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Old 04-20-2022, 09:57 AM   #1
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Question Horseshoe, Ring, or Lifesling?

What's your MOB "throw to" of choice?

We had a Lifesling setup on our cutter and our new (to us) trawler currently has an old horseshoe. The HS is ratty looking and we're looking to replace it - Question is, what should we replace it with? I like the fact that the Lifesling comes in its own case and is protected from the elements, but that also makes for one extra step when deploying. I also think that a ring or horseshoe is also easier to deploy (throw). Any advantages to one over another aside from cost?

I realize that this can get as personal as "What's the best anchor?", but I am interested to hear which people prefer and why.
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Old 04-20-2022, 10:04 AM   #2
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We carry a ring with a long (floating) line attached. It's not only for recovery, but it's in the water any time someone goes swimming, that way there's something to grab onto that's tethered to the boat if needed.

I figure a Lifesling would be of limited utility for us, as other than the soon to be installed dinghy davits, we have no lifting tackle like a sailboat would. So getting someone out of the water will rely on getting them onto the swim platform rather than hoisting them 4 feet up onto the deck.
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Old 04-20-2022, 10:15 AM   #3
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Any device you pick needs to be considered as part of the system you will use to get a helpless MOB back safely aboard. Think person knocked unconscious or in cold water (not likely in Placida). There have been plenty of discussions here over the years about how to recover a person, especially if it is a woman recovering a male partner in a high freeboard vessel like a trawler. A ring is probably not going to be too usefull in such a situation - you would want something which could be arranged under the armpits of the MOB, even if it required jumping in to do it or managing it from the swim platform (goes to my objection to cluttering swim steps with thinks like dinghies).
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Old 04-20-2022, 10:18 AM   #4
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(goes to my objection to cluttering swim steps with thinks like dinghies).

I've had that same thought many times. When lifted in the davits my dinghy would mostly block use of the swim platform (someone could climb onto it, but not up onto the boat). So I've made sure the davit setup is done such that the dinghy can be very quickly dropped in the water by just releasing the lines, one end un-clipped and the dinghy swung out of the way of the boarding ladder.
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Old 04-20-2022, 10:35 AM   #5
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I've had that same thought many times. When lifted in the davits my dinghy would mostly block use of the swim platform (someone could climb onto it, but not up onto the boat). So I've made sure the davit setup is done such that the dinghy can be very quickly dropped in the water by just releasing the lines, one end un-clipped and the dinghy swung out of the way of the boarding ladder.
And ya know, that dink might well be the best way to recover a MOB!
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Old 04-20-2022, 10:56 AM   #6
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In Canada, required safety equipment includes a life ring, on a 15m floating line but NOT Lifesling or Horseshoe, though those both qualify for the requirement to have a floating heaving line of 15m.
In the US the regs may be different.
Getting into a ring while in the water is no more difficult than getting into Lifesling or a Horseshoe. and as with all safety equipment, practice creates familiarity with the equipment.
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Old 04-20-2022, 11:46 AM   #7
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In Canada, required safety equipment includes a life ring, on a 15m floating line but NOT Lifesling or Horseshoe, though those both qualify for the requirement to have a floating heaving line of 15m.
In the US the regs may be different.
Getting into a ring while in the water is no more difficult than getting into Lifesling or a Horseshoe. and as with all safety equipment, practice creates familiarity with the equipment.
15m floating line is not long enough. Not even close to be honest.

STEP 1 in a MOB event is to establish contact between the victim and the veseel. Lifesling is designed so the boat can circle the victim and the line comes to them. Recommendation is the line is at least 3x the LOA of the vessel. Lifesling comes with 150-feet.

STEP 2 is getting the victim back aboard. Only the LIfesling can be used as a lift-harness, though you may need mechanical advantage to re-board the victim.

I carry a Lifesling with 5-part dedicated lifting tackle, and a heaving bag. In my opinion, a heaving bag is a great choice vs a ring that takes an unpredictable flight path when tossed, especially with adverse wind. Here's a good demo by Chuck Hawley of West Marine fame.

