I need a locking cable

Can someone suggest some lockable cables to secure my two recreational kayaks to the roof rack? I need a couple to make sure someone doesn’t “borrow” the kayaks on our trip out west while we’re off hiking, etc. I have WS Tsunami 120’s and I don’t see any kind of hard loop to attach a cable to.

Lasso security cables work wonderful


Many people have made their own, improvise as needed

Lasso or steering wheel club lock
Locking lasso cables should be available at most watersport/outdoor stores.

Another options is use a car steering wheel club lock. Lock it across the cockpit and use any cable to lock around that.

Visit a bike store …
You can usually find long heavy duty cables with eyes on both ends , you make a loop in one end, slide it over the stern and then extend and wrap the cable around your rack and then lock the other securely to your roof rack or trailer hitch. and then do the same from the bow of the boat. THe boat can’t be rocked forward or back without cutting the cables.

I made my own. Purchased nylon coated cable at the hardware store, bent both ends into a loop and securred with the aluminum catches they sell right where you buy the cable. A couple of taps with a hammer and the aluminum stays pinch the loop tight, no chance on it pulling free. I’ve locked boats to trees and my roof rack. won’t stop a greedy theif from snipping with heavy duty cable cutters, but at least I’ll make him work for it. Whole project cost me $8 bucks minus the heavy duty master lock I purchased to complete the deal.

I agree, and can even go one step

You can get nylon coated steel cable dog runs at Wally world in different lengths, and they already have a loop in both ends. Just cut the catch off one end. Then just use a padlock.

I have to different lengths depending on how many boats I am carrying.

If I recall rightly, they are less then $10

Jack L

I know you don’t want to hear this but keep in mind that cables are just part of the deterant. With the new battery powered cutters a crook can snap those cables like they are rope. Part larger part of security is parking under lights, near entrances to stores, etc, etc. Those cables only protect you from the kids. A pro can get the boats off faster than you can with your keys.

Visit Lowes and get an 8’ Python
lock. 3/8 to 1/2" steel cable 8’ long coated with plastic. Runs $20.00, operates with a key and can be run under the kayak seat and back around your roof racks. Easier to use and (I believe) more secure than the lasso. It won’t stop guys with battery powered cut-off saws but they are pretty noisey.

Parking under bright lights (next to cars with unlocked kayaks) is the best defense.

Simple +
Shred Ready Rack Guard Cables are the typical SS cable covered with plastic sheath with different size loops at the end and a dense plastic ball strung between. Gives you the option to stick the ball inside the car and lock it instead of adding a pad lock or treat the cable as a long padlockable cable.

About $21

Other options exist as well (SPT Locking Straps) but this is the simplest/economical route.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY


I need a locking cable
I use the SPT locking cables. They are easy to put on - they are essentially your tie-down straps with a lock attached (and steel cables inside the straps).

So, you don’t need both straps and locking cables.

And, for purposes of securing your kayak to your rack, they are more secure and solid than the common, thin straps.

A downside is that they are more expensive than some of the other options mentioned in this thread.

Additional security from cutting …
Push the non-looped cable end through a length of kevlar line, then create the loop and treat the lines ends by whipping etc.

The thief will be confused by this as the kevlar line is VERY hard to simply snip with cutters, or even slice through with a carpet or razor knife. They might have to hack saw it and thats gonna bring some attention + noise when they hit the cable.

The soft line is also friendly to gelcoat surfaces as you snake it around the boats.

Hydraulic Cutters
The tool of choice now is a battery powered hydraulic cutter similar to the Hurst Tool (Jaws of Life) cutters used in rescue work. A saw has a tough time with braded cable but the cutters go through it in just a few seconds with almost no noise. A friend of mine had her road bike stolent this way. It was caught on security camera but they could not identify the people. There was also a group that was stealing trailers with them because they will cut big locks and logging chains also.

Point is, a cable or lock will not protect you from a real theif. Practice all the other protection methods also to increase your odds.

Yes, I have a public safety job background.

Go to Home Depot & get acouple…
Cable locks by Stanley. They are around $10 & they are 6’ long. Loop them through the cockpit & around your bars.

Paddle easy,


Average thief isn’t going to spend $500 on tools

–it’s a crime of opportunity and convenience

I got a security cable and hitch pin lock combo at Wal Mart in the automotive dept. This allowed me to lock my bed extender to the receiver hitch, then run the cable thru the scupper holes of my SOT. I also used a heavy chain and padlock thru the scuppers, then parked in a well lit area at the hotel we were staying at. On another occasion, I used the cable with my sit in by running it under the seat pan then locking it to the anchors in my truck bed. I haven’t figured out a way to lock down my Old Town Dirigo, since they have the floating type of seat and no molded seat pan. If I was using a car top rack, a lasso type of system either purchased or homemade would probably work. One dealer suggested installing a thru the deck rod holder, then pulling out the insert and running the cable thru that. As everyone else suggested, some type of security is better than nothing, especially if there are other items around (bikes, yaks) that aren’t secured. Nothing is foolproof, unless you have some type of enclosed lockable traier with an alarm and guard dog, but they can even be thwarted.

Good Luck
I have seen it many times

Locking cable

I’d recommend getting a swaging tool. It will last a lifetime, enables you to choose the size cable you want to use, makes cables infinitely repairable, who can design the length and style you want rather than what you can find, can be used to make cables for other applications—securing bike, mower, motorcycle, you name it. Rubber hose can be slid over cable where you want protection before putting eyes on.

I went to Meijer and got a 3-pack of bike locks with 6 matching keys. They’re 6 feet long and can be linked together. Probably not the highest quality materials on the market, but will deter. Also, remember what you’re connecting your cables to. Many bars and racks are easily adjustable or even removable by someone familiar with them. If all else fails…stay in your boat.