Cataraft rigging options - Mountain Buzz

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Old 01-19-2015   #1
Wondervu, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 492
Cataraft rigging options

I have a 15' cat that I rig similar to the pic below, with the rower in the center.

I am curious about cats rigged with the rower foward, like this..

Is there a proper name for each style? What are the advantages of one over the other?

My boat tends to focus the waves between the tubes and the front seat gets a face full. I'm not sure that is good for rowing. Any thoughts?

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Old 01-19-2015   #2
Atomicrider's Avatar
Arco, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 95
I've rowed a 13' and 18' cat both ways. Here is my 2 cents, I like rowing from the front because the boat feels sportier and I can pull myself through big waves easier. It is defiantly wetter, but I get almost a "kayak" connection from rowing front. My width likes it because she doesn't get wet sitting behind me.
Center row works fine, just more of a traditional feel. It will take a bit to adjust to a front row, because your forward and backward rowing affects the boat differently with the oars mounted that far forward.
One thing to note is that the outfits that I have run forward have been loaded for week long trips with a passenger, so I don't know how it would effect a solo day trip.
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Old 01-19-2015   #3
codycleve's Avatar
salmon, Idaho
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Mar 2012
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I row from a slight forward position... I hate having people in front of me and obstructing my vision.. plus my girlfriend likes how safe she deals being in he back... here is a pic of my rig..

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Old 01-19-2015   #4
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New Castle, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Jun 2010
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I reconfigured my frame last year to move my seat to the center and my oars forward. It really helped to distribute weight. I had Down River make me a cool footbar so a couple passengers can sit on a pad over the first bay and get a wet ride. Or, the drybox in the fifth bay is the "safer" seat. Depending on my passengers preference I can move the drybags etc. to help balance it. When it is just me, I prefer the forward position for the better visibility and the forward reach I have with the oars.
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Old 01-19-2015   #5
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Southwest, Colorado
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I have oars center, great pivot control. My lady prefers the ride up front also, and it doesn't really affect my view because I like to be at an angle so I can cut the water. The angle allows me to make last minute repositioning if needed. Also it allows for passengers to sit in the front and back.

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Old 01-19-2015   #6
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Arco, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1989
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If you have a NRS frame like in the first picture, you have the freedom of trying both ways without too much trouble. With a wrench and a helper, you could make the change pretty quickly during a day trip.

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Old 01-20-2015   #7
cataraftgirl's Avatar
Sandy, Utah
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I always rowed my cat from the center. It kept my gear load balanced, and I could pivot easily. I tried the forward position once and didn't like it. It felt like the tail wagging the dog. However, my friends prefer the forward position on their cats. They say it helps them plow through holes and waves easier.
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