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#8403 - 03/26/06 02:41 PM Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
Hal Offline
Moderator

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 9945
Loc: Blue Creek, Ohio, USA
Recently on here we had a thread called "Can you build me a better cable restraint?" , started by Archer01. The lament was that he had lost 3 out of 5 coyotes he caught in Pennsylvania "Cable Restraints". That's unacceptable by any standard, so I asked him if he could send me a few samples of the snares he was using. He did, and subsequently I've made some discoveries that may explain the high failure rate.

(Please note: All the testing described below was done using a static pull with the snares cinched around a 2.4" outside diameter pipe. I sincerely hope that someday this can be adopted as a standard by all BAD manufacturers and we can all get on the same page with this.)

For starters, different locks can exhibit different break away strengths even with the same BAD (Break Away Device). Usually the difference is not significant. The goal here, in most instances, is to keep the trapper legal. In other words, even though there is a difference in locks, as long as the strongest combination does not exceed the state limit, the trapper should be okay.

Most of you know, I prefer a lighter break-away than most states mandate. I make and sell a 280# break away s-hook. The design of this is to release virtually all leg snared deer, and retain most coyotes. Devices with higher ratings, have the potential to hold more deer. Some coyotes may defeat the 280# system, but not many. With that said, I wouldn't want to go too much below a 280# system with a coyote snare. You'll start losing too many coyotes.

I had to be judicious about testing the few snares Archer sent me, because I didn't have many samples. But? on the first two tests, the snares broke out a 240 pounds.

Now, the first thing that ran through my mind was someone was selling "weak" BADs. Or, maybe these BADs weren't even tested anywhere. Remember as long as the BAD is below state maximum, the trapper is legal. But when it gets too low, the trapper starts losing too many coyotes -- legal or not.

Maybe I have been remiss, but I never tested my BAD on a reverse bend washer lock. I don't want to digress too badly here, but this lock has been one of the most obscure locks in the business. How it got randomly selected, and tested, and adopted as the "holy grail" of relaxing locks remains a mystery. (I wish someone could tell me why the 90? washer lock, which is probably the most common lock in use toda, was not selected as the lock to be tested.)

At any rate, I got some of my 280# s-hooks, installed them in the typical manner on these locks, and tested. Guess what, they broke at 240 pounds. There is something about that lock that gives it a higher leverage advantage to defeat the BAD. (The way the holes lie in parallel planes I suspect has something to do with it.)

I'm not giving away any trade secrets here but there are three main factors in determining the release point of an s-hook style bad, the hardness of the wire, the diameter of the wire, and the radius of the bend in the s-hook.

I found that by reducing the radius of the bend, I could make my s-hook function in the prescribed range (280 - 300 pounds) on this 180? lock. It's really pretty simple to do, once you figure it out. I took a pair of vice grips with smooth tipped jaws, and with the pliers locked, used the adjusting screw to pinch them down on various sized drill bits. Then, I would install the s-hook on the lock, and pinch it closed with the vice grips, thusly adjusted.





The setting it takes, to make the system fail at just under 300 pounds, is 11/32". That smashes the s-hook to just a little bit smaller radius than I supply it with. Please be advised that tiny fractions here are very critical. Using the vice grips set at 21/64" gave a system in excess of 325 pounds, putting it over the maximum for several states.

I have got wind, from other sources, that a number of these "cable restraint" devices had been releasing a lot of coyotes. I'm not going to mention any names or brands here, but I have seen them advertised as including a 285# rated s-hook (or j-hook) BAD. It now seems possible, to me, that a device that ordinarily shows a 280 pound break away strength, my be failing at a considerably lower strength when used with these 180? locks. Thus the high number of escaped coyotes.

I know that I carry on a lot about the overly restrictive, and in many instances silly, snaring regulations that some states have instituted recently. But I also realize that does little to help the trappers who have to work under those restrictions.

The original thread asked: "Can you build me a better cable restraint?" I don't know about "better" but I can build you a cable restraint that will perform closer to expectation. Starting next season, I will be offering "Cable Restraint" snares that will meet legal requirements, and have been tested to be sure the break-away strength is not so low as to make them ineffective on coyotes.

