Bought my first raft! Do i need to buy footcups? - Mountain Buzz
 

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Old 03-13-2013   #1
 
Shelby, North Carolina
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Aug 2011
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Bought my first raft! Do i need to buy footcups?

I bought my first raft (NRS E-130) at the end of last year, but only got to use it one time before it got too cold. Now that the weather is warming back up, i'm ready to get it out and start some rafting! My question is though, do the people that sit in the very front of the raft need footcups or is there another way they can lock in their feet?

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Old 03-13-2013   #2
 
Land of Lovin, Colorado
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We don't have foot cups on our raft, when we paddle raft the paddlers jam their feet under the thwart and side of the tube to brace themselves.
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Old 03-13-2013   #3
 
Aurora, Colorado
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In a real tiny boat you can sometimes get away with having them stuff one foot between the floor and the tube up front. With your 13' they'll want footcones if you're running anything more than fairly easy class III. They're not that tough to put in yourself, and don't cost too much.
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Old 03-13-2013   #4
 
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Poundtown, Wokastan
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I do footcups up in my 13. It allows your crew to get a better purchase and more controlled power in their strokes. Also, you want to avoid having your crew jamming their feet under anything if possible.
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Old 03-13-2013   #5
 
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Evergreen, Colorado
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I have a 14' raft... What's a foot cup my crew always crushed the whitewater never needed no foot cup. But if you want to put them in wouldn't hurt but definitely not needed. Your choice.
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Old 03-13-2013   #6
 
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Kalispell, Montana
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Pretty easy to add and if you don't have a real experienced crew it will make them feel more secure which translates to them concentrating on paddling and not just hanging on.

A lot of raft companies run a center line anchored to D-rings inside both ends and at the top of the thwarts. Again, not as vital to a seasoned crew, but will make a less experienced crew more aggressive in spicy water.
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Old 03-13-2013   #7
 
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Tigard, Oregon
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Do you "need" footcups, nope. Are they nice to have yeah. I'm guessing with new boat ready to go you are just itching to get it dialed in perfect. Go for the footcups, but don't overdue it. It is nice to have two in the front, one for each paddler, two in the middle for the paddlers that do not sit with a thwart in front of them and one in the rear is nice for the person in the guide position. This thread, https://www.mountainbuzz.com/forums/f...ase-46461.html, talks a lot about footcup placement fort he guide position. When I bought my first boat I wanted to put footcups for everyone and ended up never putting any in and was just fine. Our commercial boats have 2 in the front and sometimes one in the back for the guide.
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Old 03-13-2013   #8
 
River City, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GosuPaintballer View Post
I bought my first raft (NRS E-130) at the end of last year, but only got to use it one time before it got too cold. Now that the weather is warming back up, i'm ready to get it out and start some rafting! My question is though, do the people that sit in the very front of the raft need footcups or is there another way they can lock in their feet?
I've guided paddle rafts both with and without footcones. Paddlers without tend to anchor their feet into the gutter of the raft. This has a few disadvantages. They tend to look for something to hold on to just when you need them to paddle. Plus they'll have wandering T grips as they look for a hold. The big one though is that as the trip progresses the paddlers slowly migrate onto the thwart tubes instead of staying seated on the sides of the raft, and loose power in their strokes.

Without footcups works okay. But people paddle more aggressive and confidently when they feel secure, giving your boat more power and a safer trip. Personally I have installed footcones everywhere someone doesn't have a thwart for their foot. Four total for a 14' raft.
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Old 03-13-2013   #9
 
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Portland, Oregon
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It really is up to you, your preference. Also take into consideration what type of whitewater you're running. We have a couple boats with them, a couple without. It's not really a big deal though because we run rivers that are more on the side of calm-big rapid-calm again. We paddle up to the hole, tell everybody to lean in, and try to make it out okay. If you're running rivers with a lot of longer rapids where crews are paddling through holes and stacks, it might not be a bad idea do glue them to the floor.
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Old 03-14-2013   #10
 
Winter Park/Canon City, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2009
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Foot cups up front for your paddlers, yes. They'll have more power, confidence, and are much more likely to stay in the boat when they're getting body-slammed by giant waves. I've been in boats with foot cups in the back for the guide and I'm not down. I brace one foot against the back of the thwart/side tube (not under, or say goodbye to your knee/ankle when you get launched) and the other curled back behind against the back of the boat. The foot cups just feel too limiting and it's hard to have much power for J strokes or reach for those big draws, sweeps, and C strokes with both feet forward.
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