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Old 04-06-2012   #1
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,098
Webbing a cataraft floor

Hi folk- I'm getting a custom frame done for my new Sotar tubes- and I want to web the floor in the rowing compartment and the passenger module. Does anyone have any advice- and a link for the appropriate material and length of strapping? Thnx

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Old 04-06-2012   #2
no tengo
mania's Avatar
Baytopia, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1876
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,723
first be sure you are not creating an entrapment hazard for yourself (don't allow gaps in the floor). next someone like jan at stitches-n-stuff can sew you any size you want. third i have seen just about every mesh cataraft floor rip at some point. they just aren't meant to support that kind of dynamic weight.

my advice is to go for aluminum or marine plywood.

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Old 04-06-2012   #3
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,098
Not going for sewn mesh- I'm going to weave nylon/polyester webbing- likely 1" wide, depending on what I learn here.
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Old 04-06-2012   #4
no tengo
mania's Avatar
Baytopia, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1876
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,723
How are you going to keep the weave from opening up if you stand on it wrong and then you flip and your foot is stuck in webbing and you die?
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Old 04-06-2012   #5
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,098
The frame is being designed for webbing- 1 1/2" maximum gaps at the edges- nothing to "open up". You put a size 13 sandal on a 1" mesh with no gaps and it's not got any chance of going thru. People with small feet may perish- but that's the risk you take if you aren't taking a turn at the oars.

This is the type of floor I'm planning- but not the actual frame:

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Old 04-06-2012   #6
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1986
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 161
If you want a floor in your cat, get a raft. Seriously, one of the major safety benefits of a cat is when its upside down it turns into a monkey bars with 4000 lb of flotation. If you install a floor then you can't easily climb into the cockpit and quickly re-flip. I'm guessing that you are the type of cat boater with a 100 qt cooler, drybox and extra person. A raft is far better suited for this application. You don't buy a Corvette to go camping and haul a trailer. Get a cat for each of your passengers, teach 'em to row, and slim the gear pile down to less than 50 lb per person.

Mania is right, woven floors are an entrapment hazard. I generally think rafters overplay the whole entrapment card, but a woven cat floor is dumb. Webbing stretches when its wet and you stand on your floor to try and highside as your overloaded cat flips in some hole. Your foot slides between layers of webbing or opens up a hole and you die.
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Old 04-06-2012   #7
Ashland and Lake Almanor, state of jefferson
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 81
my frame is webbed like that from sotar. it's the bomb. the weave is welded closed.
0 entrapment hazard. going on 4th year with 10+ trips a year. still tighter than your sister
great for camping frame.
and i don't lose beers/whatfors/jefferies through the floor.
now my 14'aire playcat no floor. but wife wants poly-max floor in rowers bay only
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Old 04-06-2012   #8
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,098
Jebus- You're making umpteen assumptions about MY intentions for this boat. It's a 13' cat day boat for fishing- class II/III I'm not headed to the friggin' Zambezi. 90% of the time you can stand up and not get your hips wet in the rivers I fish. How is a tightly webbed floor more of an entrapment issue than the floor of your raft? This is being built by one of the most experienced custom shops in the nation- entrapment has been considered all through the design. How is it harder to grab a webbed floor when flipping the cat over than it would be to "grab" a smooth raft floor? I don't want "monkey bars"- I want a floor to catch the shit I drop when playing guide for my angler. Next year's investment in this addiction will be a 14' multi day tripping raft-
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Old 04-06-2012   #9
Wondervu, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 366
The photo looks more like seat belt webbing than strap material to me. Here is a link to Seattle fabrics, a great source of all kinds of webbing material...
Webbing for Purses, Bags, Backpacks, Leashes and More!

In the photo it looks like the webbing is about the size of the O.D. on the tubes, that would make it more like 2". If your floor needs to be 24" X 30" you will need something like 20 yards of webbing (for a single layer weave, 40 for a double weave). Thats a lot of pulling with a very long piece of material. the wider the webbing the less weaving and the total length of meterial would be shorter...

Your example looks a lot like the weaving pattern used for cloth tape shaker chairs. here is a good 'how to' for a chair seat.

Learn. How to Weave a Chair Seat With Fabric. - ChristyNelson.net

I would avoid the nylon webbing, especially the tubular style, it will stretch a lot when it gets wet.
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Old 04-06-2012   #10
no tengo
mania's Avatar
Baytopia, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1876
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,723
It sounds like you had already decided exactly what you need before you asked your question why don't you just have sotar make your floor for you? and I am not trying to be a dick here it looks like a decent floor for what you want once you described your intended use.

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