Carabiner Brake Rappel
Clink, Ting, Boing... "Dude, I Dropped my ATC!".
Just the other day I watched the look of horror on the face of a climber
as his brand new silver DMM Bug went whizzing down a 150m cliff and disappeared
into shrubbery below. How to abseil after you've dropped your descending
device? Try rigging a carabiner brake rappel. Just follow these steps:
Step 1: Two carabiners are placed atop each other with
opposed and reversed gates. Steps 3 to 5: The rope should run across the spines of the
horizontally placed carabiners, but the gates should be reversed. To increase friction, add a third
horizontal carabiner. Step 6: Clip the rig to your harness, preferably
with a locking carabiner, and you're away.
Note, oval carabiners work best, however you can
also use D shaped carabiners (as pictured).
The exact same Carabiner Brake, except this time we've used a slightly faster method of forming it. Follow these steps:
Step 1: Clip two carabiners, gates reversed
and opposed, to the harness. Step 2: Feed the slack rope through the
two carabiners forming a loop. Step 3: Clip a horizontally placed
carabiner, spine up as pictured. Step 4: Place another horizontal
carabiner, this time with the gate reversed (but not opposed), so the
spine is also up. Step 5: Pull the whole mess tight. Step 6:
Continue pulling tight, allowing the horizontally placed carabiners to
slide over the vertically placed ones, and there you have it, the
Carabiner brake rappel.
An alternative to the Carabiner
Brake Rappel shown above, would be to rap with the good old rope twisting Munter
Hitch, which could also be used to
Down Without A Rappel Device - Climbing skills article from altrec.com
Brake Rappel - Illustration from Climbing Magazine's web site.
Dropped My Belay Device - From Dawn's FAQ on the TradGirl web site.
As Brake Bars - From Dr. Gary D Storrick's web site.
Improvised Carabiner Brakes - A PFD Document From Rescue Dynamics.
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