When is it OK to try and pull out the odd stuck truck?

e9999

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Curious about something...
I read here the occasional report on how your Mall cruiser LC had to pull out the battle-ready H2 out of the bog every so often <G> (<cheesy music on> Ooooh, what a feelin'...! <music off>)
Anyway, how do I know if it's OK to be the good samaritan and yet not blow my drivetrain out by trying to get the Heep or whatever out of the quicksand? Kind of hard to refuse or not try if the guy is stuck in the middle of nowhere. Yet blowing one's rig is no fun either.

I mean, waddayado? You just pull hard and stop if nothing happens, or if the wheels spin, or if smoke comes out of your AT, or what? Or eyeball how bad the Heep is stuck? (That would not work for a newbie like me though.)

Advice on how to handle the situation?

Eric
 
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Frankly, if you don't know how to safely do this, then simply decline to try a recovery and offer to help in another way such as driving to cell range and calling his buddy, etc. If you're not reasonably experienced in recovery, it should be considered something dangerous in the realm of motoring. I am assuming from the tone of your post that you are not mechanically inclined and if that is so, then don't attempt something that can actually kill you.

What you do is too dependent upon your experience, the situation at hand, the equipment available for use and the driver of the stuck vehicle for a simple post. I recommend you research this a bit on your own and come to us with questions. You should also do a search here of course.

Whatever you do, don't ever attempt to recover a solidly stuck vehicle in reverse. The engine makes enough power in low range to damage your drivetrain in reverse.

Doug
 

woody

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I pull others in stages....

first time, get the stretch strap tight and see if just the added weight/traction of my rig will pop them loose.

2nd time, get a 2-3' run on the loose strap and give 'er a pop. If it moves, repeat until free. ALWAYS stop QUICK once your forward motion stops (had to pull out TWO S-10's once cause they let the strap stay tight while they spun tires, only to find both stuck in forward and reverse...)

3rd time, a bit more slack...however, if they are too stuck for a little momentum, I'll usually offer a ride to find something bigger.

Using a stretch/snatch strap is a talent, and once you understand how they work, you quickly learn that once you've hit the end of the stretch, sitting there spinning is useless. 4-5 quick pops are easier on both rigs than nailing it and watching the terrain spin out from under your tires.

I rely on both a 2" and 3" 20' strap...most of my pulls are in rock, where 30' is too long, and I'm not aggressive enuf with the skinny pedal to need a bigger one.

Also, when in doubt pull downhill. I did a rear pinion pulling a Chev uphill once, even SUA.

Also, a buddy did a rear pinion when he gave a hard pull and stayed in the power. Any bounce when using a strap is 50x worse...
 
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Ahh , I will attest to the danger to the uninitiated factor ...

Got my 4Runner stuck deep in a bog ... some guys drove up in a pickup . The only rope we had was my 9mm climbing rope . We tied ourselves together and he slowly grunted forward . Well sure as s*** the rope stretched , then snapped . I forever more had a permanent , snake-like 'imprint' in my tailgate !! Thankfully it wasn't a static rope vs my neck !

Get a proper recovery kit once you've been to a club and picked brains , and even practised some of the techniques ... then send me a video ;) ;)
 

e9999

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D.
"not mechanically inclined..." ????
Ayeeee!
Them are fightin' words, buddy! On this Forum, this gotta qualify easily as the worst insult! As in "you stole your Momma's Mall cruiser Heep to drive cuz you couldn't find the CDL switch on your own LC" ?
For crying out loud!
<j/k>
I prefer to ask the question first when I don't know...
and yes, thanks for the good advice
thanks
Eric
 
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Eric I think you’re in serious need of a local club. One weekend on the trail even riding shotgun would be like a year of your research on the web. Some things just have to be seen up close and personal. Don't take offense at what I'm saying I am just trying to help. YOU NEED HELP. And the best way to get that help is join TLCA, pay your dues then find a group of like minded individuals. Look for rigs that are approximate to what you want to do and start asking questions. I promise they won't bite. Some things just don’t jive well on the net. Things like drugs, sex and rock and roll are best experienced first hand. Add to that vehicle recovery.
:cheers:
Nick
 

GXO

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Doug and Woody both make good points.

Remember...if you feel pressured or nervous about a recovery...step down or go get help.

PLEASE do not use those damn straps with metal hooks one em...I have seen those being used improperly and the hook shot off and into a truck...stuck in the head rest of the driver's seat...

NOT GOOD.
 
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I learned to extract myself first. I swear, 2 days after I hooked my winch up I got stuck. Stuck up to the doors in a ditch in mud. Luckily I had even put the remote in there. Learned very quickly what I didn't have in my rig. Also learned an expensive lesson to unspin the coils out of your winch cable before you put it under load or it will fawk it up ::)

Used a chunk of rope off of my roll bar for a quick tree saver and learned rather quickly that pulling sideways uphill is kinda scary (only tree available). Freed the rig, had fun doing it. I now keep the required gear to extract myself in my rig at all times.

