Rigging Jacklines

MauiPunter

Will sail for food
Anatomy_of_Jacklines.png


I found various diagrams online in regards to rigging jacklines, checked out the market for the equipment and the accompanying text and something isnt adding up. I have read that the jackline and tether should be setup such that you dont end up in the water and the tether should end at the edge of the boat. However, it seems like every tether on the market is 6' long. Since you rig up jacklines on each side of the coach roof generally, unless you have 6' wide side decks (not including the stretch of the tethers and jacklines) you are going to end up in the water. Perhaps this is not a problem as long as you are not at the back of the boat where you want the stern end of the jackline to be a tethers length from the stern, where you dont want to end up being dragged behind the boat. What is the reality of these systems? What have you found to be the best practices?

 

BobJ

Super Anarchist
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That's the illustration you see everywhere but I don't like it.

I run my jacklines down the centerline (passing on each side of the mast), over the top, aft edge of the cabin trunk (inboard of the cabintop winches) and down to two folding padeyes on either side of the companionway at the cockpit sole. I can clip in on either side before I exit the companionway and with the longer leg of the two-legged tether, I can get around the cockpit. While seated at the helm, I take a turn of the tether around the windward primary. (It's only a 30' boat.) I gets more complicated with a dodger.

I use the shorter leg of the two-legged tether when I'm going forward.

I race mostly singlehanded so I don't pee off the stern - I use a pee bottle in the cockpit.

 
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Spin Echo

Anarchist
654
2
Centerline jacklines totally make more sense. The conventional jacklines will not prevent one going overboard, but the centerline jacklines will.

 

MauiPunter

Will sail for food
For a centerline system, how do you deal with a dodger at the companion way? If its threaded through the dodger, then gettng forward from the cockpit is a non-starter. For centerline, I assume you dont have a dodger, right?

 

BobJ

Super Anarchist
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Right. Some of the guys have narrow hatch dodgers so it's not a big deal. With a big one you could go over the top but the frame probably isn't strong enough to keep the lines tight - that's going to be a mess.

The offshore racing rules require jacklines be continuous, otherwise you would have more options. A two-legged tether would allow you to clip into a forward jackline before unclipping from the aft, outboard line for example.

A lot of it is boat-specific and you do the best you can.

 
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MauiPunter

Will sail for food
I was also thinking, that in the diagram above, if you, as a rule, always clipped onto the windward side, you are safe. That should be ok 99% of the time. If you are on the leeward side then you just have to exhibit extra care.

 

Ron Swanson

Member
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Los Angeles
MP,

Are you racing? Cruising? Short handed or crewed? If cruising, I would ignore the rules about continuous & run a centerline from the mast to bow, then 2 lines on each side of your dodger to the mast. Your safety issues will primarily be fwd of the mast. With a long continuous run when the vessel lurches, or you trip you will be over the side. Not a big deal if you are on a crewed racing vessel, but a bigger deal if you're alone or your 98 lb wife needs to get you back aboard.

And let's not get started on backing plates and bolt sizes for the attachment points, tether shackles and lengths, or harness attachment points and leg straps. This discussion can get complex in a hurry.

 

estarzinger

Super Anarchist
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The offshore racing rules require jacklines be continuous.
I think you have mis-read the OSRs. The jacklines do not have to be continuous, but you have to be able move on deck continuously clipped on. With a two leg tether you can do this with discontinuous jacklines. You can even do it with a one leg tether if you have adequate static safety lines (which are essentially tethers fixed at the work stations).
I personally think the work station clip on points and static safety lines are much more important than the jacklines, and that there is too much focus and discussion on jacklines and not enough on workstation clip points and static clip lines. The static safety lines can be exactly sized to allow you to work while not long enough to reach the deck edge, and these and the clip points can easily be right on or near the centerline. And most of the mob incidents are crew working with two hands (eg not holding on with one) and very few are with crew moving up and down the deck (where they have hands free to hold onto stuff).

