With so many new pieces of climbing gear coming out in the past year it’s hard to stay on top of all the innovative products that companies and individuals are producing. Bartlett Arborist Supply tries to stay on top of every new development and we are always excited to bring you something completely revolutionary to the arborist industry!
Kevin Bingham of Detroit, Michigan invented the Rope Wrench a couple years ago and it completely changed the way that we climb trees. Instead of body thrusting to access the tree or ascending SRT to then switch over at the tie in point, Kevin developed a device that allowed us to ascend and work position on a single line! This allows the climber to redirect wherever they feel the need as we discussed earlier in the SRT Redirects post. To be able to ascend the tree efficiently with ascenders and immediately work was a major game changer!
Now, Kevin has gone back to the drawing board and invented the Rope Runner. This device allows the climber to ascend and work position off of a singular mechanical device. The Rope Runner moves over the rope almost frictionlessly and descends with pinpoint accuracy. The Rope Wrench needed to be paired up with some sort of friction hitch where the Rope Runner can run all by itself over the rope. Where the Rope Wrench really lacked was limb walking because it created so much friction while it bent the rope. The Rope Runner, on the other hand, does not bend the rope so limb walks can be done without any friction.
The Rope Runner, at first glance, can be a bit daunting to understand how it is attached to the rope. By attaching the upper portion (called the bird) the Rope Runner can hang from the rope making it much easier to assemble the rest of the device. Every piece is labelled making the assembly much easier. This is one device that you will want to be sure to use low and slow first!
By gently pulling down on the “bird” the device moves easily down the rope. The upper bollard is adjustable to handle different diameter ropes. The recommended rope for the Rope Runner is Rocket Line and Cherry Bomb from All Gear but I find that Escalator from New England / Teufelberger Ropes handles the best. Escalator is a super hard rope and I think that helps with handling on the Rope Runner.
Be sure to check out this awesome new device or come into the shop to try one out!