/ Climbing wall about to ban Click Up & Smart on centre ropes

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hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
We are considering banning the use of the Climbing Technology Click Up and the Mammut Smart Belay Device on our centre ropes.

Reason: Unlike an ATC or Grigri, both the rope and the metal part of the belay device, share contact with the same part of the karabiner. This means that any damage caused to the karabiner by the metal part of the belay device, will cut up and damage the rope where it runs over the karabiner.
mattrm - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Based on what evidence? Are you seeing damage to the rope from those devices? If yes, have you raised that with the importers/manufacturers, as that does sound like a safety issue.

Seems a bit daft.

I can just about understand some places banning bowlines. But specific devices that have passed safety tests already? Odd.

It's as bad as the places that insist you only use a Gri-Gri (some US walls do that right?).

If you're being this paranoid, I hope that you've banned bowlines and insist on all climbers wearing helmets at your wall.
Durbs on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Won't any damage caused by the metal part be general wearing/rubbing so will always cause smooth wear, not any sharp edges?

I can't see how you'd ever generate enough energy to actually chip a krab enough to potentially damage a rope...

Are you asking for advice, or just putting this out as a heads-up?
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Is this actually happening and damaging your ropes, or is (as seems to eb the case with the Grigri) the metal part of the device made of a softer metal than a krab and therefore the device takes the damage and not the krab?

My Grigri doesn't seem to even have worn the paint[1] off the krab it's on. If anything, there's more of the coating taken off my Belay Master from rope wear.

[1] I use a dedicated krab for it just in case, and it's one of the brown-painted type ones.

Neil
adam 24 - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: Weird, I would have thought this would come out in the product tests.

I can see a slightly different reason for centres not being keen on Smarts. The smart pulls the rope through the Krab at a very tight angle and seems to wear the krab down really fast. My mate put a groove several mm deep in his belay krab in just one season using a smart and now his rope is covered in that horrible aluminium residue. Not very nice on your centre ropes if its happening a lot. He switched to using a steel krab to reduce the problem.
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I'm calling Troll. Anonymous poster and no reference to which walls. 1/10.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to GridNorth:
> (In reply to hsv) I'm calling Troll. Anonymous poster and no reference to which walls. 1/10.

Sorry, but no troll. I manage the wall and have been monitoring peoples karabiners that have been used on these belay devices and have seen the damage caused to them. Only minor damage, but this will accumulate.

In reply to others:
The testing has obviously not considered this aspect. Any damage to the karabiner in the area where the rope runs over it, can damage a rope running over it in tension (as when lowering off.)

We are not planning to stop climbers using these devices with their own ropes, but why would you use a belay device that damages your rope?
deacondeacon - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: which wall is it?
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: Name the wall. I have been using a Smart regularly for a couple of years now and I haven't experienced any damage to my rope. I will concede that it is probably depositing small amounts of aluminium on it however but so do other devices.
Slipknot_olly on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: Having seeing what happened to a carabiner of my friends after one afternoons worth of working a hard route, i dont blame you its a device that appears to not handle falls aswell as a ATC.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to deacondeacon:
HSV.
Hertfordshire Sports Village.
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Slipknot_olly:

Can you post (or get him to post) pictures?

Have you reported it to the manufacturer?

Neil
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
I don't have any photos yet, sorry. But anyone can feel free to post pictures of their karabiners; although I'm not sure how clearly it will show up in a photo.
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I think this is a little alarmist and you now should produce some evidence. Having said that I have just been and checked my rig which is a Mammut Smart and a Petzl AMD screwgate karabiner. Both have been in regular use, 3 times a week at the wall plus 3 or 4 trips abroad, for at least 2 years. There are no signs of damage other than slight groove on the inside of the krab where the rope passes over. I consider normal and has happened on every belay karabiner I have ever owned.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
> (In reply to Slipknot_olly)
>
> Have you reported it to the manufacturer?
>
> Neil

Not really inclined to. Not sure they would take kindly to criticism of their baby.
In reply to hsv:
> Reason: Unlike an ATC or Grigri, both the rope and the metal part of the belay device, share contact with the same part of the karabiner. This means that any damage caused to the karabiner by the metal part of the belay device, will cut up and damage the rope where it runs over the karabiner.

I have been using a Click-up for 2 years now with the same crab and it is completely smooth. I have now retired the crab because of the smooth groove in it, but there are no burrs.

http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=230520

I think banning these devices would be a huge over-reaction especially considering how safe they both are. It is almost impossible to drop someone with the Click-up. The only thing against it, I heard one wall owner say, was that it is "too good" and might give people a false sense of security when they use something else.

I also think the bowline ban was an over-reaction. I wrote about that here - http://www.rockfax.com/news/2011/12/04/knot-safety/

I understand that some walls are having pressure applied by insurance companies who often haven't a clue about the reality of the situation, but I don't think your suggested ban is remotely sensible.

Alan
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to GridNorth:
> (In reply to hsv) I think this is a little alarmist and you now should produce some evidence. Having said that I have just been and checked my rig which is a Mammut Smart and a Petzl AMD screwgate karabiner. Both have been in regular use, 3 times a week at the wall plus 3 or 4 trips abroad, for at least 2 years. There are no signs of damage other than slight groove on the inside of the krab where the rope passes over. I consider normal and has happened on every belay karabiner I have ever owned.

This decision is not being taken lightly. As I mentioned, I had my concerns when I first saw these devices and have monitored their use for some time. I am voicing our intentions here to see other climbers feedback. Although you may not have identified damage to your equipment, others such as Slipknot_olly, above, have.
In reply to hsv:
> Not really inclined to. Not sure they would take kindly to criticism of their baby.

What a bizarre response. Any company would welcome correspondence like this.

http://www.climbingtechnology.it/en-US/contacts/italian-network.html

Alan
NottsRich on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
> I have been using a Click-up for 2 years now with the same crab and it is completely smooth. I have now retired the crab because of the smooth groove in it, but there are no burrs.
>
> http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=230520
>

I'm surprised you're retiring a krab with that much/little wear on it. Why are you?
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
> I have been using a Click-up for 2 years now with the same crab and it is completely smooth. I have now retired the crab because of the smooth groove in it, but there are no burrs.
>
> http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=230520
>
> I think banning these devices would be a huge over-reaction especially considering how safe they both are. It is almost impossible to drop someone with the Click-up. The only thing against it, I heard one wall owner say, was that it is "too good" and might give people a false sense of security when they use something else.
>
I'm not commenting on the devices ability to belay someone safely. I am commenting on damage caused by it. We are not banning it completely, just on the centre rope which it can damage.

In reply to NottsRich:
> I'm surprised you're retiring a krab with that much/little wear on it. Why are you?

In my job, I am not short of belay krabs. ;-)

Alan
Marek - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to Neil Williams)
> [...]
>
> Not really inclined to. Not sure they would take kindly to criticism of their baby.

So let me see...
You are a business that thinks it has identified a safety issue with some equipment, is going to turn away custom, but can't be bothered to discuss this with the manufacturer of said equipment? Odd. Not a place I would want to be.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
> What a bizarre response. Any company would welcome correspondence like this.
>
> http://www.climbingtechnology.it/en-US/contacts/italian-network.html
>
> Alan

Ok, thanks. I'll look at drafting a comment to them.
This "bizarre response" is following a previous incident when contacting Wild Country over another issue which caused a near fatal accident.
In reply to hsv:
> I'm not commenting on the devices ability to belay someone safely. I am commenting on damage caused by it. We are not banning it completely, just on the centre rope which it can damage.

Which is why I posted the photo of a smooth krab which had been used for the last two years.

In more general terms, I can't understand climbing walls enforcing policies that make people use unfamiliar knots and belay devices. This seems to be just asking for trouble.

Alan
mattrm - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>

>
> In more general terms, I can't understand climbing walls enforcing policies that make people use unfamiliar knots and belay devices. This seems to be just asking for trouble.
>

I agree, it seems like a bit of a knee jerk reaction to a bit of a non-issue.

hsv - As a general note, if you have users with krabs that have wear that will cause damage to your ropes (damage that was caused in other ways) would you also ban those krabs? A much better way would be to check krabs before use and ask people with krabs with excessive wear to use an alternative.

Also, I can't believe that Wild Country ignored your concerns. I can't believe that Climbing Technology will ignore them either. The only time I've ever contacted a climbing company about kit safety (DMM) I had an excellent response, including some free kit.

Maybe you could also consider bouncy castles at the bottom of routes?
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Marek:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
> So let me see...
> You are a business that thinks it has identified a safety issue with some equipment, is going to turn away custom, but can't be bothered to discuss this with the manufacturer of said equipment? Odd. Not a place I would want to be.

In what way exactly is this safety concern going to "turn away custom"?
In reply to hsv:

This sounds a little ridiculous.

I've been using a Click-Up for well over a year and I've never seen any sign of damage caused by metal to metal contact. The contact surfaces aren't like a nut where you've got a coarse wire against a krab or indeed a bolt where falling onto the clip scares the quickraw.

If anything: The only downside to them is they always keep the rope in contact with the same part of the krab when lowering off and the rope wears the belay krab faster than normal.
winhill - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to GridNorth)

> Although you may not have identified damage to your equipment, others such as Slipknot_olly, above, have.

I would be extremely cynical about the responses of people who have posted reports of damage, one says it caused several millimetres of damage in just one session, the other in one afternoon!

There would be a big difference between rope to metal wear and metal to metal contact, yet people don't seem to state the difference or even mention what sort of damage was caused, so it's use as evidence is only slightly above zero.

You didn't answer if your ropes were showing any signs of damage yet, or if anyone had turned up to climb with a krab you thought was too worn to use?
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to winhill:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> There would be a big difference between rope to metal wear and metal to metal contact, yet people don't seem to state the difference or even mention what sort of damage was caused, so it's use as evidence is only slightly above zero.
>
> You didn't answer if your ropes were showing any signs of damage yet, or if anyone had turned up to climb with a krab you thought was too worn to use?

Ok, obviously with centre ropes it would be impossible to apportion any rope wear or damage to any one thing. The damage is built up over multiple uses and not just a single use. There is a duty of care to reduce damage to equipment where reasonably possible.

Yes, I have told climbers who have damaged their belaymaster karabiner with a Grigri, to not use it with their ATC, and they were very understanding when they looked at and felt the cuts on the krab. Kinda frustrating when they had an ATC hanging from a screwgate on their harness.
Davy Virdee - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Robert Durran:

> My Click-Up is brilliant and anyone telling me not to use it will get >very short shrift.


I'll look forward to that day, then Robert :-)
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: In your post you do not really invite question or comment however I'd argue posting publicly here is inviting comment.

I think your decision would be daft, pointless and would alienate me as a customer. People are asking for evidence yet you don't offer any. I know many people who climb and use a mammut smart, if I need to replace my GriGri ever I will buy one.

You are a business, be aware that placing unnecessary restrictions upon customers will alienate them and may cause for them to take their custom elsewhere.
jkarran - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

> We are not planning to stop climbers using these devices with their own ropes, but why would you use a belay device that damages your rope?