A tip I follow on extracting others...use your own gear. You know it, you know how to use it and you know it's safe (or better be). Be smart, high centered is alot different then up to the hood in GA mud. There is an equation somewhere about the simulated weight your pulling when a vehicle is stuck, I will try to find it and post it up (It's a good read). A vehicle can quickly outweigh your gear, even on a light vehicle. Do the math first. When s*** goes bad it goes bad VERY quickly.

Be safe.
 
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I personally refer to that as the hook of death. always cringe when I see one. I have personally had one snap off of the rear of my pig while towing a h**p. Yes I know I should have gone home and picked up my straps and come back but he had the peice of chit in his rig and a blown clutch slave cylinder so what to you do? basically listen to doug if you are unsure about anything regarding a pull back down and get help for hem in another way.
Dave
 
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The nature of the surface to be transmitted is the largest variable in the winching equation. A vehicle in good running order on a metalled surface will only require a force of about 1/25 its total weight to induce movement, whereas a vehicle to be recovered from a bog will require a pull equivalent to about 1/2 the total weight of the vehicle. The table below shows that different surfaces require proportionate efforts to produce vehicle movement

Type of Surface




Effort required to move a vehicle as a fraction of total weight
As a percentage of total weight

Hard metalled road
1/25 total weight of Vehicle
(4%)

Grass
1/7 total weight of Vehicle
(14%)

Sand (hard wet)
1/16 total weight of Vehicle
(17%)

Gravel
1/5 total weight of Vehicle
(20%)

Sand (soft wet)
1/5 total weight of Vehicle
(20%)

Sand (soft/dry/loose)
1/4 total weight of Vehicle
(25%)

Shallow mud
1/3 total weight of Vehicle
(33%)

Bog
1/2 total weight of Vehicle
(50%)

Marsh
1/2 total weight of Vehicle
(50%)

Clay (clinging)
1/2 total weight of Vehicle
(50%)

A simple calculation will show that approximate rolling resistance of an undamaged vehicle on a flat surface can be predicted e.g. the pull required to move a Land Rover Ninety weighing about 2000kg (44001b) along a flat sandy beach of hard wet sand, co-efficient 1/6.

If we take the weight of the vehicle (in kilogram’s) and multiply it by the co-efficient of the resistance of hard wet sand from the table of efforts required to move a vehicle as a fraction of its total weight, we get this calculation.

Weight of vehicle x co-efficient of wet sand

2000kg x 1/6 = 333kg = effort required to move vehicle in this case

However, as well as all surfaces are not flat, the calculation must therefore include a gradient resistance co-efficient.



(iv) The gradient up which the vehicle is to be moved

The gradient up which the vehicle is to be moved (gradient resistance) may only cover a short distance over the total distance of the pull, e.g. a ditch or rock, or it may cover a long climb up a hill. Even for a relatively short upward pull, gradient resistance must be taken into account. That the slope to be negotiated to all intents and purposes is only 150mm (6") high will make no difference to the calculations and should be borne in mind when winching over ridges.

For practical winching purposes, gradient resistance can be taken as 1/60 of the weight of the vehicle for each degree of the slope, up to 450 incline. For inclines over 45 the gradient resistance will be equal to the total weight of the vehicle.

Again a simple calculation can predict the total effort in kilograms required to move our 2000kgs Land Rover up an incline of 15

I.e. gradient x weight of vehicle

60

Which is 15 x 2000kgs 500kgs

60

If we combine the weight of the vehicle, the type of surface to be transited and the gradient to be overcome we get the calculation.

Weight of Vehicle + (Gradient x Weight of Vehicle)

Surface to be transited 60

Therefore the winching formula is

W + (GxW) = effort required

S 60

When W = Weight of vehicle

S = Surface to be transited

G = Angle of gradient (in degrees)

Using this winching formula it is now possible to predict the total effort required to move a vehicle in most winching situations.

Example: A Land Rover 90 weighing 2000kgs (4400lbs) is to be winched up a sand dune of dry loose sand with an incline of 150.

Using the winching formula W + (GxW) = effort required

S 60

Where W = 2000kg (vehicle weight)

S = 1/4 (co-efficient for dry loose sand)

G = 15 (slope in degrees)

We have 2000 + (15 x 2000) = 500 + 500

4 60

l000kgs of effort required to recover the vehicle in these circumstances.

However, if we substitute clinging clay for the surface (co-efficient of 1/2) and 35 for the gradient (shape) in the above equation we get

2000 + (35 x 2000) = 2 167kg (4 660lb) effort required

2 60

The effort required in this case may well be beyond the capabilities of the winch because the rating of a winch relates only to the first layer of wire on its drum and available pulling power decreases with each additional layer of wire rope in the winch drum. In the above case, a solution may be to run out all the winch cable to enable the winch to be used at or near its rated capacity, or introduce a pulley into the system to create a mechanical advantage.


