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What the hell is a 'pegbolt'

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 Hardonicus 29 Nov 2022

I consider myself to be fairly switched on and integrated into climbing culture, though I don't climb much at the minute. Recently, there have been a couple of threads on 'pegbolts'. I have some questions:

1) When did this term come into existence - I've never come across it. I assume it replaces what we might have once called a 'drilled peg' or 'cemented-in peg'.

2) How are these any different to a bolt - except in the some trivial aesthetic sense ?

3) What is the lifespan of a pegbolt vs a real bolt vs a hammered in peg. I google 'peg bolts' and nothing comes back. Is the metallurgy as advanced as it is for modern bolts?

4) What is the typical lifespan of a 'pegbolt' in a seacliff context, is it removable/replaceable in the same location?

5) The fact we are discussing 'pegbolts' as having ANY meaningful difference to 'bolts' means that we are in fact some way beyond the thin end of the wedge are we not?

Post edited at 09:55
2
 Si Witcher 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

Hi, here are some useful background BMC Cymru North Wales links:

1.BMC Cymru North Wales Fixed Gear advice and guideline from June '21, including reference to eco-pegs aka pegbolts:

https://community.thebmc.co.uk/GetFile.ashx?did=3584

2.BMC video including overview of eco-pegs aka pegbolts (skip to 4min 20secs):

youtube.com/watch?v=yX0apNzic0E&

3. Agenda, docs and minutes from the Oct '22 Area Meeting:

https://community.thebmc.co.uk/Event.aspx?id=4419

Wade through that lot and you'll be up to speed!

Post edited at 10:05
 jkarran 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

> I consider myself to be fairly switched on and integrated into climbing culture, though I don't climb much at the minute. Recently, there have been a couple of threads on 'pegbolts'. I have some questions:

> 1) When did this term come into existence - I've never come across it. I assume it replaces what we might have once called a 'drilled peg' or 'cemented-in peg'.

Like you I wondered but cynically assumed it's just a bolt to replace an old peg, one given a shiny new name to differentiate it from other types of retrobolting.

jk

 jimtitt 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

They are pitons designed to replace old or broken pitons (which may need to be drilled out) which use resin mortar to keep them in place. Their lifespan should be the same as a conventional 316 stainless steel resin bolt. Ignore the first reply, it is completely wrong.

Post edited at 10:46
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 henwardian 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jkarran:

> Like you I wondered but cynically assumed it's just a bolt to replace an old peg, one given a shiny new name to differentiate it from other types of retrobolting.

...and turned out to be entirely right, as far as I can discern from that youtube video. If you're going to drill a hole for it, sorry, "enhance the crack/pocket with a jackhammer", and you're going to glue it into the rock, you might as well just place an inox glue-in and be done with it.

Is it safe to assume the 4.5 billion post long threadnaught is just a retreading of the entire retrobolting debate that has been repeated ad-nauseum over the last few hundred years?

(I'd never heard of a pegbolt before today either)

 Rick Graham 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jimtitt:

Over the last few years, the term pegbolt refers to   pitons designed to replace old or broken pitons (which may need to be drilled out) which use resin mortar to keep them in place. Their lifespan should be the same as a conventional 316 stainless steel resin bolt.

Ignore the first reply, it is completely wrong. Unfair to cog. From approximately the 60s until a few years ago, piton bolts and peg bolts  was used to describe manufactured and home made anchors that could be placed in a drilled hole as illustrated in the link.

Edited a bit

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 Graeme Hammond 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

there are some pictures on the UKB thread of some in place (search if you want to find thread) but here is a couple of direct links:

https://i.imgur.com/iQzn2kt.jpg

https://imgur.com/zHX63yR

If the follow links works they look like this when unplaced:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/14KgXgtI0UZvgJHF_Kd6egFw5RxeZiuZ1/view?usp=drivesdk

As you can see they are not like a normal peg that can be hammered in, they require a natural crack or more likely a drilled hole to be place and then need to be glued in (the barbs/notches on the metal increase pull out strength) exactly like a glue in bolt would be hence they are a bolt in all but appearance and therefore called a "pegbolt" or to many just a bolt.

