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PostPosted: January 17th, 2007, 12:53 pm 
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OC3,

I've only skimmed the talk of rope diameters and Kn.

But in response to your last question - Can a wilderness tripper get away without carrying 100s of feat and 100s of $$ of rope?

Yes. People have been doing it for years (on the other hand, some of those people of damaged or abandonded pinned canoes in the wilderness).

My answer - it depends on your specifics and your objectives. You can travel with as little safety gear as you like, as long as then take that into consideration when deciding what rapids you run or walk. No two groups or two rivers/trips are the same, so what you caryy depends on those circumstances.

I get by with a basic kit for both playboating and tripping, relying on throw bags. However, others in the playboating may have a big bag of static line, and another consideration is that we tend to paddle pretty low-volume rivers.

PY.

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PostPosted: January 18th, 2007, 3:30 am 
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Question...Whats the difference between SRT 1 and WRT 1?


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PostPosted: January 18th, 2007, 9:49 pm 
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Hi Missbeth,

Alan is probably best person to articulate... the www site of a Rescue 3 International affiliate in BC described it as a rename of SRT1 (Swiftwater Rescue Technician Level 1) to WRT (Whitewater Rescue Technician Level 1).

That said the Rescue 3 International site show them as two separate courses...

http://www.rescue3.com/classdescriptions.html

John

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PostPosted: January 19th, 2007, 1:00 pm 
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The WRT and SRT programs are much the same, its just that the SRT has alittle bit added, it has to do with a standard that the National Fire Fighters Association wants. The WRT is the most common cert that you'll see on the river with industry guides. But the industry standards are increasing, more and more guides are taking the SRTII program. The SRT II just steps the whole rescue thing up a knotch. Your placed with teams in rescue scenarios like high angle extractions and night rescues, in or above class III, IV & V water. Lots of fun if you like that kind of stuff ???? it makes me a little nervous!!! :o

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PostPosted: February 2nd, 2007, 4:18 am 
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Location: St. Thomas, Ontario
Is this pulley adequate - [url=http://www.mec.ca/Products/product_detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524441778081&FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=2534374302690507&bmUID=1170406390593]SMC Mini CR Prusik Pulley
[/url]
Image

If not, what would you suggest?

As always Thanks in advance. AATIA

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PostPosted: February 2nd, 2007, 8:37 am 
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"Rated to 25kN breaking strength. Working load is for personal rescue only."

gotta love those disclaimers. lets see 223 (IIRC)x25 = something like 5575 pounds breaking strength, but its working load (read as "safe working load)
is for personal rescue only - i.e. hauling a 200# guy out of a crevasse ? using a z-pulley which spreads the stress out over several points ? using a rope that is probably about 5000 lbs tensile strength?

Looks perfectly fine to me. It would be way stronger than the knotted strength of your rope.



well, I looked it up again - I was close
"One kilonewton equals 101.972 kilograms of force or 224.809 pounds of force."


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PostPosted: February 2nd, 2007, 9:37 am 
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Hi Rick,
It depends on your application, yes for light work loads and small dia. rope you'll be fine. But if you get in to a situation where heavier loads and or 3/8 dia rope is needed, it won't cut it. I`d suggest the blue Petzl prusik minded, you just don't want the system to fail and ropes to let go, it could cost a personal injury to someone taking part in the rescue.

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PostPosted: February 4th, 2007, 9:15 am 
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Man, that's a big price difference between those two pulleys. Certainly no excuse for having the best and safest equipment, but.....I guess I'll have to save my allowance for a couple of more weeks. :wink:

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PostPosted: May 14th, 2008, 2:46 pm 
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Great thread to keep up to date..

New fashion in throw ropes seems to be for getting smaller (e.g 6.4mm instead of 9.5mm), and therefore harder to use with prussiks. Fortunately high-tensile rope seems more common now.

I've just been using a regular poly throw rope, but at least a thick one, minimum breaking strength of 1800lbs, but really only recommended for swimmer rescue. I'm going to upgrade to a high tensile rope that's recommended for hauling (>3,000lbs). And I'm going to get some 5mm "tech cord" for prussiks.

We tend to say "I carry 76' of rope" or "I carry 4 prussik loops" - but we should be in the habitat of also thinking about what the strength of the rope is and what it was designed for.

Cheers, PY.

Here's my related post from cboats:

>>>>>>>>>>
Many throw ropes out there are the small (6-7mm) poly ropes for swimmer rescue, with breaking strength of 800-1100lbs, and are not cool for mechanical hauling.

