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Old 16-08-2013, 09:34   #16
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

Ann, what method do you prefer? Just curious.
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Old 16-08-2013, 09:47   #17
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

Ever notice how some cotter pins are easy to bend while others are very stiff? I am talking about brand new ones bought from marine stores or rigging suppliers. Then there are the too long ones or the nice short ones. All cotter pins are not created equal, I never know just which ones to buy, usually I just go for an assortment
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Old 16-08-2013, 10:10   #18
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

I used rings on the turnbuckles one two boats. I was dumbfounded when I discovered that they had twisted into a figure 8! If you try them, only do it if you have large enough holes to put very heavy ones in. They might be fine on a simple pin, but avoid them on turnbuckles!
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Old 16-08-2013, 11:17   #19
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

So when you guys say split ring are you talking about the kind they sell at west marine next to the cotter pins? Because I can easily see how the end of those would snag and twist. But I'm more curious about key rings. Once you put them on they close tight and short of the end of a line slipping through the circle (and what are the odds of that happening) I don't see how they could snag on anything.

Cheechako, did they twist because of torsion on the turnbuckles? Because I hadn't thought of that.
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Old 16-08-2013, 11:39   #20
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

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Originally Posted by david7 View Post
So when you guys say split ring are you talking about the kind they sell at west marine next to the cotter pins? Because I can easily see how the end of those would snag and twist. But I'm more curious about key rings. Once you put them on they close tight and short of the end of a line slipping through the circle (and what are the odds of that happening) I don't see how they could snag on anything.

Cheechako, did they twist because of torsion on the turnbuckles? Because I hadn't thought of that.
Yes, they twisted evidently due to torsion. It amazed me actually. The problem is that on open body turnbuckles the pin goes thru the hole drilled in the end of each screw. To get a circular shape thru the hole instead of a straight shape, you may have to go smaller in cross section for a ring rather than a cotter pin.... because the arc has to go through. Hope this makes sense.... I suppose one could drill out the hole bigger in the screw and try heavier rings....
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Old 16-08-2013, 12:00   #21
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

I use rings on some clevis pins, but use cotter pins any place where a sheet might snag. I've had rings get snagged and pulled open. The dab of silicone sealer on the cotter pin end keeps the pin from drawing blood, and I suppose helps secure it a bit.

Another option for turnbuckles is small bolts with nyloc nuts. If you adjust standing rigging tension the bolt/nut makes it easy and there are no sharp ends.

One reason for using slightly-splayed cotter pins is that they are easy to pull if you lose your mast and need to free the rigging. I hope to never take advantage of this feature.
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Old 16-08-2013, 12:45   #22
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

Cotter pin/split pin, UK/USA, two nations separated by a common language

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Old 16-08-2013, 12:58   #23
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

Cotter pin/split pin, UK/USA, two nations separated by a common language

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Old 16-08-2013, 12:59   #24
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Apologies on the correction, as a Canadian I am once again stuck in the middle with "split" loyalties.
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Old 16-08-2013, 14:14   #25
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

Down at the turnbuckle ends... Read somewhere about a cruiser who bored and "tapped" those factory-made holes then installed threaded bolts. Article didn't mention if he used self-locking nuts. Just a thought.

But for the rigging on our boat I use plain old electric tape on cotter pins. That's less expensive than using rigging tape, doesn't last as long, and sort of forces me to inspect the junction when I replace the tape. That helps address at least one "out of sight, out of mind" situation.

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Old 16-08-2013, 14:34   #26
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

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Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post

One reason for using slightly-splayed cotter pins is that they are easy to pull if you lose your mast and need to free the rigging. I hope to never take advantage of this feature.
Sadly, I can vouch for the accuracy of this idea!

When we were dismasted in our previous yacht I was able to pull all the necessary cotter (split) pins, knock out the clevis pins and then jettison the mess of mast and rigging and sails. All in the dark of night and with a fair sea running. Would have been difficult to cut the wire under those conditions (big wire, only mediocre cutting tools). In this case, I pulled all the pins which left the mess hanging by the staysail and main sheets, and was able to check that all was clear before cutting the two lines (easy under great tension).

Don't try this at home!

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Old 16-08-2013, 15:15   #27
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

Bluestocking,

Split pins (cotter pins), short leg opened 15 deg. When possible, with the rig unloaded, so you can orient the pins in the least likely way to scrag you. We do not tape, we want to be able to visually inspect those puppies. Do not use silicone, either, because of the possibility of hidden crevice corrosion, once the water finds a way in.

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Old 16-08-2013, 15:21   #28
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

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Bluestocking,

Split pins (cotter pins), short leg opened 15 deg. When possible, with the rig unloaded, so you can orient the pins in the least likely way to scrag you. We do not tape, we want to be able to visually inspect those puppies. Do not use silicone, either, because of the possibility of hidden crevice corrosion, once the water finds a way in.

Ann
Ok Ann, we are on the same page. I was referring to cutting the cotter pins so that there was not an excess, which would likely foul any lines.
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Old 16-08-2013, 15:40   #29
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Re: Why Cotter Pins

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Bluestocking,

Split pins (cotter pins), [...] Do not use silicone, either, because of the possibility of hidden crevice corrosion, once the water finds a way in.
The pins I've siliconed just have a dab on the ends, so any corrosion won't be on a load-bearing spot.
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Old 16-08-2013, 16:34   #30
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I question the validity of cotter pin etc at all...really do you think this flimsy bit of metal would stop a rod from turning in a turnbuckle? Do we just do this out of convention? I know it will keep a castle nut from turning, but that is a very diff set up from the typical open turnbuckle. A loaded bit of rigging that decides to turn I think will fold over the typical cotter pin like butter (maybe the least of your worries at that point).
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