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Postby thomas » Tue Aug 11, 2009 10:26 pm

When using an eye splice with a shackle, say for main or jib halyards, is it recommended to add a thimble inside the eye splice or is this overkill?
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Postby GreenLake » Wed Aug 12, 2009 1:23 am

I can't quite get around to thinking of these thimbles as overkill. The inside of an eye splice doesn't strike me as a place where I'd want to see chafe that could be avoided by a thimble, and I'm not sure I'd be comfortable with the sharp bend around a shackle. Especially for halyards that are fairly loaded.

That said, I can't tell you whether these are absolutely required.

What is your concern? Saving on a bit of weight aloft? Saving a step in making a splice, or the few $$ for the hardware?

If you don't want a thimble, why not go with an anchor hitch around your shackle (assuming it's wide enough)? That would at least distribute the load across two turns of the line. And you'd save yourself the trouble of splicing.

The reduction in breaking strength from using a knot instead of a splice might not actually be significant, given that halyards are often a bit oversized so they can be handled more easily. Also, compared to an eyesplice without a thimble (where you stick a thin shackle directly through an eye splice), I would imagine that a knot should not be as much at a disadvantage as compared to the splice with thimble.
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