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Information - Recommendation: steel cable caving ladder

Discussion in 'Kit / Clothing / Equipment' started by johnsalomon, Aug 15, 2012.

  1. johnsalomon

    johnsalomon Germany is the "wurst"
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    Ohai thar,

    for anyone who descends into stuff, I can only recommend in the warmest possible terms buying a steel caving ladder.

    I have one of these:

    [​IMG]

    They usually come in 5m or 10m, with full and half width - I have the half width 10m (lighter for the length, if a bit fidgety to climb). It is _awesome_.

    They're expensive as hell because they are apparently hand made by blind Bhutanese elf-monks out of fairy poo and meteor dust, but so far it's gotten me into

    - an underground freight rail station, descending about 8m (including 5m free hanging climb) down a ventilation shaft
    - a WW2 V2 rocket storage bunker, past a steep wall that the locals had seen fit to paint with sticky horrid black anti-climb grease
    - a heating plant where the only way down was a several-meter drop into a light well from sidewalk level
    - a coal mine, descending into a broken 2nd story window from the roof
    - a WW2 air raid bunker through a hole where the ventilation chimney had been ripped off, about 5m down to the stairs below

    These things are versatile, compact, light, super duper rugged. If you can pick one up, do it do it do it.
     

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  2. Landsker

    Landsker The Rock Man
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    Very handy, but bloody awkward at times!
     
  3. johnsalomon

    johnsalomon Germany is the "wurst"
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    Meh, I have a separate satchel to carry it in; you get pretty good at rolling it up quickly when you're done.

    They unroll very quickly, and what's also good is that you can attach them at the bottom using the carabiners to avoid some shitwit stealing them (they can still undo them but hey, them's the breaks.)
     
  4. Landsker

    Landsker The Rock Man
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    Awkward to climb I meant, they do roll up nice and small to be fair.
     
  5. johnsalomon

    johnsalomon Germany is the "wurst"
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    Ah. You're doing it wrong then, I know what you mean. You can't climb it like a regular ladder, you have to do it with your feet pointing towards each other (so each step coming into the ladder from opposing sides) - at least when it's hanging free. It takes a bit of getting used to but it will swing forward a lot less like that.
     
  6. Landsker

    Landsker The Rock Man
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    Bit harder when its up against an uneven mineshaft!
     
  7. johnsalomon

    johnsalomon Germany is the "wurst"
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    (I'm not trying to give you a hard time, I'm just dead curious to understand what it is you are doing that is causing you so much trouble! :D)

    But is it then lying against something, e.g. a diagonal wall? Should be piss easy then, since you just pull it off the surface it's lying against very lightly and step into the rungs, then climb it like a normal ladder...
     
  8. Speed

    Speed Got Epic?
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    Disagree. For general UE use your much better of with a fibrelite. Bought mine about 4 years ago. Used it loads of times (and to do some of the most epic stuff ive ever done!) £90 original cost has paid for its self a million times over. 5m long and folds so small you hardly notice you have it, much lighter and easy to handle than the wire ladders and its even black for stealthly use! (yes this does matter for some things ive used it for!)

    The wire ladders are ok bits of kit but dont see the point unliss your going caving somewhere a fibrelite would get cut to shreads!
     
  9. johnsalomon

    johnsalomon Germany is the "wurst"
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    That's because you're not a fat fuk like me. I would crush your girlie rope ladder like wet newspaper.
     
  10. Contour

    Contour 28DL Full Member
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    johnsalomon, what's the specific name of yours? I've been looking around for a suitable caving ladder and you seem happily avid with yours.
     
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