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 Page 1 of 3. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 48
Tag-line Rappel around a tree

6:40:51 PM
I wanted to get suave with using a single rope + tagline for rappels so I don't have to carry 2 ropes up BBB at Pierces Pass and had a few questions.

I know that the rappel descent in that particular instance is off chains, but in other circumstances like abseiling from trees or slings, will a pull-line setup with a biner-block still work? Or would it only be ideal off rings? Just running the idea through my head, I can't think of any safety problems with rigging around a tree, but I can imagine it being harder to pull the rope due to friction...

10:04:29 PM
It will work, but you could just put both strands in your atc and not bother with the biner block.

7:18:15 AM
It would work ok, but again friction is increased. I'd suggest bringing some tape/tat and putting that around the tree and going off that. Think of the poor tree, ring-barking it with a rope and it dying is worse IMO than the sight of a piece of tape!

Id usually suggest rigging it as per normal, not a pullthrough. Ensuring theres not a massive diameter difference in your ropes, it will reduce likelyhood of snagging up your ropes! The skinny rope will want to feed through faster so do pay attention to that, put knots in the end!!

7:56:50 AM
Thanks for the tips re trees.

phil: Feeding both strands through the atc would be asking for trouble without a backup like a biner block. When I mean a tagline, I am talking about 5-6mm accessory cord. Relying on good friction from that diameter would be asking a bit much.

10:07:36 AM
Zarb: Perhaps that is skinny enough to cause trouble. I regularly do it without issue with a 7mm tag line. If I am concerned that there may be inadequate friction in a particular setup, just rapping on the tag line for instance, an additional biner through the lines on your belay device will add friction (at least if it is a tuber style device).

2:54:24 PM
I haven't done this type of rap with a biner block before so I have a couple of questions.

So you have a biner tied to the rap rope to stop it pulling through the anchor. I am curious about when you pull the tag line, you will have a biner flying down at you from 50m above. Is this much of an issue, you really wouldn't want it smacking you in the head. Plus the biner would get a bit trashed, so I am guessing you must use a biner designated for this purpose and not for normal use.

I did Bunny Bucket recently with two single ropes and the extra weight really sucked. Especially on the top head wall where the line was quite straight and no rope drag, two times 50m of rope hanging off my harness on lead was really heavy by the end of the long pitch. I was really wishing we had doubles, but I like the sound of rapping with a skinny tag line. A bit cheaper option I suppose than buying double rope.

4:04:19 PM
No the biner is on the end that you pull down. So it might fall the last few metres if it does at all.

The whole system involves joining the two ropes as you would for a normal abseil, with the thick rope running through the rings/sling and the joining knot about a foot below. After the joining knot, you have your 6mm tag line preferably coiled in a pack carried with you so it doesn't tangle.
Now for the biner block.
You tie an alpine butterfly between the joining knot and the rings (on the thick line), and clip your biner into the loop. It then clips into the thick line running out the other side of the rings to close the system.
Climber then rappels the single thick line.
Climber finishes rappel and pulls the 6mm tagline to retrieve ropes.

4:05:33 PM

4:06:50 PM
Obviously more effective if you use rings and the abseil is straightforward with no major snags for the biner when you pull the ropes. I have heard it is a popular system for alpine and ice climbers?
4:22:02 PM
And please practise it with a backup before using it in the real world.

4:23:33 PM
I've also seen it done with a clove hitch rather than an alpine butterfly; usually so someone could rap with a grigri. With large rings, there less chance of stuff getting pulled through the ring and fouling your attempts to pull it down.

5:18:57 PM
Thanks, it makes more sense now. A clove hitch looks like a good idea too.

4:19:47 AM
On 18/02/2013 Zarb wrote:
>Obviously more effective if you use rings and the abseil is straightforward
>with no major snags for the biner when you pull the ropes. I have heard
>it is a popular system for alpine and ice climbers?

Most ice climbers I've seen (me included) have kept it simple - either a single 60-70m and either walk off or do a few extra raps, or doubles (my normal choice) or maybe twins. With an 8mm double setup the weight saving - faff ratio and the extra risk of a snag makes me think it's not really worth it - I'd prefer to save the weight elsewhere.
8:20:39 AM
The whole thing seems like a drag to me. If the ropes are hard to pull, then tugging on a 6mm retrieval line won't make life any easier. Then you still have to carry that line with you when you climb.

Personally I'm getting back into using double (or twin) ropes, particularly on longer and/or more adventurous routes. Rope cutting is definitely more of a risk when you climb on a single rope. Just think of the Nick Kaczorowski accident near BBB.

Two ropes are a lot safer than one.

8:29:15 AM
On 19/02/2013 trog wrote:
>On 18/02/2013 Zarb wrote:
>With an 8mm double setup the weight saving - faff ratio and the extra risk of a snag makes me think it's not really worth it - I'd prefer to save the weight elsewhere.

This is a valid point, especially if you were doing this all the time not as a one off. Egosan has some 7.2mm shoelaces rated as half and twin that'd probably be lighter than a single and a 6mm tag line.
9:02:38 AM
Ditto what Trog, simey and ajfclark said.
If you must use it why would you use a clove hitch over an alpine butterfly? Probably because you aren't comfortable tying an alpine butterfly.
The clove hitch is going to be a bugger to undo afterwards. Alpine butterfly will be easy.

9:16:33 AM
I think the clove hitch is used instead if there is a possibility the alpine butterfly knot could get sucked into the anchor/mallion/ring and snag.
I wonder if there is ever an advantage to using a tag line over doubles (apart from not having to buy two more ropes). Maybe only a small weight saving?
But yes I agree,would prefer to have a set of doubles for that sort of thing. Much better for longer routes all round.
9:30:30 AM
I like two ropes myself, and being a bumbly-grade climber, the weight is not super important to me. A nice compromise for me which avoided buying lots of ropes was getting a Sterling Nano (single rope, 9.2mm, also rated as half and twin rope) and one half/double rope, instead of a matched pair. I use the Sterling as my single, and when doing long multipitch or expecting to do long raps, I bring the half rope and climb on both. It is a bit heavier than single + tag line, but I just make the second carry my lunch, waterproof, shoes, water, phone, camera, routebook, torch, batteries etc :P

I've had some younger climbers go "yer gonna die" for using unmatched ropes as doubles, but somehow we survived for decades using an 11mm + a 9mm...

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10:47:20 AM
I really like doubles on multipitch climbs and knowing how to rap a single double is quite a good skill IMHO.

I always use an alpine butterfly and locking biner as the block and like this website for more info;

11:16:07 AM
There's some pictures of the oversized ring hang up stuff here:

Not sure why you wouldn't back it up by clipping it back to the main strand though.

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There are 48 messages in this topic.


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