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Scott M

Transporting Canoe Options

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Borrowed a friend's canoe last year and hauled it on my truck with the foam style blocks on the gunnels and ratchet straps on the ends. I make one trip a year with a canoe. I was looking to buy my own set of foam blocks but I was wondering if anyone has a better way? I came home in some super strong wind and had to readjust the rig coming down I35. It was a white knuckle ride from Duluth to Hinckley as gusts of wind came out of nowhere.

Now, factoring in that those kind of winds are really rare, that I only make 1 trip a year, and that I'm probably selling the truck inside of two years, is there a reason to go to racks? Other options?

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You're hauling in a truck?

Check out "Darby Extend-A-Truck Racks" as a second option though. They're not terribly expensive either.

DTA944-968-924_1000.jpg

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If you're not feelin the rack and looking for an alternative to the blocks, my buddy used to use foam noodles. He was comfortable enough to do that on his BMW so you ought to be able to make it work.

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Well, the nice thing about the rack is that they are transferable to other cars. Just buy the clips for the new car and you're good to go. They will likely be your most stable option (depending on the car they are attached to).

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"the foam style blocks on the gunnels and ratchet straps on the ends."

I do ratchet straps over the foam blocks also. (one side of vehicle to other side) smile

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Foam blocks are pretty cheap and they work well.

I've also used foam pipe insulation.

+1 on a ratchet strap over the top. That helps with cross wind.

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I'm not sure what the canoe is made out of, but if you have a kevlar canoe, make sure that you don't go nuts on the ratchet straps. You can break the canoe that way.

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When you tie your canoe to the front and rear, it really helps to have two lines on each end forming an "V" shape. It will really help keep your boat from whipping side to side.

I recently discovered Thule Loop Straps. They look ideal for my use because I don't like the bow lines rubbing on my SUV front end when tying under the bumper. Plus they allow you to easily use two lines front & two lines rear.

Here is a good You-Tube video that shows them in use. You will notice that he only has one line to the front and one to the back, but you definitely want two on each end forming the "V".

Check out the video:

Google Thule 529 & Thule 530 to see the two different models. One attaches under your hood to an existing bolt, the other gets pinched under the hood. - Good luck

full-1166-31534-canoe_on_car.jpg

full-1166-31536-thule_hood_loop_strap.jp

full-1166-31537-thule_quick_loop_strap_1

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Thanks for all the great tips. The truck has a topper, so the foam blocks have worked well. I did attach in a "v" formation to my front tow hooks.

Sounds like I should stick to the foam blocks.

Good tip on the kevlar over-ratcheting.

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In general you shouldn't ratchet at all on the bow or stern. Those lines are for security, not for securing.

As a way to secure something, trying to get control of it by pulling from one end or the other is very unstable and you are pulling down on a point that isn't supported by the blocks.

The main securing straps should be over the foam blocks are over the main body of the canoe at best. you should be able to rock the entire vehicle when tied down that way without the boat moving. The bow and stern lines are only meant to keep your canoe from flying away in case of some other failure. They provide stability, but should not be what secures the boat.

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