Episode 36: Choss Wranglers BJ Sbarra and Mike Schneiter.

A really bad bolt cleaned off a popular local route. YIKES!

On Episode 36 of the Enormocast, I sit down with return guest BJ Sbarra and local guide and teacher Mike Schneiter to discuss new routing and bolting. In this episode, we manage to say “bolt” enough times to probably overload the servers over at the Supertopo Forum. Mike and BJ share their vast knowledge of putting steel to rock and creating climbs so we don’t have to. To Bolt or Not to Be really is the question here in the Roaring Fork Valley, and BJ and Mike give us some good inside knowledge on why we ought not forget that even bolts can fail.


glenwoodclimbingguides.com (Mike’s Company)

A post by Mike about replacing bolts on Pretty Hate Machine in Rifle



8 Replies to “Episode 36: Choss Wranglers BJ Sbarra and Mike Schneiter.”

  1. I want to learn to bolt! I emailed Mike. That was Mike who offered to teach people right?

  2. Probably the most qualified and experienced climbing bolt engineer / researcher / tester / manufacturer / rigger , right now is Jim Titt in Germany. His website is a compendium of scientific data and practical advice.

    1. Wow, Rusty Baillie on the Enormocast forum! Dragon Route! Banditos. Respect, sir. Anyway, I remember Jim’s name when I was climbing in Sicily, mostly because it made me giggle like a middle school girl. But I’ll take a look at that site for sure.

      1. Sure is easier punching plastic than that hot desert rock!
        Yup — the Eurotypes do like their sun and sea. There are 2 T’s there, so it’s Ok…..

        To be boring:
        A key element in this Informed Discussion is how long a bolt will last, before the rock must be further dinged up replacing it.
        I suspect Sbarra and Schneiter were somewhat pessimistic. Even without variables like rainfall, soil acidity etc, a one piece SS glue in bolt is very close to inert. It may be not very much more susceptible to corrosion than the rock itself. The famous “nipple” bolt mounds on The Finger Of Fate (Titan) [watch that giggling],
        show that the rock itself is not timeless.

        So — if we can get these glue in bolts into common use, we may be able to keep our precious rock untrashed for a longer while.

        Meantimes, we can make solid clips, rather than put our fragile bones onto some anchor designed to “come out easily”?

        OK – so I have to admit that the vastly more enlightened attitude the Europeans have to topless activities makes sea cliff climbing there refreshingly more aesthetic…………

  3. You guys should take some of those really bad bolts and send them to DMM, or some other climbing company with a testing facility. They could do some destructive testing on the bolts and see how much they are degraded from their original spec.

    If you can’t find a climbing company that can test them out, you could try some local universities that have a good Mechanical Engineering department. Convince some professor, or grad student (There are usually lots of engineers that climb where I am (Vancouver/Victoria, BC, Canada)) to help you out with some basic tests.

    This would make an awesome podcast/youtube video.

    1. Kolin Powick from BD is a big fan of the show and he’s agreed to come on to discuss all this sorts of stuff. He’s the guy in charge of breaking shit for them. Should be enlightening.

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