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Soft shackles for attaching tethers to jack lines


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#1 peterchech

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 10:24 PM

Besides being cheap and strong, soft shackles don't go dinging up the entire deck as you move forward and aft on the jack line. Any reason im overlooking not to use dyneema soft shackles instead of aluminum or steel carabiners to attach a tether to the jack lines? (Not to the harness, just the jack lines)

#2 Estar

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 12:10 AM

No big reason not to.  However, they are usually slower to operate than the normal metal hooks.



#3 driverdog

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 01:08 AM

and at this point not legal.



#4 Jethrow

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 01:09 AM

My thinking would be that the carbiner safety hook that is part of the tether has been tested and approved for that tether. If you change the hook then you're not using an approved harness system. This might not be a problem for cruisers but it could be an issue for a racer.



#5 New Morning

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 04:43 AM

They're very slow to attach and detach, frequently requiring two hands at a time when you'd prefer to have one holding onto the boat.



#6 allen

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 06:32 AM

THIS design is faster and easier to use.  It has been strength tested and shown to be slightly stronger than the line it is made of.



#7 Presuming Ed

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 06:50 AM

dinging up the entire deck

 

Bit ot tape/padding on the snap shackle? (Don't leave it on, obviously).



#8 duncan (the other one)

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 08:19 AM

Holy crap... this is a stupid idea.


You do realise why tethers and harnesses are used, don't you?

 

How do you do up a soft shackle with one hand? Now try it, unhooking and re-hooking as you move about the boat.

 

How reliable is it when unloaded for a long period of time?  What about sloshing about in water ? What about when other lines and things tangle with it?

 

I can't see why an aluminium caribiner is going to ding much up - you must have a soft deck.

 

(edit -- maybe I'm being race-centric.. you could use a soft shackle to latch your pooch onto the deck without concern)



#9 peterchech

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 11:13 AM

Holy crap... this is a stupid idea.

You do realise why tethers and harnesses are used, don't you?
 
How do you do up a soft shackle with one hand? Now try it, unhooking and re-hooking as you move about the boat.
 
How reliable is it when unloaded for a long period of time?  What about sloshing about in water ? What about when other lines and things tangle with it?
 
I can't see why an aluminium caribiner is going to ding much up - you must have a soft deck.
 
(edit -- maybe I'm being race-centric.. you could use a soft shackle to latch your pooch onto the deck without concern)

The one-hand argument is a good one, although the carabiners I've been using with the safety lock aren't reliably a one hand operation either, especially with cold hands.

There is no practical way on my boat to keep the jack lines inboard from the rail, so I've been keeping tethers hooked up on the jack lines and I now have a dedicated mast tether and soon will have a bow tether as well (using 1/4" dyneema these don't cost much)

I make the soft shackles the way Allen linked to, I-36.com, I don't think they could open accidentally, though I'm a tad skeptical about the "strength testing" which last time I checked the author of that excellent site did with an automobile tow package lol

#10 duncan (the other one)

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 11:21 AM

ok.. so if you have permanent tethers, splice or tie them on, or put a velcro fastening around the soft shackle to make sure it won't open.. 

 

sort of defeats the purpose I would have thought.



#11 allen

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 02:41 PM

Holy crap... this is a stupid idea.

You do realise why tethers and harnesses are used, don't you?
 
How do you do up a soft shackle with one hand? Now try it, unhooking and re-hooking as you move about the boat.
 
How reliable is it when unloaded for a long period of time?  What about sloshing about in water ? What about when other lines and things tangle with it?
 
I can't see why an aluminium caribiner is going to ding much up - you must have a soft deck.
 
(edit -- maybe I'm being race-centric.. you could use a soft shackle to latch your pooch onto the deck without concern)

The one-hand argument is a good one, although the carabiners I've been using with the safety lock aren't reliably a one hand operation either, especially with cold hands.

