Sailing Safety Harness ... Don't Ever Let Go!

This video will give you life-critical info about the sailing safety harness, emphasizing the importance of Don’t Ever Let Go of a sailboat should you fall victim to man overboard drill. Paul Exner also provides a judicious review about the “sailing safety tether”, “PFD”, and serves up his philosophy about safely “sailing small boats offshore”. Sailing safety is important to Paul Exner … he’s a published author on practicing realistic man overboard drills by improving-the-odds-of-recovery in Ocean Navigator: http://www.oceannavigator.com/March-April-2013/Improving-the-odds-of-recovery/ Paul Exner relates his knowledge of the sailing safety harness via hands-on demonstration and stories from his experience with the man overboard drill. Paul is a proponent of the features built into the Spinlock Deckvest 5D PFD giving his belief about which design gives a sailor the best sailing safety methods to guard against a man overboard drill sailing. If you're looking for more videos about sailing tips like this one, make sure to subscribe to Paul Exner's YouTube channel right here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCp68zLQoyShhg5zgi5iQuPA?view_as=subscriber

Sailing Safety Harness ... Don't Ever Let Go! sentiment_very_dissatisfied 0

Sailing 5 years ago 1,161 views

This video will give you life-critical info about the sailing safety harness, emphasizing the importance of Don’t Ever Let Go of a sailboat should you fall victim to man overboard drill. Paul Exner also provides a judicious review about the “sailing safety tether”, “PFD”, and serves up his philosophy about safely “sailing small boats offshore”. Sailing safety is important to Paul Exner … he’s a published author on practicing realistic man overboard drills by improving-the-odds-of-recovery in Ocean Navigator: http://www.oceannavigator.com/March-April-2013/Improving-the-odds-of-recovery/ Paul Exner relates his knowledge of the sailing safety harness via hands-on demonstration and stories from his experience with the man overboard drill. Paul is a proponent of the features built into the Spinlock Deckvest 5D PFD giving his belief about which design gives a sailor the best sailing safety methods to guard against a man overboard drill sailing. If you're looking for more videos about sailing tips like this one, make sure to subscribe to Paul Exner's YouTube channel right here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCp68zLQoyShhg5zgi5iQuPA?view_as=subscriber

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Most popular comments
for Sailing Safety Harness ... Don't Ever Let Go!

Cubeist Games
Cubeist Games - 5 years ago
During another student’s check-out on a keelboat, we did a man overboard drill - at night. We did recover the item, but it took a much longer period of time than expected. It was eye opening.
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
+Cubeist Games ... a recovery is still a recovery ... good work! Also, nice to hear from a Hoofer!
Cubeist Games
Cubeist Games - 5 years ago
No lights at all (you may have guessed this was Hoofers. ;)). A couple of us managed to get good enough vectors to it that while doing increasing large loops someone finally spotted it. More luck, really, than anything.
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks for the comment, Cubeist Games! Did you guys use high-intensity lights to locate the item? Do you remember which MOB recovery methods you guys liked the best for use in your night-recovery practice? Kind regards ... sail on! Paul
Cubeist Games
Cubeist Games - 5 years ago
In a sailing lesson once an instructor fell off our boat (an Interlake), and hit his head on the (smooth, no toe rail) deck - fortunately not knocked out. The student at the helm was inept and couldn’t complete a man overboard drill. The instructor, who knew me from Tech dinghy racing (thus knowing I could sail to a “mark”), called from the water for me to take over, and I was able to take over and get back to the instructor. As I recall the instructor got a “funky monkey” award for that one.
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks again, Cubeist Games ... good work recovering the MOB; that is no small feat! It's nice to be recognized for your talents during a life-critical event. The Funky Monkey was earned by the instructor, I'm sure! For anyone reading this comment ... the FM award is given weekly to an Instructor of the Hoofer Sailing Club during the summer sailing season for crazy or heroic actions in the line-of-duty.
Cubeist Games
Cubeist Games - 5 years ago
Paul, if you were on an inland lake a mile from shore, howizzit that the boat disappeared over the horizon? And to do that in 5 minutes with a horizon, of, say, 14 miles, it must have been doing 12*14 (14 in 1/12 of an hour) knots/mph. Perhaps a little hyperbole?
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks ... and good question! I never thought about it that way, but the boat went out of sight within 5 minutes. I think with my head so close to the water, and behind some choppy water, the horizon view was coming and going! A little hyperbole goes a long way too!
Superform
Superform - 5 years ago
good job, subbed, what sort of boat is that?
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks, Superform! My boat is SV Solstice, a custom boat I built from a bare hull. The hull is a Cape George Cutter 31, but the deck, cabin house, other structures, rig, mechanicals, etc. were all built custom or specified by me from my bare hands. Solstice is the only CG31 with that exact deck configuration ... she is a one of a kind.
lifelovers
lifelovers - 5 years ago
Where's your lifejacket?
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks for your comment lifelovers ... I don my Spinlock Deckvest 5D a few minutes into the video. I demonstrate how to put it on. Kind regards & sail on ...
Paula Bersie
Paula Bersie - 5 years ago
I love this Paul! Great Job! Also, the wood looks great! You told me that you used Penofin, correct? Which one? Was it the Marine Wood Oil Finish? Was it easy to apply?
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Hi Paula! Thanks for the kind words about the video and wood aboard Solstice. We recently switched to Penofin TSF Architectural Grade, Satin finish in search of a wood-care system that would keep wood looking its best while minimizing the labor required to do so. I've tried many different wood finishing products: varnish, oil, Cetol, epoxy/varnish, Awlgrip clear and all of them were very labor intensive and yielded marginal results. I finally settled on Penofin TSF Hardwood (not their original Marine Grade), but I went with their Architectural Grade for its advancements in chemistry: "Supreme level UV resistance through the use of a multi-phase UV protection package composed of high grade trans-oxide pigments, Nano-technology UV blockers and UV photo-light stabilizers. This durable yet flexible alkyd-urethane hybrid system delivers 2 year protection on decks and 4 year protection on fences and siding." We sanded our teak back to bare wood (scraped, 80, 150, 220) and dusted the wood "dry;" then applied two coats. They went on easy, and just like any other coating, the technique used to brush it on with a foam brush was unlike any other technique I've used; but, with any painting experience a user might have, we learn to adapt to the new material quickly. The jury is still out on Penofin, but I've been impressed so far, and I'm hoping that both longevity and application of a maintenance coat will minimize the labor spent keeping the wood looking great! Kind regards, and sail on ... Paul
Fire Eye Fitness
Fire Eye Fitness - 5 years ago
Great video Paul!
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
THANKS!
Seth Sill
Seth Sill - 5 years ago
Great video! Thank you
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thank you, Seth!
Anje Pisciotta
Anje Pisciotta - 5 years ago
Wow, such an abundance of sailing safety advise in just 16’! Some things aside from the PFD and tethers that stood out for me sailing on different boats and trying to watch out for my own and other crew members’ safety were; good handholds (granny bars, hoops), the height of the lifelines, and wide side decks. Paul, thanks for sharing your expertise in this (for you) new challenging way! Subscribed, and looking forward to more great advise or learning from your experience and knowledge through this channel.
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks for tuning in, Anje! Really appreciate that you related to the video, and that your awareness of crew and self is keen; I think it's that sort of applied common sense that keeps the boat safe overall. Until next time ... Sail on!

10. comment for Sailing Safety Harness ... Don't Ever Let Go!

