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UT: Zion Spry Zion 9-2-2018 Two New Bolt Anchors

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by ratagonia, Sep 4, 2018.

  1. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    Did Spry this weekend with folks from Arizona. The canyon presented well, being full of water, but the water was not very cold. A little icky in a few spots, but also clean in others. Many of the anchors had been recently re-webbed, a result I suspect of the previous webbing getting chewed up by recent flash flood events. Several of these were done with a single strand of webbing to each bolt, which while acceptable in general is not really best practice for a high-traffic canyon like Spry. We replaced with the standard doubled-webbing rigging in several places.

    After the black slot rappel, I was surprised to see only a single piece of webbing on the big tree, and no webbing on the block. I removed the (new) webbing on the tree and used it to rig the block. We rapped from the block into the slot pool below, which was tip top full.

    My last trip through Spry in June, I noted two places where rope grooves were getting out of control. One of my objectives on this trip was to at least get a start on putting in bolt anchors in these two places to stop further rope grooving. Circumstances conspired to allow me to complete both anchors.

    After rapping off the block into the pool, the rappel can be (has been) continued off the block anchor webbing down the next drop to "The Beach". Many people just rappel off the big tree, because they do not want to get cold and wet (which begs the question of why they went canyoneering...), but I think the under-the-block rap has gotten more popular of late. Several serious rope grooves have started there, which in addition to being unsightly can also make the pull even more difficult than it was before. I put in a two-bolt anchor ( 2 Powers Powerbolts 1/2" x 2-3/4" mix of stainless and galvanized steel) out of the waterflow and up fairly high. Non-tall people might need to do one not-difficult chimney move to get up to the anchor.

    Spry Bolts Sept2018 A-03.

    Thank you to the patience of my partners, even though they were getting cold, as the clouds were blocking the warmth of the sun, and the beach was less beachy than usual.

    The second spot I was concerned about was the 2nd to last rappel IN the canyon, the one after the downslide into the mandatory pool. We usually rush through this spot. The anchor has been two bolts in the floor of the canyon slightly to the side, which are old bolts (stud-bolts... hmm, shoulda taken a picture). Because the anchor is on the floor of the canyon, the ropes have cut a V groove about 6 feet below that both ropes will lie in, making the pull quite difficult. Both ropes have no other place they can be. (70 foot rappel).

    Spry Bolts Sept2018 B-02.

    I put in a two-bolt anchor ( 2 Powers Powerbolts 1/2" x 2-3/4" mix of stainless and galvanized steel) out of the waterflow and up fairly high. Non-tall people might need to do one easy chimney move to get up to the anchor. The webbing was removed from the old bolts, and the old bolts were left in place. I rigged the new anchor in a flow-conscious style which may confuse some parties... probably a mistake. (Bolt anchors where they receive waterflow should be rigged without the two bolts tied together. In this case, I put a short loop of webbing on one bolt with a rapide on the end that then matched length to the second bolt which had two rapides on it. The rope is inserted through two rapides.)

    Pictures - not so good, as the sun was in my eyes, my camera was wet and foggy and I was tired and just wanted to get out of there at this point.

    We made our way down the boulders, and then up to my place for a post-canyon feast!

    Tom

    Spry Bolts Sept2018 A-01.

    Spry Bolts Sept2018 A-02.

    Spry Bolts Sept2018 B-01.
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
  2. Canyon Monkey

    Canyon Monkey Useful Idiot

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    Thanks for all that you do for the community!
  3. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

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    Curious what you mean by "mix"...the bolt pieces themselves are mixed? Or, you used a plated hanger with stainless bolts?
  4. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    I had 2 Stainless bolts and 2 Galvanized bolts in my bolt bag and I put them in. Not sure which bolts ended up where, but at this point there are zero bolts in my bolt bag. Petzl stainless hangers on all.

    Tom
  5. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

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    No worries for many years at a non-watercourse location and given the size. Still...not "best practice" to mix metals.

    Plus... could always stick a magnet or look at the head stamp...

    Thanks for the new anchors!

    How long to drill each? Ugh...power is sooooo nice.
  6. Scott Patterson

    Scott Patterson

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    Is this because they would corrode at different rates?
  7. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    The rock in Spry is quite soft, but not so soft as that it does not drill. Bad stance at the first one, comfortable stance at the second. About 45 minutes for each 2-bolt anchor. Power tools is cheating!!! Using my "drill 3/8", ream to 1/2" " method, I got really nice holes and they set up just fine.

    Tom
  8. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    Using a mix of metals can produce a galvanic corrosion cell. However, it requires an electrolyte to run the cell, and that is usually not present in Zion.