Are you actually seeing accelerated rope damage? I really can't see how smooth forged alloy rubbing on smooth forged alloy is going to produce the sort of nicks and burrs that will damage your ropes, if anything it's likely to burnish any that pre-exist down.

Ultimately it's your call, your ropes and I doubt you'll alienate many users, they're still pretty niche devices at least where I climb.

jk
In reply to Paul Phillips - UKC and UKH:
> If anything: The only downside to them is they always keep the rope in contact with the same part of the krab when lowering off and the rope wears the belay krab faster than normal.

This is true and I commented on this to Stefano (the designer) at the Friedrichshafen trade show. He acknowledged that it was the case and then gave me one of their new belay krabs which is made of something a bit tougher - the olive green ones if you have bought the device more recently.

The groove once-formed also keeps the rope in one place, away from any burring (if there was any).

Alan
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

So given that very few people actually use these devices and you haven't attributed any damage directly to one, I think your concern is unfounded and will simply annoy people.

Neil
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to puppythedog:
> (In reply to hsv) In your post you do not really invite question or comment however I'd argue posting publicly here is inviting comment.

I'm pretty sure that anyone reading the post will realise that purely by the fact it was posted here, it was opening a discussion on the matter.
But thanks for your comment and I will try to make it clearer in future.

I do understand that some climbers will not be happy with this, but I would hope that they can understand that it is not a decision made without fair reason. There are plenty of other perfectly good belay devices out there.
iksander on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I have both devices and have never seen any burring. Maybe more constructive to have a notice up at your wall about checking your belay crab and changing it as necessary - whatever you belay device is.
robatkinson - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I dont use one of the mentioned devices but on the basis that so many people are using them on here and seem confused by your response i would suspect that the reason for any ban would just be unfounded.

this seems like a rule for the sake of a rule. If i was one of your staff i'd feel just a tad awkward going and asking a group of climbers to stop using a specific belay device, i can just see that going swimmingly.
In reply to hsv:
> There are plenty of other perfectly good belay devices out there.

The Click-Up is a perfectly good belay device ;)
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> So given that very few people actually use these devices and you haven't attributed any damage directly to one, I think your concern is unfounded and will simply annoy people.
>
> Neil

Sorry.
Not quite sure how you would expect to attribute any damage directly to any one device on a centre rope which is used many times by different climbers using different devices on a daily basis. I could say that all of the fluffiness on the ropes is caused by climbers using these devices, but everyone would know that it can't be proven and is unlikely.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to iksander:
> (In reply to hsv) I have both devices and have never seen any burring. Maybe more constructive to have a notice up at your wall about checking your belay crab and changing it as necessary - whatever you belay device is.

Yes, that is also a good idea. I would hope that climbers check their gear anyway. Unfortunately, not sure that having a notice would make that much difference. If you've spent money on some shiny new gear and damage it, maybe you'll be reluctant to retire it when you're just using it on a centre rope?
ads.ukclimbing.com
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Paul Phillips - UKC and UKH:

While I haven't got one, it looks very good to me - most of the advantages of the ATC and GriGri with few of the disadvantages of either.

Neil
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

So why do you think there is a problem? There must be evidence, otherwise you are banning something on gut feel which is plain silly and, as I say, will annoy people.

As someone else said, while I use a bowline I understand why some walls ban them - they are genuinely less "fail safe" than a Fig 8 in that they are much less tolerant of being mistied. And people have died in accidents which have been attributed to mistied bowlines (usually the accidental omission of the stopper knot I think).

But I don't understand this if there is no evidence of it actually happening.

Neil
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I see that you are a Sports Centre rather than a dedicated climbing wall so the response does not surprise me.

A centre near me banned climbers from taking their climbing shoes off until I pointed out to them in a formal complaint that most centres didn't allow outdoor shoes on their mats, that for many it would cause pain and discomfort by keeping them on and that other activities like karate, swimming, etc. seemed to allow bare feet in ALL areas. The ban was lifted but this does illustrate a lack of understanding in this type of establishment.
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: It is a decision without fair reason which is highlighted by inability to evidence fair reason. It is reactionary and over the top and would put me and I am sure many of my friends off from using your wall. Telling you this does not serve any purpose for me, I am telling you for the benefit of your wall that I am certain the climbers I know would not tolerate such pointless restriction and would take their business elsewhere.

My unsolicited advice is to give up on the idea.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to puppythedog:
> (In reply to hsv) It is a decision without fair reason which is highlighted by inability to evidence fair reason. It is reactionary and over the top and would put me and I am sure many of my friends off from using your wall. Telling you this does not serve any purpose for me, I am telling you for the benefit of your wall that I am certain the climbers I know would not tolerate such pointless restriction and would take their business elsewhere.
>
> My unsolicited advice is to give up on the idea.

I appreciate the time taken by everyone to give feedback on this, thanks.

I believe that there is fair reason. Everyone knows that when you have metal contacting metal and moving around, they cut in to each other, which is why it is recommended that you should always avoid metal to metal contact where possible (so I am not saying "NEVER" -because there are situations where metal to metal cannot be avoided.) These devices, although they may be nice to use, they have metal to metal contact, which should be avoided. So why design a device which deliberately combines metal to metal contact on the same surface that a rope runs over under tension? If there was a modification which forced the device to not move laterally, then the rope would not run over the same part of the karabiner surface which gets damaged by the belay device. The problem is that the device can move across the surface. -maybe a thought for MK II? or "new" karabiner design?
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
Or use a steely?
itsThere on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: The clickup prototype (or one of them) was tested in a climbing wall in the uk. This was a fair few years ago. I think they would be aware of any problems or would like to me made aware. Its not like they would want to cause damage to anyone.

This post seems like a pre-emptive strike against the rant which would be caused by you banning the clickup.
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

So raise it with the manufacturer, who have had it certified as safe.

You seem to be making decisions on whether something is safe based on your opinion with no evidence, which seems a bad way to go, and does not consider the advantages of these devices, specifically that when using one a climber is less likely to be dropped due to inattentive belaying, of which there is plenty of evidence?

Neil
john arran - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Unless you can cite even a single case of a krab being notably damaged by either of these devices in normal use it sounds very much like a solution in need of a problem.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to itsThere:
> (In reply to hsv) The clickup prototype (or one of them) was tested in a climbing wall in the uk. This was a fair few years ago. I think they would be aware of any problems or would like to me made aware. Its not like they would want to cause damage to anyone.

I'm not saying that it is intentionally bad, but not fully thought through.

>
> This post seems like a pre-emptive strike against the rant which would be caused by you banning the clickup.

Is that a bad thing? May be better to get opinions before hand?
mike kann - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: To be honest I should check up more on the newer edelrid Jul devices made from Stainless steel. Having used one for a few days I immediately noticed wear directly in the main wear area of the karabiner I used. To me, these devices are seriously compromised but as I had only borrowed it to see what it was like, I'm not about to write to Edelrid...
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> So raise it with the manufacturer, who have had it certified as safe.
>
> You seem to be making decisions on whether something is safe based on your opinion with no evidence, which seems a bad way to go, and does not consider the advantages of these devices, specifically that when using one a climber is less likely to be dropped due to inattentive belaying, of which there is plenty of evidence?
>
> Neil

There are other belay device options which have safety feature which are arguably better than these devices, so they don't have exclusivity on safety. Personally, I would also rather have an attentive belayer!

My "opinion" is based on over 25 years climbing experience and an engineering background. I'm not about to start playing the "I know better" game, but I'm not basing my educated opinions on guess work.
As it is, I'm yet to see a strong argument for these devices.
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

"I'm not about to start playing the "I know better" game"

That's precisely what you are doing.

"As it is, I'm yet to see a strong argument for these devices."

That's very different from an opinion that they are unsafe. If you take that attitude in running your wall, you will find you lose customers.

Neil
Robert Durran - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:

> When using one a climber is less likely to be dropped due to inattentive belaying, of which there is plenty of evidence?

Yes, there is no doubt that the Click-Up does offer a massive improvement in belaying safety and this talk of banning them is total nonsense. It is a bruilliant device.

Someone earlier suggested that they can give a false sense of security and lead to poor belaying if someone reverts to a normal belay plate and there might be some truth in this (I think this applies more so to the horribly counterintuitive GriGri!). There may be some truth in this, but I think a greater potential issue to be aware of is if the rope is inadvertaently threaded the wrong way and it behaves like a normal belay device unexpectedly - it still works but complacency might lead to disaster. The fact that it still works like this is sold as a safety feature - I'm not so sure; better if it became unusable at all like this!
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: Well the arguments for the Smart are:

1. It's and assisted braking device
2. Compared to a GriGri it's cheap
3. Compared to GriGri it's light and less bulky
4. It has no moving parts
5. It has less potential to be used incorrectly than a GriGri
6. As far as I'm concerned after lots of use it has not caused any damage to either my rope or the krab
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> "I'm not about to start playing the "I know better" game"
>
> That's precisely what you are doing.
>
> "As it is, I'm yet to see a strong argument for these devices."
>
> That's very different from an opinion that they are unsafe. If you take that attitude in running your wall, you will find you lose customers.
>
> Neil

It's in response to the suggestion that I don't know what I'm talking about.
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to GridNorth: Having said all that I will concede that the Smart has sharp edges where it touches the krab and perhaps if it was subject to numerous big falls it COULD start to have an affect. I honestly believe though that you are creating a mountain out of a molehill.
deepsoup - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> May be better to get opinions before hand?

Why bother? You don't seem remotely interested in any opinion but your own.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to GridNorth:
> (In reply to hsv) Well the arguments for the Smart are:
>
> 1. It's and assisted braking device
There are other assisted braking devices available that don't damage the rope.
> 2. Compared to a GriGri it's cheap
Do you want the cheapest or the best?
> 3. Compared to GriGri it's light and less bulky
Never tried bench pressing either of them. (sorry, that was uncalled for)
> 4. It has no moving parts
ATC, Bug, VC, etc.
> 5. It has less potential to be used incorrectly than a GriGri
Nothing beats reading the instructions and seeking expert instruction.
> 6. As far as I'm concerned after lots of use it has not caused any damage to either my rope or the krab
I appreciate your feedback and wish you well. Maybe you haven't used it and held lead falls, which are more likely to cause more significant damage to the krab, from the sound of others feedback?
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to deepsoup:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
> Why bother? You don't seem remotely interested in any opinion but your own.

Then I would not discuss it here. Oh, hang on, I am.
ads.ukclimbing.com
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I've fallen plenty of times onto Gridnorth's smart. It has held lead falls.

