DRE Frames vs Cambridge Welding - Page 2 - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #11
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 477
Iím a big fan of diamond plate decks and having an adjustable frame. Since I barely know what Iím doing, I can adjust my DRE frame to my ever changing needs. Diamond plate gets hot, however that doesnít seem to stop the Grand Canyon outfitters. If itís okay in the summer on the grand, I guess it will work for me. Iím stoked I chose the adjustable frame. I feel having diamond decks are safer as well. People donít slip or trip as often when getting on or off.

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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #12
 
oarframe's Avatar
 
Gardnerville, Nevada
Paddling Since: 00
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 481
i like the weight of the CW frames, they're lighter than the bigger tubed frames with fittings, at least the nrs ones. Not sure what the dre ones weigh in at..
they are, however moderately adjustable. you can take out the footbar section and replace the cross bars with some tubing which gets rid of those diagonal sections that clog up the space between cooler and raft tube. that opens things up for bigger coolers, water jugs, etc.
i,ve put all kind of diff decks on over time. The current one is hdpe, which is great, but heavy. Really thinking about having some alu decks welded on. ,
still, i like the big flat canyon style rigs, diamond plate and metal hatches... lots of room to party!
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #13
 
GeoRon's Avatar
 
Golden, Colorado
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Join Date: Jun 2015
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I recently set up one of my large cats to accommodate a cousin who is 6'5". That would have been hard to do with a frame that did not adjust.

I have a 1986 DRE frame. They and similar frames from other manufactures don't wear out. It is a good idea from time to time to make sure the set screws don't freeze up(loosen and re-tighten) and lubricate.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #14
My name isn't Will
 
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Willamette Valley, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 155
I have either a CW Salmon River frame or a home-built version of one. I like how beefy it is, but am not stoked about a couple things.



I run two larger dry boxes. The frame came with a front deck, but I got another box. I considered a drop bag, but didn't go that route. The bays are 13" wide, so don't accommodate rocket boxes. I have to put the groover in the gear pile if I'm carrying it. That's my main problem.


The only other problem is that it was built for someone much taller than I am. If I row from the cooler, the oars are way too close. If I row from the drybox, I have to sit pretty close to the front edge or just have the oars a little too far away.



One reason I think it was home-built is that it didn't have a foot bar. I called Cy and asked about it; he said they never build a frame without a foot bar. I had Timmy at Recretec install one (Thanks Timmy). That helps with the issue of the rower's bay being too long, but doesn't solve it completely. The other thing is I could still read the printing on the galvanized metal. The rubber was 16 years old when I bought it, but that frame sure wasn't. The seller told me it was an aluminum frame; I knew better and showed him with a magnet. He said that's what the guy he bought it from told him, but he was a contractor so should have known better.


I like/don't like the bars that come down inside the tubes. They definitely help make the boat more rigid. They also waste some space that I could otherwise use.


Timmy helped solve the issue with Captains' Boxes, too. We did two things. The second wasn't necessary because the first works so well. The second was a footman's loop attached on the back side to strap to the frame member that descends into the rowers' bay. The one that really eliminated my issue is he welded a small piece of square steel onto each box so they fit really nicely into the bay. They don't move now, and it's more easy to access the cooler. It's still not ideal, but it's totally doable. The harder part is getting padlocks off in the morning when I feel the need to lock out bears.



If I had to buy a new frame, I would definitely consider another galvanized welded frame like Cambridge. I would probably make the drybox bays bigger to accommodate rocket boxes, and I'd make the rower's bay shorter to accommodate my smaller stature.
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My name isn't actually Will.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #15
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 477
I will always have a front deck and drop hatch. Sleeping on my boat is one of my favorite things about overnight trips. Also, if itís sweltering hot, boat sleeping is usually much cooler than the dirt. Not to detour the thread, but Iím going try out my new megamid soon.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #16
 
Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1968
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by tanderson View Post
Iím a big fan of diamond plate decks and having an adjustable frame. Since I barely know what Iím doing, I can adjust my DRE frame to my ever changing needs. Diamond plate gets hot, however that doesnít seem to stop the Grand Canyon outfitters. If itís okay in the summer on the grand, I guess it will work for me. Iím stoked I chose the adjustable frame. I feel having diamond decks are safer as well. People donít slip or trip as often when getting on or off.
Not sure of everyone's age, but each year I love my diamond-plate decks more and more. I'm just simply not as agile as I was 30 years ago and walking around on the raft is much easier with the decking.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #17
 
thornton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1969
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,062
True...

Quote:
Originally Posted by goldenrafter View Post
Not sure of everyone's age, but each year I love my diamond-plate decks more and more. I'm just simply not as agile as I was 30 years ago and walking around on the raft is much easier with the decking.
Plus, you can stand up and look around, so you can remember which river you have been running for the past couple of day's, not that it really matters, after a while, your just glad to be on one.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #18
 
SLC/Sugarhood, Utah
Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 6
Golden,

Do you also rock a foot well floor?
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #19
 
Portland, Oregon
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 22
I just got my DRE frame not too long ago. Really barebones for right now. Two hatches up front and cooler for a seat. I went with rainbow oar towns so I don't have to worry about my towers moving and that bolts are tight. They were easy to work with and built the frame to my boat specs. You can add diamond plate, extra rails, boxes, nesting tables, the works.

Going add two drop bags and wooden covers up front for gear. A wooden dance floor (some call it a cock pick floor or foot well floor) to stand on. The frame breaks down into 7 pieces real easily. Nice and adjustable!

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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #20
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 1
I think DRE frames are ok, nothing to write home about. I haven't looked into Cambridge.

Have you looked into Recretec frames? We currently have one on each of our boats and will likely get another next year...and a custom trailer from him.

The reasons we went with Recretec:
- Completely customized to EXACTLY how we wanted it
- Quick Latch System - this makes a huge difference when rigging, no straps everywhere & quickly and easily remove dry boxes and captain boxes.
- Powder Coated - I know most companies do this, but it is so nice not to have the nasty black marks on your brand new boat.
- The frames are really light - About half the weight of DRE's frames but you are not compromising on strength.
- Awesome customer service

I could go on and on with how happy I am with Recretec. I realize you didn't ask about their frames specifically, but I had to chime in, I personally think they are the best in the business.

https://www.recretec.com/

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