First time Cataraft buyer with questions - Page 3 - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 08-09-2016   #21
 
Sandpoint, Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 23
Thank you for the ideas.

I have been digging through past threads here, on frames, probably should have started there.

Boise is a 12hr drive from me, that adds a lot of expense. Also, selling things is not always easy, I don't know about cataraft frames that are being passed on, but it adds to the overall expense, purchasing something that is definitely temporary. That needs to be weighed in, also. I am seeing used frames in the $800 range, maybe a few that are less.

Some of the used frames I see are obviously, primarily built for whitewater use. For me, whitewater is an exciting and new parallel for fishing access, which is why I ended up with this particular boat, but I want a frame that will be comfortable for fishing needs, meaning a cleanish floor design, and removable deck space. Perhaps there can be a removable standing rest.

I have found a loaner frame that is 72" wide, possibly too wide, that I can use while on the wait list for a welded frame. As Winter Steelhead fishing is on the menu, I will have a chance to feel this frame out. I am told that the final details of what I want can be worked out prior to manufacture, in Spring time.

I am considering, putting together a loose mock-up frame in wood, in my shop, so that I can really see all the dimensions of what I want included in the frame being built. Parts of it will just have to be extrapolated from the borrowed frame, from on the river.

Is the trade off at the point of becoming 'too wide', is added stability, but reduced maneuverability in tight quarters, as well as more friendly oars with the narrower frame? Is there more?

I know already that I do not want a NRS frame, if only for the weight savings. At the point where I need a break down frame, for a trip, I will put one together.

Funny that you mention about the cooler, as just yesterday I started messing with cooler dimensions between the tubes. I would like a cooler space built into the frame, as well as a dry box.

As far as rowing geometry, with fore/aft adjustable oar towers, maybe some adjustment in whatever is decided for a seat, hopefully a balance can be found for comfortable rowing for my girlfriend, and myself.

So far, the nitty-gritty of what makes for good frame geometry remains elusive, even the seemingly simple things like balance, proper rowing alignment, seat height, oar tower height, how they all relate, etc.


I appreciate any feedback from the community. It has the potential to save me from myself


At a certain point, you just gotta choose a line and go with it. I have til late Winter to come up with some basic parameters for a frame design. I suspect, that next Spring, there will be a new welded frame in my boat.



One other thing I am wondering about, is whether to go with a one piece frame, long enough for 2 people on the Ocelot, or whether to build 2 modules.

Also, if the pilot position should be in the rear. This is better for fishing. I did read in another thread, someone strongly suggesting otherwise, though it was unclear exactly why. Is it possible to build a frame with 2 modules, where the pilot position could be interchangeable?

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Old 08-09-2016   #22
 
wickums's Avatar
 
boise, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 11
I have a 14' ocelot with a 72x88 alley cat frame that I will attach my thigh bar, angler seat, cargo floor and a wooden casting deck (not in the picture) for the front of the cat that I built when I am going fishing. Sometimes I sit on my dry box and wedge a cooler in the back or just use the seat. When I go I usually bring 2 other fisherman because more the merrier. It can feel cramped at first with three people but after a couple beers it doesn't matter. If its just you and your girlfriend on the boat, you can replace the back angler seat with an electrofisher and still have plenty of space on that cat.

Since you do not want the NRS frame, just make sure you really know your setup if you're going with a welded frame. I dont care about the additional weight of the nrs frame since being able to modify my setup whenever I need to is a huge benefit, especially for booze cruises. But if you are only planning on day fishing trips then I dont know how much you would care about utilizing space efficiently but I personally like to sit on my dry box and have the front passenger on a cooler.

72" isnt too wide but it depends on what rivers you are going to fish. Dont worry about stability issues, the 66" or 72" is going to be rock solid and I have never felt like I had maneuverability issues with my wide frame. I row with 10.5' oars but 10' would be better for when I am fishing but I usually dont care too much about being all sneaky and stuff. It can be tight on the side channels in the SF Boise but then again, I feel like any boat is going to be tight in some of those channels.

With my cat I have always preferred to row slightly back of center when fishing as I have that additional weight up front and a passenger in the back. There is so much information on the buzz going over frame geometry and the likes but know that if you're going to sit on a dry box or cooler you will need 8" oar mounts (or taller depending on if you're a giant). I keep my oars slightly in front of my knees if they were laid out perpendicular to my body but it is all personal preference. Like you said, use the lender frame to dial in your preference so you can go from there. If you're going to build a mock wood frame you might as well just use that

I guess if you really wanted to row from the back and you had oar mounts that weren't welded to the frame you could always move them to the back of the boat if you desired but you will be wagging the front of the cat when making moves. As for adjusting the rowing position, I like sitting on the dry box because you can sit closer or farther away from the oar mounts and only need to adjust the foot bar if it needed (if it can be moved).

What I really wish I had were some side rails.
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Old 08-09-2016   #23
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,369
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris H View Post
Thank you for the ideas.

I have been digging through past threads here, on frames, probably should have started there.

