Input on Cats and Bimini tops - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 08-08-2015   #1
 
Park City, Utah
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Sep 2009
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Input on Cats and Bimini tops

We've always rigged an umbrella on our cats. It's kind of a pain in that, if the wind comes up or we're running a technical rapid, we have to take it down and stow it across our front dry box. It's just not convenient.

We've been thinking about a bimini top of some sort, but it also has it's draw backs. Unlike rafts, where gear bags etc are often stowed on the back of the raft, on the floor, between the tubes, we rig gear on the walk boards on either side the dry box and drop-everything bag(DEB). With out stacking all this gear on top of the DEB, which is already fairly tall sometimes, I'm in a quandary on how to mount a bimini top so it lays flat.

I'm sure some wise ass will recommend that we sell the cats and get raft, but that ain't happenin' as long as my wife has any say in the matter. I guess we could take less stuff, but leaving the chairs and roll up aluminum table isn't an option either.

So, I'm looking for suggestions and mostly photos of installation of biminis on cats.

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Old 08-08-2015   #2
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Hi,

Here's something for you. Twenty foot Jack's cat and 16' NRS cat.

Rich Phillips
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Old 08-08-2015   #3
 
Durango, Colorado
Join Date: Dec 2013
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I just sold my setup and the bimini was great! Attached mine on a sliding track that allowed you to position the bimini where you need it when in use but still slide it way forward or aft to clear the gear in resting position. Gear option on the side decks are definitely need to be consolidated fore or aft of the resting postion of the bimini. This is limitation is a fair cost of the binimi's ability to handle wind and rain. Vhttps://www.mountainbuzz.com/swap/showproduct.php?product=31891&title=16-27-jack-27s-plastic-cat&cat=3
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Old 08-09-2015   #4
 
Park City, Utah
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Thanks Rich & Hunderman, you've kind of confirmed that for a bimini to work, the walk boards need to be some what clear. We're having a new frame made and I was debating whether to have umbrella holders welded into the frame and then the whole bimini top suggestion came up.
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Old 08-09-2015   #5
 
Durango, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2006
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If you're having a new frame made, the best set-ups I've seen have been on frames where there is a small bay (to fit 2 ammo cans or something similar) behind whatever you sit on. Most people opt to mount the bimini in front of their oars (about 18-24" infront of the oar tower) for best coverage of them and their passengers (assuming they're in front) and still have clearance for their oars. Somewhere in that 18-24" distance should allow you to drop it directly on the back crossrail of the frame in front of your DEB.

This has been with the bimini we make and sell, so others may vary depending on the exact height of your bimini. Mounting it into fishing kayak accessory tracks that you mount to your decking can make it adjustable if you have a decked or diamond plate frame.
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Old 08-09-2015   #6
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Hi,

My only complaint about use of a bimini is the way it prevents you from seeing the sky. I love the shade, but you'll notice in my pictures that I have it sort of set back and tipped up, so I can still see some portion of the canyon.

FWIW.

Rich Phillips
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Old 08-09-2015   #7
 
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lafayette or Grand Lake, CO., Colorado
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Snake River through Hells Canyon video - 7/6/15-7/11/15


Here is a photo and video of my 16" cat rigged for 3, outfitted for a 6 day single boat trip. Bimini is rigged with a misting system for hot days. I mount mine behind oar towers so it folds out of my way.
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Old 08-09-2015   #8
 
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lafayette or Grand Lake, CO., Colorado
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attached my frame layout
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Old 08-10-2015   #9
 
Park City, Utah
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I've attached one of the earlier versions of my frame drawing. I'm hoping to do the final tweaking of it tonight. Yeah, it's hand drawn. Kinda old school.

storm11,
I can't add another 8ish'' to our cat frame layout. It's 127-5/8'' long OA now and 93-94'' of side frame setting on the tubes. FYI, the tubes are 16' x 28'' Sotar STs. OA frame width is 76''.

Rich, that is one damn big cat. Although, we have a friend with a 23' JPW cat. 31'' tubes on that one. I can appreciate your comment about biminis blocking your view. That's why if we get one it has to come down and stow neatly out of the way. I'm not sure we'll use it on MF type rivers, but it can get pretty hot in Idaho during the summer. It would have been nice to have during our layover day this past June.

Bighorn, do have any photos of your bimini stowed and how it clears your gear pile. Sorry, I didn't watch the whole video if it happens to be shown on there.
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Old 08-10-2015   #10
 
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There is one below the video link
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