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I have no real experience using jacklines, though I have certainly considered them. One thing that has always occurred to me about jack lines is that I see great value in them on the foredeck, but would always be concerned about them being a royal pain from the companionway aft. Either they will be flat along the rail, in which case you can still go overboard on the side you are hooked in to, or they are in the way in the cockpit. We all know that if you go over the edge, it is exceedingly hard to get aboard a moving boat. I would be much more inclined to have the jacklines start at the aft end of the coach roof and go forward, and clip into hard points in the cockpit except when going forward. This would have the extra benefit that the jackline being shorter, it would have less slack. Does this make sense to the rest of you?
 

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Aquaholic
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yes, to me it does
 

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Seattle Sailor
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Abbreviated Jack Lines - I concur

I start my Jack lines about mid-cockpit level, and run to just behind the bow. We have 3 padeyes to clip into in the cockpit, and can reach the jack lines from inside the cockpit (this is essential). I can also pee from the stern from the padeye - but just barely (my preference). I have no reason to be walking along the deck in rough weather aft of the front edge of the cockpit, since I can reach the rail easily from the cockpit. In a larger boat, however, the jacklines may need to extend farther back. There may be advantages to longer jack lines, but these work for my needs.
 

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Glad I found Sailnet
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Anyone got a picture of a good jackline setup? (Smack probably wants to see them too, as our lead BFS aficionado.)
 

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Before our cruising life began, I went to a construction sling outfit (anytime you get a marine item from a non marine outlet, you save money), and bought a 300 foot roll of 2" webbing, and had them sew a loop in each end. Then I took it to Faith and looped the loop through and over the starboard bow cleat. I ran to the starboard stern cleat, inside of the jib traveller, so I only had to contend with the jib sheet from the traveller to the winch to go from bow to stern. I then ran this line to the port stern cleat, to move on the aft deck. With all the cleats tied off, I cut it and welded the raw end here.

Then I began at the port bow cleat, and did the same, but cut it at the port stern cleat. Using two tethers, I could safely walk the perimeter of Faith, a 56' monohull, and always clip the second tether before releasing the first to go over the sheets, or cleats.

The 2" webbing had much less stretch than the 1" available at the chandlers, and was less money too.
Note the yellow jackline wrapped on the aft starboard cleat below.

Gregg
Sailing Faith: Home Page
 

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Swab
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Anyone got a picture of a good jackline setup? (Smack probably wants to see them too, as our lead BFS aficionado.)


Yellow nylon webbing jack line does not roll under foot. Note hand holds on the dodger frame. Since this picture was taken I have wrapped the SS bars with french hitching and turks heads of tarred seine twine for better grip.



In the cockpit we have two heavy bronze padeyes.

More photos on the web site. Link in the sig.
 

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Glad I found Sailnet
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Very nice pictures. very nice.

Anyone else have pictures of jacklines on your boat?
 

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Vega,

Looks like something I was toying with for my boat, but my spreaders are inward along with cabin.

Anyway, Building behind you? Poets Cove, Pender Island, BC? And Kenmore Air Float plane to boot?!?!?!?!

marty
 

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We were up there the 3rd weekend in June, 18 months ago for a jeanneau owners roundezvous. Nice place, Hope to be up there this yr, had to cancel last yr for various reasons.

I do like how your forward jacklines run, but with my shrouds being inward, and wanting to walk forward it is a PITA for them to be inside. So need to work on that part/thought about where to put them at some point in time.

Marty
 

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██▓▓▒▒░&
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Marty, do you clip in with one hook or two?

There should be no problem getting past shrouds or anything else. One hook (one snatch hook on your tether) is no loner considered good safety, the modern trend is to ahve two hooks, one short, one a bit longer, so that you use the short tether, and then snap the longer one past an obstruction in order to move past it without needing to unclip. (The obstruction typically being the mast.)

Any safety gear is a PITA, but so is going overboard at sea.
 