I may also add a note to my 280# Break-Away S-hooks advising how to install them on 180? locks. This would be helpful to those folks trying to make their own "cable restraints" or those who just prefer this lock.

I'd be glad to entertain any of your comments or questions.

smile -- Hal
_________________________
Endeavor to persevere.

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#8404 - 03/26/06 03:57 PM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
WACKYQUACKER Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 683
Loc: CORRALES, NM
My question is of an offshoot of your posting; what would be the issue / problem with a State requiring a BAD which "could resaonably be expected to release leg snared large animals"? Since there is no standard of testing and most snares are home made this sort of wording may cause fewer problems. I can see little difference, absent a stated testing protocal to judge the functio of the device.

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#8405 - 03/26/06 06:33 PM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
Mike Marchewka Offline
Member

Registered: 01/31/02
Posts: 152
Loc: Crystal Lake,Illinois
Good info Hal!
I wonder what the BMP boys will do with BADS and snares? Or will they even touch it? Seems like a valuable PR tool..like CRs.
What are your findings/feelings on the bads ferrules ends like on the Amberg? Any feedback? Seems to me it would an easier system to apply.
Thoughts?

Something the CRs do is virtually limit/handcuff a trapper where to make a set. It severely limits the functionality of snaring.
Imagine finding a hot trail for a coyote snare only to spend 10 minutes clipping branches away to prevent entanglement. GRRRR...not smart.

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#8406 - 03/26/06 07:15 PM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
tnoll Offline
Member

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 61
Loc: central PA
Thanks Hal for looking into this and making some for sale for next year. I have suspected something was not right and noted this on my survey sent to the PGC.I also lost a coyote and stoped using CRs after that till I'M satisfied with the equiptment.I will be placing an order this fall.

Again Thanks
Tom

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#8407 - 03/26/06 08:40 PM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
Hal Offline
Moderator

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 9945
Loc: Blue Creek, Ohio, USA
Wacky:I wish you were kidding frown

Frankly, I couldn’t much get behind a regulation premised on some manifestation of “reasonable”. To me that would be akin to trying to define some type of jaw spread regulation on “reasonable”.

In the first place that leaves too much discretion in the hands of trappers, especially those of questionable ethics. And, too much discretion on the part of the C.O., who gets to write you the ticket. Eventually, this winds up at the judicial branch for an interpretation of what is reasonable, and at that stage somebody is going to want numbers. Might as well get it out of the way and save the trouble.

Also, what would you do for beginning trappers? How would you steer them towards reasonable? How about manufacturers? I can see that now. The label reads: These snares are rated New Mexico Reasonable.

”I can see little difference, absent a stated testing protocol...”

Alas, I fear you are correct. In fact we touched on this in the thread we did a year ago on Testing Break Aways. And I think Jim hit on this in the “Can you make a better cable restraint thread.” (I hope he reads this and comments too.)

I don’t advocate breaking the law, but right now everything that goes on here with the tests I’ve run and recommending what trappers should use, serves no better purpose than to keep folks within the “spirit” of the law. These regulations are “meant” to yield snares that, as Tom said: “could reasonably be expected to release leg snared large animals".

So far, I don’t know of anyone who has specifically been cited for using a BAD that is too strong. That may or may not be coincidental. However, some individual might want to pursue this and take this to court. In this case we will assume that the upper limit is stated in the regulations. If that individual is properly represented, I believe the question might be brought before the judge as to how the determination is, or might be, made that the device in question is over the limit.

I am at the point now, where I almost wish someone would do this. Bring the DNR into court and ask them “You’ve given us this number, how do we measure this?” I guarantee you there would be a lot of embarrassed bureaucrats.

I have actually argued this in another arena. The solution that was proposed in this situation was to label BADs as “manufacturer rated”. Well, lah-dee-daa, take that to court too, if you wish!! I’m sure some judge would get a chuckle out of that if there is an advocate present to point out that there is no agreed standardization among manufacturers. (For the right price, I’ll devise you a test that will make your BAD pass. I’ll bring the mountain to Mohammad.)

So back to the spirit of the law, and what trappers themselves want to achieve. I’ve told you how I’ve tested these things. And this test has been used previously in other jurisdictions to test snares. Using this type of test, a BAD that breaks at 350 pounds will hold virtually all coyotes and a few smaller deer and deer sized animals too. One that breaks at around 280 pounds will release virtually all deer, and hold most coyotes. Choices should be made accordingly.

smile -- Hal
_________________________
Endeavor to persevere.

