1. Welcome to Tacoma World!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all Tacoma discussion topics
    • Communicate privately with other Tacoma owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

Recovery Straps - Proper Usage

Discussion in 'Off-Roading & Trails' started by Agent475, Dec 18, 2008.

  1. Dec 18, 2008 at 1:58 PM
    #1
    Agent475

    Agent475 [OP] "Mark It Zero"

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Member:
    #8829
    Messages:
    2,882
    Gender:
    Male
    Waldorf, MD
    Vehicle:
    2006 Red TRD Sport
    Hood Struts, 3" Tuff Country Lift, Shortie Antenna, WeatherTechs, Tinted front windows, custom TRD seat covers, custom pedals, debadged, custom USMC badging, quasi-functional hoodscoop (i.e. I cut it open), black front Yota emblem, Tailgate Theft-Prevention mod, Horn Relocation mod, Old Man Emu Carrier Bearing Drop, Brighter Backup Lights Mod, Smittybilt Reciever Hitch Tow Point, currently working on Satoshi Grill Mod
    I am finding a lot of great articles today that should be part of our forums here... And here is yet another on the difference between tow straps and recovery straps... and how to use them effectively.

    --------------

    Recovery Straps - Proper Usage

    How recovery straps work and how to use them properly
    By Robert B. of Gator4x4 Club ​


    The right recovery straps and how to use them can make the difference if you can pull your vehicle out safely or if you have to wait on a tow truck. A high quality strap without hooks attached to it is the strap you want to use for getting a vehicle unstuck. ​


    This is NOT a recovery strap:
    [​IMG]



    The above is called a "tow" strap. The main reason not to use this for recovery is simple. If the recovery strap or your recovery hardware breaks, it's not safe to have a metal hook flying off at speeds in excess of 100 mph. ​

    Many people have been killed and seriously injured by using these straps incorrectly. These straps will not stretch because they are made for towing, not recovery. ​


    Let me first clarify what we are talking about. ​


    Here is a recovery strap:
    [​IMG]







    How a Recovery Strap Works
    The strap works like this. Say for example you are pulling out your friend, so you attach your recovery strap to the back of your vehicle and then to the front of his. As you drive away from him the recovery strap stretches just like a rubber band. The strap wants to go back to its normal size, so it has no other choice than to transfer the energy to the stuck vehicle, pulling it out. ​

    Recovery straps are flat with sewn loops and no hooks. They are nylon, not polypropylene or Dacron or chain. Because the straps are made of Nylon, they stretch. They are safer than chains, easier to use, and not nearly as heavy. ​

    Specifications
    I've seen recovery straps come in lengths of 20 to 40 feet and widths from 2 to 6 inches. A general rule of thumb, each inch of width will allow you to pull out about 10,000 lbs. So if I have a 3 inch wide strap, it would be rated to tug up to 30,000 lbs. Many will then ask, why not go all the way up to a 6" wide recovery strap? The problem is that the strap becomes less elastic the wider it gets, which means it will not work properly. Typically a 2" or 3" wide recovery strap will suit all of your needs. ​



    Tips for Recovery Strap Use
    • Before ever using the strap, make sure it is in good condition ( no cuts, frays, or broken stitching.)
    • Make sure the hardware being used is free of defects and rust. This includes your tow hooks or front hitch and the hardware on the other vehicle. If possible, the recovering vehicle should place the recovery strap to its rear end, which would be the safest place if the strap happens to break.
    • You may be able to wrap the strap around a hitch, but I would not put it IN the hitch. I have seen a few people who have bent the pin, which then had to be cut out. Getting a tow hook or D-Ring adaptor to go into the hitch is a better idea. Here is an example of a D-Ring adaptor and how a recovery strap should be hooked up to one:

    [​IMG]





    • Some older cars actually have tow hooks, but if not you must use your own judgment. Never attach a recovery strap to a vehicles bumpers, axles, suspension, steering rods, or a trailer hitch ball. The attach points must be to a secure place on the vehicles frame. Do not place the recovery strap on another vehicle in a way that it may be cut.​
    • Never, ever, attach a recovery strap to another vehicle with a knot. You should pass one end of the strap through the loop at the other end of the strap to secure it on.​
    • Incase the strap may break, lay a tarp or some jackets on top of the recovery strap. When the strap breaks (lets hope for the best, but prepare for the worst), the jackets or tarp will slow the recovery strap down before it hits someone.​
    • To help protect the strap from tears, make sure all logs and large rocks are removed from the recovery path. Everyone should stand clear of the recovery strap when it is in use.​
    • When pulling the vehicle out, drive very slowly. Sudden tugs may lead to damage to either of the vehicles or the strap.​
    • Once the vehicle is safely removed, inspect your recovery strap and hardware and hit the road!​



