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The cinch from trango !Dangerous!
OffLine Ben Oveson
  2007-06-27 06:46:07    
I just got droped 30 ft into a river and my belayer using the cinch did not catch me, or slow me down. Just letting others know that the cinch is offically not an autolocking device and not to buy it. If you do treat it like an ATC, and never take your hand off the breaking end. If anyone else has heard of problems with it let me know.
OffLine Josh Vale
  2007-07-07 05:09:21    

Dude, you should always keep your hand on the breaking end of the rope whether the device is deemed "autolocking" or not.  The same accident can happen with grigri or any other device.

OffLine Noah Duncan
  2007-07-10 01:32:25    
I have used the cinch just once and my experience was similar, the mechanism is much less forgiving than other autolocking belay devices.  I was lowering a friend on the cinch, I kept my hand on the brake while releasing the lock on the cinch however the rope still slid through my hand and basically tore off the majority of my skin on my middle two fingers.  I only dropped my friend about 6 to 8 feet before i had the thought to release the lever, however this experience taught me two things, I do not fully trust the cinch's lowering abilities, and second always put in a directional when lowering (he was lowering straight off the cinch which was direct to an anchor.
OffLine Ben Lindfors
  2010-07-20 06:40:13    
Never had a problem with it. Feeds out slack great and has always caught. Also I second that you should never take your brake hand off no matter what device you use.
OffLine Logan Jauernigg
  2010-07-23 06:06:04    
ive never had a problem with it either, as long as you keep your brake hand on the rope and dont put your hand all the way around the device its all good
OffLine Chris Hill
  2010-08-10 21:42:36    
I love my cinch for lead belaying; it's much easier to feed rope out than a GriGri, and it definitely does work as an autolocking device, given the rope is thick enough and not brand new (problems that also exist with the GriGri).

The cinch is definitely finicky for lowering, and sucks for single-rope raps. Also, just as with any other autolocker, if the belayer holds it open then it's totally worthless...it seems this type of thing has happened several times recently, resulting in some very unfortunate accidents.

Always keep a brake hand on the rope, and never hold the autolocking device open!
OffLine Tye Watkins
  2010-08-18 20:00:55    
I have used the Cinch for ~6 years with absolutely no issue. Ever.

@Ben

If you are getting dropped, then get a new belayer. There is NO excuse for that, especially using the Cinch. The device works perfectly fine when used correctly, as an aid in belaying.  The Cinch is NOT AT ALL DANGEROUS. Your belayer is an idiot, and you're a close minded fool to be suggesting that the device is what caused your fall.

Treat it just like an ATC, and you will never have an issue. Abusing these devices is what leads to injury and death.

Also, if you yank down on the lever and do not have the rope properly locked down by your hip in brake position, of course it's going to come through very fast. This is obvious and common sense.

If you're not intelligent enough to use an Autolocking device correctly, then stick with the ATC.  Things like this reaffirm my observation that a large part of the climbing community belay improperly.

Get classes at your local gym, look things up online, or find better partners if you are belaying with some retarded method.
OffLine Misty Murphy(f)
  2010-09-23 06:25:31    
I have heard of two major incidences with the Cinch where the climber got dropped to the ground from experienced belayers, one of which there was a spinal injury.  I would use caution in the least, if not just buy a Gri Gri instead.
OffLine Peter Chasse
  2010-09-30 05:41:33    
If the Cinch is used properly the brake hand never needs to come off the rope, also you never have to disable the locking mechanism to feed slack unlike the Gri Gri. This device can feed slack much faster and safer than a Gri Gri. I've been using a Gri Gri for nearly 20 years and have recently switched to the Cinch. I was also not using it properly until I ran across a video on YouTube of Malcom Daly demonstrating it's proper use. Bottom line  Operator Error!
OffLine Jeff A
  2010-10-11 19:08:26    
It's not that I think the Cinch is dangerous, but I feel more in control with the Gri-Gri. Have your belayer use what they feel comfortable with instead of forcing them to use a certain device that you feel comfortable with, or climb with someone else. I don't think your belayer is an idiot, but he/she was not versed in the device. The device is nice for feeding out rope, and for using smaller diameter ropes. Lowering can be a pain if you do not watch the Trango video, because it's not at all intuitive to grab the lowering handle with your opposite hand and twist the device (once you figure this out it's nice, but I still had to watch a video after my climber was almost stuck when I tried to lower him off a route).

