Starting A Trad Rack

Post here for all your gear questions, rants and raves. Ask about gear before you buy it and find out what others are using. NOTE: this forum is NOT for gear sales.

JonoJ
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Real Name: Jonathan Joseph
Location: Cape Town

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby JonoJ » Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:15 pm

Andy wrote:Thanks for the advice everyone!:thumright
I am thinking of buying a rack of 10 Black Diamond nuts for R950 for starters.
I can use some gear from a firend as well.

Andy


Good start. If I may add my 2c........ start off with a full set of nuts - also get yourself some slings (four 60cm's, and two 120cm's), and a biner for each sling. (I assume you have a set of quickdraws already).

Play with your nuts when ever you can (hehe) ...... sew up sport routes between bolts ..... test different placements (get to know their sizes well) .... play around with some funky nut placements (opposing nuts in horizontal cracks, making nests of small nuts and equalizing them, etc) .... Get John Long's "Climbing Anchors". You can easily spend a year doing this. Oh and very importantly.... get a nut pick!!!

Then get yourself a few hexes (Wild Country on dyneema a great). Be prepared for a barrage of insults from hex haters however. And then start gathering cams as and when you can afford them.

Try holding off on buying cams for at least a year (use this time to save for a bunch perhaps). This will give you time to get really proficient with passive gear (nuts, hexes, even small tortoises - be wary of these though, they tend to walk, and don't forget to learn how to place slings - you can get super creative and have bomber pro this way) ..... remember many many many worthy routes were opened and subsequently repeated for many years on just nuts and slings.

Lekker, enjoy!

Andy
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Real Name: Andy Court
Location: Cape Town

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby Andy » Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:43 pm

Thansk for your help.
What length do you want your slings?
if your not living on the Edge...
... YOUR TAKING UP TOO MUCH SPACE!

JonoJ
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Real Name: Jonathan Joseph
Location: Cape Town

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby JonoJ » Mon Apr 12, 2010 6:44 pm

Generally having four 60cm slings and two 120cm slings will be more than ample for most routes (these can be used as is, or doubled to halve the length).

When placing nuts it's always a good idea to extend with a sling or at least a quickdraw. Rope drag, and the vibration it causes, will often cause an unextended nut to pop out of place when you climb above it. Not always, but often enough. Determining how much extention you place on it is something you'll have to practice - it all depends on the direction of the crack it's in, and in which direction you'll be climbing once you've passed it. Also depends on whether you need to take into account the features above the placement (this will apply for any piece placed) ...... you don't want a short-clipped piece of gear causing the rope to chafe around a lip or other such feature. Beware of your first piece of gear at the start of a traverse or before entering a roof..... the fall-force and fall-directions involved in making that piece pop out (particularly passive pro), when climbing beyond it, aren't always that obvious. Extend just to be sure (unless of course you feel the extension will allow you to hit the deck or a ledge after a fall).

Andy
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Real Name: Andy Court
Location: Cape Town

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby Andy » Tue Apr 13, 2010 2:26 pm

Sorry i'm a real biginner but is a 30cm sling the whole length or just one side?
if your not living on the Edge...
... YOUR TAKING UP TOO MUCH SPACE!

JonoJ
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Real Name: Jonathan Joseph
Location: Cape Town

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby JonoJ » Tue Apr 13, 2010 4:22 pm

That would be the entire length if you had to put 2 biners on it and turn it into a quickdraw.

Andy
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Real Name: Andy Court
Location: Cape Town

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby Andy » Tue Apr 13, 2010 8:22 pm

Cool i got it. :)
if your not living on the Edge...
... YOUR TAKING UP TOO MUCH SPACE!

Neil G
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Real Name: Neil Grimmer

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby Neil G » Wed Apr 14, 2010 2:07 pm

JonoJ wrote: When placing nuts it's always a good idea to extend with a sling or at least a quickdraw.

A query/note regarding this procedure. When extending with a sling, should the sling not be connected to the eye of the nut wire with a ‘biner rather than directly to the eye ..? (Of course this may be exactly what you implied and I’m just pondering needlessly on some minutiae; sorry) I am currently in the process of trying to educate myself about trad and safety and thus reading all that can lay my hands on concerning the subject. One of the texts I picked up (*) notes the following:
“Connecting with a sling directly around the wire is unacceptably dangerous. You might, of course, have to extend the running belay from time to time, and the same theory applies.”
A little earlier in the book when describing the Larksfoot (pulling a loop of sling through an anchor and then threading the bight that comes out directly through the main loop followed by pulling tight, for example, the construction you make when fixing a locking carabiner with a sling to your belay loop):
“It is quick and convenient to do [connect rope of sling to an anchor], but in some instances, such as extending wire runners, it is dangerous to use.”
The reasons for this are not offered and my interpretation leads me to think that the small surface area of the wire would cut through the sling when put under the load of a fall, as would occur when a sling or rope is placed through a bolt hanger on a sport lead. However, am I correct in my belief that extending a sling directly from broader, plastic insulated wire of a cam is safe?

* The Complete Guide to Rope Technique – a comprehensive handbook for climbers, 2nd Edition, 2007, Nigel Shepherd, FalconGuides (two even earlier editions under a different name in 1990 and 1998).
Last edited by Neil G on Wed Apr 14, 2010 5:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Heinrich
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Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 3:41 pm

Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby Heinrich » Wed Apr 14, 2010 2:42 pm

To answer your questions:

1) ALWAYS clip in a biner to a nut wire. Then clip the sling into the biner. Alternatively, use a quikdraw (which in effect is two biners with a short sling.) Threading the sling directly through the nut's wire is no doubt a really dangerous thing to do as cables cut through slings easily.

2) Rock Empire and Metolius cams have a plastic protective layer around the cable loop through which the sling is threaded. Thus it is safe to assume that you can also sling the cam directly through this loop. My advice would still be to use a caribiner when extension slings are used. Also: making a knot in a sling lowers the impact force the sling can handle significantly (from 22kn to about 600n). Rather than tieing two slings together, use a biner.

hope this answers your questions

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Hann
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Re: Starting A Trad Rack

Postby Hann » Wed Apr 14, 2010 3:03 pm

Concerning the Larks foot.

Not standard practice, but to labor the point:

A larks foot works well when connecting 2 slings of similar width.

But,
Even when connecting a thin sling to a broad sling a Larks Foot can be dangerous:
The smaller sling has a tendency to cut through the broader sling when shock loaded.

I'm assuming this goes for a nut with a plastic cover over the wire, as well as with cams such as the new BD's with the loop.

This is the reason that cams have sewn slings attached (or you can use a tapeknot when replacing)

In essence:
The use of a Larks Foot, however convenient, holds danger.
It is the function of the knot that causes one sling, or cable, to cut through the wider sling.

If, in desperation, you need to attach a sling directly to a nut, cam, piton or sling of different width do the following:
I use a nut as example:
1) Feed the sling through the eyeloop cable (usual attachment place)
2) Do not bring the one end of the sling through the other end of the sling (creating a Larks Foot)
3) Keep feeding the sling until both ends are equally through the nut eyeloop.
4) Attach 1 x 'biner to both ends simultaneously.

In this way you are effectively doubling the strength of the sling and avoiding the Larksfoot.

I hope this is understandable

This is the best pic I could find:

http://web3.bdel.com/scene/beta/images/cam_sling_1.jpg

The nut will be in the place of the green sling.


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