    To protect your strap, store it out of sunlight and away from heat and keep it clean. Dirt, mud and debris embedded in a tow strap actually damages the fibers over time and can decrease its strength. After a muddy day of wheeling and recovery, always clean your straps by hosing them off and spray horizontally across the strap as not to push the debris into the strap fibers. Happy Recovering!
     
  2. Dec 18, 2008 at 2:06 PM
    #2
    Brunes

    Brunes abides. Thor

    Joined:
    May 31, 2008
    Member:
    #7011
    Messages:
    17,803
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rotorhead
    Big Easy, USA
    Vehicle:
    08 Red/Graphite and Satin Black
    Inside: Tint, Wet Okole 1/2 Piped Red/Black Covers, Black Weathertech Digital Fit Mats, URD Short Throw w/ TWM Weighted Knob, USA Spec iPod adapter. Outside: 4300K Retro w/ Angel Eyes and Red Shrouds, 5000K Blazer Fog Light Retrofit, Debadge, Bed Locking Handle, Satin Black Rims Performance: TRD/Steigmeier Blower w/ 2.7 Pulley. 668 Injectors and 320 LPH AEM Fuel pump. URD UCON and 7th Injector. DTLT Headers, URD Y-Pipe, Wicked Flow Muffler. Suspension: Both: OME Shocks Front: 886X's and TC UCAs Rear: Dakars Armor: Relentless Front Bumper Relentless High Clearance Rear w/ Tire/Rotopax Swing Out Relentless Front, Mid, and TCase skids BAMF Diff Skid Recovery and Spares: Fullsize Spare Tire 2x2 gal Rotopax 1x1 gal Rotopax 1x1 gal Water Rotopax Warn 9.5XP-S Winch Hi-Lift Extreme 60" Ironman Off-Road Recovery Kit Upcoming: ATO Gas Tank Skid and Sliders w/ kickout. ATO Shackle Flip Kit. Down the line: Front/Rear ARB Lockers w/ OBA. 4.56 Gears
    Nice Post Bulldog- I was actaully going to be shopping for some recovery gear before a wheeling trip next month...and this played right into what I was thinking about.

    Rep for you good sir!!
     
  3. Dec 18, 2008 at 2:12 PM
    #3
    petersharp

    petersharp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2007
    Member:
    #3566
    Messages:
    929
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Do you need to ask?! It's up there ^
    Louisville, CO
    Vehicle:
    Ex DC LB Sport owner.
    I'm suprised that he went in to so much detail yet neglected to say that recovery straps should not be used for towing.
     
  4. Dec 18, 2008 at 2:33 PM
    #4
    sonjay

    sonjay Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Member:
    #9834
    Messages:
    701
    Gender:
    Male
    Good info there! Also don't use a chain for recovery.
     
  5. Dec 19, 2008 at 3:38 AM
    #5
    RedTaco2134

    RedTaco2134 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Member:
    #7324
    Messages:
    751
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Scott
    Portland, Or
    Vehicle:
    08 Long Bed TRD Sport
    285/70/17 Goodyear BFG KM2's, Revtek 3" lift. TSB rear and Blistein 5100's http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3097063
    Good information! Also always weigh down the winch line, when recovering yourself and others.

    As for the "Don't use a Chain", not sure about that. Never seen a chain snap, even when being puller by a half submerged yota, against a 04' Cummins. Most chains i use are logging chains and are meant to be tugged, and strained. people using the chain should have enough common sense to know what a proper/ideal chain for recovery would be. Although I know some people cant wrap their heads around that, and end up using a thin "dog-chain" and hurting themselves..I just think that most people, may use a chain for recovery, instead of "straps".
     
