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New square tubing for Otter fish houses?


KatKrazy

Question

My buddy just bought a new Otter lodge last week. When he was assembling it he had to deburr many of the holes and rough edges. I thought this was very poor quality but sometimes that happens. When he tried to collapse the poles, 2 of the 4 locked up and would not collapse. Otter customer service recommends lubing the poles with a WD-40 type lubricant(which he did). Otter is sending him new poles. My question is does anyone else have an Otter with square tubing that works great, poor or otherwise? I'm not sure I want to buy one if this is going to happen now or 2-5 yrs from now.

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I bought a new Otter Lodge with all the gizmos.
I read the directions and there were stickers on the poles that warned that you should use a lubricant before assembly or jamming would occur.I did and had no problems.
If you slide both poles together at the same time and lubricate you should have no problems.

------------------
Minnesota River Guided Fishing
www.mnriverguidedfishing.com
NPAA #863

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I also purchased an Otter with square tubing. I did have problems until I used some silicon spray. Now they extend and contract real nice.

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i took the polishing grinder to it!.......
slides like a dream now!.

are you guys satisfied with the otters?.

[This message has been edited by joshb (edited 11-28-2003).]

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I had a Clam 5600 that had square tubing for the end verticals. I cussed the telescoping square tubes every time I set them up and brought them down. Moisture condenses inside and they freeze. There also is a lot of binding. When they changed to round tubing with bushings last year, I purchased a complete new frame and replaced it. Works like a champ now. I am really suprised that Otter changed their design to square.

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I wiull never ever own another otter, not a happy camper..Paul

------------------
Paul Rohweller
Pine to Prairie Guide Service
218-962-3387 home
701-261-9525 cell
[email protected]
N.P.A.A. 425
Quality Bait and Tackle, Detroit Lakes Mn
www.scenictackle.com
North Country Outdoors Radio 99.3 fm
http://fishingminnesota.com/pinetoprairie

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i love my otter. alittle silicone on the shafts and make sure they stay even when opening or closing tent.im even able to open and close by my self.the problem is aluminum does not slide well on aluminum.

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As noted above, you should have no issues if you lubricate the poles (as stated on the stickers on the poles).

So far I like the square tubing better than the round tubing that I had in my USL. The Otters are top notch in my mind. You'll be hard pressed to find a better quality portable shelter.

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Just got done putting my Otter together. I took the time and filed the pole and lube, works smooth. Otter could take the time and clean the poles as they know there's been a problem. I think its the best out there. Can't beat the sled.

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Well I am going to disagree with the guys that are claiming how good the Otter Houses are. I too have put together one of their new houses with the square tubing. Not a good idea in my opinion. If the poles do not slide down exactly square then the inside pole will be gouge by the pole sliding into it. I too ended up filing and grinding to get the thing together. Then another thing I think about is what happens when you fish on a -20 day and the entire house frosts up resulting in water running onto the poles. Think them flat against flat surfaces are just going to break free when they are froze together? IF they do get frosted there better not be even a light layer of ice on them or you won’t get it closed. Unlike the round pipes they had that you could just twist to break them loose you will not be able to do this with the flat ones. Last thing, if you have to lube the poles what do you get on your hands each time you set it up and should they be that tight that they HAVE to be lubed to work? Otter has made some good houses in the past but this was not one of their better moves IMHO.

This will be my second year with the Polar houses and I have had no problems with workmanship or materials in their houses or sleds. They have double dipped their canvas to prevent the “pin holes” that appear in the canvas, have put on a longer apron and their customer service has been very good in the past two years that I have worked with them. I am running the four man houses and found them very superior for my fishing needs.

Jeff
[email protected]

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I just used my Otter Lodge for the first time yesterday. The winds were really nasty and I wanted to see what this house can do.

I really liked the strength on the square tubing. The house opened and closed with no issues. It is built like no other portable I have ever fished in and it took the strong winds in stride. I can't wait to fish again with this house.

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I'm having issues with the realllly cheezy canvas they're using. The stuff tears so easily. Where it folds between the poles on the ends when collapsed mine is all tore up, good if you like looking at patches..Bottom line is it shouldn't happen, It gets used but not abused. Why dont they make their canvases out of the same stuff they make their covers out of? much better stuff. Until they get this issue resolved plus the square pole thing proves itself better than round I wont be buying another otter..My 2 cents Paul

------------------
Paul Rohweller
Pine to Prairie Guide Service
218-962-3387 home
701-261-9525 cell
[email protected]
N.P.A.A. 425
Quality Bait and Tackle, Detroit Lakes Mn
www.scenictackle.com
North Country Outdoors Radio 99.3 fm
http://fishingminnesota.com/pinetoprairie

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There's a guy here at work who had the same problems and had to deburr the tubing. He's also getting new tubing sent to him. I would think if you spend $400+ on a portable, the tubing would be deburred. I fished out of an otter quite a bit last winter and never had a single problem. They're great quality portables, pretty heavy duty, but I won't be buying a new one untill they go back to round tubing.

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I think the canvas Otters have is the most heavy duty on the market. One thing you must do is make sure the canvas doesn't get pinched in between the bracket and poles when folding up. I've had one of my Otters for many years and it's still like new.

The square poles are stronger. I don't know if plastic bushings are in the pole ends. I lift and lower my poles from the top, above my head, so no lube would get on my hands anyhow.

To each his own but, I'll stick with my Otters.

[This message has been edited by Dave (edited 12-02-2003).]

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The fabric (ice armour,I think) that the new fish traps are made from is way better than any of the canvas fabrics out there. It wont tear no matter how hard you try

------------------
I fish, therefore I am.

