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NateF

Belay device for small diameter rope

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Recently bought a cheap 9.7mm rope to use in the gym and was surprised how sketchy it feels belaying with an ATC-type device, compared to a 10mm rope.

 

Does anyone have recommendations for belay devices that work well with thinner ropes?

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9.7mm is not a skinny rope by modern standards. Any belay device should be fine.

 

With a bit more experience with your new rope, you will probably get comfortable with it and those >10mm ropes will seem enormous and clunky.

 

 

For REAL skinny ropes (<9mm) the reversino is supposed to be good. I've never used it.

 

I believe THIS is the skinniest single-rated rope on the market. 8.9mm

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9.7mm is not a skinny rope by modern standards. Any belay device should be fine.

That's what I thought, too! Have used 9.8 with same device, no problem. I'll check out the reversino. Thanks!

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There can be quite a bit of variability between stated and actual diameters of climbing ropes. Maybe that is what's going on with your two ropes.

 

What brand/model are the two ropes?

 

Also, keep in mind that new ropes are very slick and tight and will have a lot less friction than a rope that has been used a bit. With use, your rope will fuzz a bit and also fatten up slightly, giving you significantly more friction/control/stopping power.

 

I wouldn't recommend buying a specialty belay device for this rope just yet. On the other hand, if you do multipitch climbing, I would highly recommend getting an auto-block capable belay device (petzl reverso III or BD ATC Guide).

 

I have the Reverso III and have used it on single ropes down to 9.2mm (Mammut Revelation) and with 8.5mm half-ropes with no insecurity.

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Recently bought a cheap 9.7mm rope to use in the gym and was surprised how sketchy it feels belaying with an ATC-type device, compared to a 10mm rope.

 

Does anyone have recommendations for belay devices that work well with thinner ropes?

 

Are you using the ATC or the ATC-Guide/ATC-XP; both the Guide & XP have two friction modes, regular and high friction. I recently bought the Petzl Reverso III whcih also has regular and high friction modes; I've used it with ropes from 9.2 to 10.3 and I really like it. See if you can borrow one and try it before buying. Also as others have said, give your rope some time to break in.

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anything will handle a 9.7. I've used everything on my 9.4...gri-gri, reservo(ino)(3), atc, figure 8.

 

9.7 is a good size rope...takes lots of wear very well. I hate tr-ing on my 9.4.

Edited by rocky_joe

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There can be quite a bit of variability between stated and actual diameters of climbing ropes.

Sure seems that way, I'm guessing the sheath on this cord is relatively thin. I've used skinny doubles with the same device with complete confidence, but that's comparing apples to oranges.

I felt fine catching my 150ish# partner, but they weren't very confident stopping my 180#s. I'll put some wear on it, and try a few other devices. Thanks everyone.

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Kong Ghost, my favorite by a long shot so far. I also have a Reversino, a DMM Bugette, and a DMM V Twin as well (and I was a long time Reverso user for normal rope sizes).

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Hey Joseph,

BillCoe started a thread about the Kong Ghost HERE but he didn't have much to say about it.

 

Could you tell us why it's your favorite belay device?

 

 

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If you don't feel like buying another belay device, you could add friction by adding another biner to the device. Connect it just like the locking biner you already use, so you would have two biners rope to belay loop. I have done this many times to add friction for rappels and it would seem logical to work for adding friction for belaying also.

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Genepires' suggestion is a good one.

 

Also, is the rope new? New ropes slide quite a bit more than ones with a little bit of wear.

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Genepires' suggestion is a good one.
Oh? Is it? Have you ever done that? Added an additional biner to a belay device while belaying (not rappelling)? Or are you just speaking hypothetically?

 

Also, is the rope new?
Did you read the first post?
New ropes slide quite a bit more than ones with a little bit of wear.

Fascinating. Did you read any other post in this thread besides GenePires?

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I read the first couple and the last couple.

 

No, I haven't done genepires' idea, but conceptually it's good.

 

Guessing from your title that you're always a dick?

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If you dont like using the ATC you can try it with a figure 8. That might work.

 

Might work? NOT.

 

Please don't speculate to newbies if you're not sure. A fig-8 has significantly less friction than an in-line device. A fig-8 is designed more specifically for rappeling, which requires much less friction than catching a fall--especially that of someone on lead. While popular to belay with at one time (years ago after fig-8's were introduced), there have been accidents due to using fig-8's to belay lead climbers.

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In a nutshell, the Kong Ghost is smooth both belaying and rappelling. It doesn't lock up when belaying, doesn't chatter when rappelling, and just 'feels right' in both modes which is rare. I've used it for 7.8 - 9.8 thin ropes and my main complaint is that they don't make a larger one for normal ropes. I can't comment on how well it works for belaying seconds off anchors because I don't do that. I'm an old guy like Bill, and have used about every belay device ever made; it's not very often that I'm happy with one, this one I am.

 

Also a note about rope size. Yeah, today they make lighter gear and ropes are part of that so you can buy really thin ropes. But don't kid yourself, sub-10 ropes wear significantly faster, stretch more, cut easier, and are more difficult to rap. From my perspective they are specialized pieces of gear and not for beginners or new intermediate climbers. If you are using a sub-10 rope with a grigri you better be belaying like the grigri is just an ATC. And while thin ropes a boon for sport and alpine climbers, trad climbers by and large should still not be cavalier about matching ropes to routes, rock, and the likely task at hand.

 

11mm ropes are clearly dead, but today's crop of sub-10 single ropes are still not sufficient in any respect to be replacing 10-10.5mm ropes for most serious trad climbing endeavors.

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never had a problem with the mid 9's...done the whole gammut of rock climbing... heard about a lot of them cutting :rolleyes:

 

just look for cheap ropes and replace...watch bill's cheap rope posts...

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i just hip belay... pfffft! and i thought you were old skewl...

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Ah I did use a hip belay on someone this year because I didn't have a belay device but with thin ropes a hip belay is a pain. I haven't climbed in Europe but the last couple of times I climbed with a Euro it was with a skinny non single rated rope and a chain link. The chain question was serious.

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never had a problem with the mid 9's...done the whole gammut of rock climbing... heard about a lot of them cutting :rolleyes:

 

Like I said, if you're never involved with anything even potentially dicey it's all good...

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