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Canadian Canoe Routes

"V keel" on toboggan?
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Author:  bark-eater [ October 20th, 2011, 8:06 am ]
Post subject:  "V keel" on toboggan?

The Conover's "Snow Walkers Companion" mentions some toboggans having a "V keel" built in to the trailing end.

"Craig MacDonald found that among some native groups the last three crossbars of a toboggan were increasingly V-shaped towards the rear. This gave the last few feet of the toboggan a slight keel and seemed to reduce friction and aid tracking in some conditions."

Has any one here seen or tried a sled like this? It seems like an easy enough modification to do to a plastic sled, but would effect its "roll-up-ability"

The other complication I see is putting a V in the stern of the sled might make lashing down a stove problematic unless it rode on top of the cross braces.

I'm guessing that the keel would be very subtle with maybe a 1/2" of depth at the trailing edge, to keep things from getting wonky on ice or adding drag.

Author:  Bill P [ October 20th, 2011, 9:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: "V keel" on toboggan?

I don't think a keel would be that benifical unless you are traveling in the Artic. In the woods your toboggan is following you in your snowshoe float ,so tracking isn't a problem. I like the fact that my 10 foot plastic toboggan slithers behind me following a sometimes curvy trail. The last thing I would want is the toboggan going straight when I want it to turn.

Author:  dunkin' [ October 20th, 2011, 7:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "V keel" on toboggan?

I do see some merit in very select conditions, but in most cases it follows along nicely in my ski or shoe tracks. Plus, I have put on lots of mile one extreme hardpack and lots on ice too, and think it would put a lot of wear on this keel.

A friend had a commercial built pulk that had two short steel runners on it, and for the most part he found them to be a hassle, and removed them.

Author:  pawistik [ October 24th, 2011, 3:04 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "V keel" on toboggan?

Another way to do it, might be to add a keel strip at the stern of the sled. I would think adding a bit of shape to the cross bars to the back to bend the HDPE would cause a very rounded effect. Compare this to what you would see with the 2 thin slabs that might make up a traditional wood toboggan - the angle of the junction would be sharp by comparison. Think shallow V versus shallow U. I'm not sure that's what you would want, and a bit of "bite" from an extra keel piece attached at the stern would be more effective.

Having said that, if I felt it necessary to add something to control sideslip at the tail on a slope, I think I'd add small fins that could be lowered or raised as desired. I've seen (pictures of) this sort of thing on some pulks made for mountain terrain.


Author:  bark-eater [ October 25th, 2011, 1:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "V keel" on toboggan?

I was thinking I could split the tail of the sled to give a sharp V. Way back when I had a wooden single snowboard called a "Snurfer" It was a molded ply deck with a turned up nose and a V formed at the tail. as I remember you could carve a little with it, but it was to narrow to put your feet across the board, so it was a highwire act to get down the hill.

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