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Old 24-05-2013, 13:03   #31
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Like I said, I "tested" this in all conditions. Up to 80 knots or so everything is just fine, no bending or jamming or breaking. I also "tested" with 120+ knots (kts, not mpg!) and then the snubber shafes through quickly, but the hook is fine and so is the splice and the dyneema lashing.
There is no problem to solve.
Sounds like the hook you've got is OK then.

I've never had a problem with a rolling hitch either.

Different ships...
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Old 24-05-2013, 13:18   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by conachair View Post

Sounds like the hook you've got is OK then.

I've never had a problem with a rolling hitch either.

Different ships...
Agreed, I have used a rolling hitch for some time too and there were no problems. The reason I changed back to the hook is that this design snubber lasts twice as long as compared to the rolling hitch version. It becomes so stiff that the hitch won't hitch no more after lets say 1 year full time use, while the version with the hook gets replaced after 2-3 years because it then looses much of it's stretch.

I consider the snubber a wear item and shafing gear, so don't mind replacing it, but I also don't mind doing that as little as possible.

The big pro for the rolling hitch is that it is cheaper: no stainless hook and no spectra lashing. Boats that have 3/8 G4 or BBB don't need the lashing because they can use a 1/2" snubber or even thinner, which can be spliced directly to the hook. I break 1/2" snubber so need 5/8" which does not fit.
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Old 24-05-2013, 14:58   #33
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

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Originally Posted by Andrew Troup View Post
I've taken to using a sacrificial webbing sling, made with a beer knot, Kleimheisted to the chain as shown

Then the sling's loop forms the standing part of a double sheet bend, with the snubber line forming the other part (I find the double version easier to untie after a serious session)

If I had to retrieve in a panic-stations departure, I'd slice through the sling parallel to the chain, between rope and chain, and the residue would happily make it round the chainwheel and into the navel pipe
In a less panic-assisted departure, depending on the webbing type, the (double) sheet bend is usually easier to untie than if the sling/loop were cordage. (I note Evans has come up against this difficulty)

If it's just not happening and there's a semi-urgent need clear the foredeck, the kleimheist can be undone from the chain, during which the snubber line is simply pulled backwards through the kleimheist loops.

A soak in warm water at leisure, and the sheetbend's back can be broken. I've never had to resort to a vice or a fid.

It's always relatively easy to 'break the back' of the kleimheist, because chain consists of a series of rigid toggles.

Persistent wiggling of these, in alternation, will break the stiffest, starchiest back.
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Old 24-05-2013, 16:46   #34
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
See the latest copy of BOAT US's magazine, an article called "Get a Grip!" It recommends something they call an "icicle hitch" speifically for a snubber on an anchor. June/July issue, p. 92.
Take a look at the author of that article -- it's Evans!
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Old 24-05-2013, 16:57   #35
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I have been using a dyneema loop with ene to end splice and kleimheist with 3 strand. Releases easily holds the chain well and no chafe yet only used for a short time this year though. So far its simple easy and cheap. I made 3 which should last a few years i would think.
Also use a piece of dyneema spliced to one bow cleat led through chain and tied off on stbd cleat as a chain stop very inexpensive added measure
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Old 24-05-2013, 17:19   #36
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

I forgot to point out that an advantage of the beer knot in this application is that it provides, ("for no extra cost or effort folks!") an inner pass of webbing inside the visible outer tube at the location "A" where the snubber is bent to the loop

This makes the webbing locally more circular and bulky, making for less chafe and also for a better marriage in the bend between the snubber rope and the nominally flat webbing

(You can see the inner webbing disappearing into the outer tube at "B")
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Old 24-05-2013, 17:22   #37
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

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Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Like I said, I "tested" this in all conditions. Up to 80 knots or so everything is just fine, no bending or jamming or breaking. I also "tested" with 120+ knots (kts, not mpg!) and then the snubber shafes through quickly, but the hook is fine and so is the splice and the dyneema lashing.
There is no problem to solve.
Jedi's 'solution' is exactly what we have used for most of the past decade (except we used rock climbing line for the snubber part), and had no real problem with it. But when I say "we", it was pretty much always Beth putting the hook on. However the last two summers I have been putting the hook on, and I started looking for a solution where I did not need to reach out past the pulpit to slip the hook on the chain. I am curious if Jedi's chain is somehow more 'reachable' - I seem to remember he is tall with long arms so perhaps this is just physically more 'within reach' for him, or does he have some 'trick' to getting it on the chain? The 'chain hook reach' is certainty doable (Beth has even shorter arms than I have), but it would be 'better' if there was a good solution that avoided it. I did like the rolling hook capability to tie and untie right there on deck and then run it out over the roller.

I have also tried a Mantus hook, and while it does stay on the chain a bit more securely (than a 'normal' hook), it is not a 'sure thing' and occasionally can/does slip. It also is more of a fiddle to get off the chain. With a 'normal' chain hook you just unload the hook and juggle the summer a little and the hook will drop right off and there is no further 'reaching around the pulpit needed', but with the Mantus you do need to reach it to slide it off the chain. At this point I am not sure if I like it more or less than a normal hook.

