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Old 06-02-2011, 12:25   #46
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P " In general, I think sailors ($500/month crowd aside) have more money than, say, rock climbers and are more willing to spend it."


I've got to say, this is weak reasoning; I'm sorry if these seem like harsh words, but they are important. Yes, some climbers are kids, but consider that a trip to Everest is ~$40,000 and guided trips of all sorts (not classes) are ~ $1500/day-person if they are to anywhere worthwhile. Fully geared up for ice climbing, a pair will have spent nearly $4,000 in just gear that they carry, not including tents, camping equipment, and expedition gear if relevant. I climb with doctors and lawyers and I can assure you, money is not a factor. If there were more expensive gear, we would know of it and use it. The truth is, there is very little room to improve upon high-end harnesses, slings, ropes, or biners. They are very close to perfected.


"This is compounded by the relative lack of standards and certifications for sailing gear, as compared with rock climbing gear. If I am shopping for a climbing harness, I can have some level of confidence that it will not fail if it meets the UIAA minimum standards.

If all tethers and jacklines conformed to a common, well though out standard and certification requirements, they would become more of a commodity item, subject to more downward price pressures.
This I agree with. Why is there little low-end climbing equipment? Standards. The UIAA has taken the time to work through the physics of falling. The sailing associations and manufacturer groups have not taken the same time to work through the physics of wave strikes and to explain and publish how the systems work and their reasoning.

I think it is clear that the mountaineering industry has spent a lot more money testing equipment. So, there is the gauntlet. Develop real, comprehensive standards based upon something more than a few
agreed upon numbers on a piece of paper.
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Old 06-02-2011, 13:09   #47
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The problem with industrial grades is that they are uncomfortable. I wore one daily while doing inspections and it wore holes in my coveralls.

Also you'll want one with the D-ring in the front. You don't want to be dragged through the water on your back.

Personally, if your going to buy, I'd go with a climbers harness. They do make a full suit type but they are $300 - $400. But a chest harness is good enough for on deck. Mine's built into my life jacket and that's good enough for me!!!!
Industrial would be a bit much, I use a lightweight climbing sit harness, sometimes for days on end if the wind's up a bit. Can't remember the last time I wore a life jacket - 5 years ago? But most singlehanded so not a lot of point really.
But I really do find it odd that more people here don't use belay devices with a short line, like a gri gri or grillon. Easily tightened so always tight, fall factor close to zero so load on jackstays greatly reduced and best of all - never end up in the water!!!!
Added bonus is when up at the mast - clip off then tighten the strop then lean back into the harness and have 2 hands free. Works a treat. For me anyway.
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Old 06-02-2011, 13:12   #48
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It's always amazing to see how people blame lawyers for most everything yet don't have a shred of information to back up those claims.
I was saddened when Cessna ceased production of it's personal use aircraft, stating that product liability costs as the prime reason.

I know you want a reference therefore, here is a direct quote from Wikipedia and the Cessna entry:
In 1985 Cessna was bought by General Dynamics Corporation and in 1986 production of piston-engine aircraft was suspended. General Dynamics cited product liability as the cause. The then-CEO Russ Meyer said that production would resume if a more favorable product liability environment developed. In 1992, Textron Inc. bought Cessna and, after passage of the General Aviation Revitalization Act of 1994, resumed production of the piston-engine 172, 182, and 206 designs.
Sorry, many blamed the lawyers on that one. It took an act of Congress to get this North American manufacturer back into the market place, one destroyed by spurious liability suits.

I am sure others can find similar instances.
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Old 06-02-2011, 13:20   #49
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Still haven't figured out how to clip off safely when out on the end of the bow platform 6 feet from the bow so as to prevent falling or being washed off the platform. All that I can see is clipping to the lifeline. I don't know that netting under the bowsprit is an answer either, except to keep the jibs from going into the drink. Really cannot get safely forward of the Samson posts, and certainly not out onto the bowsprit. Any suggestions or recommendations?
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Old 06-02-2011, 13:29   #50
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The commercially-available tethers are designed to standards: ISO 12401. ISO 12401 is referenced by the ISAF Offshore Special Regulations (section 5.02), and anyone participating in a sanctioned ocean race needs tethers and harnesses that meet these requirements.

I suspect that the number of ocean racers just isn't large enough to consume the quantities necessary to bring the price down (that and the boat-buck phenomenon). Many (most?) sailors don't use harnesses and tethers. I assume that most serious climbers will use the appropriate equipment.

The ocean racing tether design has evolved through usage and experience. You might quibble with some of the requirements, but in my opinion the end product is a reasonable approach to crew safety.

If you don't need to comply with the rules, you can always buy a budget tether or make your own.

(To be honest, I don't have a clue what ISO 12401 actually says. They charge money for that spec.)
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Old 06-02-2011, 13:45   #51
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Well, I appreciate all this great discussion. Many good thoughts.

I still plan to construct my own out of 5000# 2" webbing, machine sewn with v-92, then oversewn by hand with 5ply waxed sail twine. Design copied from that sold by a major retailer. And I will not be using $70 snap shackles on my tethers.
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Old 06-02-2011, 14:04   #52
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And I will not be using $70 snap shackles on my tethers.
Do pay attention to the harness-end of the tether.

The racing rules require a shackle that can be quickly released under load. This type of shackle does increase the odds of accidental release, but there are numerous accounts of tethered crewmembers being towed to their death because they couldn't disconnect (and couldn't breathe). People continue to argue about the merits of the quick-release, but at least be aware of the issue.

