Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby Marduke » Jun 12, 2011 7:27 pm

I have often seen, and generally recommend putting a small screwlink between the croll and half round under the premise that one should always be capable of removing a jammed ascender from the rope without having to remove/compromise the integrity of your seat harness. If you jam the croll (personally seen it happen twice in a little over a year) and don't have this link, you have no way to remove it from the rope without opening your half round on rope.

It's the same reason you would never put a QAS or cowstail directly on your harness without using a biner.

Because of the twist of the croll, proper orientation is maintained. The small hit in efficiency is well worth the extra safety IMO.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby rlboyce » Jun 12, 2011 8:22 pm

Interesting point.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby NZcaver » Jun 12, 2011 8:26 pm

Marduke wrote:I have often seen, and generally recommend putting a small screwlink between the croll and half round under the premise that one should always be capable of removing a jammed ascender from the rope without having to remove/compromise the integrity of your seat harness. If you jam the croll (personally seen it happen twice in a little over a year) and don't have this link, you have no way to remove it from the rope without opening your half round on rope.

:question: This is news to me. But after 20-something years of frogging, I still see personal variations that are new to me. To each his (or her) own. Out of curiosity, do you know of any publications which recommend this method?

Personally if I jam my Croll I clear it the normal way, with it still attached to me. I might throw another ascender or Prusik on the rope for an extra attachment point if I'm feeling the need. Or tie a quick bight and clip in with my cowstail.

It's the same reason you would never put a QAS or cowstail directly on your harness without using a biner.

Hmmm, another interesting comment. I don't use a "QAS" but I would not normally recommend connecting a cowstail to the harness with a carabiner. I'm thinking of falls and potential loading directly onto the gate. If I was wearing a climber-type seat harness I suppose I could use a locking carabiner with a "keeper" there, or maybe a small screw link. Personally my cowstail and Croll are always connected directly to my half-round at the front of the harness, but my micro rack is connected via an oval screw link. All with good reason.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby PeterFJohnson » Jun 12, 2011 8:30 pm

Marduke wrote:If you jam the croll (personally seen it happen twice in a little over a year) and don't have this link, you have no way to remove it from the rope without opening your half round on rope.


I have had my croll jammed once before on rope. I was using borrowed gear: Croll as the chest ascender, handled ascender as the upper ascender. The footloop on the setup was connected to the upper ascender using a Camp Nano(before someone gets all huffy the cowstail was still attached using a locking biner as is standard). The idea behind this was to facilitate easy removal of the footloop. While on rope I stepped up and the croll made contact with the Nano opening the biner gate. The gate side of the biner then slid into the channel on the croll along with the rope and promptly pinned itself there. This wasn't a good situation because I now had both ascenders jammed in place - croll jammed on rope, upper ascender now stuck on the croll - and was essentially stranded. A good deal of fiddling around finally got the Nano out of the croll but it took a bit of work.

I don't think a full sized biner could get stuck in this fashion and besides I put my footloop straight in the locking biner. So I am not about to switch over. That being said, figured I would mention it as food for thought.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby Stridergdm » Jun 12, 2011 10:57 pm

Marduke wrote:It's the same reason you would never put a QAS or cowstail directly on your harness without using a biner.

My first thought when reading this (which I believe was similar to NZCaver's was) "You wouldn't?"

Honestly, I can't recall ever seeing a frog setup the way you're describing.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby mgmills » Jun 13, 2011 8:04 am

Stridergdm wrote:
Marduke wrote:It's the same reason you would never put a QAS or cowstail directly on your harness without using a biner.

My first thought when reading this (which I believe was similar to NZCaver's was) "You wouldn't?"

Honestly, I can't recall ever seeing a frog setup the way you're describing.


I was taught to connect my croll and cowstail directly to my harness d ring. I even know some people who connect their rack directly although personally I use a link to connect my rack because I like to be able to remove it to move more efficiently through the cave. I was also taught to connect my chest harness directly to the croll.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby Ch33s3n1p » Jun 13, 2011 8:20 am

mgmills wrote:I was taught to connect my croll and cowstail directly to my harness d ring. I even know some people who connect their rack directly although personally I use a link to connect my rack because I like to be able to remove it to move more efficiently through the cave. I was also taught to connect my chest harness directly to the croll.