Boise is a 12hr drive from me, that adds a lot of expense. Also, selling things is not always easy, I don't know about cataraft frames that are being passed on, but it adds to the overall expense, purchasing something that is definitely temporary. That needs to be weighed in, also. I am seeing used frames in the $800 range, maybe a few that are less.

Some of the used frames I see are obviously, primarily built for whitewater use. For me, whitewater is an exciting and new parallel for fishing access, which is why I ended up with this particular boat, but I want a frame that will be comfortable for fishing needs, meaning a cleanish floor design, and removable deck space. Perhaps there can be a removable standing rest.

I have found a loaner frame that is 72" wide, possibly too wide, that I can use while on the wait list for a welded frame. As Winter Steelhead fishing is on the menu, I will have a chance to feel this frame out. I am told that the final details of what I want can be worked out prior to manufacture, in Spring time.

I am considering, putting together a loose mock-up frame in wood, in my shop, so that I can really see all the dimensions of what I want included in the frame being built. Parts of it will just have to be extrapolated from the borrowed frame, from on the river.

Is the trade off at the point of becoming 'too wide', is added stability, but reduced maneuverability in tight quarters, as well as more friendly oars with the narrower frame? Is there more?

I know already that I do not want a NRS frame, if only for the weight savings. At the point where I need a break down frame, for a trip, I will put one together.

Funny that you mention about the cooler, as just yesterday I started messing with cooler dimensions between the tubes. I would like a cooler space built into the frame, as well as a dry box.

As far as rowing geometry, with fore/aft adjustable oar towers, maybe some adjustment in whatever is decided for a seat, hopefully a balance can be found for comfortable rowing for my girlfriend, and myself.

So far, the nitty-gritty of what makes for good frame geometry remains elusive, even the seemingly simple things like balance, proper rowing alignment, seat height, oar tower height, how they all relate, etc.


I appreciate any feedback from the community. It has the potential to save me from myself


At a certain point, you just gotta choose a line and go with it. I have til late Winter to come up with some basic parameters for a frame design. I suspect, that next Spring, there will be a new welded frame in my boat.



One other thing I am wondering about, is whether to go with a one piece frame, long enough for 2 people on the Ocelot, or whether to build 2 modules.

Also, if the pilot position should be in the rear. This is better for fishing. I did read in another thread, someone strongly suggesting otherwise, though it was unclear exactly why. Is it possible to build a frame with 2 modules, where the pilot position could be interchangeable?
I have a modular cat frame for fishing (2) or solo whitewater. I can send you some pics if it'll help.

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Old 08-11-2016   #24
 
Sandpoint, Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 23
Thank you for the lengthy response, Wickums.

An Electrofisher... Is that how you fish? Sounds handy sometimes


Yes, I was thinking about using a cooler, and a drybox, for the seats.

I am also leaning towards a taut mesh floor, like a catamaran, rather than a diamond plate or plywood floor, though, maybe a removable rigid floor up front for fishing. A lot of this will come together when I actually feel the boat on the water, and how stable it actually feels.

I definitely want to use this for lightweight multi-day camping, lightweight, not loaded down. The layout needs to be well thought out for efficiency, and remaining organized, empty feeling, for uncluttered fishing.

When I was speaking of rowing from the back, I meant aft of center, with the passenger up front.

Wickums, in the photo you posted, your oars fully clear the seat in front of you, correct?

Yes please, Osseus, send some photos of your setup.
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Old 08-11-2016   #25
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,369
Engel 80 is my passenger seat. The front module removes with 2 loop straps and two threaded bolts thru the welded on tabs. It's rock solid to stand on that woven floor- I highly recommend a woven seat belt webbing floor. I bought the material from Strapworks.com- be sure you tell them you need continuous webbing. My order had sections taped together on the roll. It was easy to do- It's stable, drains, doesn't snag flies much and it's light weight compared to other materials. I have a mesh stripping basket that attaches to the crossbar. My rowing position puts my oars slightly behind the midline of the raft. When I row whitewater the front comes off and I move the rowing module forward.

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Old 08-11-2016   #26
 
Sandpoint, Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 23
Cool. I had seen the woven webbing floor, and really like the concept. The frame builder I am almost certainly using, said that he does not do woven floors, but that we could make provision for one.

I thought that I could do that myself, but I know that I can sew a tramp tarp and string it tight. I have done that before. The woven floor does not look difficult, but, I have never done it. Good to see that.

I have also been thinking of ways to fix two modules together, to make for a more rigid support up front.

Thank you, Osseus.
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Old 08-11-2016   #27
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,369
Stitches & Stuff can make you a mesh tramp floor. I believe mine is stronger, more stable and doesn't snag flies. A lot cheaper, too.

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Old 08-11-2016   #28
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,369
You can see more woven floors on the Sotar and DRL River Gypsies sites

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Old 08-11-2016   #29
 
Sandpoint, Idaho
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 23
It makes sense that it would not snag flies as badly. Had not considered that.

Sewing is no problem. I had an industrial sewing machine for years, and have sewn quite few things. Tarps, shade awnings, and tramp floors among them.

I think I like the woven floor better, at least in concept. I will probably plan for that.

Thanks for the input.
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Old 08-11-2016   #30
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,369
Studded wading boots are no problem, btw

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