Ball thingy on quick release buckle of tow belt

Discussion in 'Gear Talk' started by pawsplus, Nov 28, 2018.

  1. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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  2. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    Hit WalMart or any sporting goods store for "bungee cord ball ends." You may have to buy half a dozen or more. I think a six-pack runs about five bucks. I Googled for these and got many hits.
     
  3. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    If you can wait, ordering those ball ends from overseas via eBay will be cheap.

    Yanking on the end of the belt - the part that's passed through the buckle - will pop open the buckle.

    Most of the bungee end balls I've found are smooth; the ones on my tow belts are rough.
    I have used 'practice golf balls' on sprayskirt loops to provide a ready grab point. They are a bit on the big side for a tow belt buckle, but would certainly be 'grabbable' even with gloves/mitts/cold hands.
     
  4. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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  5. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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  6. designer

    designer Paddler

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    Perhaps locally you have a golf shop or sporting goods store that sells "wiffle" golf balls. Ace Hardware has them at 12 for $3.00. The "golf ball" has a variety of holes for easy attachment and the texture gives and easy grip. Some friends have put them on the grab loop of their spray skirt - making it easier to see that the loop is outside the skirt and gives and easier grab.

    I don't know why you would want bungee cord involved because it seems the pull effort should transfer directly to the buckle and not be absorbed by bungee stretch.

    From Hammock activity I've learned to make various loops with amsteel, a non-stretch woven line. Pretty easy with a few tools from JoAnns. But even if knots are involved, with all the holes in the golf wiffle ball, there are lots of attachment options.
     
  7. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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  8. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    Yeah--I will remove the bungee. I just want the ball. :) Already ordered and on its way!
     
  9. Jasper

    Jasper Paddler

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    another option to get a good handhold on the end of a line is a monkeyfist knot: https://www.animatedknots.com/monkeysfist/ I've used them for towbelt buckles, bow and stern toggles, qr-shackle leashes, etc..
     
  10. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    Jasper likes this.
  11. Mac50L

    Mac50L Paddler

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  12. Roy222

    Roy222 Paddler

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    Is the tow line pack worn under or over the spray skirt?
    The very end of the movie clip indicates it is outside or over the spray skirt.
    Roy
     
  13. jamonte

    jamonte Paddler

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    Here's a quick tip about quick release buckles on rescue vests (Type V PFD's) or tow line packs that are worn around your waist: you need to make sure that the tag end of webbing belt (the part that sticks out past the buckle) is no more than two or three inches long. (long enough to allow for extra insulation under your dry suit or a little extra weight loss/gain, but no longer.) If the tag end of the webbing belt is longer than that, then it will take a ton of force in order to cause the belt to release.

    I learned this lesson during a whitewater Swift Water Rescue Class when I was live-baited out to save a trapped swimmer. While I was busy extracting the swimmer (an instructor, of course) he purposely popped open the quick release buckle on my vest (without me knowing it), in order to confound the rescue. But the tag end of my webbing belt was so long it created enough friction that the belt never released even with the weight of two people being pulled across fast current. (that's a LOT of force!) In short, a quick release buckle won't release quickly (or at all) if the tag end of the webbing belt is too long.
     
  14. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    Yes--mine is too long. Someone (a coach!) told me not to cut it because someone fat might need to borrow it some day. ???? I have since decided that is utter bunk and I will be cutting it. The fat guy will just need to get his own. I want to get the ball on first and then put it on in Dec. over dry suit and insulation and cut it shorter.
     
  15. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    Sorry, but I don't understand at all how the length of the 'tag end' would prevent the belt being released.
    If the buckle is open (pulled open with the 'ball thingy') the webbing will slide through- feet of it if necessary. Pull buckle open and hold the buckle open till the webbing pulls free: That's the way I do it.
    If the buckle is only partly open, and not being pulled/held open, are you saying that it will close again, because the tag end friction will close the buckle?

    I find that it is usually easier to pull on the tag end to snap the buckle open, rather than grab the plastic ball tied to the buckle itself.
     
  16. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    I find that I need to use a cutting tip on a soldering gun to cut the webbing at and angle and melt the end cleanly. It can be tricky feeding the webbing into the buckle (when donning the tow belt) if the end gets frayed or thickened at all - the space where the webbing inserts into the buckle isn't that wide, on my tow belts.
     
  17. Jasper

    Jasper Paddler

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    jamonte, Type V PFD's have a metal buckle under the quick release you loop the belt through(like a climbing safety harness) to prevent accidental release in life-bait rescues. You do NOT use this buckle while towing! Seakayak tow belts do not have this buckle and length of the belt has little influence on release force.

    pawsplus, The idea with not cutting the belt is to make it easier and quicker to take turns towing a victim. This could safe some time in a rescue situation, however if its length is unpractical for you by all means cut it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2018
  18. Jasper

    Jasper Paddler

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    I think the idea is that you can unbuckle, pull the entire system off your body, and throw it far away from your decklines, rudder, etc in one movement when that 16' sneaker wave surfs your victim..
     
  19. Jasper

    Jasper Paddler

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    The tow-belt goes outside of the sprayskirt, where you can use it while paddling. I would strongly suggest getting proper training before using one, ropes on kayaks can make a bad situation deadly really quickly..
     
  20. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    John wrote: I find that I need to use a cutting tip on a soldering gun to cut the webbing at an angle and melt the end cleanly.
    A crude substitute for this is a 10 cm/4 inch piece of a retired hacksaw blade, held firmly in vise grips, heated in a propane torch. Quenching in water after each cut will restore the temper of the blade. The edge sans teeth makes smoother cuts than the toothed edge.