/ alternative uses of gear loop

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Ban1 - on 24 Jan 2014
i saw a video on the line of a guy climbing and his belayer is anchored to the ground via the gear loop. as he grounded in the vid im guessing they might be newbs.

is the gear loop strong enough as they are usually rated lower
Choss on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

No no and no :-(
Ban1 - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:

when i say newbs you should see this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jd8VT7PfO1A i'll be surprised if this guy is still alive
johncook - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

The american pinch and slide belay method is bad, but not usually this bad, plus, as you say, the anchor clipped into the gear loop. Wonder who they learned their methods from. Or are they working on a trial and death system of learning!
Paul Hy - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:
i just read the text with the clip, i'm also surprised he's still alive, point 1, he's trad climbing and shes using a gri gri!!!!!
point 2, he didn't extend the cam at all, so how much drag!!!
Choss on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Paul Hy:

Grigri seems fine for Trad. Used one to Belay a Trad Lead Climber last weekend.
JoshOvki on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:

*gets chair + popcorn*
Choss on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to JoshOvki:

> *gets chair + popcorn*

Sorry, put your Popcorn away. already had that Debate. Grigri are fine for single rope Trad, now Proven by personal Experience.

http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?t=573073
wilkie14c - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

You can use the belay loop for gear though, you can see why this gets confusing...
Ban1 - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

so back on topic.
what rating are stardard gear loops?(im guessing they vary).

how much force does a average fall gererate?
crayefish - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

Not sure about gear loops but ice clippers are often around 5 kg so probably not far off that. And I doubt there is even a standard for it.
xplorer on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to crayefish:

All you need to know is that a gear loop is a GEAR loop.

Boring boring boring
Parrys_apprentice - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

gear loops are fine for belaying or anchoring off as long as you're the weight of a guinea pig.
martinph78 on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

> so back on topic.

> what rating are stardard gear loops?(im guessing they vary).

> how much force does a average fall gererate?

They are (mostly) not rated, and so any further questions regarding forces generated are pointless aren't they?



Ban1 - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

i wish i could start over i meant they were anchored from the HAUL loop

sorry
Choss on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

> i wish i could start over i meant they were anchored from the HAUL loop

>

> sorry

How about belay Loop?

Are we getting close now ;-)
Ian Parsons - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

Haul loops are usually made to belay loop strength, and while they are not normally recommended these days as an attachment point their use as a rear belay loop is not unknown - particularly, as in this case, when using a ground anchor for a light belayer. In the early days of harnesses, when waist belaying was still common and often required a stance facing outwards, it was fairly routine to add a knotted tape loop to the back of ones Whillans - or whatever - to facilitate this; harnesses soon appeared with a rear belay/haul loop as a standard feature. Nowadays the designation tends to be "haul loop" rather than "belay/haul loop", but the fact remains that if it's of sufficient strength its use in the latter manner is actually only replicating what used to be common practice. It does, of course, make it harder to "escape the system" should that prove necessary.
crayefish - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:
12kN on my current harness. When I was young (though no lighter than now! lol) I did abseil off the haul loop walking down the crag face first a couple of times for fun... not sure it is recommended practise though! lol
Post edited at 13:14
Ban1 - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:

i climb with my wife so she will set a ground anchor from the belay loop.

i saw said video and i wondered how safe it really was.
jkarran - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

Most I've seen say 5 or 10kg, they're probably good for 50 to 100kg (not suggesting anyone tries!). Metolious I think do some that are idiot proof and rated rather higher, maybe 12kN.

No, they're not meant for ground anchoring.

Average fall doesn't mean much but a short fall of a couple of meters (gear at thighs) 10m up will give you low single digit kN at the climber, a bit less that 2x that at the gear. The force applied to the belayer by the rope will be less than that applied to the climber by the rope. The force applied to the belayer by a ground anchor is basically unpredictable, it's likely to be the lesser part of bu**er all but it could, with a spectacularly badly set up system peak at way more than the force applied by the rope. In short: It's complicated and small changes to the set-up can yield big changes in the result.

jk
Choss on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

Ive always felt safe enough Tying belay Points into my belay Loop, as Long as you Know how all the different pulls are Coming From in a fall, dont see an Issue with Loop strength. May make system a Little Less dynamic Though.

