UKC

Twin rope?

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 Bendb 29 Apr 2021

Hi all I have been thinking about getting twin ropes for trad currently climbing with a single on nothing harder than hvs and most the time easier at the moment all of it is on Dartmoor but want to start exploring now 

So the question is should I buy twin/ ½ ropes or just stick with the one rope 

 GrahamD 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

A lot depends who you climb with.  I've always used half ropes, everyone in my group I climbed with owned one half rope each.  You don't 'need' halves until you are looking at venues with meandering lines and longer abseil descents, tbough.

 Jim Lancs 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

Twin ropes aren't the same as half ropes.

On many VS and HVS routes, you will find a pair of (nominal) 9mm half ropes a distinct advantage and are pretty much the 'standard' for most climbers at that grade.

But twin ropes (a pair of thinner ropes always used together as one single rope), are a more specialised concept and not sure are that relevant to UK cragging.

 Michael Gordon 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

Make sure you buy half ropes, not twins (look up the definitions). But yes, if you're planning on going to more adventurous venues (e.g. sea cliffs, multipitch crags) I would buy half ropes, or at least one and get a climbing partner to buy one also.

 AlanLittle 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Jim Lancs and Michael Gordon:

You're right in principle, but the last time I looked I couldn't find any twin-only rated ropes still on the market.

Edelrid - terrifyingly - makes a 7.1mm twin-and-half rated rope.

Post edited at 08:01
 Bendb 29 Apr 2021

Gr8 thanks for that happy I'm now not going to get that one mixed up  

I will be getting both as my climbing partner is my GF and whats mine is hers and what's hers is hers so..

So next question any recommendations for a pair of ½ ropes 

In reply to Bendb:

have you thought about getting some triple rated ropes? 

They're more expensive but you can use them as single ropes as well meaning you'll get more use out of the same ropes.

Post edited at 08:09
 Jim Lancs 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

The permutations of rope brands, lengths, thicknesses, features and people's opinions are almost limitless these days. So you need to be quite realistic about your needs and budget or you will be overwhelmed by all the options.

For many, the basic spec is a pair of 8.X mm ropes suitable for rock climbing in the UK in the dry.  Therefore a pair 50m long and without any special 'dry' treatment will work fine. Remember, ropes have a finite life, (Somewhere between 2 and 20 years depending on use and who you ask), so this is not the last pair of ropes you buy. So only buy for what you really are going to be doing in the near future.

A pair of basic, good weather cragging ropes can be bought from Rock & Run or Decathlon for around £130. As your aspirations increase (winter, Alps, high altitude, etc), then longer, thinner, lighter, better water resistant ropes become more desirable, but in general, that all adds to their cost. 

In reply to Bendb:

Lots of opinions on thread below re half ropes. The OP below, like you, is looking for half ropes to replace the discontinued Mammut Genesis 8.5mm's.

https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/gear/what_did_you_replace_mammut_genesis_85s_with-733537?

 gravy 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

For UK trad most useful is 50m 1/2 ropes.

If you climb a lot of grit then 40m 1/2 ropes are handy (you can get away with 30m but you need more self rescue competence).

For EU alpine / Scottish winter / international trad 60m 1/2s are my preference (even if a single will do, 1/2s make the abseils much easier).

For most sport, UK/EU 60m single is a good compromise between long routes and carrying to much stuff but you need to avoid longer routes or learn techniques to deal with them but if you're planning trips to particular EU venues consider a 70 or 80 as appropriate.

Twin ropes are not suitable except for very specialised applications.

 whenry 29 Apr 2021
In reply to GrahamD:

> A lot depends who you climb with.  I've always used half ropes, everyone in my group I climbed with owned one half rope each.  You don't 'need' halves until you are looking at venues with meandering lines and longer abseil descents, tbough.


I've seen the idea that you only need one floated on here quite a few times, but in my experience people either have two or none - and so I've never used one of my ropes and one of someone else's - far better to use two of the same type /size unless you have no option.

 biggianthead 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

The choice of double or single ropes is not dependent on the grade, but the complexity of the route.

Double ropes have the following advantages.

  • They provide less drag on meandering routes.
  • You can protect the second on traverses
  • They provide more rope for belays
  • They make abseiling easier
  • It is easier to help a second in trouble by giving assisted pulls

Disadvantage

  • Weight.

