row2k Features
Rowing Hack Redux: Return of the Nylon Nut
September 24, 2020
John FX Flynn

Sure proof that a given hack is a good one? When it gets suggested back to us by a reader! The Nylon Wing Nut trick did just that, boomeranged to us by Bryan Fraser, who is himself becoming a pretty reliable source for the sort of 1x Hacking that all the single-ing going on these days call for, like his Water Bottle Holder Hack.

The heart of the hack is that a nylon wing nut is in many ways a faster, easier way to perform the really simple, but crucial, job of keeping your rigger tight to your hull than the usual nut-and-washer approach. To give ourselves full credit, here is a link to the original article - the Plastic Wing Nut Hack -- that we ran back in December of 2013.

At the time, it was an idea for eights that we picked up from famed then-UVA boatman Roger Payne, and basically a tip for speeding up team rigging and de-rigging.

It was also, truth be told, a hoped-for-fix for saving some money here and there by not having to buy - and replace - all those washers that athletes seem incapable of not dropping in the grass next to the boathouse.

Fraser, to be fair, has updated the trick a bit: threading a nylon wing nut all the way to the top of the bolt and then tightening the rigger on with a second wing-nut on the bottom. He also found a new, timely use for it: in a year when we might be doing a lot of car-topping to avoid crowds or even just boathouses altogether, this wrench-free speed rigging trick can really come in handy.

We could even see it helping out at a lot of college boathouses nowadays, where all those new singles might suddenly be in greater supply than the rack space you need to store them. Having a way to pop the riggers on and off to maximize stowage space could be a real boon there, too.

So there you have it, um, well, again: the Nylon Wing Nut Hack. Run out and get yourself some, and start saving time like a true row2k Hacker.

Have you put a row2k Hack to better use like this guy did? Share your tips - and hacks - in the comments below.

Have a great rowing hack to suggest for future inclusion here? Send it to us!

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09/24/2020  1:53:59 PM
UVA has been using the double wingnut hack for years, but another handy wingnut hack that came from a suggestion from coach Kevin Sauer has also been put into play - the wingnut top bolt. Nylon wingnuts hold a top brace as well as a bolt and lock washer, and are easy to check and hard to over tighten.

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