Elevated Anchors – Setting Up For The Resultant

The use of elevated anchors, i.e. high directional anchor systems, is a mandatory requirement of NFPA 1670 for rope technicians. Having said this, it is impossible to discuss one facet of rope rigging and not address all the many other aspects at the same time. A rope system is like a living breathing thing; like any living thing it is composed of many cells and body parts. Yes; these many parts are separate components, but without a realization of the whole body each component means little. This is the essence of the knowledge base that rope rescue technicians must try to ascend to.

When we study elevated anchors, we are usually addressing the extremely complex subject of edge management. In other words how do we overcome edge trauma, and how to we maintain a coefficient of friction at the edge that best meets our needs? Furthermore, elevated anchors are just that…an anchor system. As with all anchor systems we must have a complete working knowledge of force vector analysis and resultant management. If this sounds like an overly demanding picture of years of advanced detailed study of an overwhelmingly complex subject…than good…we’ve made our point.

When approaching an unprotected edge, such as a mountain location or an industrial site that is void of hand railings or other reliable fall protection system, the elevated anchor system needs to be belayed into place using a single tagline. Once in place, leave the tagline connected to the system and tied off at a suitable anchor as a precaution against a dynamic event. A dynamic event could include any number of things like the surface of a mountain edge falling off, or even a mainline failure. Although the system belay would arrest the load, the mainline could possibly jam the high directional pulley and radically alter the resultant causing the tripod to topple over the edge onto the rescue package.

CMC Arizona Vortex 2 Multipod

TerrAdaptor Gin Pole Kit

TerrAdaptor (Artificial High Directional) Portable Anchor System

This stuff is getting very interesting.  Gear is getting smaller and we’re getting closer and closer to edge!  It used to be the edge was something to stay away from… now we’re looking for ways to put anchors at or Over The Edge… (Yes… that was a plug for our friends.  Check them out!)

By The Way…. You can see over at Rigging Lab Academy as well!

Peace on your days!

Lance

 

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RLA Cornerstone 2: Operations Foundation Level Courses Now Live

Hey all!  We’ve just completed and released the first phase of our Operations Level Foundations Course work.  Thanks so much for your patience in this.

The process of being functionally successful within a group. Understanding that nothing ever happens without community, Operations becomes of pivotal importance because it is through the team and or group that objectives are accomplished.  All teams need plan and blueprint.  Here it is.  These courses are “evergreen”… alway in transition and becoming stronger with each revision.

  • Equipment – While this course centers on equipment, I’m sure you realize we can’t really show gear “the what”, without showing “the why” and “the how”. This Equipment course will be an ever-expanding portrayal of not just gear and equipment, but gear and equipment in use. This includes various examples of equipment being properly used per manufacturer’s specifications.
  • Knot Craft – What are knots, bends, and hitches? The standard definition of a knot is a rope intertwined with itself, a bend is the intertwining of two ends of rope, and a hitch is a knot that is dependent on a host object. In the true spirit of the art of knot craft, defining knots deserves a little more than “intertwined rope!”
  • Anchors-Anchors are the most critical component of any rope rescue system. The entire rescue is in jeopardy if the anchors are not reliable. Are your anchor skills up to par?
  • Mechanical Advantage Theory – Mechanical Advantage is a measure of the force multiplication achieved by using a tool. In most cases, this involves using pulleys, but that isn’t always the case. The purpose is to show how we can achieve more work with less people AND that sometimes having more people can actually be dangerous. An overeager group of strapping young men and women on a given mechanical advantage system can yield an explosion of power, that when not desired, could actually create problems.
  • Mainline Systems – An understanding of mechanical advantage systems — in raising and lower modes — is crucial to all rope rescue technicians. Dealing with Mass and Force is aspects of consequence if not considered during operations. Working with tensioned anchor systems, guying systems, high directionals, load positioning and litter movement all come into play when building mainline systems. If these are areas of concern for you — or simply areas in your rigging and rope rescue knowledge that you’d like to strengthen — this course is for you.
  • Belay Systems – In this Rigging Lab Academy exclusive course, Belay Systems, we’re including both team and solo rescues, meaning a traditional belay as well as a lowering system. So while we don’t readily consider a belay system the same as a lower (a true belay is one of “non-tensioned” nature and with the building trend of twin or tandem tension systems on the rise), we thought it would be helpful to think in terms of today as well as tomorrow. So what does a twin tension lower have to do with a solo rescue? Both are now lowering systems and not a belay. As methods continue to evolve, so much the terms and reasoning behind them.
  • Litter Operations – “Rope based litter operations have become the hallmark of rope rescue team around the world. The moving of an injured patient over, around and through various terrain types is most often best accomplished by packaging that person in a litter. Modern litters are strong, rigid and adaptable to many applications. Teams that are serious about patient care and transport will devote a considerable amount of training time perfecting their litter based technique and operations.” – Steve Crandall
  • Personal Skills – Personal skills include, among other things, rappelling, ascending fixed lines, single body belay techniques, pick off skills, and rope management. We’ll cover most of these topics through this unique Personal Skills course. There are, however, a few like pick-offs that will be covered in more depth in other courses.

