Shackles - Drings or Soft? What is good and What is dangerous?

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Boort

Rank VI
Member

Advocate II

3,765
Colorado
Member #

9314

Hi all,

Started looking for some D-rings or Shackles this week and not sure what to look for.
None of the shops around here have much of anything in stock to actually look at and with the county wide power outage yesterday not much open to browse on my day off anyways.

What are the Pros/Cons between D-Ring Shackles and Soft Shackles?
(I'm thinking less of a projectile / grenade if soft ones break?)

As for Mounting to my rig the Taco has hooks up front, and I'm looking to get some recovery points for the the front of the 4Runner If I get a tax refund. Out back both have Tow Receivers so I was looking to either get a Receiver D-ring or for a while use the Recovery Strap right into the Receiver with the pin and risk abrasion If I ever need it.

I looked at the Horrible Fright Receiver Hitch D-Ring and was very concerned that it would kill some one ( https://www.harborfreight.com/d-ring-receiver-hitch-66212.html ). They say it has a "load capacity: 10,000 lbs" I don't know that I'd hang a hammock from it let alone try a recovery. The D-ring attachments go through a hole in the receiver tube endcap and are welded to it. On all examples I picked up I could see light through gaps in the welds. Not even worth the $9.99. HF compared it to the "Rugged Ridge 11234.01" which looks much sturdier cast receiver @$35+Shipping but I've not seen it in person. Looking around the web I see these going for the $10 at HF up to nearly $200 US in all kinds of sizes, materials, and "ratings".

I'd like to be able to use them with either the Tacoma or 4Runner.

What should I be looking for?
What to you recommend?
Size rating?

Thank you for your advice and input!
Boort
 

slomatt

Rank V

Traveler I

1,912
Bay Area, CA
Hi Boort,

I'd recommend reading some of the recovery related posts on this forum, they have a wealth of knowledge. Here are a few comments that might help in your search.

- In my opinion creating your recovery kit starts with two things: a) recovery points and b) deciding what loads you need to handle.

- It sounds like you have already started looking into recovery points. A hitch mounted D-ring is a good option for the rear. I've got both a Rhino USA shackle hitch receiver from Amazon and one made by Warn and both seem well made. On the higher budget side there are products like the Factor 55 Hitch link. My recommend is to go with something with a high enough rating (more below) and made by a reputable brand. In general factory tow hooks are not good recovery points since ropes can slip off the hooks, and they are often only rated for recovery and not towing.

- A good starting point is to determine what weight rating you need for your recovery gear based on the weight of your truck. I recommend reading about working load limit (WLL) and minimum breaking strength (MBS) and the relationship between these two measurements. One good rule of thumb is to focus on MBS and then apply a safety factor (2:1, 3:1, etc) of your choice to determine WLL.

- In general soft shackles are lighter than metal ones but take up more storage space. They are often not as strong as metal shackles, but as you mentioned they are less of a projectile if they break. If the shackle is at the end of the line (ex. vehicle attachment) and it breaks then anything in the middle such as a snatch block will still go flying.

Hope thing helps to give you some things to consider when planning your recovery kit.
 

Dilldog

Rank V

Advocate II

2,049
Spokane, WA.
First Name
Dillon
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W
What I have always been told is straight flat land pull you want equipment rated at 1x vehicle weight, for an up hill pull you want 1.5x, for a rig burreid up the the axles or being pulled over rocks about half the size of the tires you need 2.5x, if you are trying to pull a rig over rocks where body and frame is dragging or it is burried to the frame you need 3.5x vehicle weight. For most of us this means we should be packing recovery gear in 20K working load limit range. As a note all of my recovery "fittings" came from local industrial rigging supply shops, as I found the 4x4 shops at the time didnt stock anything over 10K WLL. Also make sure you get a snatch strap with sewn ends. Snatch straps are important as they have a bit of stretch in them so they help big time when it comes time to tug on stuff.
 
