Product Test No. 41: TARP-OFF

Published in the May 2009 Issue May 2009

Back in the Fall 2007 issue of PDB, we covered a little pocket-sized gadget called the Tarp Tool, a simple wooden tool that easily snaps tarp buttons on the boat, saving your fingers from wear and tear. What goes up must come down, right? Or in this case, what goes on must come off.

From the makers of the revolutionary Tarp Tool is its complementary companion-Tarp-Off. While the Tarp Tool easily snaps tarps into place, the Tarp-Off does the exact opposite. Utilizing one of the most basic of all machines-the lever-it quickly and easily pulls off the canvas without cutting or puncturing your cover. Tarp-Off fits compactly around the snap. Made of engineered plastic, Tarp-Off is rugged enough to handle your toughest snaps. Because of this tool, you'll save your nails from being broken and your tarps from being marred.

The only caveat is that the space surrounding the snap has to be large enough to give you the leverage to slide the prong-shaped tool around the button. On the boat I tested this tool on, there was a boat lip on one side that jutted out enough that I couldn't fit the tool around it. The other snaps were not a problem, but the tool was unable to reach the snaps immediately above this lip. However, even if you don't use it for all your snaps, it'll make the work much quicker and easier with the $7.95 tool.

 It'll just be a matter of flying through the ones you can do, then going back (or having a crew member behind you), taking care of the remaining snaps the old-fashioned way-with his fingers. It's times like these when you gotta take one for the team.

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