Im Sure theres probably a reason you shouldnt Though ;-)
jkarran - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ian Parsons:

> Haul loops are usually made to belay loop strength, and while they are not normally recommended these days as an attachment point their use as a rear belay loop is not unknown - particularly, as in this case, when using a ground anchor for a light belayer... It does, of course, make it harder to "escape the system" should that prove necessary.

It also squeezes the belayer uncomfortably and can flip them violently off their feet risking a head injury and of course risking them instinctively dropping you to save themselves. That you should perhaps be 'one', I know you're not advocating the technique.

jk
chrismcc - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1: saw a guy with his rope clipped in to a gear loop when untied ( to rethread a sport lower off). He got very defensive when I gave (very polite) advice, perhaps I'm just over cautious with my life..... Ah well
Bulls Crack - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

> when i say newbs you should see this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jd8VT7PfO1A i'll be surprised if this guy is still alive

I didn't know anyone climbed on such choss outside of this country!
tjin - on 24 Jan 2014
Gear loops are design to fail (15 kg if i remember correctly) to prevent you from getting injured. If anything on you gear loop or the gear loop it self get stuck during a fall it should fail. This prevents injury caused by falling in to a static object (nut,cams,slings,draws). This force, combined with the side way motion can cause heavy injury.


nniff - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

Well, this entirely depends upn which harness you have. I happen to wear a Metolius Safetech, largely because it is the only harness of which I am aware that has an adjustable raise. Seeing as my harness sits far higher on my waist over winter clothing, I find this very useful for an 'all round' harness.

In addition, everything on the harness is full strength. The weakest component is the elastic on the leg loops at the back, which IIRC is only about 5kN. Gear loops come in at 12kN, which is the same as a wire. It is great fun clipping a second, newly arrived at a belay, into a gear loop.
girlymonkey - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to jkarran:

Being teeny, I have been known to use a haul loop to attach to a ground anchor, its much comfier than attaching to belay loop! I've never felt squished by it, and also never even vaguely felt like I would invert. I have been slammed into a crag when anchored to belay loop. Rear attachment give a back pull to stop this issue. Maybe just depends on shape of person and harness?
Ian Parsons - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to jkarran:

> It also squeezes the belayer uncomfortably and can flip them violently off their feet risking a head injury and of course risking them instinctively dropping you to save themselves.

Indeed - the squeezing effect is often cited as the main reason for not belaying in this manner. When the weight difference between climber and belayer is not excessive I would suggest that the discomfort to the belayer is less than that felt by the falling leader, although in a scenario involving a large bloke and a light female or child this may well no longer be the case; are you aware of any instances in which this has actually resulted in injury?

To be honest I've never come across your second point, nor indeed had I ever considered it. Presumably it can arise because while the rear loop is attached solely to the waistbelt, the main belay loop (to which the belay device is clipped) encircles both waistbelt and legloop "bridge"; so when an upward force is applied to the belay device it immediately lifts the legloops (and legs) while the rest of the body remains anchored down by the back of the waistbelt. Obviously this doesn't happen when the ground anchor is attached to the main belay loop, although this might require a less natural belaying stance. I see your point. Again; is this theory, or are actual occurrences widely known about? (Except by me, obviously!) One would imagine that it's more likely to happen if the harness has a short rise/legloop bridge than if the reverse is the case - ie the upward loading of the legloops is more immediate, and shared less with the waistbelt.

Maybe all this is one reason why - as far as I can make out - legloops on some brands of harness generally seem to have a longer rise than they used to; or is that just Black Diamond? After years of satisfaction with Wizzards, Mentors etc I now find that current models seem to enwrap my nether regions in more surplus webbing than is actually convenient! I was thinking, too, that fewer harnesses seem to feature haul loops these days - although that's based purely on observation rather than research.
jkarran - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to girlymonkey:

> Being teeny, I have been known to use a haul loop to attach to a ground anchor, its much comfier than attaching to belay loop! I've never felt squished by it, and also never even vaguely felt like I would invert. I have been slammed into a crag when anchored to belay loop. Rear attachment give a back pull to stop this issue. Maybe just depends on shape of person and harness?

Sorry, not a shape thing, you've just not been pulled up hard enough yet. When you are your belay loop will end up 'up', the back of your harness 'down' and your feet swept out from under you by the lifting and turning motion, the back of your head is now rushing toward the floor. Attached properly to the belay loop that wont happen.

A properly adjusted ground anchor should stop you hitting the crag irrespective of where it's attached to you if that's something you're concerned about.

