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Old 04-10-2014, 09:05   #16
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

^^ I have emptied the boat into boxes stacked in a shed. I just looked, thinking perhaps I left one harness on board, but they are all boxed. I will dig one out and take a photo, but I don't think I will be at the shed for perhaps 10 days (until after the Annapolis show).

I do sometimes wear one that is simply two 10mm dyneema slings cow hitched together (at the back). You put your arms thru it and a little cord tie in the front to hold it tight. It is super light, and I think would catch most boat 'falls' on board, but it would not be terrific to be dragged over board in - thin straps and no leg loops. My 'Volvo spec' one would is 'better', but more involved to put on and to wear.
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Old 04-10-2014, 10:51   #17
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

I dug the custom harness out.

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I use soft shackles as the regular connection point, and have two different length soft shackles for two different clothing configurations. But if I am going to wear it for days and sleep in it, I use a lashing, as that eliminates the soft shackle stopper knot.
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Old 04-10-2014, 11:07   #18
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

Evans, could you provide a little more detail on the dyneema to nylon webbing attachment? I like this idea a lot!
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Old 04-10-2014, 11:21   #19
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

^^ I cannot claim to be any sort of expert on this . . . . .so this is simply what I use, rather than any sort of 'expert' recommendation . . . . but:

#1 My sewing testing suggested bar tacks were the way to go for web attachment strength.

#2 I believe most all the load will be contained within the chest band. So it's end loops are the most important. In the one above there are three 'bar tacks' plus a heavy square box.

#3 The shoulder and crotch strap connections are simple long bar tacks. They could be made stronger by looping around the chest band but that adds a bit of bulk, and my understanding of the ISAF specs and load situation is that it is not needed.

I should note that I believe the volvo one's were all dyneema, including the chest band. But my sense from my discussions with thinwater and my drop tests is that some elasticity in the main load band may be desirable (but I am not sure how much it really matters).

The whole thing is unbelievably light.
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Old 04-10-2014, 16:35   #20
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

Just thinking about the construction . . . .

If you used 3mm (or so) dyneema cord for the shoulder straps and crotch strap, you could splice the end in loops around the chest band, and then just hand sew tack them in place to the chest band (so the loops don't slide back and forth). That would be stronger than what I have done and easier. It might be a hair less comfortable but I doubt it would be much noticeable. But you still need a sewing machine to make the end loops on the chest band.

If you wanted to entirely do away with the machine sewing altogether, you could make that chest band of 6mm dyneema cord (so the entire thing is spliced cord rather than sewn webbing). That would be very strong very light, and very easy for anyone to make with no special tools at all. It would be less comfortable to fall on than my wide chest band, but probably plenty safe. This could also be made more adjustable than my sewn version because you could use 'whoppii sling loops' in say one end (the front) of the crotch strap and the should straps.
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Old 04-10-2014, 17:20   #21
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

^^ Just opinions...

Two slings cow hitched will almost certainly slide over your shoulders. I've done that big wall climbing, to help position an ascender, and it is not secure, at least not on me. But it is minimalist, since I have the slings with me and thus they cost zero weight.

Dyneema makes very little sense to me in this application, at least not if it is worn over thin clothes; if the line requires strength, it requires width, and there is no member that will not be strong enough in nylon webbing IF it is wide enough not to produce injury. Put another way, nylon line can cut you, Dyneema can cut through you. So decide what the load is, and if you think you need 5000 pound stock, think about what 5000 pounds on a steel cable will feel like. The reality is that, except for the chest band (rules) you don't need nearly that strength (maybe on the shoulders, but like an eye-splice, there are 2). Heaven help, all jokes aside, you if you take 5000 pounds on the other strap; you'll a full body harness, but that is a different topic and is not my opinion.

No, I don't think stretch matters at all in this. The energy absorption will come from deformation (squishing) of the body. No 1 1/2 - 2" webbing will stretch enough under load to matter.

I use very similar hand-sewn harness, non-adjustable and light to be worn all day. The main difference is that I use light (not tubular) 1" polyester webbing for shoulders; fall headlong and the load on the shoulders will be material. The chest strap must be 1 1/2" minimum by any accepted standard. Other details are similar.

If I were desperate to save weight, I would seek thin webbing for all but the chest band. It is the critical part.

