Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Toggle Kayak Handle Design

Let's see if I can add a couple of images.
I've designed a kayak handle that I'll make when I get some time.

Most kayak handles are one of two configurations. 1. A luggage handle loop that has two ends attached to the deck -- these are dangerous, especially in the surf.
Kayaks a long and currents or waves can swing the far end around wrenching your wrist.  2. A 'T' or short piece of PVC on a rope. These won't twist your hand, but they're usually flopped over dragging in the water, or  tucked under a deck line making them inaccessible.

The one I've designed is like the best ones available, Gnarlydog has a good blog on this subject: http://gnarlydognews.blogspot.com/search/label/grab%20handles
and lists the best ones available.

About my design:
• It sticks up making it easy to grab, it's always in same place, and because it sticks up it can be grabbed by a boat hook or lasso'd by a tossed line. Handle at bow is sideways, Aft is in-line - so it doesn't interfere with my Featherlite rudder. It'll also have to stand taller (and might incorporate a rest for the rudder blade)
• It's flexible enough to not wrench your hand. (I plan to use hydraulic hose or something similar for the 'post' so there are still some mechanical issues to sort out. )
It also has other benefits. It's open on your dominant side making it easier to slip your hand in. (on the other side it's closed,  it's still no more difficult than the T-handles. Aft: opening abaft (I didn't read all those Patrick O'Brian novels without learning a thing or two.)

Nothing attached to the deck of a kayak should be rigidly attached. I made a prominent rudder rest that someone grabbed onto and ripped a large hole out of the deck. He felt bad, but actually did me a big favor. Bad design. My kayak is a strip built wood core--so it has one of the strongest decks on any kayak-yet a little leverage... (As I was already halfway to drowning, it wasn't a problem, but on another day...... Yikes)

Feel free to comment on the design, ask questions, make a set of your own. Same rules as Linux. 
Just don't commercially crank them out and sell them. I know a lot of sea lions and orcas...if you know what I mean.... f
Let's see how the photos feature works.... (I"m hoping clicking on them will make them full size to read the notes.... if not I'll reload them into another Post)

See you on the water. 

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