Author Topic: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.  (Read 8098 times)

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Offline WI_Woodsman

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Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« on: April 04, 2015, 10:22:14 PM »
My current painter line was foolishly attached to the nylon hand grip on the stern deck plate which is only held on the by a few rivets.  I'm now realizing the current attachment point of my painter line is not sufficiently strong enough to hold in an emergency situation such as towing.

My plan is to drill a hole into the hull of the stern and tie a rope through but before I begin this endeavor I'm not sure where would be the most optimum location for the hole.  Should it be close to the water line?  How far back from the edge should I drill?  Are after market products (such as TUGEYEs) a wast of money?  Or is there a budget hack you guys know of that similar or better?  The current length of my painter is about half the length of my canoe (about 7 feet) should I make it longer and why?  Should I consider a second painter line in the bow?   

Anyone have any suggestions?
« Last Edit: April 04, 2015, 10:53:18 PM by WI_Woodsman »

Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2015, 10:32:29 PM »
I will try to answer some of your questions tomorrow, Wi-Woods......it's too late for me to peck it out tonight, but I do have a few suggestions for you to consider.   Be back tomorrow & Happy Easter!
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Offline greyhound352

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2015, 05:22:11 AM »
I know Wolfy will load you up with some good advice on attachment points and hardware.

I would like to add that I like 15 to 20 feet length for painter lines. On our Suwannee River trip last year we had to portage around the rapids and put in on a rocky shoreline that wad still had some currents. The longer painter lines allowed us to hold the other guys canoe until they were ready to launch.


« Last Edit: April 05, 2015, 06:12:17 AM by greyhound352 »
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Offline WI_Woodsman

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2015, 07:34:34 AM »
Thanks Greyhound,

I need as much advise as I can get because I'm going to be DRILLING into the hull of my canoe and that makes me a bit nervous.  I knew the Krac's would have some good insight the image was helpful GH!  What is your hull made of and how are your lines attached GH?

Offline MnSportsman

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2015, 08:04:11 AM »
   When we towed a canoe holding our decoys & occasionally an extra dog, we just took a 50 foot (3/8) or so long rope, tied one end around the front seat or the fwd thwart on one side did the same on the other side of the canoe with the other end of the rope, then pulled the rope together so that it was just fwd of the bow & tied an overhand knot in the doubled over rope, (maybe a foot or less from the bow on the outside), leaving a big loop that was about 20 or so foot long doubled over loop to attach to the towing boat, or be held by the feller in the stern running the motor. I usually just held the rope in one hand & the tiller in the other, when operating. When we were done using it that way, we just untied the rope.


I hope I explained that well enough.. :shrug:



   That is how "we" did it, anyway. Didn't need to drill any holes that way.


Well, I hope that might help in some way.
 :)


  ETA - In case of traversing shallows/rapids keeping the canoe in the water, rather than portage, we usually tied the ends of the rope we used one end to the front thwart & the other to the rear thwart, both on same side, making a big loop fwd to aft, & "walked" the canoe up or down stream. I think there is a name for the technique but I can't recall it.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2015, 08:09:31 AM by MnSportsman »
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Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2015, 09:18:56 AM »
Good and useful tips from two of my web-footed friends, but as you can imagine, I have some more that you may, or may not, find useful. ;D

The technique for guiding a canoe through the rapids from the  shoreline via the painter lines, that greyhound pictured & MnS was trying to recall the name for, is called 'lining'.......best practiced at home before you try it with a fully-laden boat on a week-long trip, I found out. :-[     It works quite well, but there IS a learning curve! ;D   It requires painter lines that are around 20-25' in length like greyhound suggests.  I like to keep mine coiled under a short length of bungee cord, knotted on each end & stretched between two holes drilled side by side in the forward and stern decks. 

The placement of the attachment points at the stem and stern is best if kept as close to the waterline as possible for the best stability in towing or lining.  For a good reference, check out a picture of the placement of Grumman's excellent pin & clevis arrangement. :thumbsup:   They got it right, and it's a good method to copy when doing yours, even if it is not an aluminum canoe. 

A good way to make your holes in the stem and stern is to drill them a bit oversized and line them.....like you would in making a thong-hole liner in a knife handle.  Plan on making room for a 3/8" or 1/2" painter line and size the hole accordingly.  With the decks removed, install your liners snugly and flush with the hull's exterior surfaces and glue in place.  Then apply epoxy putty or plain old automotive body-shop bondo to the inside of the hull between the liner material and the stern and stem bands to add backup strength to the strain points.

That's the way I do it anyway. :shrug: :popcorn:

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Offline WI_Woodsman

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2015, 12:03:47 PM »
Pin & clevis arrangement sounds interesting but my canoe is made of  thermoformed polyethylene it seems to me the hole in the hull would grow larger in time with the rubbing of the metal...

Thanks for the insight guys!

Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2015, 12:29:09 PM »
Hence, the need for the hole's 'liner,' where any negligible wear would occur. 8)
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Offline greyhound352

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2015, 03:28:36 AM »
Thanks Greyhound,

I need as much advise as I can get because I'm going to be DRILLING into the hull of my canoe and that makes me a bit nervous.  I knew the Krac's would have some good insight the image was helpful GH!  What is your hull made of and how are your lines attached GH?

This is Acara boat and I don't remember where his lines were secured to his boat. On my Pack canoe there are heavy duty molded plastic handles on each end and that is where my lines are secured to. These lines are also my tie downs in my truck.
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Offline acara

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2015, 05:33:06 AM »
There may be an existing pass-through bolt (horizontal) on your bow & if so, it's just a matter of changing out the hardware to allow multiple connection points (anchor, lead & painter), or a single "bull ring". If not, I'll get a picture of my set-up. The rear attachment point usually has to be fabricated/installed, unless you have a square-back with a factory motor-mount plate.

Also, I've  found it easier to use hardware attached to a base plate when using load-bearing penetrations. It sounds counter-intuitive to make 4 holes instead of one, but pressure = force/area, so you actually have much lower load/point stress on the individual penetrations.

I also use liners/gasket on both faces of the base plates (main & mating-plate on the underside), to minimize damage/stress to the actual hull material. Also, I typically use a sleeve for penetrations, or simply RTV the hole at time of installation to prevent the threads on the fastener from enlarging the hole over time (it's a good practice to RTV/seal any penetration anyways).

As far as the painter line length ... both should be at least as long as the vessel (IMHO) & should have pre-braided handles/ends....or finish/stopper knots (sucks having a wet line slip out of your hands). I use a separate line for towing with a pre-installed stainless spring clip on both ends.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2015, 05:42:46 AM by acara »
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Offline zammer

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2015, 09:23:01 AM »
Question from the peanut gallery..... why are they called Painter lines  ???
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Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2015, 09:38:32 AM »
It's an unsolvable mystery, I guess. :shrug:

Here's an interesting and useful article, though.....

http://www.paddling.net/sameboat/archives/sameboat680.html
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Offline zammer

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2015, 02:15:51 PM »
It's an unsolvable mystery, I guess. :shrug:

Here's an interesting and useful article, though.....

http://www.paddling.net/sameboat/archives/sameboat680.html

Interesting article wolfy, although it sadly does not as you say...solve the "unsolvable mystery" 
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Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2015, 04:32:54 PM »
I don't know why I didn't think of it before, but if you don't want to drill holes in your hull at ALL, there is yet another, and probably even better, way to attach a towline or painter that you intend to use for lining up or down a set of rapids.   It's called a 'BRIDLE' and I remember seeing it in either Bill Riviere's book, POLE, PADDLE & PORTAGE or one of Bill Mason's books or videos......can't remember.  ???     I DO know, however, that it was Mason's preferred method for attaching a painter that was intended to be used for lining in rapids!  He claimed best control in swift water when using the lowest possible painter attachment point possible.....and you can't get much lower than the underneath side of the hull!

Very simply, it is nothing more than a separate, 8' or 9' piece of line that has a small Alpine Butterfly knot-loop tied in its middle.   It is centered underneath and across the bottom of the hull at either, or both of the seat positions.  The ends of the Bridle are then secured to the seat supports on each side with Clove Hitches, a Round Turn & Two Half-Hitches, Slippery Buntline Hitch.....or whatever knot you prefer.   Then the painter is secured to the loop in the middle of the 'Bridle' via a Bowline.    Now you can begin your tow or 'lining' operation with the pull on the hull being applied to the most stable point, the bottom!   Tipping the boat by pulling from a higher & less stable position on the stem or stern is avoided, no holes need to be drilled in the hull and both painter/bridle combinations can be quickly removed after the towing/lining job is completed by simply pulling the tails of the 4 quick-release knots on the seat supports.  That's it....simple! :thumbsup:
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« Last Edit: April 06, 2015, 04:38:11 PM by wolfy »
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Offline WI_Woodsman

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #14 on: April 07, 2015, 03:32:08 PM »
There may be an existing pass-through bolt (horizontal) on your bow & if so, it's just a matter of changing out the hardware to allow multiple connection points (anchor, lead & painter), or a single "bull ring". If not, I'll get a picture of my set-up. The rear attachment point usually has to be fabricated/installed, unless you have a square-back with a factory motor-mount plate.

Also, I've  found it easier to use hardware attached to a base plate when using load-bearing penetrations. It sounds counter-intuitive to make 4 holes instead of one, but pressure = force/area, so you actually have much lower load/point stress on the individual penetrations.

I also use liners/gasket on both faces of the base plates (main & mating-plate on the underside), to minimize damage/stress to the actual hull material. Also, I typically use a sleeve for penetrations, or simply RTV the hole at time of installation to prevent the threads on the fastener from enlarging the hole over time (it's a good practice to RTV/seal any penetration anyways).