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slomatt

Rank V

Traveler I

1,912
Bay Area, CA
Good point about the gradient and surface resistance multipliers. There is a good write up at:
http://www.billavista.com/tech/Articles/Recovery_Bible/index.html

One thing to note is that 3x vehicle weight in most cases is much higher than a standard winch can generate. If you figure a loaded 4Runner can pretty easily hit GVWR (~6k) then for a 3x multiplier you'd need a winch that can pull 18k lbs which would be expensive and hard to fit on the truck. Alternatively you can assume a 9k winch will pull that using the bottom layer of wraps on the drum and a pulley block.
 

Dilldog

Rank V

Advocate II

2,049
Spokane, WA.
First Name
Dillon
Last Name
W
Good point about the gradient and surface resistance multipliers. There is a good write up at:
http://www.billavista.com/tech/Articles/Recovery_Bible/index.html

One thing to note is that 3x vehicle weight in most cases is much higher than a standard winch can generate. If you figure a loaded 4Runner can pretty easily hit GVWR (~6k) then for a 3x multiplier you'd need a winch that can pull 18k lbs which would be expensive and hard to fit on the truck. Alternatively you can assume a 9k winch will pull that using the bottom layer of wraps on the drum and a pulley block.
With winches you need to remember that the rating is at maximum duty cycle. Most winches will pull a few times their rating so long as you adjust duty cycle appropriately.
 
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smritte

Rank VI
Member

Traveler I

3,857
Ontario California
Member #

8846

Ham Callsign
KO6BI
I've never used the soft shackles. I keep looking at them though. My kit has 4 D-Rings plus what's on my bumpers. Knowing where not to use them is very important. I have never seen one become a projectile but, damn they would do some damage. All of mine are rated way higher than I need so I'm not worried about breakage.
Watching people use D-Ring's to join two or three snatch straps is terrifying.

As for winch's, I have always run 12k. If you buy good, the newer design's are better power and strength wise. With all the Adopt a Trail work I have done over the last several decades, I've gotten to see how about every winch made holds up to abuse. I know people like smaller but when I can almost stall a 12k warn, pulling someone out of the mud, that tells you the 9k wouldn't have stood a chance.

Scott
 
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Desert Runner

Rank VI
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Influencer I

3,857
Southern Nevada
First Name
Jerold
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F.
Member #

14991

Hi Boort,

I'd recommend reading some of the recovery related posts on this forum, they have a wealth of knowledge. Here are a few comments that might help in your search.

- In my opinion creating your recovery kit starts with two things: a) recovery points and b) deciding what loads you need to handle.

- It sounds like you have already started looking into recovery points. A hitch mounted D-ring is a good option for the rear. I've got both a Rhino USA shackle hitch receiver from Amazon and one made by Warn and both seem well made. On the higher budget side there are products like the Factor 55 Hitch link. My recommend is to go with something with a high enough rating (more below) and made by a reputable brand. In general factory tow hooks are not good recovery points since ropes can slip off the hooks, and they are often only rated for recovery and not towing.

- A good starting point is to determine what weight rating you need for your recovery gear based on the weight of your truck. I recommend reading about working load limit (WLL) and minimum breaking strength (MBS) and the relationship between these two measurements. One good rule of thumb is to focus on MBS and then apply a safety factor (2:1, 3:1, etc) of your choice to determine WLL.

- In general soft shackles are lighter than metal ones but take up more storage space. They are often not as strong as metal shackles, but as you mentioned they are less of a projectile if they break. If the shackle is at the end of the line (ex. vehicle attachment) and it breaks then anything in the middle such as a snatch block will still go flying.

Hope thing helps to give you some things to consider when planning your recovery kit.
SOFT SHACKLE,......Buy a oversize one. Let it be stronger than the strap it will be attached to. Where the soft shackle attaches to, will be the weakest point of the recovery.
If using a steel shackle, it will have a breaking limit higher than any strap short of a maritime one. That's assuming a 3/4 or 7/8 inch size.
The evolution of recovery gear is on going, and what was acceptable 10 years ago, is now outdated in a lot of situations. Safety has become a easier option in a stressful endeavor. A GOOD THING...most would agree.
 
