Elastics updatedby BASEwiki
Black and tan elastics (penny for scale)The lines in a BASE rig are almost always free-stowed rather than held in place using elastics, as in skydiving. Nevertheless, elastics are used in BASE for many purposes, including:
- Closing the tailgate;
- Holding the slider in direct control;
- Holding a bight of line in indirect control;
- Stowing the Multi bridle attachment;
- Containing the bridle in a static line jump.
Elastics used in BASE are generally of one of two types, shown in the photo to the right. On the right is a tan elastic — a small skydiving elastic cut in half lengthwise; on the left is shown a black elastic. Tan elastics are cheaper and easier to find, but break more easily. Black elastics are much more difficult to break, and therefore need to be replaced less frequently.
In the BASE world, where packing is often done in the field and elastics can be difficult to attach, replacing elastics can be even more of a pain than in the skydiving world. Black elastics are therefore popular for many applications. Unlike with a skydiving main, however, an elastic that fails to release on a BASE rig almost always leads to injury, and can be fatal. Particularly in a subterminal environment, where the tailgate is used (and the multi if the rig is equipped with one), applied forces may be insufficient to break a black elastic which becomes locked up. Black elastics should not be used for these applications.