Post questions & answers about; paddle selection, building and maintenance; paddling techniques; boat transportation, storage & maintenance.
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Post by bnarus » Thu Sep 18, 2008 10:53 pm

I was just wondering where people keep their boats. My garage which is insulated would be an ideal place were it not for all the other objects in there. I am considering the crawl space under my house. It is about 4 feet high and I have a large locking access panel. I'm worried about the non climate controlled space. Any thoughts? What does everyboday else do?

Port Orchard, WA

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Post by KenC » Fri Sep 19, 2008 1:00 am

Mine hangs in the rafters of an unheated garage. I don't think climate control is necessary, but shelter from the elements (rain, snow, ice, sunlight) is good.

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Post by Rick » Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:02 am

Always out of the sun, in a garage or in a basement. Also off the ground, on 2x4s, etc... so that ground moisture doesn't come in contact with the canoe.

Fiberglass will last a long time if sunlight and the elements can't get at it... I have a lightweight fiberglass tripping canoe that's about 40 years old and it still gets some use. Last year we hit an underwater stump while paddling hard and I thought that the hull, by this time, would have become brittle with age and the canoe was holed. Nope, still flexible, no damage. Must have been the storage out of the sun.


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Post by pawistik » Mon Sep 22, 2008 12:58 pm

I hang my kayak from the ceiling of my garage using a block & tackle pulley system. It works all right. I have a tall ceiling in my garage (10') so have the room to work with there and it goes well above where the garage door opens. The disadvantage is that it somewhat limits where I can put more lights into the garage in the near future.

I put together my own pulley system from components from Princess Auto, similar in general concept to the Harken Hoister ( that sells for lotsa money. When I put mine together, I cheaped out, so the pulleys are small and the rope is fairly thin. That's not a problem for strength, but my boat doesn't lift as easily as I would like. The pulleys have a lot of resistance (because they are small & cheap), and the rope is too thin to get a good grip on. So, when I do it again, I'll spring for the better stuff and have a better lift in the end. At $55 I'd probably just buy one of these next time: ... t=4&page=1

Since you have the crawl space, I would be tempted to use that. A boat builder I know has built a long narrow storage shed for his kayaks, with a door at one end (the shed is built as part of a fence so he calls it his "fat fence"). To get the boats in and out, he has installed rails, of the type that barn doors run on. He hooks the bow grab loop onto a set of wheels that runs on the rails, slides the boat in with the wheels running down the rail and suspending the end of the boat, then suspends the stern from the rail and closes the door. It's a pretty slick system for getting a boat into a space that would otherwise not be easily accessible (under a deck, crawl space, etc.).


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Post by ealger » Mon Sep 22, 2008 7:15 pm

I have the CanoeGear setup which Bryan's speaks of. I've had 2 different canoes stored with it up to 16 feet length. My garage ceiling is 10'.
I find that this hoist, while strong enough, is not easy to use.

The master pulley end contains 2 ropes, each rope lifts separately. After lifting the load to the ceiling, the ropes are auto locked by a locking mechanism.

Now to lower the load, the ropes must be pulled parallel with the ceiling (to unlock the latch) and along the length of the canoe, keeping tension all the while lowering the load. It's awkward to do this over a 16' canoe. If a bicycle of other short load was in play, the hoist would function well.

Also I can only get the craft within 18" of the ceiling considering the hoist parts and the belt loops around the hull.

This may be my next hoist and mounted above the ceiling?
Ed Alger

Bill Robb
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Post by Bill Robb » Wed Sep 24, 2008 11:20 am


Here's a question related to storage...

I get to store my canoe inside an unheated shed over the winter, but I have to attach two horizontal 2X4's to the studs, with a diagonal brace to support them. I plan to carpet the horizontal pieces. Is there any rule of thumb as to how far apart the support members have to be - or how far in from the stems? Has anyone ever noticed their canoe / kayak starting to sag in the center - either from having support too far apart, or even from suspending it from the stems?



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Post by Rick » Thu Sep 25, 2008 9:21 am

Hi, Bill,

I don't think cedarstrips would sag visibly, especially those with arched and rounded bottoms... the cedar core in the fiberglass sandwich makes for a rigid structure, more than some of the thinner hulls manufactured today.

My Huron has been stored bottom-up in a basement most of the time for three years now, on padded 2x4s, and I can't see any change in the rocker when I sight down the keel line.

I spaced the supports so that they're about a third of the total length away from each end. That way, the gravitational forces on either side of each support should balance out... more or less.

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Post by purple otter » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:29 pm

hey guys' My wife let me hang my bob's special from our vaulted ceiling.I was just wonering if the dry heat will hurt it because we heat with wood.

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Post by Rick » Sat Dec 20, 2008 9:31 am

...if the dry heat will hurt it because we heat with wood.
I don't think it will, especially if the canoe is well-varnished, providing a vapor barrier between air and wood. Leaving cedarstrips out in the hot sun would probably be riskier because of the high temperatures that can build up.

I hope you've got the canoe well-supported up there and there are no long-term stresses working to deform the fiberglass sheathing. If the canoe is upside down on supports and resting on the gunnels, the supports should be about halfway from the midpoint to each end in order to balance out gravity on either side of the support... anyway, JMO.

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Re: Storage

Post by Abel_6 » Mon May 05, 2014 11:38 pm

Can anyone suggest me any affordable storage unit in Chicago? Earlier we occupied space for storage in Wynnum and found it very good. Now finding the same here too. Please advice if anyone knows.

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Re: Storage

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