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Old 10-08-2013, 10:34   #31
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I started a thread a few months ago about the ATN mast climber after I had a near failure...

Background--- Yesterday before climbing the mast I did my normal safety check of the Mast Climber. I have worked around safety gear for most of my life and while not perfect, if my life depends on some gear I am rather anal about the gear check. Pre-climb the gear checked fine.

Problem--- When I got down and did the post-climb gear check I realized how lucky I was. The mast climber I use has two shackles that join each ascender to the straps that hold user. The shackles used have a straight pin that is held in place SOLELY by a round cotter pin. During the climb, the repetitive motion of ascending and descending caused the retaining cotter pin to come out. Had the pin fallen out, I would have lost the lower strap and my footing. While the lost of footing would have resulted in a more challenging descent, separation of the shackle that holds the seat, would probably have resulted in the user denting the deck and perhaps damaging the deck's (and my) core.

Solution-- replaced the circular cotter pins with straight ones. As part of the pre-climb safety check wrap them with sail tape to prevent chaffing, as part of the post-climb remove the tape.

With this small mod, I am very comfortable with the gear.

" requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people's hats off- then, I account it high time to get to sea..." Ishmael
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Old 16-08-2013, 02:54   #32
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Knots work well, e.g. Prusik knot,

John B.
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Old 30-07-2015, 19:59   #33
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Re: Mast Climbing

I've read through the threads on using climbing harnesses for ascending the mast, but have not yet found the information I am seeking.

I have an ATN Top Climber that works well, but I need to setup a backup harness/halyard that is independent from the TopClimber and its halyard, but I can't figure out which climbing harness would be best to use; there are so many choices and, not being an actual climber, I have no idea what I 'm looking for.

The backup is going to be worn under the Top Climber, so it needs to be not too bulky and its purpose is to prevent me from falling to the deck if the TopClimber or its halyard fails. The backup harness will be on a separate halyard.

Does anyone have recommendations on which climbing harness would work as a backup to be worn under the primary (TopClimber in my case)?

I called REI and they guy recommended this one because it is not bulky, but has little padding, so it'll probably hurt if it were to become primary.

Black Diamond Couloir Climbing Harness -

When questioned about a padded harness with gear loops that are not so rigid, he recommended this:
Black Diamond Momentum Climbing Harness - Men's -

Most of the padded harnesses have rigid gear loops and I don't know if they will interfere with the TopClimber harness.

Thanks for the input.
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Old 31-07-2015, 12:57   #34
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Re: Mast Climbing

Why do you want a separate harness?? The bosun's chair/harness of the Top Climber is pretty much fool proof as long as the pins don't fall out and that's really easy to make sure they don't. '

The failure that concerned me is the halyard that you are using. That is what needs a back up. Use a rope with a Prussic knot on another halyard. Used to have one back up line but then I puzzled out if the main halyard failed, the Prussic Knotted saftety line would keep me in place but needed another line if I didn't want to be a permanent mast adornment. The back up would hold but not give me a way to get down as wouldn't be able use my legs to sequentially slide the lines down. Now keep a separate line in the tool bag to use for the foot portion of the system needed for descending or ascending.
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Old 01-08-2015, 15:56   #35
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Re: Mast Climbing

Thanks Roverhi,

Yeah, I agree the TopClimber seems well built, but I just wanted a secondary harness connected to the other halyard in case the TopClimber harness failed. Both halyards are tied off and winched tight. I already use a line with prussic knot from the top climber to the second halyard and it works well, I was just looking at redundancy.

Also, once I put mast steps up (way down on bottom of my list), I'll need a non-bulky harness so I don't fall to the deck when I climb the steps.
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Old 01-08-2015, 17:06   #36
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Re: Mast Climbing

Once while being hoisted up the mast at spreader height I noticed some binding looked to see the lanyard on the quick release snap shackle caught on a bolt and about to dump me ! the thought scares me to this day So be sure to tape every thing down good!
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Old 01-08-2015, 17:08   #37
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Re: Mast Climbing

Never go up on a snap shackle, period. Tie a bowline.

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