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Death modified grigri for leading ice - opinions

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 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
I am thinking about climbing a route with a grigri - it has one pitch of steep ice at the top with the rest being pretty reasonable 50 degs or so. So it makes sense as all I'd need to do would be set a belay at the top, ab back down and retrieve the gear and reclimb the pitch. However, having never used one, I'm thinking about the implications of the higher impact caused by the autoblock - would be a valid consideration? Also what is the device like to use in practice? Can you still use it as a standard grigri? I can't face the high tax required for the purchase of a silent partner so that's a non starter...
 Hardonicus 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann: Could be offset to a degree with screamers and skinny ropes no?
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to Hardonicus: Screamer yes - was thinking of using a yates Ice Scream between the anchor and the rope which reduces the impact massively. However skinny ropes and grigri... doubt it would mix too well...
 Hardonicus 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann: But a little bit o' slippage will give you the dynamicism you require!
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to Hardonicus: Haha... I don't want it too dynamic if you know what I mean ;)
seaofdreams 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

Not an opinion but more of a thought.

I would be super worried about quality of the belay that you are leaving behind bearing in mind that some people use a counter weight as well as a upside down anchor to give a little "bounce".

The thinner rope is a terrible idea. AFAIK Grigri et al either lock or don't without external help (ie your hands), I think you would be likely to go all the way to the stopper but am prepared to be wrong if presented with a good argument (ie more than my mates partner did this in Thailand in 1998 and ...)
 Gwilymstarks 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

Mike, have you taken leave of your senses or just looking for a Darwin Award.

I can't see any part of your idea as sensible.
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to seaofdreams: The system does rely on back up knots should the grigri fail to catch. Having not used it I don't know how often it does not catch either. Weight? I guess I would be more than happy to leave my sack on the anchor. But I guess that would not be a huge amount of weight! I would need to construct a very bomber belay I guess, but then ice anchors are easy to make multi directional - screws are by their nature multi directional and they could be back up with abalkov threads... maybe a couple of them equalised!... two screws and two abalokovs would most likely hold the weight of a bus providing the ice quality is reasonable...
 tom84 07 Dec 2009
In reply to Gwilymstarks: both clearly, it's more a case of "how complex a system that may or may not work can i rig and tell everyone about"
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to Gwilymstarks: Course it's not sensible. That's part of the attraction ;) Obviously there are people out there using these sorts of systems, otherwise there would not be anybody backroping and soloing alpine routes. I'm just hoping that someone might be able to enlighten me...
 jimtitt 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
The aid climbing way of using a weight is o.k. but do you really want to drag an 80kg pig up there? Some guys use a via feratta plate with rope lanyard. Another good way is either a belay plate or an hms with the sack as a braking weight.
But expecting a grigri to work on any sort of iced rope is wild optimism if you ask me!
 jkarran 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

You're basically looking for the least bad solution. I'd be a little surprised if a DM GriGri on a snowy/icy rope is going to be it.

The anchors are what they are, the possibilities are defined by the route so you'll have to live with what you find.

jk
seaofdreams 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

http://www.rockclimbing.com/cgi-bin/forum/gforum.cgi?post=208268;search_string=passthepitonspete%20a...

I am in no way responsible for your brain when it melts trying to read and understand all of the stuff this guys posts.
 hwackerhage 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

Sounds OK but if fails you may have a chance of winning the Darwin award!
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to jimtitt: That is a very fair point. I have just been looking at an alternative system using an ATC guide in autoblock mode which on the face of it seems to work extremely well and has the advantage of not requiring extra equipment and working on smaller diameter ropes. I'll dig out the explanations of the system, which do mention specifically that it was used whilst leading ice, maybe this is the system to consider. What ever happens I would not be taking the decision lightly...
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to jimtitt: http://www.mountainz.co.nz/content/article/article.php?article=220406_ropesolo.php&direct=genera...

He does mention that like most solo systems it does not work in an inverted fall. I just tried it out and it seems like the rope would feed very well, but that an inverted fall would definitely be a problem, so back up knots would be essential...
 jimtitt 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
I wouldn´t use anything in autoblock mode to hold a lead fall, well not until I see some tests that show it doesn´t cut the rope under high load and that it slips at a reasonable impact. I´d use the grigri on you and a normal plate with a weight to soften the hit at the belay. If you use a bungee sling and a weak link to hold the grigri upright it´s virtually impossible to get the grigri not to lock when inverted (as far as I can tell) though I don´t carry the spare rope in a sack like a lot of guys but let it hang below me.
 Will_he_fall 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

A guy I knocked around with in the Canadian Rockies regularly uses a soloist to protect himself on ice routes, even on some pretty steep and entertaining pitches. He seemed to think that it would work well, but then the soloist is a bit more of a specialized bit of kit.

Either way, you don't want to be contemplating testing if it works, as I'm sure you know falling on ice isn't good for the legs.

Will
 CurlyStevo 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
would a gri gri hold on iced up ropes?
In reply to mike kann: Have you considered the possibility of getting a mate to belay you?
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to Daniel Armitage: Can't as its a mates holiday type affair and none of the others climb, let alone climb alpine ice... the thing is it may not even be in condition when I get there so it may all be a moot point...
 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to jimtitt: I may have to see if I can borrow my missus structural lab and do an experiment... However it's got to be said that I doubt very much that it would strip the sheath as there are no teeth as such to do the stripping - it is a standard belay plate so you would have thought the manufacturer would have covered this angle...
 jimtitt 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
I can put a few guideplates on the pull tester on Wednesday and see what happens when you get up to high loads, the problems I can foresee is that the loaded rope is either going to cut the trapped rope underneath or will go so thin that it slips to the side of the other strand and doesn´t lock anymore.
 uncontrollable 07 Dec 2009
In reply to jimtitt:

I would be very interested to know how the ATC-Guide works in pull test. I found a single 8mm slips to side, 9mm runs smoothly and 10,5 creates a lot of drag if used for rope-soloing.
I have taken some minor slips/falls on it and it seemed to work fine.
the 8mm which slipped to the side still held but was difficult to release.