Post edited at 11:20
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 Andy Moles 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

I've proposed the middle ground name of P Bolt with the intent to remove the impression that these are pegs in anything but superficial appearance (but still to distinguish them from other types of bolt, as they have mostly been deployed in a specific way). They also happen to be P shaped.

However, pegbolt seems to have stuck.

1
 Fellover 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

I've attached a screenshot showing the PBolts from the BMC vid that Si Witcher linked. (Pegs as part of 'Fixed Gear: General Advice and Guidance for North Wales, Appendix 9.',  youtube.com/watch?v=yX0apNzic0E&)

In my opinion they're clearly not pegs. The only peg like bit is the head, which sort of looks like the head of a peg. There's no taper on them so I reckon you'd be pretty sad if you just tried to hammer one into a crack, unless you were very lucky with the crack.

They look much more like a glue in bolt, which imo is what they are. The notches are (I believe) for getting a better bond with the resin.


 Brown 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jimtitt:

I think you are being a bit harsh and the pegbolts are just the most modern version of a piton that requires a drill to place and sit well in that family along with the desert "drilled angle pegs".

The semantics of what is a piton and what is a bolt are ambiguous but:

  • as soon as you are able to place it anywhere, i'd say you have crossed a significant line between a peg and a bolt. (murder of the impossible)
  • if you have to drill a hole its a bolt
  • if you have to glue it in its a bolt

Making a metal device with the shape of a traditional pitons head, having to drill a hole because the metal cannot withstand being driven in using a hammer, and having to glue it in surely makes this a bolt.

Use of a traditional piton head and the name ecopeg just allows people to deceive both themselves and others.  

 Fellover 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Andy Moles:

I think that the term pegbolt is extremely misleading, though less so than eco-peg! Pegbolt just makes them sound like a really bomber peg. It just adds to the whole feel of misinformation around them.

PBolt is a better name in my opinion, but pegbolt does seem to have stuck.

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 Fellover 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jimtitt:

> They are pitons designed to replace old or broken pitons (which may need to be drilled out) which use resin mortar to keep them in place. Their lifespan should be the same as a conventional 316 stainless steel resin bolt.

A bit semantic maybe, but to me a piton is distinct from a bolt and these PBolts are bolts, not pitons. If they're typically placed by drilling and gluing, which these PBolts are, they're a bolt. If they're typically placed with by hammering or placing into a crack/pocket/fissure of some kind with no drilling or gluing or cementing involved, then they're a piton.

Glued/cemented pitons are a grey area, but typically that would refer to gluing/cementing in place a piton which would normally be placed by hammering. At least, that's my understanding.

1
 JimR 29 Nov 2022

I wonder if we should ask Prince William that question? Dons coat and leaves!

 DannyC 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Si Witcher:

That BMC video is a very useful and interesting summary for those new to the issue (like me).

Do you know who is speaking? It doesn't say on the video or in the accompanying document. 

 Si Witcher 29 Nov 2022
In reply to DannyC:

Chris Parkin provides the video commentary. This was one of the inputs to the discussion facilitated by the BMC that eventually led to the updated Fixed Gear Advice and Guidance doc in '21, as linked above.

 jimtitt 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Fellover:

> A bit semantic maybe, but to me a piton is distinct from a bolt and these PBolts are bolts, not pitons. If they're typically placed by drilling and gluing, which these PBolts are, they're a bolt. If they're typically placed with by hammering or placing into a crack/pocket/fissure of some kind with no drilling or gluing or cementing involved, then they're a piton.

> Glued/cemented pitons are a grey area, but typically that would refer to gluing/cementing in place a piton which would normally be placed by hammering. At least, that's my understanding.

Since you quoted I presume you did read the fourth word? Where or how people are placing them now was not the original intention according then to the designer.

