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Winter Camping Discussion => Sleds and Toboggans => : Misfit December 09, 2011, 06:31:05 AM

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: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Misfit December 09, 2011, 06:31:05 AM
I've just been looking into a toboggan or sled for hauling camping gear and was wondering if anyone in the Ontario area has found a place to buy the plastic from, and made their own toboggan and also the difficulty of making it.  I'm trying to save a few bucks so i'm interested in making my own.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Harlan December 09, 2011, 08:00:22 AM
Misfit, I just ordered 3 blanks of 10' x 3' UHMWPE and will begin ripping blanks when it comes in. Let me know if you want 1 and we'll figure something out.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: lookinnorth December 09, 2011, 09:18:49 AM
Not sure what part of Ont. your in but I get mine from "Piedmont Plastics" 

http://www.piedmontplastics.com/products/engineering-solutions/uhmw-pe-%E2%80%93-ultra-high-molecular-weight-polyethylene-%E2%80%93-tivar,-polystone.aspx (http://www.piedmontplastics.com/products/engineering-solutions/uhmw-pe-%E2%80%93-ultra-high-molecular-weight-polyethylene-%E2%80%93-tivar,-polystone.aspx)

Personally I find umwpe plastic a little easier to work with then hdpe, uhmwpe seem to be a little more flexable and doesn't require any heat to make the front curl.

This is from Grey co products talking about the two plastics, http://www.greycoproducts.com/uhmw-sheets/ (http://www.greycoproducts.com/uhmw-sheets/)

UHMWPE

UHMW, or Ultra-High-Molecular-Weight Polyethylene (also known as (UHMWPE) is manufactured by the world leader in the industry, Quadrant EPP, is superior ultra high molecular weight sheet that is extremely tough as well as incredibly abrasion resistant. With very low co-efficient of friction, this material is best used in rough duty applications. As with most plastics, care must be taken when machining to ensure dimensional stability is maintained. Typical applications include; most wear applications, hopper liners, bearings, bushings, pipe saddles, conveyor guides and numerous others. Various modified forms are also used to broaden the scope of applications 

UHMW is the slipperiest plastic
anywhere in the market. That’s
what makes it the material of
choice for applications like truck
liners, dry slides and chutes.
Calculate the cost savings by
using UHMW to replace rollers,
bearings and other mechanical
forms of material transit.

HDPE

HDPE (High-density polyethylene) is the most common plastic sheet on the market. It is also very durable in the harsh northern Canadian climate. HDPE is available with very high UV protection to withstand many years in direct sunlight. This type of sheet is commonly known as puck board, and is used in applications like automotive racking, general commercial manufacturing, food industry, fishing industry, marine applications, home and garden, transportation, agricultural stabling and buildings. King Star Board or Boar Board is also an HDPE product, which is of even higher quality. HDPE sheets are available in many different colors, thicknesses and sheet sizes.

There is a difference ;)
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: acurrier December 09, 2011, 09:31:32 AM
When working with either UHMWPE or HDPE is the plastic flexible enough to get the curve in the front simply by tying it down, or do you need to heat it to bend it?
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: sethwotten December 09, 2011, 11:28:31 AM
I've never done it, but I think that you will need to apply heat. Check out these posts that Hoop made last year on building his own toboggan......

http://www.wintertrekking.com/community/index.php?topic=1229.0 (http://www.wintertrekking.com/community/index.php?topic=1229.0)
http://www.wintertrekking.com/community/index.php?topic=1232.0 (http://www.wintertrekking.com/community/index.php?topic=1232.0)
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Scott December 09, 2011, 12:06:34 PM
I made my own UHMWPE toboggan and also an HDPE toboggan kit from Black River Sleds.  The UHMWPE sled definitely slides better - I've tested them side by side on many trips over the last 4 winters.  I'd suggest getting UHMWPE if you can.  By a big sheet and make two sleds and sell the third blank or buy that blank from Harlan.  I used red oak for the crossbars, part of old dresser for the lip curl, and did not need to heat the curl that much.  I assembled it in a buddy's shop and placed the plastic in front of his woodstove for an hour and it bent into position with no problems.  You need to get a countersink bit for the stainless steel screws that are inserted into the crossbars from the bottom.  As for tapering the sled, that's up to you.  I tapered mine and the Black River sled came pre cut and tapered.  I'm not convinced it makes that much of a difference.  On a rigid wood sled it would help out but on the flexible plastic ones it's not that noticeable - they snake along in your snow shoe trail easily. 

Here's some old pics from my previous house when i made it.

(http://i127.photobucket.com/albums/p142/scott_killarney/Toboggan/Toboggan2.jpg)

(http://i127.photobucket.com/albums/p142/scott_killarney/Toboggan/Toboggan1.jpg)

And here's a pic loaded up how I use it now (CDN army hoochie and conover bag on top)

(http://i127.photobucket.com/albums/p142/scott_killarney/New%20Years%20Trip/IMG_2078.jpg)

If you go ahead let us know, lots of lessons learned on here about assembly and we can provide some tips and timesavers. 


