The first time shackles came around for vehicles, they were mostly metal, since this material was thought to be the only one strong enough to handle thousands of pounds at a time.
However, they also posed some dangerous risks and regular inconveniences for people.
That is why soft shackles were made. Even though these are built from much softer materials like synthetic fiber, they are capable of handling much higher weights! Besides, they also ensure higher levels of safety.
So here we are, with the best soft shackle options which bring both security and conveniences.
Ucreative Synthetic Soft Shackle
5 out of 5
Kohree Synthetic Soft Shackle
5 out of 5
SAMLIGHTING Black Synthetic Soft Shackle Rope
4.5 out of 5
4 out of 5
Astra Depot Set of Two 1/2" Synthetic Soft Rope Shackles
4.5 out of 5
Top Soft Shackle Comparison Chart
Ucreative Synthetic Soft Shackle
Kohree Synthetic Soft Shackle
SAMLIGHTING Black Synthetic Soft Shackle Rope
Bubba Rope Synthetic Shackle
Astra Depot Synthetic Soft Rope Shackles
Top 5 Recommended Best Soft Shackle Reviews in 2021
1. Ucreative Synthetic Soft Shackle
Staying true to their name, the brand of Ucreative brings you this soft shackle which is available in many colors instead of just one. You can get it in three colors of blue, orange and gray - a palette that compliments all the usual color groups for tow trucks or other outdoor objects.
Besides, depending on your requirements, you can get them as a single piece or a pair. So you don’t have to spend more than you need and save the extra cost for other important purchases.
These shackles are made from synthetic fiber which is incredibly strong and far more durable than almost any natural fibers. They also provide the additional benefits of waterproofing, stretching and stain resistance. Being manufactured with high-quality Belgian glue, these shackles don’t smell as bad as others either.
Because of so many convenient properties, you can use them for different activities including boating, personal watercraft, climbing, camping and off-road vehicles like ATV or SUV.
The rope of this soft shackle measures 7/16 inch in diameter and 20 inches in length. It can withstand up to 35,000 lbs of stress without breaking down.
- Packs of 1 or 2 with three colors of blue, orange and gray.
- Made of synthetic fiber and with high-quality Belgian glue.
- The rope is 20 inches long with a diameter of 7/16 inch.
- Affordable shackles with a breaking strength of 35,000 lbs.
- Ideal for boating, camping, climbing, off-road vehicle etc.
2. Kohree Synthetic Soft Shackle
Even though the brand of Kohree is primarily focused on lights, it has proved to be reliable in developing and providing boat and automotive accessories as well. A popular item from this collection is their black synthetic soft shackles.
Similar to the first one, this shackle is also measured to be 20 inches long and possessing a diameter of 7/16 inch. It is constructed from heavy-duty synthetic rope fibers which ensure high durability and safety simultaneously. You can use it to manipulate up to 35,000 lbs of objects without breaking the rope.
With this soft shackle, 4x4 cars or similar vehicles can be hoisted right out of mud. Its resistance is enhanced further with the extra premium PVC edge paint which makes it a better choice than traditional steel shackles.
Because of such sturdiness and flexibility, it can be used to pull up the vehicle or any other heavy item from snow, ditches and other tricky areas as well. Doing so will not harm the paint or finish of your vehicle because of its abrasion protection properties.
You can either get it in a pack of a single piece, or invest in the packs offering a pair or two pairs of these shackles.
- Available in packs of 1, 2 or 4 pieces.
- Made from heavy-duty synthetic rope fibers.
- Built to have a breaking strength of 35,000 lbs.
- Resistance enhanced by premium PVC edge paint.
- Has abrasion protection and self-tightening design.
3. SAMLIGHTING Black Synthetic Soft Shackle Rope
If the usual diameter of 7/16 inch is not cutting it for you, get ready to check out this shackle made with a slightly larger diameter of half an inch. Because of its bigger diameter and sturdy built, you can use this shackle to pull vehicles or objects which are as heavy as 38,000 lbs!