Had  conventional stainless pitons been available then they would have been modified instead to be more effective using resin, they weren't so this was their solution. The main problem is that if one wishes to use the original placement it is often nescessary to drill the old piton which leaves a parallel-sided hole making conventional pitons even more dubious than normal.

 Jon Ratcliffe 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jimtitt:

Hey Jim, are these pegbolts tested with repeated falls at all? 

IE, Will the squared off shape of these affect their strength if repeatedly fallen on when compared to a similar diameter round profile bolt? 

 jkarran 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jimtitt:

> Since you quoted I presume you did read the fourth word? Where or how people are placing them now was not the original intention according then to the designer.

> Had  conventional stainless pitons been available then they would have been modified instead to be more effective using resin, they weren't so this was their solution. The main problem is that if one wishes to use the original placement it is often nescessary to drill the old piton which leaves a parallel-sided hole making conventional pitons even more dubious than normal.

Is anyone really drilling old pegs out? What drill that will cut through 2-3" of tough steel and rock simultaneously? Surely most old pegs just get rusted/snapped off and a hole drilled in the crack alongside in which case this P-bolt thing is about no more than peg-like aesthetics. IMO if a bolt is to go in* it shouldn't it be going into cracked/weakened rock where you might put a peg but into the best rock local to the old peg. If it's going to be solid, make it solid and call it a bolt.

*I'm ambivalent, I could be swayed either way on a case by case basis.

jk

Post edited at 14:24
 jimtitt 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Jon Ratcliffe:

No idea, I only saw a prototype and none of the standards at that time called for repeat load testing (the current bolt standard requirement is anyway laughably low).

Looking at how bolt hangers are made I doubt the shape makes any difference.

 jimtitt 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jkarran:

I've no idea, I've never seen one installed or a piton drilled out.

In my day ones second removed pitons so the next party got the full grade experience not a clip-up. Which is of course the nub of the whole discussion.

In reply to Andy Moles:

> I've proposed the middle ground name of P Bolt with the intent to remove the impression that these are pegs in anything but superficial appearance 

How about W Bolt as I look at them before they're placed and think "that looks like a warthog".  

3
 Fellover 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jimtitt:

I did read the word designed, don't think it really makes any difference to my point, they're being used by being glued in place, which is how they were designed to be used according to the text I quoted.

> They are pitons designed to replace old or broken pitons (which may need to be drilled out) which use resin mortar to keep them in place.

If they are designed to require the use of resin mortar (basically glue) to keep them in place then to me they're not a piton, they're a bolt. I appreciate that other people might have a different understanding of what a 'piton' is and what a 'bolt' is.

Post edited at 14:47
1
In reply to Si Witcher:

> Chris Parkin provides the video commentary. 

I wondered who it was as well. From what he is saying in the video (or at least what I remember from watching it a few days ago), it sounds like Chris is one of the people who has placed some of them? Is that the case? I was just interested in who is making them, if they are selling them the people who place them, or placing them themselves and so on. Even if I did want to place one (I stress, I don't) I would have no idea where you go about getting them from, so was interested whether this is just a really tight little group that has started doing this in N Wales, or is it widespread with them being commercially produced?

 PaulJepson 29 Nov 2022
In reply to jkarran:

If we are drilling into the rock then why do we need to leave anything there? You can get those handy removable bolts now. Why have something rotting in a hole at all? Just leave a bolt hole and it means that those who want to set off from the bottom and have a proper 'trad experience' can do so without a removable bolt and there's no temptation to clip a pbolt when you get to it. Also a lot less visual impact and no danger of people rogue-bolting on the argument that bolts are already in place. For less than the price of a cam, you can carry a bolt up with you. Just a thought. 

6
 jkarran 29 Nov 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

That's an option but it seems a bit contrived and exclusive to me. Personally I've never been very comfortable with either extreme option when it comes to critically pegged routes, neither 'let them rot' or 'strip and bolt' work for me as rules. I think they probably deserve to be looked at openly on a case by case basis, gear and norms change over time, our assessment of routes and how to maintain them in keeping with their history and peers probably should too.

