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Old 12-05-2015, 00:25   #16
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

In a wild gybe, I went backwards across the coachroof and onto the staunchions. I can remember thinking mid-flight that this was going to hurt.
The boat was heeled well over and the boom was trailing in the water but the staunchion line kept me from going overboard and the water broke my fall. The boat came back up, the line pulled me out of the water and racing continued. I managed to break the top half of the staunchion post and score a terrific bruise across my back.

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Old 12-05-2015, 03:17   #17
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

No. The first thing I did when I bought the Catalina 22 was to take off the 'trip lines' as their placement was poorly designed and not high enough to do anything but cause me to go overboard. One of the first things I look at in a boat is the deck layout and the placement of the stanchions. Many boats are so designed that they are either in the way or not properly attached. Lifelines are only good if fairly new as the cables rust and if covered are a treacherous deception of safety. Fittings fail.
I've had more than one time that the lines tripped me trying to get on or off the (Columbia 8.7) boat. I find them a hazard rather than a help. Bow and stern pulpits are a good idea as it gives one a place to hang onto in weather (most lifelines drop to the deck at the bow pulpit so little in terms of keeping one on the boat) and a place to hang things like the anchor.

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Old 12-05-2015, 04:16   #18
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

never saved me because I removed them
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Old 12-05-2015, 20:48   #19
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
i avoid the need for them, a sthey are mere guides not life savers per se.... i learned without lifelines on an antique boat...
Which of the figures on deck were you? :-P

I think of life lines as more a conceptual boundary device. Sort of like the rope corrals you find in banks and the lobby of your local movie theater. It's a useful device, I see it and I think "stay on this side", and generally I do. If you can't trust yourself not to cross a line, why should you trust anything else to keep you from crossing it?

I've got some more active use from Jack lines, but even then they're really meant more as a last hope than as a the primary device to keep me in the boat. The overall weight of personal responsibility usually does the trick of keeping me aboard, and generally keeps me from having to use my Jack lines overly much (ie. I try not to take to many chances when it comes to crappy weather).

That said, Imagine the worst possible thing you can think of while on your boat. Now chose your own level of safety, redundancy, and preparedness that makes you comfortable enough that you aren't paranoid, but not so comfortable that you ever forget that your safety is in your own hands, and it'll be your own fault if you go overboard, not a snapped lifeline or safety harness. The minute you think something other than your own hands and your own conscious efforts will keep you safe on your boat is the minute you need to quit boating. More than likely you'll otherwise drowned by peeing of the stern while looking up at the stars or some other sort of idiocy.

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Old 13-05-2015, 20:02   #20
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Location: Morro Bay, CA
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Ryan H, well said.
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Old 14-05-2015, 18:24   #21
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

My old bluewater cutter had high and substantial lifelines, and back then I never could imagine being without them.

However, my current catboat has no lifelines or pulpits at all, as is usual with catboats and many other traditional designs. Now I find I don't miss them at all. The nice thing about a properly set up catboat is that you never need to leave the cockpit except to handle the anchor.
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Old 14-05-2015, 21:42   #22
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

I was doing some race week back in the late 90s and the bowman had some spin. issue that I can't remember and it ended up ejecting him overboard. As he was going by I grabbed him and pulled him up. The force required to pull him up combined with the boat heeling on a gust shot me right through the slot between the deck and the lifeline. My armpits luckily caught the lifelines and then the bowman pulled be out. I was dunked to maybe just below my chest. Not too bad.

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