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Old 05-10-2014, 18:19   #16
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Re: Death Lines!

For me, sailboat lifelines are most useful while crawling/skooting on the deck. Most have little use while standing being so low and unsubstantial.

Most of my sailing was on boats without lifelines (28.5-foot Columbia Defender sloop and 24-foot Bluewater Blackwatch cutter).
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Old 05-10-2014, 18:32   #17
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Re: Death Lines!

Wow, just remove them for a sail, and while out walk forward and you will see how much you really rely on them being there. You will be surprised how your mind process the absence. Scary without them even at the dock.

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Old 05-10-2014, 18:34   #18
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Re: Death Lines!

I sailed with an old guy that called them that. I think of them more as a visual or conceptual boundary, worked so far. Am regularly amazed at all the stuff that manages to stay on deck. Bolts, Dorade cowlings, skipper... no really one bouncy day the gooseneck came loose, dropped directly downwards, stayed under the mast until I found an easier stabler point of sail and wedged it back in. Glad I didn't really know just how close to some rocks... never mind...
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Old 05-10-2014, 18:40   #19
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Re: Death Lines!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailingcouple13 View Post
Wow, just remove them for a sail, and while out walk forward and you will see how much you really rely on them being there. You will be surprised how your mind process the absence. Scary without them even at the dock.
The "safety" is mostly psychological while standing.
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Old 05-10-2014, 19:08   #20
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Re: Death Lines!

I suppose, if one's really lucky to fall against a stantion, life lines "might", work.

In reality, if I wanted the beam-located lifelines to make sense, I'd make sure there were supplemental lines at either 12" or at 8", 16" and 24".

But really, I'd say forget these potential killers and put 18" lifelines on the topsides of the cabin. It would make more sense to rely on something that will actually help hold one "on", the boat. 18 inch stantions then would be a relative 30" high lifeline, and the pulling force would be much better on the hardware.

By all means, I wouls still have a 2+ inch board at the beam to remind me(by feel), where the edge of the boat is.
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Old 05-10-2014, 22:33   #21
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Re: Death Lines!

Don't forget that they aren't just to catch you when you are sliding overboard, they are also something to put your hand on for a bit more stability walking back and forth.

I also find them a psychological barrier. I feel naked and exposed without them.
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Old 05-10-2014, 23:00   #22
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Re: Death Lines!

Life lines saved my bacon. I was delivering the second Mahe36 built, 3am, 60 miles offshore, captain and owner below sleeping, I'm on Helm kicked back enjoying a clear night sky when the helm chair breaks off it's post and I go backwards. Before I can even figure out why I'm on my back I land into the cheap, almost piano wire thin, lifelines. Without them I would have been...well I wouldn't have been.
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Old 05-10-2014, 23:14   #23
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Re: Death Lines!

Helm chairs are sissy cr++p. Best to have a built-in bench seat.
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Old 06-10-2014, 06:24   #24
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Re: Death Lines!

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Originally Posted by SURV69 View Post

By all means, I wouls still have a 2+ inch board at the beam to remind me(by feel), where the edge of the boat is.
YES! that is what I've been using.

On our little boat.. there is sooo little room to pass on either side of the cabin, that I rely HEAVILY on the foot board (I don't know the proper nautical word for that.. sorry.)
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Old 06-10-2014, 06:50   #25
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Re: Death Lines!

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I rely HEAVILY on the foot board (I don't know the proper nautical word for that.. sorry.)
Photos of the O'Day 22 on the net suggest your 'foot board' is perhaps too low to be called a 'bulwark' so it might be better called a 'gunwale'.

A gunwale, pronounced 'gunnel', was originally a wale or plank of timber extending around the top of the sides of a boat. It was used as a gun ridge, a ridge on which a weapon could be mounted or placed.

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Old 06-10-2014, 07:05   #26
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Re: Death Lines!

[QUOTE=scarlet;1646133]
Quote:
Originally Posted by accomplice View Post
Sometimes a few inches makes a big difference. I find 30" lifelines/stanchions can catch an adult, but the 24" ones are most useful for little people.

QUOTE]


I'm a little person. (5' 1") and I have the 24" ones.. they hit me just below the hip...
Oh man... can that be taken out of context...

Quote:
Originally Posted by northoceanbeach View Post
Don't forget that they aren't just to catch you when you are sliding overboard, they are also something to put your hand on for a bit more stability walking back and forth.

I also find them a psychological barrier. I feel naked and exposed without them.
Scarlet...

Many a story here and millions more of how lifelines saved somebody's bacon... Take 'em off, and you'll see exactly what northocean is talking about... just a smidge of support to steady and hand transfer to something solid is worth it's weight in gold plunging overboard...

5'-1 huh??? Excellent boom clearance... +1 ... Carry On!
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Old 06-10-2014, 07:13   #27
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Re: Death Lines!

Never sail a passage without life lines, you will never regret the time taken to fix them up, gives you the ability to sleep well when off-watch knowing that your partner can move around the boat in safety.
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Old 06-10-2014, 07:19   #28
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Re: Death Lines!

I once owned an ODay 222. Some of the bolts attaching the stanchion base plates to the deck were a bit loose when I bought it, so check to see if the stanchions are wobbly. Re-bed with caulk as needed.

Also, in my opinion you really shouldn't rely on holding on to the lifelines for stability when moving along the deck. It's much safer to use the handholds on the cabin roof and the shrouds.
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Old 06-10-2014, 07:30   #29
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Re: Death Lines!

We have lifelines on our 28" Triton. I use them for hanging fenders and wet clothes. I tie the flag halyard to them. I do not use them to hold onto when moving fore and aft - I use the handholds on the cabin top. I do use the gunwale lip (projects about 2" up from the deck) to put my feet - the bare minimum and should probably be higher.

I will likely not have life lines on the 47' ketch I am restoring. There will be bulwarks of varying height along the deck - probably averaging about 5". I will rely on that along with center mounted jacklines. I will do what I can to avoid going forward in rough weather. I may consider lashing a line about waist height thru my standing rigging, during longer passages, up to the main mast with more forward angling down to the bow to allow head sails to move freely. I am thinking about that - wondering if it will be of any use.
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Old 06-10-2014, 07:37   #30
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Re: Death Lines!

BUBBLEGUM might save someone's life, given luck and the right situation, and lifelines are not a bad idea.

But, 24" lifelines, along with the average person's center of balance at 3 feet, is almost idiocy.

As far as bending over to hold onto lifelines while going forward ... well, that's ... no good.

If one is crawling or doing anything to lower the COB below the lifelines ... the lifelines work, although I'm sure we all usually go forward, on two feet, slightly hunched, with our hands holding onto something on the outside of a boat, below our COB, refusing to realize that ANYTHING that makes the body want to go outward and off the boat(wave, (bad turn, wind), will not be deterred by 24" lifelines.

I'm also sure that NO ONE(I suppose I could be wrong), hangs onto lifelines when the shrouds or anything better/more secure is available.

Since foresails never encroach inward from the shrouds, how's come no one ever seems to use the shrouds in a sort of lifeline system? At least then, for a few feet before reaching the shrouds, the lifeline would be at a reasonable height & maybe actually above the COB.?
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