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  1. #1
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    Question for Lift Maintenance Experts

    I spotted a frayed spot on the haul rope of our local old-ass fixed grip triple the other day.

    Checked back today: patrol says the guy responsible for that stuff looked at it and "says it's fine".

    Is a frayed spot on the main haul rope ever fine?

    Wouldn't that tend to chew up the sheave wheels and the bullwheel?

    I've been skiing since the mid 80s and have never seen the main cable on a lift frayed like that, I've seen cable go bad: winches, bike cables, etc, but never cable on a chairlift....but what do I know?

    Anyway, what do you guys think of this?

    EDIT: SPOT WAS FRAYED NYLON CORE, OF NO STRUCTURAL CONSEQUENCE
    Last edited by ill-advised strategy; 01-20-2017 at 04:44 PM.

  2. #2
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    was it the splice? those will show a frayed spot from time to time. I would expect that to chew up the wheels over time

    I am not a lift maintenance expert

  3. #3
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    at bohemia?

    they dont even accept us currency there



    * this should be posted in the lifties forum
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  4. #4
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    So ANSI (code) has a number of allowable broken wires within a certain distnance (it's actually a little more specific but whatever). The damage to the line equipment isn't the worry, it's the strength of the rope. If you can take a picture of it, and if it's a fixed grip ( low speed) chair write down the location. In relation to the chair numbers. What state is it? Forest service land? There could be inspectors you could contact about the issue.

  5. #5
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    define "frayed"

    Typically the rope splice will be located between chairs 1 and 6, depending on the size of rope. Sometimes a tuck turns out ugly but is still strong. Broken wires are another issue and the governing body will have a defined allowable limit.Visible broken and messy looking wires are a serious problem and the local governing body should be notified by the operator and or you immediately.

  6. #6
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    ....and yes I am a lift maintenance and wire rope expert.

  7. #7
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    The 1976 Vail gondola accident was caused by a frayed track cable that got hung up on the sheaves on a cabin.

    Also what they shred baron^ about the ANSI code.

    And I'd stop riding that chair.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ill-advised strategy View Post
    I spotted a frayed spot on the haul rope of our local old-ass fixed grip triple the other day.

    Checked back today: patrol says the guy responsible for that stuff looked at it and "says it's fine".

    Is a frayed spot on the main haul rope ever fine?

    Wouldn't that tend to chew up the sheave wheels and the bullwheel?

    I've been skiing since the mid 80s and have never seen the main cable on a lift frayed like that, I've seen cable go bad: winches, bike cables, etc, but never cable on a chairlift....but what do I know?

    Anyway, what do you guys think of this?
    What area/lift?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by The SnowShow View Post
    What area/lift?
    Gotta be Marquette Mountain. I will guess whichever of the 3 lifts is oldest.

  10. #10
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    Let's not bang on the actual ski area. It's financially tenuous...it's hard to stay open as a small hill in a small town. This is all about avoiding big trouble (on a spectrum from catastrophic malfunction to very expensive premature wear) for the ski community here and the operator while also not making any more trouble for myself (noticing these kinds of things makes me "the enemy" here).

    Just looking for expertise...which has been delivered. My focus in starting the thread is mostly to find out if this really is a legit concern...but not to hammer on the local. They're trying their best here under challenging circumstances.

  11. #11
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    repeal and replace with snow mobiles
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  12. #12
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    OK that's comedy gold right there.
    9.7/10

  13. #13
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    Let's just say this is the ski area, OK?
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by zartagen View Post
    The 1976 Vail gondola accident was caused by a frayed track cable that got hung up on the sheaves on a cabin.
    That story is chilling, I re read it from time to time for some weird reason. I thought that the cause was a frayed track cable that guides the haul rope over the sheaves and not the haul rope itself? They didn't stop the gondola immediately after the first reports because it was normal for the track cables to be frayed.

  15. #15
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    What is up Yeti! Glad you are still making it out to the hill

    any westward migration?? Let me know if you are planning a trip out west. Utah is getting absolutely dumped on right now.

    Cheers

    CAT
    POWDER SKIER
    COLD RAIN and SNOW

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by zartagen View Post
    The 1976 Vail gondola accident was caused by a frayed track cable that got hung up on the sheaves on a cabin.

    Also what they shred baron^ about the ANSI code.

    And I'd stop riding that chair.
    Track rope is different than haul rope. Generally more stiff since it doesn't have to go through bending around bull wheels etc. They tend to be really spring loaded, especially the really smooth z lock stuff where if one strand opens enough the whole thing will bird cage. If a wire or two poke out, you can cut them off and push me down and problem solved.

  17. #17
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    So I noticed this on Tues...couldn't get out on Wed.
    Today (thurs) I was out for a few hours on another chair and there were these little sprigs of frayed cable coming out of the cable just uphill of almost every single chair I rode...so either this is pretty normal and no big deal or we're really in trouble. My guess is it's gotta be pretty normal for there to be as many of these as I saw. It's one of those things that you can't unsee, last year somebody found a missing cotter pin and I look at those all the time now....that's why I was looking up, now I'm seeing these all over the cable...