----------------------------------

4.04 Jackstays, Clipping Points and Static Safety Lines

4.04.1 The following shall be provided:

a) Jackstays:shall be provided

i attached to through-bolted or welded deck plates or other suitable and strong anchorage fitted on deck, port and starboard of the yacht's centre line to provide secure attachments for safety harness:-

ii comprising stainless steel 1 x 19 wire of minimum diameter 5 mm (3/16 in), high modulus polyethylene (such as Dyneema/Spectra) rope or webbing of equivalent strength

iii which, when made from stainless steel wire shall be uncoated and used without any sleeving

iv 20kN (2,040 kgf or 4,500 lbf) min breaking strain webbing is recommended;

v at least two of which should be fitted on the underside of a multihull in case of inversion.

4.04.2 Clipping Points:- shall be provided-

a) attached to through-bolted or welded deck plates or other suitable and strong anchorage points adjacent to stations such as the helm, sheet winches and masts, where crew members work for long periods:

B) which, together with jackstays and static safety lines shall enable a crew member

i to clip on before coming on deck and unclip after going below;

ii whilst continuously clipped on, to move readily between the working areas on deck and the cockpit(s) with the minimum of clipping and unclipping operations.

c) The provision of clipping points shall enable two-thirds of the crew to be simultaneously clipped on without depending on jackstays

d) In a trimaran with a rudder on the outrigger, adequate clipping points shall be provided that are not part of the deck gear or the steering mechanism, in order that the steering mechanism can be reached by a crew member whilst clipped on.

e) Warning - U-bolts as clipping points - see OSR 5.02.1(a).

Note: the new USSailing regs also do not required continuous jacklines. in my opinion they incorrectly minimize the focus on static clip points/safety lines to the companionway area. I think this is unfortunate and NOT the best practice.

Each crewmember shall have a safety harness and compatible safety tether not more than 7 feet (2.13m) long. The tether shall have a snap hook at its far end and a means to quickly disconnect the tether at the chest end.

A boat shall carry jacklines with a breaking strength of at least 4500 lb. (20kN) which allow the crew to reach all points on deck, connected to similarly strong attachment points, in place while racing.

A boat shall have adequate clipping points or jacklines that allow the crew to clip on before coming on deck and unclip after going below.

 
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BobJ

Super Anarchist
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Thanks Estar - I had misread them. That opens up more options for when a dodger is installed.

 

NoStrings

Super Anarchist
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Richmond, CA
Right. Some of the guys have narrow hatch dodgers so it's not a big deal. With a big one you could go over the top but the frame probably isn't strong enough to keep the lines tight - that's going to be a mess.

The offshore racing rules require jacklines be continuous, otherwise you would have more options. A two-legged tether would allow you to clip into a forward jackline before unclipping from the aft, outboard line for example.

A lot of it is boat-specific and you do the best you can.
there s no rule about having a bunch of them. For example, an Express 37 traveler would prevent one from routing jacklines as you do on Rags. Same on my boat or an Andrews 56. So we run jacklines that allow us to clip in before coming on deck, yet transition to the deck jacklines, cockpit jacklines, or hard clip points as desired. Don't get trapped into thinking that you have to meet ALL of your requirements with one pair of jacklines.

 
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estarzinger

Super Anarchist
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Dyneema 8mm, spliced loops on both ends. deck end cow hitched to whatever hardware (padeye etc), harness end cow hitched to harness clip. I am using tylaska shackles (actually the one in the photo below is a wichard I think, but generally 'trigger shackles') for the harness clips (compact and can be released under load).

There is an article I wrote on jacklines and tethers at www.bethandevans.com/pdf/jackline.pdf, and there are two photos of static lines in place at the helm and mast in it.

By the way, another tip, which was developed on the Volvo boats, is to have 'pockets' sewn into the jacklines at whatever locations you might stop and work. You clip around the jackline to move up and down the deck, but clip into one of these pockets when you stop and work. If a wave comes aboard and you are just clipped around the jackline you can get washed down its full length and smashed against the wheel or a winch. But if you are clipped into a pocket it holds you right there. These are not as good as near centerline fixed points or static lines at keeping you on board, so the fixed clip points and static lines are preferred. but the pockets are useful in some locations and some circumstances and are easy and cheap and light.

fixed tether.jpg

 
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slug zitski

Super Anarchist
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worldwide
Flat luminescent , night glow, safety harness tethers and jack lines are visible at night and assist crew if they must untangle themselves from deck gear. Flat jack lines dont roll under foot.