I'm a bit confused, are you garnering opinion? or merely saying what you are going to do and taking an entrenched position because all of the opinion so far is your choice is a daft one and yet you continue with it.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
The reason I posted this is to get feedback from a large and experienced audience. I am really quite surprised that I have not read any previous comments or concerns about this style of device.
I expected to get my fair share of abuse, but I wanted to see if there was much evidence of any noticed problems climbers had experienced from using these devices after a reasonable trial period. Thanks to those of you who have suggested that they have concerns and have noticed potential damage to equipment. I would appreciate any other feedback and evidence of damage caused by this type of device, thanks.
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

You haven't had abuse

"Thanks to those of you who have suggested that they have concerns and have noticed potential damage to equipment. I would appreciate any other feedback and evidence of damage caused by this type of device, thanks.

What about all the people who are experienced and have experience of the devices using them all the time for their climbing with one rope an snot noticing a difference?
Hello,

Hsv, you must provide evidence. To us, since you reported it here. But more importantly to the manufacturers since they are ultimately responsible for what they manufacture and market. You did not provide any evidence so far. What you are saying about these devices not being "thought through" and your intentions to ban them at your wall are profound "accusations" and can and will have an effect on how these devices are perceived by some if not many climbers, beginners and not, that read UKC. That's more people than you probably can imagine in the UK and outside of the UK. Please report your findings, with evidence, to the manufacturers. For the sake of that safety that you are trying to pursue.

Ciao,

Nicola Ciancaglini
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: What! Aren't you also going to thank those who have given you feedback and expressed an opinion that they have not experienced any problems. Sounds to me like you are just trying to gather evidence to support your case. My reading of the thread is that there is very little.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to puppythedog:
> (In reply to hsv) I've fallen plenty of times onto Gridnorth's smart. It has held lead falls.
>
> I'm a bit confused, are you garnering opinion? or merely saying what you are going to do and taking an entrenched position because all of the opinion so far is your choice is a daft one and yet you continue with it.

You still seem to be missing the point, sorry. I'm not suggesting that the Smart isn't a "safe" device, capable of holding a fall. My point is about the damaged caused to the rope as a result of the device damaging the karabiner. I am garnering evidence to support my belief that these devices currently have a design flaw.
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I haven't missed the point, you have missed the many points people have made saying that they have no experience of what you believe is the problem. I haven't answered your question about apples (that the device is likely to affect the carabiner and therefore the rope) with an answer about pears (that the device is safe at catching falls).

I must say it's bloody frustrating when people ask for evidence, get evidence contrary to their view, ignore that and ask for evidence that supports their view. It's an ignorant approach and says an awful lot about your attitude towards all of this people who have taken the time to answer you today.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to GridNorth:
> (In reply to hsv) What! Aren't you also going to thank those who have given you feedback and expressed an opinion that they have not experienced any problems. Sounds to me like you are just trying to gather evidence to support your case. My reading of the thread is that there is very little.

Yes, the information I am looking for is specific. Ok, if everyone drove their cars without a seatbelt and never had to stop suddenly, they could say that they don't need a seatbelt. The seatbelt only becomes of any use when you need it. So if these belay devices are used in any situations where they take falls which damage the karabiner, then it makes my case. So I am asking for those climbers to report these instances to highlight, in my opinion, the design flaw of having metal against metal contact on the same surface shared with the rope.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to puppythedog:
> (In reply to hsv) I haven't missed the point, you have missed the many points people have made saying that they have no experience of what you believe is the problem. I haven't answered your question about apples (that the device is likely to affect the carabiner and therefore the rope) with an answer about pears (that the device is safe at catching falls).
>
> I must say it's bloody frustrating when people ask for evidence, get evidence contrary to their view, ignore that and ask for evidence that supports their view. It's an ignorant approach and says an awful lot about your attitude towards all of this people who have taken the time to answer you today.

I have heard your evidence and appreciate it, thanks. I am looking for other evidence to support my belief and observations that they damage the karabiner.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to GoCragging.com:
> Hello,
>
> Hsv, you must provide evidence. To us, since you reported it here. But more importantly to the manufacturers since they are ultimately responsible for what they manufacture and market. You did not provide any evidence so far. What you are saying about these devices not being "thought through" and your intentions to ban them at your wall are profound "accusations" and can and will have an effect on how these devices are perceived by some if not many climbers, beginners and not, that read UKC. That's more people than you probably can imagine in the UK and outside of the UK. Please report your findings, with evidence, to the manufacturers. For the sake of that safety that you are trying to pursue.
>
> Ciao,
>
> Nicola Ciancaglini

Thanks for your comments. I will try to gather evidence to support this. Looking at some of the feedback, I think there is some evidence and concern. I'm not saying that there will be a sudden, life threatening and catastrophic failure as a result of using these devices; more a longer term, gradual damage, which doesn't occur as a result of other devices. And hence avoidable.
fil - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
I am looking for other evidence to support my belief and observations that they damage the karabiner.


Perhaps the fact that you haven't been inundated with evidence to support your claim means that you are, in fact, wrong.................

captain paranoia - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

I think my first question might be:

"Have you inspected every krab and every belay device used by your wall users?"

Because these devices can have nicks, dings and burrs that could also be causing damage to your ropes.

Or is it that you have suspected that the ClickUp and Smart are causing damage, so you started to inspect them, and have found damage on them?

This is intended as a straightforward question, and not intended to be leading, or making any pre-judged point. The only point I'm trying to make is, that if you only look for damage on one type of belay device, you will only find damage on one type of belay device...
cuppatea on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Do you really represent HSV or are you a disgruntled ex customer or staff member?

If you have evidence that a piece of equipment is dangerous it is your moral dury to inform the munufacturers.. What was the story with the Wild Country equipment?

This thread should be in The Pub by now.
GridNorth - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: One anonymous person has mentioned witnessing something without any specifics. Many more respected posters with good track records and reputations have said the opposite but you still maintain that "there is some evidence and concern". I'm afraid that you are now just coming across as one of those officious bureaucrats who make up rules and regulations just for the sake of it.
Marek - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
>
> I am looking for other evidence to support my belief ...

... and this is precisely where your approach lacks merit. Instead of taking a balanced view of all the evidence, you choose to only accept evidence which supports your belief. Are you a creationist by any chance?
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to captain paranoia:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> I think my first question might be:
>
> "Have you inspected every krab and every belay device used by your wall users?"

Where possible, I watch what equipment people are using (mostly in the competency assessments), but obviously don't micro-manage everything that happens on the wall.

> Because these devices can have nicks, dings and burrs that could also be causing damage to your ropes.

True. I'd like to think that climbers would look after their gear and not deliberately damage centre equipment.

> Or is it that you have suspected that the ClickUp and Smart are causing damage, so you started to inspect them, and have found damage on them?

Yes, you're right. But I think that climbers should appreciate that people are actually thinking about the equipment, rather than just blindly using it because it's available on the market and they like the feel of it.

> This is intended as a straightforward question, and not intended to be leading, or making any pre-judged point. The only point I'm trying to make is, that if you only look for damage on one type of belay device, you will only find damage on one type of belay device...

Good point, yes. Although I have discussed my suspicions about these devices with lots of people already. For example, I know that the Grigri and screwgate karabiners eat through each other. I have lots of examples of that, but the rope does not run over the karabiner with a Grigri, so it's not an issue. It is an issue if, for example, an HMS karabiner is used with a Grigri, then used on an ATC type device, which is why they should always be kept separate (screwgate for a grigri and HMS with ATC.)
In an ideal world, people would know to look after their equipment and check it, to make sure that it's fit for purpose.
Oceanrower - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: A quick google has shown up that Hertfordshire Sports Village has 8 top rope lines.

I work in a centre that has 102 lines and appx. half of those are top rope. In 15 months, I have probably seen 5 customers with click ups.

Not sure that this is such a huge problem for you.........
itsThere on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: Have you got any evidence what so ever, like a photo or two. This seems like an idea that is based on the fact that metal on metal may lead to wear and tear, causing damage to ropes. Yes this could be true, but what else could cause it. Is it that bad.

You seem to have found a problem and you now want to find evidence to match your hypothosis, but not any other evidence. Also without any control to check to see if your hypothosis was correct.

This is a fairly big accusation against climbing technology so I would have atleast a photo or two to back up my claims. This is a public forum and this thread can be found on google. With a little bit of creative searching, eg set the time to past 24h. But its there, for other people to see.
Oceanrower - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: And you only let people in for 90 minutes!!!!!!!!!!!

Surprised you have any customers at all to worry about it!
MJ - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Oceanrower:

Surprised you have any customers at all to worry about it!

With all this free advertising, they might get a few more!
ads.ukclimbing.com
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to MJ: but it's b-Advertising
MJ - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to itsThere:

This is a public forum and this thread can be found on google.

Google 'Climbing Technology Click Up causing rope damage' and this is the only thread that mentions actual damage.
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to MJ: An example of a time when I would be happy if Alan pulled the thread. Seem spurious to me.
Denni on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Having read the whole thread but never used one of these, do you mind me asking who bought these for your wall, why they bought them and what is their position? Ie are they a climber, a manager etc.

Not trying to dig around for any reason, just curious as to what reason they were bought in the first place as surely some research would have been done by someone before the purchase?

Cheers, Den
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to itsThere:
> (In reply to hsv) Have you got any evidence what so ever, like a photo or two. This seems like an idea that is based on the fact that metal on metal may lead to wear and tear, causing damage to ropes. Yes this could be true, but what else could cause it. Is it that bad.
>
> You seem to have found a problem and you now want to find evidence to match your hypothosis, but not any other evidence. Also without any control to check to see if your hypothosis was correct.
>
> This is a fairly big accusation against climbing technology so I would have atleast a photo or two to back up my claims. This is a public forum and this thread can be found on google. With a little bit of creative searching, eg set the time to past 24h. But its there, for other people to see.

Where better to research it than here?
jon on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

> For example, I know that the Grigri and screwgate karabiners eat through each other.

Bit of an exaggeration there. Scratch is nearer the mark. You are simply talking nonsense through complete ignorance ... or you are trolling.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Denni:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> Having read the whole thread but never used one of these, do you mind me asking who bought these for your wall, why they bought them and what is their position? Ie are they a climber, a manager etc.
>
> Not trying to dig around for any reason, just curious as to what reason they were bought in the first place as surely some research would have been done by someone before the purchase?
>
> Cheers, Den

Sorry, I'm not quite sure what you're referring to. The wall has not bought any of these devices. Several customers have been using them regularly on the wall for a while. Most of them are really happy with them.
drysori - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

I've been using a Smart for the last 4 years. I've never had any issue besides some minor scratches, certainly nothing that would damage a rope. In fact, I struggle to see where the sharp edges that would cause a dangerous nick actually are?

I don't doubt that it's possible to damage a carabiner with one in some way, but I doubt it's significantly more likely than any other device, and I would suggest that you stop fishing for evidence to support your view and look at the fact that plenty of people have reported back that they have no issue.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to jon:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> [...]
>
> Bit of an exaggeration there. Scratch is nearer the mark. You are simply talking nonsense through complete ignorance ... or you are trolling.

