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Old 28-07-2018, 03:31   #61
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re: Instructions for Tying the High Strength Soft Shackle & Brion Toss Button Knot

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Originally Posted by jtsailjt View Post
What a great thread packed with useful information! Many thanks to all those who took the time to develop the soft shackle and share what they know, especially to SWL for posting the best step by step illustrated instructions I’ve been able to find that actually enabled me to make some useful soft shackles. I appreciate the help!
Thanks for the feedback . It is very satisfying to know this thread has been useful.

Attached is a photo of one of these “high strength” soft shackles in action today connecting our snubber to the chain:
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Old 28-07-2018, 05:44   #62
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re: Instructions for Tying the High Strength Soft Shackle & Brion Toss Button Knot

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Originally Posted by Seaworthy Lass View Post
Thanks for the feedback . It is very satisfying to know this thread has been useful.



Attached is a photo of one of these “high strength” soft shackles in action today connecting our snubber to the chain:


I’m trying to figure out what I’m looking at. The chain looks like it has a knot in it, but sure it does not.

Also, is your snubber dyneema end to end? What about shock absorption?
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Old 28-07-2018, 12:25   #63
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re: Instructions for Tying the High Strength Soft Shackle & Brion Toss Button Knot

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I’m trying to figure out what I’m looking at. The chain looks like it has a knot in it, but sure it does not.

Also, is your snubber dyneema end to end? What about shock absorption?
There is no knot in the chain, but the loose portion of the chain sometimes kinks around at the junction as it swivels around. The kink is not under any load. This seems to often occur in some manner regardless of how the snubber is connected. It is not usually observed as this portion is generally underwater.

The soft shackle is connected to acera, a HMPE fibre similar to dyneema/spectra. The acera runs over our bow roller for better chafe resistance. The actual nylon snubber then starts on deck and runs to a rear double bollard. It is held off the deck by a couple of low friction rings that also enable the nylon to kink around the curve of the deck. The nylon seemingly floats off the deck about 5cm in a very cool manner .

SWL
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Old 10-06-2020, 01:57   #64
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re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Very sadly, Brion Toss died a few days ago:

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...ed-235289.html

I admired him tremendously. Not just for his depth of skill and knowledge, but for his enthusiasm and passion for passing on his skills.

He modestly called the button stopper he developed a “Button knot”. No name at all really, as there are over a hundred types of button knots listed in The Ashley Book of Knots. In the second edition of his book The Complete Rigger’s Apprentice, he does not even take credit for developing this knot, but from the long thread on Sailing Anarchy that he contributed to at the time, it is clear that this was his invention.

I am going to start referring to this knot as the Brion Toss Button. If it catches on, which I hope it does, it will be only the second knot in history to be named after a person. The Matthew Walker knot is the other. This is also a stopper knot and also possibly named after a rigger.

I think this is a small tribute we can pay to a great man.

SWL
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Old 11-06-2020, 01:14   #65
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re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Over the last 5 years I have slowly tweaked the method.

I have put the latest instructions in two pdfs. One large one would not load here.

This is Part 1:
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Old 11-06-2020, 01:15   #66
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re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

And this is Part 2:
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Old 11-06-2020, 10:06   #67
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seaworthy Lass View Post
Very sadly, Brion Toss died a few days ago:

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...ed-235289.html

I admired him tremendously. Not just for his depth of skill and knowledge, but for his enthusiasm and passion for passing on his skills.

He modestly called the button stopper he developed a “Button knot”. No name at all really, as there are over a hundred types of button knots listed in The Ashley Book of Knots. In the second edition of his book The Complete Rigger’s Apprentice, he does not even take credit for developing this knot, but from the long thread on Sailing Anarchy that he contributed to at the time, it is clear that this was his invention.

I am going to start referring to this knot as the Brion Toss Button. If it catches on, which I hope it does, it will be only the second knot in history to be named after a person. The Matthew Walker knot is the other. This is also a stopper knot and also possibly named after a rigger.