       
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: lookinnorth December 09, 2011, 12:12:53 PM
Of the three uhmwpe toboggans I've made I used a heat gun on the first one and didn't really need it, on the advice of other toboggan builders I built the next two and didn't need any heat to make the front curl but then I haven't bent them back much more then 90 degrees, (all are 1/4" uhmwpe) uhmwpe has memory, that is, if you bend it into a curl and don't secure it, it will eventually return to or near to its original position, in the case of a toboggan, flat. HDPE/puckboard or at least what I know as hdpe is a lot stiffer then uhmwpe and although I've never done anything with it other then use it to make a bed for our chop saws, it is my understanding that heat is needed when making the curl. For me, UHMWPE is the way to go, white uhmwpe is sometimes called virgin and has no or very little uv protection but the black recycled (tivar?) is priced a little cheaper.

 (http://inlinethumb34.webshots.com/46817/2474882570100296382S600x600Q85.jpg) (http://good-times.webshots.com/photo/2474882570100296382EMPUOj)

(http://inlinethumb23.webshots.com/3542/2756602160100296382S600x600Q85.jpg) (http://good-times.webshots.com/photo/2756602160100296382oPuzDj)

its not all about work :)
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: acurrier December 09, 2011, 12:14:14 PM
I'm in the process of ordering a tent/stove, so I'll need a good toboggan. I like making things myself, so this might be a good project. Not sure whether it would be better to start from a blank or use a kit though. I'll have to give it some thought.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Scott December 09, 2011, 12:21:50 PM
I'm in the process of ordering a tent/stove, so I'll need a good toboggan. I like making things myself, so this might be a good project. Not sure whether it would be better to start from a blank or use a kit though. I'll have to give it some thought.

As mentioned above, I've done both.  Making my own was cheaper, more rewarding but took longer.  The kit was a bit more expensive but simple to assemble.  Black River includes good instructions with the kits. 
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: kie December 09, 2011, 01:45:36 PM
Hi Misfit,

Joining the conversation late, but I made 3 toboggans last year from HPDE and am probably making another 3 or 6 this year for guiding use.  Perhaps upgrading to UHWM-PE, but still considering as it is twice the cost...

Anyways, I picked up the HPDE at Johnston Industrial Plastics in TO.  http://www.johnstonplastics.com/mech_hdp.htm (http://www.johnstonplastics.com/mech_hdp.htm)
Cost was ~$130 (before tax and cutting) for a 48" x 120" x 1/4" sheet.  They ripped it into 1/3s for me for $15, leaving me with the 3 blanks practically ready to be outfitted (after a bit of rough tapering).  Available there in both natural and black (UV protection). 

Very, very easy process.  As Scott mentioned, get a countersink bit for the s.s. screws from the bottom.  Buy the screws from Brafasco or Fastenal, etc and you will save a bundle over regular hardware stores.  Don't know what part of ON you're in, but I bought the ash in Belleville-area and that was also a lot less than I found it for here in Sudbury. 

Good luck,
Dave

PS. Scott, that's a great looking headboard, I'll have my eyes peeled for something similar next time I'm doing the thrift-store circuit!


: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: ravinerat December 09, 2011, 04:28:12 PM
I'm really liking the looks of these toboggans. I use this material for runners of some of my larger toboggans. My old neighbour was able to bring some cut offs home for me 6'x2".  I'll have to check what one pc would cost.

I like the way the pail fits under the front curve.

So i would be interested if someone is buying a sheet and needs to split a sheet three ways. I'm in the Barrie area.

RR
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Malek December 09, 2011, 05:46:58 PM
Also late joining in here.
Got my plastic at this location:

Plastruct Canada
4305 Spring Creek Rd RR 1, Vineland, ON L0R 2C0
(905) 563-4000

They had some of everything when I was there last.
Got a 1/3 sheet of white UHMWPE and have never looked back.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: theDuck December 09, 2011, 06:19:32 PM
Look up plastic suppliers or plastic in the yellow pages of any large city. I got mine in London.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: buddhabelly December 10, 2011, 12:42:17 PM
Hey harlan,

Mind if I ask how much those blanks cost ? I presume they have other sized sheets as well ?


thanks,

BB
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: thunderbox December 10, 2011, 01:37:06 PM
I bought my sheet here , they will rip a 4x10 sheet down to 3 equal sizes for a small charge

http://www.polyzone.com/ (http://www.polyzone.com/)

It's located in Vineland Ont
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Harlan December 10, 2011, 02:01:44 PM
Hey BB,

I have them available at $125 for a 10' x 16" blank with smoothed edges...ready to go!

: hockey sticks and tie-downs
: Ted December 10, 2011, 05:04:01 PM
Got my uhmwpe at a local plastics store here in Ottawa.
For cross pieces, I just went down to the local hockey rink and picked up broken hockey sticks. :)

Lots of fun building your own. The only real interesting part is the tie-downs. Some people like rope, some like webbing and some like bungee cord.
I've tried all three and all have the idiosyncrasies  with rope being my least favorite. I've been using webbing in the past.
But this year moving to a combination of webbing and bungee just for a little experimenting and fun.