Regarding the rope used . . . 3 strand nylon tends to get 'stiff' and I had thought that would make the rolling hitch more likely to slip. . . . any of you using 3 strand comment on that? 3 strand nylon also has the (Steve Dashew identified) 'heat build-up/internal melting' problem in heavy cyclic applications, and most of the 'experts' have stopped using it for mooring buoy lines, which I thought would have been a similar application to a snubber. Any comments/experience about that?

It would be interesting to try to test, but I would intuitively have thought nylon would have been more vulnerable to this 'cutting itself' issue than nylon . . . exactly because it stretches more it would (seem to me) to be 'sawing itself' more. Just as an aside, Dacron does stretch - not as much as nylon, but way way more than say spectra or Kevlar. Whether it's 'enough' stretch for the snubber application is a difficult question - but dacron does/will stretch to absorb the initial 'shock load' in cyclic loading.

I might try some of my mountain climbing line with the rolling hitch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
See the latest copy of BOAT US's magazine, an article called "Get a Grip!" It recommends something they call an "icicle hitch" speifically for a snubber on an anchor. June/July issue, p. 92.
LOL . . . . if you look closely I suspect you will see either my name or my wife's on that article. I first wrote it for practical sailor. We use the icicle hitch on our drogue bridles, where we needed more grip on a line than the rolling hitch provided. But the drogue load is much more steady state with none of the high cyclic loading that is on a snubber, so generally does not have this 'cutting itself' issue. (by the way we have also used dacron double braid for that drogue application, with no problem).

Perhaps I should learn to tie an icicle hitch with instructions! When tying up the drogue bridle I can do it in the cockpit with a knot book open in front of me. But I need to do the snubber knot 'from memory' as a book is not going to last long on the foredeck. There is something that is very unintuitive for me about the icicle and I have never managed to (or had any real reason to) 'memorize' it.
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Old 24-05-2013, 17:35   #38
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

What size chain and line in the OP, or did I miss that? How much scope? How long a snubber? It seems plausible that it was simply on the thin side and the snatch loads got to it within normal strength expectations. I doubt there was any sawing, not once the knot was tight.

In its defence, I'm sure it took only minutes to rig a replacement and ease some chain.

-------

Just curious, what uses have you found for dynamic climbing rope on-board?
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Old 24-05-2013, 17:38   #39
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

Had the snubber line been in use for a long time and tied in pretty much the same spot each time? (I have ropes that get bowlines often tied in the end that can almost tie themselves they are so formed to that knot). It looks pretty new in the pic.

Perhaps it was just bad luck - one of those things - and not a routine or expected problem. Most people here seem to report using rolling hitches in this application for a long time without failures.

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Old 24-05-2013, 17:38   #40
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

We used 30' of 5/8" 3 strand nylon with a rolling hitch for our snubber on our W32. Anchored 24/7/365 for a year and a half. Never had a problem with the snubber and it was still in decent condition after all that time at anchor. Never had a problem untieing the rolling hitch even after two days of 50k winds from a tropical depression in Moorea.

Tried a chain hook for a very short time but ditched it after it fell off one too many times. Turned to the rolling hitch and never looked back.

I'd be leery of using the new synthetics. They don't like sharp bends and are very slippery. Not the best situation for going with a knot to attach to the chain. Pretty much means you'd be stuck with a hook which are unacceptable.
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Old 24-05-2013, 17:50   #41
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

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Originally Posted by thinwater View Post
It seems plausible that it was simply on the thin side and the snatch loads got to it within normal strength expectations.

Yes, it's possible it was just undersized. It's the same size (10mm) as the climbing line we have used for a decade as a snubber that never broke, but I don't know the relative strength of the two lines as they are very different construction. (10mm chain, a bit more than 3:1 scope I was constrained by a mooring field all around me, about 20' of snubber out).

Just curious, what uses have you found for dynamic climbing rope on-board?

I originally started using it on the traveler, to soak up the shock loads in gybes. I think I got the idea originally from Stan Honey. Works pretty well there.
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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
Had the snubber line been in use for a long time and tied in pretty much the same spot each time? (I have ropes that get bowlines often tied in the end that can almost tie themselves they are so formed to that knot). It looks pretty new in the pic.

