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Old 04-05-2012, 18:14   #16
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Being an irresposible idiot I use neither... but if you are going to use a tether I reckon common sense dictates an automatic PFD as well... tethers have been known to break under load..
Where can I find this information of tethers breaking under load? I rely on my tether and paid good money for the best to keep me safe and on board.
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Old 04-05-2012, 19:44   #17
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

I personally believe you are not an idiot boatman, but rather have accepted that if you fall off during passage you will die. That is most likely true for the rest of us, but we haven't accepted it yet.
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Old 04-05-2012, 20:44   #18
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
I think it is most comfortable to have stand alone harnesses for calm days and especially so in the tropics.

We have tethers with two hooks: one long, one short, no snapshackle; in retrospective, I would buy the same stuff except I like better the kind where the longer tether is of the 'expandable' design.

We use the tethers:
- always in bad weather,
- always at night,
- in rolly / iffy conditions.

b.


Yes, people wear harness-only. I do. However, I clip religiously and I have a better jackline system than most. I single hand a lot and am realistic about the usefulness of a PFD in December; zero.

No, well designed tether systems do not break. However, not many sailors understand tethers and impact:
Sail Delmarva: The Case for Softer Tethers
http://sail-delmarva.blogspot.com/20...jack-line.html

I've heard folks say you can slide out of a harness. Not if it is fitted correctly and you have shoulders. If worn loose over layers of clothing... well that's just stupid, but it is common.

Try climbing back on, even with help, with an inflated PFD, or even with an uninflated PFD. Much more difficult. Some are built such that the quick-release is obscured when inflated. How many have tried both going over the side on a tether and recovery? It's an eye-opener. Many people's "plan" work.

Most inflatable PFDs place the chest band in the right place for a PFD but too low for a harness. They aren't logically the same, are they?

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Buying all the gear is great... not. Unless you are going to test inflate, go over the rail, and be recovered, what do you really know?

The funny thing is that rock climbers use their safety gear and thus test it regularly, while sailors only wear it and talk about it, and so many designs and plans are half-a__. Few really use it, and then often in conditions so terrible that learning is difficult; surviving is more important. The evolution of understanding has been disapointingly slow.
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Old 05-05-2012, 04:43   #19
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

Here's an issue that many haven't thought about.

If you use a standard carabiner to attach yourself to a padeye, which you might do while in the cockpit, it can release itself if the gate gets pulled against the padeye while lying flat, and over the side you go! Try it. Hook onto a padeye, lay the carabiner flat on the deck, and rotate the smaller end so the gate comes in contact with one leg of the padeye. Keep rotating and watch the gate open up. This could conceivably happen as the carabiner contacts the padeye at the end of a jackline.

The solution is to use a double safety carabiner, such as the one made by Wichard. It can be opened with one hand, but you have to squeeze the yellow lever/grip and press the gate at the same time. Expensive, but foolproof.
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Old 05-05-2012, 05:28   #20
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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Originally Posted by Hud3 View Post
Here's an issue that many haven't thought about.

If you use a standard carabiner to attach yourself to a padeye, which you might do while in the cockpit, it can release itself if the gate gets pulled against the padeye while lying flat, and over the side you go! Try it. Hook onto a padeye, lay the carabiner flat on the deck, and rotate the smaller end so the gate comes in contact with one leg of the padeye. Keep rotating and watch the gate open up. This could conceivably happen as the carabiner contacts the padeye at the end of a jackline.

The solution is to use a double safety carabiner, such as the one made by Wichard. It can be opened with one hand, but you have to squeeze the yellow lever/grip and press the gate at the same time. Expensive, but foolproof.
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But it cant be undone under load.
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Old 05-05-2012, 05:34   #21
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

Why would you need to? My tether has a snap shackle at the harness end.
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Old 05-05-2012, 05:47   #22
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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Why would you need to? My tether has a snap shackle at the harness end.
Then thats Ok. Just in your post there was no mention of the snap shackle,
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Old 05-05-2012, 06:12   #23
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Being an irresposible idiot I use neither... but if you are going to use a tether I reckon common sense dictates an automatic PFD as well... tethers have been known to break under load..
Better the tether than your ribs ... just look up the breaking load of plain tubular webbing.

The automatic pfd is OK but I know many drivers who deactivate the auto.

Another point is, on a hot day, any pfd around your neck is a pain in the () neck;-). So I say have the auto toys but also carry a plain webbing harness for those hot and not too rolly days.

b.
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Old 05-05-2012, 06:17   #24
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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But it cant be undone under load.
+1!

But then again the snap shackle can be opened accidentally ;-).

There is no one better system, just our choices.

b.
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:38   #25
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

I don't understand why you'd want to be able to open the carabiner on the end of the tether while it's under load. If you're dangling on the opposite end, you couldn't reach it anyway.

By the way, the Wichard double safety carabiner can be opened with one hand, just like a standard carabiner.
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:03   #26
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

As for accidental auto-inflation, the "Hydrostatic" designs don't trigger unless completely immersed -- they use a pressure-sensitive trigger.

The older "dissolving tablet" designs will indeed trigger if they become wet from spray or splashing. They are protected from casual spray exposure but if you get drenched they can trigger. They can also trigger if they aren't regularly replaced, since the humidity will slowly eat away at the trigger element. It's sort of like an aspirin tablet.

As for using regular non-locking carabiners -- don't! As has been mentioned, they really do open very easily when hooked to a padeye. It's pretty amazing how easily they open...

Much of this is discussed in the Offshore Special Regulations I linked to in my first post.
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:08   #27
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
Better the tether than your ribs ... just look up the breaking load of plain tubular webbing.

The automatic pfd is OK but I know many drivers who deactivate the auto.

Another point is, on a hot day, any pfd around your neck is a pain in the () neck;-). So I say have the auto toys but also carry a plain webbing harness for those hot and not too rolly days.

b.
I might be willing to break a rib, if it meant I remained attached to the boat.

Regarding PFD comfort, you really need to try on a few different designs. Some are more comfortable than others, and this is going to depend somewhat on body type.
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:27   #28
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

When using a tether, the end connected to the harness should have a "snap shackle" that can be release under load, similar to headsail clew. This is necessary in event you need to part ways with the boat ( ie sinking). When single handing, I trail a 100' polyester line (floats) with a large loop at the end from the stern and keep the boarding ladder deployed.n
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:32   #29
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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When using a tether, the end connected to the harness should have a "snap shackle" that can be release under load, similar to headsail clew. This is necessary in event you need to part ways with the boat ( ie sinking). When single handing, I trail a 100' polyester line (floats) with a large loop at the end from the stern and keep the boarding ladder deployed.n
Have you considered using a bungee cord and trigger-cord on your trailing line, that would disable your autopilot or windvane when you are being towed? I understand that it is virtually impossible to pull yourself back to the boat if you are going faster than a couple of knots. Disabling the autopilot should cause the boat to head up into the wind and stop, or do circles.
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:47   #30
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Re: Life Jacket While Tethered?

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Have you considered using a bungee cord and trigger-cord on your trailing line, that would disable your autopilot .
Great idea! During practice MOB drills, I have hauled myself back at about 5 kts, and it was brutal...
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