I'll take photos of the grigris and screwgates and post them. We are about to replace the grigris and screwgates with new ones very soon. The equipment gets a lot of use and over time they wear down. If you only use them a couple of times a week, then they will last a lot longer.
Denni on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

My apologies,
didn't quite read between the lines or/and didn't pay too much attention!

Why not have the customer sign off saying they are responsible for their actions using the device? Is your main concern litigation as you state most of the customers that use their own are happy with them or is the possible ban purely based on H and S?

What I would say is that as climbers we are all well aware of the risks and the majority of us do our research into what kit we buy with a lot of it coming from recommendations of fellow climbers and mostly here on UKC, for me anyway.

Why not do a survey on the climbers asking them to state if they use one what or indeed any, concerns they may have. You might get a better picture then which may alleviate any concerns you have, I would take the comments on this thread on board and use that as a start to a survey as it seems a lot of people are fairly knowledgeable about them.

I understand where you are coming from but a more subtle approach may have brought about a more constructive thread. Hope you get the answers you want.

Den
jon on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
Then your answer is simple. Provide steel screwgates for everyone. By the way, I use my gear a lot more than you think.
Murd on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I've been using a click up for over 18 months and though there is a sign of some wear on the biner there are no burrs or sharp edges that was cause any damage to a rope
r0x0r.wolfo - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv.

> Not quite sure how you would expect to attribute any damage directly to any one device on a centre rope which is used many times by different climbers using different devices on a daily basis. I could say that all of the fluffiness on the ropes is caused by climbers using these devices, but everyone would know that it can't be proven and is unlikely.

This is precisely what you need to do to justify any ban. You need to demonstrate a clear connection with this usage of this device and damage to your ropes. Maybe (ask very nicely) to inspect a few of your customers carabiners to see if there is noticeable burring on smart user's belay crabs. Not really bothered how you do it, but you jumped the gun here somewhat by being so close to banning something that yourself has not been able to adequately tie with any unique problems.
itsThere on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: This isnt research. I know we are all just some people on the internet, but there seems to be a fair consensus against your claim. Plus your yet to talk to climbing tech people about this or provide any proof. To me it seems like your fishing for an excuse to ban them withouth any fair consideration from a professional source.

Do you agree with me >> no >> I dont care then, next person
Pritchard - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

If someone turns up with said device and own/have nothing else, is your centre going to give use of other devices for free? And give free instruction in their use?

Craig.

andrewmcleod - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> I am garnering evidence to support my belief that these devices currently have a design flaw.

Belief is a dangerous thing.

What you should have is a hypothesis that these devices currently have a design flaw. Since you have acquired no evidence of significant damage in use, and the devices are provided by the manufacturer as safe, the reasonable thing to do is reject the hypothesis.
puppythedog on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to andrewmcleod: Maybe god did it?
john arran - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

You really haven't thought this through have you?
Sounds to me like you're concerned about people using damaged belay krabs so you're thinking about banning, against a tide of opinion, what you've decided is a possible cause.
What if you told someone they couldn't use a device so they simply used the same krab with an ATC instead?
Wouldn't it be far easier and better to simply ask to check krabs if you suspect they may be damaged?
That would be a risky strategy though since you might even find all the belay krabs you check are fine; then where would that leave your pet theory?
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to Murd:
> (In reply to hsv) I've been using a click up for over 18 months and though there is a sign of some wear on the biner there are no burrs or sharp edges that was cause any damage to a rope

Thanks for your input.
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to john arran:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> You really haven't thought this through have you?
> Sounds to me like you're concerned about people using damaged belay krabs so you're thinking about banning, against a tide of opinion, what you've decided is a possible cause.
> What if you told someone they couldn't use a device so they simply used the same krab with an ATC instead?

Yes, this is a real possibility. But hopefully climbers will realise the reason and not use a damaged krab.

> Wouldn't it be far easier and better to simply ask to check krabs if you suspect they may be damaged?

I have checked some and seen signs of damage, which is why I'm at this stage.
> That would be a risky strategy though since you might even find all the belay krabs you check are fine; then where would that leave your pet theory?
You may be right. I could be expecting to hear about lots of damage and actually see very little, which would help in the decision. What I am looking for is as much evidence as I can find to support my "hypothesis" of a flawed design. And this forum is probably the best place to collect this kind of information -unless anyone can suggest a better place?
ads.ukclimbing.com
MJ - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

And this forum is probably the best place to collect this kind of information -unless anyone can suggest a better place?

The Internet is vastly bigger than UKC. Have you tried Googling the two products in question and any associated rope damage?
Thus far and from UKC alone, what do you think the consensus is?
Neil Williams - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

I just checked my Grigri and krab and they have not "eaten each other". There is some wear, but no sharp bits. My Belay Master used with an ATC Guide is more worn.

Neil
jayjackson - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: Although I have used both devices, I've don't feel I've done so enough to provide evidence of wear.

I would suggest that, and no disrespect meant to any posters here, whilst UKC is a fantastic resource it may not be the best place to gather the data you are looking for - how can you judge the accuracy of posts?

Your wall's Technical Advisor would be a good person to speak to about this, as would the Association of British Climbing Walls, and the BMC.

http://www.abcclimbingwalls.co.uk/
https://www.thebmc.co.uk/cats/indoor%20climbing

I found a few phrases in your Climbing Wall Guidelines to be a little unusual - guess I only bring it up because this whole topic seems "a little unusual".
For instance...

15. Stand whilst belaying; no sitting or lying down (You may need to move in an emergency).

12. If you are lead climbing on a route where there is already an in-situ centre rope, clip your rope into the captive snap-gate karabiner at the top. Do not clip a rope in to both karabiners (this damages the karabiners).

18. Climbers should be aware of the risk of spinning or loose holds and bolt hangers and should therefore not be totally relied upon.

11. Check that the ropes are not twisted and avoid fast lower-offs. Do not practice falling whilst using the ropes (this often results in injury and damage to equipment).

Guidelines near the bottom on this page.
http://www.hertssportsvillage.co.uk/facilities/climbing-wall

JoshOvki on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Better ban the reverso 1 + 2 also. Metal retaining loops cause metal on metal contact!
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to jayjackson:
> (In reply to hsv) Although I have used both devices, I've don't feel I've done so enough to provide evidence of wear.

Thanks for your input

> I would suggest that, and no disrespect meant to any posters here, whilst UKC is a fantastic resource it may not be the best place to gather the data you are looking for - how can you judge the accuracy of posts?
>
> Your wall's Technical Advisor would be a good person to speak to about this, as would the Association of British Climbing Walls, and the BMC.

I am the Technical Advisor -Civil & Structural Engineer.


Thanks. I just feel that this is a large and widely experienced community to ask.

> I found a few phrases in your Climbing Wall Guidelines to be a little unusual - guess I only bring it up because this whole topic seems "a little unusual".
> For instance...
>
> 15. Stand whilst belaying; no sitting or lying down (You may need to move in an emergency).

Common sense? Kinda hard to move out of the way when someone drops a quickdraw if you're sitting or lying down.

> 12. If you are lead climbing on a route where there is already an in-situ centre rope, clip your rope into the captive snap-gate karabiner at the top. Do not clip a rope in to both karabiners (this damages the karabiners).

Manufacturers specify this! Unfortunately some climbing walls are oblivious to this and tell you to clip in to both karabiners. -rtfm.
Hangfast have just replaced damaged belay chains because people have done this. -got photos.

> 18. Climbers should be aware of the risk of spinning or loose holds and bolt hangers and should therefore not be totally relied upon.

In this age of litigation, this informs climbers of a risk.

> 11. Check that the ropes are not twisted and avoid fast lower-offs. Do not practice falling whilst using the ropes (this often results in injury and damage to equipment).

Self explanatory? (didn't have space to put them both on different lines.)

> Guidelines near the bottom on this page.
> http://www.hertssportsvillage.co.uk/facilities/climbing-wall

hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to JoshOvki:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> Better ban the reverso 1 + 2 also. Metal retaining loops cause metal on metal contact!

Good call :)
Petzl realised the issue and improved it by using wire on the reverso 3.
Maybe keep a separate krab for metal to metal contact mode?
r0x0r.wolfo - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I think the guidelines are fine.

Lets address the matter at hand shall we?
jkarran - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to captain paranoia:

> Or is it that you have suspected that the ClickUp and Smart are causing damage, so you started to inspect them, and have found damage on them?

I know my belay krabs have plenty of 'character' and I don't own or use either of the accused devices.

jk
hsv - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to jkarran:
> (In reply to captain paranoia)
>
> [...]
>
> I know my belay krabs have plenty of 'character' and I don't own or use either of the accused devices.
>
> jk

Hinting for a Christmas list?
jkarran - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Nah, I'll clean them up when they need it but if you want to get me a pressie a nice SDS drill or some Rayban Aviators would be ace :)

jk
Robert Durran - on 14 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

I used my Click-Up at the wall this evening. I've been doing so very regularly for about six months. In action, whem it "clicks up", the area of the alloy krab moving against the metal of the device isn't even the bit which the rope runs against under tension. On the bit of the krab which moves against metal there is very little sign of wear and certainly no sharp edges.

I can only speculate what your real motives are for inventing a problem, but you are certainly talking complete bollocks.

The Click-Up is a brilliant device.
jayjackson - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to jayjackson)

I agree there is a lot of knowledge out there on UKC - was just trying to be helpful by suggesting other places I would look for information too.

I would also visit lots of other venues - pick the brains of other Technical Advisors for their thoughts on this - I'm sure you could find walls that you are not directly competing with for custom would be more than happy to share thoughts on this. Are there any climbing qualifications for Tech Advisors that may supplement your Civil & Structural Engineer expereince?

re - belay standing
Would have thought the increased difficulty in locking off belay plates, reduced ability to give a dynamic belay were equally important reasons to belay from standing - just seemed odd this was the only reason given.

re - clipping both krabs/one krab on shared lead top rope lines.

"Manufacturers specify this! Unfortunately some climbing walls are oblivious to this and tell you to clip in to both karabiners. -rtfm.
> Hangfast have just replaced damaged belay chains because people have done this. -got photos."

Did not know this, something I will look into. Could you post the photos?
I always thought the issue was clipping into a krab where the moving lead rope was against the stationary toprope (possible friction issue) and irritation when pulling the lead rope brings the toprope down with it.


re spinning holds etc

Reads to me that the bolt hangers should not be relied upon - maybe just the way I'm reading it - fully agree that holds cannot be totally relied upon.

re - practice falling

Seems a strange rule for insitu topropes - surely correct belaying would mean that repeated falling on topropes would cause very little injury or damage to equipment? Clip drop practice obviously a different matter - but assuming this not what you mean since you state "using the ropes" to mean the wall's top ropes.
>
...hmmm, have just written the above and now had to google "-rtfm".

You ask on a public forum for opinion, you seem to discount or ignore any opinions that don't agree with your own. I offer some thoughts and query some parts of your guidelines that seem odd (I guess I should have put in further explanations as to why I found them so, my appologies) and you can't keep the responce civil.