Glow tethers are also easy to find at night

Sparcraft type shackles are dangerous. You cant hear them " click" closed when its howling outside , there is no visual indicator to enure proper closure......and many crew may not be familiar with there use.

Best use professional gear at sea



subefotos

 

estarzinger

Super Anarchist
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Slug,

That type of clip (which you show) is preferred for the end that clips to the jack line, and I use a similar gibb design. But it is most definitely NOT preferred for the end that clips to the harness. You want, and various racing safety rules either recommend or require, a clip that can be released under load. That clip you show can not be released under load. There are various clip designs that that can, and generally it is agreed that the trigger shackles are the best of the 'under load' alternatives (as they were in fact specifically designed exactly for release under load).

The static lines I was talking about, and which my picture shows, cow hitch to hardware on deck and so don't need a jack line clip like the one you show. The only clip needed is that which goes to the harness, and a 'release under load clip is recommended and preferred.

Most of the comments you have made on this board have been a bit old fashion, and large boat cruising oriented, but represent acceptable choices. However, your comment above is flat out incorrect and represents bad seamanship. Perhaps that's because you are not familiar with the concept of static safety lines, (as required in the ISAF offshore safety regs) or the various incidents where people have been trapped by their tethers and not able to release them.

And you must not have recently used a sparcraft or tylaska or wichard trigger shackle, or have only used very worn ones,, because there is certainly a very definite clip felt when they close. You can always tell if they have not closed properly.

I do however agree with you that the night glow line and webbing is nice stuff. I made these static lines before it was available (and it is still hard to buy in USA), but if I was making these static lines again I would use it.

 
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Elegua

Generalissimo
Are products like the witchard jacklines too stretchy? I run those cow hitched to the forward mooring cleats and aft to the mooring cleats aft with the little attachment fitting they have.

I have 4 hard points into the cockpit that were once run with 1x19 wire, but removed it and just have people attach to the hard point.

I'm planning on adding hard points at the granny bars near the mast (currently I use the empty mast collar fittings) and next to the companionway. There is a fitting near the stem that is used for the inner forestay - I'm thinking that might be a useable hard point as well.

 

canstead

Anarchist
906
47
Good article Estar

It's interesting to note that between UK and Australian OSRs there is a difference between requirements on the clip at the harness end of a tether. The UK are silent, the Australian state a snap clip. I've got a cow hitch and a knife based on the fact the standard release clips won't release under load anyway.

This is the first time I've seen a suggestion of using the Tylaska style shackles at the harness end. I'll go get one tomorrow!

 

estarzinger

Super Anarchist
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Yes, the 'knife solution' . . . I do agree that "a seaman should carry a knife" . . . Terrific if it is all setup perfectly, lousy if not.

My set-up is fine for "normal" use, but not as good for emergency use . . . but it is practically speaking what I am willing to do.

I have compact "one-hand open" folder with a ceramic blade and a spike. I use both impliments. I normally wear it on a lanyard around my neck, under my shirt, but I also have a pocket for it on my harness strap.

I like the ceramic both because it's damn sharp, but also there will never be any rust or corrosion. Some of the 'stainless' folders I have had have frozen at the hinges (poor maintenance on my part).

I think ideally you would have a fixed blade (I can see problems with a folder when you are a bit shocked and stunned and injured) mounted so that you could always reach it with either hand (you might well injure one shoulder or arm in the incident). How to carry/mount it is the difficult part. The spinlock storage is completely unacceptable. Belt does not work. High on the harness strap can be good but you have to make sure a pfd bladder will not block it.

 
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estarzinger

Super Anarchist
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^^

Yea, I appreciate the neck concern. I remember someone way back had a serious incident.

The lanyard is really highly engineered . . . Its a long shoe lace :) not sure of the breaking strength . . . Not very high but probably could strangle me.

I never use the knife while the lanyard is around my neck (the lanyard is specifically not long enough) . . . I usually loop it around a wrist in use.

And when I am not using it, it is well tucked inside my shirt or jacket (except when I am naked on tropical passages :) )

I have tried all sorts of carring places and this works best for me . . . Eg I actually carry it and actually use it. . . . Which seems better than some theoretically safer method but which in real world practice I will not use.

I have a leatherman on my climbing harness . . . But it is not a one hand open.

 
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