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Old 04-23-2010   #1
Avon, Connecticut
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 12
Raft carry handle modifications

I've got an older Hyside self bailer which is a great raft with crappy carry handles. They are made from 2 pieces of nylon webbing sewn together and glued to a hypalon patch. The webbing is stiff and the edge of it tends to cut into your hand. They are very uncomfortable when carrying the boat any more than a short distance.

I was thinking of cutting some tubing lengthwise to slip over the webbing. Has anyone tried this? Did you use rubber tubing or plastic? What diameter? Did you glue the tubing back together?

Is there something besides tubing that would work? I'd love to hear any ideas you guys have.

I'd rather not have to remove and reglue new handles, but maybe it will come to that. I've seen some nice handles on newer boats, just don't want to spend too much $$ right now on a new set of raft handles (married, you know how that goes.....).


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Old 04-24-2010   #2
earthNRG's Avatar
Snowmass, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 429
How about some foam pipe insulation, then wrap it in duct tape? Cheap and easy, but kinda ugly even when done well. I think plastic tubing would also be a good idea, but I would definately weld the seam you'll have to cut to get it on. I've seen aftermarket handles like this, but am having trouble remembering where...

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Old 04-24-2010   #3
SE, Tennessee
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 28
Garden hose. Slit them, slide over, then glue them back.
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Old 04-25-2010   #4
Canon City, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 426
Be careful about leaving hose on the handles. It can cause the handles to not dry out completely, leading to rotting of your boat if you roll it up with webbing still wet. Consider using garden hose, as smallie suggested, without gluing them back together. Pull the hose off the handles before drying, or after you carry the boat to the river and stick 'em in your strap bag.
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Old 04-26-2010   #5
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Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 683
gloves, 2 pairs
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