Best advice how to get back stacked big Camelot ?


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Trad climber
San Jose, CA
Topic Author's Original Post - Aug 14, 2012 - 10:44pm PT
What is the best technique to get stacked big Camelot ?
I made a bad placement moving #6 up and it stacked [ edited: I meant stuck]. One pair of lobes is still moving, but other is not. I spent half hour to get it back and gave up. Planning to go this weekend to try it again.
Would you share what you do to get such cams back ?
Some tricks, tools ?

Edit: I have no picture. I'll go this weekend and try to get it back using methods you advised.
If it worked I'll sent the author of the best advise a gift.
If it not work- I'll sent to the author of the best advice exact location of the #6


Trad climber
Aug 14, 2012 - 10:52pm PT
I don't get the question?


Aug 14, 2012 - 10:57pm PT
In my best rusglish to english interpretation

I'm getting that he has a stuck (big) camelot and wants advice on how to get it out, he was pushing it up above him and one pair of lobes is stuck.

I know a guy (geologist) who brought along a rock hammer to booty stuff... might be useful?

Trad climber
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:03pm PT
I've never seen a stuck big cam. Too bad as they are expensive. Get in there and work the lobes and move it back and forth, you'll get it out.


Aug 14, 2012 - 11:07pm PT
The biggest I've seen is a stuck #3 C4, it was on the route for a few days before it got bootied.

Large horizontal slot under a block , the stem was turned INTO the rock from all the removal attempts, since It was pivoting slightly on one pair of lobes I knew it was removable but didnt want to waste time.

Social climber
Joshua Tree
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:09pm PT
Pull the trigger, and with the trigger pulled as far as it will go, hit it with a hammer from above, on top of the two stuck lobes.

Ice climber
canyon country,CA
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:36pm PT
previously posted
previously posted
Credit: rwedgee

Oakland, CA
Aug 14, 2012 - 11:50pm PT
I once freed a stuck'ish BD #5 using this method, which sounds a little goofy but it worked. It depends a lot on the orientation of the stem. Mine was sticking straight out, that is, dead horizontal, not up or down with the crack.

On toprope, get alongside the cam and then:

-Girth a sling to your harness.
-Clip this girthed sling into the cam. The sling that connects your harness to the cam has to be kind of short.
-Plant your feet on either side of the crack, retract the trigger as far as you possibly can, and start heaving straight back with the big muscles of your legs. Key that you keep that trigger pulled as far back as possible without snapping wires.
-I had to tweak the angle that I was pulling, kind of pulling up and down a bit by using my legs, before it finally came out.

ElCap's idea is simpler, I'd try that first.

Final thought - always look for crystals around/under the stuck lobes that you can shatter with your nut tool or similar. Sometimes it's not much surface area that is keeping the lobes where they are, though the bigger the cam the less likely this will work.

Good luck.
Greg Barnes

Aug 14, 2012 - 11:53pm PT
Come back when it's at the coldest part of the day (daybreak usually), then try.


Wilderness, Home
Aug 15, 2012 - 12:08am PT
I'd go up there with 4 nut tools, a hammer, and a hacksaw blade. A second set of hands would be freaking awesome too. Even if it comes down to running the hacksaw blade thru the lope rock contact, you still got a perfect big cam with one little flat spot.

Directissima or whatnot up at Chasm View had 4! fixed #4's on it when I went thru. Rumor is if you got 8 ft long arms it's always a producer.

Wilderness, Home
Aug 15, 2012 - 12:12am PT
The sick thing with big cams, is you girth hitch slings thru the holes in the lobes, and get mad torque without wrecking the trigger wires. 4 nut tools hooked in the lobes and cranked.... tap tap tap up down sideways while constantly lobe pulling..

I'd get it in 2 mins max

or 2 hours

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Aug 15, 2012 - 12:14am PT
The trigger does not retract the lobes as far as they can go. Bring two nut tools with good hook ends or better, two fifi hooks and with some keeper cord on each. Hook each tool into the top hole of a stuck lobe, clip the keeper cords together and pull down---this will give you more retraction than you can get with the trigger.

I've gotten a bunch of stuck cams out this way while seconding with just one nut tool, retracting a single cam at a time and pivoting the cam just a little to work the retracted cam to a wider place.

Sometimes spitting on the cam/rock contact areas seems to help.

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
Aug 15, 2012 - 03:28am PT
My technique made Climbing Magazine's list of best Tech Tips ever. Bottom line, for most cam manufacturers, the trigger bar does not contract the cams to their smallest size. Squeeze the trigger bar as tight as you can and then move the stuck cam lobes a bit more with your fingers and the cam will usually come out.
Ben Emery

Trad climber
Australia via Bay Area via Australia...
Aug 15, 2012 - 06:10am PT
Sometimes spitting on the cam/rock contact areas seems to help.

I've had similar success with cam lube as a last resort.

Probably best left as an absolute last resort and cleaned up well lest it unpleasantly surprise the next climber, though...

I like the sound of the setup with the fifi hooks.

Aug 15, 2012 - 11:56am PT
Best first advice: Start with an Editor.

'Tired of bad spelling/grammar that coulda been fixed before posting...

'just sayin' - ec

Aug 15, 2012 - 12:54pm PT
To the contrary, how I've gotten out stuck cams is to leash onto the trigger and yard on that; using your hand, all the weight from your daisy or a swing away with a hammer. The trick is to shock load the lobes into a narrower position and pull it out. Now, if the cam(s) is tipped against the opposite wall this still can work, unless prior futzing has made it unmoveable at all; there's got to be some, if so little, free-play.
rgold is on the right track, bhilden, come on Bruce, your fingers?

Trad climber
Aug 15, 2012 - 01:19pm PT
Girth hitch a pair of slings through the holes in the stuck lobes, talk your partner into taking a factor 2 fall onto the slings.

Santa Barbara, CA
Aug 15, 2012 - 01:31pm PT
Post location of said cam and it will quickly be unstacked.

Trad climber
Upper Leftish
Aug 15, 2012 - 01:31pm PT
I've removed two different stuck #4's simply by dousing the rock/cam with water. Gives just enough lubrication and nothing to clean up...

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
Aug 15, 2012 - 01:39pm PT
Stacked meaning "inverted" lobes? 2 lobes pointing up the crack and the other side pointing down?

Some dude was on the taco giving nice detailed info on how to do it with zipties.

He seemed to have his shitd dialed.
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