As for the other end, I hope you don't even consider the simple no-lock carabiner. Those unclip from a padeye without even trying. Some design are better than others, but please use something with a lock.
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Old 06-02-2011, 14:08   #53
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I've got to say, this is weak reasoning; I'm sorry if these seem like harsh words, but they are important. Yes, some climbers are kids, but consider that a trip to Everest is ~$40,000 and guided trips of all sorts (not classes) are ~ $1500/day-person if they are to anywhere worthwhile. Fully geared up for ice climbing, a pair will have spent nearly $4,000 in just gear that they carry, not including tents, camping equipment, and expedition gear if relevant. I climb with doctors and lawyers and I can assure you, money is not a factor. If there were more expensive gear, we would know of it and use it. The truth is, there is very little room to improve upon high-end harnesses, slings, ropes, or biners. They are very close to perfected
I think expedition style climbing accounts for only a small fraction of the activity. While I don't doubt that some doctors and lawyers engage in climbing, the physical demands favor generally younger people, often college students or young professionals. If the prices for all climbing gear rose to the level that people find acceptable for marine equipment, I think many would drop out. The REI coop was formed precisely to ensure the availability of affordable gear to allow people of modest means to participate.

There is also the segment of the climbing market (expeditions, semi-pros, and the higher income crowd), for whom cost is not a consideration. It is catered to by boutique retailers selling top of the line gear, which is often as expensive as the equivalent marine gear (for the same reason-inelastic demand). But you still have the alternative of the very good (and in most cases, just as safe) gear marketed to the more typical recreational climber.
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Old 06-02-2011, 14:09   #54
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Do pay attention to the harness-end of the tether.

The racing rules require a shackle that can be quickly released under load. This type of shackle does increase the odds of accidental release, but there are numerous accounts of tethered crewmembers being towed to their death because they couldn't disconnect (and couldn't breathe). People continue to argue about the merits of the quick-release, but at least be aware of the issue.

As for the other end, I hope you don't even consider the simple no-lock carabiner. Those unclip from a padeye without even trying. Some design are better than others, but please use something with a lock.
I believe the racing rules "suggest" a releasable hook, but check me on that.

1" tubular climbing webbing is probably a better choice; it has been the safe standard in the mountains for 40 years.
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Old 06-02-2011, 14:25   #55
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Small volumes and lawsuit potential = high cost + enough profit for the aggro involved.

Why they sell? Cos' enough folks equate spending more money with more safety.
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Old 06-02-2011, 14:29   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodhound View Post
Still haven't figured out how to clip off safely when out on the end of the bow platform 6 feet from the bow so as to prevent falling or being washed off the platform. All that I can see is clipping to the lifeline. I don't know that netting under the bowsprit is an answer either, except to keep the jibs from going into the drink. Really cannot get safely forward of the Samson posts, and certainly not out onto the bowsprit. Any suggestions or recommendations?
i sit on mine-- is see thru and makes my brane not like it-- so i sit. one leg over each side,toes on bobstay--am working on an idea for a double tether there -- one from each side-- would work forward of forestaysail stay. i would also like to see the pulpit back to the solid part of the deck instead of just a taste on the sprit. makes one rely too much on that which i was taught never to trust-- lifelines-- they fail. stanchions fail. nicely welded pulpits tend to fail less frequently than do the single stanchions, and are good for tethers.

as for lawyers-- lawyers are the reason we have most incredibly high prices and extraneous laws and regulations AND OSHA-- All voted in by lawyers. ye think our legislature and senate are made of non law oriented folks?? lawyers. . thankyou.(bows) also, lobbyists are mostly lawyers.(bows again)
yes, some of my best friends are lawyers.
this is stuff that is easily researchable--i am sure someone has asked how many of the lawmakers we have are non lawyers-- have fun!!!


(i WAS nice--i didnt say anything about the slick following these friends' boats when they are sailing....)
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Old 06-02-2011, 14:43   #57
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Do pay attention to the harness-end of the tether.

The racing rules require a shackle that can be quickly released under load. This type of shackle does increase the odds of accidental release, but there are numerous accounts of tethered crewmembers being towed to their death because they couldn't disconnect (and couldn't breathe). People continue to argue about the merits of the quick-release, but at least be aware of the issue.

As for the other end, I hope you don't even consider the simple no-lock carabiner. Those unclip from a padeye without even trying. Some design are better than others, but please use something with a lock.
As was suggested by Thinwater, I'm looking at the locking carbiners used by climbers. As for the shackle, I'm certain I can get good quality for less than $70. Even if I do end up paying that much, the overall cost of the harness/tether will be much less than retail, plus I will know and trust the quality, because I won't be bored or distracted while I'm making it, as a factory worker might just due to endless repetition. And I tend to trust the quality of my own craftmanship.
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Old 06-02-2011, 16:13   #58
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As was suggested by Thinwater, I'm looking at the locking carbiners used by climbers.
As also mentioned by Thinwater, locking climbing biners are great if you are very dilligent in protecting them from corrosion. Otherwise they will lock up in no time. Unfortunately, while climbing gear is generally very well designed and safe, it is not always well suited to use in salt water environment.

Wichard makes a beautiful stainless locking biner at 10x the price of equivalent climbing item. The main difference is corrosion resistance.
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Old 06-02-2011, 17:35   #59
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I believe the racing rules "suggest" a releasable hook, but check me on that.
As I read the new (and previous) version of the ISAF OSR it does appear that you are correct: the easily-releasable under load shackle is a recommendation, not a requirement.

For what it's worth, racing or not, I think it's a good idea.
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Old 06-02-2011, 17:47   #60
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http://offshore.ussailing.org/Assets...ea+Studies.pdf

Lots of info here on harnesses and tethers tested.
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