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vRigger Learning Center

This also applies to cable, chain, and webbing.

Gear that is anchored includes anchors, rocks, trees, tripods, trucks, etc.

A "bight" is a simple loop in a rope that does not cross itself.

A "bend" is a knot that joins two ropes together. Bends can only be attached to the end of a rope.

"Descending devices" (e.g., ATCs, Brake Bar Racks, Figure 8s, Rescue 8s, etc) create friction as their primary purpose. The friction in descending devices is always considered when calculating forces.

The "Safety Factor" is the ratio between the gear's breaking strength and the maximum load applied to the gear (e.g., 5:1).

Troubleshooting Images

Occasionally vRigger's illustrations aren't perfect. It's challenging to model a physical world in a virtual environment. This page lists several situations and solutions that should improve your illustrations.

Ropes Intersecting

Sometimes ropes appear to pass through other ropes where they intersect. Read about a possible solution.

Rope Routing

If ropes aren't routing through the gear the way you'd like (e.g., they are entering/exiting the gear "backwards" or the ropes are displayed in front of, or behind, of other gear), it's time to read about advanced rope routing.

Overlapping Gear

You can change whether gear is drawn in front of, or behind, other gear by changing the gear drawing order.

Image Fragmentation

Sometimes pieces of gear appear to penetrate other gear. We call this "image fragmentation." See solutions to image fragmentation.

Gear Doesn't Appear Connected

Similar to image fragmentation, sometimes gear doesn't appear connected. This almost always occurs when multiple pieces of gear connect very close to each other. For example, when three carabiners are connected into a single eye on a pulley. Fortunately, this is a rare situation. Unfortunately, there isn't an easy solution. Sometimes you can rotate gear slightly or change the gear drawing order, but we usually end up changing the rigging (e.g., using a rigging plate) or copying the workspace and a few extra pieces of gear (e.g., a pulley and carabiners), pasting the image into Photoshop, and tweaking the image there.


Portions of curved ropes are sometimes missing (clipped) when printing or pasting the workspace into other software. That's a known problem and can be solved by placing a lone slack point near the curved rope.

Yellow Edges

Yellow edges, or a yellow rectangle, around gear indicates a problem with the image that was used to create the gear file. A slight tinge of yellow is normal, but if you see a more obvious yellow outline in gear that was included in vRigger, please contact us and tell us the gear you were using. Please also send us a Large copy of the workspace.

If you see this in gear you created using the Gear Builder, send us the gear image that you used to create the gear and the *.rra file. Time permitting, we might be able to help. FWIW, the yellow outline is usually caused by "anti-aliasing" when using image editing software (e.g., Photoshop).