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HS,

I have to admit, right now I have "nothing"! Not a good thing in some of the conditions we have been in here in puget sound. I have a padeye I need to install at the bow for up that way. But now need to figure out the best way to run the lines them selves then get some safety lines that will work. I have some older 5/8"? brown 3 twist lines that came with the boat. Single clip. Not sure I would trust them. But then, considering what I have used hanging off of cliffs locally, they are not that bad other than age!

marty
 

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██▓▓▒▒░&
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Marty, anything probably beats nothing. But I'd pass on the twisted line, it is too easy for that to act as a roller and roll your foot off the deck and you with it. The preferred material is tubular nylon webbing--not flat, and not poly. It is readily available, discounted, from webbing suppliers on eBay and other sources. That's also a handy material for many other purposes, so don't be afraid to buy some excess.

The 3-twist...is best for strapping packs on mules, or dock lines.

If your old single-clip line (mines form the same vintage but I've added a carabiner on a second line) is just a plain spring-loaded clip--be careful. It is oddly and easily possible to take a single spring clip and UNHOOK it from the line, just by rotating it against the line.

I found that out when I used them for diving tethers, and couldn't figure out how the tethers were getting unhooked all by themselves. The real one on my harness has one of those safety bars across the middle of it, you need to squeeze it before the main hook can open.
 

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Telstar 28
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BTW, when you're putting the webbing jacklines in place, put about a half-dozen twists into it. This will prevent it from making noise...
 

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HS,

The 3 strand lines are for from the harness to the boat jack lines. I could see where the clips could come lose under certain circumstances. Probably better than nothing, but not perfect by todays stds by any means.

I would not use a round line/rope or equal for the actual jackline either, I know to use a webbing of some sort. Going forward from the cockpit is usually easier to walk along the side deck, so the obstruction would be the shrouds in my case. So I can see the use of a 2 biener/equal for the boat end of that part.

I would like to figure something out to a degree, sooner than later, as when it is just my wife and I, I am the one forward. Last Oct, in some 30-40 knot stuff and 3-5' waves, my 22 yr old son was forward, I did not find out until later that his footing was tenuous at best. So something needs to be done. At 40-45F water temps yr around here, you do not have a lot of time before you the MOB is too cold to function.

Vega, where are the jack lines attached on the rear of the cabin? It appears like it is to the teak hand hold/rails. Not the best place from my understanding.

Marty
 

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I am not seeing the usage of webbing as a jack line at all. Most of the caribeners (sp) / hooks that are attached to tethers are designed specifically to go around lines. Staying secure and Maintaining positive movement are both equal parts of the equation. Round line reduces chafing of the line (hooks can more easily get snagged into webbing) and provides a smooth movement of getting where you want to go.

The later is important - as being able to move quickly is of utmost importance. When you have genoa sheet flogging around and you have someone on the foredeck that can not control it - they need to be able to move FAST to get out of harms way ( Or think of any other numerous situations). I have been in positions where not having freedom of movement made a situation worse.

Secondly, most of that webbing once chafed, cut, fraying etc have a tendancy to part quickly under even minor shock loads. Then you have the UV issue - as I am not aware of many webbings that are UV protected throughout the webbing (the coating maybe but rarely lasts long) and UV damage to webbing is a truly hidden danger and often goes ignored. I can't tell you the number of times I have had webbing fail during my 4X4 expeditions due to UV damaged tow strap webbing or a slight fray suddenly getting loaded up and parting)....

The whole rolling under the foot - the jack line should be fairly taunt and minimal amount of play. There are many other things underfoot on deck that will more likely get in the way of footing.

BTW I echo Marty's comment on not attaching it to the teak hand rails. Those are secured merely by small diameter wood screws and very easily pulled out. Eyebolts with backing plates or attach to cleats, or if you have room to add one more clutch on the cabin top - secure it there (not cam cleats - clutchs like spinlock XTs etc)...

On HG - I use the same lines used for the halyards as it readily available and there is very minimumal stretch. We only run them from the pulpit to the forward head of the mast because routing full length would get in the way of all the other lines, shrouds etc (altyhough I think I will run them now to the cockpit as I didn't think about using a clutch before...)....

