Really well, I use a chafe sleeve on it, and get a year plus out of a lanyard, daily use.
Don't forget the shizl rope slider Jeff!
Don't forget the shizl rope slider Jeff!
Thanks for this comment, Steve. The idea that it might just be the size of the rope alone that could help solve the issue had never occurred to me.I used 8mm and 10mm cordage but never had a win win. On 1/2" rope it was easy but I think when you get down to the 11 or so mm ropes, they're way more finikey
Moss, or AJ, or Andrew, correct? Thanks so much for starting this thread, I greatly appreciate it. I just wish it could be "stickied", as I'm afraid it will be rapidly buried. I'm just glad I've been lurking on the Buzz a bit more intently for the last few days, and managed to see this thread going by.A few people mentioned in Reg's awesome Rope Wrench tribute thread that they were having issues with the hitch binding on descent. This thread is for brainstorming on that problem.
No one person's setup is "the only way" but let's hear what hitch/cord/configuration is working flawlessly for you.
It's worth noting that any hitch in any setup will progressively tighten for any period of time when a climber's weight is 100% on the system. Before a long descent it is helpful to redress the coils slightly looser.
Hitch cord maintenance is essential to keep it performing consistently over its life. A few years ago Todd Bremer showed me an excellent procedure to remove caked/burned polyester from the hitch cord's cover. Place the cord horizontal against the trunk of a tree with firm and moderate texture bark (think red oak/pin oak/black oak, etc.). Roll the cord up and down with both hands flat against the trunk. Move the cord from one side to the other as you roll it. Repeat until the cord is completely supple and shows very little to no burn/melted buildup. If the cord is in really bad shape it will take a bit more effort to clean it up.
This is exactly what I meant by my post in the other thread.I believe the original posters in Reg's thread were talking about straight down descent. For bombing a swing hitch functionality (no binding) is even more critical, needs to be just right. Walking down a trunk takes some percentage weight off the hitch depending on lean and other variables and is less a problem for the hitch. So overall I think we're talking about 100% climber weight (or greater in a dynamic swing situation) on the rope, no leg support from the tree.
Oceans, (Master), thanks so much for this post. The next time I get a chance to climb, I'll try to remember to try this technique, and see if it helps to solve the problem. I generally climb DSRT, so my second hand is tied up on my second system, and not available for use as a "brake" hand.If the hitch is being operated by pressing down on the top coil alone, that essentially pushes slack further down into the hitch, making it bind tighter at the top.
Two of the best things a climber can do to prevent hitch bind-up is to;
1)Use a brake hand below the hip to modulate friction, and/or...
2)Grab the hitch by as many coils your mitt can muster, given the amount of heat you're willing to feel, etc.
This is why I appreciate the Michoacan when it's tied well. Lots of nicely wrapped coils to hold, and when you use one or both technique, the tension stays far more even throughout the coils due to your hand sort of holding everything in place.
Try it. Observe, Grasshopper. IT WORKS!
Hmmm.... For the purposes of discussing hitch binding, best to be binary about it (look at one system at a time). When releasing the hitch with 100% of your weight on a single line you'll always want your braking hand in play. For more advanced climber scenarios like dynamic swings it's going to be one-handed, no brake hand. Brake hand is definitely balancing load and taking some percentage pressure off the hitch and as Oceans mentioned lets the hitch run smoother.... I generally climb DSRT, so my second hand is tied up on my second system, and not available for use as a "brake" hand.
When releasing the hitch with 100% of your weight on a single line you'll always want your braking hand in play.
Thanks for this tip, moss! When a climber like you tells me "always", I get that you are telling me something critically important. Taking the brake hand to the limit, I guess the idea would be to let the brake hand take all of your weight, while at the same time attempting to loosen up the wraps on the hitch cord to allow one to bomb out of a tree with a hitch that allows one to drop freely, but in a controlled fashion.Brake hand is definitely balancing load and taking some percentage pressure off the hitch and as Oceans mentioned lets the hitch run smoother.
Thanks for this post, moss. First time I've heard about the "rock climber's rest position"; thanks for the detailed description, and the mention of the use of the strong-arm side to accomplish it. Much appreciated.Tim, if you want to redress your hitch while on rope and can't get your feet on the tree, simply stand up on your rope with a footlock or foot ascender and take your weight off the hitch. Use your strongest arm in addition to your foot power to "hang" on the rope (the rock climber's rest position) and redress the hitch (loosen the coils) with your free hand.
WaitakKauri, thanks so much for this post! I appreciate you going to the trouble of finding that document. I've got it saved on my handheld computer now. Now I just have to remember it's there when the time comes.There's a doc here on the buzz that show the michoacan
I find the xt works best for me for non binding while still catching reliably. Weight 185'/80kg plus gear on Yale 11mm explore/safari using 10mm beeline or ocean with 4 wraps, x braid plus 1 (any more and it's too long). Only a few climbs on the ocean, but loving it.
I just thought I'd bump this thread, adding a big "Thank you." to Reg for sharing his setup with us.I use 6 wraps on a VT.....which might be a little tight for some when advancing or slack tending....but at least the configuration is always correct and decents are very smooth and predictable.
Couple years now I've used samson velocity climb line. 10mm ocean works great as a hitch cord, when it's new and supple....but it doesn't stay new for long. Tennex was probably the best for me, but I don't think you can buy it for that purpose anymore.....perhaps because of its low heat resistance. I weigh about 155.....not sure if that makes a difference.
Not definite yet, but there's a good chance we have a 200+ft Doug fir to cut out the big deadwood sometime in the next month....so I'm more than happy to take up the gopro and show you how well it works.I just thought I'd bump this thread, adding a big "Thank you." to Reg for sharing his setup with us.
The thing that stands out about this post to me, after re-reading through this thread a second time, is that Reg says about his setup that "descents are very smooth and predictable." Now to me, that is really saying something, because it seems like every time I watch one of Reg's videos, the tree he's in seems to be about 140 feet tall, or so.
So if Reg is able to descend almost twice as far as I normally have to, and his hitch does not bind up on him, but rather acts "smooth and predictable" for all of 140 feet, it means that he is definitely doing something (or a lot of things) right. I just thought I'd point this detail out. I will have to try this combo out, sometime.
Thanks for taking the time to post your setup in such detail, Reg.
Hey, ClimbHy! Thanks for taking the time to respond to this thread. I don't have a current photo of my Rope Wrench setup. I'd say at this point, I'm pretty sure it is operator factor and not my hitch cord/rope combination that is the issue. I use my Rope Wrench on a Mammut rope that I think is 10.5mm in diameter, if I recall correctly. My hitch cord is most likely to be 10mm Beeline, but I also use 9.5 mm Epicord sometimes, I'd say. I use the Knut hitch.Tim, if you don't mind me asking; Specifically what rope/ hitch cord and configuration are you having issue with? Do you have a picture of your set up? One thing that you may already do and has maybe been mentioned before is just before releasing your hitch take some weight off with your belay hand. It may only amount to 30-40 lbs off the system but makes for a more controlled release.
Oceans, thanks for this. I truly am the grasshopper, and you are my Master Poe.With the Rope Wrench engaged, the brake hand can keep the climber from descending at all, even with the hitch completely collapsed. True control comes from learning the balance of pressure between brake and hitch hand.
Wow, Reg, a 200 footer! Just amazing! I don't think I've ever even seen a tree close to that height, as of yet. Kind of tough for me to wrap my mind around it, really.Not definite yet, but there's a good chance we have a 200+ft Doug fir to cut out the big deadwood sometime in the next month....so I'm more than happy to take up the gopro and show you how well it works.