    They look like this:


    Anyway, my post-traumatic stress makes me kind of tweak out when things look unsafe...like I don't trust that the wheels are going to stay on and the helicopter isn't going to fall out of the sky anymore. No faith in machines, no faith in people...this kind of stuff makes me nervous...but it's probably more about me at this stage than the lift.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by F#*k You Cat View Post
    What is up Yeti! Glad you are still making it out to the hill

    any westward migration?? Let me know if you are planning a trip out west. Utah is getting absolutely dumped on right now.

    Cheers

    CAT
    Many ups and downs. I'm surviving. We have skiing and surfing here, it's just primarily sub par with occasional glimpses of pretty good.
    Traveling is unlikely because money is pretty tight. I try not to spend a lot of time despairing, but it creeps up on me sometimes. This sure wasn't plan A.

    That all said, some minor tweaks in the program would net massive gains...
    Motorcycle
    Good MTB
    Sauna
    Chainsaw
    Schedule tweaks at work
    Stand up paddle board

    A few steps here, few there...Then again, if steps are the analogy, it's like we're climbing Everest and each step is like super wicked hard and takes way longer than it should.

    I sure do miss Utah. Our season total this year is probably less than 25". That's total. For the season. All season. I try not to despair, sometimes it gets pretty dark for a few days. I just cough and sputter and bog down and roll forward into better traction. I got slalom skis and I free carve our perpetual, season-long wrod gaily like a hard boot snowboarder. nttawwt. I have a nice bike commute and I'm pretty close to the beach. Ups and downs.

    [/sweet blog]

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ill-advised strategy View Post
    So I noticed this on Tues...couldn't get out on Wed.
    Today (thurs) I was out for a few hours on another chair and there were these little sprigs of frayed cable coming out of the cable just uphill of almost every single chair I rode...so either this is pretty normal and no big deal or we're really in trouble. My guess is it's gotta be pretty normal for there to be as many of these as I saw. It's one of those things that you can't unsee, last year somebody found a missing cotter pin and I look at those all the time now....that's why I was looking up, now I'm seeing these all over the cable...

    They look like this:

    .
    That looks like it's next to a tuck (part of the splice). It looks like that picture in particular it's a bit of fiber core poking through. Not really the best but way better than broken wires all over the place. Just out of curiosity do you know if this is a riblet lift (if you're not sure take a picture of the grip). BTW Talking to a patroller will get you funky answer most of the Tim because they get it second hand from a dude who is probably overworked. Midwest ski areas are known for running lean crews.

  20. #20
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    I'll have to try and get some photos for you guys.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by ill-advised strategy View Post
    Let's just say this is the ski area, OK?
    Did they go to the local kindergarten class to find that trail map artist?

    Let's do some livin'
    After, we die

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Benny Profane View Post
    Did they go to the local kindergarten class to find that trail map artist?
    Do not taunt Midwest Mountain.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by ill-advised strategy View Post
    Do not taunt Midwest Mountain.
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    Let's do some livin'
    After, we die

  24. #24
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    Bunny seems intimidated by Midwest Mountain (hence the lashing out) and I can see why with 2 lifts names freefall. Maybe name the 3rd knee twister and keep him away for good?

  25. #25
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    Not a lift expert, but I do work with wire rope and rigging in construction all the time and it is very likely relevant, or maybe even the same set of safety orders.

    Useful info
    OSHA on wire ropes for hoisting (not sure if this applies to lifts)
    https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owa...NDARDS&p_id=34

    Relevant section text:
    Apparent Deficiencies – Category II Removal from Service Criteria
    • Visible broken wires:
    In running wire ropes: six randomly distributed
    broken wires in one rope lay or three broken wires
    in one strand in one rope lay, where a rope lay is the
    length along the rope in which one strand makes a
    complete revolution around the rope.
    In rotation-resistant ropes: two randomly
    distributed broken wires in six rope diameters or
    four randomly distributed broken wires in 30 rope
    diameters.
    In pendants or standing wire ropes: more than two
    broken wires in one rope lay located in rope beyond
    end connections and/or more than one broken wire
    in a rope lay located at an end connection.
    • A diameter reduction of more than 5% from nominal
    diameter.

    Terminology:



    Your photo appears to be three broken wires in a strand which would mean it needs replacement if it was construction rigging, but it is not clear in the picture if they're all from the same strand. If they were from different strands, 3 broken wires is fine. I also am assuming that it is a running rope and not a rotation resistant rope, as those are typically only for cranes and wouldn't make much sense for lifts. You said you're seeing it on most chairs, so I have a hard time believing it's all splice tails. More likely damage from removing chairs at the end of the season and moving them down the rope.

    As far as your PTSD, these rules are written to keep a safety factor of 5 at all times, so even with that damage the cable is good for 5x the rated load. So don't go out in a storm.

    Again, I'm not a lift expert, but I am a construction rigging expert on my better days.
    Fat fuck bubbas are not erosion.

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