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By TheBirdman
From Eldorado Springs, Colorado
Mar 23, 2010
So, I'm just learning to trad climb and all the trad climbs I have done thus far have bolted anchors. I put lockers in the two bolts, run cordalette through them, do the "X" or "twist" to make the anchor redundant, and then put a locker in the master point. I then take the eyehole of the ATC-guide and clip it to the master point. I generally anchor myself using a sling looped through my tie in loops attached to a locker which I clip directly to the bolts.

I have two questions...

First, in all other cases except when I am using an ATC-guide, I have two lockers opposing in the master point. Is one locker still safe if using the ATC-guide?

Second, if there were no bolts, where would the appropriately place for the climber to anchor to. The anchor's masterpoint is the ATC-Guide and it doesn't seem right to anchor myself to the masterpoint which is also the belay. Also, I wouldn't anchor myself directly to one piece. So short of building a second anchor which isn't always feasible, what is the best way to attach the climber to an anchor being used to belay a second with an ATC guide?

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By Chris Plesko
From Westminster, CO
Mar 23, 2010
OMG, I winz!!!
You need an anchor book (john long's 2nd edition is good) and a mentor to show you some things.

In very short:
Build a bomber anchor. Clove hitch the rope coming from your harness to the master point. Belay from the ATC guide off the same masterpoint (separate biner).

EDIT: One locker is safe at the masterpoint when someone is standing there belaying. If you are top roping and the anchor is unattended as people run laps, having multiple biners there is a good idea as is each person checking the anchor quickly each lap.

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By Sam Stephens
Mar 23, 2010
Top half of Melifluous
In short, instead of doing the "X", tie an eight on a bight. Clip yourself into the "top shelf" of the anchor (through multiple strands in case one side fails) and clip your guide to the bight on the eight.

Get yourself Craig Leubbens anchor book.

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By saxfiend
Administrator
From Decatur, GA
Mar 23, 2010
Relaxing at the P1 belay of Fruit Loops at Rumblin...
1. One locker is safe for attaching the ATC Guide to the master point in guide mode. When you've got the rope going directly into the master point, two biners are good for redundancy (though I usually use only one locker in that scenario), but I see not reason for two biners using the Guide.

2. When I build a gear anchor, I attach myself to individual pieces in the anchor rather than the master point; that way, the master point is used only for the ATC Guide bringing up the second. Since I climb on doubles a lot of the time, I'll clove hitch one rope to one piece and the other rope to another piece. If I'm using a single rope, I'll clove it to one piece and clip in with my Chain Reactor (similar to Metolius PAS) to another piece. If I have any concerns about anchor load, I might place a separate piece of gear and use it for one of my personal anchor points.

These are my personal preferences, I know other leaders do things differently (e.g., belay directly off the harness, redirected through the master point). Also, I make sure to keep slack out of the rope going to the second to avoid unnecessary shock loading of the anchor if he/she falls.

JL

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By TheBirdman
From Eldorado Springs, Colorado
Mar 23, 2010
Chris: Wouldn't clovehitching to the masterpoint be stressing the locker in three ways? I mean, considering I'm just standing on a ledge, it's unlikely I will shock the anchor, but still, I was always taught you only want to pull biners in two directions.

Sam: I have tied an eight on a bite, but is clipping in to the cordalette above the masterpoint safe. Again, I doubt I'm shocking the anchor falling off a belay ledge, but even still, is just clipping into the strands of the cordalette above the masterpoint legit?

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By Evan1984
Mar 23, 2010
Zach Friedman wrote:
Chris: Wouldn't clovehitching to the masterpoint be stressing the locker in three ways? I mean, considering I'm just standing on a ledge, it's unlikely I will shock the anchor, but still, I was always taught you only want to pull biners in two directions. Sam: I have tied an eight on a bite, but is clipping in to the cordalette above the masterpoint safe. Again, I doubt I'm shocking the anchor falling off a belay ledge, but even still, is just clipping into the strands of the cordalette above the masterpoint legit?


If you clip into the masterpoint, do so on a seperate locker than the guide. Otherwise, the whole thing will turn into a cluster when you are tangled in both ropes and trying to manage your lap coil. Also, if you are in on the same locker, you can't escape without opening the gate of the locker that you are belaying from.

On bolted routes, clipping in to the bolts can be nice because you can offset yourself from the masterpoint but it becomes an ordeal when you have three pieces. I still clip into the top shelf, regardless of the anchor. Yes, its safe to do if you do it right and you built the anchor correctly.


Get Craig Luebben's matering the basics or anchor book. It will make all of this clearer.

Evan

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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Mar 23, 2010
Bocan
Zach Friedman wrote:
Chris: Sam: I have tied an eight on a bite, but is clipping in to the cordalette above the masterpoint safe. Again, I doubt I'm shocking the anchor falling off a belay ledge, but even still, is just clipping into the strands of the cordalette above the masterpoint legit?


Yep, it's called the "shelf" and just make sure that you are going through several of the strands. Typically I always clip into the shelf and leave the masterpoint either for the ATC or for my second. If chains are available I'll also exercise the option to use my PAS to clip into the chain.

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By Aaron M
From Westminster, CO
Mar 23, 2010
Me
Here, check these video's out. It is worth paying the $10.00 for the added info too. There are just two many different ways to set up an anchor to explain on this site.

climbinglife.com/videos/

Cheers,
Aaron

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By TheBirdman
From Eldorado Springs, Colorado
Mar 23, 2010
Scott,
So if I'm understanding you correctly, the locker attached to the sling acting as my personal anchor should sit above the eight on bite? Clip that locker to a few strands of the cordalette above the knot and I should be all set?

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By Sam Stephens
Mar 23, 2010
Top half of Melifluous
Zach Friedman wrote:
Scott, So if I'm understanding you correctly, the locker attached to the sling acting as my personal anchor should sit above the eight on bite? Clip that locker to a few strands of the cordalette above the knot and I should be all set?



Here is a picture directly out of Luebben's book. The climber is clipped into multiple strands of the anchor, but not just around one leg. The belay device is on the eight on a bight.

anchor set up with topshelf and guide
anchor set up with topshelf and guide

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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Mar 23, 2010
Bocan
Correct-a-mundo. The key is just making sure that you pass your locker through a few of the strands. You'll note in the above picture as well that the anchor is still set up to load correctly in event of a fall.

Luebenn's book preview: Check out pg 119 (book is worth the $$)
books.google.com/books?id=ZpXF...


Shelf Strengh:
climbingguidesinstitute.org/si...

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By Derek W
Mar 23, 2010
First summit of First Flatiron
I would recommend both Luebben's book and Long's book on anchors. Read them both, it helps to hear the same thing different ways. And like many people on here have said, there are too many different ways to do this and everybody has a preference that works for them. I choose the equalette over the eight on a bite because it offers better equalization at the cost of a bit more extension. You'll find how to do this in Long's book. In this case I clip into the X between the limiter knots with a separate biner right next to my biner going to the Guide and I sometimes also put a 3rd biner in the same spot for my 2nd to clip their rope into when they get up because it's not always easy to get a biner in there if its loaded at all.

Asking questions on here is great, but grab the books and get either an experienced friend or hire a guide/mentor.

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