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Thread: my Pulk's maiden voyage

  1. #1
    Senior Member Jason Berard's Avatar
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    my Pulk's maiden voyage

    I built a pulk last winter using Ed Bouffard's design from this site:http://www.skipulk.com/

    here's a pic of me hauling the pulk this weekend:


    It was fun to build, but I haven't had it out other than a few very short trips hauling my kids around the yard, until last weekend.

    Here's my assessment:
    I can see where it is important to get as much slack out of the harness/pole set-up as possible. The only slack in my poles is at the webbing loop where the poles attach to the hip belt, and its not much, but you can feel the pulk jerk a tiny bit with every step. I will have to tighten that up somehow.

    With the crossed rigid poles, the pulk tracks behind me great! I could turn around trees, and cross bridges with ease!

    Going downwhill was fine, the pulk stayed right behind me, and I didn't feel too much like I was being pushed down the hill.

    Going uphill was okay, but the ups on this trip were short and not too steep.
    If I were using this on more varied terrain, I would use the other harness I have, which is a mountainsmith lumbar pack with the shoulder straps attached.

    Currently, I do not have fins on the underside of this pulk, and didn't need them for this trip, but they may help under different snow/terrain conditions.

    Anyway, this was fun to build and use, and I did find hauling 60 lbs. more efficient than packing 60lbs.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Wolfgang's Avatar
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    Jason,

    I've been using a pulk for some years now. Your sled looks the same as mine except for the color. I took an old pair of alpine skis and bolted them to the bottom for better tracking. My pulls are a framework made from 7/8" dia hardwood dowels which are fastened together at the joints with 3/4" copper tube fittings (they fit together perfectly). The plastic PVC pipe that I used to use had broken several times, either due to the cold weather or just the weakness of the plastic. I also have a push handle in the rear. I have the sled reinforced in some places to add to the strength, but after several years of fine tuning, I think I have it to where I'm satisfied. I find it sometimes easier to push than to pull. I use it mostly on the flats, like Zealand Rd. and Lincoln Woods, and Wilderness Trail. I'll take a picture later and e-mail it to you.

    Wolfgang

  3. #3
    Senior Member SherpaKroto's Avatar
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    Ditto on the PVC. It will fail. It will be at the worst time. You will curse.

    I use aluminum conduit. That part of the pulk has proven to be rock solid.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Jason Berard's Avatar
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    My poles are 6' fiberglass fence posts.

  5. #5
    Senior Member SAR-EMT40's Avatar
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    It looks great.

    Mine looks almost exactly like yours also, including the color. I am using PVC for years now with no problem. I also sling my backpack and tie it in, in such a way that when there are problems with pulling it I can just put it on my back and leave the sled attached to the pack. Works great and beats the hell out of carrying winter loads on my back.

    I'm sure you will only use this to transport winter loads from now on. Either with skis or snowshoes.

    I will mention one other thing that I have that may not be common. I use a single piece of rope that goes through the PVC and through holes in the perimeter of the sled and then back through the other piece of PVC and are attached to the biners which are hooked to my belt on both sides. Makes for a pretty secure setup and distributes the load around the sled so the stress of the load is distributed around the perimeter of the sled instead of concentrated in a couple of spots.

    Looks great though.
    Keith
    "The real work of men was hunting meat. The invention of agriculture was a giant step in the wrong direction, leading to serfdom, cities, and empire. From a race of hunters, artists, warriors, and tamers of horses, we degraded ourselves to what we are now: clerks, functionaries, laborers, entertainers, processors of information."- Ed Abbey

  6. #6
    Senior Member Jason Berard's Avatar
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    pole attachment points

    I thought I'd add a few shots of the points where the poles attach to the harness and the sled.

    reinforced sled attachment


    webbing attachment to old hip belt


    pole/sled attachment

  7. #7
    Senior Member hikingfish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Berard View Post
    The only slack in my poles is at the webbing loop where the poles attach to the hip belt, and its not much, but you can feel the pulk jerk a tiny bit with every step
    I use bungie cords...they're elastic and very strong. They cushion that "jerk with everystep" you speak of!

    Fish
    Last edited by hikingfish; 03-11-2009 at 03:46 PM. Reason: Terrible english!

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