Originally Posted by wetrabbit
No floor on this boat. I may put on a scout bar later.
Here is a link to the 8.75 drop.
NRS Standard Frame Drop Side Rails at NRSweb.com
I am not going with a welded frame at this time because I want flexibility. I have a welded raft frame I bought as a rookie and there are a few things I would change if it didn't require a welder.
seems like these used to be about an inch deeper maybe they changed them since everyone was custom ordering the shallower drops to fit their inside d-rings.
If you are going all NRS, you will have either two seating options. their cross seatbar, which sits you at the height of the frame, or a drybox/cooler, which is going to sit you several inches at minimum above the frame. My opinion is your geometry is going to be all fubar, you will not be happy with the 8" NRS towers, etc.
So that being said, your drop distance is not going to affect your CG, it will only affect how well you can strap the tubes to the frame. If the drop is too low, your drings wind up touching the frame which can or cannot be an issue.
I understand what you mean about flexibility. For a first boat you have no idea how you want it setup, how your weight distribution will be, and whether you sit center, or front, or run a cooler, etc. Even once you figure that out you will probably keep tinkering with it.
Just keep in mind with the NRS frame you will probably carry an extra 30-50 lbs more than a custom designed frame (like a madcatr). Its not that much in the water but when you take off the river, it will feel like a lot when you are trying to load it on your vehicle. Also, the NRS frames have a nasty habit of "absorbing" water so be sure to either drill a weep hole or make sure you stand your frame on its end to let all the water seep out at the end of the trip/season because if ice forms it will burst through your frame pipe...
Just something to keep in mind. If you are buying a new boat you will probably have a lot of decisions regarding the tower height, what to run for oarlocks, oar length etc.
I have a newer 22.5" ocelot and am happy with a 66"W frame and 9.5' sticks. I have both a set of the universal and sport cat drops and I don't have a real preference other than I run the deeper drops when I want to go multiday.
The 6" towers are a bit low even for sitting on the frame seat crossbar, and was considering picking up the taller 8" towers, until I came across these new oarlocks.
I recently picked up a pair of pro-loks to replace the need for the cobras, oar sleeves, and oar rights. I have yet to try them on the water but they are well constructed, quiet, give quite a range of motion without binding at all, and flexibility in the setup of the oar. To boot they won't pop out as easily as a horn design, being constructed as a similar concept to the posilockers except look professionally made.
They have an extra long stainless shaft so as is with supplied ~1" bushing they provide about 1.5" extra height to my towers and if need be I can coax another two or so inches.