I think this is a small tribute we can pay to a great man.

SWL
I've done several soft shackles with the Brion Toss Button and it is the most elegant and practical version I've seen. Hopefully your idea of naming this button after him will catch on because it seems like just the right sort of tribute for a man like him to help keep his memory alive, especially among those of us who are amateur practitioners of his art.

BTW, thanks for the updated instructions with the 'heads up' about potential problem areas included on the step where you need to be aware of it. My next act after hitting submit reply will be to print your new set of instructions to reference. I really appreciate you putting those slides together!

For me, the most confusing part of this knot is in keeping track of which working end I am looking at. Your different colored lines helps make that clear but when both ends are the same color I kept screwing it up because I'd get confused about which line was which. So, on one of the ends, I tightly wrapped a narrow strip of tape around it every 4 or 5 inches to act as reminders. Once it's time to start tightening things up they are easily removed. For someone like Brion, or someone like you, who is very familiar with this knot, crutches like this probably aren't necessary, but for me, who doesn't make these very frequently, I need all the help I can get, even with your excellent instructions spread out in front of me.
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Old 11-06-2020, 10:46   #68
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Quote:
Originally Posted by jtsailjt View Post
I've done several soft shackles with the Brion Toss Button and it is the most elegant and practical version I've seen. Hopefully your idea of naming this button after him will catch on because it seems like just the right sort of tribute for a man like him to help keep his memory alive, especially among those of us who are amateur practitioners of his art.
I contacted Grog with this suggestion and I will email Allen Edwards. Instructions for Brion’s button are included on his L-36.com website:
https://l-36.com/button_knot_top.php


Quote:
Originally Posted by jtsailjt View Post
BTW, thanks for the updated instructions with the 'heads up' about potential problem areas included on the step where you need to be aware of it. My next act after hitting submit reply will be to print your new set of instructions to reference. I really appreciate you putting those slides together!
You are welcome .
It is great to get feedback that someone found the instructions useful. It makes the effort worthwhile.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jtsailjt View Post
For me, the most confusing part of this knot is in keeping track of which working end I am looking at. Your different colored lines helps make that clear but when both ends are the same color I kept screwing it up because I'd get confused about which line was which. So, on one of the ends, I tightly wrapped a narrow strip of tape around it every 4 or 5 inches to act as reminders. Once it's time to start tightening things up they are easily removed. For someone like Brion, or someone like you, who is very familiar with this knot, crutches like this probably aren't necessary, but for me, who doesn't make these very frequently, I need all the help I can get, even with your excellent instructions spread out in front of me.
That is an excellent idea.
I opened the pdf to add this tip for the next version and I found that under step 3 in the instructions for the shackle itself I wrote:

When you are making your first few, it helps to mark one working end with black texta, so that you can easily identify the "blue" line in the earlier instructions for the button.

Your idea expands on this nicely.
I tied this button literally dozens of times in double braid of different colours to get the hang of it before attempting it in dyneema. Even so I found the transition a bit tricky. It wasn’t just that the two ends were not colour coded any longer, the dyneema is so slippery that the ends would not sit where I placed them. I got the hang of it eventually. There are no shortcuts .

SWL
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Old 11-06-2020, 11:06   #69
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Thanks for preparing such easy to follow and detailed instructions SWL.
I cant stand a mess of lines on my dock cleats - the shackle you describe - in 9/16 dyneema - features on all my cleats to allow more than one line to be connected without it being a mess of lines...so, your instructions literally have kept my boat safe through three hurricanes/TS's now....[emoji16]

As far as naming the button after Brion - this is a +10 idea and I hope it takes off.

I didn't know him, but I've learned a lot from him through his book. His passing is surely a loss to sailing in general.

