Shackle Header

shackle, also known as a gyve, is a U-shaped piece of metal secured with a clevis pin or bolt across the opening, or a hinged metal loop secured with a quick-release locking pin mechanism.

Below are a few of the more common types of shackles:

Bow shackles

With a larger “O” shape to the loop, this shackle can take loads from many directions without developing as much side load. However, the larger shape to the loop does reduce its overall strength. Also referred to as an anchor shackle.

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D-shackles

Also known as a chain shackle, D-shackles are narrow shackles shaped like a loop of chain, usually with a pin or threaded pin closure. D-shackles are very common and most other shackle types are a variation of the D-shackle. The small loop can take high loads primarily in line. Side and racking loads may twist or bend a D-shackle.

D-Shackle

Pin shackles

A pin shackle is closed with an anchor bolt and cotter pin, in a manner similar to a clevis. It is for this reason they are often referred to, in industrial jargon, as clevises. Pin shackles can be inconvenient to work with, at times, as the bolt will need to be secured to the shackle body to avoid its loss, usually with a split pin or seizing wire. A more secure version used in crane rigging features the combination of a securing nut (hardware) located alongside the cotter pin. Pin shackles are practical in many rigging applications where the anchor bolt is expected to experience some rotation.

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Snap shackles

As the name implies, a snap shackle is a fast action fastener which can be implemented single-handedly. It uses a spring-activated locking mechanism to close a hinged shackle, and can be unfastened under load. This is a potential safety hazard, but can also be extremely useful at times. The snap shackle is not as secure as any other form of shackle, but can come in handy for temporary uses or in situations which must be moved or replaced often, such as a sailor’s harness tether or to attach spinnaker sheets. Note: When this type of shackle is used to release a significant load, it will work rather poorly (hard to release) and is likely to have the pin assembly or the split ring fail.
Snap Shackle
Headboard shackles
This longer version of D-shackles is used to attach halyards to sails, especially sails fitted with a headboard such as on Bermuda rigged boats. Headboard shackles are often stamped from flat strap stainless steel, and feature an additional pin between the top of the loop and the bottom so the headboard does not chafe the spliced eye of the halyard.

Headboard Shackle

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