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Boort

Rank VI
Member

Advocate II

3,765
Colorado
Member #

9314

@Desert Runner
SOFT SHACKLE,......Buy a oversize one. Let it be stronger than the strap it will be attached to. Where the soft shackle attaches to, will be the weakest point of the recovery.
If using a steel shackle, it will have a breaking limit higher than any strap short of a maritime one. That's assuming a 3/4 or 7/8 inch size.
The evolution of recovery gear is on going, and what was acceptable 10 years ago, is now outdated in a lot of situations. Safety has become a easier option in a stressful endeavor. A GOOD THING...most would agree.
Much agree on your points of evolution and safety coming easier these days. Been doing a lot of research on recovery the last few weeks. Ronny Dahl's winch cable destruction video convinced me of the utility of the soft shackles and how much I really DON'T want a couple of pounds of steel flying around if something breaks. Funny thing is that I've seen soft shakles used on sail boats for years and never thought about them for offroad.

Now just gotta get some recovery points for the front of my rig to attach them to.

Boort
 

Desert Runner

Rank VI
Member

Influencer I

3,857
Southern Nevada
First Name
Jerold
Last Name
F.
Member #

14991

Good point about the gradient and surface resistance multipliers. There is a good write up at:
BillaVista.com-Recovery Bible Tech Article by BillaVista

One thing to note is that 3x vehicle weight in most cases is much higher than a standard winch can generate. If you figure a loaded 4Runner can pretty easily hit GVWR (~6k) then for a 3x multiplier you'd need a winch that can pull 18k lbs which would be expensive and hard to fit on the truck. Alternatively you can assume a 9k winch will pull that using the bottom layer of wraps on the drum and a pulley block.
Some good info here. For those thinking the 1.5x or 2x, winch size, plan on 1 snatch block. 2 would be better, as would the appropriate shackles. AND.....GET A LINE DAMPNER.

True about winch size....many 10k and 12k have very similar dimensions. Research this question. Wt. Will also be similar. If
The wt. Becomes a concern, do the synthetic line, you will save a few pounds,..... okay some
 
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Desert Runner

Rank VI
Member

Influencer I

3,857
Southern Nevada
First Name
Jerold
Last Name
F.
Member #

14991

Hi all,

Started looking for some D-rings or Shackles this week and not sure what to look for.
None of the shops around here have much of anything in stock to actually look at and with the county wide power outage yesterday not much open to browse on my day off anyways.

What are the Pros/Cons between D-Ring Shackles and Soft Shackles?
(I'm thinking less of a projectile / grenade if soft ones break?)

As for Mounting to my rig the Taco has hooks up front, and I'm looking to get some recovery points for the the front of the 4Runner If I get a tax refund. Out back both have Tow Receivers so I was looking to either get a Receiver D-ring or for a while use the Recovery Strap right into the Receiver with the pin and risk abrasion If I ever need it.

I looked at the Horrible Fright Receiver Hitch D-Ring and was very concerned that it would kill some one ( D-Ring Receiver Hitch ). They say it has a "load capacity: 10,000 lbs" I don't know that I'd hang a hammock from it let alone try a recovery. The D-ring attachments go through a hole in the receiver tube endcap and are welded to it. On all examples I picked up I could see light through gaps in the welds. Not even worth the $9.99. HF compared it to the "Rugged Ridge 11234.01" which looks much sturdier cast receiver @$35+Shipping but I've not seen it in person. Looking around the web I see these going for the $10 at HF up to nearly $200 US in all kinds of sizes, materials, and "ratings".

I'd like to be able to use them with either the Tacoma or 4Runner.

What should I be looking for?
What to you recommend?
Size rating?

Thank you for your advice and input!
Boort
Having a Toyota makes it simpler than other brands. ARB has a very nice one for the front end. There are other companies that over similar for the front end. A left/right dual recovery system. But they require some research. It's to bad Australian companies do not export more to the USA.

A WARN, SMITTYBILT, FACTOR 5, rear receiver point will handle HARBOR freight concerns. I think that receiver hitch is geared more towards the ATV crowd.