Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I’m a frayed knot!

Bow & Stern Toggles... lifesavers or killers?

Well, even I admit that the lead sentence is a bit dramatic. But we have had a few incidents related to toggles that it seemed timely for a post.

Bow and stern toggles on sea kayaks can help us manage our boats. However, they should not be used to carry the boats... read on:

Deb and a student were test paddling my personal (and at the time, brand new) P&H Capella 167. They were walking the boat across the parking lot, a knot holding the toggle came undone, and crash went the boat, taking a chunk of fiberglass out of the keel. But it gets worse...

I previously reported that Sue broke her wrist in a freak kayak accident. She was standing on the bumper of her SueBaru, pulling a fiberglass boat by the stern toggle to reposition it in the cradles. The line holding the toggle in place was frayed, it broke un-expectantly, and Sue experienced a FWOSH! (Fall with an outstretched hand.) Sue, by the way, is just recovering from surgery and could use some good wishes... send them to

We all have our terrible toggle stories to tell. The moral of the story is to carry sea kayaks with a hand cradling the bow or stern, and inspect the toggles periodically to ensure that the lines are not showing signs of wear. One more related story...

The string went into the bar, hopped up on a barstool, and asked the bartender for a beer. The bartender shouted “Get out -- we don’t serve strings in here!” The string went into the alley next to the bar, and just went nuts: Thrashing against the wall, the ground, wiggling around in a crazed manner. Can you picture it? Then the string went back into the bar, hopped up on the very same stool, and asked for a beer. The bartender shouted “Didn’t I just tell you we don't serve strings in here?!” To which the string replied — “I’m a frayed knot.”

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