There is no practical way on my boat to keep the jack lines inboard from the rail, so I've been keeping tethers hooked up on the jack lines and I now have a dedicated mast tether and soon will have a bow tether as well (using 1/4" dyneema these don't cost much)

I make the soft shackles the way Allen linked to, I-36.com, I don't think they could open accidentally, though I'm a tad skeptical about the "strength testing" which last time I checked the author of that excellent site did with an automobile tow package lol

The strength testing was done at New England Rope with the help of Brion Toss.  The automotive testing was the first test in a long line of trying to characterize the strength that ended in the professional testing.  It wasn't all that informative because the setup was not as strong as the soft shackle or the test link.  But the automotive testing was kind of fun to watch wasn't it?

 

You should make up one of the soft shackles, hook it up, and try and get it to open by itself.  Make it hard on the shackle by opening the loop up like you were going to remove it and then shake it and pull on it.  Your results may vary and you are ultimately responsible for deciding it is OK but I can't get them to open without pushing the knot through the opening.  Any tug at all closes them up.

 

That all said, on Papoose, I have a tether that is tied to the jackline with a bowline and the carabiner is on the end that attaches to my harness.  The jackline goes the length of the boat and when I go back to the cockpit, I can unclip.  That way there is nothing to scratch the paint and yet I can get out of it when I want.  I guess I agree with some of the other comments that if you want it permanent, tie or splice it.  If you want it removable, use a carabiner.  You could always have multiple tethers if you need them in different places, clip in on the new one, unclip the old one.  All of them could be permanently attached to the spr

 

Allen

L-36.com



#12 BalticBandit

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 03:43 PM

Can you open a soft shackle under load?  Because I can open a 'biner under load.  And that's the key, imagine if the boat is rolled and you are under water with your PFD pulling up against the tether.  you need to be able to unsnap or you drown.  with soft shackle you are dead.  simple. Also unless each splice is actually safety tested the way 'biners are, you don't know what you have.  you simply don't.  you can buy tethers that have rubber coated 'biners of your deck is so fragile, but AL 'biners are tested, your soft shackles are not.



#13 TheFlash

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 03:52 PM

I think he was saying for the attachment to the jackline, not the attachment to the harness, but I do agree that it doesn't seem to be an ideal solution, since you want to easily be able to move from one attachment point to another.



#14 haligonian winterr

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 10:08 PM

Go to your local auto or machine shop, ask where they get their tool handles re-dipped. Bring your 'Biner/tether in, ask them to dip the whole hook not including mechanisms and jaws, or see if they can roll it so its only the piece that touches the deck that is dipped.

(Being a racer) if we slam jibe at 0300 and I need to clip in as I'm running out of the companionway with three grinders coming up behind me, you can sure as hell bet I won't be fiddling with a softie. Personally, I'm all about safety and speed, and while softies are the bees knees in other applications, this isn't one of them.

HW

EDIT: If you don't want to dip your biners, dig in your cupboard, grab a roll of E tape, and go to town.

#15 peterchech

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 01:15 AM


Holy crap... this is a stupid idea.
You do realise why tethers and harnesses are used, don't you?
 
How do you do up a soft shackle with one hand? Now try it, unhooking and re-hooking as you move about the boat.
 
How reliable is it when unloaded for a long period of time?  What about sloshing about in water ? What about when other lines and things tangle with it?
 
I can't see why an aluminium caribiner is going to ding much up - you must have a soft deck.
 
(edit -- maybe I'm being race-centric.. you could use a soft shackle to latch your pooch onto the deck without concern)

The one-hand argument is a good one, although the carabiners I've been using with the safety lock aren't reliably a one hand operation either, especially with cold hands.
There is no practical way on my boat to keep the jack lines inboard from the rail, so I've been keeping tethers hooked up on the jack lines and I now have a dedicated mast tether and soon will have a bow tether as well (using 1/4" dyneema these don't cost much)
I make the soft shackles the way Allen linked to, I-36.com, I don't think they could open accidentally, though I'm a tad skeptical about the "strength testing" which last time I checked the author of that excellent site did with an automobile tow package lol
The strength testing was done at New England Rope with the help of Brion Toss.  The automotive testing was the first test in a long line of trying to characterize the strength that ended in the professional testing.  It wasn't all that informative because the setup was not as strong as the soft shackle or the test link.  But the automotive testing was kind of fun to watch wasn't it?
 
