Be kind! I'm just starting out on self belay systems. I've a microtraxion with which I have no problem. This is attached directly to my belay loop via a petzl OK carabiner. Then I've the ascension, attached via a dogbone and two OK carabs on a separate rope. I've also an improvised chest harness. However the ascension is not running smoothly up the rope (10mm static) and as I climb slack builds up and I have to manually move the device up.
What needs to be done to ensure it runs up without intervention?
Big knot in the bottom. Off the ground. Bag attached. Not very heavy though. What kinda weight should I be looking for?
I don't know what weight, I make sure it's enough to keep the rope taught. Seems to have worked up till now.
The rope needs to remain taught throughout the climb so hang a bag or full water bottle off, there should be no resistance as you climb only when you fall. If you’re doing this and it’s not running up the rope smooth your rope is too thick or heaven forbid, you’ve got it on upside down.
Never encountered this issue so I am concerned.
Can you send a photo of how you have the ascender setup?
You need to attach the correct karabiner at the top, and nothing at the bottom.
Well perhaps that's it. I've the carabiner at the bottom eyelet though the ascension is above my microtraxion.
Perhaps secure via bottom eyelet and hold in position with cord through through top one.
Like below but devices swooped position
Definitely not upside down!
The route I've tried it on is quite slabby.
If you put the krab through the right hole the handled jammer pulls very freely, if you don't it binds on the rope.
I can't claim familiarity with this setup but i have done lots of caving SRT. Doing that, i have the base of my Croll (an ascender without a handle) attatched to my waistbelt, while the top end is attached to my chest strap via a tiddly maillion.
This all works fine so long is the Croll is held in position. From the picture you posted, it seems as though both the ascender and the micro-traxion are free to slop around as you move up. If that is indeed how you use it, i can't see that working well. They need to be fixed in position so that they cant pivot either upwards or downwards.
When i've done self belayed climbing, i've just used the caving setup. The only problem with this is that the tension in the rope upsets your natural balance.
> I've the carabiner at the bottom eyelet though the ascension is above my microtraxion.
I'm not sure I completely follow you, but it's important that the (oval) carabiner goes through the two holes at the top (as in your picture there). That way the bar of the carabiner passing between the two holes completely encloses the rope in the 'U' shape of the body above the cam - it isn't just held in the device by the cam itself, and you couldn't just open the cam and take it off the rope without also unclipping it.
(This is also why Petzl's instructions say you shouldn't be using a Croll for this, but you can use an Ascension or a Basic - a Croll has only one hole and no 'U' shape in the body at the top.)
Confusingly, and just to complicate matters, the current Basic also appears to have only one hole at the top - whereas earlier models, like the handled version, had two.
Oh - maybe I'm out of date then!
(Come to think of it, most of my gear is pretty ancient.)
> I'm not sure I completely follow you, but it's important that the (oval) carabiner goes through the two holes at the top (as in your picture there). That way the bar of the carabiner passing between the two holes completely encloses the rope in the 'U' shape of the body above the cam - it isn't just held in the device by the cam itself, and you couldn't just open the cam and take it off the rope without also unclipping it.
Thanks. That makes sense. I notice that, in all the Petzl diagrams, the ascension device is clipped directly to the belay loop while the second device is extended on a dogbone.
So, when using two devices, of which one is an ascension, the ascension should not be 'extended' via a dogbone but always be direct onto the belay loop using the top hole. As per this diagram (though my extended device is a microtraxion, not a microcender).
I don't think there's anything wrong with extending it on a dogbone, but I guess it probably would work better as the bottom one if you're using two devices on the same rope.
Dunno really, I'm a bit reluctant to offer advice on TR soloing. I've dabbled a bit using a Rocker and a Grigri and occasionally just a clove-hitch on a big HMS carabiner as a back-up on a second rope, but don't have a vast amount of experience. Never used an Ascension for this, so I'm hardly qualified to tell you how to go about it. I just thought it was worth flagging up what Petzl say about it in the instruction leaflet.
> The route I've tried it on is quite slabby
And that’s your problem. Two things are happening
1 Some of the weight of the spare rope , gear etc that you have to weight the rope is being taken by the slab, not hanging through the device.
2 The orientation of your body is not parallel to the rope and as you move up the rope forms an angle through your device inhibiting smooth running
Get on something steep and it will all seem better.
I've just started using a Climbing Technology RollNLock on one rope, and backed up with a Gri Gri on a second rope. Seems to work really well, and very little faff (other than pulling the slack through the Gri Gri). The rope tracks through the RollNLock really easily and it locks reliably. The other plus is that it isn't 'toothed' in the way that the Petzl Ascension/Traxion is.
Also, a question for those of you using an Ascension, why don't you use a Basic/Croll instead? They're less bulky?
I basically use my caving srt set up including croll for self belaying but instead of putting my feet in top jammer footloop I propel myself up using the rock ....if I get stuck I just haul on the top jammer. If by any chance the croll failed then you are still attached to the top jammer. I havent died yet obvs