Route Guide - iPhone / Android - Partners - Forum - Photos - Deals - What's New - School of Rock
Login with Facebook
 ADVANCED
How do you place a cam to prevent it from walking
View Latest Posts in This Forum or All Forums
   Page 1 of 2.  1  2   Next>   Last>>
Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.
1

Email me.
 
By Matt Hasenohr
Jan 27, 2011

Hi, I'm sort of new to trad(cleaning/following mainly), and I'm a bit unsure how to properly place a cam to prevent it from walking deeper into the crack/out of it's place. What things can you look for when placing a cam? Thanks a bunch!


FLAG
By Brian Snider
From NorCal
Jan 27, 2011
Me

Super glue.


FLAG
By Abram Herman
From Golden, CO
Jan 27, 2011
Viking helmet cover, yep.

If you can place the cam in front of some feature that prevents it from moving back into the crack that works, but generally you prevent walking by extending your placements - put an extended sling on it to prevent the movement of the rope from causing it to walk back into the crack.


FLAG
By Phil Lauffen
From The Bubble
Jan 27, 2011
RMNP skiing. Photo by Nodin de Saillan

Runner it! In my experience cams tend to walk because the rope pushes/pulls them around, so prevent that by putting a qd or alpine draw on it.


FLAG
By Matt Hasenohr
Jan 28, 2011

Ok, this helps a lot...thank you


FLAG
By David Appelhans
From Lafayette
Jan 28, 2011
Imaginate

Phil Lauffen wrote:
Runner it! In my experience cams tend to walk because the rope pushes/pulls them around, so prevent that by putting a qd or alpine draw on it.


runners on cams = no walking.


FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Jan 28, 2011
Bocan

While a runner doesn't mean 100% no walking, as said above look at your placements. Look for features that will prevent, know what cams walk more (metolius) and if it's a completely parallel crack there's no need to set it ALL the way back. Give it a little extra room if it does walk. In a crack that's the same way all the way back there's no sense in going all the way back to your knuckles.


FLAG
By Kent Pease
From Littleton, Colorado
Jan 28, 2011

The position of the cam in irregular cracks makes a big difference too. Placing cams in upward flares leads to walking and in this position they tend to “umbrella” too. A more stable position is in a parallel section of crack just below a constriction, or in a pocket. The constriction does not need to be big and can be a crystal or micro bump in the crack.

Note that some units are more prone to movement than others. Units with 3 cams, and those with 4 cams where the 2 inner cams are next to each other (common for two-stemmed units) tend to wobble more than units with 4 cams where the inner cams are separated (such as for a single-stem units).


FLAG
By Eric D
From Gnarnia
Jan 28, 2011
Born again on the last move of the Red Dihedral, high Sierras.

Cams usually walk when they are placed in a flare. If possible place them in a parellel section of the crack. If your only option is a flare, then use a long runner to minimize walking.


FLAG
By Marc H
From Lafayette, CO
Jan 28, 2011
The Cathedral Spires in RMNP, left to right: Stiletto, Sharkstooth, Forbidden Tower, Petit Grepon, The Saber, The Foil, The Moon & The Jackknife.

Scott McMahon wrote:
...know what cams walk more (metolius)...


I had a Metolius rep brag to me a bunch of years ago that their cams had the heaviest spring tension (of all the major players in the US market) and are therefore less prone to walking. In my experience they do walk a bit more, but I think that's because I tend to use only fingery-size in Metolius cams; larger cams are inherently less likely to walk. Aliens have the most flexible single stem which helps prevent them from walking. The single-stem design of the Master Cams is better than double-stem design of all Metolius' other units, but still not as good as Alien.

Another little trick: When placing cams in horizontals, orienting the outside lobes downward makes it slightly more stable.

--Marc


FLAG
By Brian in SLC
Jan 28, 2011
Climbing in Smuggler's Notch

Give it a strong tug when you find a secure placement, and, if walking might be an issue, sling it long.

If its set hard, sometimes that's enough to keep it from moving. Also, even a short quickdraw will sometimes provide enough of a hinge that the cam will stay put.


FLAG
By Bob A
Feb 3, 2011

Like everyone else said,extend with a sling to keep the rope from pushing the placement in.Also,if the crack is not flared there is no reason to shove it in all the way to the trigger.Your second will thank you for placing it a bit more to the outside to make it easier to remove.


FLAG
By Adam Paashaus
From Greensboro, North Carolina
Feb 3, 2011
After you get done climbing be sure to head up to the summit for sunset. Its only a 10 minute walk from the main wall. Don't forget your headlamp.

Many times (if you are not at "the creek" the crack will have slight irregularities and if you pivot the cam back and forth it will find a spot in the crack that the cam just naturally wants to be and it wont walk any further back. When doing this just make sure you dont intentionally walk the cam too far back in the crack. Then, if you are still worried or the pitch wanders, put a sling on it.
Adam


FLAG
By john strand
From southern colo
Feb 3, 2011

Place them less vertically ( no not horizontal). But at a bit of an angle.This way less of a tendency to "walk up"


FLAG
By camhead
From Vandalia, Appalachia
Feb 3, 2011
You stay away from mah pig!

if you do extend your cam (which you should on occasions when you are worried about it walking), use a loose runner, rather than a sport quickdraw.


FLAG
By Gunkiemike
Aug 25, 2011

Marc H wrote:
Another little trick: When placing cams in horizontals, orienting the outside lobes downward makes it slightly more stable. --Marc


I don't believe there is any proof of this. Certainly there's nothing about the physics of torque and outward pressure due to the springs to support it.

As with Tricams, you place the unit whichever way makes best use of the irregularities of the placement.