Source: http://www.peak-recovery.fsnet.co.uk/rec/winching_in_safety.htm
 
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READ, READ, READ. Then watch people do it, and then read some more. You'll notice that a lot of people aren't as safe as they should be. There are plenty or resources right here in the tech section.

the article FJ40 was talking about I think is this one.

http://www.pirate4x4.com/tech/billavista/Recovery/

Which is linked to off of this board.

Google for 4x4 recovery and there are plenty of articles in the first 3 pages.
 

GXO

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:cheers: to Dan for that note!!

LISTEN TO IT! Write a damn contract if you have to...liability and litigation often mix with helping other people.
 
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I'll usually stop and try to help anyone who is stuck when I'm on personal time. (Mostly because if they get lost, I'll be back out there in the dark anyway... ::) ) I spent a lot; and I mean A LOT of time growing up getting myself and other vehicles unstuck. (Nothing else to do in Northern NM but play outdoors...)

Thus, I think Doug is right on. I've had years of experience and have taught classes on recovery and 4wd techniques, and still have much to learn, and am by no means an expert. However, when I do stop to lend a hand, if whomever it is wants my help, we're playin' by my rules, because doing this stuff the wrong way can get someone killed very quickly. Don't underestimate the power of physics when it comes to winch cables and straps.

When I'm on a rescue, we're not a tow service...rides only. If they don't want to leave the vehicle and their life may be in danger, they get to be arrested then get a ride... :doh: Either way they're gettin' a ride. They can arrange for a tow service later.

-H-
 
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I pulled this fetcher out last winter and when his strap snapped and damaged my rear hatch. The loser just chuckled. I almost unhooked and drove off when I saw him doing that. Anyways, I did pull him out and he continued up the trail. I didn't follow, but I assume he got stuck again. That was his problem. He was dumb enough to drive a fullsize beater with bald 30-31" tires up a very muddy trail. I'm not even sure if the roach was 4wd. The moral of this story is don't help p-dubs or others who don't care about your truck, but only about using you to free their truck so they can continue with their stupidity.

LinkPhoto
 

ginericLC

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I would try to stay away from the bigger rigs. I pulled an H2 out in April with my 91. That thing was like pulling a lead sled. There was not another rig in our group that could have even moved the H2. When you go out wheeling with a club you need to make sure that there is somebody of adequate size that can help you out before you attempt that mud crossing or snow crossing or ledge that you are going to break stuff on. If there isn't someone there to give you a hand bypass it. Knowing when to stop is really hard sometimes. There is an H2 that I'm going on a run with this weekend, and before inviting them I made sure that I had at least one other 80 in the group. Safety in numbers approach.

As a counter example, I pulled out a 63 passenger school bus with my old 87 Toyota 4 banger Pickup with a 4" 30 foot snatch em strap. They slid off the road into the ditch. I was lucky enough to be able to find a dry spot for traction and gave it a tug and then locked up my brakes. It dragged me back a little after each tug. But little by little I got the big bus out. It is amazing how much a snatch strap can do.

Another thing is, don't use Chains!!! They don't flex, and if something has to give it will be something really expensive and when it does it could kill someone.

Also having proper attachment points is key. Looping something is a really bad idea. Tossing a strap over a ball hitch is a terrible idea.

Winching is a real art. Some guys have it down. I've been studying the whole winching thing for about 6 years and I'm just starting to figure out some basics. We just don't have enough stucks which require a winch, I guess that is a good thing.

Also, if you don't have experience let someone you trust who knows what is going on asses and take control of the situation. If you aren't comfortable with it, don't do it. If the other party doesn't have experience explain to them in baby steps what the whole process should be like before starting. If something goes wrong, STOP! I've seen several pulls where something starts to go wrong and the person gases it and just tears things up.
 

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[quote author=ginericfj80 link=board=2;threadid=7452;start=msg62334#msg62334 date=1068673956]
Winching is a real art. Some guys have it down. I've been studying the whole winching thing for about 6 years and I'm just starting to figure out some basics. We just don't have enough stucks which require a winch, I guess that is a good thing. [/quote]

too true...I'm one of those experts in this, since every trip out requires me to winch myself over/thru something. I've even learned to winch my own rig over...not an easy task, believe me.

As noted by everyone, the entire process is a judgement call...you weigh your own driving/recovery/vehicle skills as well as those of your cohorts. I've made a few enemies, simply because I've told people PRIOR to them attempting something stupid that if they got stuck, I would leave them. I respect my own equipment too much to attempt pulling out a rig twice my size.
 

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