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2018 AOTY/DOTY Entry

Topic: Quick Release Anchor System~Step-By-Step Tutorial  (Read 35160 times)

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Tote

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This topic is going to cover the Quick Release Anchor System (QRAS).
There are plenty of ways to anchor a kayak. So why would anyone want or need a QRAS?
Most use it so they can soak bait, hook into that monster fish and go for a sleigh ride but it also acts as a safety feature when anchored in heavy current.
The idea of a QRAS for your kayak is three fold.
First, it allows you to be in current and remain stationary.
Second, it allows you to be able to break free from the stationary position INSTANTLY, when YOU choose to do so, with almost zero effort involved. Not only is this important when playing a huge fish but it is just as important from a safety aspect. One of the worst mistakes a kayaker can make is to have their kayak tethered to the anchor line in heavy current without a QRAS. If something big snags the anchor line, such as a submerged drifting log, and starts pulling the kayak under water there is little or no time to mess around with knots or break out a knife to cut the anchor line.  Bad things happen in an instant and usually without warning. The kayaker needs to be able to break free and break free NOW without hesitation.
Third, after you have broken free from your anchor line you want to be able to retrieve your anchor.
This design is simple to install, easy to use, and most important VERY effective.
There are two basic components. The quick release is one component and the anchor float is the other.
For the quick release you will need the following:
1) A ten foot length of 3/8’’ hollow braid poly rope. This is the yellow rope that you buy in a bag at Home Depot. You want this kind of rope because it floats.
2) An eye pad, preferably stainless steel, and the hardware to secure it to your kayak. If you have inside access to the rear of the kayak I would recommend using nuts, bolts and washers. If not then you will have to go with rivets. Use the aircraft grade black anodized rivets, not the ones you get from the hardware store. Check online for these. Many kayak outfitters carry them.
3) Either a 5/16’’ clamcleat or a cam cleat that is large enough to accommodate the 3/8’’ poly rope and the hardware to install it. Both have their own merits.
The clamcleat is less expensive, about 75% less than the cam cleat, has no moving parts and is easier to install using either rivets or nuts and bolts.
The cam cleat gives you a quicker more solid grip and puts less wear on the rope. However, this has moving parts and cannot be riveted into place.
Whichever cleat you decide on be sure you do not have to the thread the rope THROUGH any part of it. You should be able to lay the rope over it and have it lock into place. If you do decide on the clamcleat get the 5/16’’ clamcleat even though the poly braid is 3/8’’. The poly braid is hollow so the 5/16’’ clamcleat is the right size for this kind of rope.
4) Goop; marine or plumbers works fine.
5) BIC lighter.
6) Roll of electrical tape.



For the anchor component you will need the following.
1) A 3/8’’ thick 12’’ to 16’’ long bungee cord .
2) A four foot and a three foot piece of nylon braid rope. Choose this over the hollow poly braid because it holds a knot better.
3) A big high visibility float which you can secure a rope to both ends. A white boat fender bumper works great but the choice is yours.
Keep in mind you will need an anchor, line, and something to keep the line together. Everyone seems to have their own system. My suggestion here is to see what others have and figure out what will work best for you. I will give what I think is the easiest set up to put together but I recommend you look around and see not only what you think will work best for you but also what you are capable of making.
4) Stainless steel carabineer.
5) 100 feet of 5/16’’ nylon braid rope.
6) Plastic extension cord winder. They are usually about a dollar at hardware stores.
7) A 5lb. Navy anchor.




Let’s get started.
The eye pad will be installed as far back on the kayak as possible. You are going to install it above the water line on either the right or left side of the kayak and parallel to the kayak. Make sure the location does not interfere with anything such as handles or rudders.
Take your 10’ poly braid rope and electrical tape and tape one end of the rope to the kayak where you plan on installing the eye pad.
Run the rope along the same side of the kayak to the desired location of your cam or clamcleat and tape the rope there.
The location of the cleat should be within easy grasp and should not interfere with your paddle stroke.
Take a look at the rope and make sure it does not go into the tank well or interfere with any other part of the kayak or any gear that will be on the kayak. If it does, adjust it accordingly.





Once you are comfortable with the location of the rope you are ready to install the eye pad.

Find a drill bit the same size as the hardware you are using to secure
the eye pad. A 3/16’’ drill bit works perfect.
Mark the location of the eye pad and drill only one hole.



