/ NEWS/VIDEO: New Technique : Belaying the leader with a GRIGRI

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Petzl have uploaded a video to demonstrate the correct technique to belay the leader with a Grigri.The video demonstrates the correct method as recommended by Petzl and a new technique developed by climbers.

Watch at http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/
Morgan Woods - on 01 Aug 2008
In reply to UKC Gear:

Petzl are right to emphasise this....despite what a lot of people think a gri-gri is not a hands free belay device.

I tend to use a hybrid of the classic and the new to pay out slack ie thumb facing gri gri and hand move onto cam but doesn't stray from dead end of rope.....will have a go at the new method and see how it works.
Paz - on 01 Aug 2008
In reply to Morgan Woods:

Can you or someone describe the new method, I can't see it in the video
TimS on 01 Aug 2008 - OilSearchLimited.O2GSC76F03.optus.net.au
In reply to Morgan Woods:
> (In reply to UKC Gear)
>
> Petzl are right to emphasise this....despite what a lot of people think a gri-gri is not a hands free belay device.
>
How would a hands free belay device work - would you use your teeth to pay out slack or you feet?
Morgan Woods - on 01 Aug 2008
In reply to Paz:

hand comes in to pay out and thumb presses lever (ie cam) down while holding loosley onto rope.
Paz - on 01 Aug 2008
In reply to Morgan Woods:

That sounds like the 8a.nu method. I was never convinced you could get the slack out quick enough.
mick o the north on 01 Aug 2008 - 79-66-107-118.dynamic.dsl.as9105.com
In reply to UKC Gear: Why do we need a video to use a product that's been on the market for a long time ? No use to anyone who doesn't know or can't access it . Surely there is only one safe technique for it's use , or is there ? As living proof ( just ) of the fallability of this product i would never use one again . As i sit nursing a whole array of broken bones i've lost count of reports of accidents and near misses . Is this perhaps connected in some way with the emmergence of the video ?
mick o the north on 02 Aug 2008 - 79-66-107-118.dynamic.dsl.as9105.com
In reply to mick o the north: Just to add since i am now very pissed off with gri gris and staring at my living room wall in the middle of the climbing season ; Ive had 30 years or more of climbing on a sticht plate unscathed and with no video instruction ! So much for progress and improved equyipment .
Lemony - on 02 Aug 2008
In reply to mick o the north: Ahem... would it be inappropriate to ask at this point whether you have one you want to get rid of?
neil the weak - on 03 Aug 2008
In reply to mick o the north:

I hardly dare to ask, but how exactly did your accident with this "unsafe" device happen? Grigri's, like any other belay device still require the dead rope to be held by the belayer at all times, in order to provide a little initial friction to activate the cam. The instructions that come with them actively warn against letting go of the dead rope and instruct the user to manipulate the rope just as they would with any other belay device. If you can belay safely on a sticht plate, then you should be able to use a grigri safely. I do personally know 2 people who have been dropped by belayer using a gri gri and not holding onto the dead rope, had their belayer been using the same (stupid) method on a belay plate the results would have been just the same. I don't know why people think Grigri's are "hands off" devices but I think this misconception is probably what causes most accidents with them, rather than there being a problem with the devices themselves.
SARS on 03 Aug 2008
In reply to UKC Gear:

Basically the old 8a.nu method, the method I use and the only way I found to feed out quickly.

Great device. I wish more sport climbers would use it [properly].
Alun - on 03 Aug 2008
In reply to mick o the north:
> As i sit nursing a whole array of broken bones i've lost count of reports of accidents and near misses . Is this perhaps connected in some way with the emmergence of the video ?

Sorry about your injuries. I think you're right, petzl have released the video because most accidents that involve a gri-gri have come about because people are using them incorrectly i.e. letting go of the deadrope, clamping the cam shut and pulling through live rope. i live in the land of the grigri (pretty much every climber uses one here and, ironically, view 'tradional' type placed with suspicion!), yet I rarely see it being used safely.

The new petzl method is just a modification of the 8a one proposed years ago. It's *not* as fast as the unsafe-clamping method, but if you practice it is still much better than using a friction plate*, and of course much safer.

* if anybody disagrees or is puzzled by this, I respectfully suggest they search the UKC archives for reams of threads which explain the grigri's advantages when sport climbing (which apply even when using the slightly slower, safer, method).
Paz - on 03 Aug 2008
In reply to SARS:

Cheers for confirming my guess. I'll look at it again then. I still think the risk of causing someone to fall off by not paying out fast enough has to be weighed up against the chance of someone falling while they;re pullling slack up - most of us usually fall while we're clipping, if we're gonna fall clipping.

If always wondered if the original petzl method (regular belaying - like putting your seat belt on while your cornering at full petzl) was developed at crags with really long routes wiht a lot of unobstructed air to fall into.

I've certainly often observed the competition wall style of belaying safely using a Gri-Gri - stand 4m back from the wall and have a marvellous 1m deep catenary of slack. Indeed, it does keep you off the deck if you fall clipping the lower off.

My final thought is, I've held falls recently off trad routes and they're hard to hold, just box standard ATC and 8-9mm rope. I'm not saying I'm in competent - noone's decked with me belaying - I'm saying (in single pitch safe climbing when you lower off and top rope or bring up a second) the grip position of your hands used in holding a fall is the same as what you were just using a minute ago while you pushed your self to your limit. You are not always as fresh ready to go fully compus mentis belayer with all devices as you would like to think you are. For now I'm tempted to try sticking an extra gate in the ATC. Given my grip is tired, I wonder, am I really safer belaying with an ATC than a Gri-Gri (and using a single rope instead)? - I've always said it's Petzls' next logical development to make a double rope version of the Gri Gri - just sticking two cams either side of the current rigid bit in the midle and having two flappy bits. but then you could be looking at a 100 belay device that only one portion of UK climbers will buy, and another will decry as black magic and the devil's work.

I may choose to ignore other belay devices in this post. Hardly anyone uses them for a reason. Except the Reverso and Italian hitch.

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