Kayak tow belts

I’m picking up a towing belt for kayaking, and I’ve been doing a bit of research on daisy chaining the rope for storage inside the belt.

So, here’s my question. Is it better to start the daisy chain from the belt end so you can adjust the length a little more easily by changing where the last clip is on the daisy chain, or do you start daisy chaining it at the tow end and let the chain hang out into the water?

Or, am I misunderstanding something and need more information?

Speaking of, I have a North Water QR tow belt which has the preinstalled clip. If I were to use the first method and clip in down the line, would that put all the strain of the tow on the clip itself, possibly ripping it out?

I’m not sure about others here…
…but I typically don’t do much adjusting of tow rope length. I keep it daisy-chained in the bag, but if it’s not long enough, I just un-chain it and use it full-length.

I added a bungee shock absorber to my rig with a clip on the end of it. If I do need to shorten the rope, I’ll clip it to the end of that. I wouldn’t worry about ripping the clip out of your tow rig, as the forces on it when towing are measured in tens of pounds, not hundreds as some people would have you believe.

You can see the modifications I made in my “Northwater Tow Rig Modifications” album on Webshots at:


Release from the near end
I have an older North Water waist tow system (circa 2003)and there is a brass snap hook in the bag for a loop in the daisy chain. I can release the chain by unhooking the loop in the bag.

I rarely remember to check the length when launching, so I prefer to keep my tow line daisy chained to allow about a boat length between me and boat being towed. Being able to quickly release the daisy chain from the bag end allows me to lengthen it when needed in conditions.

You start from
the tow end and chain back to the bag. For most applications in the US (except for maybe open ocean towing) the daisy chained line will be sufficient. If you need to lengthen the line once it is out you can reach the stopper knot or clip at or near the bag. You wouldn’t be able to lengthen the line under tow if it was chained in the other direction.

Why are you daisy-chaining?
Is it to make the line short, more manageable, or for other reasons?

two sizes
With the rope daisy chained a 50’ tow is about 15’ long, which is a good short-tow length. If you want to get a tow on fast, or in close quarters it’s no good if you have to paddle 50 feet before your tow starts pulling.

As Wetzool said, start chaining from the clip end, and then secure it at the belt end with a slip knot or by clipping it to a 'biner.

What is daisy chaining?
I thought it was the simple overhand knot that you chain from one to another so your 15 ft. line becomes 4 feet for easy storage in your bag. What is all this shortening of the line and clipping into shorter areas that is mentioned on this thread?

I daisy chain mine in the bag but that’s it. I can easily pull out this short line, hook it to a boat and the inter-laced knots open up to full length as soon as you pull on it.