Pitt Stop

The Pitt Stop

Pitt Stop rigged

The Pitt Stop on double rope

Pitt Stop tied off

The Pitt Stop tied off

The Pitt Stop (produced by Australian company PFH) is simply an advanced version of a piton brake bar.

A loop of rope is passed through the carabiner and pulled down over the Pitt Stop. The 'horns' provide a convenient lock-off, although it would be almost impossible on double 11mm rope, as there's not enough room to wrap it around twice. Even with double 9mm you don't want too large a carabiner if you want to get a lock off.

It is very quick to get on and off the rope, as there is no need to unlock the carabiner gate. This is particularly useful if you are in a pool or under a waterfall.

The main disadvantage is that it cross loads the gate of the carabiner. The design manages to minimise this impact by spreading the force more on the body of the carabiner, either side of the gate.

Safe The Pitt Stop cross loads the carabiner gate. It is not as bad as the piton brake bar as it is larger and the design manages to spread the load to either side of the gate, but it still puts pressure on the carabiner in its weakest configuration.
Quick release Very quick
In line Yes
Light weight Yes
Variable speed Not easily. Using a smaller or large carabiner can change the speed, but this takes time to set up.
Variable speed during descent No
Easy to lock off Relatively easy using the horns on the end - at least for double 9mm rope or single 11mm rope. It is more difficult using double 11mm rope.
Rescue use Relatively poor. Adding an extra person would be inadvisable
Belay use No
Heat dissipation Average