shackle safety tips

Ten Shackle Safety Tips

Ten Shackle Safety Tips

When to Remove Shackles from Service


Published in the Industry At A Glance Section of the April 2023 Wire Rope News & Sling Technology issue

There are a few things to keep in mind when using shackles. Here are some basic removal criteria to look for. If your shackles meet any of these criteria, they need to be taken out of service. Remember to keep your tension under the working load limit for your shackle. Be aware of your sling angles during the lift as they will impact how much tension your shackles will feel.

  1. Shackles need to have a legible manufacturer name or trademark, WWL, and size markings. If not, remove the shackles from service.
  2. Keep a watchful eye for excessive pitting or corrosion. If surface rust can be removed with a rag or a brush it is OK. If it starts to change the dimensions or eat into the metal take the shackle out of service.
  3. Bent, twisted, distorted, stretched, elongated, cracked, or broken load-bearing components. For any of these, remove the shackles from service.
  4. Check that the body and pin are the same size and from the same manufacturer. If there are not, remove the shackles from service or match the pin and bow back to their correct counterpart.
  5. A 10% reduction of the original or catalog dimension at ANY point around the Body or Pin – is immediate removal criteria.
  6. Incomplete pin engagement will require the shackle to be removed from service.
  7. Excessive nicks or gouges. Remove shackle.
  8. Excessive thread damage. If more than 20% of the length of thread engaged in the ear of the shackle or nut is damaged or corroded. Remove shackle.
  9. Any welding or modification to the shackle is immediate removal criteria. A cotter key is required on bolt-type shackles. Replacement parts shall meet or exceed the original equipment manufacturer’s specifications.
  10. Constantly have a watchful eye for things that don’t look correct. If you see anything, stop, and do an immediate inspection of the shackle. Even if you find something that doesn’t meet the specific criteria above if anything about the shackle makes you nervous take it out of service.

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