Petzl Ascension/Frog system question

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Petzl Ascension/Frog system question

Postby Scott McCrea » Oct 25, 2005 2:13 pm

The following thread was rescued from the cache of the NSS Discussion Board, version 1.0 at Archive.org. For more info on Rescued Threads, go here.


A Petzl Ascension/Frog system question for the vertically knowledgeable

Posted by: JD Martin on November 01, 2000 at 13:13:40:

I have normally seen folks attach both their foot loop and their safety (i.e., a dynamic line running from the ascender to the screw link on one's seat harness) to a small screw link hanging from the lower of the two eyes at the bottom of a Petzl ascender. Is it possible/advisible to run the foot loop from a screw link on the lower of the two eyes, and the safety from the upper (or vice versa)? And what, if any, are the dangers/advantages of substituting a locking carabiner (locked, of course) in place of a screw link at the ascender?

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Posted by: Yvonne Droms on November 01, 2000 at 17:59:08:

Is it possible/advisible to run the foot loop from a screw link on the lower of the two eyes, and the safety from the upper (or vice versa)?


It don't think it matters at all. Some handled ascenders like the Jumar have only one hole, and then you have no choice.

And what, if any, are the dangers/advantages of substituting a locking carabiner (locked, of course) in place of a screw link at the ascender?


Again, it doesn't matter. Screw links are used because they are small (they must be life-supporting, though), and therefore take up less space and weigh less. If you use your upper ascender for other uses, then a carabiner makes it easier to remove the ascender when you need it for something else. One difference is that the screw link is shorter than the biner, and so it will make a difference in the total length of your attachment: you may need to adjust the length of your loops or cords, so you are most efficient, and so that your cow's tail can still reach above your upper ascender.

-Yvonne

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Posted by: Martha Hendrix on November 01, 2000 at 17:53:55:

I have normally seen folks attach both their foot loop and their safety (i.e., a dynamic line running from the ascender to the screw link on one's seat harness) to a small screw link hanging from the lower of the two eyes at the bottom of a Petzl ascender. Is it possible/advisible to run the foot loop from a screw link on the lower of the two eyes, and the safety from the upper (or vice versa)? And what, if any, are the dangers/advantages of substituting a locking carabiner (locked, of course) in place of a screw link at the ascender?


Not sure how small you mean when you say small screw link but if I was going to use a link for my "dynamic line" I definitely want a "big" one.

I personally have my ascender tied in directly to the "dynamic line" to my saddle. I used to attach it with a locking caribiner but it was more bulk.

I have always attached my foot loops with a screw link separately, but this is not the only way to do it.

If you are a grotto member I'd talk to the people who do the vertical training sessions for your grotto. Also, check the NSS Bookstore (to the left of the page) They have some good books on the subject. If you are an NSS member please note the NSS also has a vertical section - you may be able to contact them from the page on NSS Organizations, or contact the NSS main office to get contact information.

I hesitate to discuss technique too much here as it is too easy to misunderstand. I'm by no means an expert but have assisted with grotto vertical training sessions and have almost 7 years of vertical experience. I have caved with a number of different people and seen many forms of climbing systems (some pretty scary) in use. If you'd like to discuss technique please feel free to reply to me (I have included my e-mail so you should be able to click on it at the top of the scree here).
Last edited by Scott McCrea on Oct 25, 2005 3:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby NZcaver » Oct 25, 2005 3:37 pm

Scott - you keeping busy starting all these new threads? :wink:

Have you seen "Forum Posting Etiquette" that Phil posted in Open Talk?
http://albinoblacksheep.com/flash/posting.php :rofl:


Anyway, I'm taking the bait. :grin:

My current Frog setup uses a Petzl Ascension (right hand). My long cowstail is clipped into the larger hole at the bottom using a Camp wire-gate carabiner. This is the only wire-gate I have, and I chose to use it because it's the smallest/most compact fully-rated (22kN) carabiner I've ever seen. The 5.5mm spectra cord that goes to my footloops is tied to a small stainless oval Maillon Rapide, using a Clove hitch with a Barrel knot backup. (The maillon safe working load - not breaking strength - is 3.6kN/800lbs.) The footloop maillon then shares the same ascender attachment hole as the cowstail carabiner.

Regarding JD Martin's original questions - I don't think it would be bad to move the footloop into the small hole. I believe that's what the hole was originally designed for. I don't rig it this way because my little Maillon won't fit. I also don't believe there's any danger in substituting a locking carabiner in place of a Maillon. Being less compact, a carabiner will probably rattle around more and perhaps get in the way as you ascend - but I know plenty of cavers who are quite happy with this setup.

The current French teaching (after all, they invented the Frog) is to use a locking carabiner to attach your footloop cord to the ascender, and a non-locking carabiner to attach your cowstail to the footloop carabiner. (Of course, you can choose to make both carabiners locking ones if you prefer.) This is a slightly bulkier arrangement than what I have, but it does allow you to do a footloop-to-Croll pick-off reasonably quickly - if you ever need to (and that's a whole different subject). My system requires the extra effort of moving my footloop Maillon, but it still works.

