A Quick Introduction to Common Types of Ratchet Straps & Tie Downs

Anyone who has worked in the cargo industry knows what tie-downs and ratchet straps are. No matter the size and type of the cargo you haul, you cannot underestimate the power of having a strong fastener.

 Simply put, tie-downs and ratchet straps are fasteners used to secure cargo during transport. They are used for a wide variety of applications ranging from kayak to car transportation.

Light duty fasteners are best suited for lightweight equipment while strong straps are perfect for the trucking industry. When looking for a ratchet strap or a tie-down, you need to select the right one for your needs.

To help you, here are the different types of tie-downs and ratchet straps available in the market.

  1. Cam Buckle Straps

Cam buckle is undoubtedly the most common type of buckle for most tie-down straps. The buckle employs a cam mechanism consisting of teeth to secure the strap.

To utilize it, attach the free end of the tie-down strap to the buckle and pull the strap to a tight position. The teeth are angled to prevent slipping of the strap and ensure a tight fit. When you need to release the strap, all you do is push the cam mechanism and pull the now free strap.

  1. Winches

Also referred to as winch straps, these straps are made for heavy-duty applications. Typically, a winch doesn’t come with a tightening built. Instead, a hook is attached to one end of the strap to act as an anchor point.

The other end without a hook feeds into a winch and is permanently mounted on a trailer. Once the winch is cracked with a removable handle, the strap is tightened down.

  1. Retractable Ratchet Straps

Cam buckles are awesome but can present the challenge of releasing the loose end of a trap. The loose strap can drag on the ground, get in the way, or slap against your cargo during transportation.

Apart from compromising on the safety of the public, having a loose strap while driving on the highway makes transportation uncomfortable.  A retractable ratchet strap is attached to the housing of the ratcheting mechanism.

To secure your cargo, simply pull as much strap as needed. As you operate the ratchet, any loose strap is wound back to the mechanism.

  1. A Two-Piece Strap

A two-piece tie-down is an assembly consisting of two independent pieces of webbing with each having separate hardware. The hardware is essentially fastened on one side of the equipment for extra protection. The separate hardware typically connects at the fastener.

  1. Cargo Straps

Last but not least, cargo straps combine hooks located at each end and a ratcheted tightening mechanism. The hooks come in different types including flat hooks, double- J hooks, S-hooks, and customizable E-track connectors.

For heavy loads, axle tie-down straps are preferred since they can handle heavy machinery. Cargo straps are often used in conjunction with ratchet wheel straps for effective transport.

There it is; 5 common types of tie-downs and ratchet straps. Each one is suited for a specific purpose in the cargo transportation business. The right choice depends on the weight and size of your cargo. Choose wisely!

Peach Salin