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Has anybody ever tied webbing loops or laced webbing on underside of their raft, as something to grab onto when trying to get onto upside down boat? I recently heard about this idea. I can think of a couple ways to do it to keep the webbing snug and reduce chance of snagging something, but then it would be harder to grab onto. Interested in peoples' thoughts....
 

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I've tied some small, cheap rope (strength of around 200 lbs) so that it might break in a really bad snag. not sure if my logic is unassailable though. I don't like the idea of webbing as it would never break in a snag - you'd have to cut it. I'm interested in people's thoughts on this as well.
 

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I've seen it done but typically on big water rivers where snags are far less likely. Wouldn't try it on a bony run myself. A 1" webbing tied through floor holes and pretty snug seems to work...
I tend to run more technical rivers and have flipped enough boats that the extra boost is unnecessary but would consider it on a solo big water mission. but again, I 'practice' getting onto flipped rafts often enough for the risk to outweigh the benefits.
 

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I use flip lines. I put one on each side of the raft. You can easily toss one over to the other side and pull yourself up or quickly tie a loop in the line and use it like a stirrup to get on top of your boat. I've also used 3 feet of webbing w/ carbineers on each end that you keep in your pfd pockets. they can be attached to a D ring to get a foot step up to your boat.

NRS Flip Lines (Pair) at nrs.com
 

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I use flip lines. I put one on each side of the raft. You can easily toss one over to the other side and pull yourself up or quickly tie a loop in the line and use it like a stirrup to get on top of your boat. I've also used 3 feet of webbing w/ carbineers on each end that you keep in your pfd pockets. they can be attached to a D ring to get a foot step up to your boat.
I have those as well, and I also carry a flip line made of webbing and a locking carabiner on me at all times. I don't always take the NRS flip lines (easier floats, lightly loaded boats), but I do always carry the one on my person. I do that for two reasons:

1) to have a flip line for my own boat in the event I don't have the NRS flip lines and it's also an extra even if I do for heavy boats.

2) to have a flip line to help someone else that may not have one or that may need an extra one.

While I have seen the strap run under the raft, I don't think I would ever do that myself. Practice getting back on top of the boat without it on those hot desert floats over the summer so you won't need it!
 

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I have flipped a few times now and usually have little trouble pulling myself on top of the bottom of my boat. My last Grand trip I flipped in lava and it took a few tries to get up. I thought about a loop attached to my frame to get purchase for my foot. Basically a daisy chained piece of webbing with a loop at the end large enough for my foot. It doesn't come up too often but when it just happens you put some thought to it. I don't like the idea of a strap under the boat. The thought of it catching on something makes me very uncomfortable. I would rather just do a little flat water practice to strengthen the right muscles.
 

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We ran a loop of 3/8 webbing through the drain holes about a foot apart on each side of all the boats a few years ago. We did it in anticipation of high water and lots of carnage on the Ark. We left em on the boats all season, through royal gorge low water and never had a problem. This was on glued in floors. Now, with the new sotars with laced in floors, they're easy enough to get onto that it's a non-issue.
 

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I rig my boat with a cam strap laced in the first set of bailing holes in the bow and stern for this purpose. I have never had it catch on anything and I run boney runs all summer long (North Santiam, Hood, Klickitat, Clackamas etc..).

I learned to do this from a number of outfitters on the White Salmon that do it (Wet Planet chief among them). They run hundreds of trips a year on class III-V water with low water, rocks, Sticks, Logs - you name it. If they had issues with it, it wouldn't be done any longer.

They also run additional straps in the area between thwarts that act as grab lines for when they are running Husum - these also go under the floor, but they do remove these when Husum is not being commercially run. These also don't seem to get caught on anything. I know that they DO keep them tightened down VERY tight, and they inflate their boats rock hard, this probably keeps them from having much opportunity to snag.
 

