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Connecting Tow Straps Safely

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Old 12-22-2008, 06:16 AM
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Default Connecting Tow Straps Safely

I was wheeling with a few guys this weekend in deep snow and we had to connect two tow straps together.

One guy went into the back of his jeep and got a small wood dowl rod and made a special knot with the rod. He explained that you never want steel in the system if something breaks and also if you need to remove tension you can pull the wood out like a pin. it all made sense to me.

Here is the question does anyone have a picture of how you make this safe knot. I would like to get the extra bits and pieces and put it in my off roading kid but if I cant make the knot it wont do any good.

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Old 12-22-2008, 08:20 AM
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in the past, ive looped them together... but it was a major PITA to get them apart. Id also like to know how this worked
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Old 12-22-2008, 08:35 AM
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Not sure what knot would include a wood dowl that can be pulled, maybe a sailor on here could help out as I'm sure it would be something used in sailing. As for tying two straps together, your best knot would probably be the good old square knot or if the straps are different sizes the sheet bend or double sheet bend. not matter how much tension is on the straps, getting the knot out will be easy and they will hold tight, just remember though that connecting two straps creates a weak point at the connection and you'll actually loose some of the strength it had. I don't reccomend jerking the straps when used this way, but good steady pulls should be fine.
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Old 12-22-2008, 08:38 AM
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Not my picture, i found it on the web, but this is the basic idea.

Like so:




there is little force on the "towel" an old wooden handle or dowel works fine, I have one of those little aluminum cinchbone thing, but i have never used it. I have pulled a lot of heavy machinery on the farm using a simple 3/4" dowel.

when your done pulling, releasing the tension on the straps will make thm just about fall apart, no knots to fight with (and lose)
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Old 12-22-2008, 09:45 AM
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I have used one of my many shackles.
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Old 12-22-2008, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by jkkat View Post
I have used one of my many shackles.
x2...This is the best way in my opinion. Just have a few extras on hand and you never have to tie anything together.
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Old 12-22-2008, 11:17 AM
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i wouldnt tie anything together with a shackle, they turn into projectiles if they let go, just like i would never use a tow strap with a hook.
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Old 12-22-2008, 11:36 AM
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it's hard to explain but i think i'll try. i don't exactly know what he's talking about but i have an idea of how the wood would be like a pin.
on second thought i'll try to draw a picture for you guys, i think this would work.
put each loop in the center of the rod, then grab some excess strap and wrap it around the other part of the rod. do this for both sides, and slide everything towards the center. this would seem to make the pressure distributed equally, not breaking the rod at such a short point, making it easily un-done by releasing the pressure and bringing out the rod.

does that make sense??
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Old 12-22-2008, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by HappyCurmudgeon View Post
i wouldnt tie anything together with a shackle, they turn into projectiles if they let go, just like i would never use a tow strap with a hook.
Oh they do....don't ask how I know
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Old 12-22-2008, 04:52 PM
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In reality, how often do shakles break? I am aware of the fact they do fail at times and they will become a hazard as they fly toward you....

BUT....how frequent of an occurance is this if you have 10,000lb rated shackles. Do you think a high percent of the failures are due to using incorrect equipment and shackles designed for use with an ATV?

I have been lucky enough to never have one fail - but I have seen chain and other items fail and the mess they can cause....
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