FLAG
By DannyUncanny
From Vancouver
Aug 25, 2011

I would imagine that for an equivalent placement with equal slinging, how far a cam will walk will entirely depend on the width of the head (how much space between the outer cam lobes), the length of the stem, and the spring torque. To some extent it may depend on the stem rigidity, but I believe that for most cams they will be sufficiently rigid that it can be discounted.

So to build a cam that doesn't walk. You would want really stiff springs, a really narrow head, and either a short stem or a long stem, I'm not sure which would be better. A long stem would give a bigger lever arm to rotate the cam, but a short stem would rotate more for small pulls.


FLAG
By andrewc
Aug 25, 2011

For each placement, think of these two things.
One, do I need to extend this placement to reduce rope drag?
Two, what will happen if the rope pulls on this cam? Will it walk in? Will it open up to much into a widening crack?

You can move it back and forth to anticipate the consequences of the cam walking. If there won't be a problem with drag and the cam doesn't walk or there is no downside to it slightly walking, then don't extend it.

If drag is an issue or the cam seems poised to walk into trouble, appropriately extend the piece or relocate it.

When beginning to lead, you should always error on the side of extending placements too much. If you aren't totally sold that a piece will not walk or cause drag issues, extend it.


FLAG
By andrewc
Aug 25, 2011

DannyUncanny wrote:
I would imagine that for an equivalent placement with equal slinging, how far a cam will walk will entirely depend on the width of the head (how much space between the outer cam lobes), the length of the stem, and the spring torque. To some extent it may depend on the stem rigidity, but I believe that for most cams they will be sufficiently rigid that it can be discounted. So to build a cam that doesn't walk. You would want really stiff springs, a really narrow head, and either a short stem or a long stem, I'm not sure which would be better. A long stem would give a bigger lever arm to rotate the cam, but a short stem would rotate more for small pulls.


I think the ultimate cam would be ridiculously floppy when placed and then would stiffen up as soon as you pulled the trigger.

Like one of these:


FLAG
By rgold
From Poughkeepsie, NY
Aug 25, 2011
The traverse out to the Yellow Ridge on the Dogstick Ridge link-up.  Photo by Myriam Bouchard

Cams walk when they are subjected to torques from forces parallel to the crack direction. In vertical cracks, these forces are either upward or downward forces. They typically occur when rope tension, which tries to make the rope form a straight line, pulls the rope away form the cliff face and so rotates cams in vertical cracks up until the stems are perpendicular to the cliff face. If the cam is then weighted directly, it rotates down and walks in some more.

The purpose of the sling is to be long enough so that as the rope tightens and approaches a straight line, there is still slack in the slings and so no rotational torque on the cams. Visualizing what a straight rope path will look like when you are higher will give you some clues about whether you need longer slings and if so, how long they should be.

Sometimes, slingage is not enough, and you need a directional piece below the rotationally-threatened cams to keep the rope close to the cliff face; the same type of thing people do to prevent nuts from lifting.

For cams in horizontal cracks, the torques result from horizontal loads. What you want in this case is to have as straight a rope path as possible. To protect any one piece from rotation, you will frequently need long slings, not only on the piece itself, but also on the piece below and the piece above in order to keep the rope path straight. This is one of the many situations in which double ropes are advantageous (although you probably won't hear this mentioned much in discussions about such ropes). As in the case of vertical cracks, sometimes a directional piece can keep the horizontal load off a cam.

Beyond these simple cases, there are other geometries that lead to cam rotation. In all cases, thinking about what would happen if the tensioned rope formed a straight line will make it clear which cams are likely to rotate and what type of slingage will protect them.


FLAG
By DannyUncanny
From Vancouver
Aug 25, 2011

The really dangerous situation (for losing cams) is a crack that splits up through a roof. If you put a cam into this crack and the rope goes up past it through the crack, tension from above after you pass the roof can drive the cam far beyond reach.


FLAG
By Yarp
Aug 26, 2011

Brian in SLC wrote:
Give it a strong tug when you find a secure placement, and, if walking might be an issue, sling it long. If its set hard, sometimes that's enough to keep it from moving.


Setting cams?

ummmmmm OK?

I'm gonna go ahead and assume that was a joke and you don't really have that poor of an understanding of how cams work.


FLAG
By brenta
From Boulder, CO
Aug 26, 2011
Cima Margherita and Cima Tosa in the Dolomiti di Brenta.  October 1977.

Gunkiemike wrote:
I don't believe there is any proof of this. Certainly there's nothing about the physics of torque and outward pressure due to the springs to support it. As with Tricams, you place the unit whichever way makes best use of the irregularities of the placement.

Metolius recommends placing the outside lobes on the bottom in their cam manual (Figure 11). I suspect that it is to minimize the lever arm of the downward component of the force applied to the U stem.


FLAG
By Pete Spri
Aug 26, 2011

Yarp wrote:
Setting cams? ummmmmm OK? I'm gonna go ahead and assume that was a joke and you don't really have that poor of an understanding of how cams work.


Get a clue, sprayer.


FLAG
By Yarp
Aug 26, 2011

Spri wrote:
Get a clue, sprayer.



So that means you set your cams Spri?


FLAG
By John Husky
Aug 26, 2011

To answer the OP the best way to learn is to do it a ton. Like if you have some time at the crag try placing them, all diferent sizes in various ways, tipped out to tight. You'll see that placing them in pods, constricting above and below, is about ideal. perfectly parallel or flaring is more dicey. The culprit is rope drag, sling em if you can. I find in the east that the cracks are not prone to walking cams (at least the easy ones I climb), but the cam will just rotate and still be bomber.


FLAG


Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.
1

Email me.
Page 1 of 2.  1  2   Next>   Last>>