The Origin and History of Belay Devices

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Messages 81 - 100 of total 124 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
WBraun

climber
Mar 22, 2013 - 11:18am PT
The 8 is bulky and limited.

It's the other way around.

The stitch plate is the limited one.

If you don't believe me we can go head to head you with the stitch plate and me with the Figure 8.

I will destroy your statement .....
can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
Mar 22, 2013 - 11:30am PT
This is the oldest one I have. I believe it predates any double slotted Sticht plates
Credit: can't say
mellpat

Big Wall climber
Sweden
Apr 3, 2013 - 02:25pm PT
Could you show a shot of the back and side even though there is no markings present.

I suspect that yours was cast or die forged rather than machined but I would like to confirm that. There will be a casting mark at the midline if this plate was made that way

A machined version still likely predates the one shown and we might get lucky enough to see one if this thread persists long enough. Then again at 1969 with patent pending this may be the first production model.

The back is identical with the front but lacks text. Before "Sticht Seilbremse" it says "11 mm" as in the other shown above. The "11 mm" had partly worn away in mine. No casting marks can be seen and if originally cast it appears to have been machined afterwards. It is definitely the first production model in Europe. I know because in those years I got the yearly catalogue from Sporthaus Schuster and I also subscribed to the German magazine "Alpinismus" that held a test of the Sticht plate. Some manufacturer soon afterwards sold a "copy" just consisting of two (for redundancy) circular "rapell rings" taped together and attached to a small holding sling. Perhaps an attempt to circumvent the patent.
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Apr 3, 2013 - 02:53pm PT
Carabiners, belay devices and more (Au Vieux Campeur 1972)
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 3, 2013 - 09:18pm PT
Thanks mellpat and Marlow.

Machined it is! No point in casting that shape really but I had to ask about any telltale lines. Once the demand was established, drop forging becomes a cheaper production method.

Can you tell me when Jumars first showed up in the Sporthaus Schuster catalogs if you have a good selection.
mellpat

Big Wall climber
Sweden
Apr 7, 2013 - 09:12am PT
Can you tell me when Jumars first showed up in the Sporthaus Schuster catalogs if you have a good selection.

Jumars were patented already in 1958 - see http://tinyurl.com/cpv945y
The production model for the first 20 years or so appears to be identical to that shown in the patent. Jumars seems to have been patented in just Austria and Switzerland.
I no longer have the old Schuster catalogs, but I recall that Jumars were used at Eiger Direct (Harlin route) in 1966, the year I started climbing.
dustyrat

Trad climber
Leeds, West Yorkshire
Apr 7, 2013 - 11:45am PT
Of interest, single sticht plate with spring, not sure of date though
Of interest, single sticht plate with spring, not sure of date though
Credit: dustyrat
dustyrat

Trad climber
Leeds, West Yorkshire
Apr 7, 2013 - 11:49am PT
I could be wrong but I think this device may have featured in 70's Cho...
I could be wrong but I think this device may have featured in 70's Chouinard brochures?
Credit: dustyrat
eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Apr 7, 2013 - 11:50am PT
Don't forget this wondrous Masterpiece!

photo not found
Missing photo ID#297705
dustyrat

Trad climber
Leeds, West Yorkshire
Apr 7, 2013 - 11:56am PT
Pierre Allain Descender
Pierre Allain Descender
Credit: dustyrat
Was shown in brochure and referenced by Steve, way back on second page of this thread
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Apr 7, 2013 - 12:19pm PT
In about 1983 or 4 I can remember climbing a route in the Verdon called Rve de Fer. As we were rapping down it to the start, there was a French guide coming up it with two clients. I watched his belaying technique with horror. He's simply passed his two ropes through a biner clipped to the belay and was just pulling the rope through it, his clients both climbing at the same time. Right on cue one of his clients fell off. He clamped the ropes below the biner tight with both hands and stopped the fall without too much difficulty, but of course until the person who'd fallen had regained the rock he couldn't do much for the other client who was still climbing... not ideal!