  6. Dec 19, 2008 at 7:54 AM
    #6
    311offroad

    311offroad Stock Taco For Now

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2008
    Member:
    #9161
    Messages:
    1,304
    Gender:
    Male
    Milledgeville, GA
    Vehicle:
    2005 TRD OffRoad SR5 4x4 Short Bed Debadged
    20% tint, Debadged, Pioneer AVIC-Z110BT, Infinity component door speakers, MagLite mod
    Good post... I was lookin at recovery straps in Lowes the other day.. glad you posted this so I have a little more knowledge before spending my monies :) +rep
     
  7. Dec 19, 2008 at 8:14 AM
    #7
    taco084gb

    taco084gb No matter where you go there you are.

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Member:
    #11225
    Messages:
    1,360
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Galen
    NorCal
    These are good points here. I have used numerous style and grades of chain in the logging industry (worked as a millright) and no chain is guaranteed not to fail. I have broke all grades of chain. Most people dont know when a chain is bad or has a defective link. Or how much a chain has stretched to where it is no longer safe. Also chain if it doesnt brake will most likely brake something else Or someone else. Chain was designed for Binding and Lifting ONLY.
     
  8. Dec 19, 2008 at 8:20 AM
    #8
    taco084gb

    taco084gb No matter where you go there you are.

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    Member:
    #11225
    Messages:
    1,360
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Galen
    NorCal
    Besides lowes you can have recovery straps made up of your choice at a Rigging company that makes up chain and straps. These people are very Knowledgeable of what you will need and what type of strap and chain you will need. If looking in the phone book it would be under rigging supplies or heavy equipment hauling. Like what semis use to tie there loads down with. All of this equipment is certfied and will let u know what you can tow or lift weight wise. They also usually have Snatch blocks, D rings, And shackles.
     
  9. Dec 19, 2008 at 9:00 AM
    #9
    sonjay

    sonjay Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Member:
    #9834
    Messages:
    701
    Gender:
    Male
    Indeed chains have no give, no stretch, wire rope is alright for recovery, thats what we use on our rigs. 1" steel cable and I've seen them snap. Not only are chains dangerous they weigh too much to be packing around in your truck all the time.
     
  10. Dec 20, 2008 at 1:10 AM
    #10
    RedTaco2134

    RedTaco2134 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Member:
    #7324
    Messages:
    751
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Scott
    Portland, Or
    Vehicle:
    08 Long Bed TRD Sport
    285/70/17 Goodyear BFG KM2's, Revtek 3" lift. TSB rear and Blistein 5100's http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3097063
    But isn't weighing down your "recovery line" necessary all the time? Maybe you wouldn't have a "Flying chain incident" if you used common sense in the first place. Even the weight of a "Jacket" would force that thing to the ground. That is why people do it. This is why people should know these things beforehand, but everyone knows everything, so it is unfortunate it happens.

    I have a Strap as well, from Masterpull.com, 3.4" x 30' 35k. Called the SuperYanker, supposedly one of the best. I also have a winch line anchor, use it on both the strap, chain, winchline, etc.. never had a chain fly through my window. I Also always put the hood up, so the chain will hit the underside.
     
  11. Dec 20, 2008 at 1:26 AM
    #11
    borderbrat

    borderbrat Watching Chris4x4 o.O

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    Member:
    #3480
    Messages:
    2,504
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Jeremy
    Victoria BC, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2008, Black sand pearl, SR5, 4X4
    PIAA fogs, led "puddle" lights, bed lights, in cab 115V, Toyota Devil emblem, Randy Ellis light bar with Hella Black Magics, OME 885 and Dakar leaf springs OME shock all round, 2.5 Gal OBA system with air horns, iPod adapter, scangauge on blend mount, magnaflow catback, bike fork mounts, tinted 2009 tails.
    OT but dude your sig picture tripped me out I didn't know what was happening for a second till i sat and watched it.
     
  12. Dec 20, 2008 at 1:28 AM
    #12
    Beefed Taco

    Beefed Taco Taco Vending Machine Vendor

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2008
    Member:
    #11706
    Messages:
    1,307
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Brian
    My Metal Shop
    Vehicle:
    99 Taco
    streetacos.com parts!
    I always carry 2 straps now, I learned that the hard way. :D
     
  13. Dec 20, 2008 at 12:26 PM
    #13
    pittim

    pittim Play stupid games, win stupid prizes

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Member:
    #6939
    Messages:
    10,848
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tim
    IN, PA
    Vehicle:
    Dented and rusty
    Pink slider.
    He has active camo on his truck.