Peter

https://youtu.be/T_Fc96Faqxw
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Old 04-20-2022, 11:54 AM   #8
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How do folks like to mount / carry a ring?
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Old 04-20-2022, 12:19 PM   #9
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Life slings and throwable devices serve different purposes. The life sling is used to aid in getting the person back aboard. A throwable is to get the MOB something to help with flotation while you pull them to the vessel with the attached line. Very important in rough weather with wind blowing.

For use by relatively untrained and inexperienced persons I like something like the Rescue Throw Stick Getting a life ring to a MOB in adverse conditions take a bit more practice and skill than many appreciated. On the other hand the throw stick is just that, a throw stick. Pretty much anyone knows how to throw a stick for a dog.
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Old 04-20-2022, 03:09 PM   #10
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Hmmmmm...mix and matching systems/items and proper line length, getting "into" a ring?..... needing a throwable be part of a recovery system???? (OK if it means procedure with multiple components).... can't say much posted would fit my experiences....

I would recommend slowing down and thinking "procedure" and type of occurrence...then add the components as necessary to fit the circumstances you foresee in your cruising style and crew capability.
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Old 04-20-2022, 05:20 PM   #11
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We have two rings actually and three throwables (seat cushion style really). I know horseshoes wouldn't be so common if they weren't effective in some situations, but rings always seemed easier and more useful to me for a weakened MOB. If somebody is near frozen or injured, fooling with the tether across the ends of the horseshoe, even if it's just a plastic quick-clip, has always seemed like an unnecessary complication, and I don't know how you lift somebody out with a horseshoe, or at the very least, don't risk snapping the tether across the ends of the horseshoe during the lifting/pulling. This is an old, pretty poor quality video but illustrates what I mean.

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Old 04-20-2022, 07:20 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DWJensen View Post
What's your MOB "throw to" of choice?

We had a Lifesling setup on our cutter and our new (to us) trawler currently has an old horseshoe. The HS is ratty looking and we're looking to replace it - Question is, what should we replace it with? I like the fact that the Lifesling comes in its own case and is protected from the elements, but that also makes for one extra step when deploying. I also think that a ring or horseshoe is also easier to deploy (throw). Any advantages to one over another aside from cost?

I realize that this can get as personal as "What's the best anchor?", but I am interested to hear which people prefer and why.
Lifesling is great, easy to deploy and does not get tangled like a coiled line hooked to a ring out in the open can. The downside is that the case is not UV protected and will deteriorate in 3 years in the Caribbean. We had a bimini made and our canvas guy custom made a over-case out of matching sunbrella which he "threw in for free" which was nice! Sadly I sold it with the boat, should have kept it for my current one.
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Old 04-20-2022, 07:36 PM   #13
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Lifesling is no replacement for a decent throwable and a decent throwable is no replacement for a toss stick, bag, whatever....and they are not replacements for a lifesling or equivalent.

3 different needs, 3 different tools.....some overlap but not always.
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Old 04-20-2022, 08:05 PM   #14
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Lifesling is no replacement for a decent throwable and a decent throwable is no replacement for a toss stick, bag, whatever....and they are not replacements for a lifesling or equivalent.

3 different needs, 3 different tools.....some overlap but not always.
Agree. For us throwable + Lifesling. When we go offshore we will add a stick. I had to make my own to cross the Atlantic when I was stuck in the Canaries with no ability to source one. I had a local RIB shop make this up with a gas cannister. Here is the 'sea trial'

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Old 04-20-2022, 09:04 PM   #15
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Recently had a MOB on purpose for a swim around the anchored boat. Me, I suspect all may not be well, so grab the ring attached to 15m of line and toss it within reach. MOB grabs it and swims back to the boat.
Few words were exchanged, thanks was one of them.

You never know when you need to use what you have on board, practice is a must with the gear you have. Have you ever recovered a ball cap, try it. That lifeless cap is your better half, get it before it sinks.
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Old 04-25-2022, 01:40 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by DWJensen View Post
What's your MOB "throw to" of choice?

We had a Lifesling setup on our cutter and our new (to us) trawler currently has an old horseshoe. The HS is ratty looking and we're looking to replace it - Question is, what should we replace it with? I like the fact that the Lifesling comes in its own case and is protected from the elements, but that also makes for one extra step when deploying. I also think that a ring or horseshoe is also easier to deploy (throw). Any advantages to one over another aside from cost?