They are therefore often ideal for mountain or multi-pitch routes.

For simple lines (e.g. sports routes) or “small” crags (10-15m) a single is usually a good option. If a route on a “small” crag is complex then you can always use a single rope as a double.

I’ve climbed on 2 x 50m (9mm) for 40 years. On “small” crags I take just one rope (climb single or doubled as required. On sports crags I take a single 80m (8mm).

We all have our favourite brand of rope. I’ve climbed with many different types. There are no “bad” brands.

Post edited at 09:16
 Bobbygloss 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

Another minor point: try to get different coloured ropes. Makes it a lot easier to call for slack/tight on one rope when you're out of sight.

 Snyggapa 29 Apr 2021
In reply to James Painter:

Personally I like triples as they can still be safely used if you ab to the bottom and find you or your partner has left the other rope at the top. Only happened a couple of times. This year.

Saves a lot of effort in doing the "prussik of shame" 

 Bendb 29 Apr 2021

Great thanks all for the help I will have a look for some 50m ropes as for now all my climbing in the uk with some sea cliffs and moorland 

 JayW 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

As above, note the subtle but important distinction between half and twin ropes. Know the differences. 

I'd recommend a triple rated half rope, such as the Beal Opera Golden Dry. Probably the best rope I've owned so far. 

In reply to Bendb:

Agree with the above. One thing I'd add is if you're likely to spend a lot of time on the slate, Edelrid do cut-resistant ropes now. But you're well into the realm of specialist gear with them....

 johncook 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Bendb:

Twin ropes are not what you appear to think they are. You mean half ropes. Half ropes can be clipped individually into gear, twin ropes must always be clipped as a pair into every piece, effectively a single rope!

In reply to Bendb:

I assume you live in the southwest and as such will be doing most of your climbing on granite, in which case I'd recommend not going below 8.5mm unless you want to go through ropes quickly - wear is proportional to diameter.

 ianstevens 29 Apr 2021
In reply to gravy:

> For UK trad most useful is 50m 1/2 ropes.

60 m not standard these days? Certainly is with people I climb with. Seems pointless owning two sets when you want 60's for winter/alps stuff

 SteveSBlake 29 Apr 2021
In reply to johncook:

Not particularly in reply to you John....  There's plenty of ropes that are rated as Twin or Halves, depending on how you want to use them. There are of course 'triples' that do everything. I have a pair of Mammut 50M Twin/Halves and a Simond 80M Triple.

Some folks have suggested that Twins aren't suitable for the UK, but they are perfectly OK to use in a scenario where you would have otherwise used a single rated rope.

Steve

 gravy 29 Apr 2021
In reply to ianstevens:

Ah but I have a set of 40s for Peak crags and a set of 60s for mountains/winter/sea cliffs. 

If Dartmoor is your stomping ground then the weight and faff of a set of 60s is over the top. 50m 1/2 ropes does >99.5% of UK summer climbing. That extra 10m is just extra weight and extra tangles.

Quick question - for someone used to using a thick-ish single rope, would it be intelligent to go for a slightly thicker half/twin option for a first purchase? I've been looking at the Beal Opera as others have mentioned (helpful UKC review) but just not sure what the learning curve is like with thin ropes like this. There is a Mammut 8.7mm option, as well as a Beal 9.0mm option.

Plan to use it in the UK, but mainly for a Swiss trip to do some plaisir routes that are designed for twin ropes. So focused on a triple rated rope.

 Michael Gordon 29 Apr 2021
In reply to Eduardo2010:

Thin ropes are no more difficult to use, the main thing is to make sure your belay device can handle them effectively (some can't). 

 Michael Gordon 29 Apr 2021
In reply to AlanLittle:

> Edelrid - terrifyingly - makes a 7.1mm twin-and-half rated rope.

Probably for winter/alpine? I recall Dave MacLeod favours a 7mm 70m half (presumably as one of a pair) for use on the Ben. Much too skinny for my liking! 

 GrahamD 29 Apr 2021
In reply to whenry:

> I've seen the idea that you only need one floated on here quite a few times, but in my experience people either have two or none - and so I've never used one of my ropes and one of someone else's - far better to use two of the same type /size unless you have no option.

Totally different environment to the one I started in ! For us it was always expected that everyone contributed a half rope and some gear to the group.   I think people would have baulked at buying two ropes for others to freeload on !


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