    Whenever using a recovery strap, where do the ends go? Does one end go on the recovery vehicle and the other on the vehicle being recovered, or do you make a full loop, both ends going to the recovery vehicle and then the vehicle being recovered has the recovery strap looped around something?
     
  14. Dec 20, 2008 at 1:09 PM
    #14
    sonjay

    sonjay Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Member:
    #9834
    Messages:
    701
    Gender:
    Male
    The problem with a chain is that it is designed not to stretch, if you get enough force to break that chain your jacket laying on it won't help you at all. Like I said earlier I've seen 1" steel cable snap, not fun at all.

    pittim, I guess you could loop it if you needed a short pull. It would be better to pull from the full length of the strap tho.
     
  15. Dec 20, 2008 at 1:42 PM
    #15
    pittim

    pittim Play stupid games, win stupid prizes

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Member:
    #6939
    Messages:
    10,848
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tim
    IN, PA
    Vehicle:
    Dented and rusty
    Pink slider.
    Yeah, I just thought that like a 30' strap was overkill, so I assumed you loop it around. The more I think about it though, pulling the full length would be better since the loops are reinforced.
     
  16. Dec 20, 2008 at 3:33 PM
    #16
    RedTaco2134

    RedTaco2134 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Member:
    #7324
    Messages:
    751
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Scott
    Portland, Or
    Vehicle:
    08 Long Bed TRD Sport
    285/70/17 Goodyear BFG KM2's, Revtek 3" lift. TSB rear and Blistein 5100's http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3097063

    No, I totally agree, chains, cables, are not meant for "Tugging", but you will be okay if it is weighed down. its like 101 for wincing, etc... Always weigh down your recovery line.

    FYI All this is from USPATENT So, a jacket won't do what now...?? Told you so. Basic winching, recovery 101.

    http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/7059589/description.html:D

    "It is also known to throw an item such as a jacket, a blanket or [COLOR=#F26522 ! important][COLOR=#F26522 ! important]floor [COLOR=#F26522 ! important]mats[/color][/color][/color] over the line in use so that in the event the line releases and whips, the item aids to reduce line whipping through a parachute action. For example, Warn Industriesrecommends using a heavy quilted mover's blanket located midway between the winch and the anchor point to absorb the energy. should the line break ("The Basic Guide to Winching Techniques," 2001, www.warn.com)."
     
  17. Jan 12, 2009 at 9:31 AM
    #17
    bcmedic

    bcmedic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2008
    Member:
    #8983
    Messages:
    135
    anyone know what the guys in top gear were using in the "polar express" episode?? they had some crazy bungee tow rope
     
  18. Jan 12, 2009 at 9:39 AM
    #18
    pittim

    pittim Play stupid games, win stupid prizes

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Member:
    #6939
    Messages:
    10,848
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tim
    IN, PA
    Vehicle:
    Dented and rusty
    Pink slider.
  19. Jan 12, 2009 at 10:18 AM
    #19
    sonjay

    sonjay Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Member:
    #9834
    Messages:
    701
    Gender:
    Male
    That bungee rope thing worked really good. Crazy Icelanders, always coming up with something new. Makes sense, you would never get enough traction to straight pull someone out of that situation. RedTaco, I totally agree putting a jacket or some other weight on a winch line is good, if you want use a chain and put something on it. I don't think that is a good idea, a chain is a totally different beast from a wire rope/cable.
     
  20. Jan 12, 2009 at 11:45 AM
    #20
    Janster

    Janster Old & Forgetful

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2007
    Member:
    #1138
    Messages:
    13,617
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jandy
    Lancaster, PA
    Vehicle:
    2007 4.0L 4x4 TRD Sport Access Cab A
    Advantage Torza top (tri-fold), Husky floor mats, RuffTuff seat covers, C2C hood struts, Homelink mirror, USA Spec PA15-Toy (120gig Classic & 8gig nano), Garmin Nuvi 660, Protecta Bed mat, Pop-n-lock, TSB Springs, Scangauge II, Heated drivers seat, Fumoto drain valve, Aries pushbar, PIAA 540 fog lights, Hood scoop grahics, Flowmaster 50 series dual catback exhaust, RainX Latitude windshield wipers, Husky rear floor liner (ontop of folded down seats). Console Vault.
    Winch cable (aka wire rope) should be weighted down.

    Synthetic rope does not need to be weighted.
     
To Top