I realize that this can get as personal as "What's the best anchor?", but I am interested to hear which people prefer and why.
===============================

not necessarily answering your question,when I bought my new/old boat came with a mounted sling,was badly damaged by the UV
looking at a bag replacement was surprised the cost.

The following are current quoted prices on WM

LIFESLING–Replacement Storage Bags for Lifesling2
(30)4 stars, 30 Reviews, skips to reviews
Prices from $64.99 - To$99.99
Select Product:

Replacement Storage Bag for Lifesling2, Original White Vinyl $64.99
$64.99

----------------------------------
Decided on a Ring,take it home if the boat will not be used for several months.

Besides looks more "nautical"
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Old 04-25-2022, 04:04 PM   #17
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Why not both?

Sailed and ocean raced all my life on pretty good boats. Several Bermuda Races, Fastnet, SORC etc. All of our boats had at least 2 of each, which is undoubtedly overkill, but cannot imagine the reasoning behind “one or the other”. They don’t take up any space and if you need to grab and throw in a crisis, most important is how and where you steer, but just the ability to throw is paramount. I wouldn’t worry about how to get someone aboard, I would worry about how to save their life. If you don’t study how to keep a boat on station, you are missing the largest part of the conversation. I have two of each on board, and they service both port and starboard sides. I have no idea why anyone would equivocate and decide on one or the other. Just based upon my years of experience.
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Old 04-25-2022, 04:43 PM   #18
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Sailed and ocean raced all my life on pretty good boats. Several Bermuda Races, Fastnet, SORC etc. All of our boats had at least 2 of each, which is undoubtedly overkill, but cannot imagine the reasoning behind “one or the other”. They don’t take up any space and if you need to grab and throw in a crisis, most important is how and where you steer, but just the ability to throw is paramount. I wouldn’t worry about how to get someone aboard, I would worry about how to save their life. If you don’t study how to keep a boat on station, you are missing the largest part of the conversation. I have two of each on board, and they service both port and starboard sides. I have no idea why anyone would equivocate and decide on one or the other. Just based upon my years of experience.
I don't disagree with you generally on your main point -- finding and maneuvering to the MOB is the most immediate challenge of course. Just as you say, if you can't do that then any equipment is tragically useless. But assuming you've met that first challenge, I think equipment does matter. Thankfully I've never been in a real life retrieval crisis, but the nearest I can compare it to is my commercial diving days. After working like a dog all day underwater feeling neutrally buoyant, with a (Desco) helmet and a weight belt on, in the winter, you come out of the water and it feels like you weigh 900 lbs and all your muscles are shaky. When there wasn't a ladder available and a crane or davit would lift us up and out, we used rings -- big rings, or a wire lifting sling. One leg through a ring, or one foot in the eye of a sling, and we could ride it up. Of course a MOB is different, we never got our heads through the rings because they'd never fit over the helmet and water, air and radio lines, but it seems to me weakened people in the water need whatever equipment takes the least effort and agility to hang onto. We never used horseshoes to climb up and out. But maybe my perspective is skewed from personal experience.
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Old 04-25-2022, 04:53 PM   #19
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A life ring is USCG required on CG inspected vessels and should be on all others. If you have ever had to throw one the life ring is the best (and I have).

The life sling is better once you get the person alongside.
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Old 04-25-2022, 05:23 PM   #20
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A life ring is USCG required on CG inspected vessels and should be on all others. If you have ever had to throw one the life ring is the best (and I have).

The life sling is better once you get the person alongside.
Not sure if everyone knows the ins and outs of a Lifesling and how they were designed to be used.

Lifeslings aren't only designed for alongside....there is a specific recommended technique when underway. Their drawback is if you are stationary. But are designed with lifting aboard if you can rig for it.

Rings are easy to toss, but most screw up the line payout or wind blowback on the line.

Thus my previous post saying there are types of gear best used while underway, best for throwing when stationary to get floatation out to a PIW and throw bags/balls/frisbees that are better throwables where the line is better managed, but their floatation isn't great. But it might not be necessary if the PIW already has floatation.

Lots of things to think about...rarely are emergencies "canned".
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