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Old 03-25-2011   #1
Huntsville, Alabama
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 8
Cataraft from two SOAR 14 Canoes

I've been toying with the idea of building a gear boat out of two SOAR 14 canoes. I've looked at the volume and capacity of two SOAR 14 with a frame compared to other 14' and 16' cats. It is similar but before I start investing in another SOAR 14 and frame, etc. I wanted some feedback from the buzzards. especially Cat boaters.

Here is what I have come up with.

Pros: I already have one SOAR 14. I live in the SE so I would use the two SOARs seperately more often than a 15ft raft or cat. Very low center G. Gear could be loaded inside the SOARs and on top of the frame.

Cons: It could be a very wet ride. It would be a wide rig as the SOAR 14 is 40" wide plus I would like 30" between.

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Old 03-25-2011   #2
Bellevue, Washington
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 112
I've seen pictures of it being done with IKs before. But I wouldn't try it for what I do with my cat. What type of water are you planning on running?

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Old 03-25-2011   #3
Huntsville, Alabama
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 8
Western mid to low water III. Maybe technical 4 with a lighter load. Mostly a family float boat. Anything really technical, shallow, or narrow I wouldn't use them as a gear boat.

I can NOT see using the boats in a cat configuration on the East Coast. No real overnight trips out here.

It hard to justify owning a 14'+ gear boat in the SE.
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Old 03-25-2011   #4
Idaho, Wyoming
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 147
go to the alaska outdoor forums. there is a lot of discussion there about using pairs of aire travelers and pro pioneers as "catacanoes"
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Old 03-25-2011   #5
Chip's Avatar
SE, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,098
One concern might be that duckies with a 10 or 12-inch tube aren't as stiff as a cat tube twice that diameter. So rigged to a frame, they might have a tendency to "taco" on hitting a wave.

Inflate your duck, have two people hold a paddle shaft where you'd rig the front of the frame, and then pull up on the bow. Then you'll know.
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Old 03-25-2011   #6
Hotchkiss, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 3
SOARS bail very slowly...
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Old 03-25-2011   #7
fdon's Avatar
Christopher Creek, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1969
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 288
Those soar boats can be rigged for 3+ or 4 water as a solo or tandem setup. What is your main your goal? saving $$$? the frame and straps needed to hold the Rube thing together might cost more that some classy cat tubes alone. My suggestion: keep the ik for the times you need it and drop the cash on a cat that serves your needs. Perhaps an added moter and mount could add some spice to the idea?
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Old 03-25-2011   #8
over the horizon
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Carbondale, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 267
Agreed. If you got a narrow cat it would go down more eastern rivers than you'd think. Also on the truly mellow floats it could barge up end to end with the SOAR.
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Old 03-26-2011   #9
Bellevue, Washington
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 112
If money is not a big issue, go for a real cataraft. Look at gear haulers like the AIRE Lion or NRS River Cat. The performance will be much higher and will make for a much better family float boat.
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Old 04-06-2011   #10
Anchorage, Alaska
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 56
Alaska Raft and Kayak

Alaska Raft and Kayak - Home Page go to the preceding link and then click on "Ask Tracy". He's built a number of catacanoe frames on inflatable canoes. The site also has their phone number if you want to call and speak to Tracy - great guy. We just had the Alaska Sportsman Show and they had a catacanoe with frame on display - not too complicated and the frame set up allows you to break it down during your trip if you want/need.

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canoe, cataraft

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