The big poly ropes (9.5 - 10mm), with a strength of 1800-1900lbs, are better, but still iffy for hauling?

Spectrx and other high-tensile water ropes in the large size (9.5mm) are best for thickness and strength, and are approved for rescue, with min. breaking strengths over 3,000lbs.

Normal static cord at 5mm is not recommended for prussiks, 7mm is minimum recommended with 2200lbs breaking strength. The 5mm tech cord has 5,000lbs. Make sure you grab the right 5mm cord!

I believe most caribiners and slings of 20mm nylon webbing (18-25kN) would be approaching 5,000lbs.

Our prussiks and especially throw ropes are typically our weak link, so we'd better know what we got - I'll be putting a closer eyeball to the gear of my paddling partners, and I'll be giving a nudge to those who don't carry 'biners and pulleys and who only have the 6.5mm poly rope!!

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PostPosted: May 14th, 2008, 5:41 pm 
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Looking for some critiques and suggestions please.
I've got 3 canoes on the Bloodvein this summer with around 90 rapids.
Two canoes will have a basic Z-drag kit and the canoe with the most experienced ww paddlers with primary kit.

I'm now using 3/8 spectra thanks to Alan's recommendation.

If/when Z-dragging and I need to join primary ropes, should I be using a double-fisherman's or a figure eight? With or without stoppers?

I have 1inch webbing looped with a water-knot to make an anchor.
Should the knot be changed to a double fisherman's with stoppers? Should I forget about the webbing and replace with 3/8 spectra?

I have 1/4 inch Spectra for prusiks as they are doubled. Joined with double fisherman's knots no stoppers.

I have 4 19.6Kn pulleys and 18Kn Black-Diamond oval biners.
Thinking of switching to inexpensive 23Kn wire gates.

Final questions:
How much gear/rope should be replaced after a high-strain rescue. I would think the prusik rope at a minimum as they were bent 90 degrees over the biner. But what about the anchor webbing or the primary rope?

Thanks Ted

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PostPosted: May 14th, 2008, 5:48 pm 
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Pat. the prussiks are not the weak link. The canoe is.

show me one part of a canoe that you can tie onto and put over 5000lbs of pulling force on without blowing out.

the thwarts will snap if the bolts dont give out first. The royalex will tear if you tie onto webbing grab loops. I recognize that in your previous experiance you had to haul a tree out of the way, and that is a special case.

However in most cases if you are putting that much force on a pinned boat you will rip it in half and end up with two pinned halves of a boat. If you need that much force, it is time to find a different angle to pull from.

In one case of a pinned starburst a few years ago (I posted about it on this site, search 'prussik') I actually had a prussik blow out on me. That probably saved us from the destroying the boat entirely and forced me to re-evaluate our angle. If I had been using super-strong rope (the prussick was made from cheap poly 'swimmer rescue' rope) I would have just ripped out the thwart, and had a thwartless pinned boat.

It is important to realize that in river rescue you don't (often) have the dynamic force loading associated with climbing (or falling as the case may be) Most of the techy rope guys are climbers and the gear is geared (so to speak) towards them.

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PostPosted: May 14th, 2008, 6:04 pm 
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Ted wrote:
Looking for some critiques and suggestions please.
I've got 3 canoes on the Bloodvein this summer with around 90 rapids.
Two canoes will have a basic Z-drag kit and the canoe with the most experienced ww paddlers with primary kit.

I'm now using 3/8 spectra thanks to Alan's recommendation.

If/when Z-dragging and I need to join primary ropes, should I be using a double-fisherman's or a figure eight? With or without stoppers?

I have 1inch webbing looped with a water-knot to make an anchor.
Should the knot be changed to a double fisherman's with stoppers? Should I forget about the webbing and replace with 3/8 spectra?

I have 1/4 inch Spectra for prusiks as they are doubled. Joined with double fisherman's knots no stoppers.

I have 4 19.6Kn pulleys and 18Kn Black-Diamond oval biners.
Thinking of switching to inexpensive 23Kn wire gates.

Final questions:
How much gear/rope should be replaced after a high-strain rescue. I would think the prusik rope at a minimum as they were bent 90 degrees over the biner. But what about the anchor webbing or the primary rope?

Thanks Ted

Ok, #1

Don't pin your canoe

If that fails than you have a problem.

In my experiance (6 significant pinns/wraps- only one was I paddling in), most pinned canoes come off fairly easily with a z-drag. If it is not coming off easy, then try a different technique, pull from a different part of the boat, or change the angle from shore.

