Topic of Discussion TOD: Vehicle recovery

Samuraiman

Sand Pile
Location
St George Utah
Chain

tiny2085 said:
Wow! that guy in the movie is lucky!!! I have never seen a chain break, but it seems like it would also snap and act as a projectile, butsting a windshield and more. Any one ever seen a chain break?

I hit the end of a brand new chain in my sammy and broke it in two pulling a chevy out of the mud.
 

4x4phil

Registered User
Location
Salt Lake City
I've never, ever, been pulled out of a situation by a winch. It's never been needed. A shovel, a friend that's not stuck,a hi-lift jack, and a strap (sometimes multiple) have done the job very well. But then again I'm not stupid enough to attempt things beyond the potetial of my recovery equipement. If you don't have a winch, don't try stuff where you'll need one. Don't ever go wheeling alone. Your best recovery tool is most often your freind's rig. I think everybody should always have a friend, jack, strap and shovel. You'll need those for every trail and they'll get you out 99% of the time. Most of the time if I see a person that can't get out with those items I question their intelligence for getting into a situation that they can't get out of. I've seen acceptions to that rule, but not many.
 

Todd Adams

Grammy's Spotter
Location
Salt Lake City
Years ago, when a wheeling rollover was rare, a friend of mine told me that if you haven’t been on both ends of a strap you haven’t really been wheeling.

Now days the equipment is better and the some of the trails are much tougher and rollovers are very common. So I would have to say that if you haven’t been on both ends of a winch you haven’t really been wheeling.

With that being said, anything can happen to anybody at any time and expect the unexpected. As far as I am concerned, if you are going to wheel, a winch should be one of the first upgrades you make. Besides, once you have one there is a lot of cool stuff you can do with one other than vehicle recovery.

After reading this tread I see no mention of vehicles being recovered that the driver has gotten into a spot that he can’t get out of. I have been involved with several of these type of recoveries and as far as I am concerned are not only the scariest but most dangerous types of recovery. One of these that hit the national news a few years back was the Texans that drove their rig to the end of a goat path high in the Colorado Rocky Mountains.

The reason I mention this is that there is no substitute for experience. I know many wheelers that have never used their winch. If you feel like you are not 100% comfortable using one, go out with you friends and play. See just what it will do before you need to use it.

Oh yea these tools are not maintenance free and you should always make sure it works before each trip. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen winches fail to operate.
 

willies45

willies45
Location
Lander, Wyoming
I have seen all types of wire come apart . we were pulling a 77 150 short bed out of the snow with a brand new 12000 with the hook to a chain around a boulder and it separated about half way from the truck. I was a user of chains for years as that was all we had and I was so glad when snatch straps came allong. no more broken windows ,torn frame ,twisted bumpers. Also you can pull out a much heavier vehicle because of the stretch and return of the strap. There are places that a chain is still my first choice especially if the is a sharp or wearing edge. Thats why I still carry both. :)
 

jdub

Scrambler
Location
Provo, Utah.
Very usefull info. I have one kink in my wire cable and one fray. If I dont want to replace a synthetic every year or so should I do a cable one for longevity? Do those winch covers help?
I'm scared too with the cable, but won't the synthetic have just as much force when snapped? Sounds silly but very interesting, I caught a episode of mythbusters recently which was very aplicabe to this thread. They tested the damaging effects of a snapping cable with dead pigs to show what it would do to a person. Alarmingly the cable never cut the skin. The most damaging was the Nylon/Synthetic. Gave a nasty rope burn.

Does the rope or cable have more elasticity?
 

cruiseroutfit

Cruizah!
Moderator
Premium Vendor
Location
Sandy, Ut
What do any of you use to high-lift a vehicle with round bumpers? the jack doesn't like round bumpers. Chains, straps?

Buy or make something like this... I welded up something similar (it was a bit wider so it made the jacking more stable), but it has been lost along the way? I'll nuke up another one of these days...

EDIT: Link would help :D
http://www.wabfab.org/products/sa/sa.htm
 
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I Lean

Mbryson's hairdresser
Supporting Vendor
Location
Utah
Very usefull info. I have one kink in my wire cable and one fray. If I dont want to replace a synthetic every year or so should I do a cable one for longevity? Do those winch covers help?
I'm scared too with the cable, but won't the synthetic have just as much force when snapped? Sounds silly but very interesting, I caught a episode of mythbusters recently which was very aplicabe to this thread. They tested the damaging effects of a snapping cable with dead pigs to show what it would do to a person. Alarmingly the cable never cut the skin. The most damaging was the Nylon/Synthetic. Gave a nasty rope burn.

Does the rope or cable have more elasticity?

I'd like to see that episode of Mythbusters. I've personally witnessed both cable and synthetic rope break. The cable snapped back with enough force to dent the hood of the rig, definitely would have hurt badly if someone would have been in the way. Synthetic just kinda drops to the ground--even if it stretches an equivalent amount, it just doesn't have the mass to keep going by itself.

I also don't see any reason you'd need to replace synthetic every year. I think with a lot of care wire rope may outlast synthetic, but if you're as lazy while winching as I am, you'll destroy your cable in the first use. (have flat spots/kinks or fraying)
 

jdub

Scrambler
Location
Provo, Utah.
Buy or make something like this... I welded up something similar (it was a bit wider so it made the jacking more stable), but it has been lost along the way? I'll nuke up another one of these days...