At any rate just my random thoughts on the subject...Anything is better than nothing especi8ally working the foredeck where you really need to be secured via centerline of the boat....
 

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For all your reservations about using webbing for jacklines due to UV exposure, can we see the tethers you use? UV exposure is UV exposure and does not matter whether is jacklines or tether. Most jackline use Polyester Webbing. Polyester webbing has 2 to 3 times the UV Resistance that nylon webbing has. This is why most jacklines I have seen are Polyester.

There is a lot to be said about NOT having a round line rolling underfoot on wet pitching side deck!

UV resistance is Important but lets think about this a little compared to standing rigging. Standing rigging is exposed 24/7/365 how long does it last?
Jacklines for the average sailor maybe used one a week while racing. Just how much exposure do they really get, unless you leave them rigged all the time.

I have a pair of 10 year old web jacklines that I take with me on every delivery I make. Many times new boat owner don't know what jacklines are or I come to boats where jacklines were to short. Anyway, they are just as strong and in good shape today as they were with I bought them 10 years ago.
 

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Wish I never found SN!
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I bought my jack lines at a climbing store 1 inch tube webbing, total cost $22 and I plan to replace it yearly. If its good enough for the militery its good enough for me.
 

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Swab
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HS,


Vega, where are the jack lines attached on the rear of the cabin? It appears like it is to the teak hand hold/rails. Not the best place from my understanding.

Marty
They are attached to the handrails aft. Note that the handrails on my boat are of solid inch and a quarter teak, through-bolted and backed. Maybe steel or bronze padeyes would be better but this set up works for us. There are plenty of solid points for attachment of a tether and plenty of handholds to grab going forward so we never have to let go or be unclipped to move from the cockpit to the foredeck.
 

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Telstar 28
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The best jacklines I've seen, and I'd love to equip my boat with them when I get a chance, were made of spectra line running through tubular webbing. The webbing protects the line from UV damage, chafe, and keeps it from rolling under foot. The spectra line, which was 5/16", provides the strength.

I am not seeing the usage of webbing as a jack line at all. Most of the caribeners (sp) / hooks that are attached to tethers are designed specifically to go around lines. Staying secure and Maintaining positive movement are both equal parts of the equation. Round line reduces chafing of the line (hooks can more easily get snagged into webbing) and provides a smooth movement of getting where you want to go.

The later is important - as being able to move quickly is of utmost importance. When you have genoa sheet flogging around and you have someone on the foredeck that can not control it - they need to be able to move FAST to get out of harms way ( Or think of any other numerous situations). I have been in positions where not having freedom of movement made a situation worse.

Secondly, most of that webbing once chafed, cut, fraying etc have a tendancy to part quickly under even minor shock loads. Then you have the UV issue - as I am not aware of many webbings that are UV protected throughout the webbing (the coating maybe but rarely lasts long) and UV damage to webbing is a truly hidden danger and often goes ignored. I can't tell you the number of times I have had webbing fail during my 4X4 expeditions due to UV damaged tow strap webbing or a slight fray suddenly getting loaded up and parting)....

The whole rolling under the foot - the jack line should be fairly taunt and minimal amount of play. There are many other things underfoot on deck that will more likely get in the way of footing.

BTW I echo Marty's comment on not attaching it to the teak hand rails. Those are secured merely by small diameter wood screws and very easily pulled out. Eyebolts with backing plates or attach to cleats, or if you have room to add one more clutch on the cabin top - secure it there (not cam cleats - clutchs like spinlock XTs etc)...

On HG - I use the same lines used for the halyards as it readily available and there is very minimumal stretch. We only run them from the pulpit to the forward head of the mast because routing full length would get in the way of all the other lines, shrouds etc (altyhough I think I will run them now to the cockpit as I didn't think about using a clutch before...)....

At any rate just my random thoughts on the subject...Anything is better than nothing especi8ally working the foredeck where you really need to be secured via centerline of the boat....
 
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