Send us a suggestion!

Tech Tip canyoneering with a climbing cam as a retrievable anchor?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by levifackrell, Jul 8, 2015.

  1. levifackrell

    levifackrell

    Messages:
    55
    Likes:
    18
    Location:
    Sandy, Utah
    so a couple of days ago I had a great idea for a retrievable anchor (I haven't tried it yet) just by using a climbing cam. just place a cam in the crack and put a pull cord on the trigger, rappel off the anchor (don't pull the cord or you die!) when your down pull on the cord and the cam should come down. here are some cam placement videos that may help determine if this is possible.




    [​IMG]
    Untitled.
    kmanz likes this.
  2. R Marsters

    R Marsters

    Messages:
    30
    Likes:
    19
    I could use a couple new cams. I'd be most grateful if you could start posting your canyoneering itinerary.

    (very limited suitable anchor placements, a selection of cams is quite heavy and bulky, and the triggers and cams will be difficult to pull in the desired direction)
    gajslk likes this.
  3. Bootboy

    Bootboy Atwood Gear

    Messages:
    1,601
    Likes:
    1,810
    Location:
    Utah

    It's hard to think of a canyon where, if this even works (having an extensive climbing background leads me to believe it wouldn't), that you'd even have a half decent place to put a cam.

    It's important that you have an understanding of how these things work. I've placed hundreds and hundreds of cams and I am intimately familiar with the mechanical principles and nuances of their function.

    Think about how you remove these things, you actually push UP on the stem and in theory you don't actually move the lobes as so much as you move the axle into the crack to cause retraction.

    If there is ANY weight on the stem, the cam is engaged, pulling the trigger wires would in this case only add to the weight. The trigger wires are not a release mechanism. The forces on the stem relative to the wires need to be in OPPOSITE directions. The principle is that the initial net force for removal needs to INTO the crack.

    That said, depending on the degree of retraction of the lobes and the relative position of the wires in regards to the contact point, in theory, some placements may be less of a sure fire way to lose gear. Or, Less less likely to work. A flaring crack with a direct line of pull at a high degree of retraction with a rope that weighs next to nothing, might, just maybe could work.



    Put even 3-4 pounds of rope weight on the cam and you'll never get it back. If it works it'll be by dumb luck.

    Sorry
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2015
    gajslk and Deagol like this.
  4. Bootboy

    Bootboy Atwood Gear

    Messages:
    1,601
    Likes:
    1,810
    Location:
    Utah
    Btw, the placements in the last photo are really, really not good.
  5. levifackrell

    levifackrell

    Messages:
    55
    Likes:
    18
    Location:
    Sandy, Utah
    I'm ok with all the disappointment.You have to start somewhere coming up with new anchors


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  6. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

    Messages:
    872
    Likes:
    926
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    Hmmm...though...I dunno. Neat idear. I agree that you just can't pull the trigger on most cams and they disengage and tumble down. But, maybe some designs out there that might work.

    I've retrieved cams from a distance (small cam that walked into a crack out of fingers' reach). Usually a nut tool and a long piton or screwdriver or other tools. There used to be a device made by Leeper called a friend-of-a-friend. Was a slotted tool that an old Wild Country friend would set in, and, it pushed on the stem at the bottom of the cam as well as pulled on the triggers at the same time. So, a better retrieval mousetrap could be had.

    You might have something here. A device that would attach to a cam, have a finger on the bottom of the cam clip in loop that was positioned snug on the top of the loop (and where typically a following climber would use their thumb for retrieval) and a set of fingers over the cam trigger. Rigged so when you yanked on the pull cord, the force pushed and pulled at the same time.

    Could be done methinks.

    Hmmm.

    Something else that might work is Tricams. You could place a large tricam in the classic camming position. Attach a retrieval line to the top of the tri cam to pop it loose. Maybe drill a hole in the point that forms the third leg of the tripod. Yank there. Should release and pull down a tricam.

