How to keep straps from tangling?

-- Last Updated: Mar-22-08 8:08 PM EST --

Geeze! I swear the boat racking straps we have purposely entwine with each other when not in use. Even if I straighten them out and separate them every time I use them, they are either tangled or messy when I go to use them next time.

I have 3 sets of straps I keep for racking the boats in the trunk of my car. I have tried a few things, but I need a relatively quick-n-easy way to keep them all sorted and separate.

Suggestions? Ideas? What works and what doesn't?

PS I am not a neatnik or perfectionist. Rolling them up so they look like they just came out of the store packaging doesn't work for me.

Roll them up
Roll them up in pairs.

Take two straps, put the buckles one on top of the other and roll a pair of them up.

Having two buckles in the middle to roll means you get more per turn.

Takes all of 30 seconds Ness.

I hate it when my strap gets tangled…

try this.

Home Cheapo and Lowes
sell plastic devices that act as spools for extension cords; about 14"x5"…maybe $3.00. You could get one for each strap and keep them separate.

Rubber bands
I roll them up quickly and put a rubber band around each one. Just keep a couple extra rubber bands in the glove compartment since they will break over time.

Two types of people in this world:
Those who are anal, and those who are not.

For the second group, we just “daisy chain” them in pairs. I hold the buckles together, form a loop and 'chain 'em until there are 6 inch or so ends remaining, and feed those through the last loop. Works best with flexy, broken-in straps.


Not that there is anything wrong with being anal.

Daisy chains work…
I have sets of NRS straps in my workshop, in 2 different vehicles, and 5 or 6 pair in a hanging basket in my garage. No mess/no hassles.

Daisy chain is quick & easy. If you don’t know how to do it,ask an electrician; most of them know how. Learn it & practice it a few times & you’ll never forget it.

I use the same method on long electrical extension cords, para cord, tubular webbing, painters, utility cord, bungee cord, and other myriad pieces of rope & cordage.


Use velcro straps
Like so:

I keep my straps
in a bucket. I just kind of feed them into the bucket as I put them in. I find that it is really no big deal getting them out and they don’t seem to really get all that tangled. If I roll straps up around the buckles, I find that they tend to be all twisted when I unravel the roll. Just preferences, I guess.

what works for me
Take the strap and fold it in half, then fold that in half and continue to fold in half until you have about a 3-4 foot section. Tie the whole thing together with a knot in the middle. It is quicker than rolling them up, they come apart easily (just untie the knot) and they will not tangle amongst themselves.

Sea-Kayaker mag had a technique
Don’t remember the issue, but S-K illustrated a dead-easy technique for winding straps around your thumb and forefinger to create neat bundles that store easily. I use this method all the time but can’t explain it nearly as well as the S-K folks.

Anyone got a link to the article?

Thick or thin straps?
My good NRS straps just take a shake and they are free. I have a few cheap Harbor Freight type ones and they stay tangled - hence I don’t use them.

I use the spaghetti pile "method"
I Rarely get tangles. Seems to me being finicky about straps is wasted time. That is, unless you get a lot of satisfaction in seeing them all neat and pretty.

For the lazy, with ADD
I have three sets of straps. I also tired of the sorting. Here is the easiest method: save Folger’s plastic coffee cans. Put a set of straps in each can. I put the straps end-to-end, wrap them up together around my hand, and stick them in the can. A separate can for each set. When you get them out, they fall out with no tangles.

Roll your own
I roll mine around the buckle and stuff them in the door pockets in my truck. If I was keeping them in a trunk I’d probably get a small nylon stuff sack to put them in, or maybe a coffee can.

I figure I spend less time rolling them than I would untangling them.

same way I do it

This is the fastest and easiest way. Who wants to spend all that time rolling and securing the rolls?

One word…DAISYCHAIN…easy as can be.

net bags
Take the netted bags that come with all kayaking gear–you know, the one’s where we wonder, “Man, this is a nice netter bag with a draw string on top. I sure hate to toss it, but what am I going to do with it?”.

Put one strap per bag. Ta daa.

not loose in the bed of a truck
oops. I tossed it back there in what I thought was a rolled up piece,five miles on the freeway at 65mph there’s this 12’ length of webbing snaking around in the air weaving all over the place,and out.