Perimeter line/rope? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 07-17-2012   #1
 
riverjunky's Avatar
 
Spokane, Washington
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Perimeter line/rope?

I was looking to add a perimeter line/rope for when running whitewater with passangers in case of swim. What size and material of rope/line do you recommend or use? Thanks.

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Old 07-17-2012   #2
 
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Kalispell, Montana
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5/8" solid braid nylon is very durable, easy to hold onto when wet/panicked, and is CHEAP!
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Old 07-17-2012   #3
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Rope

I agree 5/8" is pretty ideal - much smaller can hurt your pinkies and 3/4" is hard to knot and gets bulky around the D-rings.
However, I strongly encourage you not to run the rope all the way around the raft (some on this board will probably tell you not to have any, and it can be hazardous under certain unusual situations). Best to leave the bow section "un-roped". Having rope near the front encourages people to try to climb aboard there, and if you are careening down a rocky rapid, you don't want to get a paddle droid crushed between the boat and a rock. Of course, this could happen anywhere around the perimeter depending which way the boat is angled, but injuries are more common at the bow. Plus, if they let go, they are also more likely to be run over by your raft.
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Old 07-17-2012   #4
 
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Best/safest not to have one. They are a significant additional entrapments hazard, and have been the cause for some drowning entrapments in the past. If you have some grab handles around the raft, that will suffice. If not, you can attach some short pieces of webbing or rope from your frame or d rings that hang off the outside of the tubes. They're short, about 10" more or less, with a knot at the end for your hand to grip against. Don't make them loops that hands or feet can get caught in.
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Old 07-17-2012   #5
 
Denver, Colorado
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Voting no rope. Teach proper paddling technique and how to extend reach with a paddle.
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Old 07-17-2012   #6
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I know this has been covered in previous threads but it is one of those questions that won't go away like wether to drain the cooler.

It's a great point that since it would be impossible to climb back into a raft at the bow or stern it makes sense that there is no need for a Chicken Line at either end. I have oars hanging on either side. It would seem that an oar is just as easy to hang on to as a line. Most folks would be hard pressed to climb back into a raft even with the help of a Chicken Line. I say most people because I watched my GF do it on a dare without using the Line.

With some help it's easy to get back on the boat. A shove for another swimmer or a pull from someone in the boat is all that is necessary.

I'm moving towards the NO Chicken Line crowd. That being said I have some 6 inch webbing and I'm trying to design some kind of Daisy Chain. I have some extra and I would be willing to share if someone else is interested in experimenting.
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Old 07-17-2012   #7
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This is an interesting thread and illustrates the "nver too late to learn" principal, which is a good one. The boat I have now has 1/2" tubular webbing all the way around, which has been there since 1988 (it's an Avon). I use it mostly to hang drag bags from, or when swimming/bathing along the shore, and haven't had a "swim emergency" in many years. So, I agree with the "no rope" around the bow and stern idea, because that's a silly place to try pulling someone out of the water, and I can also agree in principal with the "no rope at all" principal, if entrapment hazards are a concern, but in 30+ years of boating I think I come down on the side of rope all around. Reason: The permiter line on my boat is looped at the bow and stern, so my bow or stern line is clipped to it, and not to the single D ring there, taking all the stress off that D ring and spreading it around the boat, thereby reducing D ring failure worries. Also, really nice to have that line there when tugging the boat onto trailers, etc., and, again, for eddy swims and, finally, if the boat is, in fact, upside down, something tells me I'm going to be glad there is a safety line to grab onto anyplace, anywhere I happen to pop up. Just some thoughts.
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Old 07-17-2012   #8
 
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I have a 1/2" tubular webbing around the parameter of my raft it is tight enough that you can get a hold of it when it is wet but it is too tight when it is dry. I have thought of the entrapment issue but like it to grab it when necessary, it also helps after a flip to grab the boat quick. The key is to tie it good and snug when the raft is fully inflated and the webbing is completely soaked. Leave it attached then when inflating the raft get it wet to completely fill your raft. Another good point to bring up with your crew in your safety talk don't grab the down stream side of the raft, don't loop your hand in the chicken line, etc. The webbing stays nice and flat against the raft to lessen the chance of entrapment. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 07-17-2012   #9
 
Bozeman, Montana
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My mawma raised me on the no-rope rule.

Not having a perimeter line also discourages your crew from prematurely abandoning their paddle for the 'safety' of the chicken line. This is usually right when you need them to paddle hardest, i.e. when you T-up to punch a hole.
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Old 07-18-2012   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theBoatPeople View Post
However, I strongly encourage you not to run the rope all the way around the raft (some on this board will probably tell you not to have any, and it can be hazardous under certain unusual situations). Best to leave the bow section "un-roped". Having rope near the front encourages people to try to climb aboard there, and if you are careening down a rocky rapid, you don't want to get a paddle droid crushed between the boat and a rock.
Great advice and good rationale--thanks!



I like my perimeter lines--they're not the "be all" for getting back into the boat, but they are one part. I like to grab my line with my left hand and kick/lunge upward and grab the frame with my right and use my feet kicking and both hands on the frame to pull in from there.

A slick-sided raft when upside down doesn't have much else to hang onto. I also like the line to get on top of the flipped boat to reflip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFlophouse View Post
Not having a perimeter line also discourages your crew from prematurely abandoning their paddle for the 'safety' of the chicken line. This is usually right when you need them to paddle hardest, i.e. when you T-up to punch a hole.
That is why you as the guide also have a paddle. Thunk them on the noggin with yours if they abandon theirs! Grabbing a line on the outside of the boat doesn't help much if one wants to stay inside said boat!

I have one friend who inevitably ducks and covers on the floor of the raft whenever water gets interesting. I don't invite him much on IV anymore, and in III, his one paddle is less necessary!
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