Way cool!!! It's got the wheels turning in my head. $60 seems fair but tons of cash at the same time. I see why you made your own. thanx
 

jdub

Scrambler
Location
Provo, Utah.
It's ep 326 aired on 10-11-06.... I haven't watched it yet.

You have to take Mythbusters with a grain of salt... thier "science" isn't always spot on.

Totally true. I sat there watching the episde hoping for a few differint angles to see what the cable would do. Still very interesting.

Anyone know if the "myth" of putting a blanket/mat or any type of covering over the middle of the rope/cable would have any effect against injury?
 

cruiseroutfit

Cruizah!
Moderator
Premium Vendor
Location
Sandy, Ut
...Way cool!!! It's got the wheels turning in my head. $60 seems fair but tons of cash at the same time. I see why you made your own. thanx

Actually I made my own ~ 5 years ago, long before Wabfab started selling them... I actually prefered mine better, the tube portion was ~8" long so you really had some added stability (really needed with a hi-lift). The extra length makes it hard for the vehicle to "roll" off the jack.
 

waynehartwig

www.jeeperman.com
Location
Mead, WA
It seems like I'm always getting called upon for recovery efforts. Between my large winch and willingness to help out... I bet I've done probably a dozen just this summer alone. Typically all it's taken was my equipment and possibly an anchor to hook to my rig. Which are cable, and straps. But I did a recovery a few months ago that took even more. I used chains, straps, cable, snatch block, two winches, and three vehicles for anchor points - oh, and lots of big thick moving blankets!

The key to the recovery was being able to think clearly about how the safest way to do it is, without hurting people or rigs. Then going back to what everyone had in their tool boxes to see if we could make it work. Everything we needed, I have with me at all times. I just didn't have the quantities.

On the flipside, yes I use my winch a lot, and yes it still has cable - 7/16". After each use, it get's wound up and put away correctly. Even if someone has already taken the time to wind it up for me, if I don't like the way it's laying, I do it over. I've thought of going to rope, but the cost is way too high for a rope that can handle 33klbs (double winch capacity). My cable is a litlte over 2 years old and it's still in great shape, no freys or kinks, so I'll continue to use it. But when I do use it, I make everyone stand well away from it. I did when it was new, and I will continue.

I have seen a cable break. Nobody was killed, but when it broke, it wrapped around the guys legs that was running the winch and dropped him to his knees. On later inspection, it left two large raspberrys/burn/abrasion marks. I think he was lucky to only have that happen to him.... I've also seen the effects of the cheapy sewn in hooks on tow straps (Harbor Frieght stuff) and someone should campaign against them to pull their stock. They are lethal!!! One recovery I did about a year ago, they had some of these and tried to pull the guy out of the mud before I was called upon. Brand new Dodge 2500, one of the straps broke and now he has big dents on the top of his rig and the tailgate.
 

gijohn40

too poor to wheel... :(
Location
Layton, Utah
like Wayne said I also have a 12,000 lb winch and from what I saw the rope was not to be used for anything larger than 9000 lb... so I stopped looking... that was a few years ago and things should have changed by now...

I have had my wire rope on the winch for 6 yrs now and not one bit of trouble with it. I use chain saw oil to and wd-40 to keep it clean and lubed... and I when I am done using it I pull it out all the way and tie it to something strong and then I set the e brake and winch in all the cable... this provides enough tension to keep it tight and not allow it to get caught up inbetween itself....
I have used mine up in wyoming where I use to live and pulled everything from stuck cars and trucks up to a semi stuck in a snow drift out.... my winch in on my expedition which weight in at 7500 lbs and I have even used my winch to lift the front end of my expedition straight up in the air...

one of the best things I have for my winch is a wireless remote control... I can actually be 100 feet away and run my winch so no one has to be in the dead zone if the cable where to break... (I saw a army 5 ton winch cable (1 inch thick) break once and tear up the front of the other 5 ton).
 

RockMonkey

Suddenly Enthusiastic
Super Moderator
I'm not in the mood today to argue wire vs synthetic rope, but I do want to dispell the myth that you have to replace synthetic rope each year. Totally untrue. I have never replaced mine. I've had it since UROC started requiring it. 4 or 5 years ago. Something like that. It's seen a LOT of very hard use. I have a brand new one sitting in the garage, but I have not yet had any reason to put it on.
 

BlackSheep

baaaaaaaaaad to the bone
Super Moderator
Supporting Member
I'm not in the mood today to argue wire vs synthetic rope, but I do want to dispell the myth that you have to replace synthetic rope each year. Totally untrue. I have never replaced mine. I've had it since UROC started requiring it. 4 or 5 years ago. Something like that. It's seen a LOT of very hard use. I have a brand new one sitting in the garage, but I have not yet had any reason to put it on.

you can't tell me you are still using the one that broke on my obstacle - I think it was cedar city in 2003. I was very surprised when that thing snapped, it dropped straight to the ground. I was very happy as I wasn't interested in my rig getting busted up by a snapped cable. The rope worked exactly as advertised when it broke.
 

erocrocks

Active Member
Location
Lehi, UT
"Did you guys know that Amsteel Blue floats?" so rocky monkey, you are sponserored or what by amsteel?

i have never seen them break, but what about when you have to pull over a cliff, or edge, or you have to wrap around something, wouldnt the synth rope tear and break?
 
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