Was just trying to highlight that the belay plate ban is at odds with the general practice of UK walls; some of your guidelines also seem to be, not at odds, but a maybe a little different to many other UK walls - I guess I was just trying to make the point that you could look into the indoor wall industry as well - there's lots of knowledge out there that may be of use to your wall (if you listen to it, rather than just discounting any evidence that disproves your hypothesis of course).
caver - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Could you expand on how clipping into both karabiners damages the karabiners.
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to caver:
> (In reply to hsv)
>
> Could you expand on how clipping into both karabiners damages the karabiners.

A bit off topic, but I'll post photos.
Basically when there is a captive screwgate and snapgate sharing the same ring on a Y hanger chain, the rivots which join the gate to the krab, and other parts, cut in to each other if both krabs are clipped at the same time and lowered off on.
There is another problem, as mentioned above, with lead ropes being clipped in to the same krab as the top rope. The reason for having two krabs at the top, is to provide a separate krab for a lead climber to clip in to instead.
jayjackson - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to caver:
rtfm apparently!
Oceanrower - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to caver)
> [...]
>
>
> Basically when there is a captive screwgate and snapgate sharing the same ring on a Y hanger chain, the rivots which join the gate to the krab, and other parts, cut in to each other if both krabs are clipped at the same time and lowered off on.
>

Absolute, complete and utter bollocks!

Ropes rubbing together as mentioned above is valid but your explanation is laughable.
Oceanrower - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: Although congratulations are definitely in order.

It's been a long time since I've seen the UKC massive in complete agreement on a subject!
Simon2005 on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I've read through this thread a couple of times just to check over what you are saying and I have come to the conclusion that your approach is simply bad science. I say this because you have your view of the cause and are only looking for evidence to support your view. ie.
"I am garnering evidence to support my belief that these devices currently have a design flaw." and "I am looking for other evidence to support my belief and observations that they damage the karabiner." A more open mind to the possible causes of rope damage might reveal something completely different.
deepsoup - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to jayjackson:
> I would suggest that, and no disrespect meant to any posters here, whilst UKC is a fantastic resource it may not be the best place to gather the data you are looking for - how can you judge the accuracy of posts?

In the OP's case it's really easy - anything that reinforces his entrenched opinion is correct whereas anything that doesn't is wrong and can be safely ignored.
paul__in_sheffield - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: to a certain extent this kind of thing rankles because of the adventurous nature of climbing outside, use whatever/no kit you want.
If you use walls outside of the UK, then requirements are often far more stringent. My experience in Australia is in-situ ground connected top ropes and grigris on each line, so you clip your harness in to ready connected kit. The walls I've been to seem to have also very specific rules about hand placements and position for taking in/ lowering off.
I've also come across lots of walls in Canada and the Far East where the GriGri is the only allowed device for lead or top rope.
Bizarrely I came across a wall in the states where the Figure of 8 was the weapon of choice for a wall, non negotiable
However, in all the above, the motivation whether justified or not was to reduce human error. Whether or not you think the GriGri is the holy grail for this is covered on (many) other threads. The bottom line is that in over 30 years of using walls, I have never seen any evidence of hardware induced accidents, but there have been plenty of human error accidents. My advice for HSV would be to concentrate on making sure everyone keeps their hands on the rope etc. but at the end of the day if he feels the Use of the Click Up is going have 3rd party liability, then it's his commercial call, no matter how unjustified.
ads.ukclimbing.com
fil - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

On the other hand, go to a wall in Europe...........

"We'd like to climb"

"Sure, That'll be 10 euro, carry on."

No paper work, no questions!

cuppatea on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH)
> [...]
>
> Ok, thanks. I'll look at drafting a comment to them.
> This "bizarre response" is following a previous incident when contacting Wild Country over another issue which caused a near fatal accident.

What was the Wild Country issue? Was there a recall?

paul__in_sheffield - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to fil:
> (In reply to paul__in_sheffield)
>
> On the other hand, go to a wall in Europe...........

+1
That wall in Chamonix at Les Houches I think, rainy day, guide's clients pulling up on your quick draws while you're leading, setting off on routes while someone is still seconding, it's almost like climbing outdoors at Les Gaillands ;-)
top fun though

hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to cuppatea:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
> What was the Wild Country issue? Was there a recall?

I gave a polite heads up regarding a potential comeback from Environmental Health, following an incident involving misuse of a piece of their equipment, only to be given a somewhat blunt response of denial.
I will not be discussing this further here, sorry.
victim of mathematics - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:
> However, in all the above, the motivation whether justified or not was to reduce human error. Whether or not you think the GriGri is the holy grail for this is covered on (many) other threads. The bottom line is that in over 30 years of using walls, I have never seen any evidence of hardware induced accidents, but there have been plenty of human error accidents. My advice for HSV would be to concentrate on making sure everyone keeps their hands on the rope etc.

For me this is a key point. Banning these devices is not a 'zero-cost' exercise. Even ignoring the fact that you might hack customers off, the fact remains that if you force somebody to stop using the belay device they're used to, you increase the chance of human error. Especially when you're likely to make them go from a device with more back-up to one with less. So what is the additional 'cost' to the wall of one additional person being dropped? I'd expect it's fairly high once you include aspects like negative publicity that might result. So how much extra wear do you have to observe on your ropes before that becomes the greater cost?
Neil Williams - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to jayjackson:

I find this one:-

"18. Climbers should be aware of the risk of spinning or loose holds and bolt hangers and should therefore not be totally relied upon."

a bit odd, because you are supposed to be able to rely on the bolts on an artificial wall when leading. Yes, they might move (this doesn't matter provided you clip them in the usual way), but they should absolutely not fail. There are not many things I would consider sueing a wall for, as IMO most of what goes on is my own responsibility, but a foreseeable failure of a bolt or other fixed safety equipment being used as intended causing me serious injury *is* one of them.

Spinning holds is of course a given, which is one good reason why you need the fixed safety equipment not to fail!

Neil
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to deepsoup:
> (In reply to jayjackson)
> [...]
>
> In the OP's case it's really easy - anything that reinforces his entrenched opinion is correct whereas anything that doesn't is wrong and can be safely ignored.

Everyone's input is helpful and valid and not being ignored, thanks. Snide comments are not helpful though. It's great that many of you are saying that in your experience, there are no problems, but as I've mentioned several times, I am looking for anyone who HAS experienced problems. And no matter how small these problems are, there have been climbers mentioning that they have noticed signs of damage, which is just as valid feedback as the apparent majority not having any problems. The equipment may have just been used in different ways or environments. Just because my interest is focused on other climbers experience, does not detract from your experience. I hope you can try to understand that.
jon on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Two things that you could do to help your case immensely:
Fill in your profile.
Post up your photos of the damaged karabiners.
climbwhenready - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

As you're trying to find out about how something in this universe works, you're trying to do a scientific analysis. However, you're trying to use methods that we decided were ineffective in about the 1800s.

As a scientist, this makes me sad. I *know* what happens when I approach questions in this way. The conclusion is wrong.
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to victim of mathematics:
> (In reply to paul__in_sheffield)
> [...]
>
> For me this is a key point. Banning these devices is not a 'zero-cost' exercise. Even ignoring the fact that you might hack customers off, the fact remains that if you force somebody to stop using the belay device they're used to, you increase the chance of human error. Especially when you're likely to make them go from a device with more back-up to one with less.

I don't consider them to be beginner devices and I would expect that most people will have learn on an ATC type device or possibly a grigri and understand the basic principals of belaying. So I would expect that their ability would cover being able to use another device competently. Or they could seek further instruction?

>So what is the additional 'cost' to the wall of one additional person being dropped? I'd expect it's fairly high once you include aspects like negative publicity that might result. So how much extra wear do you have to observe on your ropes before that becomes the greater cost?

The aim is to reduce potential damage to the ropes, which is a good thing. I'm sure that climbers would rather use ropes that have not become fluffy and unmanageable.
If ropes have to be replaced more frequently, there is a knock on effect to customers to replace them. So this is in the best interest of the climber, especially on a small, non-dedicated climbing centre. If you want shiny new ropes more frequently, then the cost of climbing will go through the roof.
victim of mathematics - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> And no matter how small these problems are, there have been climbers mentioning that they have noticed signs of damage, which is just as valid feedback as the apparent majority not having any problems.

As far as I can tell, one user near the start of the thread posted some vague pejorative comment about the device, but nobody has reported any damage to the karabiner which might damage a rope. That's your evidence?

Bayes might have something to say about the strength of your prior though.

Neil Williams - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

"The aim is to reduce potential damage to the ropes, which is a good thing. I'm sure that climbers would rather use ropes that have not become fluffy and unmanageable.
If ropes have to be replaced more frequently, there is a knock on effect to customers to replace them."

You've yet to produce any evidence that it is damaging the ropes, though. How about as others have said posting photos of the damaged karabiners so we can see if we think they would damage ropes? I'm confident that my GriGri krab, while a bit worn, wouldn't.

Neil
victim of mathematics - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

> I don't consider them to be beginner devices and I would expect that most people will have learn on an ATC type device or possibly a grigri and understand the basic principals of belaying. So I would expect that their ability would cover being able to use another device competently. Or they could seek further instruction?
>

Understanding the basic principles of belaying is one thing, 100% eradicating user error is quite another. Being faced with an ATC when you're used to belaying with something like a Click-Up clearly opens up a greater possibility of user error. Even if the increased risk is very small, the cost is high.

> The aim is to reduce potential damage to the ropes, which is a good thing. I'm sure that climbers would rather use ropes that have not become fluffy and unmanageable.
> If ropes have to be replaced more frequently, there is a knock on effect to customers to replace them. So this is in the best interest of the climber, especially on a small, non-dedicated climbing centre. If you want shiny new ropes more frequently, then the cost of climbing will go through the roof.

Erm, yes, I understand your concern, I just think it's a) misplaced because you have no evidence for it and b) daft, because the negative impact of your proposed ban is plausibly greater than the benefit that you perceive (i.e. replacing ropes less frequently).

Guy - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to captain paranoia)
> [...]
>

>
> [...]
>
> True. I'd like to think that climbers would look after their gear and not deliberately damage centre equipment.
>

Your concern is to prevent damage to ropes due to worn carabiners.

Your premise is that Click Up and Smart devices are likely to cause this damage so a ban should be introduced for these devices.

You state that you like to believe that everyone wants to look after the centre equipment.

Yet you think those using Click Up and Smart devices would think differently? Surely they would also change their carabiners if they found them to have nicks, gouges etc?

Therefore your issue is not with the Click Up and Smart devices but with anybody who uses a poor carabiner.

