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BigWadeS

Tree Safety Harness

20 posts in this topic

Okay so I am a big guy, 6'5" 345lbs and have not been able to find a safety harness that fits, if it fits around my shoulders and back then it isn't long enough to go down to my legs, are there any other big guys on here that use one, if so what do you use? I am not worried about price as I am move worried about safety and the ability to use a lone wolf stand as opposed to 2-man ladder stand all the time.

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I am 6'5" but I weigh 225. I use a Hunter Safety System harness that I bought at Cabela's. The leg strap length is fine for me. I looked at the package it came in; mine is large/xlarge for 175-250 lb; they have a 2x/3x for 250 lb. plus. Whether the larger sized one would be rated for your weight or not, I am not sure, but you could look into it.

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At 345lbs you may have a tough time finding a recreational use safety harness that will be rated to handle that weight. You may need to check into a industrial/commercial one. These have higher weight ratings to support a person and their tool belt. You may find these for sale at an electrical supply or some equipment rental places may sell them. Grainger, MSC, and some of the other industrial suppliers have them available online. The industrial safety harnesses that i have seen have all steel harware and lots of adjustment range on the straps. They usually are not camo so would need to be worn under a jacket. you would also need to find your own tree strap and safety line.

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Hunter Safety System sixe 3xl should be the ticket. I'm 6'4 and weigh 275 and have no problem using one.

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I use the hunter safety system harness myself (see above). I did look it up on the web and all their harnesses including 3xl are rated to 300 lb. Since bigwade is at 345, it may not be a safe option for him.

Crow Hunter

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yeah and I know and talked to a rep for them and said they are rated for X amount and would hold X amount, but then again I don't want to find out the hard way, guess I might just have to build a few stands out of wood, now to try to get up to the land to get that done

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I got an Exofit harness about 5 years ago. It has worked really well, and is very comfortable. It saved me once last year.

Exofit harnesses are used by linemen and window cleaners. I did some looking and the really did not show the weight limits. I did see a chart that showed the large size goes to 310 ponds, but the do sell an extra large. They are not cheap, they start out at $200. Mine is camo, but the ones i find now are blue.

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I just found a size chart. Exofit harness go up to XXXL, and that is 6'8" and 420 lbs.

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DO most of you bow hunters use harnesses? I have only used mine a couple times. I like to use it when setting my tree steps. Works good for that but is kind of cumbersome to have on. I suppose I will get a good butt chewing now.

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Jim, thanks for that, trying to find the HSOforum now, do you remember where you got yours at?

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DO most of you bow hunters use harnesses? I have only used mine a couple times. I like to use it when setting my tree steps. Works good for that but is kind of cumbersome to have on. I suppose I will get a good butt chewing now.

Whats your life worth? Or what is the quality of your life worth, meaning do you care if you spend the rest of your life as a cripple? When I first started bowhunting, I didn't wear a safty rope either. Then I started reading about bowhunters killing and crippling themselves by falling out of trees and it was an easy choice, I bought a safty harness because I didn't want to spend the rest of my life as a cripple. Cumbersome and unhandy? Maybe, but when I'm 16 feet up I feel comfortable and I know that in a moment of excitement, or if I fall asleep or if the stand breaks that I'm strapped in and won't become a CRIPPLE. Its your choice though, just like its people's choice whether they wear a seat belt or smoke cigarettes.

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I've run into two incidents.

In one case the hunter stepped in his tree stand and the stand failed. Hunter fell to the ground and shattered his ankle. When we helped him out of the woods his ankle was the size of the grape fruit.

In the other incident the hunter actually died while hanging his deer stand. I love to hunt but others are relying on me to come home.

I now have two safety harnesses and I prefer the "vest" style as they are much easier to get on. I have two Gorilla vests.

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I do not bow hunt, but I sure feel vulnerable up in my porty deer stand with out a harness when I am gun hunting. Maybe in a large freshly built permanent I would feel safer with out one, but you never know.

One thing to do with the harness is follow the directions to a “T”.

You would hate to fall out and hang your self or compromise the harness.

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I just got a safety harness after season last year and plan on wearing it a lot this year. Depends on the stand that i am in if i will wear one. there is one stand that i hunt in that is a shorter ladder stand(10-12ft), sometimes i wear it, sometimes i don't. (all i used to have was a belt, not a harness) When i put up a hang on stand i usually put them way up there, so i do plan on wearing it when ever i am up one of them. I have hunted out of a ladder stand with a rail around, i also did not wear one then.

One note about safety harnesses: make sure you get one that the straps for your legs come straight from the tie off point on your back(so the weight carried by the leg straps travels up throught the straps on your back and straight to the lanyard adn to the tree). The one i have was on sale at FF last year after season, and the straps for the legs come from the front, so if you are hanging from it, the leg straps do little, and what they do help with, the force travels through the straps around my chest and would probably crush my ribs if i fell very far. I don't have the money to buy another better one, so i make due by tying off as high as possible.

Sorry for the long rant, just something to think about when buying a harness.

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I have heard that the Gorilla vest is pretty good and has felt on the snaps/buckles and small knife to cut yourself free if you happen to fall. Tried on a HSS the other day and it seemed very heavy and weighed you down allot, is this just the way they are and is the Gorills the same way?

I usually don't use a safety system on my lower ladder stands but I do want one for my 20+ ft that do scare the [PoorWordUsage] out of me. Any opinions or experience with a Gorilla?

mr

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Tried on a gorilla harness and it didn't seem overly heavy, although it didn't feel like it was "tight" enough. Maybe just the wrong size though.

On the use of a safety harness, I didn't use one when I first started hunting. Then about 4 or 5 years ago while I was practicing from my stand in the back yard a near miss happened. As I was pulling back my bow my release unexpecedly broke in-two about mid draw, inturn I essentially punched my self in the face and lost balance and fell back into the tree, luckly catching myself. If I had step another 6in either way I would have fallen 16 ft, god only knowing what would have happened. I have had a harness one EVERY time up a stand since. Unexpected accidents can happen at anytime.

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Anyfish,

thanks for the reality that comes at us unannounced. I will be looking at the Gorilla this week at a local retailer.

thanks,

mr

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Personally I use both a harness and safety line. Use that prussic knot that slides up and down the line attached to a heavy duty carabiner to my harness and I'm good to go. Those safety lines are a very cheap and safe addition, but remember that you still have to climb the tree and its only as safe as your knot at the top of the tree!

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i LIKE THE HUNTER SAFTY SYSTEM I DON'T FEEL RESTRICTED IN ANY WAY. THE PLUS ID THE POCKETS FOR RANGE FINDER ETC. IT TAKES 1 MIN TO PUT ON AND OFF. I HAVE NOT USED ANNOTHER VEST TYPE ONLY FULL HARNESS AND IT TOOK WAY TO LONG TO DO UP. THE PRICE DOES NOT BOTHER ME AS I HAVE KNOWN 2 PEOPLE WHO DIED WHO FELL OUT OF THE STAND AND 1 THAT WORE A BELT TYPE THAT SLID UP TO HIS CHEST AND HE SUFFOCATED. SO I WILL ALWAYS USE A HARNESS WITH LEG STRAP SO I HAVE FREE hANDS TO CLIMB BACK IN.

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