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While reading this question it stuck me as odd that a fifi hook is mentioned on par with a daisy chain.

Not being trained for aid climbing, I'm not sure why I'd want to use a fifi at all. The only use I know for a fifi (and a somewhat dangerous use) is to retrieve the rope if you're the last descender and can't retrieve your rope using the common means (such as using double rope and pulling one end).

How is the fifi hook used in aid climbing? And how is the need for it replaced with a daisy chain?

What other uses does the fifi hook have?

  • How do you use a fifi to retrieve a rope? I do not see fifis mentioned in any of the answers in the linked question. – imsodin Aug 14 '15 at 18:10
  • 1
    In very short, the fifi allows you to hang from wherever you find it comfortable or necessary in a snap. No need to open levers nor anything. Just tip it over the carabiner or the aider step you aim to and sit. – Dakatine Aug 14 '15 at 20:20
  • @imsodin The fifi retrieval technique is shown in this video. It's in spanish, but you should understand how it works (and why it's dangerous). – Roflo Aug 14 '15 at 20:27
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And how is the need for it replaced with a daisy chain?

Here you are confusing something: With an adjustable daisy chain you do not need a fifi anymore. Using a standard daisy chain you need a fifi when aiding.

How is the fifi hook used in aid climbing?

First let me describe what a daisy chain and a fifi are:

Daisy chain:
enter image description here
This is a webbing sling that is sewn together at regular distances. Usually about 2 bar tacks are used, so they are not very strong (about 3kn). Therefore they can break when loaded with e.g. a fall. This is not a problem as long as you clip into just one loop. Never clip in over two loops, then you will disconnect from the sling when the bar tacks in between fail. If correctly attached, the breaking of the bartackes can even reduce the impact absorbing energy.

Fifi:
enter image description here
A fifi is simply a hook that is attached to your harness.

When aiding you have two daisy chains and a fifi attached to your harness. On the ends of the daisy chains is a biner with a ladder each. One of those is set up at the current pro (a nut, cam, ...) and you placing the next pro. When done you clip in the biner on the other daisy chain and step onto the ladder (using both your hands). To get your hands free and get as much reach as possible for the next go, you attach the fifi in a loop of the daisy chain at the desired distance to the pro. This ca of course also be directly the attachment point of the pro, to get as close as possible. Then your load is on one foot in the ladder and on your harness via the daisy and fifi. Now you can push upwards with your foot and the fifi/daisy will provide the pull towards the wall. You reach the next placement and repeat.

What other uses does the fifi hook have?

I am not aware of any outside of aiding.

  • 2
    I am sure there are other ways to do aiding, this is just the way I learned it from a experienced aid climber. – imsodin Aug 14 '15 at 18:13
  • One other use for the fifi hook: when you have a vertical belay you can hang your pig (haul bag) by the fifi to the lower belay. This way, you can just pull it and it should unclip from the bolt to be hauled. (P.S.: this technique usually involves nightmarish situations where the fifi doesn't come off and/or grabs something on its way - even so, it's a really useful one, if used wisely) – QuantumBrick Aug 7 '17 at 17:40

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