Dudes love grappling hooks. And it’s pretty much all due to Batman.
Redhook still remembers the first time he saw Batman plummeting off a building to certain doom. Rather than splatting on the sidewalk below, Batman fired his grappling hook gun at a gargoyle and swung to safety. Redhook stared at the TV in awe and said, “I need one of those.”
With a grappling hook at the ready, you’re never in danger of falling off building ledges. You never need stairs to access upper floors of buildings. And, like the dudes above, you can board ships, even if you’re not invited.
Then again, you can always simply mount your grappling hook on the fireplace. This is a subtle cue that tells visitors, “I am exciting because I do things that occasionally require me to use my grappling hook.”
Redhook is far from alone in his love of grappling hooks. A simple Google search reveals millions of links to pocket grappling hooks, guys throwing grappling hooks, dudes building homemade launchers, and quasi-military contractors. Even self-described geeky t-shirt designers dig the grappling hook.
Not all grappling hooks are equal, of course. The basic grappling hook is a fairly simple deal, as the Ninja above will attest. All you need is a large metal barb, a length of rope and something above you to throw at. Well, that and the bodily strength to pull your ass up once your rope gets hooked.
Sometimes, a guy needs to scale things that are higher than he can throw his grappling hook. For that, there are plenty of launchers to be found. One manufacturer claims it can launch a climbing line 120 vertical feet. Another claims it can throw a line up to 330 feet. Redhook will be looking into both of them.
Now, if you’re looking for a super lightweight, reverse rappel grappling hook combined with a launcher (like you’ve seen Batman use to rocket away from a hail of bullets), you’re out of luck. They don’t really exist. The whole strength-to-weight ratio thing comes into play. This guy explains why here.
That’s not to say there aren’t motorized reverse ascenders. There are, like the one in the video below. But that’s not what this post is about.
If you’re using your grappling hook this weekend, be safe and please don’t drink until you’re on flat ground.