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I run an Aire Super Puma. The lace in floor can be a pain to crawl on top of when you are trying from the sides of the boat. I have a lateral piece of webbing that is super tight across the bottom. It has never snagged on anything and has been there for 4 or five seasons. The front and back are closer to the water and the webbing is spaced far enough apart to get your fingers in. I run 6 foot straps as tag lines fore and aft. I was wary the first season, as I did not want it to "snag" on anything. It has never been an issue on small or large volume water.
Have also run straps through the drain holes on a mini maxx alternating holes on the same side of the boat. These do not cross the bottom of the boat.(down, skip one, up, down, skip one, up, back to buckle) The issue is that on a punched floor boat, the webbing held more water in the boat (slower drain).
 

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Has anybody ever tied webbing loops or laced webbing on underside of their raft, as something to grab onto when trying to get onto upside down boat? I recently heard about this idea. I can think of a couple ways to do it to keep the webbing snug and reduce chance of snagging something, but then it would be harder to grab onto. Interested in peoples' thoughts....
Using a piece of webbing or two (mine are 2.5' long) pushed down through the floor lacing or drain holes near the ends of the boat can aid in climbing onto an overturned raft. A knot at the end keeps the strap from pulling through the lacing, and a small knot 4 or 5 inches below the large knot keeps the strap from falling out when the boat is inverted.
You can easily move this from boat to boat, and so far I've never had it hang up on anything.
 

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A bit different but Tributary Tomcats have a seat strap that goes under the boat. Very very useful for rolling a boat back over quickly. If I had another brand I think I would add a strap to roll a loaded boat mid river.
I have never noticed the strap hanging up on anything so I would guess it would work on a raft too for a way to get up.
 

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Folks have been doing this for my entire rafting experience-26 years or so, and I've never heard of any problems. I've only ran catarafts until the last 5 years and have never tried this personally.

I used to strap a paddle under my cat next to the frame where it met the tube in case of a flip to self rescue in case of a flip and ended up never needing it...this was on solo trips for the most part. It did give me more peace of mind when I solo floated westwater and other runs in the winter and off season months.


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Used to do this with my Puma and that was my flip line. I flipped that boat often and the lines worked great. Also never had a hang up. I would do it again without any hesitation.


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I have a short length, (18") of strap hanging out of the bottom of the boat amidships on both sides of the floor to grab onto for quickly mounting the boat after a flip. The flip strap is in a pocket on my PFD.
 

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I like the sound of your method Fishnfowler. I think on bigger boats adding another so there would always be one close by would help. Also on continuos rockered boats the ends are the easiest spots to climb up. So having straps at the end would be a help.


Jim
 

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I ran a commercial trip on the Zambezi years ago. They kept a flip line across the bottom of every boat (very deep water). They were certainly used on our trip, and with crocs sunning on the shore, I was delighted at how fast the skinny guide got the raft upright after we went airborne in Stairway to Heaven..
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I run an Aire Super Puma. The lace in floor can be a pain to crawl on top of when you are trying from the sides of the boat. I have a lateral piece of webbing that is super tight across the bottom. It has never snagged on anything and has been there for 4 or five seasons. The front and back are closer to the water and the webbing is spaced far enough apart to get your fingers in. I run 6 foot straps as tag lines fore and aft. I was wary the first season, as I did not want it to "snag" on anything. It has never been an issue on small or large volume water.
Have also run straps through the drain holes on a mini maxx alternating holes on the same side of the boat. These do not cross the bottom of the boat.(down, skip one, up, down, skip one, up, back to buckle) The issue is that on a punched floor boat, the webbing held more water in the boat (slower drain).
Yes, a friend told me about running a single piece of webbing in and out of the drain holes like that. Seems to me that it could definitely slow down draining.
 

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Avon bucket boats on the Zambezi in the late 80's. Nothing to grab on the floor so we had two lines running across the bottom. Big water, so not much chance of snagging anything. Good chance you would end up upside down so the benefit was worth it. My personal rate was one flip every five days worked. In Cali, one of our guides would run a strap tight across the floor, (laces to laces) about a foot from the ends of the boat. He just wanted to have something easy to grab if needed on class V.

If you are running something where the possibilities of a flip are high, it would be worth it. Otherwise the fewer lines I have hanging around to catch things, the better.
 
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