Maravia Zephyr with a Fishing Frame? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 11-27-2018   #1
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
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Maravia Zephyr with a Fishing Frame?

I’m interested in purchasing a Maravia Zephyr. About half of the time the boat would be rigged with a fishing frame (modified version of the NRS fishing setup), and the other half it would be set up for multidays (wife plus two small kids that will hopefully grow with the boat).

The Zephyr is a bigger boat than ideal for fishing (I’d like to swing a 14’ or a 14’6” in all honesty), but I’m thinking it’s probably the right size to grow with the family and be the Swiss Army knife I want it to be.

Does anyone run a Zephyr or know anyone that does with a fishing frame? Any thoughts on this (or photos! 🙂 )

Thanks in advance!

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Old 11-28-2018   #2
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 75
I think you're on the right track. If I only had one round boat to do it all it would be a Zephyr. The voyageur series will row slightly smaller than a conventional shaped boat anyway.

I've got a Diablo set up this way. Highly recommend Whitewater Machine Works double rail fittings, MDO for side decks and locally sourced aluminum. I have mine set up top run either 2 dryboxes or hatch covers made out of the mdo with drop bags, or a combo of one of each. Leave one set of the side rails ~1.5" (width of LoPro) proud of the fittings in front. You can then bolt on an NRS angler seat bar on the front and even a lean bar to that if desired. Buy stern frame side rails for the rear and a short seat bar (basically stern frame minus footbar). Bolt side rails on when needed for rear fishing seat. When you want to run a motor, remove seat mount and attach motor mount. Super versatile and only requires removing four LoPros to swap.
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Old 12-03-2018   #3
 
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Belgrade, Montana
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Sep 2013
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My rig sounds very similar to idaho_h20's... but it's a 15' Sotar SL (very similar to the zephyr). I have tons of photos on this site of my frame. Also WWMW double rail (older versions) with MDO and a bunch of NRS parts as well... and some speed rail fittings and some custom fabbed stuff (front fishing seat and rear seat/floor supports).

I like the 15' for fishing - more space between casters, floats high and is still easy enough to row.

here's a couple to help illustrate:





I do not like how any of the big names put together their rear frames...but love this system I came up with a few years ago - easy ingress/egress and gives a solid floor for the rear fisherman or a great suspended place to stack gear on an overnight.



This is how I originally built it... now I use speedrail fittings but same basic idea.

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Old 12-10-2018   #4
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
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Thanks for the excellent insights elkhaven and idaho_h2o.

Looking at your frame build elkhaven, it's very similar to what I am looking at, especially the configuration in the stern section. I agree that is a superior design vs the way a lot of the stern seats are configured in stock fishing frame designs from the major names. Beautiful build!

I'm also glad to hear a 15' will be a comfortable length. I can also see how shallow draft and more casting space are both positive considerations that at a minimum counterbalance downsides of less maneuverability with going a bit longer.

After chatting with a number of folks about what I'm looking for, I'm now strongly considering a straight tube boat - likely a Williwaw 1.5. With two kids (one 14 months now but growing every day), the configuration I am looking at in the bow would be a bench drybox seat with a leg brace instead of a single swivel seat, the idea being whoever is fishing from the bow can take turns standing while the other relaxes on the bench. This also allows Mom or Dad (depending on who is rowing) to sit up with the kiddo and help with casting/line management issues.

The extra float on the straight tube would seem to be nice in above situation where we might be relatively loaded on the bow. Chatting with others with young kids, they have also expressed that a straight tube boat is nice to keep the younger kids retained in the boat a bit more and less cold on shoulder season trips.

While the extra space in a diminishing tube would be nice, in a 15' boat I think we would still have sufficient space for multi-days with the family of 4 with a straight tube, especially considering we trend on the lighter side gear wise and as the kids get older they will likely want to hop in IKs anyways.

Welcome any thoughts on the above!
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Old 12-10-2018   #5
 
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Belgrade, Montana
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Join Date: Sep 2013
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I don't think there is a significant difference in warmth/wetness with a diminishing tubed boat to a long straight boat... it's mostly a maneuverability vs tracking issue and a little overall capacity (by weight) thing. I think way too much is made of the wetter ride. The real advantage IMO is more interior space front and rear and better maneuverability (IMO tracking is easier to attain with finesse at the oars than the opposite... i.e. it's easier to keep a turny boat straight than it is to turn a tracky boat. Make any sense???

You can have your cake and eat it too....Casting seats vs. Bench. My whole casting seat and crossbar can be removed in about 30 seconds...well after I find a wrench... and then the bench is totally accessible. I had that narrow hoop built by Neff's Customs so that an adult could sit in the seat and hold onto a kiddo below as well... most of our day runs just have short sections were that works fine. For bigger trips or multi stuff I just take the raised seat off. Best of both worlds... Also my front seat is set so that my youngest (starting when he was 6) could sit on the seat and brace with his feet on the front tube while fishing. He would have to get down onto the bench in rough water but for must of our day trips he could ride there as long as he wanted. Now my boat is the kid party barge and there are usually 4 or 5 munchkins scattered about making noise and getting shit dirty!

Yeah, again, I just don't get the "more secure, warmer" concept. That's all how you approach waves/holes. quarter into something and everyone is going to get wet in either... My SL anyways has 36" of kick.... as much as almost any straight tubed boat... If I Tee up, only really big shit goes over the bow.
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Old 12-10-2018   #6
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
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Appreciate that insights/perspectives re: wetter ride and tracking. "[I]t's easier to keep a turny boat straight than it is to turn a tracky boat" - totally makes sense.

Great idea re: casting seats and bench config.

I like the geometry of the SL a lot (looks like from the designs a more pronounced rocker and slightly more kick than the Zephyr - probably a helluva lotta fun to row), but I'm so much closer to Boise and I'll be keeping on a garage/trailer most of the time so I think the Maravia makes more sense for me, especially given the year end sale. That puts me a Willy 1.5 or Zephyr decision tree. I think I'll frankly be happy with either.
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Old 12-11-2018   #7
 
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Belgrade, Montana
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Join Date: Sep 2013
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you are correct on all accounts... the SL has a constant rocker, vs straight section with diminishing tubes on bow and stern like the Zephyr... it spins on a dime and runs over eddy fences, pillows and anything else in it's way (which is not always a good thing...but usually is for my needs).

I probably wouldn't buy another Sotar with all the things that have gone on there over the past few years... seems to be more problems than I'd like to hear about. But I wish someone would make other boats with the layup the SL has... the diminishing tube sections line up so that the top and inside are flat and all the diameter change is outside the boat... that gives it the constant rocker and a really long straight top profile (my frame is 9 feet long). So basically the inner width is 42? maybe 40 inches, cant recall exactly for just over 9 feet. It makes moving coolers, boxes and such into different positions awesome. Especially when compared to an Aire that start tapering towards the bow much sooner, leaving a front cooler dryobox locale much narrower. I think the DD series is more like a Sotar and have not really been around Maravia's diminishing boats enough, but in principle they should also have a long, uniform width straight section.

Lastly and most importantly - You will be happy with what ever you get! most of the time we spend discussing geometry variations is a waste... other than it's kinda fun to discuss theoretical differences and argue their benefits.

Good luck!
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