Your logic seems highly suspect through out this.


davidbeynon - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to victim of mathematics:

If your prior is 1 you don't need evidence.
johncook - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: What has been the response from the maunfacturers. They will ask for your evidence, and, in my experience will then proceed to exhaustive testing to try to replicate the problem. They never, as far as I have experience, ignore any possible problem that may compromise safety.
Have the BMC been asked, or the "association of climbing walls operators" (not sure of their exact title, but I assume, as a climbing wall, your place is a fully paid up memeber?
As a scientist I find your approach strange and a couple of my mechanical engineer friends feel the same.
I am not here to flame you, just trying to rationalise your approach.
I have never used either of these devices but have found that all indoor ropes deteriorate quite quickly whatever belay devices are used, because of the repeated lowering off and the ropes not having time to recover.
There are two reasons you don't clip both carabiners;
1/If there is already a top rope through one or both, the active lowering rope will rub against the stationary rope (whether it is in the same carabiner or in the other but touching the first, as they tend to do.) and cause quite severe damage by friction in one place on the stationary rope, leading to possible failure.
2/ Clipping both carabiners causes eccentric wear on them, then when someone clips only one, the rope can get cut. There was a climber killed, last year I think, when his rope was cut by an eccentrically worn carabiner.
Good luck with your research, but try to base it on empirical facts, rather than opinions. Collect all the information from your experience, photographic, material, anecdotal (not the best evidence) etc. Submit it to the manufacturers/BMC equipment people and let others make the decisions for you. Then it is a real choice, not just a personal hypothesis looking for back-up, but ignoring things that don't prove it.
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to Guy:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
> [...]
>
> Your concern is to prevent damage to ropes due to worn carabiners.

Yes.

> Your premise is that Click Up and Smart devices are likely to cause this damage so a ban should be introduced for these devices.

Yes.

> You state that you like to believe that everyone wants to look after the centre equipment.

Yes.

> Yet you think those using Click Up and Smart devices would think differently?

Hopefully not, no. IF they are causing damage and they don't realise it then it's not intentional, but avoidable.

>Surely they would also change their carabiners if they found them to have nicks, gouges etc?

Again, if they did not realise or check their equipment, then they would not realise. If nothing else comes of this, I would be happy if people just checked their equipment a bit more often and thoroughly. Some of you have mentioned that you went to check your karabiners, which is a good start. Someone even mentioned that their gear was trashed ("Character") but didn't seem too concerned.

> Therefore your issue is not with the Click Up and Smart devices but with anybody who uses a poor carabiner.

Obviously there is an issue with climbers using damaged karabiners, but the specific concern is that the design of these devices lead to damage of the karabiner.

> Your logic seems highly suspect through out this.

Sorry that you don't follow my reasoning.

For those of you who think that the tiny little marks on your krabs are ok, have a little look at this video from DMM:
http://dmmclimbing.com/news/2011/11/carabiners-and-potential-rope-damage-vid/
yesbutnobutyesbut - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: No one has said marks are ok on your krabs. Everyone that uses a Smart or Click up has said that these devices are not causing such marks.
You've had engineers, mountain guides and world respected climbers comment on this thread and all are doubting your opinions.

If I was your employer and read this thread I'd seriously question your credentials to be in charge of equipment at a climbing wall.
johncook - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
but the specific concern is that the design of these devices lead to damage of the karabiner.

I am sure the manufacturers and the many users take good care of their gear (I admit that I have seen a very few people who don't) If I found a design fault was causing damage to my gear I would GET REAL EVIDENCE to support it and then talk to the manufacturer.
As a percentage the number of these two devices compared to all the others is quite small. If the damage is being caused by this very small number it will be easy to segregate them out by photographing the damaged rope and the damaged carabiner that caused it. Ropes go fluffy and flat in a gym, whatever belay device is used.
If these devices are damaging the carabiner sufficiently to damage the rope, due to a design fault, the owners of said devices will be more than pleased to have an heads up and will also report back to the retailer and/or manufacturer.
I put my life in the hands of my belayer and gear. I need to trust both so listen to all reports of problems and do follow-up research.
The more I read this thread, three times now, the more I think you have a personal axe to grind against certain manufacturers! I may be wrong, but that is my perception and that of friends.
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to johncook:
> (In reply to hsv) What has been the response from the maunfacturers. They will ask for your evidence, and, in my experience will then proceed to exhaustive testing to try to replicate the problem. They never, as far as I have experience, ignore any possible problem that may compromise safety.
> Have the BMC been asked, or the "association of climbing walls operators" (not sure of their exact title, but I assume, as a climbing wall, your place is a fully paid up memeber?
> As a scientist I find your approach strange and a couple of my mechanical engineer friends feel the same.
> I am not here to flame you, just trying to rationalise your approach.
> I have never used either of these devices but have found that all indoor ropes deteriorate quite quickly whatever belay devices are used, because of the repeated lowering off and the ropes not having time to recover.
> There are two reasons you don't clip both carabiners;
> 1/If there is already a top rope through one or both, the active lowering rope will rub against the stationary rope (whether it is in the same carabiner or in the other but touching the first, as they tend to do.) and cause quite severe damage by friction in one place on the stationary rope, leading to possible failure.
> 2/ Clipping both carabiners causes eccentric wear on them, then when someone clips only one, the rope can get cut. There was a climber killed, last year I think, when his rope was cut by an eccentrically worn carabiner.

Which was human error, by not checking the equipment before use.

> Good luck with your research, but try to base it on empirical facts, rather than opinions. Collect all the information from your experience, photographic, material, anecdotal (not the best evidence) etc. Submit it to the manufacturers/BMC equipment people and let others make the decisions for you. Then it is a real choice, not just a personal hypothesis looking for back-up, but ignoring things that don't prove it.

Thanks for you advice. After observing the use of these devices for some time, and witnessing the damage to karabiners, and discussing it with the users, I chose ukc as my next step to gather evidence from the wider community who actually use the equipment. The aim is to get people to examine their equipment and identify any signs of damage as a result of using these devices.
Some climbers have take offence and made their own conclusions based on their own evidence and belief (which I have not "ignored".) I, on the other hand, am trying to gather evidence from others who MAY have experienced problems.
Neil Williams - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

It took 5 seconds of watching that to notice that the marks that caused the failure were quite severe, obvious damage, not "little marks", in any case. Rope wear itself causes "little marks".

Neil
Neil Williams - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

"I, on the other hand, am trying to gather evidence from others who MAY have experienced problems."

So far, you seem not to have succeeded in that attempt, at least on here. Does that tell you something?

Neil
SteveRi - on 15 Nov 2013
Oof, they need sacking now do they? However misguided you might think, our poster has kept their dignity in the face of the herd. They've not banned anything, they have concerns and are merely asking for information. I doubt they're doing it for a laugh :)
jkarran - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

> Again, if they did not realise or check their equipment, then they would not realise. If nothing else comes of this, I would be happy if people just checked their equipment a bit more often and thoroughly. Some of you have mentioned that you went to check your karabiners, which is a good start. Someone even mentioned that their gear was trashed ("Character") but didn't seem too concerned.

I'm not at all concerned and it's not trashed. Most kit that's well used outside of the confines of a padded room accumulates wear and tear - character.

> For those of you who think that the tiny little marks on your krabs are ok, have a little look at this video from DMM:
> http://dmmclimbing.com/news/2011/11/carabiners-and-potential-rope-damage-vid/

Those aren't tiny marks, they're obvious and pretty bad bolt nicks.
jk
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to SteveRi:
> Oof, they need sacking now do they? However misguided you might think, our poster has kept their dignity in the face of the herd. They've not banned anything, they have concerns and are merely asking for information. I doubt they're doing it for a laugh :)

Thanks for your support. It's brave to put your head above the parapet. Some may feel that I have not gone about this in quite the same way that they would have done, but I don't have the luxury of time and resources to do lots of testing personally. It is based on real concerns about safety equipment. I've seen how people like to do battle on these forums, which is their choice; I don't have a problem with that. I still think that with patience, I will get results. Just because a lot of people have an opinion, it doesn't make it right. Any anecdotal evidence from here can lead to further investigation.
Guy - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: There is no argument that using a krab with little marks etc is bad for ropes but there is also no evidence so far that these devices are causing any either. One bit of hearsay is not evidence.
johncook - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: The equipment that the climber did not checkwas at a climbing wall IIRC.
You have asked for peoples observations on the damage. Several users of these particular devices admitted to going and checking their gear and found no damage.
The evidence you have collected from your wall should be submitted emmidiately to the manufacturer and the BMC gear bods. If they do cause damage to the rope and an accident results will you be able to live with yourself. You appear to be telling us that you have been observing this damage for sometime and have evidence that corroborates your hypothesis. SUBMIT IT for assessment and/or peer review. If it is as serious as you are leading us to believe you have a duty to report it, with evidence, before someone gets hurt.
A simple message. I am not arguing whether you are right or wrong, just stating what is your moral duty.
The Grist - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: If I came to your centre and was told that I could not use my smart belay device on the centre ropes I would be a little perturbed to say the least. I would expect the centre to provide me with an alternative free of charge.

As someone who has been climbing 20 years I have used most of the devices on the market including a gri gri, ATC, click up and fadars sum. I have found the smart to be by far my favourite device. Having used it for 3 years I can not see how it has damaged my ropes or my centre's ropes.

I think you are over reacting and are actually wrong in your analysis of the so called damage. I will make a mental note not to go to your centre.
jon on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

> I still think that with patience, I will get results...

... that I want.
Neil Williams - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Now make sure you report it to the manufacturers. If it isn't safe on your wall, it isn't safe anywhere.

Neil
alastairbegley - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

It is a fundamentally different situation having damage on a quickdraw krab. When you fall off on lead the rope runs very quickly over the krab under a high dynamic load. Around the belay device the rope will move less due to being locked by the belay device. While I will grant you lowering off causes the rope to move across the krab while loaded, the forces involved and the speed involved are alot less than in a lead fall.
CurlyStevo - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
"Just because a lot of people have an opinion, it doesn't make it right"

Just because you have a completely unproved opinion it also doesn't make it right. Before you ban these devices I think you should atleast provide some real evidence.

Have you found a single HMS that has been damaged by these devices in such a way it could cause rope wear? People have posted up on this thread showing their HMS biners have not been damaged by them, until you provide some evidence otherwise I think its fair to assume these devices do not damage HMS biners.

Have you found a rope to be furry in less time than it should where you can directly attribute this to these devices (ie no other devices have been used) ?

Without providing some of the above you are simply acting on an unfounded hunch. Do you really beleive that the manufacturers didn't properly test these devices prior to putting them on the market?

BStar - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

After reading the entire thread I felt like I should post something.

I have been climbing on the Mammut Smart for 1 year now both indoors and outdoors. For you evidence gathering exercise I have to say that my krab shows no dissimilar wear to my bug and belay master combo that I used for the previous year.

I understand your concern, and yes, metal on metal then back to rope is generally a concern in climbing where we all try to avoid 'cross contamination'. However I believe you are missing a fundamental element in the equation: Force

The reason for not using krabs for metal on metal then rope is that the force generated on a lead fall can be quite high, causing the thin, coarse wire from the nut to potentially cut into the krab. Now let's put that into context of your climbing wall. A standard 80kg climbing and belayers will produce around 0.8kN of force on each end of the rope on a fairly static fall. Mammut smart does come into contact with the krab but it is still free to move, the rope is tight on the krab but the device only sits there. There is no real force in the Smart hitting into the krab, I would say this is no different from putting all of your gear in your bag and it all jangling (technical term) about together.
Rob Parsons on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to SteveRi:

> Oof, they need sacking now do they? However misguided you might think, our poster has kept their dignity in the face of the herd.