The famous "Guides Belay"! As you describe it being used it does sound slightly terrifying to witness and one can only assume that the load of the fallen climber was not even body weight.... good thing the other guy didn't plop off too!

The guides belay ( rope pinched as a bight through a biner, hand clamping both strands to arrest fall) is fine on low angle terrain where little slips can be held easily. But ..... woe is he who underestimates the load obviously. Hardly appropriate on anything truly fifth class.

The "auto block plate" you show was known around here as a Plaquette. It was a very useful tool for belaying 2 followers in a typical guiding situation. Prior to that Garda hitches served the same purpose but both tools suffered from difficulties in managing the devices for switching to lowering out or - as you noted - managing number 2 when number 1 was loading the device.

All these problems have been very neatly solved with the variety of "Reverso" type auto block / belay devices, which serve all roles beautifully with very little difficulty in switching functions.
It is interesting to note that these newer designs are essentially stich plates that have been tweaked in design in very simple yet profoundly important ways while maintaining simplicity. I don't mourn the loss of either Stich plates or figure eights at all, nor plaquettes.

It is also interesting to note that all belaying for the purpose of typical climbing situations can be managed perfectly safely ( if a bit awkwardly in some situations) with just one or two carabiners, preferably HMS and locking of course.

By the way Jaan - I was just over in your neighborhood. Nice little play ground you have there! It was really cool to finally visit the birth place of alpinism. A bit like visiting Mecca!




Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Apr 7, 2013 - 12:24pm PT
The first belay link I saw was (I believe) an MSR/Larry Penberthy device. Joe Herbst used one when we climbed the Nose in '71. I was using a Stitch at the time, he extolled the virtues of his lighter/smaller system.
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
Apr 7, 2013 - 12:30pm PT

What the living HELL is this contraption???...

Has ANYONE here ever held, seen, used one???...

WOULD anyone here even buy one???...(LOL!!!)...


...


EDITED:

I keep looking at that thing and wondering what the hell were they thinking???...

Did someone invent that thing and dream that no doubt they're going to become a millionaire with such a brilliant IMPROVEMENT????...

Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Apr 7, 2013 - 12:59pm PT
Steve.

The Jumar after some Google digging (no answer to the catalogue question):

The Scottish Mountain Heritage Collection: http://www.smhc.co.uk/objects_item.asp?item_id=32302
Credit: The Scottish Mountain Heritage Collection
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ascender_(climbing)

The Jumar got it's name from the "Ju" in Jusi and the "mar" in Marti - the inventors.
eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Apr 7, 2013 - 01:03pm PT
What the living HELL is this contraption???...

Here's the eBay link to what I call TheMechanicalClusterFuk:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/SPIDER-type-trad-protection-rock-climbing-descender-belay-device-new-/321086431157?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4ac23e1fb5

DOOD!
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
Apr 7, 2013 - 01:04pm PT

"Here's the eBay link to what I call TheMechanicalClusterFuk:"...

ekat...

That THING is HILARIOUS looking...

I would LOVE to see someone pull it out at the crags...

LMAO!!!...





EDITED:

I've looked at it a bunch of times and still can't get beyond...

WHAT THE FUK???...

LOL!!!...
eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Apr 7, 2013 - 01:18pm PT
locker. . . I sent that link to Blanchard and I could hear him cracking up in his reply email!

It really would be a fun thing to have at the crags someday when there were lots of people around.. . just whip that puppy out and very quietly clip into it and start rigging . . . just to see how long it would take for somebody to snap!

HA!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 7, 2013 - 03:04pm PT
I think it's called a ZABROK! LOL
Todd Eastman

climber
Bellingham, WA
Apr 7, 2013 - 04:48pm PT
I imagine that the cost and ethical concerns of keeping and feeding a trained belay slave had something to do with the development of belay devices...
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Topic Author's Reply - May 26, 2013 - 09:15pm PT
Going tubular was the next big step and another great Lowe innovation.




An early unmarked Lowe Tuber.




Along with a later snazzy French model.
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