Such high strength makes it an ideal substitute for steel shackles. Each of these synthetic shackles has been constructed from a single piece of UHMWPE rope. That is why it can be attached and unattached with ease. You can fasten them without any pin which will surely speed up your process.
Along with the convenience of efficiency and incredible strength, it also offers versatility. These shackles can be used for a variety of activities like off-road boating of SUV, ATV, marine truck and more such heavy vehicles. Its construction ensures there will be no rattling or any damage on their bumper paint.
Every piece comes with a protective sleeve which keeps it safe from overheating and slippage. Because of so many beneficial properties, they are considered to be the best soft rope shackle by many. They are 22 inches long and half an inch in diameter. Each pack contains a pair of these in either the color black or blue.
- Comes in three colors of black and blue.
- One-piece construction doesn’t need pins.
- The material doesn’t damage bumper paint.
- Capable of withstanding 38,000 lbs. of weight.
- Comes with a protective sleeve for each rope.
4. Bubba Rope Mega Gator-Jaw® PRO Synthetic Shackle
Bubba Rope has been building a rich history since its inception with an award-winning packaging design and global recognition of their products.
The most popular series from their collection includes the Gator-Jaw PRO soft shackles. We have picked its Mega version as the best soft shackle you can find at a premium price. Its high cost may seem too much compared to other options you have seen so far. However, its features are also much more high-end than others.
These shackles are built from Plasma which is an exclusive synthetic rope with the highest strength available. On top of that, its manufacturing process also includes a coating of vinyl urethane which is proprietary to Bubba Rope. This coating makes the shackles safe from abrasion and thus extend their longevity.
It has a distinctively designed button knot, as well as a self-tightening loop which ensures no slip-off at the time of use. Besides, each piece goes through a test before going into packaging and shipping.
Because of so many attributes carefully picked and incorporated into its structure, the Mega Gator-Jaw PRO shackles can provide massive breaking stress of 1,25,000 lbs. with just a ⅝ inch diameter! You can get it in three colors of blue, yellow and green, in packs of a single piece or a pair.
- ⅝ inch diameter shackles made of Plasma®.
- Available in blue, yellow and green colors.
- Proprietary coating for abrasion protection.
- Huge breaking strength of 1,25,000 lbs.
- Unique designed button knot doesn’t slip off.
5. Astra Depot Set of Two 1/2" Synthetic Soft Rope Shackles
Astra Depot is a corporation that focuses on providing automotive accessories for all kinds of transport systems including trucks, SUVs, motorcycles, cars and vans. One of their most widely known products is this synthetic soft rope shackle that is highly convenient and powerful at the same time.
It is made from ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene or UHMWPE which is a type of thermoplastic polyethylene. Also known as HMPE, the chains made out of this material can transfer loads more effectively than usual. With this tough material, you will be able to work with a breaking stress of 38,000 lbs.
These shackles have a thickness of half an inch. When fastened, it creates a loop that is 7 inches long. It may seem smaller than some other soft shackles, but it does perform equally well if not better than them. You can use them as off-road soft shackle, or for on-road, ATVs, cars, 4x4s and more!
Even though it is very lightweight, these shackles are incredibly durable. To enhance their durability, protective sleeves have been provided in each package. You can get them in packs of 1, 2, 4, 5 or 10 pieces. Since it floats in water and mud, you don’t stress over losing them.
- Comes in packs of 1, 2, 4, 5 and 10 pieces.
- UHMWPE shackles with ½ inch diameter.
- Can handle weight of up to 38,000 lbs.
- Durable and lightweight at the same time.
- Protective sleeve included in each package.
Soft Shackle Buying Guide
As with anything else, the size of a soft shackle matters to make it work properly with your vehicles. Keep the focus on its diameter since this factor will matter the most when it comes to towing or sailing a vehicle. Their diameters range between 3/16 inch and 2 inches so you should have plenty to choose from.