Definitely more efficient than using extra links/biners. I can think of a half dozen ways to unweight a jammed croll without having to use an extra screw link.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby Stridergdm » Jun 13, 2011 9:17 am

mgmills wrote:
Stridergdm wrote:
Marduke wrote:It's the same reason you would never put a QAS or cowstail directly on your harness without using a biner.

My first thought when reading this (which I believe was similar to NZCaver's was) "You wouldn't?"

Honestly, I can't recall ever seeing a frog setup the way you're describing.


I was taught to connect my croll and cowstail directly to my harness d ring. I even know some people who connect their rack directly although personally I use a link to connect my rack because I like to be able to remove it to move more efficiently through the cave. I was also taught to connect my chest harness directly to the croll.


Now you know another person who connects their rack directly to their d-ring. Most of my vertical is pit-bouncing so I don't worry as much above moving through the cave. That said, the main advantage is it gives me even more room for a change-over and I actually prefer the orientation to the rope.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby Crockett » Jun 13, 2011 1:55 pm

Ch33s3n1p wrote:
NZcaver wrote:
Ch33s3n1p wrote:I'll try just running the neck strap directly through the top hole of the croll... the only reason I didn't do that to begin with was to avoid nylon on nylon contact.

If the chest harness webbing is threaded directly though the Croll, I don't see how that would be nylon-on-nylon contact. You should be fine.



Sounds good, I'll try it next time. I have tons of extra webbing, I'll try sewing a basic chest harness to keep the weight off my neck.


You don't have to use nylon webbing. You could use a chewing gum wrapper chain or a leather belt or some other odd material if you want. I have used a boot string but the pressure was still on my neck.

I have an extra lighweight frog chest harness that gets tossed around in the bin. PM me with your address and I'll mail it to you.

It looks like this so it is probably a PMI:

http://shop.pmirope.com/personal-gear/i ... terID=1612
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby chh » Jun 20, 2011 8:59 am

I also try to keep the connections on my harness to a minimum, though I do keep my desceder on a link and my footloop on a link. My croll and cowstail are directly on my harness. My chest ascender is also attached directly to my croll. The ability to disconnect them is interesting but I've more often seen folks get tangled up in their systems trying to do something like a changeover when they have too much junk on their harness. Can't say I've ever seen an ascender get stuck to the point that it couldn't be freed by taking weight off it.

Tying in short to a rope makes good sense in certain scenarios, but caving really isn't one of them. Also, screamers come in a variety of sizes. They are meant to mitigate a certain number of kilonewtons when they are deployed. Most that are small enough to use linked to a cowstail will only handle a few kn's. So while they might help lessen the kidney bursting pain of falling on a leash, they wouldn't get rid of it entirely. They are meant to be used in conjunction with a dynamic system not AS the dynamic system. There are lanyards that they make for via ferrata and such that are meant to absorb more force than your average screamer I believe, but I have no experience with those and I'm not sure what kind of force they are capable of absorbing.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby self-deleted_user » Jun 20, 2011 9:13 am

The only way I've managed to keep pressure off my neck with a chest harness frogging was either the the GGG style (H-type) harness and Pup's Pal.

Per Marduke's advice I don't attach the croll directly to my halfround anymore, just used a short oval mallion (I think I'm naming that right, still working on names of things) and it looses me about 3cm. The thing i actually find more annoying is it "twists" around on it so sometimes it jams the side of the croll into my stomach instead of having it flat. Not That Comfortable because that's actually how it likes to be then. When it was directly attached, it always stayed on the side of the slot that kept it flat against my tummy. That might be the thing that makes me take it off and put it back directly onto the croll. I mean, I had a bruise where it kept hitting me after Fountain Pit the other weekend. And that's only 100ft.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby Extremeophile » Jun 20, 2011 11:01 am

Sungura wrote:Per Marduke's advice I don't attach the croll directly to my halfround anymore, just used a short oval mallion (I think I'm naming that right, still working on names of things) and it looses me about 3cm. The thing i actually find more annoying is it "twists" around on it so sometimes it jams the side of the croll into my stomach instead of having it flat. Not That Comfortable because that's actually how it likes to be then. When it was directly attached, it always stayed on the side of the slot that kept it flat against my tummy. That might be the thing that makes me take it off and put it back directly onto the croll. I mean, I had a bruise where it kept hitting me after Fountain Pit the other weekend. And that's only 100ft.

