SailNet Community banner
1 - 3 of 3 Posts

· no longer reading SailNet
Joined
·
2,309 Posts
Reaction score
599
I made 10 tiny ones on Friday and all but two are gone. I'll try to remember where they were used.

2 went to keychains.

On my 505 I used them in the following places: main sail outhaul, jib halyard block at tack (the halyard runs down the sail luff on my boat), two are holding vang lead blocks to padeyes, one at the jib clew, one at the spin pole topping lift.

On my big boat there are at least 4 in the mainsheet system (I have a cascading block system, so my mainsheet has 4 fiddle blocks not 2), outhaul, reefing line attachment to boom, genoa sheets, spin sheets. Spin pole topping lift and downhaul have soft shackles built into them, with diamond knots on the pole. A soft shackle holds my anchor in place. A friend uses them on his boat to hold the foresail to the furler, because we could custom make short ones on the spot that allowed him to fit a slightly longer sail.

I use them almost anywhere that I need a shackle. They are very cheap to make (the tiny ones that I make out of Lash-It for my dinghy use 25 cents of line and take about 10 minutes to make).

I don't use them where I need a fitting that can be released under load or where the fitting needs to transfer torque. Otherwise I prefer to use a soft shackle to a metal one, if only because it is cheaper.

I find the yuppie comment pretty funny.
 

· no longer reading SailNet
Joined
·
2,309 Posts
Reaction score
599
- Outhaul attachment to mainsail; mine is pinned into the outhaul car
Vang attachment to boom and mast base; Snap shackles seem to work fine for me and have for about half a century.
A quality snap shackle (Winchard, Ronstan, Harken) is $40-$50. A strong soft shackle that can do the same job can be made for about $1.50.

Soft shackles don't replace all snap shackles, but they replace many of them. I'd still recommend a snap shackle at the bottom of either the mainsheet or vang depending on your boat to provide an easy to use lifting point if there is an man overboard. Soft shackles are awesome, but too fussy to use if the object that you are shackling is bouncing around.
 

· no longer reading SailNet
Joined
·
2,309 Posts
Reaction score
599
To use a soft shackle on the vang you would buy standard fiddle blocks, not ones with integrated snap shackles, then use a soft shackle between the fiddle block and boom.

I don't know what blocks those are exactly, they look sort of like Schaefer fiddle block. A snap shackle Schaefer Series 5 fiddle block is about $100 more than a version with a standard head. Compare Schaefer Marine Hardware - Detail to Schaefer Marine Hardware - Detail

If you'll be using that block in a fixed place then the U-shackle that it comes with is fine. If you want to make it easier to remove you can replace it with a soft shackle.

Soft shackles also make it easy to add a becket to a block with a hole through the center, like this one:


That way the same block can be repurposed to have a becket, or not. Harken and Lewmar also make blocks that are suitable for doing this.
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top