Harp closure or soft shackle – the advantages and disadvantages in recovery

Now what should you choose for towing/unloading your vehicle?

Do you choose a soft shackle made of rope or a harp shackle made of steel?

We have both and they both have specific advantages and disadvantages.

And we list these for you, so you can choose for yourself based on what you think is important.

But we also look at where one or the other option is the best choice. For example, harp locks come standard on your tow eyes.


Most important thing to keep in mind is: does using the softshackle or the harp clasp make the whole setup safer.

Think about what might break and what the effects might be.

What you definitely want to avoid is a piece of iron being launched and flying through a windshield or rear window due to the force on the rope.

Therefore, it is important to:

  • Know the breaking strength of each component
  • Know the condition of your equipment well and check and replace it regularly

This allows you to make the right, safe choice of material to use in the recovery situation.


Advantages and disadvantages Softshackles

  • Light weight
  • Floats, so won’t easily get lost in a recovery with lots of water or mud
  • Wears out, so must eventually be replaced
  • Easy to use
  • Damaged relatively easily by sharp stones and the like, as well as sharp edges from your towing eyes
  • More expensive than a harp seal of comparable strength


Advantages and disadvantages of harp closures

  • With ordinary use (i.e., no heavier than allowed), practically indestructible
  • Heavy
  • Not susceptible to damage from sharp stones or edges of the trailing eyes
  • Cheap
  • If you are not careful, you may lose the pin in a recovery situation (for example, in mud or water)

Where will the harp clasp be and where will the soft shackle be and why?


1. To the trailing eyes you prefer to attach the harp clasp.

In fact, these can just hang around if you want, as they hardly wear out due to weather conditions.

Since the harp clasp is very strong, it will almost never be the breaking point.

Do pay attention to your towing eyes and make sure they are strong enough. Because otherwise those will come loose if too much force is applied.

2. To connect 2 tow cables or extend a winch cable, preferably use a softshackle


If you are connecting 2 cables or ropes, you don’t want the breaking of the rope to launch the shackle.

Then it is better to use a soft shackle, so that when a rope breaks, nothing comes flying through the air at great speed and endangers people.

Alternative to the soft shackle is to intertwine the loops of the ropes (don’t forget to put something in between them so you can more easily disassemble the ropes afterwards)


If you have any questions or something is unclear, please let us know at info@prorope.com






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