As someone who sits just over 110kgs, I feel your pain!Hi, just wondering what descender you recommend for a heavy guy (130kg) on long abseils? And do you recommend a backup prusik?
I'm currently using a Black Diamond ATC with an auto block and would like something better to feel more in control.
I'd definitely advise against an ATC. Like most climbing belay devices, it makes sense for climbers to abseil with it, because it's what they have with them, but really doesn't make sense for canyoning. You end up with too much friction at the top of the rope, and far too little as you get to the bottom. A number of serious canyon accidents around the world have been caused by people using tube style devices.
Good canyoning descenders allow a range of friction settings that can be easily changed when on rope. This is useful for longer drops, but also allows you to switch easily between double and single rope abseils, or different rope diametres. Some also allow you to rig them to provide a higher level of friction, which can help people like us who are carrying a few more kilos!
Personally, I almost never use gloves because I use descenders that do the hard work for me. By changing friction on the fly I can control my descent with a couple fingers (rather than clinging desperately to the rope!)
The SQWUREL is a really good descender, and one I've used a lot over the years. The tail allows really easy changes to friction. The CRITR2 and Hoodoo are also both good. The arms allow a range of friction settings that can again be easily shifted while on rope.
Personally, I very rarely use an auto block. They can be dangerous when in flowing water, but also often fail when needed (people who are losing control often grab onto the auto block, which stops it gripping the rope). I'd rather use a descender that stops me from losing control in the first place. If I do feel the need to use an auto block (usually when I think there's a risk I may have to pass a knot or deal with challenges while descending) my preference is for a VT Prusik. Unlike a normal prusik knot, which can be very hard to release once weighted, a VT knot is easy to move, even when loaded.
I hope some of that helps.