Étriers made from the wheel rim of a Soviet-made Sputnik semi-racing bicycle
Étriers (short climbing ladders) are essential technical equipment for a difficult climb that requires artificial means. In Dragoș Petrescu’s private collection of improvised gear, there are three such items, made by working with a rather unusual material: “The lateral elements of the étriers are made from synthetic tape for blinds, sewn with surgical threat, also synthetic, and dyed red and blue with Gallus textile dye. Then the rungs, the second basic component of the étriers, are made from pieces of the wheel rim of a Sputnik (USSR) semi-racing bicycle. However you had to get hold of the bicycle wheel rim. You could have the good fortune, as I did, to have an acquaintance who gave up a bashed wheel that was beyond repair. Once you got the wheel rim, the inner frame, then you cut it to the desired size, carefully smoothed the sharp edges (with a file and sandpaper), and used it for the rungs of the improvised étriers. This wheel rim was made of duralumin and it was suitable for making étrier rungs, which had to be light and strong. Consequently, you were obliged to improvise. Out of one such wheel rim I managed to make two normal étriers and one smaller one,” says Dragoș Petrescu. The improvised étriers are still useable today.
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- Anonymous Mountaineer Collection
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Author(s) of this page
- Petrescu, Cristina
- Pătrăşconiu, Cristian Valeriu
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Pătrășconiu, Cristian. 2018. “Fiecare om are verticala lui: Interviu cu Dragoș Petrescu” (Each person has their vertical: Interview with Dragoș Petrescu). LaPunkt, October 23. Accessed October 30, 2018. https://www.lapunkt.ro/2018/10/interviu-dragos-petrescu-fiecare-om-are-verticala-lui/
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Petrescu, Dragoș, interview by Pătrăşconiu, Cristian Valeriu , July 12, 2018. COURAGE Registry Oral History Collection