Peace on your days!

Lance

 

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What is CE All About and Really… What Does It Have To Do With Rescue and Rigging?

What is CE anyway?  Is it an abbreviation of the French phrase “Conformité Européene” which literally means “European Conformity” as in our climbing gear?  Does CE  mean “Common Era”?.. As in the Year AD 1 (Anno Domini)? Oh wait!!!!  How about CE as “continued education”?  This might really sound lame, but if you are getting my point here… CE has many meanings and rarely the same for everyone.

So long about early 2017, the concept of creating some sort of logged hours for our members began to take shape.  We knew organizations and other “bodies” were doing good job at collectively keeping their members “up to speed” with what they deemed “appropriate” education.  However, what happens with the education process someone requires something other than “in-house” training?  What happens when the education process requires (or should include) learning from other corners of technical rigging and rescue arenas and there is no “conformity standard” to go along with it?  For matter, what the heck is a conformity standard if you are looking for answers outside of your own 4 walls?  Well, this is the question I had for my team.

Educational requirements are certainly varied among our industry, to such a degree that some circles don’t actually require it (at all).  However, we live in a world of cross-pollination and education is part of that.  Beside our phone, what is The most used appliance in our lives… maybe you guessed it!… Your microwave.  You can thank NASA for that one.  Space exploration benefits a fast food lifestyle. Well, so goes with our rigging skills and requirements.  Can it be said, we too would go to the ends of the earth to grow and benefit our lives and the lives of others?

As you observed in our attached video… Rich Hattier (ISC Wales) delivers one thought actively being carried out in the field of “rope access”.  A few years ago, rope access was only an industrial microcosm of “working at height”.  Guys and gals have been climbing trees and doing work for decades and often at elevated platforms… Certainly this would/should be considered “working at height” as well.  It is getting closer, but there are old guards who don’t want this to happen… And it isn’t happening from people you’d think would be complaining (a story for another time).

The long and short of it is that we determined to build a “continued education” process for not just the individual members but also for the many fire service organizations and government agencies across North America and many parts of planet now.  Continued Education isn’t about hours accumulated, but rather a source of understanding.  So we have brought to our brothers and sisters in the “rigging and rescue” world… a place to hang-out and learn from each other AND… gain some much needed oil and lubrication for teams really needing to get a bead on their teams progress and being able to forecast where things are going in the future.

