Ratchet Straps for Tie Down?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by CC268, Dec 1, 2017.

  1. CC268

    CC268 En-Route

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    Just wondering if anyone has used or uses ratchet straps for outside tie downs (in my case just at other airports, since we have a hangar)?

    Thanks.
     
  2. saddletramp

    saddletramp Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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    They are probably not the best for tie downs. I say that because the ones I've seen used are usually ratcheted way too tight. Ropes have the advantage of having a little stretch in them to help absorb some of the stress in high winds.

    That said. I carry a set in my 182 & use them when flying to other airports. If the destination airport has ropes or chains that are in good shape I use them first. The straps are in an emergency & are quick to use.

    I see lots of ratchet straps being used however.
     
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  3. danhagan

    danhagan Cleared for Takeoff

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    That's all they use at KEDC Austin Exec
     
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  4. Matthew K

    Matthew K Line Up and Wait

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    I'm not the biggest fan of using rope, mostly because it takes a few seconds longer to put the plane up. I like the adjustable straps like this, "safer" than ratchet straps, but with the same convenience.
    [​IMG]
     
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  5. AWACSEng

    AWACSEng Cleared for Takeoff

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    This is what we use at the club I fly with.
     
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  6. CC268

    CC268 En-Route

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    The only thing that scares me about these is they lose their ability to grip the strap over time and let loose. I say that because I am all too familiar with these straps as I use them on my motocross bike (grew up racing motocross). Overall it shouldn't be an issue, but it is something to keep an eye on.
     
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  7. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I'm having a hard time telling in your picture, but I'd be leery of any tie down that relies on a simple open hook at the airplane. My first trip to Oshkosh we had a storm come through with enough rocking and rolling (coupled with soft ground) that resulted in the S hook jumping out of the tiedown ring. Fortunately I had some good old fashioned rope to retie the aircraft with afterward.
     
  8. AWACSEng

    AWACSEng Cleared for Takeoff

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    The ones we use have 2 opposing s hooks to form a closed loop on the tie down point.
     
  9. Dbarbee

    Dbarbee Pre-Flight

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    I've used ratchet straps before and they're OK as long as you don't get carried away cinching them down. Now I carry the type pictured by Matthew K. Compared to rope they're much easier to put on and I can get them much snugger. I don't use them often enough to wear them out, and even If I did, they're not that expensive to replace. The first set I bought was too short unless the ramp tie-down was directly under the wing tie-down rings so I had to get a longer pair for the wings. I think I ended up with 10' straps and they've fit everywhere I've gone so far.
     
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  10. Matthew K

    Matthew K Line Up and Wait

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    Interesting , the one my flight school uses iss just an open s hook like pictured, they haven't had any problems, but we're also in a fairly calm area for weather.
     
  11. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I've seen the two opposing hook ones and I've seen ones that have a spring catch and carabiner style rings.
    When we had chains with S-hooks at BJC you didn't just hook the S hook on the tiedown ring. It was used to secure a link pulled through the eye.
     
  12. Ronnie Godfrey

    Ronnie Godfrey Pre-Flight

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    We use the slip-type tie downs as pictured above on our plane and they work great. I wouldn't use the ratchet straps as it's too easy to over-tighten
     
  13. CC268

    CC268 En-Route

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    The other thing is that usually the slip type tie downs are rated for ~1200lbs. Is that enough?
     
  14. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Which hurricane were you planning for?
     
  15. CC268

    CC268 En-Route

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    Only reason I say that is there were guys over on Vans AF that we’re like, “ you need at least 7,000 lb industrial rope sonny boy”
     
  16. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Well you know those RV guys, they can pull 6 Gs just sitting on the ramp...
     
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  17. CC268

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    I lol’d at that
     
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  18. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I'm dead serious.
     
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  19. Tom-D

    Tom-D Ejection Handle Pulled

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    I like nylon rope. tied correctly.
     
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  20. CC268

    CC268 En-Route

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    I’m not smart enough to tie a good knot :( can you teach me how?
     