You should make up one of the soft shackles, hook it up, and try and get it to open by itself.  Make it hard on the shackle by opening the loop up like you were going to remove it and then shake it and pull on it.  Your results may vary and you are ultimately responsible for deciding it is OK but I can't get them to open without pushing the knot through the opening.  Any tug at all closes them up.
 
That all said, on Papoose, I have a tether that is tied to the jackline with a bowline and the carabiner is on the end that attaches to my harness.  The jackline goes the length of the boat and when I go back to the cockpit, I can unclip.  That way there is nothing to scratch the paint and yet I can get out of it when I want.  I guess I agree with some of the other comments that if you want it permanent, tie or splice it.  If you want it removable, use a carabiner.  You could always have multiple tethers if you need them in different places, clip in on the new one, unclip the old one.  All of them could be permanently attached to the spr
 
Allen
L-36.com

I guess I haven't been to your website in a while Allen, good to know. I made up a bunch if your "better soft shackles" and I use them wherever I can. They are cheap, light, strong and I can't see how one could realistically open accidentally. I get asked about them frequently by other sailors too. Thanks!

#16 allen

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 02:08 AM

If you go to the soft shackle tab on L-36.com you will see that the testing was in 3 stages.  Stage 1 had the car test, which proved nothing because the big thick double braid that I was using to tie the soft shackles under test to the car broke. The second phase of that test used a winch and broke the test line showing that the soft shackle was stronger than the line it was made of.  Stage 2 showed that they were not twice as strong as the line they were made of and Stage 3 got real numbers showing them to be just a tad stronger than the line they were made of.  They always fail at the knot.



#17 micha571

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 11:16 AM

 

 


Holy crap... this is a stupid idea.
You do realise why tethers and harnesses are used, don't you?
 
How do you do up a soft shackle with one hand? Now try it, unhooking and re-hooking as you move about the boat.
 
How reliable is it when unloaded for a long period of time?  What about sloshing about in water ? What about when other lines and things tangle with it?
 
I can't see why an aluminium caribiner is going to ding much up - you must have a soft deck.
 
(edit -- maybe I'm being race-centric.. you could use a soft shackle to latch your pooch onto the deck without concern)

The one-hand argument is a good one, although the carabiners I've been using with the safety lock aren't reliably a one hand operation either, especially with cold hands.
There is no practical way on my boat to keep the jack lines inboard from the rail, so I've been keeping tethers hooked up on the jack lines and I now have a dedicated mast tether and soon will have a bow tether as well (using 1/4" dyneema these don't cost much)
I make the soft shackles the way Allen linked to, I-36.com, I don't think they could open accidentally, though I'm a tad skeptical about the "strength testing" which last time I checked the author of that excellent site did with an automobile tow package lol
The strength testing was done at New England Rope with the help of Brion Toss.  The automotive testing was the first test in a long line of trying to characterize the strength that ended in the professional testing.  It wasn't all that informative because the setup was not as strong as the soft shackle or the test link.  But the automotive testing was kind of fun to watch wasn't it?
 
You should make up one of the soft shackles, hook it up, and try and get it to open by itself.  Make it hard on the shackle by opening the loop up like you were going to remove it and then shake it and pull on it.  Your results may vary and you are ultimately responsible for deciding it is OK but I can't get them to open without pushing the knot through the opening.  Any tug at all closes them up.
 
That all said, on Papoose, I have a tether that is tied to the jackline with a bowline and the carabiner is on the end that attaches to my harness.  The jackline goes the length of the boat and when I go back to the cockpit, I can unclip.  That way there is nothing to scratch the paint and yet I can get out of it when I want.  I guess I agree with some of the other comments that if you want it permanent, tie or splice it.  If you want it removable, use a carabiner.  You could always have multiple tethers if you need them in different places, clip in on the new one, unclip the old one.  All of them could be permanently attached to the spr
 
Allen
L-36.com

I guess I haven't been to your website in a while Allen, good to know. I made up a bunch if your "better soft shackles" and I use them wherever I can. They are cheap, light, strong and I can't see how one could realistically open accidentally. I get asked about them frequently by other sailors too. Thanks!

