D-Shackles (D-Rings, Clevis)

d-shackle dimensions

McMaster Carr

4X4 ICON 2000 - 2008 The DVD! - Click here for details!

4X4 ICON 2000 - 2008 The DVD!



You'd think something simple like a D-shackle ("D-Ring", "clevis", etc.) would be a simple thing to buy.  Of course it is...  They are necessary for most types of recovery.  There is a bewildering variety of them available.  Some are for uses that do not require strength so it is necessary to be sure you are buying high-strength items.

With my new rear bumper came the prerequisite tabs for d-shackles.  The holes are 3/4" which is OK, would have liked the next size up for capacity sake but OK, I'll work with it.   The 3/4" hole for the pin translates to a 5/8" shackle so I went a-hunting.

Rear Detail - Click to Enlarge

My first reaction was to reach into my winch gear for the two 3/4" d-shackles that I bought at Tractor Supply some time ago more or less for this purpose.  DOH!   The shackle bow (or "u") is 3/4" but the pin is larger (7/8").   Nice to have but they won't fit the bumper.  Back to the drawing board.

Next I went to the Hi-Lift site since one shackle that I have fits and came from them in their off-road kit that they sell.  The d-shackle is no longer in the kit, but I hoped they might sell it separately.  Nope.  Fooled again.

OK, Quadratec here I come.   They have always matched prices for me so I figured I would go there, look for the WARN one (PN 13047).

Warn shackles

Tomken TMB-1544-D


They had one made by Tomken (TMB-1544-D)  $18.  Hmmm... 

The big powder coated ones at Tractor Supply were only $8...  But they don't have the ones I need (I went to three different stores).  There HAS to be a place that sells them for less (so I can do the price match or get a better deal.

So I hit Yahoo! and did a search.  Oh Goodie!  Look at these sweet things:

Stainless Steel, flush pin Stainless Steel, flush pin

And for the man who has everything, a thimble for the cable on my winch:

Oh now we're talking.  Nice pins, stainless steel (or titanium...) and polished.  We're talking major bling here.  Try $70 ~ $120 each...  Hahaha!   Nice looking, but that would be more than I paid for my bumper...   Regretfully moving right along...

Stainless Steel Thimble
Basically it continued to go this way for quite a while.  Finally I said to heck with this and went to Grainger and found this:

Butt ugly, but rated to 3.25 tons (I guess I won't be using it for anything too aggressive) and just under $9.

For what I saved by not buying the stainless steel or titanium beauties, I can buy a front bumper...  I wonder if my wife will buy that...

cast steel with alloy steel pin

So I ordered them after deciding that I really didn't want to drill out my bumper tabs and make them weaker.  I looked at doing that. Problem is, in my case, I'm not sure I would have enough wall thickness left on the tabs to be safe. It was tempting though.  I had decided that for now, these shackles will be good for jacking with the Hi-Lift or maybe a light tug with a strap or cable, but I won't be doing any jerks or major extractions with them...

Then someone suggested that I check out McMaster-Carr www.mcmaster.com and do a search on "anchor shackle".  This is what came up:

Galvanized Alloy Steel Forged Anchor Shackle
W/Screw Pin, 5/8" Material Dia, 10000 lb Wll
Quantity Each  1-9 Each $9.07


There we go!  A shackle with higher capacity (the ones from Grainger were only rated at 6500 lbs).  The pin sizing is a bit hard to nail down as the shackles are often labeled with the diameter of the bow, not the pin.  That little detail is confusing, and what led to my original mistake when I bought the ones from Tractor Supply (the "u" portion is labeled 3/4" but the pin is 7/8".)

Here is the picture that shows the different dimensions that catalog listings reference:

d-shackle dimensions

"B" is the pin size

"S" is the bow (u-shaped body) diameter

They typically refer to them by the bow diameter, but I needed to buy according to the pin diameter.

I canceled the Grainger order and went with the McMaster item.  It is galvanized alloy steel alloy vs. galvanized steel.  That's what makes the difference in capacity.  Only the pin was alloy steel on the one I had ordered from Grainger.  I feel so much better now!  With a 10,000 lb capacity, I should be able to use this to winch, and maybe even light tow strap use.

It's a little like going to the lumber store for a "2 x 4". The important thing is I got straightened out and found something better than I was about to buy from Grainger.  I can't tell you how bummed I was finding the larger shackle rated at the strength I wanted but knowing it didn't fit my bumper. I knew about McMaster but I was so whipped by the time I gave up looking I just grabbed the first thing I found (at Grainger).

I was able to cancel the Grainger order and found what I was looking for on McMasters. Enough said. Again, thanks MrBlaine for the insight into WLL and KonHd for the referral to the place I should have started looking to begin with!

I'm impressed. Those d-shackles came in one day!  I ordered them on the web site the day before at lunch time...

Painted and Installed - Click to Enlarge
Painted and Installed - Click to Enlarge
Seriously, they're perfect. So perfect in fact that I had to remove the thin coat of paint from the holes on the bumper and "blueprint" the pins before they would fit through the bumper holes.

I cleaned them up with some solvent, wiped them down and shot them with some black paint so they would not jump out at you against the rest of the Jeep, which is also black.

Then I put a wire tie through the hole on the pin and around the mount in such a way as to be unobtrusive but to prevent the pin from unscrewing.

Painted and Installed - Click to Enlarge
Not sure if that is necessary, but a couple guys I wheel with have told stories about theirs shaking loose and becoming missiles on the road...

Painted and Installed



Update 7/25/07

d-shackle dimensions

Three years to the day I am replacing one d-shackle that got lost on the trail.  I carelessly left it tightened by hand and it unscrewed and fell off.  I even knew the stretch of trail and walked it off thinking I could find it.  But since the trail is regularly traveled by all sorts of off-roaders, I am sure it was recognized for the treasure it is and was snagged.  I bought two new ones of the same type from the same source.  The price has increased but is still competitive with other sources and still has a higher working load limit than the competition.

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