Kinetic Recovery Rope?
After watching the amazing truck recovery I posted about yesterday, I started looking over this guy's U-Toob channel. He's got hundreds of vehicle rescues, and it's pretty interesting to watch. It's also just a pretty good channel in general. I really like his attitude.
Anyway, I noticed in a lot of his rescues he uses a thing called a "kinetic recovery rope" which is basically like a giant bungee cord on steroids and it seems to work miraculously well. People out here in the boonies, myself included, get stuck all the time, especially in the fall, winter and spring. I can't even count how many times I've pulled other people out for a variety of reasons (usually mud, or going off the road in the snow). My usual extraction tool is a jerk strap, but they really live up to the "jerk" in their names sometimes. So, I've decided to get one of these kinetic recovery ropes. Anyone else ever use one?
The one I got is 1" in dia. and 30' long. Says it's rated at 30,000 lbs with a max. breaking strength of something like 80,000 lbs. Has 30% elasticity to it. If it works out I may get another 30' footer and a 20' footer for a total of 80' total. They say that's about max. length because beyond 100' the tow vehicle doesn't have enough power to accomplish anything. They're not cheap though, some of them upwards of $200+ bucks each.
I may just keep my old jerk straps as backup. Last year I pulled this kid out of the mud and bent the frame on his old beater police car (at least I think it was me). I felt bad, but he was stuck way off the road, was going way too fast, and then tore up this lady's wheat field trying to get out...so I didn't feel too bad. His dad tried to pull him out a few times when I got there, but it was pure melting ice on the road and his little F-150 wasn't going to cut it. So I went and got a real truck and came back out to get him out. They were too cheap to call a wrecker and they just would have made a bigger mess if I didn't come get him out. I know the guys, they're neighbors from down the road a piece.
It really was kind of a nasty stuck in this case. Kid was up to the frame in mud, and he'd spun his tires so much the whole car was high centered. I tried to get him out once without chaining up, but this quickly proved futile, so I chained up the Super Duty and hooked up. It wasn't a straight pull either, so I had to pull him sideways first, and then drag him out backwards about 200' feet. I wasn't going very fast, but when I hit the end of that jerk strap it really lived up to it's name and j.e.r.k.e.d (damn autocensor!) the crap out of that car. I had tried just pulling him out with brute force once, but that wasn't working, so I needed a little run at it. I managed to get him out, and he was able to drive it home, but I noticed the car disappeared shortly after this, so I figured it must have been damaged during the extraction (hence figuring it was my fault). Like I noted, I did feel bad, but it was an old beater anyway, and those kids go through old beaters like candy (they've got a yard full of them). The way I figured, if it was too big of a deal they knew where to come find me if they wanted to "discuss" the matter.
I definitely wouldn't want to try what I did with a newer/nicer car. Consequently, I figured I should get a better recovery set up. I'm really interested to see how well this kinetic rope works. I did some research and they say you're not supposed to use them for towing a vehicle, mainly just extraction, but I rarely tow a vehicle anyway. If it can't drive on it's own I just go get my trailer and pull it up on that. Towing vehicles with a tow chain or rope sucks anyway.
The other thing I was contemplating was getting a 6' foot towing bridle like they use on some wreckers, the kind with the J-hooks on them. So many of these cars now just don't have anything to hook to without one. And, we really do have a lot of people who get stuck out here every year. We all help each other out.
Thoughts / comments?