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TECH~ Homemade Cowtail

Discussion in 'Archives - Yahoo Canyons Group' started by Stevee B, Jan 25, 2005.

  1. Stevee B

    Stevee B Guest

    Sorry for being such a bumbly, but I had one more question for you old grizzly bears. A little while back we had a discussion about daisy chain misuse, cowtails, energycas, and the like. I'm thinking of making my own cowstail from an old section of 11 mm climbing rope. Are there any sort of standard specs or webpages that illustrate best style? I'm thinking this will be a *safer* attachement than my daisy for wet canyons, in addition to having added versatility for converting to ascending & rescue rigs.

    Anywho, tips on homemade cowtail construction welcome! S
  2. Stevee B

    Stevee B Guest

    Here were some specs I found, btw: short tail = ~11" and long tail = ~21" I assume, tie the harness connection point with a figure eight-bight? Figure eight bights on the ends? S

    --- In Yahoo Canyons Group, "Stevee B" <SteveBrezovec@h...> wrote:
    Sorry for being such a bumbly, but I had one more question for you old grizzly bears. > A little while back we had a discussion about daisy chain misuse, cowtails, energycas, and > the like. I'm thinking of making my own cowstail from an old section of 11 mm climbing > rope. Are there any sort of standard specs or webpages that illustrate best style? I'm > thinking this will be a *safer* attachement than my daisy for wet canyons, in addition to > having added versatility for converting to ascending & rescue rigs.
    Anywho, tips on homemade cowtail construction welcome! > S
  3. Tom Jones

    Tom Jones Guest

    How about: Buy the Petzl Spelygyca (aka Energyca). It is the manufactured two-sling clip-in sling set, that attaches to the harness with a rapide. The two slings are different lengths, and the webbing they are built from is quite stout. Biners are held at the ends with the Petzl String. People usually walk with them clipped to their left-side gear loop.

    Good things: Works great, very handy. Two different lengths - usually one will be the correct length for what you want. Each can be shortened by tying a knot, and the webbing is thick enough that even after being fully weighted, it can be easily untied. You can also run the sling through something, then clip back to the harness, for an even shorter length.

    The lengths are not adjustable, but then, for canyoning, they need not be finely-adjustable like a climber's daisy chain.

    Bad things: it is meant to be rapid-linked to the metal ring of the Petzl Canyon harness, and is a little awkward rapid-linked to a belay loop. The Rapid Link is kind of heavy.

    Poor-Man's Spelygeca: because of the weight, I've gone to the poor- man's style (or backcountry style). Take an 11/16" over the shoulder sling, girth hitch to your belay loop, put a small locking biner on the end and hold in place with a slip knot or String. One or two, your choice. I end up tying a knot in the sling to stabilize the center, to keep it from catching on things. Now that I'm thinking of it, I should try sewing a sewn sling closed so it will be a little nicer.

    Rope? Bulky.

    And I hate daisy chains. I spend a lot of time watching people awkwardly clip-up their daisy chain with one hand while holding still on rappel, having just unclipped from the anchor. You gotta clip-it-up cause otherwise it dangles dangerously. It's slow. And that extra length has no real benefit, in a canyon. With the Energyca, you unclip from the anchor, then clip it to your gear loop. GO GO GO!!! Works good.

    YMMV

    Tom

    --- In Yahoo Canyons Group, "Stevee B" <SteveBrezovec@h...> wrote:
    Sorry for being such a bumbly, but I had one more question for you old grizzly bears. > A little while back we had a discussion about daisy chain misuse, cowtails, energycas, and the like. I'm thinking of making my own cowstail from an old section of 11 mm climbing rope. Are there any sort of standard specs or webpages that illustrate best style? I'm > thinking this will be a *safer* attachement than my daisy for wet canyons, in addition to having added versatility for converting to ascending & rescue rigs.
    Anywho, tips on homemade cowtail construction welcome! > S
  4. Or you can pick up 3-4 feet of omni-sling, clip and secure a locking biner on each end, then run another biner through whichever loop is most suitable. Simple, adjustable and cheaper than an energyca.

    jim

    In a message dated 1/25/2005 3:07:00 PM Eastern Standard Time, "Tom Jones" ratagoni@xmission.com> writes:


    >How about: Buy the Petzl Spelygyca (aka Energyca).  It is the >manufactured two-sling clip-in sling set, that attaches to the >harness with a rapide.  The two slings are different lengths, and >the webbing they are built from is quite stout.  Biners are held at >the ends with the Petzl String.  People usually walk with them >clipped to their left-side gear loop.
    Good things:  Works great, very handy.  Two different lengths - >usually one will be the correct length for what you want.  Each can >be shortened by tying a knot, and the webbing is thick enough that >even after being fully weighted, it can be easily untied.  You can >also run the sling through something, then clip back to the harness, >for an even shorter length.
    The lengths are not adjustable, but then, for canyoning, they need >not be finely-adjustable like a climber's daisy chain.
    Bad things: it is meant to be rapid-linked to the metal ring of the >Petzl Canyon harness, and is a little awkward rapid-linked to a >belay loop.  The Rapid Link is kind of heavy.
    Poor-Man's Spelygeca:  because of the weight, I've gone to the poor- >man's style (or backcountry style).  Take an 11/16" over the >shoulder sling, girth hitch to your belay loop, put a small locking >biner on the end and hold in place with a slip knot or String.  One >or two, your choice.  I end up tying a knot in the sling to >stabilize the center, to keep it from catching on things.  Now that >I'm thinking of it, I should try sewing a sewn sling closed so it >will be a little nicer.
    Rope?  Bulky.
    And I hate daisy chains. I spend a lot of time watching people >awkwardly clip-up their daisy chain with one hand while holding >still on rappel, having just unclipped from the anchor.  You gotta >clip-it-up cause otherwise it dangles dangerously.  It's slow.  And >that extra length has no real benefit, in a canyon.  With the >Energyca, you unclip from the anchor, then clip it to your gear >loop.  GO GO GO!!!  Works good.
    YMMV
    Tom
    >--- In Yahoo Canyons Group, "Stevee B" <SteveBrezovec@h...
    wrote: >
    > Sorry for being such a bumbly, but I had one more question for you >old grizzly bears.   >> A little while back we had a discussion about daisy chain misuse, >cowtails, energycas, and the like.  I'm thinking of making my own >cowstail from an old section of 11 mm climbing rope.  Are there any >sort of standard specs or webpages that illustrate best style?  I'm >> thinking this will be a *safer* attachement than my daisy for wet >canyons, in addition to having added versatility for converting to >ascending & rescue rigs. >
    > Anywho, tips on homemade cowtail construction welcome! >> S


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  5. We have been discussing the cowstail possibilities on the cave rescue team. One of our guys runs the mechanical engineering lab at UC Riverside. We do static and dynamic testing there on hard goods and soft goods. On our list is to test various cowstails. Some have the opinion that 9mm high stretch is just as safe as 11 mm low stretch. One consideration has to do with the amount of rope in play. Fall factor concepts tend to negate that concern. So, our jury is still out. When pressed, we say 11 mm high stretch.

    The short tail can be measured by sticking your elbow in your belly just above the short tail. If a handled ascender is attached to it, the ascender will end up in your hand. The long cowstail is measured as previously described, eye level.

    --- In Yahoo Canyons Group, "Stevee B" <SteveBrezovec@h...> wrote:
    Sorry for being such a bumbly, but I had one more question for you old grizzly bears. > A little while back we had a discussion about daisy chain misuse, cowtails, energycas, and > the like. I'm thinking of making my own cowstail from an old section of 11 mm climbing > rope. Are there any sort of standard specs or webpages that illustrate best style? I'm > thinking this will be a *safer* attachement than my daisy for wet canyons, in addition to > having added versatility for converting to ascending & rescue rigs.
    Anywho, tips on homemade cowtail construction welcome! > S
  6. ionsmuse

    ionsmuse Guest

    Another option is a Metolius adjustable daisy. Not really what you want, I know, seeing that it wouldn't work for the rescue/ascending/wet canyon tricks. However, it is the shit for aiding out of potholes, is very durable, sandproof, and the length adjusts with one hand. Downside: technically body weight only, not runner strength. More a dry canyon thing. If you get one for canyons, cut it short so you won't trip on it.

    -d
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