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Is the ice armor new to fish traps because I have seen plenty that look like a patchwork quilt. I have an otter that I bought used and it has some holes in it but no big deal patched them up and it is as good as new. I agree I think that the Square tubes are unnecessary there was good strength with the round tubes like I have I can see where there would be a tendency for them to jamb up. I guess if you used them alot they are going to get holes in them there is no way around that. Everything used shows wear. I love my otter and yes it is heavy but I know it is stronger than the others out there.

------------------
Grip it and Rip it

IFFWalleyes
I Fish For Walleyes
[email protected]

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Wow- Thanks guys for all of the input. I did some checking around for other portables and (in my opinion) this is what I found. Otter still makes the best sled without question. Canvas Plus in Rogers makes the Polar Sport that has a heavier canvas than Otter with a similar sled to Otter (but not as good) for the same price as the Otter Lodge. Canvas Craft in Anoka uses the Otter Sled and puts their original Otterskin canvas and pole setup (very similar to the old Otter round tubing) using the same 11 oz. canvas as Otter. The Canvas Craft sled/canvas combos will save you about $20-$30 over Gander Mountain's price. Shoremaster of Fergus Falls makes some similar Otter knockoff's at compareable prices but I haven't looked at one of those in person yet.

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Just had to throw my 2 cents in here on the subject. I have owned 2 Frabills,2 shoremasters and 2 clams. All what I thought was very good quality. I just got done assembling and otter 2 with the new square tubing with otter swivel padded seats and a cover. This is by far the best built portable that I have owned. I think the square tubing will out-perform any round tubed house. It went together easy, fit was perfect and the canvas is heavy duty. I found no burrs or binding what so ever. I did lube the poles per instructions and they slide perfect. I really like the new snap track that attaches the canvas to the tub. Should be really warm. Can't wait to get it out for it's first outting. But please, this is just my opinion. Hey, it's also viking purple. Don't know if thats good or bad. LOL

[This message has been edited by tightlines (edited 12-11-2003).]

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Tightlines,

Did you go with the lodge?

Awesome house and plenty of room to fish 2.

Sounds like your house went together as easy as mine did. I didn't have any problems with my poles or anything else. I've had mine on the ice 5 times this year and I still feel like a kid with a new toy. smile.gif

------------------
Paul
[email protected]
Marcum
Otter Outdoors

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Hey Paul:
I ended up buying the Otter 2 Medium cabin because I will be chasing crappies with other guys that have there own 1 man portables, and I didn't feel I needed the extra room, especialy with my new shack for lounging.I am really impressed with the quality and I especially like the swivel cushioned seats. I too feel like a kid at Christmas with having 2 brand new shacks.How lucky can a guy get.

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Good Choice!!!

I fished the cabin all of last year. Great shack for mobility and for 1 guy. I did find it hard for 2 guys to do any serious fishing out of though!!! Just seemed there wasn't enough room.

Love those swivels seats smile.gif

------------------
Paul
[email protected]
Marcum
Otter Outdoors

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I would have bought the lodge too if I would be fishing two a lot. I will probably take my wife once or twice during early and late ice. She is pretty petite at 115lbs. You been catching any eye's or crappies Paul?

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Tight,

Early ice Eyes for me. Fishings been pretty good the last 2 weeks so haven't had to resort to the panfish option yet. grin.gif

Also still getting in a little open water action. Only in Minnesota can you have the best of both worlds grin.gifgrin.gifgrin.gifgrin.gifgrin.gif

------------------
Paul
[email protected]
Marcum
Otter Outdoors

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I just purchased an otter lodge at the st.paul ice show. it set up pretty easy, but i am worried about the square tubing locking up due to frozen condensation. my only complaint is that whoever packed the hardware shorted me two nylon washers. that was easy enough to remedy. i haven't had an opportunity to hit the ice yet, i live in southern minnesota no quality ice yet. thorne bros shot me a pretty good deal at the ice show.

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I really like the snap on canvas trim.I haven't seen anything like it.Its will certainly keep out those drafts out.
I am not to worried about the tubing freezing up.With a little lubricant on the poles, frost will have a hard time forming or at least sticking inside the poles.

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I used silicone spray instead of WD40 and when I push the buttons in to lower the poles, they slide down by themselves. Very slick. I'm not worried a bit. Still a great shack.

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It seems the square tubing does provide a much more solid structure. I'm very impressed with how strong it feels, should help things in the wind.

As far as the tubing not sliding, I don't notice it any worse or better than the conventional round tubing on my fish trap. Both are aluminum/aluminum and both will stick some if not lubricated.

The canvas on the Otters is of very high quality. I can't imagine anyone not being satisfied with the canvas on those - I had no problems with the canvas on my fishtrap with a little TLC, which is of lesser quality for sure.

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I think the square tubing will pay in the end. Currently, I have a fish trap 2, about 5 years old. Very happy with it. The round poles are starting to get harder to push-up, as they are sticking. I have sprayed lub on the poles, which helped a little. It still doesn't work like the first couple of years I owned it. Next year I will get the Otter with the square poles.

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I bought the Lodge last year, round poles.

I have had problems from DAY ONE with poles binding inside each other. I did lube all of the poles at installation, again last year, and again this year. I have used it 3x now this year and 2 sets of poles are completely jammed.

I just took it apart tonight in the garage, one pole pair was so gouged up it will not go back together.

Otter will be hearing from me next week. Good thing it is going to be very cold , I won't be using my portable anyway.

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