I was going to say much the same thing. The herd-like, bear-baiting replies
which show up in threads like this is pathetic.
Luke90 on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

For the record, I was sceptical of whether this poster actually worked for a centre and thought he might just be trolling. I emailed the centre and have had emails back that make it very clear that he does work for the centre and does run the climbing wall.
caver - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to caver)
> [...]
>
> A bit off topic, but I'll post photos.
> Basically when there is a captive screwgate and snapgate sharing the same ring on a Y hanger chain, the rivots which join the gate to the krab, and other parts, cut in to each other if both krabs are clipped at the same time and lowered off on.
> There is another problem, as mentioned above, with lead ropes being clipped in to the same krab as the top rope. The reason for having two krabs at the top, is to provide a separate krab for a lead climber to clip in to instead.


In reply to hsv

This does cause a tiny amount of wear but it does not compromise the karabiners. As you have mentioned the company HRT this means that the anchor elements will be steel or more likely stainless steel. There are a number of forces working here but we can keep it simple. There is point loading where any proud rivet heads are pressed into the adjoining karabiner by the squeezing force of the rope; and lateral movements, This is the slight 'jiggling' of the two karabiners rubbing together caused by the movement of the running rope. After a while the rivet head may create a small seat for itself in the adjoining karabinner which limits the lateral movement. Exposed rivet heads are not proud enough to cause sufficient damage to compromise the karabiner. Moreover; whilst the rivet head may be eroded it will not lose sufficient to allow it to fall or be forced from its location hole.

There are three common choices for attaching the rope to the anchor point:
A single snap gate karabiner. Strength wise this is sufficient but there are two possible methods of failure. It is possible for the rope to get into a position where it runs across the exterior of the gate and then under pressure be pulled through releasing the rope from the karabiner. This is very unlikely as it requires the climber to be above the anchor point. More likely and has happened; a novice or inexperienced climber following someone who has led the climb will unclip the rope from all the karabiners as they climb...including the last one on the anchor point. They know no better and it's just another single snap gate to them. Wall managers are aware of this. The second choice of two opposed snapgates virtually eliminates this second error. The third choice is to have a snap gate and screwgate. Many of us have reached the anchor to find the insitu screwgate difficult to undo. The snapgate allows you clip in and then sort out opening the screwgate.

In one of your posts you write that you are acting as the Technical Advisor to the wall. As such you should know this information. Either you are a troll or you should question whether you are the right person for this role until you have broadened your knowledge base.
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to caver:
> (In reply to hsv)
> [...]
>
>
> In reply to hsv
>
> This does cause a tiny amount of wear but it does not compromise the karabiners. As you have mentioned the company HRT this means that the anchor elements will be steel or more likely stainless steel. There are a number of forces working here but we can keep it simple. There is point loading where any proud rivet heads are pressed into the adjoining karabiner by the squeezing force of the rope; and lateral movements, This is the slight 'jiggling' of the two karabiners rubbing together caused by the movement of the running rope. After a while the rivet head may create a small seat for itself in the adjoining karabinner which limits the lateral movement. Exposed rivet heads are not proud enough to cause sufficient damage to compromise the karabiner. Moreover; whilst the rivet head may be eroded it will not lose sufficient to allow it to fall or be forced from its location hole.

Not sure that anyone mentioned HRT.
I have uploaded the photos and waiting for their approval. They will be in the Climbing Wall gallery.

> There are three common choices for attaching the rope to the anchor point:
> A single snap gate karabiner. Strength wise this is sufficient but there are two possible methods of failure. It is possible for the rope to get into a position where it runs across the exterior of the gate and then under pressure be pulled through releasing the rope from the karabiner. This is very unlikely as it requires the climber to be above the anchor point. More likely and has happened; a novice or inexperienced climber following someone who has led the climb will unclip the rope from all the karabiners as they climb...including the last one on the anchor point. They know no better and it's just another single snap gate to them. Wall managers are aware of this. The second choice of two opposed snapgates virtually eliminates this second error. The third choice is to have a snap gate and screwgate. Many of us have reached the anchor to find the insitu screwgate difficult to undo. The snapgate allows you clip in and then sort out opening the screwgate.
>
> In one of your posts you write that you are acting as the Technical Advisor to the wall. As such you should know this information. Either you are a troll or you should question whether you are the right person for this role until you have broadened your knowledge base.

Yes, you are absolutely right. I didn't make it clear that that some of the chains are at the top of walls where there is already a centre rope in the captive screwgate -which was the reasoning behind getting our original single captive screwgate karabiner replaced with the combined captive screwgate and snapgate. I just didn't go it to a long in-depth explanation because it is a bit off topic, sorry.
hsv - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to Rob Parsons:
> (In reply to SteveRi)
>
> [...]
>
> I was going to say much the same thing. The herd-like, bear-baiting replies
> which show up in threads like this is pathetic.

Thanks. I AM trying to do this for good reasons. I appreciate everyone's feedback (for and against) and their evidence and experiences; would be nice to get them without some of the hostility :) Sorry if anyone feels I've done anything horrific towards them.
caver - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
> (In reply to caver)
> [...]
>
> Not sure that anyone mentioned HRT.

My mistake, it was Hangfast not HRT.

>
> Yes, you are absolutely right. I didn't make it clear that that some of the chains are at the top of walls where there is already a centre rope in the captive screwgate -which was the reasoning behind getting our original single captive screwgate karabiner replaced with the combined captive screwgate and snapgate. I just didn't go it to a long in-depth explanation because it is a bit off topic, sorry.

Just to clarify, You are not suggesting a V hang anchor chain with a captive screwgate and snapgate in the same ring. Then having the centre rope in the screwgate and leaving the snap gate alone for climbers to clip in their own rope. Rather, the centre rope will be in a separate screwgate away from these two karabiners.

deepsoup - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to Luke90:
I wondered if he was trolling too. Perhaps a disgruntled customer trying to make the place look stupid. As he's genuine, he really should have a commercial profile.
rgold - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

I don't buy the hypothesis and my two-year continual use of an Alpine Up (the double-rope version of the Click-Up) reveals nothing beyond cosmetic scratches, and these in locations that are not on the rope-bearing surfaces and are probably due to smacking the device against the rock in corners and chimneys while climbing.

The reason I don't buy the hypothesis is that, although the metal part functions as a keeper, it isn't ever loaded by rope forces. In fact, rope tension draws the carabiner up and away from the metal keeper edge, thereby unloading the metal part and so actually preventing gouging. My belay carabiner confirms this. Of course after two years there is the beginnings of some polished grooving from rappelling, the same as you would get from any device used for rappelling. But there isn't even a scratch indicating gouging by the keeper, which, as I've said, is not a surprise.

The potentially dangerous gouging one sometimes sees in the bolt end of sport-climbing quickdraws occurs because the those carabiners are heavily loaded against the bolt edge by falls and hangdogging. Nothing analogous happens with the Click-Up (or the Smart, I think).

As far as I can tell, you have a single person who reports some damage with someone else's gear and a chorus, if not an avalanche, of people who have said they have observed no problem. Add to this the fact that there is nothing in the way the devices function that could cause such damage and you have, if you care to put any stock in your sampling, overwhelming evidence for rejecting the idea that these devices might harm the rope.
Andy Cairns on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
>
> For example, I know that the Grigri and screwgate karabiners eat through each other.

OK, I'll add my tuppence worth to the evidence, though I don't suppose it will make the slightest difference to the conclusion you're looking for!

Taking the Mammut Smart first, I've been using one since they first came out, and have used it enough to retire 2 belay krabs due to wear! That wear consisted of a smooth groove worn in each krab due to the loaded rope running directly over it, as with any belay device (eg ATC, Click-Up) where the rope doesn't run completely within the device such as a Grigri. With both krabs there was absolutely no sign of any nicks or other marks caused by the metal of the Smart being in contact with the krab. It's a great device and I have no concerns about using it.

Your statement I take most issue with is the one quoted above re the Grigri eating through krabs! My wife and I use a Grigri a lot - wall sessions twice a week, and about 20 weeks sport climbing abroad each year. We've had that grigri since they first came out (how long's that??), and it's always been used with a Clog Twistlock HMS which is now at least 20 years old. Neither is showing the slightest bit of wear or damage of the type you seem to indicate above, although the grigri is now showing signs of wear on the internal and external surfaces the rope runs over. Nothing to worry about - just some nice polish!

Thankfully, I've got wall cards for about 15 walls, and regularly use about 8, none of which are anywhere as near restrictive as yours, so I won't have to worry about whether I'd be allowed through your doors with my lethal belay devices.

Cheers
Andy
jon on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to rgold:

I don't own either of these devices, but it looks to me that the places where the two aluminium cheeks come into contact with the karabiner are either side of where the rope runs. Now, if that's the case then the rope cannot come in contact with any part of the krab that has been 'damaged' by the device as it will always find the same place to run in the krab - due to the shape of the krab. Indeed, this is the reason for the rope groove forming in a krab.
Christheclimber - on 15 Nov 2013
In reply to jon:

I've been using a Smart for the last couple of months indoors and outside, it has had some hammer in this time. I checked my belay krab for wear today. No wear or damage at all.
GridNorth - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I paid very close attention to the behaviour of my Smart and belay karabiner at the wall last night and have now come to the conclusion that there is nothing to worry about with this particular device. Indeed, when it is loaded, the edges which you seem to think are causing wear are in fact pulled away from the krab. I have however noticed that the rope wear on the krab appears to be more than I would have expected and there will come a time when this could be an issue. I think this is due to softer materials in manufacture and perhaps and I emphasise the perhaps the fact that the rope is concentrated in one specific area. This is probably also an issue with the captive krabs like the BD Gridlock which prevent the krab rotating. I have been using a Petzl AMD which minimises cross loading and allows the rope to settle at either end. I seem to recall reading somewhere that this is now Petzls favoured set up instead of an HMS krab.
jon on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to GridNorth:

> I have however noticed that the rope wear on the krab appears to be more than I would have expected and there will come a time when this could be an issue. I think this is due to softer materials in manufacture and perhaps and I emphasise the perhaps the fact that the rope is concentrated in one specific area. This is probably also an issue with the captive krabs like the BD Gridlock which prevent the krab rotating.

