Canoe float bags

-- Last Updated: Jun-08-06 9:28 PM EST --

Need to know how to strap in float bags? I have found float bags, but how do you keep them in? Seems to me that there should be some criss-cross tie down points, but I'm not about to drill that many holes in my Penobscot. Also, any ideas on size? 26X16 to large? Will need to set it up for tandem, and ocassional 3rd, if I can get my daughter back in it again.

lacing and anchor instructions

Sounds like you are looking for end bags? Wenonah 32" (Mohawk sold out).

For the center something like a Mohawk 36x36 (on sale).

If you don’t want to drill holes, try
contact cement. Blow your bags up, then apply contact cement to inside of boat and to mating surfaces of float bags. Then carefully insert each bag and push firmly in place.

Paddlers everywhere will marvel at how your bags magically stay in the boat without any visible means of attachment.

Before I got this brilliant idea, I drilled the holes. Through the hull, just below the gunwales. And then I laced cord through the holes. That’s how it’s done in primitive float bag installation country. Of course, if you want to put multiple damaging screw holes in your gunwales, you can screw in little lacing brackets. But the old, time-tested drill-through-the-gunwale method has served many a whitewater paddler well.

That’s what I thought
I’d have to do. Thanks. Now I need to order the bags and get the lacing kit. Think I will drill the holes under the gunwale and install some grometts, I will not be leaving the bags in as WW is only a very rare occurance for us. The Etowah River was an eye opening experience and I want to be better prepared for when we go back. The canoe gets heavy when full of water, and is not easy to empty in moving water. Of water that is, we, the occupants went out rather easily, and quick too.

Sent you an email…
Have photos of 2 different, whitewater boats, rigged with flotation. If you want to see photos, send me you email address.

Pictures worth a thousand words…


Back when I first ran the Etowah
(1974), nobody used float bags but many people used huge styrofoam float blocks.

On a good day on the Etowah, you shouldn’t need floatation at all, but you’ll need it on lots of other GA rivers as you work up in difficulty.

It sound like you won’t need a front
one if you are setting it up for tandem.

Last year we bought a used Penobscot, and the guy had it rigged for sailing.

You wouldn’t believe the amount of two hole grommets he had in the gunnels.

He has three on each side of the rear which I will use and three on each side of the bow which I just removed.

He had none in the center, so I will add three on each side, but I will use single hole eyes and put them under the gunnels. His were on top.

When you lash them in, make sure you put a cross lashing in front of the rear, and in front and in back of the center,(use the eyes in the bags for that). We learned the hard way many years ago in our OT Disco!



I just tie mine in using the loop
I just tie mine in usint the loop formed when the dry bag is buckled at the top. Then, thread a rope, bungie, (your pick) or strap through the loop and around the yoke in the middle or by the seat.

Size? I’ve got several sizes. Depends upon what you’re haulin.

(I was thinking DRY bags…not float bags.)

Gilda Radner- “Nevermind”

Fear not to drill…
I drilled vertically through the gunwales of my Penobscot 17, used stainless steel machine screws, fender washers and locknuts to hold 5" lengths of 1" webbing doubled into loop with a hole melted using nail heated with propane torch. I located these loops about every 6" from bow to stern. They are very handy for securing air bags, extra paddles, dry bags, bailers etc.

The only downside that I have encountered is the screw-head “humps” when sliding the canoe on the Thule rack. I just lift a little.

R U kidding?

– Last Updated: Jun-09-06 10:06 AM EST –

g2d? Did you really cement floatation bags into your canoe? What about when they need replacment? Sounds like a mess in waiting.

one way to do it

remove rivet from gunnel, put in new rivet with grommet.

glued into the bottom?
At least I’d no longer feel guilty when I’m too lazy to take them out to drive home.

I’m curious what shape they are when inflated. I use the placement of the lacings and anchor straps to “shape” the inflated bags. Without doing that, mine are pretty much just nylon balloons.

Thanks jjmish
That looks like a slick way to go. I have lots of rivets, I’m an aircraft sheetmetal mech, so I have an assortment to choose from.

Thanks for all other replys.

Would like to see that Penob set up for sailing.

May try that later on lakes.