Place the eye pad over the drilled hole. Insert, but do not secure, one screw or rivet to keep the eye pad from moving. Drill the other hole.




Remove eye pad and fill both holes with GOOP.




You can now finish installing the eye pad.




You will repeat the same process when installing the clamcleat or cam cleat.
PAY SPECIAL ATTENTION  to the direction you install the cleat.
You want the rope to release when you pull forward and you want the rope to lock in place when it is being pulled from the back. Check twice, install once!!!!!!

Tie a knot in one end of the poly rope. Use a little GOOP in the knot to keep it from ever coming undone and use the lighter to melt the tag end of the rope just above the knot. Thread the rope through the eye pad until it stops at the knot.



Lay the rope in the cleat and pull from the back until it locks into place. Cut the rope about 10’’ to 14’’ from the cleat. I know you started with ten feet of poly braid. This was to allow room for error and to accommodate all lengths of kayaks.



Take your electrical tape and wrap it as tight as you can twice around the end of the poly braid you just cut leaving about 1/4” of rope exposed. Melt this end with the lighter all the way down to the tape. Leave the tape on. The tightly melted end combined with the tape makes it much easier to thread through the eye pad.



It should look something like this.




CONGRATULATIONS!!!
The quick release component is done.

Let’s move on to the anchor float.
The goal is to have the float 1 to 2 feet behind the kayak.
Take the bungee cord and fold it in half and loosely tie a knot at the end. This will make a loop out of the bungee cord.  Press the sides of the loop together. The length of the loop should be 4 to 6 inches long.
Tie the 4’ nylon braid to the bungee loop. Try to incorporate this knot into the knot in the bungee cord. Once the knots are tied pull the bungee knot tight and trim the excess tag ends of the bungee cord.
Tie the other end of the nylon braid to your float.
It should look like this when you are done.



Tie the three foot piece of nylon braid to the opposite end of the float then tie the carabineer to that. The distance between the float and carabineer should be about 8-10 inches.
It should look like this when you are done.




Using the extension cord winder and the 100’ nylon braid rope tie the rope to the middle of the winder then tie a loop in the rope a few inches from that.



Leaving the loop exposed, wind the remaining 100’ of rope. Once the rope has been wound clip any excess length of plastic from the winder and tie on the anchor.
Clip the carabineer to the loop and you are done.




*The little red float on the winder is optional and is not necessary for the QRAS. I did this because I use this rope for other applications as well.
Definitely do not attach the carabineer directly to the winder. If you do that and the winder breaks you will loose your anchor. By attaching it to the loop in the rope you avoid this risk.

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!  Your QRAS is now complete.

Here’s how to use it.
Hold onto the winder and drop anchor. Let out at least 2 feet of rope for every 1 foot in depth.
Once you let out the desired amount of rope make a half hitch around the hook on the winder to keep the rope from going out any further.
Thread the poly braid through the bungee loop.



DO NOT LET GO OF THE POLY BRAID ROPE!!!
Toss the float and winder into the water. As the kayak drifts down current you will notice the bungee loop sliding down the poly rope.
Once the bungee loop gets to the end of the rope, at the eye pad, you will stop drifting. Lock the rope into the cleat.
It will look like this in the water, with more anchor rope out of course.




If you want to pick up and move to another location simply take a stroke or two backwards. The bungee loop will slide forward right up to the cleat. You can pull it off, pull up anchor and be on your way.
When you need to release from the anchor just give a little pull forward on the poly braid rope and toss it to the side.



As your kayak drifts down current the rope will slide through the bungee loop.



And soon



You will be



Completely free.




Once you have accomplished your mission it is time to get things back in order.
Take a stroke or two backwards so the poly rope comes to your side.
Put it back into the cleat and go to your anchor float. Hopefully it isn’t TOO far away.
Now for the disclaimer.
Involvement in dangerous sports and related activities such as kayaking carries a significant risk of damage to property, personal injury or death. Participate at your own risk!
This has been presented for informational purposes only. If you decide to apply all or any part of this you choose to do so at your own risk.
If anyone has any questions you know where to reach me.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2010, 08:27:44 PM by Tote »
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AlsHobieOutback

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Tote, thanks so much!  This is one of the best do-it-yourself posts I have seen yet! 


dilbeck

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FABULOUS!!!!  Thanks Mike!