The 'squashing' thing is just a matter of comfort, I doubt it's ever hurt anyone.

Most of the problems people have with ground anchors are of their own making, they're much easier to get wrong than right and rarely without some risk.

jk
JoshOvki on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:

> Sorry, put your Popcorn away. already had that Debate. Grigri are fine for single rope Trad, now Proven by personal Experience.

Drat!
girlymonkey - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to jkarran:

My husband (most frequent climbing partner) is about twice my weight, of course I've been lifted hard! My harness sits high, so I do get lifted, but never inverted. I think it must just be the height of the harness.
If I am using a sandbag indoors (which I don't do often), then I always use the haul loop. (Different scenario, I know)
Alun - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to JoshOvki:
> > Sorry, put your Popcorn away. already had that Debate. Grigri are fine for single rope Trad, now Proven by personal Experience.

> Drat!

Don't put it away just yet, cos I'm going to bite. Choss linked to a thread which, to my reading at least, seemed to confirm that grigris place more load on the top runner, and therefore aren't so suitable for trad.

Apart from this issue (which I confess is fairly minor) I just can't see the point of using an autolock device for trad. The only advantage of using an autolock device is that it makes things much less tiring for the belayer when the leader is hanging around for ages working the moves on a route.

If the leader is relying on the autolock device to assist in the actual catching of a fall (because belayer is too light/too weak to catch) then I would respectfully suggest that that belayer is too light/too weak to be safely holding the rope for that leader. Still, everybody has to make up their own mind about what is considered safe.

I say this as a happy user of a grigri for sport climbing and ATC for trad.

Hope that encourages more popcorn consumption, it is Friday after all :)

nniff - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to tjin:
> Gear loops are design to fail (15 kg if i remember correctly) to prevent you from getting injured. If anything on you gear loop or the gear loop it self get stuck during a fall it should fail. This prevents injury caused by falling in to a static object (nut,cams,slings,draws). This force, combined with the side way motion can cause heavy injury.

There's 'urban myths' and made up rubbish - this is fair and square in the latter category. Anyone ever fallen and caught a runner in such a way? Anyone ever tumbled down a gully and wished that something or anything not as hard as the rocks would stop them?

Quite apart from this, the gear loops on my harness are rated to 12kN
tjin - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to nniff:
Yes you metoleus is, but also the only one. If you have worn a rope access harness and you have used the positioning loop (15kn small metal d ring, so it wont get caught, gear loops are seperate and design to fail), you would know not to fall on.

i have seen gearloops break, thing get caught in rock, bolt, rebar and steel, etc.. Rather loose gear than your life. Life carrying point should never fail, but you only attach your self on those points with some form of shock absorbsion. Non life carring loops should fail to prevent huge shock loads from static equipment.

If you need gear loops to safe your ass i would suggest to learn to use your gear correctly.
Your harness is giving you the false sense of safety and only teaches bad behavior.
Post edited at 18:57
Paul Hy - on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:
NEVER use a grigri on trad as it locks up to quick putting too much pressure on your gear which could fail!!!!

or my other reply:

why not use a static rope as well!!
Post edited at 19:15
Sarah G on 24 Jan 2014
In reply to Alun:
> (In reply to JoshOvki)
> [...]
>
> [...]
>
> Don't put it away just yet, cos I'm going to bite. Choss linked to a thread which, to my reading at least, seemed to confirm that grigris place more load on the top runner, and therefore aren't so suitable for trad.

Good point.
>
> Apart from this issue (which I confess is fairly minor) I just can't see the point of using an autolock device for trad. The only advantage of using an autolock device is that it makes things much less tiring for the belayer when the leader is hanging around for ages working the moves on a route.

Nah, I just just to tie off my atc while Chris was fannying about. It untied in seconds once he was sorted and started progressing again......
>
> If the leader is relying on the autolock device to assist in the actual catching of a fall (because belayer is too light/too weak to catch) then I would respectfully suggest that that belayer is too light/too weak to be safely holding the rope for that leader. Still, everybody has to make up their own mind about what is considered safe.

Hm, agree there. It should be relatively easy to chuck in extra Krabs to make an atc more sticky, or even use a sticht plate. I found the sticht/atc much more versatile (and light!) than a gri gri.
>
> I say this as a happy user of a grigri for sport climbing and ATC for trad.
>
> Hope that encourages more popcorn consumption, it is Friday after all :)

Ohhhhh, yeah! Got a packet of skittles, fancy one?

