Ideas for using extra ascenders?

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Ideas for using extra ascenders?

Postby GroundquestMSA » Dec 16, 2013 9:23 pm

The recent posts about frogwalker and other systems have me thinking about experimenting with my extra ascenders. As things go, I've rapidly gone from 0 to 3 crolls. I wonder if I can use any combination of these and my two handled ascenders to build an alternative to my frog system. This is simply for fun, I have no practical use for another system, so I don't want to buy any expensive additional gear (like a chest roller). I've used a texas in the past and see no advantages to that. I've been wondering if I can build a harness for one of the crolls and use it like a pantin. I hear that this has been done, does anyone have a good pattern for such a project?
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Re: Ideas for using extra ascenders?

Postby NZcaver » Dec 17, 2013 5:06 am

GroundquestMSA wrote:I've been wondering if I can build a harness for one of the crolls and use it like a pantin. I hear that this has been done, does anyone have a good pattern for such a project?

See http://www.cavediggers.com/vertical/7ASCENT.pdf

Scroll down to page 5 and check out the handled ascender lashed to the ankle. I made one of these 20 years ago and used it sporadically for a while. A Pantin-like strap arrangement might work better with your Croll, but of course you won't be able to kick out of it unless you remove the Croll's cam safety latch.
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Re: Ideas for using extra ascenders?

Postby GroundquestMSA » Dec 17, 2013 5:55 pm

I just tried strapping a croll to my foot and climbing with my normal frog setup and a walking motion. I can see how his method is a success, but without a chest roller, climbing much farther than the 30' my tree allows would probably get pretty tiring. I found that it helps a lot to raise the upper ascender about 1' higher than I normally have it set for frogging. That makes it a pain if you want to switch to frog though. A quick solution was to girth hitch the loop around my foot instead of readjusting the buckle.

Next, I tried a sort of modified Jumar method. Remember the arborist who posted about his climbing system some time back? He attached a long handle to one ascender so he could get a full step. I tried this only I left my croll attached so that I could frog if desired. It worked pretty well, though the croll didn't feed very well initially. Again, it helped to have both ascenders up fairly high.
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Re: Ideas for using extra ascenders?

Postby NZcaver » Dec 17, 2013 6:53 pm

Sounds like you should try making your own lightweight compact chest roller, or find an old Simmon single roller.
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Re: Ideas for using extra ascenders?

Postby mostlytree » Jan 13, 2014 7:26 pm

I pm'd you. the ascender I use for the haas is a croll style the old crolls work, the new ones do not, which is why I use CT. the haas will give you a full step with non of that extra stuff, and you don't need sticks to push things around.
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Re: Ideas for using extra ascenders?

Postby Chris V » Jan 19, 2014 7:00 pm

I use a pretty basic frog system, but have found that an extra hand ascender on a safety line the same length as the long side of my cows tail is extremely useful getting past lips at the top of pits. You can frog up as high as possible leaving just enough rope to allow you to remove your main hand ascender, then clip the extra ascender in above the lip so you can remove the first hand ascender instead of having to try to shove it past the lip, which can be a real pain, especially when you're worn out from a long climb.

One could argue that a cave should always be rigged so that there were no sharp breaks at the top of pits, but this is not always practical, like at Devil's Sinkhole in Texas, where the surrounding terrain is flat as a pancake & the lip is only about 2 feet thick.
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Re: Ideas for using extra ascenders?

Postby GroundquestMSA » Dec 19, 2014 8:42 pm

When I tried using a croll for a foot ascender last year, the main problem was that there was no way to keep the ascender from rotating around the foot when loaded. I solved that problem very simply this evening. This is the croll simply lashed to my right boot with a square knot.
Image
With the angles involved, the rope fed much easier when the right foot. The success of the mission was thanks to the multidirectional nature of the croll's attachment point, which allowed me to do this:
Image
The carabiner lay very nicely on the bottom of the foot, allowed me to comfortably tighten the lashing, and eliminated the rotation problems. Obviously, this won't work as well as a commercially produced foot ascender, but it is at least mildly interesting. I climbed the tree with it several times in a frog walker style, and it worked quite well once I learned the ideal dorsiflexion. Still need a tiny chest roller though.
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