+1

We're using Allen's softies as jibsheet-attachments, now in the second season now. Would not use anything else anymore.



#18 Christian

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 01:23 PM

With all respect to Allen - that way of making soft shackles has been done for a good number of years - but good on him for putting up instructions



#19 allen

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 03:46 PM

With all respect to Allen - that way of making soft shackles has been done for a good number of years - but good on him for putting up instructions

Christian,

 

Soft shackles have been made for years.  The most common one is sold at Defender, West Marine, and others.  It is hard to open and close and gets increasingly so as it is used.  I have instructions for that on website HERE and have for some time.  But the one I am talking about is different and of a newer design.  You cannot buy it anywhere except perhaps ebay where some people copied my design (and claim strength that cannot be supported).  My new design is easy to open and closes itself with a slight pull.  You should check it out HERE.  They would all have the same strength however as the weak point is the diamond knot.

 

soft_shackle_9_ss9_1.jpgsoft_shackle_9_ss9_4.jpg

 

Allen



#20 Christian

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 08:59 PM

I have been making that version for years and so have others.  It is nothing new under the sun.

With all respect to Allen - that way of making soft shackles has been done for a good number of years - but good on him for putting up instructions

Christian,

 

Soft shackles have been made for years.  The most common one is sold at Defender, West Marine, and others.  It is hard to open and close and gets increasingly so as it is used.  I have instructions for that on website HERE and have for some time.  But the one I am talking about is different and of a newer design.  You cannot buy it anywhere except perhaps ebay where some people copied my design (and claim strength that cannot be supported).  My new design is easy to open and closes itself with a slight pull.  You should check it out HERE.  They would all have the same strength however as the weak point is the diamond knot.

 

soft_shackle_9_ss9_1.jpgsoft_shackle_9_ss9_4.jpg

 

Allen



#21 allen

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 10:55 PM

I have been making that version for years and so have others.  It is nothing new under the sun.

 

With all respect to Allen - that way of making soft shackles has been done for a good number of years - but good on him for putting up instructions

Christian,

 

Soft shackles have been made for years.  The most common one is sold at Defender, West Marine, and others.  It is hard to open and close and gets increasingly so as it is used.  I have instructions for that on website HERE and have for some time.  But the one I am talking about is different and of a newer design.  You cannot buy it anywhere except perhaps ebay where some people copied my design (and claim strength that cannot be supported).  My new design is easy to open and closes itself with a slight pull.  You should check it out HERE.  They would all have the same strength however as the weak point is the diamond knot.

 

soft_shackle_9_ss9_1.jpgsoft_shackle_9_ss9_4.jpg

 

Allen

Do you have any link or reference to it?  I had never seen it and neither had Brion Toss who credits me with it in his seminars where he teaches how to make them.  There is another version that has been around a long time that is similar but mine is more secure.  It is more or less a hybrid between the two versions shown below.

LL4U0043.JPGsoft4.jpg



#22 Christian

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 04:04 AM

Mate - not all rigging happens on the web - it happens on boats.  Not every single "invention" is described as many just do it but don't necessarily share it.  I think it is great that you put instructions on the web.

 

I have been making that version for years and so have others.  It is nothing new under the sun.

 

With all respect to Allen - that way of making soft shackles has been done for a good number of years - but good on him for putting up instructions

Christian,

 

Soft shackles have been made for years.  The most common one is sold at Defender, West Marine, and others.  It is hard to open and close and gets increasingly so as it is used.  I have instructions for that on website HERE and have for some time.  But the one I am talking about is different and of a newer design.  You cannot buy it anywhere except perhaps ebay where some people copied my design (and claim strength that cannot be supported).  My new design is easy to open and closes itself with a slight pull.  You should check it out HERE.  They would all have the same strength however as the weak point is the diamond knot.

 

soft_shackle_9_ss9_1.jpgsoft_shackle_9_ss9_4.jpg

 

Allen

Do you have any link or reference to it?  I had never seen it and neither had Brion Toss who credits me with it in his seminars where he teaches how to make them.  There is another version that has been around a long time that is similar but mine is more secure.  It is more or less a hybrid between the two versions shown below.

LL4U0043.JPGsoft4.jpg






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