Is my snatch strap stuffed?

Submitted: Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:39
ThreadID: 137727 Views:1741 Replies:10 FollowUps:12
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Good morning Explorers of Oz,

I would like some advice, please.

The other day I had to recover a mate's Ranger and CT. We were on a very steep uphill track, rutted, loose and scrabbly under foot with the odd minor rock step. He got stuck against a small step and ran out of traction to climb over it. PX2 Ranger, rear locker engaged, Max tracks deployed, etc, but no winch.

I had the winch. I found a suitable levelish location where I figured I wouldn't be pulled downhill when winching, but it was beyond the reach of my winch rope plus extension strap. I had no option but to use my 8 tonne snatch strap as an additional extension. I know it stretched a bit while the job was being done, but I can't tell you how much.

Common sense says to replace it, and I will.

But the question is, is it stuffed? If so, is it good for any other purpose?

TIA for any advice.
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Reply By: Gramps - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:50

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:50
I'd say replace it and send the bill to your mate.

Regards
AnswerID: 623459

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:12

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:12
Thanks Gramps, that's an option but I'm not too much worried about who pays - I invited him onto the track knowing it was only me with the recovery gear so I'm happy to wear it.

I really just want to know if it's damaged beyond any practical use.

Cheers
1
FollowupID: 896661

Reply By: Malcom M - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:55

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:55
Snatch straps are not stuffed by one single use. Takes a few pulls to damage the fibres.
If there is no obvious damage to the strap (abrasion etc) then I would certainly use it a few more times yet.

AnswerID: 623460

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:23

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:23
Thanks Malcom, I'll check it and assess. I guess I really want to know if it's stretched beyond use as a snatch strap. I don't want to rip an end off my car or someone else's with a shock load applied by a "dead" snatch strap. :-(

Cheers
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FollowupID: 896666

Follow Up By: Malcom M - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:27

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:27
Definitely not stretched beyond use if you've only used it the once.
Don't toss it.
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FollowupID: 896667

Reply By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 10:17

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 10:17
.
Hi Frank,

I very much doubt that a steady pull by your winch would harm your 8 tonne snatch strap. They are rated to withstand much more when used in the designed 'inertia tug' mode. And I would expect it to "stretch a bit" in use in the winching mode.

Inspect it for any fractured fibres, but if all looks OK then I would consider it to be undamaged.
Cheers
Allan

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AnswerID: 623463

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:14

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:14
Thanks Allan. It was a long, steady, hard pull which I didn't make clear in my opening post. Would that make a difference?

Cheers
1
FollowupID: 896662

Reply By: Iza B - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 11:08

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 11:08
Consider the force applied during a snatch compared to a steady stretch on the end of a winch rope. If it did not get dirty or abraded during the winch operation, not too many grounds for replacing the strap.

Iza
AnswerID: 623467

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:14

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:14
Thanks Iza, appreciated. I'll check it for visual signs of damage. My main concern is possible concealed damage caused by a long slow stretch, which, as Ron has pointed out in his Reply, it's not made for.

Cheers
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Reply By: Ron N - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:11

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:11
Frank - How much did it stretch? Have you measured the strap now, in it's unloaded condition?

A fairly good rule of thumb is 10%. If you are using winches, or cable controlled equipment, you replace the steel wire rope when 10% of the strands show serious flattening or wear.

If you're using ratchet tie-downs, you replace the straps when the strap damage reaches 10% of the width of the strap.

If you bought a snatch strap and it's, say 9M long, in its unloaded state, when purchased - then when the strap reaches 9.9M in length, in its unloaded state, would be a good time to discard it.

Alternatively, the age of the strap needs to be taken into account, along with its storage and use levels.
I'll wager there's a lot of snatch straps out there, that are 10-15 yrs old and have only been used a few times. Many would be at the point of needing to be discarded, particularly if stored improperly.

If your snatch strap has been in the sun a lot or in wet, muddy conditions a lot, then you would certainly be well advised to discard it at around 10 yrs old.

The materials in snatch straps are not designed to last a long period of time. Ageing and UV light is a killer with manufactured synthetic products such as nylon.

The major snatch strap error you have made, is using a snatch strap as a winch rope.

Snatch straps are not designed to be used as tow ropes or winch ropes. The application of heavy, steady strain is anathema to their design and construction.

Snatch straps are designed to be used in a snatch situation, where the load on them is transient, thus allowing them to return to their original length.

If it's now stretched 10% or more in its relaxed state, then I'd have to say, discard it.

Possibly the only advantage in your favour is that your strap is rated at 8 tonnes, so it has probably not been loaded to more than about a quarter of its load capacity - thereby escaping any major stretch damage.