Below is an example of a cross-sectional matrix of what a roadmap could look like for a team of rescuers.  While not clearly defined in the image, industries like fire service, arbor, slacklining, mountain rescue, climbing, industrial rope access, classroom physics, tower industry, marine and many others…  Try pulling all this together under the hat of say NFPA?  You can’t and I would actually say… you shouldn’t.  Why?  Because organizations and people need elements of control to maintain continuity and health.  However, ignoring the work of others erodes this health too.  So, here we are.  You in-house Research and Development team partners.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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So where do we go from here?  Well, I am not completely sure at this point.  Reason being isn’t that we don’t have a great plan… we just are sure how the rigging community wants to employ the work of others into their own “savings account” and continue too invest into it.  It could be said it is a lot like investing into other currencies, except that investing into these currencies actually build the value of your own.  See, this savings account or investment portfolio pays huge dividends without waiting years for your return on investment (ROI).  The return is immediate.

We are developing not just a platform that keeps track of your hours and courses completed… with a Certification of Completion application, but also developing an entire Group/Community Corner so teams can talk amongst themselves or be a part of a larger conversation with others.  By the way… any Certification of Completion simply certifies you have successfully completed your course…

Many  agencies and or organizations have what is know as Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ)… There are other who have protocols and these might be known as JPRs (Job Performance Requirements).  You fire department guys would know this through the NFPA 1670 and 1006 process.  It would be up to the AHJ (the person in charge) to determine what is and or isn’t included in the CE process.  I know this a lot to take in, but all good things take time simmer, process and redefine.  We are in this for the long haul and working this for you guys is well worth the effort.

Thanks for being a part of the dreams and vision of an old guy trying to stay young for as long as possible.

As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!

Peace on your days…
Lance

The Price of Rigging Lab Academy Increases This Friday At Midnight!

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Friction and Resultants… How Come We Don’t Fall Down When We Walk?

Hey all,

I want to preface that before we dive into this stuff on resultants, friction and direction of vector forces… this is tough stuff.  The reason I am bringing this out in the open,  is because it is critically important to understand.  Not just slightly important, but critically important!  Why?  The very ground you walk on and the balancing act you perform with every step, falls 100% inline (pun intended) with what we are going to be going through.  No one “really” contemplates vector angles, friction, resultants and such with every step or bounding leap (during a run) do they?  Well, (admittedly) I do sometimes… but then again, I am a bit of an “odd bird” at times.  But really, few do.  And it is because of this, we need to understand why we don’t fall down when we are about “locomotion”.

Our bodies are created fearfully and wonderfully.  We have automatic feedback systems with virtually everything we do.  Visually, tactically and kinesthetically… we move through space with (mostly) the greatest of ease.  Our mind, body, soul and spirit direct and reflect our thoughts, intentions and actions.  So when we must think for ourselves, such as what we are about to jump into, it isn’t automatic for us.  We need to process it.. touch, feel, see and… understand.

So when does a resultant not follow the normal rules of bifurcating two “components” thereby making a new force vector or vector angle?  Give up?  Or come one!  Everyone knows that when a haul line is directly attached to  (say) a gin pole via a winch… the resultant runs right down the monopod.  No?  Well, for the longest time… I didn’t either.  Not only that, it confused me as to why.  Well, like in so many other examples, Rich Delaney explains (in simple terms) why this is so.

The frame mounted winch along with the opposing compression and tension elements on the frame actually cancel each other out. Suppose the haulers are in exact alignment with winch… ?  Would you still have the same resultant as if the winch was doing the haul (while attached to the leg of the high directional)?  Nope!  At this point the resultant would follow the “normal” line of splitting the load line (component 1) and haul line (component 2).

What about friction, quality of rope, properties of pulleys, capstan equation and resultants?  These all come into play when we set up systems such as one using an article or natural hight directional.  So settle in with some coffee or tea and have a go with Rich and his thoughts…  Eye opening for sure!!!!

 

Products Discussed in the Video…

As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!

