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Idle Chat / Re: Welsh Wezzit
« Last post by Huge on Today at 06:16:05 pm »
That was going to be my guess!  :)
Idle Chat / Re: Christmas presents for cavers!
« Last post by Sid on Today at 05:26:04 pm »
Mendip related goodies from the MCRA at

Idle Chat / Re: Friday joke - WARNING - contains swearing.
« Last post by Maj on Today at 04:51:39 pm »
Go Caerphilly Fulk, it's a cheese thing.
I'm not really surprised it went straight pasteurised and over your head.

Idle Chat / Re: Welsh Wezzit
« Last post by Allan on Today at 04:44:09 pm »
OFD2 Salubrious passage
Equipment / Re: Grubs Ptarmigan boots
« Last post by nice but damp on Today at 04:10:29 pm »
I find the same as Traff has alluded to .......

Quote from: andrewmc on December 16, 2017, 01:36:10 pm
Quote from: traff on December 16, 2017, 12:57:47 pm
One good reason NOT to buy them: Vibram soles.

As the standard manufacturer of the soles used on basically all the best boots in the world and available in a range of different materials and tread patterns to suit different requirements, that comment is going to need explanation :p

Agreed. He's really going to have to pull something out of the bag, I can't recall a decent boot *without* Vibram recently.

I personally think that they look like great boots for caving, but alas, would find them very slippery on wet rock.

while I was working for cotswolds outdoors, I had quite a few customers coming back and saying similar things regarding how slippery the Vibram sole units were on wet rocks (of various types). These folk were mountaineers and serious Hillwalkers who had had years of experience with various boots.
It seems that it has become a problem in the manufacture of the rubber used in the sole unit.

Back in the about 1997, I bought a pair of Salomon XTrail Boots for a trip up on the Coulins on Skye....They didn't have Vibram soles and where one of the best boots I have ever used.....with no slippage on wet rock!!

For Caving...I did use a pair of NCB boots again, back in the 90's , which were a high throated boot with a red rubber sole unit. They were amazing for underground use as they seemed to give incredible traction on wet limestone. Alas..never seemed to find another pair :(

Digging & Exploration Trips in The UK / Re: P8 Xmas Aven dig diary
« Last post by pwhole on Today at 03:24:41 pm »
I'm sure some large-diameter computer case fans with some hose attached could quite happily run on a large battery and chug the bad air out in a few mins.
Digging & Exploration Trips in The UK / Re: P8 Xmas Aven dig diary
« Last post by Topimo on Today at 02:59:02 pm »
It was worse than that actually. It had been in gear during the 3m push, but the last few cm to the clean tarmac was the most difficult for Will...

Photos to come.
Equipment / Re: Grubs Ptarmigan boots
« Last post by Simon Wilson on Today at 01:56:37 pm »

Although I haven't got these exact boots, I have the Etchè but I will never ever ever ever cave in wellies again. Do not see the attraction of an Ill fitted, no grip and no support boot just for the sake of "well we caved in wellies in the 70s" ...

Back in the day when wetsuits were the usual wear for cavers most of us wore wetsocks and leather boots which gave good grip and were excellent for climbing. The move towards wearing wellies went along with the move to PVC oversuits. The poorer grip and other minor disadvantages were very far outweighed by the overriding benefit of keeping dry.

As noted in another recent thread, the move to PVC oversuits was during the period when SRT came in. The change from the way things were done before was dramatic and we learned more and more how to stay dry which meant that cavers had greater endurance and achieved more underground.

One thing that all the savvy cavers did was learn how to create an effective seal between the wellies and oversuit but unfortunately fewer cavers are now doing this because the knowledge seems to be not being passed on. Sealing the wellies to a waterproof suit means that you can wade and crawl while keeping totally dry and I consider doing this to be a very important feature of my caving gear.

You need bands made from inner tubes which are the right size to be tight round the welly top. You also need welly stiffeners. I've been using the same pair of welly stiffeners for over thirty years. Mine are made out of closed-cell foam matting stitched together with gardening string into a tube. Other ones I've seen are made of flexible plastic sheet fixed together with rivets. I think another easy way of making them would be plastic sheet and duct tape.
Idle Chat / Re: Welsh Wezzit
« Last post by Alkapton on Today at 01:25:24 pm »
Aggy right near the start????
Idle Chat / Re: Friday joke - WARNING - contains swearing.
« Last post by Fulk on Today at 12:53:07 pm »
Well – as far as groan-worthy jokes come, they don't come much more groan-worthy than that! (I must admit, it took some time for the penny to drop.)
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