It's rare for loadings on snatch straps to reach 3 tonnes, even on a dead pull, or with a severe snatch.
Over that load figure, chassis damage would start to appear.

Cheers, Ron.
AnswerID: 623473

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:19

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:19
Thanks Ron. Yes, it's old, about 10 years, only used a few times, always washed and dried after use and kept in its ventilated plastic bag in the dark.

You've hit on all the things that made me ask the question. I'm just wondering if I can get away with it. I will check to see if it has a length on the label and measure against that and will follow you advice if necessary.

Cheers
1
FollowupID: 896665

Reply By: Guy G - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:29

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 13:29
Good quality snatch straps have either an overload indicator built in to the label which, if exposed, the strap should no longer be used for that purpose or overload stitching which if damaged results in the same outcome. By 1 December 2019 the Australian Standard for Vehicle Recovery Straps will be law. See: http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2010L01931[/url]
AnswerID: 623475

Reply By: Hoyks - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 15:51

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 15:51
Do the maths.
Your snatchstrap is rated at 8000kg

Ranger max gross combined mass is 6000kg.

If lifting the lot vertically with your winch all hooked up to work as a crane, you still have 2000kg to spare.

Your winch will only pull its rated capacity with 1 wrap of cable on the drum, each additional wrap is a significant reduction in pulling power, so did the winch stall or really struggle? (10000lb=4500kg)

If the strap is not visibly damaged, then I think you will be right. Hooking it onto a vehicle and driving away at 20km/h will see peak loads significantly above what you have achieved winching.
AnswerID: 623485

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 16:23

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 16:23
Thanks Hoyks.

Your numbers make sense. At a guess his combination would have been a bit below 5 tonne.

It's an 11,000 lb winch, it was on the 1st wrap and it seemed to be struggling for a bit, so, theoretically, close to 11,000lb applied, close enough to 5 tonne. Looking back, I suspect it wasn't that much. My car (BT50 close to 3 tonne) was parked on a slightly downhill slope with a loose dry surface. I reckon a 5 tonne pull would have moved my car down the hill, and it didn't.

I've washed and checked the strap. There is no visible damage so I am heartened by your reply (and others who are suggesting similar).

Cheers



1
FollowupID: 896681

Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 17:17

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 17:17
.
Thanks Hoyks, for expressing it so much better than I could.
Cheers
Allan

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FollowupID: 896685

Follow Up By: Ron N - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 17:36

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 17:36
During independent snatch strap testing by Mitsubishi, they found that a little over 3 tonnes was the maximum force they could exert on the strap.

The blokes with the website below did their own testing, and couldn't get over 2.6 tonnes in maximum strap loading.

Snatch strap loading tests

Cheers, Ron.
1
FollowupID: 896687

Follow Up By: Hoyks - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 18:24

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 18:24
Yeah, when used as the instructions state, but you see many being abused and I'm sure their peak loads are higher than that.
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FollowupID: 896691

Follow Up By: terryt - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 22:04

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 22:04
You are obviously worried about this. Spend the money and get a new one and relax.
2
FollowupID: 896702

Reply By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 22:32

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 22:32
Thank you everyone for your input.

I am reasonably satisfied that the strap is ok. It has no visual signs of damage and the logic presented here suggests there is no hidden damage. I use it infrequently so I'm going to give it a couple of mild tests and probably keep it.

Cheers

AnswerID: 623498

Reply By: Member - TonyV - Tuesday, Jan 29, 2019 at 00:16

Tuesday, Jan 29, 2019 at 00:16
Frank, to be honest, if its 10 years old, replace it anyway.
TonyV

Cairns FNQ.

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AnswerID: 623500

Reply By: HKB Electronics - Tuesday, Jan 29, 2019 at 12:49

Tuesday, Jan 29, 2019 at 12:49
I had to tow a small car for around 5 K's with a snatch strap once, a the start it was ok the snatch strap absorbing the shock as I slowly took of and the play was taken up, by the time we got to the destination it was like towing with a steel cable. I assume the weave gets tighter and tighter till all the cushioning affect is gone. The fibers may not have stretched but you might find if you use it in a snatch scenario it is a lot harsher than one that hasn't been used to winch with.
HKB Electronics

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AnswerID: 623507

Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Tuesday, Jan 29, 2019 at 13:39

Tuesday, Jan 29, 2019 at 13:39
Thanks HKB, that is exactly my concern. I'll test it and see if I can assess the feel and based on that decide on replacement.

Cheers
0
FollowupID: 896713

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