I hope to set mine up soon.  Quick question though, instead of installing another pad eye, why didn't you just tie the rope to the metal ring on the stern?

Michael







polepole

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Nice tutorial Tote,

I might add one bit of useful info.  That bumper buoy looks a little on the small side.  I used to use one of that size (well, still do sometimes) and I once had it dive under in the current.  I had to wait for the current to slow before it popped back up.

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Tote

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FABULOUS!!!!  Thanks Mike!
I hope to set mine up soon.  Quick question though, instead of installing another pad eye, why didn't you just tie the rope to the metal ring on the stern?

Because the instructions would not have been as informative as it would only apply to that particular model of kayak.

Quote
I might add one bit of useful info.  That bumper buoy looks a little on the small side

It is bigger than you think, but I see your point. It is not what I use anymore. I have an eyesore of a float/line reel but it ROCKS!!!
« Last Edit: January 29, 2009, 03:38:56 PM by Tote »
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polepole

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It is bigger than you think, but I see your point. It is not what I use anymore. I have an eyesore of a float/line reel but it ROCKS!!!


Yeah.  Next to the linewinder it looks small.  But with the anchor in the pic, it looks large.

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piski

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Excellent post, Tote. Sets a new standard for step-by-step rigging instructions.
Plus, you've coined a new 4-letter word! "Git yer QRAS off my lawn!"

Seriously though, this is great considering the risk factors involved with anchoring.

BTW, I have an eyelet on the stern of my yak that the end of the release line (poly braid) is tied to. It's like the ring in your pics that dilbeck mentioned. I understand you used a deck loop/pad eye here to apply to all kayaks, but has anyone come across any issues with attaching the release line to the very stern of the boat? 

Also, I'm not using any bungee on my anchor line. Is it more for comfort because of the shock absorption or are there other factors as well?
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Jedmo

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Tote, I think what you have just share with us is the most simplest anchor
system I've ever seen. Cheap and very effective. I have made something similar
to what you have just to get by for that sturgeon madness we have been
having. I am going to leave it as is just because it works great rather than
fooling around on anchor trolley system.

Jedmo
1st place GS3 2009
7th place AOTY 2009


SBD

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Tote:

Nice update on your old genius.  This system is soooo simple but works super good.


SharkByte

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wow - I was just looking for an anchor post...this is really, really great info.  Thanks!


Tote

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has anyone come across any issues with attaching the release line to the very stern of the boat? 

Also, I'm not using any bungee on my anchor line. Is it more for comfort because of the shock absorption or are there other factors as well?

I like it on the side of the kayak as opposed the the very rear point because the line will pretty much stay on the same side as the cleat. It is a hassle if your line ends up on one side and your cleat is on the other, but to each his own.
I use the bungee cord for two reasons; shock absorption and it keeps a rigid loop. The rigid loop makes for a cleaner release and the loop will not twist up and become tight or knotted around the release line.
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ravensblack

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I set mine up using Totes advice. It works great. Plus I got to try it out first hand on the 18th when I realeased for a sturgeon fight. I tied a stainless ring to the end of my anchor line. The release line is attached to the rear carry handle on my t15 which is on a shock cord. I then play the line out a bit so the anchor line end is about 2 feet from the rear of the kayak. Giving me a very straight line when current is running. I also used some climbing rpoe for the release line.  It seemed to hold better in the clamcleat. This was all based on Totes idea. I tend to overcomplicate shiot.
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piski

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Quote from: Tote
I use the bungee cord for two reasons; shock absorption and it keeps a rigid loop. The rigid loop makes for a cleaner release and the loop will not twist up and become tight or knotted around the release line.

Yes, just a loop in the rope could bind up after some time tugging & wear. Ravens' stainless ring is good for that reason as well, since it's a smooth rigid loop to slide right off.

Either way, it points to importance of always checking your equipment before paddling out.
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jonesz

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Nice tutorial Tote. Thanks for the effort posting that up. I use a very similar system. Only difference is instead of drilling and mounting the rear loop, I just larksfoot my release rope around the rear carry handle of the yak. (one less instalation step is all) Take it off when I get back in before loading on the truck. I use the jam cleat as well. Like no moving parts, and no rust potential.  Good job!  :smt023


bmb

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bump to the top for 2009 sturgeon season.


 

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