    The Powers Stainless Steel Powerbolts mix materials too, and have some paper pieces between some of the parts. I think the voltage difference on different stainless steels is pretty small, though.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galvanic_corrosion

    Tom
  9. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

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    Yeah, not a marine environment...interior of the west not a huge concern...but...plated bolts do corrode much much faster, galvanic cell or not. Certainly replacing them around here. Stainless won't require an update in any of our lifetimes. Good piece of mind.

    I think the different pieces of the stainless powerbolts are 303 and 304. Nearly no difference.

    For fun, I stuck a volt meter on a stainless bolt and plated hanger, and vice versa. Not sure of the results, but, there is a voltage drop in the expected direction. There'd need to be a solution of sorts (and the right type of solution) to to actually have noticeable material loss.

    Yeah, power drills make the job pretty easy. Also produces an exceptionally fine hole. Also helps stave off carpal tunnel issues...ha ha...

    Cheers.
  10. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    I think I got one stainless and one galvanized at each station. Which was my intent. Who makes galvanized hangers? I guess I have been using Petzl (and Fixe) stainless ones for a long time, have not noticed others.

    And also, I think the porous standstone helps, as it allows the holes to drain well. By 'around here', do you mean in the Wasatch, non-porous rock, wetter environment?

    T
  11. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

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    Fusion, Fixe and ClimbTech all still sell plated hangers.

    Yeah, round here is the City with the prevailing wind full of salty dirt...ha ha. As you probably recall, our rock types range from very porous limestone (AF, Hell Gate, Devil's Castle, etc), granite (LCC, etc), quartzite (BCC), sandstone (Parleys), cobble in a matrix (Echo, Maple)...

    But, down in your neck of the woods, there's gobs of carbon/plated bolts that are rusting away and some have been replaced (ASCA work on Moonlight, etc). Look at the work the folks in Red Rocks and the local St. George climbers have done for anchor replacement. All stainless. Getting rid of carbon/plated.

    I snapped a rusted through fixed angle on Spaceshot a number of years ago. Broke just past the eye.

    Here's from the Grail:

    Grail bolt streaks.

    All those vertical streaks are coming from bolt placements. NW Arizona...climate pretty similar to where you are, eh? Maybe drier.

    All stainless, all the time.
  12. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    [Nerdtalk=on]

    There are 5 metal parts to the Powers Powerbolt Stainless Steel, six if you include the hanger.

    1. The bolt has a fiber washer on it to separate it from the steel washer. The bolt says "S.S304C". And also ZC, which I think indicates the length.

    2. The Steel washer is twice as thick as on the Galv Steel bolts - makes the stainless easy to identify.

    3. Below that is a ~2mm metal spacer... then the blue soft-plastic spacer.

    4. Then the sleeve, which appears to be the same SS as the bolt.

    5. Then the cone, which to me looks like galvanized steel... hard to say.

    Also of note, the sleeve says: 1/2" / 13mm. Which may explain why my 12mm Petzl bolt hanger did not fit over the sleeve, and not over the 2mm spacer. I ended up swapping the spacer and the blue plastic so the hanger would sit on the blue plastic.

    This is the old-style SS Powerbolt --- not sure if you have the same kind, Brian, or the new style Powerbolt+ (which is what I get in the Galvanized).

    T
  13. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    Hmmmm. I've been considering pulling some of my (and your) early efforts here in Zion and see how they are faring. Maybe I should move that up the list...
  14. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

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    Zinc plated 303 stainless. Which is why it looks shiny and galvanized. But, its only mildly attracted to a magnet. Old version or new methinks, especially in 1/2". See below from Powers:

    Powerbolt spec.JPG

    The 1/2" Powerbolt in stainless is pretty much the gold standard for the ASCA in especially softer rock types. Glue-ins being the best for some softer rock situations.

    Yeah...old anchors. The one that I've been worried about for a few years is that aluminum cave hanger (Petzl or Kong?) we placed in Middle Echo. Glad there's another non-aluminum hanger to back it up...

    If you got anchor work in mind, give me a shout. I've usually got some 1/2" Powerbolts and/or hangers with rings or rapides and rings available for anchor work. Etc.
  15. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    I've converted my arsenal to Stainless now... I'm not entirely convinced it is necessary, but might as well go full on. I'm only placing a handful a year. Was in a hurry putting the kit together for Sunday, and was not expecting to place more than 2 bolts to start the project. As it worked out, there was time to get the whole thing done.

    T
  16. Yellow Dart

    Yellow Dart It's only hubris if I fail.

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    Was through the day before you and hauled out about 60' of very colorful webbings, including a bunch from the 3 bolts above the dark slot; apparently people don't like going down that watercourse when there is a swiss-cheese rock face to rap on right there... :thumbsdown:
  17. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    (sigh)
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