Bow/Stern lines?

I'm using Thule racks on the top of a Chevy Tahoe and am wondering if I really need to use bow/stern lines. I have one boat on a Hulaport and one on a Rollercoaster/set-to-go setup.

These racks seem to hold the boats exceptionally well. I don't travel very far with them and really would rather not have a rope rubbing across the hood of my Tahoe.

Any opinions on the neccessity of these additional anchors?

Oh Wait, Wrong forum…

In my personal use, I rarely use them. While using my truck, I have a heavy duty rack system that I trust. It is 1.5 inch tubular steel. I normaly double up on straps if it is a long trip and I am a habitual strap checker.

On our jeeps yakama rack, after I securly strap the boats to the rack, I always use a second set of straps that go to the factory rack on the Jeeps roof. My reasoning is that if I were to have a failure, it would take many parts breaking at the same time to result in a catastophic failure or the boat being released from my roof. Besides, if they can break a 1 inch nylon strap, 1/4 inch rope tied to the grab loop is going to fail as well.

BUT, I have in the past used them. just depends. If you do not want a strap rubbing your paint, you can use a flat, tubular peice of webbing and secure it under the edge of your hood using a body screw. When not in use just lay it flat and close the hood.



Bow/Stern tiedowns

– Last Updated: May-30-04 7:08 PM EST –

By all means, I recommend using them. Just really look at the attachment points of these racks to the car. Really look! I sell Thule and I'm always flabberghasted why people really trust these racks (and Yakimas, etc.) with the lives of those behind them. They may be perfectly fine 99 times out of 100, but put a sudden, high load on the mounting points due to braking, wind loads or sudden lateral loads, and there is a possiblilty of failure. I have seen this on several occasions and once (not me) causing an accident with the boat coming off the car and hitting the car behind. I figure the few more minutes it takes me to run front and rear tiedowns to a good bumper support, I have the peace of mind that I won't kill someone or lose my boat. I tell everyone to whom I sell a boat to use the bow/stern tiedowns. But I sure do see alot of boaters (mostly kayakers, canoeist are more inclined to use them) that don't. I stay away from them on the highways....

Fat Elmo

what you are gonna be saying to the lawyers , judges , insurance folks , and the families of the people that were injured or died because your rack failed and there weren’t any bow-stern lines . Course ya could always say ya didn’t think this would happen because it never happened before or you were in a hurry , or any number of things , consider what you’ll be thinking of when you rest your head on your pillow at night. Yes , it sounds harsh , but then that’s the ugly reality of life sometimes .Good luck sleep well

no need for rubbing
ropes. Do advocate a stern line which goes under bumper. Bow line often isnt at the bow all the way. Open the hood and you will find a number of points on the sheet metal with holes where you can run a loop of parachute cord around(the hood hinge being one) I tie the racked boat with safety lines to these loops. I use two loops others with a very short cars sometimes use four or six. Looks like a spider web. None of the lines go across the hood and down the front of the car. I regard these lines as safety lines to keep the damage confined to me.

What happens
if your factory/yakima/Thule rack lets go? Anybody behind you? A canoe or kayak smashing through somebody’s windshield likely to kill or injure somebody? If you have a Kargomaster or other heavy duty rack bolted to the truck bed, then maybe you don’t need bow and stern lines. I just don’t get the lack of concern about the consequinces of a boat coming off and hitttng an innocent person. I say yes, use a bow and stern line, use some clear plastic tubing to run your line through to keep it rubbing the paint. Yakima and Thule make some nifty bow and stern lines, they are fast and easy, but a bit pricey. Just learn to tie a truckers hitch and attach a couple of easy to get to anchor points mentioned above.

I assume you are refering to me…

– Last Updated: May-30-04 11:00 PM EST –

first off, I normally have Whitewater boats on all of my racks. It would be both hard and unlikely that I could tie bow lines to the total max of boats I have had on my jeep at one time. (8) If you have an ideas I am all ears.

secondly, IF a tubular steel rack on my pickup breaks bow lines are not going to help as I am probrably upside down.

Thirdly, I keep my rack system and straps in good working order. I inspect them and test for tigghtness before each use. If you will read my first post closely, when carrying my seayaks I do use saftey lines that are attached to the vehicle. I just choose to attach them elsewhere... As in other than my bumper. Also notice in my post I mention where to tie them for folks that are curious to know a method that does not rub your car.

fourthly, I do sleep well. There are far more likely accidents than a properly tied of and secured boat coming loose from the roof of my vehicle.

Night Night


Bow lines
I use them. Not just for extra safety but if one of my straps start loosing up for whatever reason the bow line lets me know because I see it start flapping around. I found these little double S hook lines with a rachet style pully I hook right under my bumper. No rub or anything. Oh, they were in K-Mart for less than $7…

Okay…enough comments to convince me to use them. I have several friends that don’t. I’ve wondered about the need since the tie downs on my racks hold extremely well. Honestly didn’t give a lot of thought to what would happen if they failed.

Seakayaking’s post seemed awful harse, but I don’t beleive it was directed at anyone in particular. No need to be insulting. He made his point.

check it out
Hey Gold Fish check the archives of this subject there was an excellent post with photo’s on the subject. Seems someone suggested getting some webbed loops which you can purchase {they gave a link to the site too} or you could very make and attach to bolt points under the hood …when you need them lift the hood tuck them out and there you go no rubbing and strong anchor points. The store bought type bolt down right under the hood and are attached to a washer which slips over the bolt your hood rest on easy as pie check it out.

Here is a good, long thread regarding bow and stern tie-downs: