Waist Tow Recommendations ?

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Daker
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Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by Daker » Wed Jun 27, 2018 5:04 pm

Looking for any recommendations on an off-the-shelf waist tow system please as this is as a present for someone and I'm a bit out of touch with what's on the market.

I personally have one of the older style (red) Peak ones which I quite like - easy to use, large enough to be easy to repack, all fittings are stainless steel, comes with Velcro for a deck mounting (or storing) option. My only slight criticism is that its quite a large bag but that's the trade-off with being easy to re-pack.

The current (blue) Peak ones appear the same al be it the crab is plastic which wouldn't be my personal choice but I presume has been proven to be up to the job and a lot lighter

So, any others that folk like / would recommend please ?

I'm not interested in any DIY versions nor (only) deck mounted ones, thank you.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by pugwash » Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:46 am

Most of the time I use a HF throw tow, never had to throw it in anger, it works great as a waist mounted tow though. Also got a couple of the Palm tows, and these are OK as well and get well used on club nights, top opening pouch is easier to repack than traditional bag.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by andynormancx » Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:08 am

There are still some of the old red ones around:

http://www.upandunder.co.uk/Watersports ... e---13624/

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PeterG
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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by PeterG » Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:19 am

I really like the 'bulldog' plastic clips. The force need to break one would be far above towing forces. Although I might not like to be lowered down a cliff on one I suppose

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by Daker » Thu Jun 28, 2018 12:07 pm

Thanks for the comments.

I looked at the HF one but its not really what I need in this case. Although I actually made something very similar myself years ago but found I never really needed the throw option so went back to a standard waist system for the vast majority of my paddling.

Good to hear that plastic clip is up to the job as that was my concern and would have been a bit peeved if I had to spend another tenner to buy a SS clip instead.

Cheers guys.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by seawolf856 » Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:21 pm

The Palm Ocean Pro 10m is my tow line of choice. I prefer the 'feel' of a waist towline rather than a 'throw bag' type or a boat mounted type and a towline worn on the person can be used for clipping the boat to your person as a precaution if conditions get tasty or if you capsize and need to stay in touch with a boat in rough seas. The pack size is quite compact and padded so it is very comfortable to wear around the waist below your PFD. The quick release toggle is massive and easy to find even with gloves on. Like all tow lines, repacking is the main issue and the Ocean Pro is no different. Having said that, the lid is the full width of the pouch and is fastened with velcro so it is not as difficult to repack as some tow line bags with zips, clips and draw cords. I actually like the plastic 'sea dog' clip but I know some of my paddling buddies who also use the Ocean Pro, have replaced the plastic clip with a more conventional carabiner. Although the Ocean Pro has many good features is not faultless and after a few uses and practice sessions, a couple of us have carried out some modifications.
When you buy it, the ends of the rope are tied with normal figure of 8 knots which is quite large and leaves a short tail of rope, this can snag deck lines when unclipping from a tow and trying to pull the line free. We have replaced the knot with a stainless steel crimp closed tight with pliers and then heat shrink covered - this now presents no snags whatsoever. Also there is a 'shock absorber section in the line, which is at the clip end of the tow line when you get it. This will not pass under deck lines very easily so we decided to swap the rope round and put the shock length at the pouch end of the line, leaving the front end of the tow line completely free of snag hazards.
I know there are plenty of off the shelf designs out there and buying one as a present could be quite a minefield as people tend to like different designs for different reasons. You are going to spend a decent amount of cash for a present (the Ocean Pro is about £50) so if your friend has already used a waist tow, then I'd stick with that. If they have never owned a tow line before, talk to them (at the risk of ruining the surprise) to see if they have a preference.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by Daker » Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:53 pm

Many thanks for the comments, I'll have a look at the Palm one also.

Like you, I find that I have to make minor tweaks to the way a line is set up by the manufacturer - for example some come with a piece of bungee cord with the line simply tied to the end of that, meaning the bungee is always taking the load. I'm not keen on that so always put a loose link on the main rope back to the end fixing point so, should the bungee ever break, there is a fail-safe solid link.

The present is as a replacement for a very old and small (but extremely difficult to repack) waist tow, so no worries there. :-)

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by mcgruff » Thu Jun 28, 2018 5:13 pm

Extremtextil is a good place to buy outdoors materials. Dyneema floats and is very light & strong - so you can often choose a smaller size which packs down well. I'd guess the worst case shock load shouldn't be more than x2 or x3 the weight of paddler & boat? The daN values given are roughly half the breaking strength in pounds so the 2.5mm has a breaking strength of around 1,000lbs. The 1.5mm is around 500lbs. You lose some strength in a knot - eyes spliced in the ends are stronger (although the 1.5 may be too small for that).

Dyneema has very little stretch. I know next to nothing about towing kayaks but I wonder if low stretch might actually work better? It would certainly give you more feedback. A more elastic line might waste a lot of energy?

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by Northern Blue » Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:15 pm

I recently upgraded to a 14 metre Whetman system which I've only used in a couple of practice sessions.

It's quite a large bag, which makes repacking easy, but it's very comfortable to wear and I forget it's there most of the time. It's very well constructed, with quality fittings and as well as the main 14 metre tow, there is a short tow set up from the bottom of the bag.

https://www.whetmanequipment.com/sea-guide-towline.html

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by sloegin » Tue Jul 03, 2018 9:30 pm

I use the Howard Jeffs Sea Kayak Tow Line

https://www.howardjeffs.com/shop/access ... -tow-line/

There has been a further batch manufactured since I got mine but I'd say all in all its a top piece of kit. Its very well though out in terms of the 'clean line' principle, the way everything is protected and smoothed over is excellent. The only thing I would say is that it is quite large, its a perfect size/fit for me at 6ft 1 and 97kg but my 5ft 6 partner finds it a bit too wide.
Ive owned and used a throw tow, all of the Peak variations, the Palm ones and tried out the Whetman kit and I still choose the Howard Jeffs every day.
North shore Ocean 17.6

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by JulesT » Fri Jul 27, 2018 8:21 pm

Jules

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by on the rocks » Fri Aug 30, 2019 12:18 pm

I've just upgraded from my Peak towline to a Whetman Sea bean elite with 14m line. Last time out working on incident managent the plastic D ring used to stash the plastic karabiner on the Peak towline broke into pieces. Then after practising a re-entry roll I found the now free plastic karabiner had clipped itself to my seat elastic - just as well I didn't capsize again before I tried to get the deck on.

The Sea bean seems to be a good piece of kit with its clean lines (no float) stainless steel Kraken karabiner, stainless D rings, bungee shock absorber and small pack size. However I did transfer the stainless daisy-chain clip from the old Peak tow line so I can keep the line shortened to around 8m when I don't need the full 14m for rougher conditions

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by EdSmith » Fri Aug 30, 2019 3:10 pm

With regard to very thin diameters suggested above. The tow line equivalent of a cheese wire or gorotte, should the tow go wrong and the line get tangled around or across limbs or flesh.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by TheEcho » Fri Aug 30, 2019 4:15 pm

mcgruff wrote:
Thu Jun 28, 2018 5:13 pm
Dyneema has very little stretch. I know next to nothing about towing kayaks but I wonder if low stretch might actually work better? It would certainly give you more feedback. A more elastic line might waste a lot of energy?
I think a bit of elasticity is good as there can be quite a bit of snatch when the line suddenly goes taut in surf. Who wants to be cut in half?

I don’t rate the plastic carabiner discussed above as I have mild Reynaud’s syndrome which makes my hands clumsy in the cold, and it needs a fair bit of force to open. I have replaced it with a Kraken carabiner and float (to stop the metal carabiner sinking) which has much better handling, so it is now almost perfect for me, but I had to extend the bag closure with some Velcro to get it all to fit in the bag.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by Northern Blue » Sun Sep 01, 2019 9:32 am

I upgraded from a Palm tow line to one of the Whetmans last year and used it loads on practice sessions. It’s a superb bit of kit, with a short tow built in too.

I don’t mind the size of the bag, which some complain is a bit intrusive as it’s on the large side, but this helps with repacking. I’ve heard that the latest offerings from Whetman have addressed this and are more compact.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by The Shiner » Sun Sep 01, 2019 9:45 pm

North Water Dynamic pro, easy to use, easy to pack.

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by Jonny Hightower » Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:34 pm

I recently bought a Whetman Sea Bean (10M version) and took it out on a paddle yesterday morning for the first time. After a few hours, one of our number became ill through heat exhaustion. We had to tow him to the closest beach which, having a lifeguard station, allowed us to leave him in the shade with them while we headed back for the cars to pick him up. It turned out that, for various reasons, I was the only one in the group with a towline. The Sea Bean was brilliant for the 2 hours it was in use. It was very easy to simply reach behind for the karabiner, clip to the casualty's kayak and start the tow quickly (we started the tow when he was first showing symptoms so he was able to support himself). When I got tired, the quick release allowed me to pass it to other members of the group for me to have a break (they found it easy to put on too). We used it in a V-tow configuration for a while and it was plenty long enough for that, and when it was no longer needed it re-packed easily too. Needless to say I was very, very glad I'd bought it, because a contact tow would have been significantly more difficult. I'm very happy with my Sea Bean (and so is the casualty).

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Re: Waist Tow Recommendations ?

Post by Dave Gorman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:13 pm

Palm Ocean Pro for me. Same reasons as very well explained by Seawolf, and same minor alterations. ⚓🙂

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