Please Safety Wire Your Shackles AND Do It Correctly

Here's my latest WTF moment/find.

https://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=135527&g2_serialNumber=3

Coated AWG 14 solid copper wire as safety wire. Please do not do this. Yes, maybe in a pinch temporarily, but not as a permanent installation. At least who ever did this had safety wire holes in the shackle pin heads and knew that backout restraint was necessary. Many of the shackles I come across these days don't have the holes and you must drill them yourself (yes, even the name brand stuff). I see many folks these days with no safety wire anywhere and I stay as far away from them as possible for obvious reasons. Here is the correct wire (you can buy it many other places) and technique. I use 0.032" diameter wire some folks use 0.041" diameter.

https://www.fastenal.com/products/details/0985093

https://youtu.be/7Xck44xYeaE

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Hobie 16 (3 formerly)
MacGregor 25 (formerly)
Chrysler Dagger 14 (formerly)
NACRA 5.0 (currently)
High Point, NC
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My H16 came with electrical wire everywhere, including in place of a ring or cotter pin on pins that hold the shrouds. Pretty scary. That's all gone now.

Here is another source - Aircraft Spruce. You can buy a 1-lb can like in the fastenal link or they also offer 25' sections for not much money. You could get 25' of .032 and .041 for $2.50 plus postage.
https://www.aircraftspruc…ywire2.php?clickkey=4386

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Bryan in Poplar Grove, IL
Supercat 17, unknown year. Future project
Hobie 16, 1977 - died a spectacular death https://youtu.be/Y7O22bp2MVA
Hobie 16, 1978 - current boat
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Maybe I’ll get slammed for this one, but for the past several years I have just been using a plastic zip tie through the hole in the shackle pin and secured to the body of the shackle. It seems to work totally fine and is cleaner/easier to remove when I take the shrouds off at the end of the season. I typically back it up with a coating of blue (medium strength) Loctite on the threads and a nice firm tightening of the pin with a pair of pliers.

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DogboyMaybe I’ll get slammed for this one, but for the past several years I have just been using a plastic zip tie through the hole in the shackle pin and secured to the body of the shackle. It seems to work totally fine and is cleaner/easier to remove when I take the shrouds off at the end of the season. I typically back it up with a coating of blue (medium strength) Loctite on the threads and a nice firm tightening of the pin with a pair of pliers.

sm

I do that too, and the last sentence is the most important, the plastic cable tie is more for peace of mind.
Decades ago, when wandering through the hangar, I would talk with AME’s & was shown how to use those specialized pliers. I still have a roll of the SS wire.
I don’t believe that is necessary, or even effective on a beach cat. The copper wire was done in a bit of a mess, but a single loop twisted is quite sufficient, the Nacra manual says you can use a bit of string on the Diamond wire turnbuckles.
Aircraft exhibit much greater torques & vibration. If I were helming a Vendee Globe boat I might.
There is a major difference between what that AME was doing with the propeller bolts & our rigging. One word- TORQUE.
Those bolts might experience a torque, which might undo them, leading to catastrophic failure. Our shrouds, & most of the rigging is secured by pins, which are under shear load- there is no torque trying to undo them. The safety required is a physical means of preventing the pin from sliding out.
Usually this is prevented by the double shear load on the pin, however, if the rigging goes slack, the pin could move. A bent cotter pin or ring ding prevents the pin from sliding out.
My Diamond wires are cotter pinned, everything else is ring dinged, with the ring folded over, then taped to prevent being snagged.
As for shackles that employ a threaded pin, you will notice a small, but significant difference between these pins & a bolt.
When you do them up, you will feel the thread get snug, then turning a bit more, (with pliers), it feels like they go “over Center”. This is the locking mechanism.
For what it’s worth, I asked the guy who built my new rigging about safety locking them.
He won a gold medal,
Sailing a Tornado,
At the Olympics.
He said...”not required, they won’t come undone.”
I generally tape, in a figure 8, around the flat head of the pin, but I would never go to the trouble of using lock wire pliers. Lock wire has a nasty habit of forming meat hooks. I would also never bother with blue loctite , unless maybe I was a Round the world ocean racer.
As Dog boy said, a zip tie is sufficient.
The only place I use lock wire is through the turn buckle on the Diamond wires, & to secure the steering U-joints on the Nacra tiller tie. The steering U joints was done on advice from a member here. I did it as a temporary solution...but it’s been 7 years now. It’s on my To-Do list, honest.

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Hobie 18 Magnum
Dart 15
Mystere 6.0XL Sold Was a handful solo
Nacra 5.7
Nacra 5.0
Bombardier Invitation (Now officially DEAD)
Various other Dock cluttering WaterCrap
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I'm with you on that. I have a little coil of SS lock wire in my kit "just because", but I've never actually used it. I tighten a little past finger-tight with a shackle key or pliers - whichever is handy - and it's never been a problem because there just isn't enough vibration. If you like it for "peace of mind", fill your boots, there's no harm in it. A ball of copper (whether tin-plated or not) is just dopey. And while I'm okay with plastic wire ties in spots (black, because they'll tolerate the UV), there's a special place in hell reserved for anyone who uses them, doesn't cut the tails off ABSOLUTELY FLUSH, and instead leaves a jagged end.



Edited by jonathan162 on Sep 03, 2021 - 10:26 AM.

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Southern Alberta and all over the damn place.
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1983 SuperCat 19
TriFoiler #23 "Unfair Advantage"
Mystere 17
H18 & Zygal (classic) Tornado - stolen and presumed destroyed by evil people. Very unpleasant story.
Invitation and Mistral and Sunflower and windsurfers w/ Harken hydrofoils and god knows what else...
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jonathan162I'm with you on that.


Yep, right out of the Hobie 16 manual (and every other Hobie manual I've ever seen). Mr. Alter knew what to do and it's proven a safe practice for decades. Not sure why anyone would say it's not necessary. They don't put holes in shackle pin heads for fun, it's for safety. Besides it just takes a minute and cost pennies.

https://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=135583&g2_serialNumber=4

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Hobie 16 (3 formerly)
MacGregor 25 (formerly)
Chrysler Dagger 14 (formerly)
NACRA 5.0 (currently)
High Point, NC
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That photo should be a lesson in how NOT to use lock wire.
No one with any experience in aviation would do such an amateur job.
That meat hook end is just waiting to stab holes in your sail, or your flesh.
Actually, holes in the pin are often used to attach a lanyard to prevent pin loss.
No harm in securing them, but lock wire pliers are an expensive solution, IIRC they were$100, thirty years ago, though maybe Chinese ones are cheaper today.

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Hobie 18 Magnum
Dart 15
Mystere 6.0XL Sold Was a handful solo
Nacra 5.7
Nacra 5.0
Bombardier Invitation (Now officially DEAD)
Various other Dock cluttering WaterCrap
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