Marc Dacey
Marc Dacey - 5 years ago
11:20 That's a good point about consistency in layout. When on watch, I put any objects on my vest or nearby in the same places or the same orientation for just this reason. 13:18: That's an interesting staysail track setup. I wonder how high you can point to weather with just the staysail up? Well done!
JaxSailboat
JaxSailboat - 5 years ago
This is excellent! So much wisdom and discernment here from a real captain, leader, teacher, and example.
59 North Sailing
59 North Sailing - 5 years ago
Great work Paul, you’re the perfect person to take this on. A couple comments: 1). The second tether you showed with the toothed hook - they’re made from sheet steel and we’re shown to be prone to failure in one of the Clipper Race accidents recently. It got hooked on a cleat and bent sideways. Don’t use them. 2). The Spinlock is a great, and usually standard, choice, but not the only one. Key is to look for the specific ISO standard that stipulates crotch straps, spray hood, light, whistle, 150NM buoyancy among other items. Crewsaver makes one available in the USA I like. But it’s that ISO standard that is crucial when choosing an offshore PFD. 3). Finally, the KONG double tether is my preferred choice for the same reasons you mention. I just like having 2. We tell ISBJÖRN crew that if you go over, you’re dead. If we get you back, you’re lucky. And the safety equipment is there to remind you how vulnerable you are on deck - YOU gotta keep yourself onboard with balance, agility & smart decision making. Great video.
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
+Paula Bersie ... HEAVY is not good ... the lighter the better w.r.t. a harness; that's one of the reasons I really prefer the Spinlock 5D (that and it's ergonomic design).
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
+Paula Bersie ... awesome commentary my friend! You really know these products and the trade-offs at hand. I really appreciate you taking time to report this awesome information. Kind regards, and sail on ...
Paula Bersie
Paula Bersie - 5 years ago
Oh! One more thing. Yes, the Crewsaver ErgoFit's are great lifevests, but man are they ever HEAVY!
Paula Bersie
Paula Bersie - 5 years ago
Hi Paul and Andy, just an FYI, the Spinlock Deckvest 5D is no longer available in a hydrostatic inflator. It’s being replaced by the Spinlock Vito, which will start to ship next month. Two versions, one with a standard tether point, or one with a quick release tether point. The regular will be able to be retrofitted as well. The Deckvest 5D is still available with the Pro-Sensor (UML type ), which I'm starting to lean towards again. I'm know it's anecdotal, but... after a few incidents where the Hydrostatic didn't inflate on a couple people's vests at the Safety At Sea Seminar that I did in March, rumors of it happening to other people and the fact that I lost a friend this summer when his lifejacket didn't go off during the Mac, I'm starting to be wary of the Hydrostatic and more willing to inspect and change my inflator more often. I agree with Andy on the tether, but I haven't seen a KONG. My fav is the Wichard Proline'R - Releasable 3-point Tether, because as much as you should NOT LET GO! If you were to let go for some reason and were dragging face forward at 6 knots, and couldn't get a hold of a lifeline or someone get a hold of you... I'd rather have a quick release and survive for a few more minutes than have to fumble around to find my knife.
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks for the awesome comments! The 3 points are excellent, and I'm glad to know that the toothed hook tether (the one that I don't like) was prone to failure, although I certainly hope no crew had to suffer injury or loss of life to prove the tether's fault ... that device just didn't seem up to par; we sensed it was lousy by holding it in our hands. 2) Thanks for the shoutout for Crewsaver, and bringing-up the pertinent point that it's ISO standards that drive design ... I haven't tried all the harnesses or tethers available, would be fun to sail with each one for a month to really learn how to wear it. I just really like Spinlock 5D mostly because it's the only one I've worn that doesn't fatigue me because it's ergonomic design fits my physique ... and yes, the crotch straps on the 5D are SO easy to use, manipulate, and put away on the harness itself. I should definitely make a video about crotch straps and how to use them. 3) I'm looking forward to checking out your KONG double tether during our Caribbean 600 Ocean Race in February! Having 2 is great; and, I LOVE your view that "safety equipment is there to remind [us]." Thanks for your tremendous support in making this video series (they are a lot of work, and I have a lot to learn as a Producer). Sail on, my friend!
Elizabeth Crowley
Elizabeth Crowley - 5 years ago
Great video..lots of interesting points about safety..where were you sailing when you shot the video?
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thanks! We're sailing along the Kona Coast of Hawaii (west side of Big Island). Really happy you took away some valuable information from our video. #hawaii #hawaiisailing
Kevin Gray
Kevin Gray - 5 years ago
I enjoyed the video, especially that you were underway while you were teaching. I’m interested to see the next topic. Quick question, I see the boat is in the groove. Did you have the windvane engaged or was it nicely balanced?
Pierre Cederholm
Pierre Cederholm - 5 years ago
Nice video with some really good points. And Solstice is a very fine vessel indeed! I just have to ask you why your crew on the catamaran just smiled at you and continued sailing away from you when you fell overboard? I mean.. thats a life threatening situation. :/
Pierre Cederholm
Pierre Cederholm - 5 years ago
+Paul Exner All right! Thank you for taking the time to give that really good and detailed answer. Fair winds!
Paul Exner
Paul Exner - 5 years ago
Thank you for your comment and cool question Pierre! My crew (who smiled and sailed away) thought he was going to recover me using a method that required precision sailing. I tell this story because it brings awareness to the fact that a "stopped boat" near the overboard victim can be one of the best first steps, especially from the victim's perspective if he watches a boat sail away and out of sight as the remaining crew make several failed recovery attempts because their sailing skill isn't good enough. This matter was reviewed carefully with my crew after the fact, and I stressed the importance of taking time to evaluate a man overboard situation carefully to assess whether the victim is close enough to swim and recover themselves. This truly is a complicated and serious matter. It inspired me to publish and article in Ocean Navigator Magazine: http://www.oceannavigator.com/March-April-2013/Improving-the-odds-of-recovery/ ... fair winds, and thanks again for taking time to comment! Paul Exner

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