Indian mountaineers from Pune, together with a German climber, have developed a new climbing bolt as they noticed that the climbing bolts used in India were not safe for the conditions. The now popular Mahatma Gandhi climbing bolt, as it was named, can withstand a vertical force of up to 3000 kgs.
As part of the India Safe Climbing Initiative (SCI), the Mahatma Gandhi climbing bolts are now used for fixing mountaineering and rock climbing routes across India. German climber Nicholas Mylander originally introduced examples of German made bolts and a bending machine to the SCI as an alternative to the bolts being used in India. Together they designed and tested the Mahatma Gandhi bolt.
The Mahatma Gandhi bolt is 16 mm wide and 9 cm to 18 cm long. The climbing bolt is made from a V2A steel available in India and costs roughly $5.00. The bolts are able to drill through multiple layers of rock and welded metal spots help to hold the bolts in place for years to come.
The climbing bolt is fixed by placing it inside a hole of identical length and diameter along with a chemical tube. The tube breaks and forms a very hard mixture needed to hold the bolt in place. This fixing process takes less than 10 minutes to complete.
The plan is to now rebolt or continue to bolt the major climbing areas of India. What do you think- should India be bolting all their climbing areas? Can you argue that at least they are making it safer for people to practice a sport?