Gear Review: KanuLock Tie Downs – Lockable Tie Downs For Everyday Use
What are They Why You Should Have a Set
KanuLocks are lockable tie down straps which cannot be cut with a knife or scissors. Pretty cool, huh? The lock is integrated into each strap (there are no external parts, save for the key) and the straps themselves are reinforced with two stainless steel cables securely nestled away inside the strap and hidden from view. Using them is easy and no different from a conventional set of tie downs, but with the added peace of mind that your board will not fall prey to opportunistic theft the next time you stop at the store, go out for a drink with friends or leave your board on your rack while at work. Unless you live somewhere with zero crime or always drive directly from home to the water and back, KanuLock tie downs are as essential to paddling as your board and paddle.
These tie downs are best viewed as a theft deterrent. I emphasize the deterrent component. At the end of the day, if someone comes along with a pair of bolt cutters, then yes, you are probably going to lose your board. In more realistic scenarios, however, strapping down your board with a pair of KanuLock tie downs is going to deter most thieves and give you far greater flexibility when you’re driving around town with your expensive paddleboard on your roof.
View of the lock.
Imagine the following scenario: A potential thief with the intent to steal quickly scans the parking lot at your favorite paddling spot for a board to steal while you and your friends have strolled over to the neighborhood bar & grill for drinks and a bite to eat after paddling. Sure, you can try to park with your vehicle in sight or assume that the area is has too much activity for a thief to strike. And if that potential thief adopts the posture that your vehicle and board are their own as they begin to unload it, will anyone take notice or question the activity? Probably not. And in a few quick seconds your board will be gone.
I’ve been using a set of KanuLock tie downs for the past two months. While I’ve been fortunate to have never had my board stolen in the past, I now feel much more comfortable knowing my board is safe and secure on top of my Jeep. So much so in fact that I cannot imagine using anything but KanuLock tie downs to strap down my boards. The straps are convenient and easy to use. In some ways even more so than conventional straps because the steel cables inside each strap give the straps more rigidity, making them easier to maneuver and position on your board.
And in case you are wondering whether or not a thief could simply slide your board out from beneath the straps and walk off the answer is a resounding no. This is due to the fact that the widest point on a board is in the middle which will be conveniently in between the straps making it impossible to slide back and forth.
When locking a set of KanuLock tie downs, I recommend pulling the locking lever up to make sure the lever is fully aligned before inserting the key. Think of this process as the same as firmly pulling a door shut in order to engage a deadbolt lock. The deadbolt lock in the door must be lined up with its opposite section in the door frame. The lock on these tie downs is no different. Your key should easily slide into the lock and turn, if it doesn’t, pull the lever up.
KanuLock Tie Down Sizes
KanuLock tie downs come in a sensible selection of lengths to accommodate multiple boards and a variety of watercraft. Size options include: 2.5m (8 ft), 3.3m (11 ft), 4.0m (13 ft), and 5.4m (18 ft) each of which is color coded for easy identification. I’ve been testing out a set of 4.0m straps and they are long enough to carry to SUPs side by side or stacked on top of one another. If you only ever need to tie down one board I recommend selecting one of the shorter straps, depending on the width of your board. Take a look at the accompanying size chart to view your best options. You can purchase them either online directly from the manufacturer or from your favorite local SUP shop. Simple, easy to use, and highly durable, I highly recommend picking up a pair. You’ll be glad you did.
MSRP: $69.95 – $99.95 Visit Kanulock.com to learn more.