No, it's newish line (this year). It has the mantus hook tied to its other end, so I just reversed it to try out the rolling hitch.
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Old 24-05-2013, 20:52   #42
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Just a thought Evans, what sort of slack do you have on the chain. This might effect the chafe on the knot due to the angle the rope crosses itself.
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Old 24-05-2013, 21:23   #43
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Originally Posted by estarzinger View Post

Jedi's 'solution' is exactly what we have used for most of the past decade (except we used rock climbing line for the snubber part), and had no real problem with it. But when I say "we", it was pretty much always Beth putting the hook on. However the last two summers I have been putting the hook on, and I started looking for a solution where I did not need to reach out past the pulpit to slip the hook on the chain. I am curious if Jedi's chain is somehow more 'reachable' - I seem to remember he is tall with long arms so perhaps this is just physically more 'within reach' for him, or does he have some 'trick' to getting it on the chain? The 'chain hook reach' is certainty doable (Beth has even shorter arms than I have), but it would be 'better' if there was a good solution that avoided it. I did like the rolling hook capability to tie and untie right there on deck and then run it out over the roller.
I can easily walk to the bow and touch the anchor roller. I just drop the hook onto the chain right there at the roller, then oull on the other end of the snubber to keep it tight so that the hook does not fall off and then run more chain out with the windlass control in my other hand. Then I tie it to a cleat and run an extra 10' of chain out so that it hangs in a big loop. Sailors that see their hook fall off the chain have either not kept tension on while deploying it,or they didn't put out enough extra chain. When the snubber stretches, the chain should not come tight. I see that happen again and again, so it's always operator error.

I can see that some boat designs might have bad access to the chain, making it difficult to get the hook on. I might resort to a rolling hitch if I would have that.
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Old 24-05-2013, 22:49   #44
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

In my opinion, just about everyone here has been concentrating on the less important aspects of snubber usage.

The really key things about snubbers are twofold, in my opinion: (a) preventing chafe (like in every case where you have a load on a rope for long periods of time; and (b) getting the length and thickness right -- "tuning" the snubber. 90% of cruisers I see have snubbers which are far too short to do their jobs. I carry two snubbers, and will probably add another to my collection this year -- a short, thin one for benign weather, and a long, thick one for more challenging conditions. The short one is about 16mm and 6 meters long, and the long one is, IIRC, is 22mm and 10 meters. The snubber must be long enough to stretch and be a shock absorber, and so the thicker it is, the longer it must be to give the needed stretch. Nylon is really the only material which works, and so we have to keep in mind that nylon loses a lot of its strength when wet. It guess they should probably be doubled up in really nasty weather, and probably should be changed every few hours if you're in hurricane conditions, but others can comment better than I on that (I've never anchored out in a hurricane). Three strand and octoplait both work well; I use octoplait simply because I love the way it feels in my hands, but three-strand melds with the chain even better.

Attachment of the snubber to the chain is simply not a problem, and not worth a lot of agonizing. A hook avoids chafe at the chain, but is that really a problem? After 100 nights on the hook on the same snubber, cut off a meter and whip the end -- good for another 100 nights. Hooks are fine if you like them, but I have always thought they were solutions looking for a problem, and probably designed for sailors who secretly don't like to tie knots or whip ropes.

As Evans mentioned, another disadvantage to hooks is that you have to lean out over the bow roller to put them on, something I personally hate to do. A well tied rolling hitch will go out over the bow roller (and come in, too), and so can be tied on deck -- simples, and safer. Yet another disadvantage to traditional chain hooks -- they can fall off (not the nice looking Mantus one, I suppose).

The humble rolling hitch works flawlessly in this application -- it is not a challenge for the knot because the rope works into the chain and melds with it in any case. The humble rolling hitch has other advantages -- for most sailors, it can be tied with your eyes closed and without giving a second's thought to it, and even better, it can be effortlessly untied in a second even after having been under great stress. Like Evans, I tie mine with three turns, instead of the usual two, although to be honest, that's probably overkill. Prussicks, Kleinheists, etc., will also work (just about any knot will work, actually, since the rope goes into the chain), but are unnecessary complications, IMHO, and are not as easy to untie as a rolling hitch, important if you need to bug out quickly. The icicle hitch is designed for holding on smooth posts, not a chain, and so is total overkill and needless complication for this application.

A sacrificial strap like Andrew's is a clever idea, but is it another solution looking for a problem which doesn't exist? It will save you from cutting and re-whipping your snubber every 100 nights or whatever. If you really hate working with and taking care of ropes, then this maybe makes sense. I'm not sure that preparing new straps every similar period is any less trouble, and it is certainly more expense.

Avoiding chafe is the real challenge with snubber, like anywhere you are leaving a rope under stress for long periods of time. I have taken to tying the bitter end of my snubber to my forestay chainplate and leading it right over the spare anchor roller. This is more or less chafe free as long as the boat doesn't veer hard or lie at an angle, but it has a disadvantage in that a straight lead from the very forwardmost part of the boat is less stable than a lead from a slight angle, as from a bow cleat over the rail. Classic design boats with bulwarks with roller fairleads in them have a huge advantage here. I keep different kinds of hose on hand for hard cases of chafe, but on my boat, without fairleads, I have not found a really perfect solution to chafe on the snubber.
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Old 25-05-2013, 00:05   #45
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re: Rolling Hitch on Snubber

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In my opinion, just about everyone here has been concentrating on the less important aspects of snubber usage....
Errrmmm ... perhaps that's because we're endeavouring to brainstorm solutions to the specific problem outlined in the OP

(A problem you suggest "doesn't exist" ????

Despite Evans' "twenty seven eight-by-ten colour glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what each one was to be used as evidence....)

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