These seem like predictable problems from using a link to connect the D-maillion to the Croll. I'm not sure I understand the approach of buying a harness with a very low connection and then adding a link that extends that connection. You're giving back a lot of the efficiency you gained with that style harness. Also, every link you add to the chain rotates things by roughly 90 degrees. A Croll that is designed to connect directly to the D-maillion and lie flat on your abdomen is now rotated 90 degrees. I've seen people use a Basic, or handled ascender, in place of a Croll, and in this case adding a link helps it lie flat. If people feel they need to have some alternate way of disconnecting from ascenders while not opening the D-maillion, the Basic with a link might actually work better than a Croll. Personally I'll stick with directly attaching my Croll to my D-maillion and focus on keeping things other than the rope from feeding into the Croll cam.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby John Lovaas » Jun 20, 2011 11:40 am

Sungura wrote:The thing i actually find more annoying is it "twists" around on it so sometimes it jams the side of the croll into my stomach instead of having it flat. Not That Comfortable because that's actually how it likes to be then. When it was directly attached, it always stayed on the side of the slot that kept it flat against my tummy.


Yup- when it is directly attached, the Croll is being used as it was designed and intended; the twist in the lower attachment point allows it to lay flat against the body.

As this thread has continued, I was wondering- if something jams a Croll, shouldn't a caver be able to unweight it by standing up in their footloop, then wrestle and swear and tug and pull on the Croll until it gives? And if your footloop webbing got sucked into the Croll(more on this later), you could clip a third ascender onto the rope and do the same? It seems like the energy expenditure would be similar to a changeover or rebelay.

If the Croll were attached to the harness D-ring with a maillon or carabiner, wouldn't you have to unweight the Croll in order to remove the maillon from the harness D-ring anyway?

And shouldn't a root cause be addressed? Your top connector to your Croll shouldn't be long enough and/or large enough to get sucked into the Croll, and there shouldn't be anything loose in the vicinity of the Croll gate that is thin/small enough to fit into the Croll gate at any point when it is moving along rope.

I used to use webbing for my footloop, and had 2 occasions(in 15 years) where the footloop webbing, under tension, found its way into the Croll gate; in both cases, I had just reached the top of my 'stand up' power stroke. So- I went to a cord footloop. If it can't fit into the Croll gate, it is highly likely that it will never jam the gate.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby self-deleted_user » Jun 20, 2011 12:20 pm

Pulled out my stuff to look at it some and yeah...i don't see how you'd get the link off without unweighting it anyway....which is how you'd just unjam a croll normally, right? Also noticed the shortness of the link means that it's hard to turn the croll around the bend to get it out through the opening (if it's on rope) but yet the opening isn't big enough for the diameter of the halfround so the only way to pop the croll off would be that it has to slide through the link opening. Which def seems impossible with it weighted...so how is it better I'm getting confused now. Especially 'cause I'm not a fan of the bruising it caused, yeah there is the longer opening on the bottom of the croll so it can sit flat either way it's connected, but it certainly doesn't want to stay flat when not directly attached. It was a lot more uncomfortable climbing for sure, which bothered me a heck of a lot more than efficiency loss of making it higher.
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Re: Had a problem with my frogging system, any ideas?

Postby Marduke » Jun 20, 2011 1:09 pm

You jam your croll up against a knot (that's joining two ropes for example) for example, how do you get if off rope without untying the knot? There is no way to get the croll's teeth unengaged to unjam it since you can't move it up rope to disengage.


Amy, you might have your croll connected backwards to the maillon.
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