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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,

I have a mirage 27 and I've replaced the main hayl with 5/16 Samson XLS. I like that diameter as it stacks nicely. Anyway, the breaking strength is 3500 Lbs. I also picked up a 3/16 Ronstan locking halyard shackle to go along with it. The shackle looks a little smaller in my hand than I was expecting, I must admit. Its breaking strength is 2640 Lbs. The next step up (1/4) is 4620 Lbs, (FYI).

Anyway, I'm just doing a little check here with you all to see if I'm playing this a little to un-safe. Is 2640 Lbs too low for a halyard? Also, does anybody know of a good website for guidelines of this sort?

Thanks!
Trevor
 

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Return the shackle for a credit and tie the halyard on with a bowline or buntline hitch. You can end for end the halyard to even UV damage and change the wear points by how you tie the knot or cutting a foot or so off the halyard occasionally. Last but not least, no shackle to bonk you on the head.
 

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Don't get hung up on the breaking strengths. Actual loads are well below that. If it fits the sail grommet, you can continue to use it. If it's small, exchange it for the next size up.

Sorry roverhi, I prefer the convenience of a halyard shackle. I do agree about not using snap shackles on the genny sheets.
 

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A buntline hitch only has, at best, 80% of the strength of the line, so using one will be only as strong as the shackle the OP is worried about. A bowline is worse.

Like others have said, your actual loads on the halyard will be much, much less than your current gear strength.

Mark
 

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A buntline hitch only has, at best, 80% of the strength of the line, so using one will be only as strong as the shackle the OP is worried about. A bowline is worse.

Like others have said, your actual loads on the halyard will be much, much less than your current gear strength.
Mark
All knots have less strength than the line they are tied with. In this case, the PO's worry about the shackle was unfounded as the line was over strength by a factor of 10 or more. He could have used 1/4" line and it would have been strong enough. Halyards in most instances are sized not for strength but for hand comfort and limiting stretch.

His worries about the shackle are misplaced though the reason for not having the shackle in the first place is. With a spliced in shackle you will be committed to locking in wear points and UV damage to the line and shortening it's service life. Have sailed with rope halyards and tied on halyards for something over 40 years with sails to SoPac and Hawaii thrown in. Never had a problem with the knot and haven't been clunked in the head with a shackle since switching over. Actually found knots are way less a hassle than most of the shackles that I've found on others boats.

The real question is why waste your money oh boat jewelry that really serves no real purpose and can cause injury in the right/wrong circumstances. I guess if you want to keep West Marine overcharging for everything or support Schaeffer/Harken etc. because your cousin works for them, have at it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks all. The halyard shackle I bought fits over the main nice and tidily and I've been sufficiently pleased with the answers here regarding the loading. I appreciate the advice from all.

Trevor
 

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One reason to use a shackle is when using a Dyneema halyard with the cover stripped as on many race boats. The small 1/4" Dyneema core can be tied into a knot but will be very hard to untie,and it can slip loose. It will not be as strong as an eye splice on a shackle. even better then a shackle is a Equiplite soft shackle with the spool spliced to the 1/4" Dyneema. the Equiplite is much lighter then a shackle so no danger from being hit by it and if you sky a halyard it will stop at the mast sheave and can be retrieved even at sea.. If you sky a tied on halyard it will come off the mast sheave and then there will be no way to restring it at sea.
https://equiplite.eu/en/images_nsconnector
 

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We're off the point I think.

Main halyards are sized for stretch, not strength, and 5/16" polyester DB is going to be a rubberband, IMHO. But either way, it's a safe bet that if the stretch is low enough, any knot or reasonable fitting will work.

What was the original halyard?

Though I agree re. shackles bonking you on the head for sheets, on halyards, particularly the main halyard, I think this is impossible. That said, I like either knots (polyester) or soft shackles (Dynema etc.). Some people have good reasons for metal shackles; they worked better on one boat I owned.
 

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Forgive my ignorance, but wouldn't a D-ring work better than a shackle? :confused:

That is a carabiner, not a D-ring.

Often a carabiner needs to be sized very large just so that the opening will fit in the headboard or cringle. They can scratch and bang on the mast when raised. They also aren't generally as strong as a shackle, but by the time they get large enough to fit, they often will be strong enough. Otherwise, it will work.

Mark
 

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With a boat that is being daysailed not cruising to Hawaii...I'd call it a small but needless PITA to be tying the halyard to the main at the start of every trip, and untying and securing it again (tying & untying again) at the the end of the day.

As opposed to just snapping on a shackle, and then snapping the same to the lifelines or another point when the main was dropped at the end of the day.

BFD, you buy a shackle and make life easy. So the end of the halyard may wear and need to be shortened up once a year. or two. BFD. Beats screwing around with knots twice a day every time you go out.

Just one man's opinion.
 
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