To the OP:
I haven't read the whole thread so sorry if things are already covered:
I would strongly consider if ice/snow goes well together with a grigri or silent partner!


 beardy mike 07 Dec 2009
In reply to jimtitt: Thanks Jim - That would be fantastic! I'm using an ATC guide, probably on a 9mm cord... I dunno if you have that combo... from the amount of recurring interest in these products there must be a market - it's quite surprising that there is no official product for europe considering there is no CE requirement for belay devices as far as I'm aware...
 KiwiPrincess 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
The grigri isn't great in ice, the icy bits of the rope won't go through.. it Jams all the time! and if it got ice in the jamming part could easily not lock off in theory.
 uncontrollable 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann: yhm
 biscuit 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

Post on here for a partner on the dates you're travelling.

Less likely to end in tears i think.
 jimtitt 07 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
Certainly got that combo and a few others!
Trouble with this sort of application its a legal minefield and hard to get an absolutely failsafe product. And of course just about everyone thinks a modded Grigri with a 10mm+ rope is the tool, but on ice and dry treated ropes I´d certainly be a bit cautious/extremely dubious/wouldn´t touch it with a bargepole (well to be truthful I never go anywhere near all that cold stuff anyway!).
 jimtitt 09 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
A quick torture session and the answer is you (probably) wont die!

When you overload guide plates they do funny things.
The first is that the trapped rope escapes sideways from under the tensioned rope and gets trapped between the tensioned rope and the side of the slot.This is very difficult to free off and you have to dismantle everything and twist the locking krab brutally to release the rope. Take your Prusiks.
Apply yet more load and the trapped rope where it crosses the tensioned rope goes down through the slot with a bang. At this point the holding power drops off considerably but not catastrophically, though pretty near!
Easy to releasse, just unclip the krab when unweighted. Still need to take your Prusiks!

ATC Guide. 9mm Edelrid, used, non treated. First fail mode 2.96kN. Max fail load 5.58kN. Residual load 1.6kN
ATC Guide. 8.2mm Edelrid, new,treated. First fail mode 2.05kN. Max fail load 4.06kN. Residual load 1.2kN

Reverso³. 9mm Edelrid, used, non treated. First fail mode 2.25kN. Max fail load 3.60kN. Residual load 0.9kN
Reverso³. 8.2mm Edelrid, new,treated. First fail mode 1.6kN. Max fail load 2.38kN. Residual load 0.7kN
Reverso³. 10.2 Mammut, used, non treated. First fail mode 3.68kN. Stopped test at 7kN as I didn´t have the tester guards on and things start breaking over these sort of loads!

All with Petzl Attache 12mm round profile karabiner.
No rope damage observed.
Very abrupt stop with less than 5cm slip (estimated but certainly less than a Grigri).

Jim
james anderson 09 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann: there was a link on here a while back to a good NZ article about using the old type petz reverso for solo ice climbing.
 jimtitt 09 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:
There is a link higher in this thread posted by you about a guy in NZ rope soloing with a .........
:~)
 uncontrollable 09 Dec 2009
In reply to jimtitt:

thanks for the testing, much appreciated!
 francoisecall 09 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann: It can work. I have used a modified gri gri(it's a hole drilled for a sling) .But test your system somewhere you can jump off. I tested it from my balcony. Beware that because the grigri only works one way it has to be quite high on your body. Some people use a full body harness like those used for aid climbing. I had mine on a tight sling diagonally across my chest, one arm in. Hard to explain. There must be some website you can find diagrams.
 uncontrollable 09 Dec 2009
In reply to francoisecall:
as mentioned above by various people Grigri and ice do not go ell together.

Uli Steck had a lot about how to death mod a Gri Gri on his homepage
 francoisecall 09 Dec 2009
In reply to uncontrollable: Why would it be different on ice or rock?
 uncontrollable 09 Dec 2009
In reply to francoisecall:

a gri-gri doesn't work well on icy ropes, as far as I'm aware the silent partner and soloist suffer from the same problem.

 francoisecall 09 Dec 2009
In reply to uncontrollable:

No belay device works on icy ropes! If the ropes are iced, time to get off.
 francoisecall 09 Dec 2009
In reply to uncontrollable: Could not find any mention of gri gri on Ueli Steck's website.
In reply to mike kann: Mike, The Curtain? Just climb it normally!!
 uncontrollable 09 Dec 2009
In reply to francoisecall:

> If the ropes are iced, time to get off.
;-)

"The Grigri is not ideal for ice climbing as the rope can freeze and become less pliable, creating undue friction and defeating the smooth action inherent in the Grigri’s use" (http://www.spgear.org/reviews/419/Grigri.html)
other people mentioned ice blocking the mechanism etc.

 uncontrollable 09 Dec 2009
 beardy mike 09 Dec 2009
In reply to jimtitt: Thanks for that Jim! I owe you a beer! So basically the message is go for a larger diameter single if possible, maybe 9.8-10mm, preferably slightly used. As indicated I have a screamer which limits the load in the system to 3kn max so I think this could work well! I think the next thing to do is to test the practicalities of it all...
 maresia 10 Dec 2009
In reply to mike kann:

Mike Mike Mike... What are you planning you loon. And more to the point why aren't I in on it - sounds like fun!

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