Almost every soft shackle is made from some variation of synthetic fiber. The best soft shackle should be built with a material that is both strong and lightweight at the same time. Some of the most popular choices in this regard would be ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) and Plasma rope.
Also, take the coating material into account since it will decide how long the shackles will last with its abrasion control properties.
Even though they are way softer than steel shackles, the soft shackles can offer much higher breaking stress if you choose the right one. This amount can range from just 2,700 lbs. to 20,000 lbs. to as much as 125,000 lbs. Of course, the higher strength also comes with a higher price point.
To give a major boost to the durability of your soft shackles, almost every piece of soft shackles comes with a protective sleeve. This keeps the shackles safe from overheating or slipping away from the bunker or the structure you tied them to. As a result, it has become a necessity instead of an accessory for such shackles.
The price points that soft shackles come in vary widely. A piece of synthetic rope shackle can be as affordable as below 20 bucks, or something that costs about a couple hundred dollars! Of course, the expensive soft shackles are made with multiple high-end features which make them worth the investment.
Soft Shackle vs D Ring
It may sound crazy to many but soft shackles offer much higher breaking stress than D-rings or metal shackles. While the latter can withstand about 10,000 lbs. of weight, the soft shackles can offer breaking stress of up to 125,000 lbs. So you can use these specialized chains to tow or sail much heavier vehicles than D-ring.
Because of both the structure and material of these two types of shackles, it becomes easier to both fasten and undo the soft ones.
In the case of a D-ring, you will need to roll out the pin every time to attach it to another vehicle or object. On the other hand, you just need to put one end into another one for fastening the soft shackles. As a result, you can get the job done in a shorter timeframe and also make the task easier for yourself.
Portability And Safety
You will have a tough time carrying around D-rings because of their huge weight. Besides, if it happens to accidentally hit some other car’s window or a similar fragile object, the D-ring will shatter it to pieces because of its heavyweight structure.
In contrast, soft shackles made of synthetic fiber are much lighter and thus easier to carry around or just keep in your bag. There is also no safety issue with it since such a soft object cannot harm any other object close to your automobiles.
A common issue with the usual metal shackles or D-rings is how they perform in wet areas. If you detach them and drop them into mud or water by mistake, their heavyweight body will cause them to drown and make it harder for you to retrieve them.
On the flip side, the lightweight structure of soft shackles just lets them float on mud or water. As a result, you may never lose them in such circumstances and can retrieve them with little effort.
Frequently Asked Questions
How To Take Care Of Soft Shackles?
Answer: It is common for soft shackle to lose about 5% of its strength every year. That is why you should make sure that they are not left in the sun for too long since that will contribute to their loss of power.
When they fall into the mud or get dirty in some other way, rinse them immediately and let them air dry in a cool shaded place. Before picking them up from there, check if they have dried down completely.
What Does WLL Mean On A Shackle?
Answer: The three letters you have seen in almost every shackle is an abbreviation for Working Load Limit. This number signifies the maximum working load as specified by its manufacturer. It can range from just a few thousand pounds to over a hundred thousand to work with different vehicles.
How Do You Use A Soft Shackle?
Answer: Using a soft shackle is incredibly simple. If it is delivered as a knot, open the noose at first and then remove the not from this noose. Then pass the two ends through the two vehicles or objects you need to connect. If either of these two objects is sharp, it is safer to use a protective sleeve on your soft shackles.
What Does Minimum Breaking Load Mean?
Answer: The minimum breaking load or MBL is another way to describe the WLL or breaking strength. It refers to the maximum force that your rope or soft shackle can withstand under straight pull without breaking down. Just like WLL, it varies a lot depending on its intended use.
Finding the best soft shackle for your work will not only make the job easier for you, but it will also ensure better safety for yourself and other people around. Because of the wide range of price that they are available at, with a little guide, you can easily pick the one suited for your endeavors and budget plans.
Hopefully, this guide will help you in that pursuit.
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