Already talked to my dock mates about the shackles based on "The Brion button"

Pieter
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Old 11-06-2020, 12:55   #70
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Great thread, SWL. Many thanks for making these available. I've just download the Brion Toss Button Knot instructions. Now I'll look around for some line



Cheers,
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Old 12-06-2020, 00:50   #71
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot

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Originally Posted by Afrinus View Post
Thanks for preparing such easy to follow and detailed instructions SWL.
I cant stand a mess of lines on my dock cleats - the shackle you describe - in 9/16 dyneema - features on all my cleats to allow more than one line to be connected without it being a mess of lines...so, your instructions literally have kept my boat safe through three hurricanes/TS's now....[emoji16]

As far as naming the button after Brion - this is a +10 idea and I hope it takes off.

I didn't know him, but I've learned a lot from him through his book. His passing is surely a loss to sailing in general.

Already talked to my dock mates about the shackles based on "The Brion button"

Pieter
Our soft shackle with Brion’s button that is used between our chain and snubber has held us through nine named North Atlantic storms in north western Scotland these past two winters (and countless times before in the Med).

The 30% increase in strength compared to one made with a Diamond stopper has meant I sleep with just one eye open then rather than two .

SWL
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Old 13-12-2020, 19:30   #72
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Any chance these instructions are in a Youtube video. I find it much easier to watch a video of this being done. I can stop the video and rewind it.
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Old 14-12-2020, 01:33   #73
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

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Any chance these instructions are in a Youtube video. I find it much easier to watch a video of this being done. I can stop the video and rewind it.
Hi Jbinbi

There were no YouTube instructions when I started this thread, but these are now available.

A search picked this one up first:

https://youtu.be/91_jEjQdlBU

It is 40 minutes long, but worth watching if not for the tying technique, then for the pretensioning method. Instructions for climbing purposes will be stringent, as lives depend on the finished product.

I picked up a few tips.
At the 29 minute mark there is further discussion about pretensioning. I have been tensioning soft shackles closed, which is apparently good. I have been flipping them during tensioning (I had previously not heard of anyone else doing this), which is also apparently good.

However, I have been burying the tails after tensioning, which is apparently less good. I have not suffered distorted knots though, as I tension very carefully by hand before pretensioning on a winch.

Other comments:

- The eye is made to fairly loosely hold 4x line diameter. This looks roughly equivalent to 6x held tightly. Although they do not use tape to ensure the eye size does not shift, the size of this is checked before the last steps of tensioning by hand. In the load testing it is clear the eye is sized generously.
It is super important to ensure the eye is not too tight as it risks it ending up actually smaller than the legs that need to pass through and strength will plummet.

- The length of final bury is MUCH shorter than I use (6 mm Amsteel is used in the video and a 3-4” bury is suggested, which is only 13-17 times line diameter in this case).
They do not mention bury length in relation to line diameter at all, just state that 3-4” is needed.
I had read that load testing showed it needed to be around 30 x line diameter for maximum strength.
This leaves me unclear about the importance of this, particularly as during construction in the YouTube (and therefore the load testing shown) the legs look much longer than 3-4”

- The instructions for tying the Brion Toss button are quite different to mine (plus they show a clockwise tie, mine go anticlockwise). Don’t try and relate my photos to what is done in the video. You will be left thoroughly confused.
Pick what tying technique suits you best. The one Brion used that he illustrated in his book was a confusing one for me, so different techniques will clearly be easier to understand for different people.

Have fun learning to tie this knot. For me it was a challenge initially, but hugely rewarding. Once you learn what to do, it is not much more difficult than tying a Diamond stopper.

SWL
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Old 14-12-2020, 06:36   #74
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Fantastic. Thank so much for all of this SWL!
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Old 14-12-2020, 07:32   #75
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Re: Instructions for Tying the Brion Toss Button Knot & High Strength Soft Shackle

Could you comment on this version, done by 'the rigging doctor'. It seems much simpler. There is no burying the tail, so I don't know how much that decreases the strength. Maybe I wouldn't use this for attaching my bridle to my anchor, but to attach a turning block to a padeye for a screecher? Or do you believe this will have very little strength?

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