heh, heh, heh.

Oh, and to answer your question, I find tri-cams lighter, cheaper, and very versatile (stronger in some situations), compared to equivalent range cams.
Rawpowa!
19-Apr-2016
11:35:57 AM
No coffee = No climb. There's no way I could go camping for a fortnight on substandard coffee, my current moka machine is not up to it.

I thought about tri cams but I think I'll find the X4s more versatile for other climbs. And I don't know how to place them. But anyway what size tri cams would you recommend for the watchtower face climbs?
gfdonc
19-Apr-2016
11:52:51 AM
I think the answer depends on which climbs you're planning on doing.
2 or 3 finger-sized cams are handy on Brolga. Now's the time to point out that finger-sized might refer to the x or y directions. I mean both. Friend 00 to green or maybe yellow Alien in my case.
Skink is easily done with a standard rack, including a set of wires. Take a bolt plate.
Auto Da Fe needs some small wires and doubles of cams in the small-medium range.
The Confession has basically no gear up the corner, so it doesn't matter what you carry.

peteclimbs
19-Apr-2016
12:04:10 PM
I love my X4s and I've certainly used the smaller ones on some of the watchtower face climbs. I have red (smallest) through to grey but find myself using the smaller sizes (red, yellow,blue) most. Above grey I cut over to C4 purple.

Depending on what you climb some RPs might be handy too - I climbed Auto Da Fe without them and it made protecting some of the trickier bits quite...err....tricky!
Rawpowa!
19-Apr-2016
12:19:33 PM
On 19/04/2016 gfdonc wrote:
>I think the answer depends on which climbs you're planning on doing.
>2 or 3 finger-sized cams are handy on Brolga. Now's the time to point
>out that finger-sized might refer to the x or y directions. I mean both.
> Friend 00 to green or maybe yellow Alien in my case.
>Skink is easily done with a standard rack, including a set of wires.
>Take a bolt plate.
>Auto Da Fe needs some small wires and doubles of cams in the small-medium
>range.
>The Confession has basically no gear up the corner, so it doesn't matter
>what you carry.
>
>

Brolga was the main one I was worried about. I'll work up to Auto Da Fe I think! I assume 0.3-0.4 would be finger size?


On 19/04/2016 peteclimbs wrote:
>I love my X4s and I've certainly used the smaller ones on some of the watchtower
>face climbs. I have red (smallest) through to grey but find myself using
>the smaller sizes (red, yellow,blue) most. Above grey I cut over to C4
>purple.
>
>Depending on what you climb some RPs might be handy too - I climbed Auto
>Da Fe without them and it made protecting some of the trickier bits quite...err....tricky!

Thanks, that's very handy to know! I've got some IMPs but I think I'll be just practicising placing them this trip rather than doing climbs where I'm relying on them :)
johnpitcairn
19-Apr-2016
12:43:21 PM
Depends how narrow/weird the placement is. C4 head width is pretty wide.

Brolga and Mantle I think we used pink and maybe red tri-cams, blue/green/yellow totem basics (ie aliens, approx 0.2 thru 0.4) and C4 0.5 thru 2 or 3 in the horizontals. The totems are nice in that the head is narrow and metal a bit softer so they tend to stick in place well. Cammed hexes (DMM torque nuts) can also work surprisingly well in the larger horizontals ;-)

The tri-cams will often go into weird/flared/shallow/narrow pockets where a cam won't stay in so well or where the oval shape may bend cam lobes if you fall. If I had a smaller (black) tricam it would have been useful too. Tri-cams are pretty easy to place, but your second will need to understand how to remove them or be in for a lot of frustration. You can certainly get away without them, but a pink may be fun to have and play with.

RPs (or DMM IMPs and brass offsets) are always useful, often opposed in tapering horizontal seams.

Skink doesn't need much in the way of very small gear from memory.
johnpitcairn
19-Apr-2016
12:52:28 PM
For tri-cams in the face pockets, sometimes you will need to use the pocket as a finger hold, move up, then place the tri-cam when your fingers are out of the hold ;-)
Rawpowa!
19-Apr-2016
1:26:47 PM
Thanks John.
gfdonc
19-Apr-2016
2:00:40 PM
Tip for Brolga, the ledge at the end of pitch one is a bit flared so you need to hang onto a medium cam or two.
Can't remember the size exactly (and I don't use camalots) but say 2-fingers wide.