    More...hmmm....
  7. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

    Messages:
    872
    Likes:
    926
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    Actually...a simple solution to the cam retrieval thing would be to just tie a slip knot loop between the thumb loop and the trigger. You pull, the loop tightens and squeezes the loop and trigger at the same time. Voila? Hmm. Might could work.
  8. Bootboy

    Bootboy Atwood Gear

    Messages:
    1,601
    Likes:
    1,810
    Location:
    Utah

    While closer to working, the net force is still downward. The other problem remains that all 4 lobes still need to be retracted in unison to even have a chance

    The Tricam idea is one I've thought about before but the impracticality of lugging Tricams through a canyon and likely not finding any place to use them kinda put me off of it.

    1-2" wide, parallel sided cracks aren't exactly common in sandstone slots.
  9. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

    Messages:
    872
    Likes:
    926
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    Hmm...seemed to sorta work...Metolius and BD cam:

    cam release_0001. cam release_0002. cam release_0004.

    Interesting. Even with a bit of downward force on the cam (ala the rappel line weight), the cams all seemed to release with not much of a tug on the sling.

    Might have to try this out in the wild...
    kmanz likes this.
  10. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

    Messages:
    872
    Likes:
    926
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    Some canyons/areas they kinda are.

    Pine Creek has 'em. Had a climbing partner down climb that finger crack instead of doing the first rap.

    Here's one in a canyon near Kolob in Zion (rappeller's right):

    Zion Kolob+ 1.

    Here's a nice hand crack in North Wash:

    North Wash crack 1.

    Here's a corner hand crack at/above RP in Pleiades by Moab:

    Pleiades 3.

    I'd probably pay more attention to cracks in canyons for pro if I carried a set of cams...
    kmanz and Jman like this.
  11. Tom Collins

    Tom Collins

    Messages:
    529
    Likes:
    761
    Location:
    Woodland Hills, UT
    The other problem with this is do you want your cam tumbling down however long the drop is? It might be fine for the first few tumbles, but how long can it take that kind of abuse?
    kmanz and townsend like this.
  12. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

    Messages:
    872
    Likes:
    926
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    Gotta chuckle when I recall all the spicy "microfractures" chat about dropped gear a number of years back especially on rec.climbing.

    Cams are pretty durable. Under close inspection, if you don't see any visible damage that would preclude use, then, they're probably ok. Folks scour the base of El Cap for dropped gear.

    I got a #3 Friend stuck on a route in the mid 80's. Went back the next day (kind of a grind...back up to the Sail in Little Cottonwood). Beat the cam out with a hammer and a piton. Really scored the sides and flipped the cams sideways to retrieve it. I used it for years after that, and, still have it (not in use but, I'd aid climb off it). I've taken it apart and inspected it. Still functional.

    http://www.roadtoelcap.com/blog/the-5-biggest-safety-related-myths-in-rock-climbing

    From rec.climbing:

    "Ardito Gersen" posted this on rec.climbing a few years back:

    You know I have discovered the truth about dropped gear. It is not
    microfractures or any other such crap that can cause it to fail.
    Actually when the gear is dropped the universe has , for a
    microsecond, to face an incongruent situation. IT expected you to
    drop, not the gear. During that microsecond it takes for IT to adjust
    some of the common laws of Physics get suspended in a small area
    around the gear. The gear then does not "exist" anymore. Instead it
    enters a Schrodingen Kitten state of probable/improbable existence.

    It is during that period with the gear quickly fluctuating among
    dimensions that it becomes possessed by demons. Yes, you have read
    that correctly. DEMONS!!. They intertwine with the gear and it is
    those demons trying to get out that cause the so called
    "microfractures".Man you gotta be really careful because your rack may
    now be a demon nest. All you can do now is:

    A) Destroy the gear, to prevent the demons from causing any harm.
    Dropping it into a volcano seems to be fashionable again due to the
    influence of major Hollywood productions but I suggest an easier
    solution just dig a hole in the ground, put the gear in, cover with an
    adequate amount of thermite. Ignite a magnesium initiator on top of
    the pile. Watch the demons burn!

    B) Exorcise the demons. Contact the local representative of the Roman
    Catholic Church, make sure that the Exorcist , if they send one, is
    properly authorized by the local bishop,. There is only one authorized
    Exorcist by dioceses and he has to be appointed by the bishop. Wannabe
    exorcists are likely to compound the problem. If they are unavailable
    or too busy you can try the Shamanic method described below:

    Take off your clothes.

