Side Carry Handles

-- Last Updated: Feb-25-10 5:47 AM EST --

I would like to replace the side carry handles on a couple of my kayaks (Hurricane Phoenix and WS Tarpon). They are the usual rubber coated nylon straps and work fine, but I would like something less bulky that didn’t interfere with close paddle strokes.

I’m suppose I could make something, but does anyone know of any aftermarket straps I could install?


Use the RDF’s?
I think I see a couple of recessed deck fittings that cover the stretch where the handle is, in the photos. If I am right, you could put in static line (from a kayak shop or someplace that has climbing line), run it thru them and take out the handles.

That said, could you also alter your stroke to avoid hitting them, maybe to a higher angle stroke? Just a guess from the pic and maybe I am wrong, but it looks like you must be paddling on low angle to be hitting those handles.

paddle length
What’s your paddle length? I’ve never had a problem hitting the handles other than the time I demoed a 215cm paddle. I use a 220 and 230 with no issues even in my Commander 120.

Carry Handles
Celia…What photos?

I’m using a 220 with a high stroke. It isn’t a constant problem, and I probably do it more on turns, or when I get tired. I just thought it would be nice if I could make the problem go away with a simple fix.

From Hurricane’s web site

– Last Updated: Feb-25-10 9:05 AM EST –

The pics of the Phoenix(s). I didn't look at the other, figured it was similar.

I used a 220 with my T160 and
beat up my knuckles on the carry straps. Switched to a 230 and the problem went away.

I think your idea is OK. Just replace the handles with some nylon strap.

Can’t see how the handles are attached.
Are they just screwing them in? How much of a hull recess is there?

Nylon strap is OK. Polyester is “dryer” if you can get it. Stretches less when wet. Of course you are unlikely to find straps pre-holed and pre-grommeted. The way I do it is to get some Seamgrip (used for sealing seams in tents, a urethane) and soak the strap where it is to be screwed down. The Seamgrip will reinforce and harden the strap to a surprising degree. Then, if I think it necessary, I put in a brass grommet. If your handles are screwed with washers, you may not even need grommets. Note that I do NOT fold over the ends of the straps. Isn’t necessary.

If the handles are over recesses, I would strive for an almost taut strap that just allows your fingers enough room for carrying. More will just cause the strap to bow and crowd your fingers. If you want a stiffer handle, you could sew a stiffener longitudinally into the strap. But try the simple approach first. Buy enough strap to try more than once, and note that Seamgrip tends to set up at the nozzle end. To use all of it, clip one of the bottom corners.

I have this problem too
Mostly when I’m using a single blade which is very handy for sneaking up on birds of paddling in big winds.

I think I’ll replce mine with just a plain strap too.

Replacement Handles
Thanks guys…There are recesses on both the Phoenix amd Tarpon so a plain strap could be run almost straignt. The handles do screw in so it should be fairly straight forward.

I asked just in case someone would reply that…oh yea - Harmony, or NRS, or somebody has already thought of this. I’m one of those pathetic guys that still struggles with which end of a screwdriver to use.

Try Tom has as good a range of kayak specific parts as anyplace I’ve ever seen. Tom’s a good guy who will offer advice too.