- Oct 24, 2012
- Reaction score
The reason that lacing is required is to hold the bags down within the hull. Otherwise any water that enters the boat goes underneath the bags and floats them up above the gunwales. If the bags are secured only at the corners the center of the bag will pooch way up.
I'll just have to disagree with this if we're talking about a big center bag (or tire tube in the old days) jammed under the center thwart. Water can't float such a bag up, if it's fully inflated, because of the thwart, and there will be very little stress on the corner grommets. All my whitewater canoes -- only one of which is Kevlar, the others being plastic -- have end bags in cages, which I never remove. The string cages and bags stay in the boats permanently until the bags fail.
My reluctance about cages in this post is because I am assuming the boat in question will not be a dedicated or hard core whitewater boat, but mainly a flat water boat. If it is mainly a whitewater canoe being used in class 2+ maximum, I'd end bag it with cages using one of the attachment mechanisms described above for vinyl or aluminum gunwales. I don't think an additional huge center bag is necessary for such mild whitewater unless the paddlers are quite novice, in which case I'd use the center thwart jam for it.
For the wood gunwales on my Kevlar WW canoe 40 years ago, I used low-tech screw eyes into the wood for the end bag cages.