Send us a suggestion!

Tech Tip: Question Stop Me From SPINNING! (on long rappels)

Discussion in 'Tech Tips and Gear' started by ratagonia, Nov 24, 2014.

  1. ratagonia

    ratagonia

    Messages:
    3,725
    Likes:
    4,263
    Location:
    Mount Carmel, Utah
    Sometimes on long rappels, free rappels to be exact, you start to spin, and spin faster, and faster! MAKE IT STOP!

    HOW? is the question.

    One thing that works is for the bottom belayer to step out of line, away from the fall line, and apply a small force to the line. Once the spinning is stopped, maintaining a small force will prevent it from starting up again.

    Other ideas?

    Tom
  2. GLD

    GLD

    Messages:
    95
    Likes:
    36
    Location:
    Denver occasionally
    a small reaction control wheel in your backpack with an attached IMU and controller, a low power blue tooth link to your cell phone to use it's sensors and processing, or a manual control.
  3. GLD

    GLD

    Messages:
    95
    Likes:
    36
    Location:
    Denver occasionally
    Maybe the fix is we don't stop it, we permit the spinning to happen. I'm assuming the real problem is nausea so perhaps we implant a neural device between the cochlea (or whatever the fluid thing in your ear is called) and close your eyes as you rap. Maybe acclimatization training? Get a swivel chair and just spin, spin, spin!!!
    madman_lee likes this.
  4. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Is that an X slot?

    Messages:
    1,281
    Likes:
    977
    I experience spin often, and wondered if it is mostly due to the rap device. Quote from Hank below where he states he has never had an issue. I have, so I may be doing things wrong?

    Or do all my ropes now tend to have "twists" in them, due to improper techniques or use. Certainly deploying the rope so the end does not touch the ground can help.

    Next few trips I'm going to take an ATC with me and experiment a bit more. See if things improve, etc.

    Kuenn and Rapterman like this.
  5. ratagonia

    ratagonia

    Messages:
    3,725
    Likes:
    4,263
    Location:
    Mount Carmel, Utah
    Unitarian?

    :moses:
  6. GLD

    GLD

    Messages:
    95
    Likes:
    36
    Location:
    Denver occasionally
    No, I don't think that fluid thing is called unitarian.

    I'm sure that's not what you meant but I'm missing the reference or point.
  7. ratagonia

    ratagonia

    Messages:
    3,725
    Likes:
    4,263
    Location:
    Mount Carmel, Utah
    How many Unitarians does it take to change a light bulb?

    We choose not to make a statement either in favour of or against the need for a light bulb. However, if in your own journey, you have found that light bulbs work for you, that is fine. You are invited to write a poem or compose a modern dance about your personal relationship with your light bulb. Present it next month at our annual Light Bulb Sunday Service, in which we will explore a number of light bulb traditions, including incandescent, fluorescent, 3-way, long-life, and tinted, all of which are equally valid paths to luminescence, or sitting here in the dark.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2014
  8. Rapterman

    Rapterman

    Messages:
    874
    Likes:
    1,189
    :D Hilarious!
    We have noticed that:
    ropes that are twisted tend to induce spin
    and rappel devices that are twisting the rope tend to induce spin
    and the two together definitely tend to induce spin.
    Also being lowered on a twist inducing set-up (like a figure 8 contingency or Munter) will spin you 'till you hurl.
    Tom's bottom belayer tip works great-
    Another reason to send your buddy down first.....
    Kuenn likes this.
  9. Kuenn

    Kuenn

    Messages:
    1,285
    Likes:
    1,295
    My opinion.

    Reasons for spin in descending order (pun intended)
    • The device.
    o Some devices actually enhance or even create spin (figure eight types). Has everything to do with the rope's path as it passes through the device.
    o The tighter the grip on the rope the more apt to being subject to the rope's outer/inner dynamics.​
    • The flake style.
    o Coiled (sometime referred to as caver-coil) vs Butterfly vs Stuffed (Coiled being the absolute worse method, adds twist back.)​
    • The rope.
    o Quality of mfg process; i.e. sheath's braid has significant spiral or excessive inner core twist.
    o New rope (first few rides will usually mitigate most spin factors)​

    Logic I’m not really sold on (need stronger arguments)
    • Rappelling the same direction on a given rope.
    o Have tested this starting with a new rope, marking one end as the anchor end. Over time did not observe what I would classify as a significant difference.​
    • Alternating rappel directions on a given rope.
    o Same results as above.​
    • Whether the rope is free hanging at the bottom, or not.
    o While we’ve all observed the twisted-tangled mess form during a rappel at the bottom, that twist (for the most part) is being extruded by the rappel or created by the device and does not necessarily contribute to the spin of the person rappelling. It is the results of the device in use and or the dynamics of the rope in play.
    o Certainly, free-hanging helps get the twist out of a rope and can be helpful to the next person on rope. However, if left unchecked, the twist doesn't automatically recoil back into the hanging rope...it just sits there like Ramen noodles.​