Cheers Ted
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: buddhabelly December 10, 2011, 05:57:27 PM
Webbing is a great idea, I have some 1/2 inch that's got a reflective strip in it as well. What size rope were you using Ted ? Thought rope and some prussiks would be a great way to fine tune the lash down so it was adjustable.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Ted December 12, 2011, 11:12:33 AM
I've used 5mm but only because I bought an entire 100m roll at a close out sale. Bigger would be better.

A  couple of comments based solely on my personal experiences. Anyone jumping in with "this works well" would be appreciated. 

I find rope knots can be a bit of a pain to tie and untie sometimes. prussiks along the fixed side ropes are great.  A metal ring on the prussik is handy.
When using rope, a good slip knot and long tail that doesn't require any finger dexterity works well. Un-tying a frozen knot can be a real challenge as are those a small plastic snap buckles.
Most systems work well in cold weather but a little freezing rain/wet snow can pretty well jamb anything. I got so frustrated one time that I had my belt knife out before I calmed down a little
I'd love to find an outlet for those long tailed webbing buckles that BlackRiver uses on their sleds. They look perfect for freezing rain or wet snow conditions.
My version of an ideal system would be everything wrapped in a body bag, 1/2" webbing using BlackRiver style buckles, and bungees for securing top load stuff like my 7' long chisel, skis/snowshoes.
If no BlackRiver style buckles then rope and bungee.

To get around frozen knots, I've used smooth sticks to hold rope loops together.  One loop does get tied off with a truckers hitch but with a stick holding the two loops. A quick pull on the stick and the whole thing falls apart.  I can then undo the hitch at my leisure. Rope and stick is the fastest system that I've ever used and came in handy when setting up camp at the end of a long day nearing sunset.

Neither rope nor webbing will flex when the toboggan does.
In short dips or hills, the toboggan does a lot of flexing so the load can sometimes loosen and shift a bit.
Wrapping the entire load "body bag" style, like Lookingnorth shows in one of his photos, really limits shifting and snow collection.
Bungees do a great job of flexing, always keeping the load tight.
On the other hand, bungees can be quite dangerous if accidentally let loose then stretched. That's something that can happen when hands are cold.
My ophthalmologist neighbour thinks that bungees should be outlawed as he often sees the results of bungee hooks destroying eyes.

If we ever get some snow around here, I'm going to try both rope and bungees.  Rope for holding the stove at the far back and my sleeping system/clothes container at the front.
Then bungees in the middle to hold everything else. Bungees will also give me fast access to my ice chisel which I use as a sounding probe on ice, shovel, skis or snowshoes.

(As usual, a typical Ted long-winded answer to a simple question. :-[ )
Ted

: apologies
: Ted December 12, 2011, 11:14:39 AM
My apologies to Scott. It's his photo that shows the bivy container.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Grizzly Adam December 12, 2011, 11:47:38 AM
Grizz here last year I used a bungee system on my toboggan I used a spool of 1/4" bungee to go around the perimeter of the sled anchored on the cross braces and tied as to make a rectangular loop and in between these braces i placed a small karibiner on one side so when you wrap all your gear in a tarp or whatever you choose you simply grab corresponding bungee points and stretch over the load and clip this way there is a infinite way to adjust the load and is quite safe "no snapping hooks in the face" and it forms a nice X pattern across the load to lash irregular items  or things close at hand " lunch, day pack rifle ax saw ext" sorry don't have any pics but if you have any questions PM me and I will give personal contact info Cheers Grizz.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: acurrier December 12, 2011, 01:21:21 PM
I'm planning on making a canvas bag/cover for my toboggan, and I was thinking about going with a setup using webbing and double rings (like a double ring belt) to secure the flap. Pretty sure it will be easier to open in the cold than a frozen knot...my only concern is having fingers freeze to the metal.

I'll be putting an order in with www.strapworks.com (http://www.strapworks.com) for my webbing and rings. Their prices are very reasonable, and the shipping was pretty quick. Good selection, but the 3/4" plastic buckles I ordered last time were a little flimsy. I'd want to order something a little more solid next time.

If you place an order with this company there is an option to order a free bag of scrap webbing. Most of the pieces I got were about 1' long, but there were a couple of webbing rolls in there that were 5-10' long. Only cost is added weight for shipping.
: Re: Anyone in Ontario make their own HDPE toboggan? Where to find material.
: Grizzly Adam December 12, 2011, 05:01:31 PM
Hey man don't worry to much about freezing to the buckle this usually only happens if skin is damp or wet I ice climbed for years with all kinds of metal even using my mouth to hold stuff and no problems LOL not like tongue to lamp post as kids did dumb [email protected]#$ back then  LOL Should work fine and easy to DE-ice if needed Cheers Grizz
: sticking to metal
: Ted December 13, 2011, 11:37:08 AM
I always wear a pair of unlined leather gloves (deerskin I think) to load and unload the toboggan.
No sticking issues with anything including handling the steel stove.

Occasionally, I slip on a pair of thin wool under gloves first if it's really cold.
These gloves and replaceable liners are my favourites to wear when on the move - pulling or exploring.

fwiw,
ted