Peace on your days…

 

Lance

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Elements of Rigging – Understanding Resultants – A Case Study

As we found during our T Method conversations, there are numerous Ts… T1, T2 ect…  The same applies to understanding resultants. Each line that intersects with a pulley or change of direction, is considered a component (C1, C2 ect…).  When one component meets another, an angle is formed.  This new angle has it’s own magnitude of force and a new direction.  This determines “a degree of angle”…which then corresponds to what is called a “Resultant”.  For more on this topic… Go to Elements of Rigging at Rigging Lab Academy.com

When two components come together we have now created an angle. The resultant is the force vector that is created by the joining of these two components.

To determine the resultant draw a parallelogram from the given angle. Than draw a new line (component) from the original angle (resultant) to its opposite angle of the parallelogram. By comparing the length of the resultant component to the components of the angle, we can easily see which component of this system is producing the greatest force simply by determining, which is the longest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When components of rope go through a pulley, the pulley equalizes the components of rope and renders them equal. The resultant (in this case, the pulley) will always seek the location halfway between the two rope components.

The center of any tensioned pulley will always point to the exact location and direction of the resultant force at work on the associated anchor.

Again, the resultant of any pulley will find the middle point between the legs of rope going in and coming out of the pulley. The use of the parallelogram still works well in determining the resultant force, its direction and magnitude.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!

Peace on your days…

 

Lance

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Staggering Your Rigging Anchors Increases Efficiency But At What Cost?

Staggering rigging anchors is a perfect way to spread the mechanical advantage system over a broad area, while at the same time, using the area very efficiently.  The goal is to get as much “throw” as possible and to limit resets.   There are numerous ways to do this and these are only two of the many.  Ultimately the process includes a Change of Direction (CD).

A Change of Direction pulley would normally be fixed at a primary anchor and added between the input force and the mechanical advantage system.  Splitting the systems creates a compound systems and thus multiplies the two mechanical advantage systems.  Rarely would a team employ a system such as this when there are numerous haulers… This can be analogous to throwing gas on a fire… Don’t do it!  With systems like this… less is more.

Remove as much friction in the system as possible before implementing any compound mechanical advantage system.  Also remember that while gaining “power”, resets become an issue, so by staggering the anchors properly you can mindfully calculate the resets (both from and back) so they are sync’d.

Just a note… both of these system are variations of a progression ending in a 9:1 mechanical advantage pulley system.

For more on these systems and other systems like them, visit Rigging Lab Academy today.

As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!

Peace on your days…

 

Lance

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Arbor VS Industry: A 2 Rope or Twin Rope System Comparison

In a very fun shoot, we met up with Rich Hattier of ISC.  Rich is not just one of the best technical riggers I have met, but one super nice guy as well.  Our shoot was scheduled to discussed the upward and downward mobility of arborists, but also look into the transitory elements of what industrial access athletes can pull from the arbor professional athletes. What we found is that both industries pull from each other and may actually not even know it.

In standard rope access system, a two rope system is always used.  Both are on known anchors.  The ascent and descent modes are not in question, however if in the case of a problem with the mainline, the technician must first rely on first, the back up systems, and then… move to a change over self-rescue mode of ascent or descent.

In the case of the a 2 rope or twin rope system, the climber or technician is always on primary ropes…. There isn’t a designated main/belay or main/safety line as they are both “main” or primary.  There is no backup.  So.. if something were to happen with one, the mirrored system continues to progress on… whether ascend or descend.

 

And what about rescue?  We’ll get into this in another video.

We’ll talk about pros and cons in our video below.

 

Products in use in this video are…

  1. ISC RED Back-Up Device
  2.  ISC Chest Ascender
  3.  ISC Ultrasafe Hand Ascender
  4.  ISC D4 Work Rescue Descender
  5.  At-Height DOUBLE LEG STIFF TETHER FOR ROPE WRENCH ZK-2
  6.  ISC Singing Tree Rope Wrench

As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!

Peace on your days…

 

Lance

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What is a Roadmap and Why is it Important?