My concern would be that if the process of what is retro-bolting pegged routes gathered momentum then formerly bold pegged routes may start to accumulate comfort bolts between their original fixed gear options to produce more balanced routes, so they got more attention justifying the effort. You can potentially over time end up with what is basically a mixed trad-sport crag by accident (White Peak and Welsh Slate both spring to mind leaving me with mixed opinions). Then what's the right approach to the remaining blank bits...

jk

 Si Witcher 29 Nov 2022
In reply to TobyA:

Chris came to the Area Meeting last month and gave a bit of an overview. He holds the stock alongside other North Wales Bolt Fund kit but there's no tracking of who places what and where.

I can't help with who manufactures or tests the pegbolts I'm afraid.

In reply to Hardonicus:

Looks like a peg, gets glued in place.......it's a gluepeg.

In reply to Toerag:

Or maybe the Emperor's New Clothes Peg? 

 jimtitt 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Bulls Crack:

What is this "pegging" Google keeps blocking anyway?

OP Hardonicus 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Si Witcher:

So with that in mind, are these pegbolts properly rated and do we have confidence in the manufacturing? If not then they are arguably even worse than placing a bolt.

1
 Si Witcher 29 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

> So with that in mind, are these pegbolts properly rated and do we have confidence in the manufacturing? If not then they are arguably even worse than placing a bolt.

Good questions to raise with Chris P.

The only comments I can point to re testing are here - reference to some pull testing done on an earlier version:

https://ukbouldering.com/board/index.php/topic,33285.msg668231.html#msg668231

 Max factor 29 Nov 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

> If we are drilling into the rock then why do we need to leave anything there? You can get those handy removable bolts now. Why have something rotting in a hole at all? 

Behold the ENP (environmental nut placement)! Sad I never came across one of these in Costa Blanca.

Post edited at 21:56
 Andy Hardy 30 Nov 2022
In reply to Hardonicus:

They have a lifespan (OK, one that will see me out) but surely glueing a peg in is just kicking the can a long way down the road. *Eventually* it will need replacing, but that replacement will be more difficult and damaging to the rock.

1
 Rick Graham 30 Nov 2022
In reply to Max factor:

> Behold the ENP (environmental nut placement)! Sad I never came across one of these in Costa Blanca.

The ENP is described in some of the older rockfax to the blanca, mostly placed around the Echo Valley area. Basically a home made rock 3, sometimes 2 or 4 fitted better, keyhole pocket placement. A glued in bit of crimped tube.  The spring was prone to seizing up. After any weighing the wire was hard to remove, something like a tent peg was needed to tap the nut back as a conventional nut key was too big.

Phantom arete is a three star 50m pitch high on haunted walls that had 7 enps . Raiding my spares  box of 40 years of accumulated crag swag, I just managed to get the required 7 second generation  rock 3s plus spare 2 and 4s gathered together and within my baggage allowance . Imagine my relief to find it had all been rebolted .

The replaceable rock anchors referred to earlier are designed as removable concrete anchors.

A quick Google suggests they are good for 23kn cost about £80 and fit in a 19mm diameter 75mm deep hole. 

 Rick Graham 30 Nov 2022
In reply to JLS:

I was about to mention them but another cup of coffee intervened

> The Petzl Pulse, which I think was being referred to, is only 8mm and £45.

One problem with just a drilled hole is finding it.

Allegedly on one of the Edwards experiments on ethical bolting, this problem was solved by painting a triangle to make the holes easier to locate.

 JLS 30 Nov 2022
In reply to Rick Graham:

>"One problem with just a drilled hole is finding it."

The hole will be beside the rotting remains of peg it replaces.  

 PaulJepson 30 Nov 2022
In reply to Rick Graham:

Wasnt it one of the Edwardses who was accused of routing TCU-shaped holes at uniform intervals on one of his FAs? Genius! This generation would have just glued a pbolt in....

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