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Old 08-06-2013, 23:47   #1
Jd1
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Heaving line for lifebuoy

I am replacing my polypropylene heaving line which is contained in a small bag. It obviously ties onto the lifebuoy on one side but I am wondering about the other side. The bag has a clip on the bottom that steadies the bag but the line is not actually tied to the bag (but there are provisions for tying if so desired). I have a monohull sailboat and the lifebuoy is attached to the very back starboard side pullpit with the line bag attached to the back pullpit rail. Any person going for an unintentional swim will be rescued (in my mind) from the cockpit. The concept of leaving a line that gets thrown out unattached strikes me about as brilliant as leaving anchor rode unattached. I guess there is however something to be said as far as flexibility is concerned if the line is not attached in that you can move to the best spot on the boat but again, in a panic, will a person remember to hold on to the loose end ?

What do you guys do ?
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Old 08-06-2013, 23:54   #2
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

I remember to hold on. You shake out a few feet before you throw the bag. It's the throwing that you may screw up. You can look pretty silly if it does not go right.
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Old 09-06-2013, 02:26   #3
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

The line shouldn't be attached to the boat. The idea of the floating line is to give the MOB a chance to grab the lifering without having to swim too far as well as a method to retrieve them without running them over. Imagine sailing at 6 knots and someone falls over. The crew throw the ring and it drags along behind the boat away from the MOB. make sure you have a an automatic flashing light attached as well.
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Old 09-06-2013, 04:53   #4
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

My LifeSling came with a length of 7/16" double braid spliced into the yellow polypro. When offshore, I lead this tail outside of the rail and attach an 18" orange float. Experimented with this, and in a 4 ft sea can still see the orange float a good 1/4 mile.

I also have a monkeys fist with 150 ft 1/4 poly in the bottom of the Sling bag for snagging Sling line for retrieval
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Old 09-06-2013, 05:33   #5
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jd1 View Post
I am replacing my polypropylene heaving line which is contained in a small bag. It obviously ties onto the lifebuoy on one side but I am wondering about the other side. The bag has a clip on the bottom that steadies the bag but the line is not actually tied to the bag (but there are provisions for tying if so desired). I have a monohull sailboat and the lifebuoy is attached to the very back starboard side pullpit with the line bag attached to the back pullpit rail. Any person going for an unintentional swim will be rescued (in my mind) from the cockpit. The concept of leaving a line that gets thrown out unattached strikes me about as brilliant as leaving anchor rode unattached. I guess there is however something to be said as far as flexibility is concerned if the line is not attached in that you can move to the best spot on the boat but again, in a panic, will a person remember to hold on to the loose end ?

What do you guys do ?

I have enough extra line that it is permanently tied to the pulpit. I think in such an emergency is just when someone might forget that the bitter end wasn't secured, and ... if it's me in the water, the other person might not even realize there was a bitter end. I assume that the thing is only useful if it's useful when used by someone who is panicky, or over-tired, or working in the dark, etc.
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Old 09-06-2013, 06:10   #6
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

I am using an old Amsteel halyard, and it's tied to the boat
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Old 09-06-2013, 06:20   #7
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

No poly on my horseshoe buoy but it does have a strobe. The idea is to get the horseshoe buoy in the water ASAP to mark the area that the person went in the water, since it is a lot easier to see the buoy than a relatively small dark head in the water. After coming back I have a throw bag with a line in it that is used to pull the person over to the boat. If the conditions are calm you shouldn't even need that.
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Old 09-06-2013, 07:51   #8
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

The heaving line in a bag is designed to be thrown... not tied to a life buoy, although it could be used that way.

The reason for not securing it to a rail is to allow you to move around the vessel to get to an optimal place to heave it. To avoid having someone forget to hold on I tied a loop in the bitter end, which easily slips over your wrist or other fixed object.

We have used our heaving line several times docking or rafting and found it useful to get a line to someone on the other end.

I agree with DAVID M about the strobe light... Our lifering has a commercial grade strobe life with a 6 foot polypro line spliced to both of them. It would be deployed immediately after some one went into the water to mark there position and give you a reference to sail back to.

I used to crew on a ship in San Francisco Bay (USS Potomac) and performed countless MOB drills with a lifering and strobe. Both in daylight and dark, the strobe light was a good reference to steer too. Off shore a strobe light will be a beacon, even with large waves.

We also carry a lifesling, which has a polypro line to drag it through the water and hopefully get it to the MOB once we have located him, if needed.
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:24   #9
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Re: Heaving line for lifebuoy

I am really glad I asked the question. Seems there are all kinds of ways to deploy both the life-ring as well as the heaving line. I like the idea with the strobe light - I will need to look into getting one.
The one thing I don't understand - there is very little weight to the bag and line - how can you throw that ?? Even if I could make a monkey's fist, it would be very light made out of polypropylene and if made heavier, there is always the risk of it sinking and pulling the heaving line down with it. I suppose one could put a float of some kind at the end of the line.
I can now see the reason for leaving the line on the ring and letting it trail for easier retrieval (with my luck I would foul the prop though).
Who knew there were so many ways of deploying a simple life ring.
Thanks guys !
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