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HI PussFoot / Shauna,
Hi guys, I had a few questions regarding my closing loop and my main lines. I have been jumping my Mirage G4 for 4 years now and have recently noticed that my closing loop has began to wear faster and faster. I read your article on closing pins and how they can create premature wear however my closing loop seems to be in perfect condition.
Question 1: How often do you feel someone should replace their main closing loop?
Question 2: How long should my closing loop be?
Question 3: How often should a main closing pin be replaced?
Hi Steve ;)
Great questions! Here's what I've got for you:
Industry standard says that you should replace your main closing loop when it shows approx. 10% wear. Now, I don't know about you, but I couldn't definitively show you what "10% wear" is. I would recommend changing the closing loop if it becomes "fuzzy/frayed", "beat up/worn looking" or if you begin to question whether or not you should change it. I've seen main closing loops that are almost all the way worn through that the jumper doesn't see a problem with and I've also seen jumpers that will change the loops at the first sign on discoloration or slight wear. A closing loop generally costs $1. Is $1 really worth saving if you have a premature opening or worse yet, a malfunction resulting in a cutaway that you may or may not recover all parts? I'd say no.
Each manufacturer has their own guidance on how the main container closing flaps should sit. While some say that an offset of the grommets up to 3/4 of an inch is acceptable, others say that they should be stacked on top of each other. The main closing pin should fit snugly in the loop; not too loose to facilitate a premature opening and not too tight to cause a container lock (hard pull) scenario. Always check your specific manufacturers website for proper closing sequences and loop lengths.
I recently changed a main closing pin for a jumper that was experiencing main closing loops that were wearing abnormally faster than normal. Turns out that there was a nick in the pin and that's what was causing it. Unless there's damage to your closing pin, there's no need to change it. If your closing loop is wearing faster than normal, and you've already checked your pin; check your grommets on the flaps. Sometimes there can be a nick or gouge on the inside that will cause the wear that you can't readily see. Consult your rigger for immediate action to fix the problem. Also, don't discount the possibility of it wearing faster because of the way the rig is packed. If you or your packer is using either a pull up chord or a Power Tool, make sure that when you pull is out from the main closing loop, you slip it UNDER the pin to reduce the friction on the loop. This way the chord or the Power Tool material is rubbing in between the metal grommet and the metal closing pin and not the loop and the pin.
A quick YouTube search will reveal a variety of videos on closing loop lengths, installation and closing sequences. Some videos are produced by the manufacturers and some are not. Always refer back to the manufacturers for proper and endorsed guidance.
Thank you Steve for submitting your question and as always thank you Shauna for providing some good advice.