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Old 07-04-2015, 15:18   #1
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A better way to secure the liferaft

Ok brainiacs, does anyone have a suggestion for a better way to secure the raft than my current setup. We have a knife handy to cut the line but I'm not happy with the current arrangement. It was a bit makeshift 5000 miles ago. What I'd like is some kind of lever clip like I used to have on my beach cat forestay that as you lever it it tensions and then has some kind of secure clip to hold it in place, but I'm not sure what they're called. Any other suggestions for a type of clip that can be tensioned and secured and only released when absolutely necessary would be much appreciated

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It sits on a stainless bracket so the line just needs to hold it in place. Yes the painter is secured to the bracket!
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Old 07-04-2015, 15:30   #2
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

This may help
A raft in need - Ocean Navigator - November/December 2014
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Old 07-04-2015, 15:43   #3
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

I like your set up. I would only modify it to use polyester webbing below the raft, with lashings to the two hopefully structural points.

Lashing (unless too fine line has been used) can be cut or undone by hand. Impossible to achieve with most metal fittings.

Problem with lashing is that some too interested party may remove the raft when you are not watching ...

Probably keep the soft attachment for the crossings and deploy something more theft-proof for cruising.

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Old 07-04-2015, 15:46   #4
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

Pelican hook is the fitting I was thinking of. Maybe use one each side independently?
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Old 07-04-2015, 15:54   #5
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

That's a great article sailvayu, perfect! Thanks. I see the lagoon in the article has a similar setup. Although it's a bit more snug. I wonder if those straps are secure enough and easy enough to release under pressure.
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Old 07-04-2015, 17:31   #6
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

Quote:
Originally Posted by monte View Post
Pelican hook is the fitting I was thinking of. Maybe use one each side independently?
Attachment 100104
Or this. Attach a little lanyard to the ring. Releases even when under the tension needed to keep your life raft firmly in place.
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Old 07-04-2015, 17:36   #7
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

Maybe this will give you some ideas?
Not shown: the back side has a turnbuckle for tightening that cable.
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Old 07-04-2015, 17:53   #8
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

That looks a bit TOO secure! No hydrostatic release on that one?
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Old 07-04-2015, 22:03   #9
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

Quote:
Originally Posted by monte View Post
Ok brainiacs, does anyone have a suggestion for a better way to secure the raft than my current setup. We have a knife handy to cut the line but I'm not happy with the current arrangement. It was a bit makeshift 5000 miles ago. What I'd like is some kind of lever clip like I used to have on my beach cat forestay that as you lever it it tensions and then has some kind of secure clip to hold it in place, but I'm not sure what they're called. Any other suggestions for a type of clip that can be tensioned and secured and only released when absolutely necessary would be much appreciated

Attachment 100103
It sits on a stainless bracket so the line just needs to hold it in place. Yes the painter is secured to the bracket!
I think that what you're referring to is a hyfield lever. Which used to be easily sourced through a company called ABI. Which/who sadly, is defunct. Though if you scrounge, you can still find pre-loved ones. Or make one/have one made, as more or less, they're just simply a long lever attached to a camming mechanism, which tighten things when the lever is engaged. And typically, on shrouds, like inner forstays, where they're most often used. There is a ring which is put onto the stay, when the lever is attached to it, & the ring slides down over both the lever & the stay, together. Thus securing things.

As a bit different look at things, my thoughts on raft stowage are a bit out of the ordinary (no I haven't read the linked article yet). Since it's common, when valises are opened to perform maintenance, to find water inside of the case. Which, a fair bit of the time, ruins the raft.
So given that, & the fact that for critical pieces of equipment, you always seem to "find" space, why not build a deck locker, with a lid which seals well, & a couple of built in check valves for drainage. Along with a few stringers in the locker's bottom to keep the raft up above any water which does get into the locker.
Thus, more or less, it's doubly protected from the elements. And it's in a location where you have at least some chance of holding onto it when things have gone FUBAR, as opposed to having it on, say, the cabin top.

On a Monohull, there's typically room for such a thing somewhere in the cockpit footwell. And it keeps the raft handy, as well as allowing you to both secure it to the vessel, & rig it for release or not, as you see fit.
Plus it makes it easy to secure the raft when in port, simply by throwing a padlock onto the locker.