    -Use a Sharpie to mark the middle of your belly. But do it a few
    inches above or below true center , this is to avoid Demons to focus
    on your center. You will appear to them as a blur and if they try to
    posses you they are likely to come to the end of you and slip off.
    Unless they knot your ends first.


    -Cover the rest of your body with mysterious signs and inscriptions.
    They may read things like CE, EN 7306, 22KN, T, DMM, 9 etc... those
    are there to protect you against the demons entering your body, the
    more you have the better.

    -Cover yourself with lubricant oil, lest you get stuck in a different
    dimension.

    -Using a rope make a circle in the ground around the gear. Drive five
    expansion bolts into the ground at regular intervals. now the demons
    are contained. They have also took some of the qualities of the gear
    and they now hate fixed stuff.

    -Light fires around the circle. Attach headlamps to the top of ski
    poles and direct their beams towards the gear.

    -Put a tape of "Macarena" into a tape and play in a loop as loud as
    you can!

    -Get drunk and stoned ( you do not need instructions for this)

    -Run around the circle dancing with a bottle in one hand and an old
    issue of Rock and Ice on the other chanting the following formula:
    "Get the f*#k outta my gear you as#@&%es!!" or any other ranting of
    your liking, to the rhythm of the music.

    -Remember to fart as much as you can . That is to prove to the demons
    that you are a Tue Climber (tm). For an explanation of this do a
    Google search for "farts climber". If possible ignite a few of the
    farts (you do not need instructions for this either).

    -Keep on drinking!!

    -Sh#t into plastic bags and toss them at the gear while crying "MUD
    BAT!! MUD BAAAAAT!! INCOMING!!"

    -Read excerpts from the Rock and Ice mag (this is truly unbearable
    for the demons)

    -Collapse, be taken to the ER. Wake up. Stay in a mental institution
    for a while. Be released (hopefully)

    You can now use your gear without any fear, the demons have been now
    expelled to the nether regions where they lived before.

    I hope you find this helpful, let us know how it all went!

    Ardito.
    Taylor, gajslk, Bootboy and 2 others like this.
  13. levifackrell

    levifackrell

    Messages:
    55
    Likes:
    18
    Location:
    Sandy, Utah
    I ask the same question about potshots and sandtraps



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  14. Bootboy

    Bootboy Atwood Gear

    Messages:
    1,601
    Likes:
    1,810
    Location:
    Utah
    Sand traps empty, potshots are designed to take the abuse (some are anyway) and they are both made of nylon fabric. Not aluminum and steel.
  15. Matt Snow

    Matt Snow

    Messages:
    43
    Likes:
    59
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    I see what you did there.
  16. ratagonia

    ratagonia

    Messages:
    4,190
    Likes:
    5,076
    Location:
    Mount Carmel, Utah
    And, when they are compromised, they tend to show it.

    The myth is about "microcracks", which are a phenomenon in high-strength ceramics. Microcracks are very hard to detect. The aluminum and steel alloys used in things we use do not microcrack.

    Inspectability is important. Good thing is, dropped from a height, carabiners, ropes, camming devices, FiddleSticks, PotShots, SandTraps - almost everything we use, and compromise on safety or function can be discovered by inspection.

    Tom :moses:
  17. Bootboy

    Bootboy Atwood Gear

    Messages:
    1,601
    Likes:
    1,810
    Location:
    Utah

    I said nothing of the mythical microcracks.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2015
Similar Threads: canyoneering climbing
Forum Title Date
Meet Up Climbing/canyoneering Vegas area Dec 25, 2017
General Discussion Kid's canyoneering/climbing stuff Feb 26, 2015
Archives - Yahoo Canyons Group Sport climbing vs. Canyoneering Nov 30, 2011
Archives - Yahoo Canyons Group Arches NP Climbing and Canyoneering Management Plan Mar 7, 2011
Archives - Yahoo Canyons Group Climbing and Canyoneering Management Plan for Arches Feb 11, 2011
Archives - Yahoo Canyons Group Arches Canyoneering and Climbing Management Plan - Open for Review Jul 12, 2010