  21. Tom-D

    Tom-D Ejection Handle Pulled

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    yes
     
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  22. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    This is what I have, from Sporty's. The hooks have spring catches in them.

    Screen Shot 2017-12-01 at 3.05.34 PM.png
     
  23. CC268

    CC268 En-Route

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    Those are nice...just worried about slipping. One of the reviews on Sporty’s actually mentions how his slipped about 3 inches.
     
  24. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    I tie the loose ends, so they won't slip more than an inch or so.
     
  25. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    They are not the worst, not as good as proper three strand line

    BUT
    If you use them, get some bolt cutters or a grinder and take the stupid hooks off them and replace them with ether SS marine screw shackles (for the part going to the ramp) and climbing level carabiners (for the plane)
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2017
  26. ktup-flyer

    ktup-flyer Pattern Altitude

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  27. AKBill

    AKBill Cleared for Takeoff

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    That's what I've used for the last 20+ years. Never had a problem with it. 1/2" double braded rope has a tensile strength of 7400lbs.
     
  28. Tom-D

    Tom-D Ejection Handle Pulled

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    3/8th will hold every thing that the wing will.
    Whip a loop in one end, makes for double easy tying.
     
  29. Matthew K

    Matthew K Line Up and Wait

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    That's where I got the picture lol
     
  30. Shepherd

    Shepherd Pattern Altitude

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    I've used them.
    For Light Sport, and "ordinary" GA use (less than 3,000 lbs) I buy the straps designed for motorcycles.
    They are thinner, lighter, and ever so slightly stretchier.
    But they won't last as long out in the sunlight as a good old fashioned hunk of rope, so check them every month or so.
    You can buy a spool of strap and just use the same ratchets over and over for years if you take proper care of them.
     
  31. Shawn

    Shawn En-Route

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    While they CAN work as an option...know that not all ratchet straps are created equal. Check the load rating and where they are made. I use a gazillion different straps all the time for various purposes at work and have seen way too many both ratchet and cam type straps fail.

    With that, the backup set of tie downs I keep in the plane are a cam buckle, but they are rated and US made. On the home ramp it was chains.
     
  32. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Home Depot,they come in several strengths,work fine for me when tied down outside.
     
  33. NoHeat

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  34. JustinD

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    Count me for one who uses ratchet straps

    I’m hangared at my home base, but I keep them in the plane just Incase. Everywhere I go generally has ropes so I’ll just tie it down. I’ve used the ratchet straps at Sun N Fun every year I’ve gone and it’s been great so far
     
  35. GMascelli

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    I have a set of ratchet straps and use them when away from home and our hangar, if no ropes are supplied at destination.
     
  36. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I had the kind with the sliding slack adjusters, but those were the ones that failed me.

    Now I just have the ropes that come with the portable tiedowns (either the CRAW or the Stormforce ones, I have a set of each). I also throw a length of dock line (I have a boat as well in) just in case. The Navion tie down rings are way inboard compared to a lot of planes and even if they have ropes, they often don't reach.

    I also have three lengths of dock line with carabiners on the end. These hook into the the slots on the ramp in front of my hangar in case I have guests (or want to park my plane outside for some reason). You still have to tie a knot on the airplane end.
     
  37. Rykymus

    Rykymus Line Up and Wait

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    I just started keeping my plane outside (TKI) for the first time since I've had her. I'm using both the chains that are there, and the non-ratcheting cinch-tight straps from HD. Probably overkill, but...
     
  38. nauga

    nauga Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    I wonder what a tiedown ring and mount would look like with even half that load on it, not to mention the wing root.

    Nauga,
    and his finite elements
     
  39. CC268

    CC268 En-Route

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    Could you please do an FEA analysis on ANSYS or NX? Make sure you have your mesh and boundary conditions set correctly. Me, personally...I like to use ratchet straps and really get them tight so that the wings no longer have any dihedral and look like they have anhedral. That way I really know the plane is safe.
     
  40. nauga

    nauga Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    It certainly isn't going to go anywhere.

    Nauga,
    who gives 'em enough rope