A roadmap tells a story. More specifically a roadmap is a storyboard that if designed correctly, builds the components of a great account of something (the story).  They often use illustrations, images or video, and when sequenced together, builds the framework of what needs to be told.  Rigging Lab Academy wants to be a part of telling your story.  And like all stories, there are stories within stories.  Tales of adventure and intrigue that lead us in or lead us out of the account we are in.  Our own story will always intersect with another and that meeting begets another story.

We want your journey to be like fine wine… tons of notes,  great structure and big!  We too are on a similar path.  As great as our course development has been, our advisory committed determined we missed the boat on something.  Nobody ever leaves the tarmac or harbor without a flight plan or float plan.  No builder ever constructs anything without a blueprint.  Navigation is essential to our lives… So how did we miss this?  Well, we did and we have made the correction!

A roadmap addresses the following…

  1. Who we are.
  2. The main challenge we face.
  3. Guidelines and the plan we need to get past the challenge we are facing.
  4. Taking ownership of the struggle and doing what needs to be done to correct it.
  5. Our decision making process.
  6. What things look like if we succeed.
  7. What things look like if we fail.

The Master's Roadmap Overview

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We have heard it said that “failure is not an option”.  Well, let it be known… there are very very few circumstances where the tolerances are so tight that one glitch destroys the entire operation. Space operations and NASA, Chromosomal defects and foolish behavior are ones that come to mind first.  So let’s concentrate on only those elements in our lives that we can control.  In this, there is rarely, if ever, failure.  So here… failure is simply not carrying out the objectives and thus doomed to a life of unfulfilled visions and hopes.

However, the success bucket looks exceedingly bright and chains are released.  Sounds like a movie… Well, it should.  It’s what we are here for and this is part of what your calling is.  Do you see yourself rigging lines, offsets, dynamic directionals, twin tension systems with only a moments notice that something is needing to get done!  Have you been called to a higher position in training and not quite sure how to fill these new boots you are expected to fill?… We got you covered!

The Masters Roadmap is not about the beginning, intermediate or advanced levels. It’s about shoring up loose ends, removing rubble, and getting a solid foundation. You are a master or you wouldn’t be here. You have control over your own decisions. You have a huge list of talents and determining how to parlay those talents into strengths is what makes you a master. Masters don’t look for the easy path as there is nothing easy about saving lives and leading people.

The Master's Roadmap Overview

Watch Part 1 of the 3 part FREE video series on Rigging Lab's new Master's Roadmap. Leverage your learning styles with a proven framework to expand your rigging knowledge & skills!

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Dedicated to everyone who risks their lives to rescue those in need!
As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!
Peace on your days…
Lance

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Transformation, Opportunity and Learning Styles

So in the last blog, I talked a bit about the challenging aspect of how best to train.  We all know that plans are great, but if not followed, they’re pretty much worthless.  However, a plan or roadmap that is spelled out, tracked and implemented… is a pathway to success.  I want to reveal a bit more about this path… It is called the Masters Roadmap.

Everyone on this planet learns by at least one of three ways.  The first is Auditory, the second is Visual, and the third is Kinesthetic. Most people say they learn by doing. Well, data shows that 30% of us are auditory learners. 65% of us are visual learners and only 5% of us are kinesthetic learners (meaning we only learn by doing).  The reality is… we all learn best, when using all three learning methods and our goal is to prepare you well, so your field training (which is your kinesthetic method of learning) is awesome. 

So now we know that the Rigging Lab Academy Masters Roadmap will cover 95% of how we learn, let’s talk about Why this is so.  First, let me touch base on the Why the need for a roadmap is so important.  Objectives!

Objectives are not just goals. A goal is a broad primary outcome. A strategy is an approach you take to achieve a goal. An objective is a measurable step you take to achieve a strategy. A tactic is a tool you use in pursuing an objective associated with a strategy.  So in other words, an objective is the action and measurable data used to achieve a goal.  They are not the same. Objectives are the underlayment of your intent (or goal).

