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 Rope Runner testing 
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Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:25 am
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Location: Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts
Post Rope Runner testing
I made a quick video climbing on an earlier prototype of the Kevin Bingham Rope Runner. It is not in production yet but I understand it will start to become available In the beginning 2014. This is the mechanical hitch for SRT that I showed Bill and Joe (mentioned in Joe's recent Gear forum thread "Seeing some new stuff").

https://vimeo.com/78788893

After putting a few hundred feet of tree time on it I'm very happy with it. First impressions were that it was a bit too much stuff on the rope in front of me but those concerns have gone away. During ascent it rides up with zero resistance. It grabs immediately on sit back and there is no loss of progress when you sit back. It takes up much less vertical space on rope than a hitch and Rope Wrench setup. This is huge, much more room for your arms to pull rope during ascent. It descends very smoothly with no mode change/switchover required. It can be be a hair jerky when you start rappel but compared to a Grigri for example, much smoother. Once you're moving very smooth. An unexpected cool feature is that you can use it to descend an angled tensioned line, Yoyoman and Kevin tried this at the 'vous and it worked very well, runs smooth on a zip and brakes nicely when you want to slow down or stop. Another good feature is that it takes up slack very nicely when you're coming back from a limbwalk, the Rope Wrench is not great for that as you have to work a little extra hard to take the slack out with it.

Prediction is this device will be very well received by tree climbers who want hitch-like functionality on single rope with a mechanical device.
-AJ


Last edited by moss on Mon Jan 06, 2014 1:18 am, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:56 am
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Post Re: Rope Runner testing
Looks like a really nice piece of gear! And thanks for the video. Do you have some sort of neck elastic connected to it? Or is it just clipped to your harness with a carabiner?
Any idea on the retail price?


Sat Jan 04, 2014 8:50 pm
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Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 7:56 pm
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Location: British Columbia, Canada
Post Re: Rope Runner testing
I don't know how I managed to miss this video when it was first posted, but I did! That device looks pretty interesting, but I am confused about something: Andrew, you start off saying that it is a Rope Wrench, but then say that it takes up less room than a Rope Wrench and hitch. Is this, in fact, a new version that will replace the original, or a different device altogether?


Sun Jan 05, 2014 1:23 am
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Post Re: Rope Runner testing
Dietley wrote:
I don't know how I managed to miss this video when it was first posted, but I did! That device looks pretty interesting, but I am confused about something: Andrew, you start off saying that it is a Rope Wrench, but then say that it takes up less room than a Rope Wrench and hitch. Is this, in fact, a new version that will replace the original, or a different device altogether?


Ahhhh! My mistake, I corrected it. The device is called a Rope Runner. It is a mechanical hitch designed for SRT. It does not replace the Rope Wrench, it is a mechanical version of the wrench and performs similarly on single rope.
-AJ


Mon Jan 06, 2014 1:21 am
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Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:25 am
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Location: Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts
Post Re: Rope Runner testing
Martin wrote:
Looks like a really nice piece of gear! And thanks for the video. Do you have some sort of neck elastic connected to it? Or is it just clipped to your harness with a carabiner?
Any idea on the retail price?


I have a bungee (HUT or Holder Upper Thingy) attached to the device (Rope Runner) to advance it during ascent. The Rope Runner is attached to my harness with a carabiner.
-AJ


Mon Jan 06, 2014 1:24 am
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Post Re: Rope Runner testing
The new version of the Rope Runner comes with a miniscule clip that attaches your over-the-shoulder lanyard line to the slick pin on the rope runner. That way it self tends as you climb.


Tue Apr 08, 2014 2:13 pm
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Post Re: Rope Runner testing
Don't just clip your over-the-shoulder lanyard into your attachment carabiner to tend it--that can and will fail it.


Tue Jun 10, 2014 3:02 pm
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Post Re: Rope Runner testing
A couple years later.... I picked up a Rope Runner for a good price at a green industry trade show last year. I had a lot of problems with it, mainly that it wasn't releasing smoothly on the 24-strand 11mm or greater ropes I had, New England Ropes Fly and NE Ropes Tachyon. A couple of week sago I was going through some random old gear in the basement and found a forgotten 120' length of the Yale Ropes 11.7mm line Poison Ivy. Every since the runner came out there've been endless posts on the arborist forums and FB about what's the the best rope to match with the runner. The general consensus has been any of the Yale 11.7mm 24-strands or the Yale 11mm like Blaze, Bandit and the extremely rare ;-) Confetti are all very good.

So there I am, stubbornly refusing to buy a new rope, now a Yale 11.7mm is in my hands, that I already owned ;-) I took the runner and PI for a spin on a woods climb and it was most excellent, very smooth release, with a little practice on my grip (a couple fingers pinching the rope above the runner as I nudged the "bird" down) I could do a very smooth/controlled release with no feet on the tree, no hand on the down rope. Not recommended if you haven't already practiced and perfected this technique with a hitch, you could take a very fast ride to the ground. At any rate that's was the ultimate soft release test for me. So problem solved, if you have a runner and have been having trouble with jumpy descent, the answer is the rope choice.

What's good about the runner is during ascent the rope drops through it like water down a drain. It's very compact vertically which can be helpful, especially in a situation where you're reaching back to it when the rope is angled away from you, it will never be out of reach. I've been using it a lot now, I usually just slide it on the rope from one end rather than disassemble and reassemble on the rope.

Image

-AJ


Sun Dec 18, 2016 9:37 am
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