    Most of this could be categorized as anecdotal evidence. So, I submit this video as exhibit "A", with the conclusion that the device plays the primary role in mitigating spin factors. (Video: Gopro rappel from El Capitan in 2010. Skip to 1:58 to bypass the theatrics. During the next 3 minutes of descent no spins observed; probably close to 1000' traveled of the 2650'.) The rope is 3000' of static PMI 11mm. Yes, fat stuff, but it can spin just as well as the skinny stuff.

    No, I’m not recommending 24” rappelling racks for canyoneering :woot:, this is only to give some assertion to the conclusion.

    Edit: The conclusion being; if you are spinning too much for your liking, try a different descending device. There are lots of options out there, with new ones coming out every year - along with a few oldies but goodies.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2014
  10. barleywino

    barleywino

    Messages:
    35
    Likes:
    19
  11. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

    Messages:
    222
    Likes:
    89
    Location:
    South Florida
    Chicken & Egg: Which came first: twist from the rope, or twist from the device?
  12. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

    Messages:
    1,209
    Likes:
    1,320
    Laid rope was the first "device" :)
    Kuenn likes this.
  13. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

    Messages:
    222
    Likes:
    89
    Location:
    South Florida
    Then "hands" (and maybe back & shoulders or waist) would be the first device...no?<g> Laid rope would likely have twist, since that's how it's made?
    Kuenn and hank moon like this.
  14. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

    Messages:
    1,209
    Likes:
    1,320
    Things that are related, but not identical:

    - spin and twist
    - experiencing twist (common) and having a problem with twist (uncommon).
    - experiencing spin (uncommon) and having a problem with spin (not yet)

    hank
  15. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

    Messages:
    222
    Likes:
    89
    Location:
    South Florida
    So "twist" is to the rope (as in coil, kink)...and "spin" is to the rappeller (as in turn, circle)...?
    hank moon and Kuenn like this.
  16. Kuenn

    Kuenn

    Messages:
    1,285
    Likes:
    1,295
    Can you say "Goldline".

    Cut my teeth on this stuff, back, back, back in the day. Didn't matter what descending device you used - you were in for a merry-go-round ride.

    [​IMG]

    Hank, I can probably dig up some of this stuff if you're up for a retro trip.
    Rapterman, hank moon and Bootboy like this.
  17. barleywino

    barleywino

    Messages:
    35
    Likes:
    19
    Plus we didn't wear harnesses back then--- just tied in with a bowline on a coil (or 1" webbing diaper seat if rappelling)
  18. Kuenn

    Kuenn

    Messages:
    1,285
    Likes:
    1,295
    Ah yes, the old diaper (Swiss) seat. Sure glad harness technology caused those things to become extinct!

    Barleywino, you're welcome to join us on the retro trip - BYOSS
    Rapterman likes this.
  19. barleywino

    barleywino

    Messages:
    35
    Likes:
    19
    OK i'll bring my sticht plate and stubai steel biner...and my trusty Autolite carbide cap lamp in case we have to rappel in the dark
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2014
    Rapterman, hank moon and Kuenn like this.
  20. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

    Messages:
    1,209
    Likes:
    1,320
    Ha Ha...me and Rodger Ling once had a whole photo shoot planned up using vintage gear like that. I've done rope time on goldline and glad that Larry Kern and Delores Mantle decided to get hitched.

    I'm still up for that photo shoot (might as well make it a video, now) and bet Rodger is, too.

    Got rappel spool? :)

    LMK

    hank

    p.s. that old mil-spec goldline...used to be the standard "rappelling rope" you could find collecting dust behind the front door of the army surplus store.
    Rapterman likes this.
Similar Threads: Stop SPINNING
Forum Title Date
Accidents and Near Misses Tim Cahill's Heart-Stopping Adventure Jun 20, 2015
Buy and Sell Bargain on Petzl STOP Dec 13, 2014
Tech Tips and Gear Stopper Knots - Bad idea, or the Worst Idea?? Oct 10, 2014
General Discussion Getting stuck in Van Buren County cave doesn't stop 71-year-old caver Feb 5, 2014
Tech Tips and Gear Brake Bar Rack vs. Stop vs. ??? Aug 8, 2013
Archives - Yahoo Canyons Group Stopping rope grooves....was illusions update Nov 1, 2012