As far as the painter line length ... both should be at least as long as the vessel (IMHO) & should have pre-braided handles/ends....or finish/stopper knots (sucks having a wet line slip out of your hands). I use a separate line for towing with a pre-installed stainless spring clip on both ends.


"Multiple connection points" sounds interesting I would love to see a photo Acara!

Hey Wolfy, the bridal is another interesting option and you're right, you can't get much lower than the underneath side of the hull, lol!

Offline MnSportsman

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #15 on: April 07, 2015, 03:42:43 PM »
  When you are "lining" I would think that the level "You" are at, as compared to the canoe, might make a person want to adjust that line(s) based on your elevation. Imagine "lining" from a bank higher than the canoe. Then you may want those lines up higher to not upset the canoe... Just something to ponder on, anyway.


     I only recall just tying the way I mentioned before to pull the canoe upstream when needed, so I never have tried it with the line underneath the canoe before. Got me thinking about it now though, as canoeing season for us up here is about to begin. I may just do a bit of experimenting just for fun.
:)

I love being out in the woods!   I like this quote from Mors Kochanski - "The more you know, the less you carry". I believe in the same creed, & think  "Knowledge & honed skills" are the best things to carry with ya when you're out in the wilds. They're the ultimate "ultralight" gear! ;)

Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #16 on: April 07, 2015, 04:30:35 PM »
At first glance, and when lining from above on a high bank, it would seem that lines attached attached at a higher point on the hull would give more stability, but in actual practice, not so much! ???     That is why Bill Mason went to the 'bridle' or harness for lining rough rapids and swift currents.  The pull from beneath the hull lifts it and adds an unbelievable amount of control to the process over any other attachment point.  I didn't believe it either.....until I actually went to the trouble of making up a pair of 'bridles' and using them.  When hooked up that way, you can control the two long painter lines almost like a kite-flyer would to fly those fancy kites.  Instead of tipping, yawing and diving, the pitch of the boat to the river currents moves it by 'ferrying' techniques......lik e those used by any skilled swift water canoe paddler when back paddling in rapids or upstream ferrying in swift water to move from one side to another .  I practiced with my empty 18 1/2'  'tripper' at the ends of wing-dikes on the Missouri River......good place to practice entering from a downstream back-eddy, crossing the line of swift water coming downstream, then up and around to calmer waters on the upstream side of the dike.  Like any new skill, it takes practice before you have to rely on it on a trip, or SHOULD have.......experien ce speaking here, now.  :doh: :lol:
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Offline WI_Woodsman

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #17 on: April 07, 2015, 05:24:57 PM »
  When you are "lining" I would think that the level "You" are at, as compared to the canoe, might make a person want to adjust that line(s) based on your elevation. Imagine "lining" from a bank higher than the canoe. Then you may want those lines up higher to not upset the canoe... Just something to ponder on, anyway.


     I only recall just tying the way I mentioned before to pull the canoe upstream when needed, so I never have tried it with the line underneath the canoe before. Got me thinking about it now though, as canoeing season for us up here is about to begin. I may just do a bit of experimenting just for fun.
:)

On that line of thinking (pun intended) I wonder if it matters how loaded down your canoe is, I paddle firewood in which causes my canoe to ride very low in the water...


Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #18 on: April 07, 2015, 06:03:06 PM »
My turn for a question & then I'm done:  If you were given a length of rope, and your job was to attach it to a heavy refrigerator and pull it toward you from across the room......would you attach that rope to the bottom or the top of the refrigerator to achieve the desired outcome? :doh:
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Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2015, 03:18:27 PM »
This thread has died, but I thought it was worth my time to add this page, found just this afternoon, to illustrate what I have, so feebly, been trying to describe....

http://paddlemaking.blogspot.com/2014/12/canoe-paddle-bridle-lining-method-pic.html   

It WORKS! :thumbsup:

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Offline greyhound352

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #20 on: May 18, 2015, 03:58:25 PM »
Thanks for sharing Wolfy,  haven't seen that method before but it makes perfect sense.

Just like in your previous post the question about the frig, it would be the same as here from the bottom.
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Offline wolfy

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #21 on: May 18, 2015, 04:12:29 PM »
Well, one thing it proves is that a picture really IS worth a thousand words! :rofl: :cheers:
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Offline MnSportsman

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #22 on: May 18, 2015, 06:42:03 PM »

Thanks for the link, Wolfy!
:thumbsup:

   Which reminds me that I have a paddle making video to finish. ;)

I love being out in the woods!   I like this quote from Mors Kochanski - "The more you know, the less you carry". I believe in the same creed, & think  "Knowledge & honed skills" are the best things to carry with ya when you're out in the wilds. They're the ultimate "ultralight" gear! ;)

Offline xj35s

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Re: Advise Needed: Painter Lines For Canoes.
« Reply #23 on: June 22, 2015, 04:09:56 PM »
And I thought this thread was about painting the waterline on the outside of the canoe...I should read new posts more often. I am always learning how much I don't know.

« Last Edit: June 22, 2015, 04:19:49 PM by xj35s »
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