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janders 04-28-2008 05:17 PM

roll your own tethers
Hey all, after passing out at the cost of tethers ($225 @ Fisheries!), I'm considering making my own. I understand that pinching pennies on safety gear could be false economy but I believe that you can make a tether that will keep you on the boat and without sacrificing safety and without coughing up >$200.

My idea is a length of line, with figure-eight loops on either end with the tails secured by overhand stoppers. Locking carabiners on both end loops. Then, somewhere in the middle on the line (actually positioned so one end of the line is 3' away and one end of the line is 6' away) put another loop with an alpine butterfly and attach a quick-release shackle to that loop. That should give me a nice double-ended tether.

I need to put some sort of padding on the caribiner for the 6' end so it doesn't scratch the deck. It would also be nice to find a positive locking 'biner with a quicker release than the screw release one. Still haven't found that.

I'm also interested in feedback on the safety of the knots and the breaking strength of the line. Both knots are pretty common in the climbing world which has similiar requirements to a tether. That's the reason I went with a figure eight loop over a bowline.

Anything to add? Am I missing something in the process?

Giulietta 04-28-2008 05:19 PM

Would you defend yourself in court???

capn_dave 04-28-2008 05:36 PM

Why not just buy a kit
From Sailrite Tether Kits by Sailrite Then make your own. The big cost is in the Caribbeans or is it caribeaners, Ah crap !!! safety hooks

Fair Winds

Cap'n Dave

Plumper 04-28-2008 05:44 PM

I with you for tying on. If slings with water knots will hold a factor 2 on rock they'll sure hold you on a boat. The loads are much less. The store bought tethers are just convenient. Watch out using climbing gear in a salty environment, they corrode really fast. Aluminum biners with steel hinge pins are an invitation to go over the side.

janders 04-28-2008 05:45 PM


Originally Posted by Giulietta (Post 306363)
Would you defend yourself in court???

Umm, I'm not sure I follow your metaphor.

Boasun 04-28-2008 10:10 PM

If you know how to splice double braid then you can make your own jack lines and the Tethers (monkey tails in some regions).
Put some shrink tubing on the caribeaners to reduce any scratching of your gel coating.

SEMIJim 04-29-2008 08:11 AM


Originally Posted by janders (Post 306384)
Umm, I'm not sure I follow your metaphor.

The saying goes something like "The lawyer that defends himself has a fool for a client."

While I normally would not dream of disagreeing with Alex on anything related to sailing, I will make an exception on this one. If you know your rope work, I mean really know your rope work, I see no reason not to fabricate your own jack lines and tethers, any more than I see no reason not to tackle anything else on ones own boat--providing one knows what they're about.

It could be argued that, in this, as in many other things in life, there's even an advantage to doing it yourself: If you're knowledgeable, capable and conscientious, nobody is likely to do as good a job on your own stuff as will you.


zz4gta 04-29-2008 10:11 AM

I'm obviously missing something...|135|88189&id=904926

$60 bucks for the tether. Are you talking about tether, jack lines, and harness?

Boasun 04-29-2008 10:17 AM

the $60 is for the tether alone... You have to remember if it is for the marine field the price is tripled.:(

ChicagoNewport27 04-29-2008 12:48 PM

Do a search for tethers and jacklines on eBay
I bought two sets of elastic tethers and a set of jacklines on eBay from this seller and they are just as nice as the expensive ones. He sells both the standard tethers and retractible elastic tethers, in both standard snap hook and the more expensive wichard hook tethers, in a range of colors, all for about half of retail. He sells both single and double line tethers, as well as jacklines, for a price thats hard to beat. I used the Buy It Now area, but they go even cheaper if you have the patience to sit through an auction.

eBay Store - Best-Bargainz: Boat Gear: Single Line Safety Elastic Tether Sailboat

And no, I'm not affiliated with this eBay seller in any way, nor do I get a kickback from endorsing his products.

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