How the device works:
If you watch the Trango video and belay accordingly you absolutely have to un-cam the device to feed out rope. You are placing your thumb on the top pivot point and your first finger on the opposite side of the pivot point to feed out rope and un-camming the device. If you look carefully at the device while doing so the rope is in a straight line while you are feeding out rope (this is why the device feeds out rope so easily). This is impossible with an ATC because the rope is not in a straight line, and is difficult for a rope in a Gri-Gri to be in a straight line because the rope feeds down and around the track in a Gri-Gri and around a carabiner with an ATC. While feeding out rope your brake hand is reduced to your braking fingers (note: three fingers for some, and two fingers for others), or the device will autolock. This means that your middle, ring, and pinky fingers are the only fingers placed on the rope while feeding out slack with your other hand. If you have larger hands like me the first finger is not comfortable so I'm reduced to using the ring and pinky fingers left on the brake hand. With my hands this leaves a gap over the rope because I cannot fully squeeze the pinky and ring finger around the rope.

Most climbers have decked when their belayer was not paying attention while they were feeding out rope to make a clip and they're climber falls while clipping (this is how I broke my back in the gym and my belayer was using the Black Diamond ATC-XP). I see this all the time in my gym. They are too interested in who's climbing around them, getting beta off a route they want to do next to them by watching other people climb it, the music is too loud for communication, or they were distracted by the opposite sex. You said you fell in a river so maybe your belayer was checking out some girl in a bikini, or some European dude in a Speedo (was that a sterotype?). 

So how does this actually happen with an autolocking device? It's not necessarily because your brake hand was on, or off the rope. Your brake hand could have been on the rope the entire time. It's because the rope feeding hand was STILL on the rope when you fell. If this happens you are preventing the device to not autolock. When someone falls especially with a Cinch you have to let go of your feeding hand and quickly slide your brake hand into the braking position, or your climber will deck. If someone was to fall while you were feeding them out rope their first instinct with a Cinch would be to clamp down on both the brake hand and feeding hand, but since your feeding hand is above the device you will prevent the device from autolocking and it doesn't matter where your brake hand is at that point. The forces generated from a fall will happen too quickly at that point.

Two things are going to happen:
1) The belayer has just melted the skin on their rope feeding hand. Once this happens, and it happens extremely quick you are useless as a belayer and at that point you cannot hold the rope tight enough because you are in too much pain. Imagine touching a hot stove and pulling your hand away instantly. You have just let go of the rope and device entirely.
2) As a result of this you have just dropped your belayer. Resulting in no injuries, minor injuries (ankle, leg), major injuries (crushed spine, major foot/ankle), or you have just killed the climber.

Whatever the outcome no one will ever trust the belayer again. If the fallen climber was lucky enough to be able to climb again(either immediately, or in the future) you have completely destroyed their trust in their future belayers ability to be catch them if they were to take another fall.
OffLine Angel Durán
  2011-09-29 12:55:42    
Hello.

I am a Spanish climber. I sought more information about the alleged failures cinch and I found this forum.

I performed tests of CINCH and I found the suspected cause of accidents.

The locking mechanism is very sensitive, and it is very easy to disable it, unconsciously. So much easier than the GRIGRI even easier than non-auto devices like the REVERSO.

It is likely that in the accidents described the belayer was unconsciously touching the CINCH. Touching not pressing.

Just as in a vehicle you look at their safety, not only in its power, we must do the same with climbing equipment. In a vehicle the driver can not leave the road, in climbing the belayer must carefully manage the climbing device. As in this case I prefer to be taken by car instead on a motorcycle.

The CINCH is the bike.

We are humans and accidents happens, I fall more than 400 times a year. A 99.99% efficiency means an injury. This time was an ankle, I won't give a second try to the CINCH, mine is for sale.
  
OffLine Todd McCormick
  2011-10-15 06:22:05    
You are wrong.

I'd buy your cinch. I too have done testing on the Cinch and on the GriGri. I've used a Cinch for 4 years without any issues at all. You just need to know how to properly use it. There are plenty of accidents with the Cinch, there are just as many with the GriGri, and if you search you can find documented accidents with other devices as well (including ATC's). Bottom line, you need to know how to use a device before you start using it! I see improper use of the GriGri all the time... it kills people, literally. I try to educate whenever I can, but accidents won't stop happening until belayers take their job seriously and learn how to use a device before using it! Personally, I like the Cinch better than the GriGri because with proper use you can more easily feed slack to a climber without blocking the camming mechanism. I also don't have any issues lowering a climber with my Cinch, but again, I know how to properly use it. It's a great device. Another device that I prefer over the GriGri is the Sum by FADERS. I prefer the Sum for the same reason that I prefer a Cinch, you can more easily feed slack to a climber without blocking the cam. I have a GriGri too, and I use it frequently, but it's my least favorite of the "locking assist" devices. Never go hands free. Learn how to proper use your belay "tool" and climb safe. Cheers!