Our Masters Roadmap creates a one of kind template that matches your vision, your goals and objectives… all under one roof.  I believe a huge contributing factor in not achieving our best is the lack of objectives…  Straightforward, yes or no feedback.

The Master's Roadmap Overview

Watch Part 1 of the 3 part FREE video series on Rigging Lab's new Master's Roadmap. Leverage your learning styles with a proven framework to expand your rigging knowledge & skills!

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Over many years, I’ve spent countless hours asking our industry’s thoughts leaders questions like…

  • “What is needed to make our training programs better and what is missing?”
  • “How do we build a better vision for the future”?

The answer I got was to have a plan… a roadmap for people and teams to follow.  Research and Development (R&D) are the foundations for all quality and dynamic programs. This R&D serves your Instructors, who are training others at above a Rescue Level requirement. So let it be known that Rigging Lab Academy is, in fact, part of your Research and Development Team. We are working for your success.

In short, we have developed opening courses (Awareness, Operations, and Technician) that when completed, segway into specified modules… designed and geared to one particular topic or purpose. When joined together, the collective outcome is the completion of your goal… through objectives you set.  Now, let it be said and let it be known… we ourselves are too on a mission to build the most cohesive academic library of rigging and rescue collateral known to man!  We are following our own advice and have set forth not just goals, but objectives.  Some of which will take time to form and complete.  Thus, we are in an 18-month process, however, we also know our job will never be fully completed.  Things change rapidly in our world and finding newer and better ways to accomplish things will always keep us hopping.  That means fresh and innovative content will always be awaiting your arrival.

Dedicated to everyone who risks their lives to rescue those in need!
As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!
Peace on your days…
Lance

The Master's Roadmap Overview

Watch Part 1 of the 3 part FREE video series on Rigging Lab's new Master's Roadmap. Leverage your learning styles with a proven framework to expand your rigging knowledge & skills!

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Building Blocks of Technical Rescue- 4 Step Process

Each block of the graph represents those things that are instrumental in performing a successful technical rescue. These blocks include personnel, equipment, training, and leadership. Each level is supported by the larger and more substantial level immediately below. The Rescue Level is supported by training level blocks that are more extensive and demanding higher skills. The Training Level is supported by the instructor level. Conversely, these instructors must be held to a higher level of understanding and performance than what is required at the training level. The Instructor Level is reliant on continual input and support from the Research and Development Level. Each level drives and influences the other levels. Indeed, this profession is never stagnant, it is always changing. Our calling should be to ride this wave of evolution and become the best technical rescuers possible.

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Training For The Unexpected starts with your Research and Development team.  Setting your standard operation procedures never just happens.  Getting these things started is a pain and incredibly frustrating.  However, it must happen and researching your purpose, knowing the goals and techniques and developing a team around them is Job #1.  Nothing happens without this.
  2. Equip For the Unplanned begins with knowing what is priority and what isn’t.  Priority means Only!  Priority is a singular word and was never intended to be plural.  You can not have multiple priorities…  Equipping a team goes way past just buying implementing the gear or equipment. That said… Instructing is where the rubber meets the road.  A team will never move past existing leadership and instruction.
  3. Prepare for the unknown is the training level.  Always train above the call of duty.  Surprises happen!  The more tools in the toolbox, but the better off you’ll.  NOTE.. expand the use of your tool before you expand the tool selection.
  4. Rescuing the unfortunate is what makes the news.  Remember, at some point in your life, you will need to be rescued.  Life Is As Life Does and the conflict between Is and Does will always lend itself to misfortune.  Preparedness is about the cycle of learning and process. Rescue level is the level of all other preceding levels combined.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dedicated to everyone who risks their lives to rescue those in need!

As always… rig safely and once the foundations are understood… be creative!

Peace on your days…

Lance

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