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Cony 01-13-2004 06:13 PM

Horseshoe on rope?
Hi; I am terribly embarrassed to ask, but here it goes: is the horseshoe supposed to have a rope attached to it, when you throw it? If yes, is it supposed to be a floatable rope or can it be a regular one? And, how long?

Thanks for any advice -
and no, sailor I am not (just a novice boat owner with no knowledge).

joub 01-13-2004 07:36 PM

Horseshoe on rope?
The best answer I can come up with is "it all depends!"

If you want to use it as a floatation device to throw to a hapless crewmember until you can get back to them then a rope/line is not needed.

If you have a man overboard pole you plan to throw over with the horseshoe the two should be attached to each other with a line. A man overboard pole, if you aren''t familiar with the term, is a device similar to a fishing pole that floats upright in the water. It usually has a flag attached to the upper end to help the boat locate the crewperson in rough water when it might be hard to spot a head bobbing just above the surface. A floating line is easy to see and grab if you are in the water. It also keeps the line away from the prop when you are manuovering to pick up the MOB.

If you want to use the horseshoe with maybe a 100'' of floating line attached to the boat, you can throw it overboard and then circle around the MOB until he can grab the line/horseshoe. With the boat stopped, you can then pull the MOB back to the boat with the line.


Cony 01-14-2004 08:34 AM

Horseshoe on rope?
Jim, thanks so much for your explanation! I think, I will get the floating rope then (makes sense regarding the prop!) AND the MOB-flag. Saw that flag before, but had no idea, how to use it!
Thanks again,
and off I am to the marine-store!:-)

Silmaril 01-15-2004 06:29 AM

Horseshoe on rope?
While you are at it, add a MOB strobe to the package. The full set-up should consist of the following: MOB stobe connected to the Horseshoe by about 6'' Poly "Waterskiing" line, then the Horseshoe connected to the MOB pole by about 15'' of Poly line.

The idea is that if a person falls over at night, they swim to the light, pull on the rope to get to the horseshoe. The poly line needs to be replaced annually, as it degrades rapidly in the sun. You should also include a drogue chute on the Horseshoe to be deployed to prevent excessive drifting. A whistle is also a good idea.

You also need to make sure everything is free to be dropped over with no tangles or obstructions. All crewmembers also need to know how to properly deploy and use this set-up.

Also make sure you have an idea of how you are going to retrieve your MOB once you come along side of them. Do you have a halyard that can reach the water? Are you planing on using a lifesling? Does everyone know how it works?

If you are the sole person on board who has all the answers, you had better become comfortable using a harness and jack lines. I have port and starboard lines rigged from my stem fitting to my stern cleats, and wear my harness and a 6'' tether and carabiner. I do this whenever I am alone or with a crew who is less comfortable with handling my boat if I was in the water.

Good luck and safe sailing.

hamiam 01-15-2004 07:20 AM

Horseshoe on rope?
I would strongly suggest that you check out a product called lifesling. You should be able to find it using a google search or at any marine store. Personally, I believe that it is worth the money as it not only giving you a throwable pfd but also gives you a hoisting system for getting the person back on the boat.

elhanley 02-16-2004 03:32 PM

Horseshoe on rope?
All good advice on an important subject. I would add that to reduce the degradation of the poly line due to sun, I stow it in a Sunbrella bag with a length of dacron for the exposed section between the horseshoe and the bag (which has a quick-release opening at the bottom.)

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