A few months ago I led my lifelines at the bow down to the deck, so they wouldn't interfere with the foresails and so I could get my genny as low as possible for light air. You can kind of see it in the (bad) picture here:
This has been one of the biggest improvements to the boat's performance so far.
However I do hank-on jibs, so I really wanted some sort of lifeline up there for sail changes, but one that could be lowered for sailing. So I rigged up some 1/8" amsteel which I led from the original location of the lifelines at the top of the bow pulpit, through the foremost stanchion (it fit fine next to the wire) and down at an angle about 3' aft of the stantion to be attached at the toerail. When in use, I shackle it to the toe rail with a soft shackle, and when sailing I release the shackle and the foreward part pulls through the stanchion till the dymeema is completely slack, not blocking any sails.
Well tight lifelines are much safer than loose ones, and I really want to get these tight when going forward. A regular shackle doesn't allow this. The tightest I can get them with a shackle is fairly loose, and is a huge PITA when the boat is bobbing around. Pelican hooks would be perfect, but I don't want to spend the money for that right now. The amsteel costed me like $5, so that's the kind of budget I'm on for this project.
Does anyone have some suggestions for getting at least some minimal hand-tension on this lifeline in a way that is easy to release when the sail change is done and I want to go back to sailing? Maybe some sort of a hitch or prussick knot on doublebraid which I could then attach to the dyneema? maybe something else?