We are often asked how to attach a rescue sled to a personal watercraft, Jet Ski, Wave Runner or Sea Doo. And, unfortunately, there is not one suitable way of doing this, as the PWC manufacturers did not design their vehicles with this accessory in mind.
Extractor made the ‘original’ pwc rescue sled in winter of 1991 and patented the water rescue sled back in 1993. Several revisions have been created over the years to improve durability, performance and adapt the sled to be able to connect with ever-changing hull designs of various personal watercraft. Current sled designs have features that take into consideration the many different makes and models of personal watercraft. .
Not all personal watercraft makes and models are ideal for connecting and using a rescue sled. For the models that do, the optimum connection between personal watercraft and sled differ slightly. Some pwcs already come with hard points ideal for towing, and some pwcs still require installation of hard points onto the rub rails, seat housing, transom or stern in order to provide the most stable and secure connection. And, some of the latest Sea Doo designs have failed to incorporate design features into their models suitable for attaching a sled or installing hardware for accommodating one. Any rescue sled manufacturer or supplier who tells you that they offer a rescue sled that will universally and optimally attach to personal watercraft without drilling or installing some hardware is wrong.
Taking the time to properly mount your sled is critical: a sled that is too loose or too tight on the transom above the jet, can affect maneuverability and stability. In the worst-case scenario, this could damage your boat, the sled itself, or cause serious injury.
When mounting your sled, you will always want to keep three points for attaching the stern. Some connection systems utilize a solid hitch connection and others use soft rigging, like rope or webbing. The solid hitch or the middle rope become the main tow point. Ideally the shorter the connection is between the sled and pwc, the more the board will be stable in the water.
Extractor has been in the business for nearly 30 years, and has worked alongside rescue professionals and military Special Forces during that entire time. The best thing to do is get in touch with us if you have questions, and we can provide you with best practice tips based on your specific jet ski or wave runner model and sled.
The Jet Rescue Ski, or Rescue Water Craft agenda can be linked to all major jet brands including Sea-doo, Yamaha, Kawasaki, and Honda.
Extractor Rescue Sleds
The Extractor Jet Ski Rescue Sled is the result of 30 years of experience, manufacturing several revisions of sleds, using different materials and construction methods along the way. Ultimately, the end users and customers have driven the demand for the current design, using the most durable materials, which can be molded into a hull shape that optimizes functionality for being towed behind a watercraft, which do not delaminate from water pressure working on glued seams, rot from sitting in the salt water or sun, and are recyclable, so they don’t end up polluting the ocean or taking up space in land-fills. The plastic is easily repaired and welded, minimizing time out of commission. The average life span for one of these sleds is 2 to 3 times over any other sled made from EPP ( Expanded Polypropylene), EPS (Expanded Polystyrene), urethane, or Polyethylene foam cores, sandwich laminated with fiberglass, spectra, Innegra or other fabric and resin systems, or heat/glue laminated to ABS or Polyethylene sheet materials.
- 8-12 proprietary molded handles, made of elastomeric injection molded resins and military spec webbing. They have been designed for an easy and secure grip, much more durable and stable than braided hose, hose tape, and rubber core.
- The handles are attached to the molded hull with stainless steel screws and washers,
And screwed into brass inserts molded into the hulls. The inserts have a pull out strength that exceeds 5000 lbs. They do not pull out like handles screwed into potted inserts secured with resin or adhesive to foam cores.
- Easy to replace HDPE Nose Bumper.
- Hulls are molded HDPE (High Density Poly Ethylene), with a 3/16 to ¼” (6-8mm) skin with a 3/8-1/2” (11-13mm) thick polyethylene rigid foam inner liner to increase stiffness and impact strength while reducing weight. Design features incorporate structural columns molded into the hull to act like keels or stringers and bulkheads do on boats and surfboards. The inner core is hollow. Air is lighter than foam. A Rockered marine hull, with reverse curve in the nose, allows the sled to rest on the pwc transom with most of the hull floating in the water. Mid length, has a concave, transitioning into the tail with vee and channels, which help create lift, provide easy transition from rail to rail in turns, and smooth tracking, without fish-tailing behind the pwc. Concave bottoms in other sled designs cause the outside rail to stick during turn transitions, flat hulls without rocker only leave about 2 ft of sled riding in the water, and cause a plowing effect. This hull is a superior design in construction and function. Crescent or U shaped tails assist with centering riders on the deck of the sled.
The various sled models weigh between 50 and 60 lbs, which is a perfect weight for riding smoothly behind the pwc without slapping or bouncing on the water like lightweight sleds that only weigh 30-40 lbs.
- Deck pads are made from 3/8” PVC rubber foam. They provide cushion, they provide excellent traction and grip, preventing sliding around on the deck, they are very tear resistant, do not fade or disintegrate in the salt water or sun like most EVA and polyethylene foam skins.
- Several PWC connection points designed into the hull for hard hitch connections or soft rigging connections, multiple bungee locations provided to accommodate different lengths of pwc transoms.
- All rigging and hardware provided