Self-Retracting Lanyard (Retractable)

There are three manufacturers of retractable that I trust Miller, Guardian and 3M DBI-SALA.

#1 Pick

 I am just going to put this out there 3M DBI-SALA is a terrible name for a product line. That being said SALA really delivers. They have all of the latest and greatest features in their Nano-Lok™ Edge. You will find no shortage of hook options as they offer nine. It is rated for up to 310 lbs. The Eight foot of cable gives you ample reach. Another feature SALA adds to all of their Fall protection products is an RFID tag that helps the user record and store information on inspections. On top of all that it looks good.
#2 Pick

Miller has been a fall protection staple on the jobsite for years. The products of theirs that I have used have all been very solid and reliable. They recently won an ISHN readers choice award with their Turbolite Edge™. The Turbolites do have a nice selection of hooks and are rated at an impressive 420lbs. They do seem harder to find and tend to be a little pricier than the 3M Nano-Lok. That being said the eggheads at Miller do make a great product and virtually on even ground with the 3M Nano-Lok edge. If you suspect that you might have an extra large 310 lbs + egg that will be using your retractable invest in this Miller TurboLite Edge, If not stick with the 3M.

#3 Pick

Guardian’s Halo™ line is a solid contender. I have used the Halo Edge at work its solid aluminum case makes it feel very durable; Yet, a little on the heavy side, to be wearing on your back for a long work day. Guardian does tend to run a little less expensive than the other two lines. They have fewer hook options;But, the steel rebar hook and eleven feet of lanyard on the one I have linked is very versatile . I would prefer a cable lanyard for durability but the webbing keeps weight down.

100% Tie-Off Retractable

Now, 100% tie-off is just two retractables hooked to the same harness. So, worst case scenario you just buy two retractables and hook them to the same D-ring. Right? Well no not really and here is why. While some of the lower end retractables come with a carabiner to hook to your harnesses D-ring the better ones come with a connector that hooks directly to the webbing of your harness directly below the D-ring.  If you buy a single leg retractable it will come with a single leg connector. If you hook two retractables to a single leg connector during a fall the gate of the connector could fail. You could buy the connector separately but they can cost as much as $80 by themself.

My #1 Pick

That being said I still believe that the Sala Nano-Lok edge is the best on the market. It is not the cheapest. But, I feel that it is the safest, it feels light enough (even with two legs) and the backpack style energy absorber actually spreads the weight some to make it more comfortable to me. Its lifeline is cable instead of webbing, so it is abrasion resistant and it can hold up to hot work.
My #2 Pick

Same applies here as it does above. The TurboLite Edge is nice but unless you weigh 300 lbs or more I would go with the Nano-Lok. If you [plus your gear] is even close to 310 lbs go with the TurboLite Edge. (You never know when you will go up an egg size…)

 

#3 Double-Legged Self-Retracting Lifeline

I chose this 6ft twin leg 3M DBI Sala Nano-Lok for it’s value. It is a nice little 100% tie-off srl kit whoose lifeline is made of webbing which makes it lighter. The webbing will work fine in a lot of situations. It has a built in shock absorber to make it suitable for foot level tie-off on a leading edge. but it is not recommended for sharp edges.

 

Arc Flash Rated

If you are  linesman or an electrician and need arc flash rated fall protection choices are limited. Fortunately, it is a trusty ole’ SALA Nano-Lok. The arc flash rated model is made with kevlar webbing and is available with all the hooks that you have come to love with SALA. It can be purchased as a single-leg or double leg retractable.


 

Other Stuffs…

Sometimes, when you are way up high, you may need other stuff. Here are my suggestions on other stuff.