Well of course this is an issue with ANY krab regardless of shape - or whether it's a captive type krab. The geometry of the krab will determine exactly where the rope will run and therefore where the wear will occur. So there's absolutely no escaping this type of wear.
GridNorth - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to jon: I agree which is why I mentioned the Petzl AMD. I think it's mainly down to using softer alloys in order to cut weight. I don't recall this being a particular issue in the past it seems to be a relatively recent phenomena.
jon on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to GridNorth:

Perhaps also the type of climbing we do now and the more intense use of equipment. When all we did was trad climbing (before it was called trad climbing) and walked down instead of abseiling, ropes and krabs lasted for ever!
GridNorth - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to jon: Long live the waist belay. :-)
ice.solo - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to jon:
> (In reply to GridNorth)
>
> Perhaps also the type of climbing we do now and the more intense use of equipment. When all we did was trad climbing (before it was called trad climbing) and walked down instead of abseiling, ropes and krabs lasted for ever!

yeah but werent they also made of steel back then?
jon on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to ice.solo:

Well the ropes weren't! We, on the other hand, were!
Point is though that sport climbing is so much more brutal on equipment than trad climing. There's no getting away from it - gear will get worn out and will have to be replaced.
GridNorth - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to ice.solo: Way back they were indeed made of steel, but I have karabiners in the cupboard which are alloy and been used extensively but are not showing the same deep grooves as modern ones.
Anna Hammond - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to Oceanrower:
> (In reply to hsv) And you only let people in for 90 minutes!!!!!!!!!!!
>
> Surprised you have any customers at all to worry about it!

Yes the paid amount at HSV is for 90 minutes, customers are allowed to stay in for as long as they wish unless it is crowded. Another point i think is that HSV accommodates a large number of university students to operate their club on these walls and so the safety of the ropes is of upmost importance which is why I can see HSV's concerns.
On the main topic of this descussion however I do not wish to involve myself.
victim of mathematics - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to Anna Hammond:
> (In reply to Oceanrower)
> [...]
>
> Yes the paid amount at HSV is for 90 minutes, customers are allowed to stay in for as long as they wish unless it is crowded. Another point i think is that HSV accommodates a large number of university students to operate their club on these walls and so the safety of the ropes is of upmost importance which is why I can see HSV's concerns.

Why does it being students make the blindest it of difference to the importance of the safety of the ropes?
jon on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to Anna Hammond:

> HSV accommodates a large number of university students to operate their club on these walls and so the safety of the ropes is of upmost importance

What?
yesbutnobutyesbut - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to Anna Hammond: Almost every major wall in the country has groups of students using them. Your post makes no sense whatsoever.
will - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Being a manager of a climbing facility myself, of whom happens to be a Mammut branded one. We have alot of customers of whom use the Smart on a regular basis.
Since this device has come into play i have not seen anymore damage done through the use of these devices as we do through the Gri Gri twisting our ropes. It is your wall and ultimately your decision, but like mentioned previously climbers dont like restrictions and doing something like this could have a knock on effect of "so whats next on the banning list" Mammut themselves are very open to criticism and feedback. After all, its the only way to perfect any product. I have sent this forum through to the UK Mammut rep to see what he thinks of it. and will let you know what he says.

Happy climbing
Anna Hammond - on 16 Nov 2013
In reply to victim of mathematics:
"Why does it being students make the blindest it of difference to the importance of the safety of the ropes?"

Universities in my opinion don't seem to understand the risks of climbing in the same way and so are tighter on insurance and if things go wrong, even if taught properly and entirely their fault, bad publicity (from the rest of the public who also may not understand climbing in the same way as fellow climbers - like most people I know who don't climb don't seem to understand how it can be an extreme sport until explained!) would reflect back on the person in charge of the wall and ultimately the centre. This I'm sure would then need proof of the wall being kept in the best condition on little funding and so rope condition would surely be a concern? (along with others of course). Also being a wall within a sports centre leads to a lower budget and more questions from management who don't have that much of a clue!?
Correct me if I'm wrong please.

Oceanrower - on 17 Nov 2013
In reply to Anna Hammond:
> (In reply to victim of mathematics)
> "Why does it being students make the blindest it of difference to the importance of the safety of the ropes?"
>
>
> Correct me if I'm wrong please.

You're wrong.

how can you be 'tighter' on insurance? A centre is either insured or it isn't.

I can assure you that bad publicity if a child came a cropper due to negligence would be a lot worse than a student who is able to take responsibility for themselves.

All walls have to be kept in a safe condition (not best, otherwise you'd be replacing the ropes every day) regardless of who's using it.

Why should a wall within a sports centre have to have a lower budget? Surrey Sports Park, for example, is kept in excellent condition and much cleaner and useable than some dedicated walls that I know. According to the website, HSV is often busy to the extent they turn people away. The income should be enough to replace worn equipment.

I really don't see why having a lot of students (as, incidentally, ALL walls do) should make any discernable difference.

Oh, and indoor climbing is NOT an extreme sport. Aligator wrestling, Wingsuit flying, even cave diving (maybe) but climbing? Nah.

caver - on 17 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:

Had look at the photos you've posted http://www.ukclimbing.com/photos/?category=4 and they raise a couple of questions.

The karabiner appears to be worn at the narrow end of the body. Here, the attachment point of the GriGri is forced against the spine of the Karabiner when loaded, which accelerates wear. You can see the worn groove and the wear on the GriGri caused by the leverage.

The photo of the lower-off is interesting. When the rope loads the two Karabiners it squeezes the two together where the rope runs through them. The sleeve on the screwgate acts as a pivot point and this would slightly space the opposite ends of the two karabiners. This looks like the two karabiners have had separate ropes running through them. If so, this isn't how they're designed to be used and this has accelerated the wear.
deepsoup - on 17 Nov 2013
In reply to Anna Hammond:
> management who don't have that much of a clue!?
> Correct me if I'm wrong please.

Well on that last bit at least, you may not be wrong in this case.
captain paranoia - on 18 Nov 2013
In reply to Rob Parsons:

I agree.

Whilst I have doubts about the testing methodology (i.e. I think the OP is only looking for evidence to back his hypothesis, rather than the wider question of what is causing damage, with no preconception), the 'consensus' that some have claimed here is from a small number of users, which isn't much more than anecdotal evidence.

For a ban to be imposed, I would want to see an investigation of all belay devices and krabs, over a significant sample size, before concluding that any particular device was likely to cause more damage than other types.
NottsRich on 18 Nov 2013
> (In reply to caver)
>
> The photo of the lower-off is interesting. When the rope loads the two Karabiners it squeezes the two together where the rope runs through them. The sleeve on the screwgate acts as a pivot point and this would slightly space the opposite ends of the two karabiners.

Agree with this bit.


> (In reply to caver)
>
> This looks like the two karabiners have had separate ropes running through them. If so, this isn't how they're designed to be used and this has accelerated the wear.


Don't follow this bit - care to elaborate? How can you tell they've had separate ropes running through them, when you can't see the wear at the wider (lower) end of the krabs?

For what it's worth I wouldn't be happy to find krabs of that condition at the top of an indoor route. I think hsv is correct to be querying the condition of them. I'm sure they are strong enough for use, and will be for some time yet. Sometimes appearances are important too, especially for the paying client.
Kieran_John - on 18 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I've never used a Click Up, and I'm a bit of a simpleton when it comes to this, but what you're saying is the Click Up damages the karabiner which then damages the ropes, right?

So if I'm using a click up and you say I can't, I'll probably swap to an ATC, and there's a fair chance I'll use the same karabiner. Surely that's no better for you?
Phillipe - on 19 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv:
While I understand people not agree with the view of the OP, please refrain from making unjust and critical marks of the Centre. I'd hope a lot of you with any sort of climbing experience understand that being in a Sports Centre, the top management have no idea about climbing and care little for it.

When first talking to you yesterday, I understood your views and somewhat agreed. After doing some research I believe I now disagree. The most important thing to not is that both the belay devices and carabiner in question are aluminium alloys, not steel. Where we avoid rope-metal contact where there has been metal-metal contact in things like quick draws, and rigging biners; we note that they are in contact with steel, which obviously does cause dangerous nicks and scratches (that is if rope were to be used on them).

Most of the carabiners have higher rope wear on the biner itself after using aforementioned devices, but no visible scratches or nicks. The main issue with customers in HSV using these devices, is the poorly chosen carabiners that they use for these devices. I'm sure everyone could agree, a Sentinel is not the ideal biner for the job. The rope wear is constantly directly in the corner. I am no civil engineer, but this seems to me like a very bad place for it to wear constantly. Obviously these devices should be used on an HMS (acknowledged the Sentinel is advertised as HMS, you get my point, though).

I believe, seeing the evidence first hand, it would be unreasonable to ban the devices. You know my hatred of them, and that I would love to ban them but it is unjust. Recommendations to change the biner would be reasonable and somewhat just. I'm trying to gather a few before this evening, and I shall bring them in and we shall take a proper look. And if we are in disagreement, we can post images here!
jkarran - on 19 Nov 2013
In reply to Phillipe:

> I'm sure everyone could agree, a Sentinel is not the ideal biner for the job. The rope wear is constantly directly in the corner. I am no civil engineer, but this seems to me like a very bad place for it to wear constantly.

Nor am I but that's exactly where that krab is designed to wear or at least to be loaded.

> Obviously these devices should be used on an HMS (acknowledged the Sentinel is advertised as HMS, you get my point, though).

Is there not a compatible krab model and or type recommended in the instructions? I'd presume it'd be a round x-section bent-wire type rather than a deeply profiled forged design.

> I believe, seeing the evidence first hand, it would be unreasonable to ban the devices. You know my hatred of them, and that I would love to ban them but it is unjust. Recommendations to change the biner would be reasonable and somewhat just. I'm trying to gather a few before this evening, and I shall bring them in and we shall take a proper look. And if we are in disagreement, we can post images here!

That'll be fun :)
jk
Phillipe - on 19 Nov 2013
In reply to Anna Hammond:
Anna, you've just made a pillock of yourself, and made the club seem incompetent.
Phillipe - on 19 Nov 2013
Also, you should know, as should any person with half a brain that in-situ ropes should be checked by the Centre to be safe for all people. Not just students. Not especially students. Everybody.
CPH - on 20 Nov 2013
In reply to hsv: I've been using the Click Up for about 2 years. For the first year I used a non-anodized screwgate and and it is worn smoothly (by the rope)like the one Alan has shown in his photo; mine is not worn as much. For the second year I have been using the screwgate shown in the link below (because it came with the Alpine Up that I bought so I thought that I would use it because it has that retaining spring to prevent cross loading.) This krab has a '...special wear-proof hard coat anodizing, ideal for intensive and prolonged use.' Now, this has partly worn off with use and this I think is what we are seeing in hsv's photo; mine is worn more extensively. However, although one can just feel 'an edge' (and calling it an edge is probably an exaggeration) where the anodizing has worn off I personally have not been the least bit worried that it could damage a rope. If this proves to be a concern then a solution is to use the non-anodized krab. I hope this is clear and helpful to the discussion.

http://www.climbingtechnology.it/en-US/climbing/carabiner/concept.html?idproduct=999
Oceanrower - on 20 Nov 2013
In reply to CPH: Nope. Not helpful at all.

Because you're not agreeing with the OP that they are death on a stick........

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