Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • olyclimber

      WELCOME TO THE CASCADECLIMBERS.COM FORUMS   02/03/18

      We have upgraded to new forum software as of late last year, and it makes everything here so much better!  It is now much easier to do pretty much anything, including write Trip Reports, sell gear, schedule climbing related events, and more. There is a new reputation system that allows for positive contributors to be recognized,  it is possible to tag content with identifiers, drag and drop in images, and it is much easier to embed multimedia content from Youtube, Vimeo, and more.  In all, the site is much more user friendly, bug free, and feature rich!   Whether you're a new user or a grizzled cascadeclimbers.com veteran, we think you'll love the new forums. Enjoy!
Sign in to follow this  
catbirdseat

Piton Craft

Recommended Posts

Can anyone point me to old threads that address issues of piton craft, selection, etc? I found a little on the subject, but my search skills suck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jeez, man, it's 2003. In case you hadn't noticed, some cats by the name of Chouinard and Robbins came up with these passive chock thingies that can be used instead of pitons, so you don't beat the shit out of the rock. "Hammerless protection," they call it. It's only been around for the past 30 years or so, though, so it's understandable that you may have missed hearing about it. Yes, friend, you need to step into the present and learn all about Chock craft, and leave those damaging old pitons in the garage.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DFA I've been in a number of situations in the canadian rockies where a piton was all that would work. They have their place still. fruit.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just buy a few different ones and pound on em at some roadside shitpile or mossy cliff somewhere.

 

1.Slide it in till it constricts (about 1/2 way)

2. Bang on it and the pitch will increase.

3. Stop banging on it when the pitch is the same twice in a row.

4. It's crap if you get a thud, or some unmusical sound.

5. or just wail on it till it fuses to the rock.

 

They are very very very useful iceclimbing where the rock is waterpolished and the only cracks are tiny, or wierd.

 

To get em out, use a shitty biner that you will never use and attach it to a sling you will never use and pull on the sling atttached to the biner and tap the piton left to right until it loosens enough to yank out w/you ax or hammer. Or give up and wail on it some more and give your parnter $10 for fucking up his/her piton.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First, for DFA's sake, let me say that I would never think of using a piton where passive pro is an option. I am not into aid climbing at this point. I just want to learn how to bang in a piton on alpine route, especially mixed routes on manky rock, so that if I can't find a chock placement, or a screw placement, I have one more option to protect the route. So if I had to carry three pitons to use in emergencies, which three would I carry? A related question is how well do ice hammers work at driving pitons versus a dedicated piton hammer?

 

Also I was reading a thread from March(?) 2002 on ball nuts for cracks too thin for cams (even zero cams). Some said they are unreliable, while others said they were. Given a choice between a small ball nut in a thin crack or a piton, which is more secure? I think that the answer is going to be the piton. I am thinking of carrying one or two ball nuts. They can be used for aid and for setting up anchors when its hard to find an opposition placement.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So if I had to carry three pitons to use in emergencies, which three would I carry? A related question is how well do ice hammers work at driving pitons versus a dedicated piton hammer?

A bugaboo, or thin lost arrow, or a baby angle will work in many situations (whacking in a pin sandwiched next to a nut will work in wider cracks if the dire need arises. Of course, it's all route dependent). A hammer on an ice tool works well enough.

Any rime, or verglas on rock will limit the ability of passive, or camming, pro to hold even body weight. I have no ethical problems with whacking in a pin in such situations. Especially given that ice-wedging will probably be in strong effect, and pin-damage will disappear with the fast erosion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just buy a few different ones and pound on em at some roadside shitpile or mossy cliff somewhere.

 

Not to be confused with any established Clean aid or free climbing routes. You'd think everybody knows this, but, pins still show up on the lower town wall's free routes for some reason.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I gotta agree with bumbly gumby 'bout selection. Lost arrows and knifeblades have saved my bacon a few times. There is a lot of bacon! There is a good place to bang in pins far left of the climbing area at exit 38. We actually climbed some ice there 'bout 5 years ago and used knife blades for pro. WAY left of the climbing area though.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The store where I went had a limited selection, so this is what I ended up with:

1) A Bugaboo Short/Thin #3

2) A Lost Arrow Short/ medium #2-1D

3) A Lost Arrow Long/ thin #5

 

I'll probably go back and pick up one BD knife blade standard someplace. I've been told that N. Face of Chair has lots of thin cracks.

 

A friend told me that up the bike trail a half a mile from the Deception Crags section of Exit 38 there are cliff faces that are almost identical to the developed ones. I've glimpsed it from the highway, but have never been up there. Seems like that might be a good place to practice mixed climbing (and yes, pounding in pitons).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Which pins? Ones that people dropped, or ones that were left in the rock? Even if you don't use them, they look cool hanging there on your rack. fruit.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

THEY ONES THEY POUND IN THE ROCK AND LEAVE...

 

THERE ARE CERTAINLY SOME FIXED PINS THAT ARE ESTABLISHED, BUT THERE DOES FROM TIME TO TIME PINS THAT APPEAR ON FREE CLIMBS...GRANTED WE ALL CANNOT DO THE FREE CLIMBS...BUT I THINK IN THE NAME OF ROCK PRESERVATION WE SHOULD ABADE FROM NAILING THEM....

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have yet to use my KBs or LAs, but I think they are an important component to an alpine rack when exploring unknown peaks or ones with little beta.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I d ont think you can buy Shallow Angles anymore though...they are angle pitons bent wider than normal angles, almost flat on the tip... Serl told me they were a bit unsafe cause the design put more load on the eye.... of course I have like 30 of the beasts...

 

If Im taking pins I usually take about 6: 1 kb, 2 bugaboo, 2 small/shallow angles and one small-medium angle. If Im planning on using them to leave as rap pins I usually take some soft iron Euro-pin skinny LAs instead of the Bugaboos.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

×