PS: For any tie downs used to secure it, I'd suggest Spectra - webbing, & cordage. The webbing having been sewn with UV & heat resistant threat. Heat resistant, as thread can get REAL hot going through a sewing machine, & that damages Spectra a lot. And try & avoid stitching things so fast that you get a hot needle, as it'll do in the webbing too.
And as to the rope, some double braid version, with a polyester cover would be advisable. So that the cover holds knots well, while the Spectra fights off the UV.
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Old 08-04-2015, 00:51   #10
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

These are custom made and expensive but do the job

NIRO PETERSEN KATALOG 2013

The holder is bolted on to your railing and hinged. There is a lever opening handle which can have a lock inserted (for when you are in port). simply open the lever and the raft will fall out into the water.

how expnesive - along the lines of $1200 usd
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Old 08-04-2015, 03:36   #11
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

How about the old fashioned way with straps and buckle?

I prefer to lash our raft (which sits on chocks) with 6 mm line after the stitching on the webbing failed. I figured if I haven't got time to untie or cut with a knife, I haven't got time to launch the raft. I'm not worried about it being self releasing and if I was I'd install a purpose made hydrostatic release: H20 Solas Model - CM Hammar
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Old 08-04-2015, 08:42   #12
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A better way to secure the liferaft

Thanks again for the input. I'm leaning toward webbing straps and buckles, one each side. My main concern is the buckles need to be bulletproof. Can't loosen accidentally and can be undone under load. I will use at least two, one each side and probably a third in the centre as well.
Liferaft location and fastening is very boat specific, as referenced in that great article posted earlier. For us on a catamaran the two main scenarios where it might be deployed are fire and capsize. So for us a cradle or deck arrangement wouldn't likely work as well as on a mono as there would be a chance it could be stuck under the upturned hull. I do think those stainless fold down rail mounted models look excellent for a mono, especially if space is limited on the foredeck.
I'll take a look for straps next time I'm in a chandler. I have a few different types on board but I don't know if I would trust this type of buckle as it has moving parts. Maybe a broken spring inside would decapacitat it. Anyone have re commendations for bulletproof buckles?
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Old 08-04-2015, 09:24   #13
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

Quote:
Originally Posted by monte View Post
Thanks again for the input. I'm leaning toward webbing straps and buckles, one each side. My main concern is the buckles need to be bulletproof. Can't loosen accidentally and can be undone under load. I will use at least two, one each side and probably a third in the centre as well.
Liferaft location and fastening is very boat specific, as referenced in that great article posted earlier. For us on a catamaran the two main scenarios where it might be deployed are fire and capsize. So for us a cradle or deck arrangement wouldn't likely work as well as on a mono as there would be a chance it could be stuck under the upturned hull. I do think those stainless fold down rail mounted models look excellent for a mono, especially if space is limited on the foredeck.
I'll take a look for straps next time I'm in a chandler. I have a few different types on board but I don't know if I would trust this type of buckle as it has moving parts. Maybe a broken spring inside would decapacitat it. Anyone have re commendations for bulletproof buckles?
Attachment 100125
When I had my liferaft re-certified last year, I noticed the same company [westpacmarine.com] sold 316 stainless buckles for 1" webbing and made custom straps for any use. ["No minimum orders..."]

They were great to deal with and really know their stuff since they mainly deal with commercial vessels, but enjoy helping recreational boaters too...

Cheers!
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Old 08-04-2015, 09:38   #14
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

There must be more than one design of pelican hooks. Test some, then pick up the best. I have seen pelican hooks coming undone. I guess this may happen then the tension is removed and when the hook is mounted upside down, or horizontal.

PS Well sewn webbing should not fail: the webbing loops over itself before being sewn longitudinally with UV resistant polyester thread - very similar to how tethers and lifting straps are manufactured.

Spectra shackles may (in some applications) substitute pelican hooks. See if a purpose spliced Spectra shackle could find any use in your project.

So many ways to skin a cat. Oops. ;-)

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Old 08-04-2015, 16:40   #15
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Re: A better way to secure the liferaft

From your description it sounds like you're asking about a Johnson Lever. They're often used on the forestay of trailerable sailboats.

Johnson Quick Release Levers - Quick Release Levers - Rig Adjustment & Tuning - Sailboat Hardware & Rigging - Downwind Marine
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