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Old 14-01-2014, 10:19   #1
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DIY lifelines

I want to redo my lifelines. I have a bunch of ss wire at my disposal and all of the old turnbuckles from my old life lines. Every time I google Swaging machine I just get the crummy Home Depot thing you use to crimp fitting onto wire. Is a Swaging tool even what I want? What is the actual tool you use to make lifelines and how can I find the threaded ends for a swaged on turnbuckle?

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Old 14-01-2014, 11:06   #2
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Re: DIY lifelines

Try Googling on Wire Rope Crimping Tools. I've seen the Ormiston tool used, by an amateur, and the long lever handled ones by riggers.

Hope this helps.


Ann & Jim, U.S. s/v Insatiable II, SE Qld, for a while
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Old 14-01-2014, 11:20   #3
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Re: DIY lifelines

Swager | Hand Swager | Cable Swager

Or you can buy mechanical fittings from suncor that are re-useable. No need for swaging.

Quick Attach™ Lifeline Kit w/ Gate - Closed Body
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Old 14-01-2014, 11:30   #4
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Re: DIY lifelines

or better yet use the swageless mechanical terminals. Costly but you only buy once.
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Old 14-01-2014, 11:37   #5
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Re: DIY lifelines

Or flog off the stainless wire and go to Dyneema. I sure like ours, and no machinery or expensive fittings are needed. The splices are dead simple and quick to do, and all in all, it's a doddle to set up your lifelines.



PS In the states, the swaging tool is often called a Nico Press.
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Old 14-01-2014, 12:25   #6
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Re: DIY lifelines

Nicopress is the most well known brand of pressed terminals you can do yourself. The other kind are the large, ridiculously expensive machines in a rigger's shop...

But I'd also go with Dyneema or webbing if I had the choice... Easier to handle, lighter.

But if you can't hold yourself, it's also possible to splice SS wire . Just read about it in "the complete rigger's apprentice"; not very hard apparently, but takes some practice to get good ones .
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Old 14-01-2014, 13:08   #7
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Re: DIY lifelines

I have seen that splice done on a ski lift..... At the end of the day you could not tell where the splice was..... It looks to me as an art
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Old 14-01-2014, 13:16   #8
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Re: DIY lifelines

Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post

PS In the states, the swaging tool is often called a Nico Press.

That is exactly what they are called for aircraft control cables, some aircraft mechanics have them if you know any
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Old 14-01-2014, 13:48   #9
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Re: DIY lifelines

I used flexible 1/4" 7x7 SS wire cable, stainless thimbles, and Nicopress swages. I used an inexpensive tool that worked by tightening two bolts to squeeze the fitting between two molds. The cables are then lashed in place between the thimbles and pulpit/pushpit. This is strong, durable, reliable and cheap. Having had professionally installed roller-swaged fittings fail I cannot recommend them. Cone fittings (Sta-Lok are my favorites) are great but expensive.

I don't have experience using Dyneema but I would consider it when/if I need to replace the lifelines (now 15 years old).

Edit: I cannot recommend using turnbuckles for the lifelines - I have had them seize up in the tropics. The lashings perform that function; they should be replaced occasionally.

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Old 14-01-2014, 14:12   #10
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Re: DIY lifelines

There is a dedicated line by New England Ropes: WR2, (Wire Rope replacement) it's a covered HMPE

Wish someone would make a lightweight pelican hook. Stainless is pretty heavy….
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Old 14-01-2014, 15:04   #11
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Re: DIY lifelines

All of our lifelines are Norseman re-usable fittings. No swaging.

Norseman Swageless Terminals

There are other makers of equivalent terminals. They fit specific cable layups so make sure you have the right ones.

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