General / How Do You Measure Your Sled to Determine Accessory Pieces?

How Do You Measure Your Sled to Determine Accessory Pieces?

Updated on January 10, 2022 | by Austin


Sledding is a fun winter activity enjoyed by many people in the colder parts of the United States, Canada, and Europe. One question that arises when purchasing sled accessories from Straightline Performance for this enjoyable pastime is how do you know what size of a sled to buy? 

There are a few different ways to measure your sled, depending on what type of accessory you are looking for. If you are looking for a tow hitch, for example, you will need to measure the distance from the front of the sled to the back of the hitch. You will also need to measure the size of the hole in the hitch. If you are looking for a storage box, you will need to measure the length and width of your sled. 

Measuring the Track

The first thing you will need to measure is the track of the sled. This is the part of the sled that touches the ground when in use. To do this, take a piece of string or rope and measure from one end to the other. This will give you the length of your track. Make a note of this measurement as you will need it later on.

Measuring the Width

Now that you have the length of your sled’s track, you will need to measure the width. There are two ways that you can do this. You can either hold your string up against the track and mark the width on it with a pencil (be sure to use a ruler for accurate measurement), or you can lay some newspaper down on a flat surface and place one end of the track securely on top while holding it in place with something heavy such as a book. Without moving any part of it, carefully slide your new sled across the newspaper until you reach the other end. Once there, press down on the sled firmly so that all of it is touching the paper from front to back. Using a pen or pencil, mark where each end of the track is. Now that you have both the length and width of your sled’s track, you are ready to determine what type of accessory you need.

Measuring for a Tow Rope

Now that you have your track measurement, you can move on to measuring for a tow rope. To do this, you need to know how high off the ground your children or whoever will be pulling the sled will be when they are standing up straight. Measure this distance and add 6 feet to it; this will be our tow rope length. For example, if you are pulling your sled by hand and the tallest person is 5 feet tall, then this person’s hands will be approximately 2.5 feet off the ground. If adding 6 feet to that measurement results in a total of 8.5 feet high, then your tow rope should be around 9 feet long. 

Measuring for a Passenger Bar

For the next part of your calculations, you need to know how wide apart your handlebars will be. You can measure this by placing two pieces of string or rope across the width between where they are being held – just like measuring for a fence. Now take those measurements and divide them by 3; this will give you how many inches apart your passenger bar should be. For example, if your ropes are 36 inches apart, then your passenger bar would be 12 inches wide.

Measuring the Hitch

If you are looking for a tow hitch, your next task is to measure the distance between where it will be mounted on the sled. If there are no obstructions in this way, like grommets or heavy wires, then simply measure from one end of the sled to the other. Otherwise, you will need to make some room for it by removing whatever is blocking its path. Once you have measured your trail width with whatever obstacles may be present, subtract 14 inches from that measurement; this will give you how wide your hitch should be. 

Now that you have all of your measurements, it’s time to get shopping for the perfect accessory for your sled. Be sure to keep in mind the type of activity you will be using your sled for, as well as the weight of the people who will be pulling it. With a little bit of measuring and some common sense, you will be able to find just what you need to make your winter adventures even more fun.

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