Canoe & 2000 Ford Expedition
My Hexpedition's rack consists of moveable forward aft bars. There are no side rails to secure line to. Ford has a "kayak kit," and the sales literature is unclear as to the components included in the kit. Ford states the rack is made by Yakima.
My canoe is an aluminum Grumman [successor] 17-footer. I am new to canoeing.
Which rack do you folks recommend? Manufacturer? Price range? Quality reputation? Web sites?
Are tie down straps a special item?
What weight and shape anchor is best?
The least uncomfortable PFDs?
The canoe will be used on small lakes, spring creeks, and the American and Napa Rivers in Calif.
correction to above
line 1: forward aft bars should be "forward and aft bars"
If the crossbars on the rack extend wider than the canoe you don't need anything to secure from the sides. In other words you can tie a fixed loop on one end of a rope long enough to double over the canoe, slip the end of the rope under the cross-bar and over the canoe, under the far crossbar and finally thru the loop on the end of the rope, tighten, and tie a cartoppers knot. This will secure side-side.
Then do the same with the front and back and you're good to go. The idea is to secure both laterally and linearly during movement.
Generally a compress-able material between the boat and the rack will make for a more secure footing. The foam pads are a good way to go. Some guys put pipe insulation onto the rack crossbars instead.
I think the most comfortable PFD is the inflatable sospenders, you might get more opinions on that though.
Having seen far too many busted-up boats along the highways I firmly secure my canoe when traveling. Not only to the rack but also to the vehicle frame, both for and aft. Remember that a reversed canoe will cup the wind giving far more lift than a kayak.
As to PFD, none that I've encountered are comfortable in every scenerio. And the sospender type works best on the display shelf where, in my estimation, it should stay. I'm sure steelheader69 could give you the best on this.
I rolled my canoe two years ago in the river with my 13 year-old son along for the ride. Although it seemed to have happened in slow-mo there wouldn't have been enough time to activate an inflatable PFD's manual mechanism and I have little to no faith in the automatic operation (think airbag). No, the old-fashioned foam type III did just swell.
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