Originally Posted by Tiggy
So whats the deal with the "extruded" oar tower vs the "rainbow" oar tower?
(Yes, this will be my first raft) lol
The extruded (NRS) oar towers are more adjustable than the rainbow, which is static for height and fore/aft location. Others can talk more about the rainbows, I don't actually have them so I am no expert. I used NRS extruded for a while and they are good and adjustable. I have now moved to DRE towers since I need more height than even the tall NRS since I sit on my cooler.
The NRS attachments are bomber, and so are the frames, you can't go wrong, and they will customize. My frame is a combo of NRS and speedrail fittings. speedrail are more customizable for those putting their own frame together, and they are cheaper. My personal opinion is I use NRS fittings in the main structural members, a couple of set screws on the speedrail just don't make me comfortable. however, a lot of folks use those and everyone has their own personal preference.
Do you think you'll get into customizing your frame down the road? If so, speedrail will be more adjustable for you. If you like to tinker and play with stuff, you'll likely customize your frame. If you like to use things as-is, you probably won't.
NRS seats aren't as space efficient for big gear hauling since they are welded onto a bar. You can work around that, but for gear hauling many folks end up sitting on top of a dry box or cooler, or platform over a storage bay.
My first boat, I had NRS because that's what I found used. Aluminum is lighter, but some folks say the strong steel requires less metal and so the same size frame ends up weighing about the same. I'm not sure about that.
So if you want to haul gear, you might look elsewhere than NRS, but for simple day trips their frames work well. And NRS will bend over backwards to help you, some people don't like them as being too big, but they've helped me a lot with rigging ideas, even those that don't result in a sale for them.