I like the soft shackle or lashing idea, except for one thing, and perhaps this issue is somewhat unique to me. I like having a metal ring that the tether clips cleanly to. I tend to clip on and off tethers a lot, and shackle would be floppy. I use a locking biner as both closure and clipping point. I gotta think on that one.

I also clip around the back of the harness sometimes, typically landing a big fish. However, there are other places on-deck where that works well.
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Old 04-10-2014, 20:24   #22
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

Quote:
Originally Posted by carstenb View Post
WE use this one: Spinlock. All the weight is on your shoulders, not your neck so basically you don't feel it at all - even after a long watch

https://www.spinlock.co.uk/en/catego...vest-5d-hammar

I don't know if they are USCG approved - they have all the approvals in the EU

EDIT: it apprears that the spinlock deckvest lite is USCG approved (from their website)
I know several folks who use Spinlocks and love them. I personaally do not like the cow hitched tether.

I use a Mustang HIT with harness and a West Marine tether. I carry a MagLite (red lens)and Wichard rigging knife in a pouch.
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Old 12-11-2014, 13:30   #23
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

I'm making my own harness due to reasons listed above. It is a bit more challenging due to my physique. Thanks to thinwater and estarzinger for their great work in load testing and such.

As far as the leg straps- having an improperly fitted harness, you can slip out. Add a leg strap to an improperly fitted harness can cause serious damage. I took out the photo in the attachment, way too graphic, but food for thought.
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Old 22-11-2014, 16:33   #24
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

Sorry for the lengthy delay in response to my original post. Been traveling for the past 3-4 months. I used a harness my sister made out of seat belt webbing for many years but unfortunately sold it when we bought our Sospenders inflatable harness.

I have a Henri Loyd offshore jacket with a built in harness which I love but this is a heavy weight jacket and hotter than heck in the tropics. I want something to wear either over a tee shirt or no shirt at all. Secondly I do not want the weight of a Sospenders cartridge harness that kills my neck at the end of a watch.

Will look at the various suggestions folks submitted.

Thank you

Regards to all

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Old 22-11-2014, 17:39   #25
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

Another idea no-one's mentioned, but which I use almost exclusively both for rockclimbing and sailing. A piece of 2" tubular nylon webbing knotted around the waist with a water knot. In the days when climbers tried not to spend all their time hanging in their gear, this was the standard harness, called a "Swami Belt". Not sure how it would work for folks bigger about the waist than elsewhere, but it eliminates a lot of hamper around the chest and neck, is easy to get into, absolutely foolproof, and can be slept in. The leash is girth-hitched on, and can be slid to the side or behind as need requires. You could use seat-belt webbing, 2" polypropylene, canvas, just about anything that comes to hand. After all, as I've pointed out elsewhere, before you break even the webbing purloined from a lawn chair it will cut you in two. The Swami has the added advantage that you can put it on over your bibs but lead the leash under your jacket. Try it out.
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Old 22-11-2014, 18:18   #26
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Re: Suggestions for safety harness pls?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Whatever you buy, whether it is a PFD or just a harness, don't buy anything without crotch straps. We know already since the '79 Fastnet disaster that life jackets or harnesses without crotch straps are practically useless. Imagine a parachute which you put on just around your waist -- that's the same idea as a life jacket without crotch straps.
This is a widely accepted half truth.
a. Kayak PFDs don't come off. Thus, it is not crotch straps but overall design.
b. Chest harnesses don't come off climbers. It is because sailors wear the harness loosely fitted over weather gear">foul weather gear. Obviously they come off.

The problems are:
a. The chest strap for inflatables are far too high and they lack stiffness.
b. The chest strap is far too low for proper harness fit (needs to be in the fit--but you can't serve 2 masters).
c. Nothing fits properly over thick, wet foul weather gear. This is not too important in the tropics, and can be solved by integrating the harness or wearing under the gear.

In other words, only half true.


---


As for cow hitched tethers, even if quick release is not important, I don't like them. Sometimes I get on the wrong side of something and need to clip around; often the harness end is closer and safe enough to release for just a moment.
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Old 22-11-2014, 19:01   #27
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Re: Suggestions for Safety Harness Please?

I use a generic Singing Rock rock-climbing harness, with leg straps. Nice wide, comfortable leg straps. After about ten minutes of hanging from the rigging, you start to appreciate those! But I do a different kind of sailing from most here. On passages on smaller boats, I have no problem with the inflatable style shoulder harnesses.
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