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#8408 - 03/26/06 09:10 PM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
Hal Offline
Moderator

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 9945
Loc: Blue Creek, Ohio, USA
Mike:

I’ve never tried the ferrules, but I do know this. The swager for these things is going to cost in excess of $20.00. It’s a one time purchase so that’s not too bad. Now the ferrules themselves are going to be in excess of $2.00 per dozen.

The ferrules are a one time use deal. You crimp the ferrule onto the snare cable. The cable in a snare is good for one catch. When you replace the cable, you must apply a new ferrule.

My s-hooks are going to sell for $2.95 per dozen next season. (Reduced price.) You put the s-hook on the lock, not the cable. You can reuse lock with the s-hook attached to build a new snare. In fact you can reuse the lock/s-hook combination time and time again until something happens (as in you tangle with a large animal) and the s-hook opens up.

Like I said, I haven’t tested the swaged ferrules, and I probably won’t. I do want to see trappers provided with accurate information, and I really would like to see standardization in this testing, but I am not compelled to test other people’s devices for them.

smile -- Hal
_________________________
Endeavor to persevere.

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#8409 - 03/26/06 11:20 PM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
WACKYQUACKER Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 683
Loc: CORRALES, NM
I wish I'd made book on the answer I would recieve and I can't disagree. However, there are those out there that would prefer to fashion their own equipment all that is needed to accomplish this is a "test". I guess the best thing to do is just keep holding the deer, elk, cattle, horses and sheep until we get a standardized test or lose snaring (I am kidding here). I should note , in NM we still snare.

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#8410 - 03/26/06 11:47 PM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
WACKYQUACKER Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 683
Loc: CORRALES, NM
Disclaimer: I have never tested a BAD. I purchase (now and forever more) BADs only from the most reliable source I know.

I will offer this information as it may be of comparative value. I use only snares equiped with dispatch springs. I use many locks specifically designed and tested for a spring and release ferrule. I also use many camlocks equiped with "S" BADs and springs. A few years ago I got very cautious and configured some of my cams with "S" BADs and secured the spring with a release ferrule...a double release if you will...something would give. To date, I have never had a "S" bad release a coyote. I have had release ferrules on locks designed specifically for such devices fail on three coyotes. On Cams equiped with both the release ferrule and "S" BAD the "s" BAD has always been the point of release for large animals.

I think this all goes back to the original post on this thread; you must use BADs designed (tested) for the specific lock / snare configuration if you expect them to work as you predict.

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#8411 - 03/27/06 06:42 AM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
Mike Marchewka Offline
Member

Registered: 01/31/02
Posts: 152
Loc: Crystal Lake,Illinois
Hal and Wacky your last two posts could enlighten any snare/CR user. Hal in regards to your comments about..." not know anyone that has been cited for using BAD that has been too strong....legal..court.." Heck how would they test the BAD....AND... Who would test the BAD? I realize DWRC tested some BADS years ago...but alot has changed since then. Like discussion on how valid the testing procedure was! There are too many indiscrepencies involved! As you showed us being off by 1/32 can make a difference in several poundsof break away! This would be a lawyers delight.
Wacky I've had several BADS open up while snaring down South...all were lock attached BADS. I never had a cable end ferrule fail. Interestingly I had two 275 lb DWRC pins fail while checking the same group of snares one year...farther down this same trail I snared a huge coydog...40lb.s plus! Now I can't be sure this animal was the same as the one that came in contact with one of my snares but I would like to believe it was!! lol

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#8412 - 03/27/06 11:23 AM Re: Break-Away S-hooks and 180? Locks
jwr Offline
Member

Registered: 02/19/03
Posts: 199
Loc: ark
(Please note: All the testing described below was done using a static pull with the snares cinched around a 2.4" outside diameter pipe.

You putting this in makes me wonder, Would a larger or smaller pipe make a difference? I know nothing about physics.
I hope arkansas never trys bads, We are famous for 40 lds coyotes and 50 lbs deer.

Arkansas reg's specify "braided cable". Now try to find braided cable, dang near impossible.

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