Sx

nniff - on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to tjin:

The clue's in the name - ukclimbing not ukropeaccess.

I have no false sense of security and my harness is an inanimate object that does not teach.

'Designed to fail' and 'Designed to take a force of x' are not the same thing. You have yet to explain a practical way in which to exert a life-threatening force through a gear loop - entanglement with rebar does not count in the application of which we speak.

I do not need gear loops to 'safe my ass'. I maintain, however, that you are still talking through yours.
Choss on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to Paul Hy:

> NEVER use a grigri on trad as it locks up to quick putting too much pressure on your gear which could fail!!!!

Theyre easy enough to give a gentle catch with. Its Like any Other belay device or method, as good as the user in its control. Theres enough rope Stretch, dynamic belay, and dynamic belaying technique, to Largely negate the Problem.

> or my other reply:

> why not use a static rope as well!!

Because that WOULD put too much Pressure on the top Piece of Gear, Never mind your Spine.

GridNorth - on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:

How do you give a dynamic belay when you are unable to move on a tiny, hanging belay halfway up a route and the leader is out of sight and hearing? Genuine question.
Choss on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to GridNorth:

> How do you give a dynamic belay when you are unable to move on a tiny, hanging belay halfway up a route and the leader is out of sight and hearing? Genuine question.

If theyre that far away, sure plenty of rope stretch to soak up shock load. And be ready to React to a fall.

There are Issues with a tuber as well, falling rock, Slammed into rock in a fall, etc, can all Lead to belayer Becoming ko'ed or Incapacitated, Leading to a Dropped Leader. Grigri can Prevent that.

Add to that the grigris Better facilities for self Rescue.

all belay devices and methods carry risk. I think the differences between them are swings and Roundabouts. As Long as youre aware of any devices Limitations and how to manage them, i dont see a Problem.



JoshOvki on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:

Doesn't take much for someone to be out of sight and hearing, only takes a small traverse around a corner on a breezy day.

I see "Lead to belayer Becoming ko'ed or Incapacitated" thrown around alot in these debates, has this ever actually happened and the leader been dropped? (or saved due to a grigri)
Choss on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to JoshOvki:

Well ive Taken enough small hits From falling rocks, and a few Near misses From blocks big enough to give pause for Thought, to Know that serious belayer injuries are a Serious risk.
GridNorth - on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:

I like the idea of using an assisted breaking device on trad as I have actually been dropped by a second being dislodged from a stance but I think the GriGri is the last one I would consider. For a start 99% of my trad climbing is on doubles so an Edelrid Mega Jule or Mammut Smart Alpine are the only options as far as I am aware. I'm a big fan of of my single rope Smart for sport but the double version looks too big and clumsy. I may consider a Mega Jule but I will be waiting to see if they sort out the minor issues with the wire. I have owned a GriGri but don't like them. I think the only reason they are so popular is because they got in early and went on to dominate the market. Very over rated IMO but each to their own.
Choss on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to GridNorth:

CT do a double rope alpine up as well.
JoshOvki on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:
Yeah me too, but has never resulted in me being dropping/dropping someone, but going by GridNorths response it is entierly possible.

Could it also cause an issue for self rescue? If you are on lead an your belayer becomes incapacitated, you are able to make yourself safe. With an ATC you can pull the rope through the belay plate to get enough slack to ab down to the belayer, with a GriGri you can't.

(Just so you know I am not trying to have a dig at you, it is something that interests me)
Post edited at 11:59
Choss on 25 Jan 2014
In reply to JoshOvki:

Gridnorths anecdote shows it happens. Ive had many more Near misses From rock fall than popped Trad Gear, so weighing the odds...