Zarb
19-Apr-2016
3:13:53 PM
On 19/04/2016 Rawpowa! wrote:

>I thought about tri cams but I think I'll find the X4s more versatile
>for other climbs.

Blaspheme. There is nothing more versatile than tri cams.

Drake
20-Apr-2016
8:29:14 AM
Hey Rawpowa,

Tricams are the bees-knees in some rock types like solution pockets in granite, and they work particularly well at araps. Tricams aren't the best in bluies sandstone though, as the soft rock and the single point of contact on the tricam spur don't mix well. I see that you're based in Sydney, so I think you'll get more value/mileage etc out of the X4s. I love tricams and I carried a lot of them all over the bluies before realizing that I hadn't placed one in years. X4's are great.
Rawpowa!
20-Apr-2016
8:50:19 AM
On 20/04/2016 Drake wrote:
>Hey Rawpowa,
>
>Tricams are the bees-knees in some rock types like solution pockets in
>granite, and they work particularly well at araps. Tricams aren't the best
>in bluies sandstone though, as the soft rock and the single point of contact
>on the tricam spur don't mix well. I see that you're based in Sydney, so
>I think you'll get more value/mileage etc out of the X4s. I love tricams
>and I carried a lot of them all over the bluies before realizing that I
>hadn't placed one in years. X4's are great.

Yes I think I'll get more use out of the X4s, and I also don't know how to place tri cams so I probably want to stick to what I know :) I will probably end up getting some eventually but I think some hexs are next on the list.
But thanks for the replys Zarb and Gfcdonc, I'll try to keep a large cam for the belay.
Ariel
20-Apr-2016
9:07:35 AM
I take my X4s up every climb in Araps and the Gramps, and it's rare that I don't put use my .1 and .3. They're not strictly necessary most of the time, but I find they're perfect sizes that'll go pretty much anywhere for when I don't want to think too much or nothing else is possible.

I'd absolutely take a .1, .2 and .3 up Skink. They'll save you from having to run out any of the harder bits and from trusting too much in that piton.

For Watchtower Crack, I don't think there's any microcam placements. Maybe one or two on the slab down low, but they're pretty rubbish and it's easy enough anyway. Try to borrow a 4 and 5 though.
gfdonc
20-Apr-2016
1:22:40 PM
On 20/04/2016 Rawpowa! wrote:
>But thanks for the replys Zarb and Gfcdonc, I'll try to keep a large cam
>for the belay.

So so we're not confused, it's a medium size, not large. Large relative to your microcams, yes. red or gold I think.
Rawpowa!
20-Apr-2016
3:49:47 PM
On 20/04/2016 gfdonc wrote:
>On 20/04/2016 Rawpowa! wrote:
>>But thanks for the replys Zarb and Gfcdonc, I'll try to keep a large
>cam
>>for the belay.
>
>So so we're not confused, it's a medium size, not large. Large relative
>to your microcams, yes. red or gold I think.
>

Right, I'll just take all my cams I think :) Maybe leave the 4 at home.
Dave_S
20-Apr-2016
5:27:07 PM
From what I recall, there might have actually been a #4 placement on Brolga! At least I definitely remember being surprised to get a fist jam in at one point...

But I'm also sure it's unnecessary and would just be more weight to carry.
rolsen1
22-Apr-2016
7:27:45 PM
On 20/04/2016 Rawpowa! wrote:
>On 20/04/2016 gfdonc wrote:
>>On 20/04/2016 Rawpowa! wrote:
>>>But thanks for the replys Zarb and Gfcdonc, I'll try to keep a large
>>cam
>>>for the belay.
>>
>>So so we're not confused, it's a medium size, not large. Large relative
>>to your microcams, yes. red or gold I think.
>>
>
>Right, I'll just take all my cams I think :) Maybe leave the 4 at home.

You'll want your 4 for watchtower crack!

There are 18 messages in this topic.

 

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