gri-gri for solo top-rope


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Messages 1 - 17 of total 17 in this topic

Trad climber
minneapolis, mn
Topic Author's Original Post - Jul 17, 2017 - 09:35am PT
I'm sure this has been discussed ad nauseum but the ST search function is worthless

just a quick question. What is the risk of using an unmodified gri-gri for solo top-roping? I'd guess it would be the a "fall" would be too slow to cause the lock-up

curious because I did this yesterday with backup knots on a second line. had no issue with the gri-gri failing; seemed pretty legit

san francisco
Jul 17, 2017 - 09:38am PT
If the brake end is looped over the cam, it won't catch. You could take a big whipper. backup knots would stop you, it's better to use 2 microtraxions or another good setup.
Hardly Visible

Social climber
Llatikcuf WA
Jul 17, 2017 - 09:43am PT
I don't think you would have any problem with it locking in a fall, my problem with it was that it doesn't feed itself so you have to continually pull slack thru the device. I switched to a mini-traxion long ago and never looked back.
Captain...or Skully

Boise, ID
Jul 17, 2017 - 02:24pm PT
I've used a gri-gri, but I like(d) to use like a microscender better. Smoother feeding and less hassle.

Werner edit: There's a way to be helpful, but that's just mean.

Jul 17, 2017 - 02:28pm PT
Anyone using a grigri for solo top-rope is insane.

I've done thousands and thousands of feet top rope soloing and that stoopid grigri does not feed anywhere efficiently as other products.

But there are always people using the worst and wrong tools to do a simple thing efficiently ......

Sport climber
Jul 17, 2017 - 03:53pm PT
yer gunna die!

Grizzlyville, WY
Jul 17, 2017 - 04:00pm PT
The duck speaketh the truth.

Jul 17, 2017 - 04:37pm PT
Honnold tr solos with a grigri often. He says it makes it feel a bit more like leading since you have to pull the rope through the grigri. And he thinks it is easier to work hard moves. But I'm not sure his personal safety standards should be applied to the general climbing community.

Trad climber
minneapolis, mn
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 17, 2017 - 09:28pm PT
Anyone using a grigri for solo top-rope is insane.

Honnold tr solos with a grigri often.


Trad climber
Jul 17, 2017 - 11:59pm PT
Coursesetters at the largest companies use the gri gri for protection and ascension all over the world, while setting and running routes on toprope. The device has proven its worth in hundreds of thousands of hours of commercial use. You should probably be prepared to grab your brakeline at some point if you use it this way. The important thing is to use a ten millimeter rope if you have an older unit. Ropes smaller than 9.8 are not very good for this application. Obviously you have to pull your own slack. And never allow your anchor line to pull rope through the device on steep overhangs. This occurs when using a floor anchor while leading. Penalty slack can occur under these circumstances. However, if the rope is tied to your harness, over the anchor above and belayed through the device on your belay loop this does not happen. Furthermore, if you attach the end of the rope to an anchor at the top of your route and belay off the other end you wont get slack either as long as you keep your rope taught. I prefer to use the gri gri this way when coursesetting and even tree trimming as it takes up slack one handed, while conventional taught line hitches (monkeys fist or prussik) require both hands to ascend. Addition of a traxion or ascender to the anchor line and use of the tail of the gri gri brake line though a carabiner on the ascender makes for a nice three to one when ascending a single line and even more if tied in and belayed over the anchor. Stopper knots for backup can be used for additional protection when not self belaying over the soft blue gym floor. Probably the most critical concern when self belaying in this way is if you do it with the rope tied to your harness over an anchor, without a belay master to separate the lines, the tie in line mashes up against the gri gri, interfering with the cam. For this reason, it is often best to use a floor anchor to secure the taught end of the rope and run only the climber end through the gri gri without tying anything to your harness. When I climb this way I go "through both" with the gri gri on my harness to keep it in the proper orientation and prevent it from flopping around and turning upside down when there is slack. Lastly, when anchors are set at the bottom of your route, they better be bombproof and oriented for upward loading. Happy soloing.

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, California
Jul 18, 2017 - 06:30am PT
But I'm not sure his personal safety standards should be applied to the general climbing community.

Any climber who survives years of rope-work, has a healthy respect for the consequences of making a f-up happen or having an equipment failure.

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Jul 18, 2017 - 06:36am PT
Coursesetters at the largest companies...

Crikey, no wonder it's all in the shitter...

Social climber
carmel, ca
Jul 18, 2017 - 09:17am PT
Werner looking for mileage a la Werner is using what is right for him.

Others looking to "work" a crux and repeatedly climb up and lower back down short sections are using what is right for them.

In either case never rely on one device to save your life or you are rolling the dice.

Trad climber
Jul 18, 2017 - 09:43am PT
"Its all in the shytter"? I reference coursesetters because they are the only large group of users who deploy the device all day everyday. The most reliable belayers are those who practice the craft all the time. Also, in terms of exposure to risk, coursesetters are exposed to more man hours of exposure than any other group. Even professional outdoor climbers are few in number and may or may not accumulate the number of hours on rope as routesetters do. Im sure plenty of weekend warriors have their opinions. And many folks criticise those who work in climbing gyms as not real climbers. Of course the objective hazards outdoors are many and the gym is a controlled environment. However, folks who work daily with their gear in the vertical world rack up more technical experience than those who dont. I have nearly 10,000 hours of experience belaying and self belaying in gyms with the gri gri. While there are others who may have more experience belaying, I think you will find that most of them use gri gris also. Lastly, to criticize gym pros is short sighted considering the origins of some of histories great climbers like Margo Hayes (USAC), Beth Rodden (Rocknasium), Alex Honnold (Granite Arch), the list is long..... Climbing gyms are a controlled environment with standards that are enforced and consistent. Their business model requires it. Outdoor climbing is a free for all with no rules except for gravity.
jeff constine

Trad climber
Ao Namao
Jul 18, 2017 - 09:44am PT
Credit: jeff constine
Great for lead rope solo if you know the tricks.

Jul 18, 2017 - 11:45am PT
I use a (modded) GriGri for running laps on a top-rope BUT itīs on the other line as a back-up/getting back down, on the main line I use a Shunt. The GriGri is ok after enough rope weight gets on it to feed (say 20ft or so)but that depends on the rope really.
I trust it to stop me, I lead solo on it.
Killer K

Boulder climber
Sacramento, CA
Jul 18, 2017 - 11:53am PT
I would trust a gri gri for tr solo no worries. At granite arch they used to let the members tr solo on all the routes. Probably have done it 100s of times. Although there are more efficient techniques with the mini trax. I too am a arborist with many years in the vertical world (20+)
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