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– Bjorn Sturmberg
I have two methods of tying a tape harness which I prefer to T2’s simple example, but which still provide more versatility than his fixed knots method, which is a variant on the “Mountaineer Tape Harness” described in “On Rope” by Smith and Padgett (for the record T2 claims angels brought his design to him in his sleep).
The first method I wish to describe is probably the most comfortable I have tried. I only discovered it in “On Rope” the other day, where it is called the “quick-fit field harness” (what a technical but sexy name).
Start by wrapping the loop around you. Now grab the lower strand with both hands as shown in the picture below.
Each hand pulls back a loop through the waist loops that had been resting on the wrists.
A carabiner is then attached through these loops. (Be aware that this method involves a little bit more tape than the others.)
The second design is my own and is a variant on the most basic tape harness described here, although it comes with the advantages of being comfortable to wear whilst off rope and also avoiding cross loading on the carabiner.
The easiest way to judge the amount of tape you will need is to experiment. During the process of adjusting to get the right length just tie a temporary overhand knot to form a loop, with the length of the tails totalling a bit more than your waist circumference.
The only difference to T2’s harness at this stage is the longer tails and we go through the next steps analogously. First put the loop around you in a doubled up manner, then pull the bottom strand from behind you to the front.
The difference now is that we will pull the strand from the back above those you are holding on your front, pulling the two ends of the loop through and up.
This is where you attach your carabiner (through the 2 loop ends).
Next you simply tie the long tails around your waist and through these loop ends. By tying this waist strap at a comfortable tightness you can now wear the harness in comfort and without a carabiner swinging around in front of you.
Finally, remember to retie the overhand knot forming the original loop as a water knot to make it truly bombproof!
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