I think grigri gives Enhanced self Rescue Capability.
Ban1 - on 26 Jan 2014
SO apart from the belay loop

would you ground anchor from

GEAR loop
HAUL loop
johncook - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to nniff:

Never caught a runner clipped to a gear loop, but have caught one which was clipped to a bandolier. Being stuck with one arm/shoulder pulled into my neck, the bandolier tight around my neck, trying to figure out a way to quickly untangle myself was quite imperative. In the end I relaxed, let the bandolier slide up my arm and face/head (may explain my looks but it doesn't)and took the rest of the fall, and the nylon burns from the bandoliers slide, and they smarted! At least I was pulled/held upright, possibly if they nut had been on a strong gear loop I could have been flipped over with the resulting risk of injury.
I have had a belayer injured when he clipped his ground anchor into his haul loop (against my recommendations) and belayed off the belay loop. I took a big winger and he had severe bruising/clothing burns on both sides, and peed blood for several days as the impact of a falling lardarse tried to make the waistbelt a straight line instead of a nice body shaped circle. Although he was lifted off the ground, there did not seem to have been any risk of inversion, so his head appeared safe (his most expendable part).
Ban1 - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to johncook:

ouch! so were all agreed then. the people in vid are complete idiots
Ian Parsons - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

> ouch! so were all agreed then. the people in vid are complete idiots

Indeed; posting chunks of rubbish webcam footage on the internet seems completely daft!
dutybooty - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

Gear loops vary on ratings between manufacturers. Assume none at all.

However, some harnesses have rated haul loops at the back, which are like a belay loop on the back of the harness. Its not clear in the video whether its attached to this or just to a gear loop.
Ban1 - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to dutybooty:

after nniff comment why would anyone risk it(using haul loop)
dutybooty - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

> after nniff comment why would anyone risk it(using haul loop)

Risk what? Dedicated haul loops are normally rated to a high rating.
SteveoS - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

For attaching a length of cord too, to pull off kids who are "stuck".
deacondeacon - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

> SO apart from the belay loop

> would you ground anchor from

> GEAR loop

> HAUL loop


Just belay from the belay loop (or rope loop if on multipitch/ at the top of the crag)
The clue is in the name :)
thermal_t - on 26 Jan 2014
In reply to deacondeacon:
In light of that video are we really discussing gear/haul loops? That fall was one of the funniest things I have ever seen!
jkarran - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to girlymonkey:
> My husband (most frequent climbing partner) is about twice my weight, of course I've been lifted hard! My harness sits high, so I do get lifted, but never inverted. I think it must just be the height of the harness.

> If I am using a sandbag indoors (which I don't do often), then I always use the haul loop. (Different scenario, I know)

It's not really about where your harness sits on you (unless it's so high you're *very* bottom heavy - no rudeness intended) it's about the shape it makes and its orientation when the climbing rope and the ground anchor's opposing forces are applied. The harness rotates to align the front and back of the harness between the two opposing forces, at that point if your feet were lifted off the ground you're just along for the ride.

Could you abseil sat upright and free from the rockface with 30kg hanging off the rear haul loop. I know I couldn't, not even close, it'd roll me back into a very awkward stress position. I buy female fit (higher 'rise') harnesses to lift my attachment point above my CoG.

It's not just a theoretical risk, I've had it happen to me and I've seen it happen to others over the years. Generally it's not too severe, it just leaves you in a very legs-high sitting position swinging in toward the wall (assuming sandbag, not ground anchor) which is ok so long as you're going in feet first. Ass first or worse, head first hurts.

The ground anchor exists to help resist the pull of the climber's rope. Logically you want it aligned with that pull so why wouldn't you clip it to the same loop you're belaying from? Any other alignment/attachment produces off axis forces and torques that you, the belayer then have to resist if you can.

jk
Post edited at 11:37
Ban1 - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to dutybooty:

sorry dutybooty I meant johncook
'took a big winger and he had severe bruising/clothing burns on both sides, and peed blood for several days as the impact of a falling lardarse tried to make the waistbelt a straight line instead of a nice body shaped circle.'

must of been a big boy falling
johncook - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to Ban1:

I weigh in at about 12 1/2 stone plus including rack. It was a long free fall on trad gear, approx 35ft. (We did get the hex out without too much bother!) As he was much lighter than me he had a ground anchor, but insisted on clipping it to the haul loop. I wanted him clipped to the belay loop. If you want to see the effect, get a belt, fold in in half, hold each half so that there is a circular loop between your hands, then yank your hands apart. Makes a lovely clapping noise. Unfortunately for him, his body stopped his harness clapping. For some reason he now clips to his belay loop and climbs with somemone else. (Possibly because he is in America and I am now in the UK!)
Paul Hy - on 29 Jan 2014
In reply to Choss:



> Because that WOULD put too much Pressure on the top Piece of Gear, Never mind your Spine.

hi Choss, you did'nt get my sarcasm then!
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