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

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

  1. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

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    OMG the one with the 3-D threaded arrow-head on the gate?
  2. barleywino

    barleywino

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    Yep
    Thing was heavier than a rappel rack
  3. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    I learned to rappel on a steel biner like that...with just 2 wraps of the rope thru the biner...no knots, no hitches...that's how we were taught. It worked...I'm still here.<g> Worked for Aussie style, too. Don't remember what rope we were using...probably selective memory.<g>
  4. Bootboy

    Bootboy Atwood Gear

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    That's how I learned, but with 3 raps.

    The military still teaches that technique, or so a friend tells me.

    You still need two biners though, one in between the rap biner and your harness so the moving rope doesn't burn through your harness.
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2014
  5. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    Don't remember the 2 biners, think the harness itself had a steel ring where the biner clipped. Guess the number of wraps would depend on the type & size of the rope. Have no clue what size rope we were using...I used what they gave me...ignorance is bliss at age 18.<g> Long time ago.
  6. Bootboy

    Bootboy Atwood Gear

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    Gotcha.

    It's a good technique to know in a pinch I think. Emergency lowering, dropped devices, etc
  7. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

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    I remember reading an army publication sometime back in the 80s that documented the number of military carabiner-wrap rappel accidents and concluded that though the technique was perhaps more dangerous than, say, using a standard rappel device (which required more training), the benefits (minimal training, easy to remember, cost, etc.) outweighed the negatives, including the "acceptable losses."
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  8. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

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    Hey Mountaineer, can you clarify a bit?

    1. What is your problem or issue with spin? Physical and/or mental discomfort? Nausea? Crappy photos? Other?
    2. How spinny is the spin? Frequency of rotation?
    3. When you have spin, have you eliminated rope-related factors in trying to determine the cause of the spin?

    Curious,

    hank
  9. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    I'm also thinking rappelling left-handed might help.

    T
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  10. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    I dunno', Hank. I didn't know there was such a thing as a standard rappel device in the early 70s. A standard rappel device was the steel biner.<g> I weighed 135 then, so 2 wraps was plenty.<g> Might have to be 3 wraps now...
  11. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    I'm curious, Tom. Is that because of the rope construction?
  12. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    No.

    The path through your device puts a spin on the rope. If everyone raps right handed, then everyone is putting a right-handed twist in the rope. If people alternated left and right handed raps, maybe the net result would be neutral.

    Tom
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  13. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    Ah...so just like in baseball, "lefties" are a very valuable commodity...<g>

    Would the "effect" be the same by reversing the rope? Granted, not as immediately effective as alternating raps.
  14. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

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    to clarify: I mean "standard" in the sense of "purpose-built for rappelling," i.e. devices that were in use at that time, such as Figure 8, brake bar rack, carabiner/brake bar, sticht plate, bobbin, etc. Lots of choices even back then. Though most casual "sport rappelling" was probably done mil-style with a carabiner wrap.

    And perhaps you mean "standard" in the sense of "most commonly used?"
  15. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    No. When you reverse back up the rope, we usually use tools that do not impart spin, so it would have no effect. Also, then you would be back at the top of the rappel... which does not help in getting down the canyon.

    Is that what you meant?

    Tom
  16. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    No.

    When you reverse the rope, it does not change the direction of the spin.

    Tom
  17. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    I meant the steel biner and double wrap was all I knew back then, had no clue about anything else. Many years later, I've used a Figure 8 and a few other devices on climbing walls and Ropes/COPE courses, played with quite a few more over the last year while evaluating gear to use in Zion.

    Zion is the first "rock" I've been on since I was 19. Enjoyed that immensely...even with all the hiking at altitude.<g> I was very happy with the ATS, no complaints, no problems. We did have some twists in the rope on the last 2 long raps, took them out while stuffing the ropes back in the bags.
  18. hank moon

    hank moon lovely ligatures

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    Were these new(ish) ropes?

    And thanks for clarification re: "standard." Lots of folks learned to rappel 'biner wrap in the military and (presumably) continue to do so. At least I have seen a lot of "sport rappelling" done this way by ex-military folk. Wonder if 'biner wrap is still the military (grunt) standard?
  19. Terry LeBlanc

    Terry LeBlanc

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    Yep, a fairly new 9.2mm Canyoneer, first trip to Zion for the rope. My son-in-law and daughter did Refrigerator with it while I was in the ZAC ODB class 2 days before, so it wasn't "brand new". Twists weren't that bad...I was feeding and straightening while my son-in-law stuffed after those raps, didn't have any trouble getting them out fairly quickly. All rapped right-handed.

    Dunno' if 'biner wrap is still standard, but based on a video I stumbled on from 2012, it was still being taught at this place for military & LE. I noticed it.<g> They also used a Figure 8 in the video. Have no clue is this is "standard", or just where they start.
  20. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Is that an X slot?

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    Hi Hank -

    I appreciate your questions, your follow-up, and comments from others here. Good stuff.

    I usually spin 1-2x/100', sometimes a bit more. Only occurs on the free air raps (duh - foot control). I haven't taken extra care or thought into eliminating rope-relating factors in determining the cause of spin.

    Spin for me is probably more a mental discomfort. Overall it really doesn't bother me too much, however if I had a choice I would prefer not to spin. I don't get nausea, and photos aren't an issue. Similarly I used to be able to run all day at Lagoon, but now I slow down a bit. Getting too much spinning fun becomes a bit uncomfortable after a few hours now. ;-) Maybe a sign of old age? Or as my son would say, "just man up".

    Just got back from doing Hogwarts, Razorback, yesterday...Used the good old ATC. Same stuffed rope, and I didn't have any spin. I need to try some better big air drops next round, as I believe even an ATC will spin you (when coupled with rope-related factors).
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