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Old 10-05-2015, 17:32   #1
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Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Im in the process of rebedding everything on my 78 catalina 30 and find myself unimpressed with the previous owners stern pulpit base installation. No backing plate, not even large washers, The stanchion fastening was also weak and this got me pondering the shock loading capabilities of both systems....
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Old 10-05-2015, 23:14   #2
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Too many times to count. The lifelines, etc. don't often take a big load to keep you from going over but it's nice if they can take that hit. Have always had stantions and pulpits with either backing plates and/or fender washers. Would create a decent sized hole if the force was enough to rip them out.

For the most part, stantions take their greatest load when tieing or untieing from a dock. People just have a tendency to push on the the hardware rather than the hull.




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Old 11-05-2015, 01:33   #3
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

The simple, bottom line answer is YES, they do need some backing. Although as to; the how, & with what questions. That's going to vary with the construction of the boat in the area around the stanchion's & pulpit's respective vicinity.
That, & certain parts of the lifeline system take more human induced, cyclical loading than others. And so, obviously, need a bit more in the backing plate/system department.
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Old 11-05-2015, 05:51   #4
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

No, they have never had to save me. But if the time comes I hope they can and do.
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Old 11-05-2015, 06:35   #5
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Every time I race I rely on them.. I'm a bow man, it happens.

- Ronnie...on the geaux
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Old 11-05-2015, 07:55   #6
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

i avoid the need for them, a sthey are mere guides not life savers per se.... i learned without lifelines on an antique boat...
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Old 11-05-2015, 08:58   #7
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Thankfully not in an emergency. I did once see a poorly maintained lifeline on a friends boat give way and the owner went for a swim. Fortunately it was daytime and only about 8 kts of wind which I suppose is why he wasn't clipped in. The scary things was that the night before I had been up changing sails when the wind picked up and could have easily been counting on that lifeline holding. Of course I was clipped in, but staying on board is always better.
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Old 11-05-2015, 09:14   #8
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

"Lifelines" are appropriately named. The more you sail, the more you will realize that. I solo sail quite a bit. On my last solo last fall, I slipped on the deck and went under the lifelines. Instinctively, I raised my arms and hooked (not grabbed) the lower lifeline. Given the water temperatures, that saved my life.
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Old 11-05-2015, 09:21   #9
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Yes.

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Old 11-05-2015, 09:59   #10
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Yep. Fell from the high side all the way to lifelines, backwards. They kept me on the boat.
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Old 11-05-2015, 10:22   #11
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

I'm a big fan of no lifelines a la John Vigor. And my first boat: a wood 28' Kingscruiser didn't have pulpits either. On my current Clolumbia 29 I rebedded base stanchions but removed posts, kept the pulpits. Very good non-skid on deck and jack lines thread the bases. I'm always pretty scared when I'm out of the cockpit and maybe that's how it should be. Even while tethered.
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Old 11-05-2015, 11:00   #12
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bailsout View Post
I'm a big fan of no lifelines a la John Vigor. And my first boat: a wood 28' Kingscruiser didn't have pulpits either. On my current Clolumbia 29 I rebedded base stanchions but removed posts, kept the pulpits. Very good non-skid on deck and jack lines thread the bases. I'm always pretty scared when I'm out of the cockpit and maybe that's how it should be. Even while tethered.
Jacklines thread the bases? Do you mean your jacklines run through the stantion bases?

Jacklines should keep you on the boat, not just attached to it. They should be as close to the boat's centerline as is possible, especially if you've taken the very controversial step of removing your lifelines.

I would never remove my lifelines. They've saved me once. There's no downside to having them there, and there's considerable upside.
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Old 11-05-2015, 14:39   #13
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

On a rather boistrous May day on the Chesapeake a few years ago, I was on the foredeck getting ready to take down the working jib and put up the storm. The bow rose with a swell then suddenly dropped out from under me as the (inexperienced) helmsman rounded up in a swell. When I came down, I was in the water, but had grabbed a lifeline on the way over. I remember thinking, "Never trust a lifeline" on the way over, and it gave way when my weight hit it. Then it went taught again, and I was able to climb aboard. It turned out that the lifeline had held, but the pelican hook securing the gangway had parted. I was quite glad the cable had held as it passed through the eye of the stanchion.
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Old 11-05-2015, 19:39   #14
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Quite a few times saved by lifelines but the ss wire lifeline on our latest boat snapped when i was leaning against it whilst hauling the inflatable on to the bow. Guess what happened then? Agree stanchions need proper attachment & now think the lifeline wire may need occasional replacement. Ours dated from 1980 I suspect.
Would never go without them
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Old 12-05-2015, 00:28   #15
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Re: Have your pulpits or lifelines ever saved your bacon?

Yep, the jack lines(webbing) go thru the bases and they are not down the center as recommended but along each toe rail. Mostly they are there to keep me attached to the boat not necessarily on her. If I ever go over board solo you might not hear about it from me.
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