Harness/Tether Q&A... - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 53 Old 06-03-2008 Thread Starter
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Harness/Tether Q&A...

A lot of safety discussions usually include talk of clipping in. I bough my inflateable PFD with an integrated harness so when necessary I could clip in.

My questions though:
1) I don't yet have a harness, can someone recommend one that is a good value. I see the wichard one's, are those the way to go? Who do some have three hooks? One to me, one to the boat, and one to ____, or is it just when you're switching

2) Do you clip into the lifelines that go around the boat? Are they really strong enough to hold a person's body weight?

3) Do you switch which side of the boat you get clipped into through different maneuvers?

4) if you go overboard wearing the harness, does the boat just drag you, do you pull yourself back up? What to do? Can you unclip yourself with tension on it?

5) Anything I should know?

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post #2 of 53 Old 06-03-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by merlin2375 View Post
A lot of safety discussions usually include talk of clipping in. I bough my inflateable PFD with an integrated harness so when necessary I could clip in.

My questions though:
1) I don't yet have a harness, can someone recommend one that is a good value. I see the wichard one's, are those the way to go? Who do some have three hooks? One to me, one to the boat, and one to ____, or is it just when you're switching
Get ISAF approved tethers, since they have some features that won't be on non-approved tethers, like colored strain indicators. The two leg tethers are s you can stay clipped in when moving about the boat. The shorter leg is often useful when working at the mast or cockpit, and range of motion isn't an issue.

Quote:
2) Do you clip into the lifelines that go around the boat? Are they really strong enough to hold a person's body weight?
NO, NEVER CLIP TO LIFELINES. Tethers should be clipped to hardpoints, like padeyes, or to jacklines, which are usually webbing, that run fore-and-aft along each side of the boat.

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3) Do you switch which side of the boat you get clipped into through different maneuvers?
Generally, you stay clipped to the high side of the boat, so that you don't fall across the boat or off the high side.

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4) if you go overboard wearing the harness, does the boat just drag you, do you pull yourself back up? What to do? Can you unclip yourself with tension on it?
ISAF approved tethers have one or two clips that are dual-action, like the Gibb or Wichard clips, that will not release accidentally. These clips are for the boat side of the tether. The body side of the tether is a snap shackle. This is so that you can release the tether under load... like if the boat capsizes. DO NOT BUY a tether that does not have dual-action clips for the boat side and a snap shackle at the harness side.

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5) Anything I should know?
The ones that have the shock cord running through the webbing are a bit nicer, since it helps keep you from tripping over the tether legs.

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post #3 of 53 Old 06-03-2008 Thread Starter
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Thank you, thank you! Very helpful information!

Dog - Is there any particular model you think is good that's worth looking at?

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post #4 of 53 Old 06-03-2008
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Heres a picture of a jack line

running down the deck...yellow webbing...This is John Pollards boat...Isist this one of the coolest photos ever...I have it as my screen saver...gives me goose bumps every day..
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post #5 of 53 Old 06-03-2008
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4) if you go overboard wearing the harness, does the boat just drag you, do you pull yourself back up? What to do? Can you unclip yourself with tension on it?
ISAF approved tethers have one or two clips that are dual-action, like the Gibb or Wichard clips, that will not release accidentally. These clips are for the boat side of the tether. The body side of the tether is a snap shackle. This is so that you can release the tether under load... like if the boat capsizes. DO NOT BUY a tether that does not have dual-action clips for the boat side and a snap shackle at the harness side.
Anything over say around 4 knots or so and your not going to pull yourself back on board. That is why the dog is saying to get a tether that you can release under load. Correct me if I'm wrong, but your thether should be short enough to keep you from falling overboard in the first place. If you fall, you want to remain on board. Its a debate that has been going on for years.

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I like the ones that look like this:



Notice, it has a snap shackle for the body end, dual-action clips at the boat end, shock cord and two legs...as well as the strain indicators to show when the tether should be replaced. However, I prefer the stainless steel hooks to the aluminum ones this one has.

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I was just taking a look at that one on the west marine site! ISAF approved.

I wonder who makes the tethers for west marine?

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Believe they're made by SOSspenders, but could be wrong. They're using a new type of clip, called a Kong, but I prefer the Wichard or Gibb clips, since they're stainless, and the Kong is aluminum IIRC.

See this page for more info on the Kong safety carabiner.

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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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I wonder who makes the tethers for west marine?
I am sure I read in Practical Sailor that they were having an issue with rusting on the Kong clip.

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post #10 of 53 Old 06-03-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stillraining View Post
running down the deck...yellow webbing...This is John Pollards boat...Isist this one of the coolest photos ever...I have it as my screen saver...gives me goose bumps every day..
Don't forget to run the jacklines on top of the sheets so you can move around without unclipping.

There is a tide in the affairs of men,
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
Shakespeare, Julius Caesar IV, iii, 217
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