OK, that's my 2 cents spent... :grab:
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Postby Dwight Livingston » Oct 25, 2005 3:48 pm

My footloop is tied to a light maillon attached to a Basic ascender. My long cowstail is clipped to the Basic ascender as well with a 'biner, next to the maillon. The maillon is too light to use as a safety. Originally I tied the footloop directly to the Basic, but the line showed signs of wear too soon, I suspect because the 'biner was rubbing it.

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Postby Scott McCrea » Oct 25, 2005 3:53 pm

NZcaver wrote:Scott - you keeping busy starting all these new threads? :wink:

Have you seen "Forum Posting Etiquette" that Phil posted in Open Talk?
http://albinoblacksheep.com/flash/posting.php :rofl:


D'oh! :doh: Somehow, part of this thread got cut off when I posted it. I think I fixed it.

Yes, I do have too much time on my hands today. :twisted:
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Postby Dangerjudy » Oct 25, 2005 7:31 pm

I"ve got a little screwlink connecting my footloops to my handled ascender, and the darn screwlink gate will screw open... I have to keep an eye on it. Perhaps it's haunted.
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Postby hank moon » Oct 25, 2005 8:50 pm

Dangerjudy wrote:I"ve got a little screwlink connecting my footloops to my handled ascender, and the darn screwlink gate will screw open... I have to keep an eye on it. Perhaps it's haunted.


AhhhooooOOOooOooOOoOOooOOOOo the haunted screwlink! C'est creepy! Have you tried tying your loopos straight into the jug? Or, if you can handle the haunt, tightening the thang with a wrench?

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Postby NZcaver » Oct 25, 2005 9:12 pm

Dangerjudy - is the screw gate of your Maillon Rapide facing to the rear of the ascender (away from where the rope could rub against it)? And is it oriented so you screw it downwards to close it? If you haven't already set it up this way, try giving it a shot. Also I don't recommend cranking it tight with a wrench/leatherman etc. I've found a couple of wraps of plumbers Teflon thread-sealing tape can sometimes help - and can still be undone by fingers (strong, clean fingers).
Hope this helps. :grin:


Hank - why the heck would you attach your footloop to a "jug"? For extra leverage when pouring water? :roll: Only climbers make up their own words for gear they don't know how to use properly... :boxing:... and we're cavers on this discussion board... :wink:
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Postby ian mckenzie » Oct 25, 2005 9:30 pm

A 'jug' is a common caving expression for jughandle, a natural anchor or, in this case, the anchor hole in your ascender. I rig my footloops as Hank suggests, with a hitch straight thru the hole. Why use a screw-link if you don't want it to open?
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Postby Scott McCrea » Oct 25, 2005 9:39 pm

ian mckenzie wrote:Why use a screw-link if you don't want it to open?
:exactly: Fewer 'links' in the chain means less to worry about, carry around, maintain and buy. KISS.
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Postby NZcaver » Oct 25, 2005 10:37 pm

For many years, I had both my footloops and my cowstail tied directly into my ascender (...not my "jug":wink:)

As you say, Scott, less links in the chain. I only added the Maillon and carabiner because I was finally persuaded that linking (rather than tying in) the footloop cord and cowstail gives you more options - particularly with pick-offs.

And I'll probably change my mind (and my setup) again...and again... 8)
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Postby ian mckenzie » Oct 26, 2005 1:00 pm

I partially agree with NZcaver; altho I tie my footloops directly into my ascender, I use an oval biner for my safety leash so it can be detached from the ascender if necessary (to untangle it, or to use it as a third cowstail). A good argument for a biner, but not for a maillon IMO.
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Postby Tim White » Oct 26, 2005 2:20 pm

ian mckenzie wrote:I tie my footloops directly into my ascender, I use an oval biner for my safety leash so it can be detached from the ascender if necessary (to untangle it, or to use it as a third cowstail). A good argument for a biner, but not for a maillon IMO.


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Postby NZcaver » Oct 26, 2005 2:29 pm

If anyone knows of a source for locking accessory carabiners, with a long axis measurement of about 50mm/2 inches and a SWL of a few kN - please let me know! :pray:

I would love to replace my little footloop Maillon with one... :wink:
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Postby Dangerjudy » Oct 27, 2005 8:15 am

[quote="NZcaver"]Dangerjudy - is the screw gate of your Maillon Rapide facing to the rear of the ascender (away from where the rope could rub against it)? And is it oriented so you screw it downwards to close it? If you haven't already set it up this way, try giving it a shot. Also I don't recommend cranking it tight with a wrench/leatherman etc. I've found a couple of wraps of plumbers Teflon thread-sealing tape can sometimes help - and can still be undone by fingers (strong, clean fingers).
Hope this helps. :grin:

Thanks NZCaver! I will check it out this morning and adjust it as you describe. :grin:
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