Don't fight the river or the rocks or the trees because they will win every time. If you have the right setup you will not put anywhere NEAR the breaking strength on the system.

I personally would not replace any gear that was not visibly abraded or distorted. However, this gear is STRICTLY for canoe use ONLY. NOT for climbing or verticle human rescue ie cave escape etc....

Double figure 8 knots are the knot of choice, Stoppers are optional, I only use them to get the tails out of the way.

DO not replace the webbing for anchors with spectra. Sprectra has great tensile strentgh but mediocre abrasion resistance. Your anchors will get seriously abraded with any real use. The webbing is much better for this application + it has so many uses around camp that I would not subject an expensive spectra rope to.



If you do decide to replace your ropes after a pin, I will be glad to take the old ones off your hands for you. I won't even charge a disposal fee.

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PostPosted: May 14th, 2008, 6:47 pm 
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Thanks, Dan.
I was of course thinking "who said anything about a canoe", becasue I was thinking of the recent rescue. However, if you get the haul line wrapped around the pinned hull to distribute the load, and not just tied on directly, and I'm sure creative people with good access to a pin could arrange a solid multi-point anchor that would also distribute load, I'd assume that you could exceed the 800lbs strength of small poly rope and thin static-cord prussiks.

I'm just going by some MEC product descriptions that said one rope with 1100 lbs isn't recommended for use in mechanical systems. They mentioned that 1900lbs might be OK, but that high-tensile would be best.


Ted,

If you're using thick, high-tensile throw ropes, you're ahead of most people already! :clap:

One thing that got me started on this topic was recently trying to use some relatively thick prussiks on a relatively thin throw rope. Ted, test out your 1/4" prussiks, you might want to go to some thinner tech cord.

Good questions about anchors and connecting ropes! I think these details are under-appreciated and under-practiced when it comes to z-drags. If people aren't going to remember a double fishermans or figure-8 follow-through, or whatever, under pressure, I think it's best to have little (caribiner-sized only, no hands!) figure-8 loops pre-tied in the ends of your throw ropes, and then to connect with caribiners - no knots, no wasted time, no panic, no mistakes.

Those are the same reasons I like the webbing loops for anchors - nobody has to stop mid-rescue and question what kind of knot to use and whether they've done it correctly - wrap & go.

What to do if you haul in your connection all the way into the pulley is another question?! Although it shouldn't happen as much with less-stretchy ropes, you never know what the river'll give you for distances, anchors, etc. I guess it could be re-set to the one rope using a longer prussik as a brake, and adjusting to a longer anchor?

PY.

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PostPosted: May 14th, 2008, 7:03 pm 
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My point is that if 800lbs is not going to pull it off 8000lbs isn't going to do much better.

Better to find a different setup, that requires less force.

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PostPosted: May 14th, 2008, 7:27 pm 
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I get that, but...

My problem is that the term "800lbs" doesn't mean anything at all to me! I have no idea what kind of force we actually put on those ropes/systems.

How much does a 17' canoe full of 100m3/s of river weigh? Is it as "simple" is that anyway, or what pressures are multiplied in Z-drags and through knots or bends in the rope?

And, depending on where anchors are available and how accessible the pin is, we might not have much say in the angle of pull.

And, when you're in the heat of pulling and seem to be able to have success, how do you assess if you're maxing your system and need to try a different setup?

And, when the canoe, or whatever you're hauling, comes off the pin, takes up slack, goes downstream and then "falls" onto the rope again, what minimum breaking strength do you need for that?

Keep in mind I have no idea of how the answers to these question might relate to "800lbs". I just know that they're questions. If anyone has answers, that would be awesome.

So, I'm just going by the product descriptions that state a throw rope with 1100lbs of minimum breaking strength shouldn't be used for hauling with mechanical advantage.

Plus, my gut tells me that the other weekend we were very lucky to be using high-tensile rope for the rescue of a friend, and if all we had as haul line was a thin poly rope (800lbs), well... , you can't be too safe.

Maybe I'm wrong and over-reacting, but right now I'm not feeling like it's a good place to save $25, and I'd prefer that my partners upgrade to rescue-approved rope that I know is recommended for use in mechanical hauling (i.e., "Water Rescue Rope Specifications"). Besides, who can grip that little 6.4mm throw rope with ice-cold hands!

Thanks all for the good questions/discussion.

Cheers, PY.

p.s. Not all thin rope is bad for hauling (as long as your prussiks work), Spectrx is 3700lbs for the 1/4" rope!

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