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Thread: Roll-Away Sled R&D

  1. #1

    Default Roll-Away Sled R&D

    Sleds have been around for a long time and I'm sure we've all had some experience with plastics for glide over snow or tundra.

    My dilemma has been finding the perfect sled for backcountry use that when the drag is accomplished...what to do with the sled in the field. I've also been using plastic sleds for packing in or out more weight and bulk than one trip with a backpack can handle.

    Last year we used sleds to portage 1 mile off a ridgeline in fall to reach a floatable channel for our moose hunt. That experience was so frustrating that it inspired me to start to work on a backcountry sled that works well for float hunters (to name just one application).

    The video below shows a sled and harness design I've been working on that is completely roll-away and highly functional.

    The two top choices for plastic material are UHMW and HDPE. These two materials have the lowest coefficient of friction available, but one is way more expensive than the other.

    I ended up using HDPE for its lower cost and reasonable Coefficient of Friction. UHMW is a superior plastic but cost prohibitive for my applications.

    The finished dimensions of the loaded sled are 20" wide X 58" long, with 8" sidewalls and 10" front and back panels. When rolled away for transport or storage, the sled becomes a 6" diameter X 36" long item that is easily clipped onto a raft or canoe for the float. The material is 1/16" HDPE.

    Here's a video. Happy to answer any questions.



    larry

  2. #2
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    Interesting…did you have more weight in your sled than the other people, how is it on gravel bars, does it handle temps below freezing and why arent the dogs harnessed to it. Cool concept. thanks for sharing.

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    Brilliant! Thanks for sharing.

    What was your loaded weight on that drag?

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    Pretty cool. Why the PVC pipe runners?

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    I use a plastic sled to bring out a moose a few year back. It worked pretty good going through small brush. It took someone in back keep the sled on the trail and not run over the person in front. Next to the river there was long thin grass that made pulling the sled very hard as bad as dragging it over sand.

    Depending on the load and terrain it can make bring out a heavy load a lot easier or you wish you left it at home.

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    I have a friend that made a sled to haul moose across the ground out of a rubber bladder used to hold fuel. He swears by it and also is in the process of "inventing" a sled..

  7. #7
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Have one for hauling out blacktails whole. Often we drag them a mile or so up and down the sides of mts, gulleys, etc.....
    The sled is very light, easily packable, and comes with a chest harness for dragging.

    Larry, yours appears to be more ''water resistant'' as in a tub that will keep water from entering in, up to a certian point. Mine is not, but I only use it to haul carcasses out. Both make it easier to haul a heavier or cumbersome load I suppose.
    Bk

  8. #8

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    Yeah the PVC poles are called a Pulk. They provide amazing control for up and downhill travel, as well as being about to pivot your hip out to flip the sled into a direction of purpose. I made them 72" long to allow room for my skiis. They breakdown at 36" each, so you'll have 4 ea at 36".

    I had between 85-90-lbs, which is a reasonable load with a backpack, but my purpose for using it on that trip was for trials to work out the kinks by August. I'll have about 110-120 lbs per sled with the Legend and gear in one, then a PR49 and gear in the other. 14-day adventure to cover 10-15 miles overland and 220 miles on the river.

    The dogs do pull it in winter, connected to harnesses.

    The HDPE works brilliantly over snow, great over moist surfaces, awesome over gravel, and acceptable over dry tundra, not to mention how well it handles the timber. The Pulk poles keep the sled directly behind my body in line every step of the way.

    I have more video and lots of pics to show how to make this sled yourself.

    I'll post ASAP, maybe next week.

  9. #9
    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    For anyone that missed this thread ( http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...Packraft-Rondy ) Larry has a couple more videos of the sled in action.

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    What does the sled weigh?

  11. #11

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    Enjoyed the video, thanks!

    Lotta people been pulling sleds around the Alaska backcountry for a long time; you might benefit from their experience and apply it to your particular purpose. For example, http://crust.outlookalaska.com/TimsSledTips/. That guy has skiied in the Olympics; oh and he skiied the Quest trail and the Iditarod trail too. A few thousand miles of pulling a sled; go figure. In the old days they had dogs fer' that!

    Good luck in your endeavours!

  12. #12

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    Oh yeah that's for sure. There are some great sleds out there already. Problem is there are huge drawbacks to each one because every application requires a tweak in the sled design. That's what makes the challenge attractive to me.

    Summer sleds are quite different than winter ones, IMO. Roll-away sleds are contrastly different still. I haven't found one yet that assembles to 20"X60" surface with adequate sidewalls. Gear displacement to lower CG is key. Most sleds I've found fall a little short.

    Critical thinking stimulation is my goal.

  13. #13

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    Here's my source for the 1/16" HDPE plastic sheets.


    Here's the basic template after making a couple different ones.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  14. #14

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    This sled is 36" wide by 80" long rolled out flat. That provides a 20" X 60" finished width for the hull and with 8" sidewalls and 10" nose and tail walls.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  15. #15

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    Once the basic template is cut and prepared, it's time to pre-drill your rigging holes to run nylon webbing and parachute cord for securing and final assembly.

    The body strap holes are drilled 3" from the hull line and about 12" apart along the side walls. This strap will support the drag load around the body of the sled, connected eventually to the pulk poles.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  16. #16

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    The nose and tail wall holes are drilled 2" above the hull line and 2" from each corner, which provides about 16" between the pulk poles when assembled.


    The holes for the body strap are drilled with a 1/2" drill bit, to accommodate a 1" nylon webbing.

  17. #17

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    The nose and tail wall dimensions:

  18. #18

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    The parachute cord holes are drilled 2" from the outer edge of the walls and sequenced 1" apart and 3" apart.

    Here's what it looks like with strapping assembled laying flat.

    The webbing loops are pushed through the front holes and parachute cord attached to run through the 1/2" PVC pulk poles.

  19. #19

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    Parachute cord can be used to secure the sled load, and I use 2ea 10' lengths shown here.

    The body strap is 15' long and has a simple ladder lock buckle at the front. The loops for the pulk poles are simple, just fold and push through the holes and attached cordage.

  20. #20
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    Great idea on the foldable pulk concept. I use a sled in the winter to carry kids or ice fishing gear when cross country skiing. There are many times hunting I could have used one but never have one handy cause they are too bulky. Like carrying moose hind quarters to a machine or raft. Several times I have helped with a caribou that would have been better slid out. I have seen guys using them in the Brooks. And sliding out deer the horns and legs always catch on trees and the sled would really help that. Good concept!!
    “I come home with an honestly earned feeling that something good has taken place. It makes no difference whether I got anything, it has to do with how the day was spent. “ Fred Bear

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