Raft Setup help/suggestions - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 10-02-2018   #1
 
liftoperator's Avatar
 
denver, Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2017
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Raft Setup help/suggestions

Hey,

My buddy has a NRS outlaw 140 14' x 7'2" raft (21" tubes) with the bighorn frame, front and back casting platforms with thigh bars. there is a dry box that sits flat on the dropstitch floor between the foot bar for the rower and the seat bar for the front seat. we also run a small cooler on the dropstitch floor that is pinned between the rower seat bar and the dropstitch floor. He has the nrs stern anchor system with pulleys that put the rope next to the rower. 10' counterweighted Cataract oars with cutthroat blades, oarlocks, oar rights.

We just got back from floating A and B on the Green in Utah. We got our asses kicked by the wind on sunday. It seems like the boat is heavy, takes a lot of energy to get the boat moving where we need it. What can we do, if anything, to get the boat to track better in wind? We got blown around by the wind, had a hard time staying in the water we wanted to fish. Looking for suggestions on oar/rower setup, or anything we can do to make the boat lighter/and or more maneuverable, short of getting a driftboat

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Old 10-03-2018   #2
 
Golden, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Bottom line on heavy upstream wind is they don't mix well with inflatables.

As painful as it may be for the less motivated morning folks, the best advice in general for western rivers is get an early,early start in the morning before the afternoon headwinds kick up.

Crack of noon launches tend to get stuffed. Crack of dawn, not so much.

For example, I did a recent low water,high daily mileage Deso-Gray trip that had us launching in predawn light and off the river by ~11am to avoid getting stuffed. Easy miles without wind. Way too much like work when it kicked up in the late mornings or early afternoons.

Sometimes it just blows and keeps blowing though and you are just screwed.

Your motivation and mileage may vary.
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Old 10-03-2018   #3
 
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2015
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I don't think it will help with wind, but I sure prefer keeping things off the floor and on the frame/tubes.
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Old 10-03-2018   #4
Be Like Water
 
Rivertime, Colorado
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I agree that keeping things off the floor is a good idea. Griz is spot on about getting on the water early. There's few things worse than being with a group that wants to take there time in the morning by having a DO breakfast or something where you finally peel out at 11 if you're lucky. Sitting in the hot sun watching folks struggle with their straps isn't fun. Then someone in the group will invariably complain about how hard it is to row in an upstream wind (like it happening is a shock).

On the water early so you can start the fun at camp by 2 or 3.
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Old 10-04-2018   #5
 
Salida, Colorado
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And, you can always take a motor along, just in case
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Old 10-04-2018   #6
 
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Kalispell, Montana
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liftoperator, x3 on hanging your gear from your frame rather than having it on the floor. Dropstitch floors are generally hard, slick, and fast, but having gear on them still makes a bulge that sticks down into the current. Hanging the gear on the frame loads the weight spread-out on the main tubes where they won't put a lumpy bulge down into the current.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquido View Post
I agree that keeping things off the floor is a good idea. Griz is spot on about getting on the water early. There's few things worse than being with a group that wants to take there time in the morning by having a DO breakfast or something where you finally peel out at 11 if you're lucky. Sitting in the hot sun watching folks struggle with their straps isn't fun. Then someone in the group will invariably complain about how hard it is to row in an upstream wind (like it happening is a shock).

On the water early so you can start the fun at camp by 2 or 3.
Some people like to roll early, some like to roll late.
Most frustrating when you have a mix in your group.
If your group all likes to roll late (and you're on a river without upstream winds), then what's the problem? Personally I can go with the flow either way.

I do agree that rolling out early when you're on windy flat water is a solid decision.

Also the groups with small children and the others who want a big DO breakfast that puts you on the river right in the middle of nap time. (Sorry dad!)





Watching someone struggle with their straps is never fun. If you take more time with your straps, start rigging earlier than the people who are fast with rigging!!
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Old 10-07-2018   #7
 
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Nampa, Idaho
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Do you have a picture to help visualize it better?
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Old 10-20-2018   #8
 
Grangeville, Idaho
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I'd ditch the oar rights so you can feather your blades. This makes a huge difference rowing against the wind.
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Old 10-20-2018   #9
 
Salida, Colorado
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I have always found that 10' oars are too long for a 14' boat. See if you can find a pair of 9' oars to try out. Feathering definitely helps in the wind. The other advice on early starts and not changing the shape of the drop stitch floor is sound as well.

Otherwise, it kinda becomes a suck-it-up-buttercup thing and it's time to learn how to row into the wind...
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Old 10-20-2018   #10
 
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Nampa, Idaho
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I don't know, his boat is pretty wide. At 7'2" its almost as wide as my 16'. I use 10' oars on my boat. I could be wrong, but I think oar length is going to depend on width of the boat more than length of the boat.

While feathering or rowing standing up all help with the wind, I'm not sure he will see a big improvement. The OP describes his friend's boat as sluggish and hard to move. I don't think feathering will help with those problems too much. Based on the problems he is describing, it sounds like the boat is overloaded, or maybe the floor is being deformed, or maybe his passengers sitting or standing on their casting platforms or chairs are acting as sails, etc.

Lift Operator, post a picture of his setup. We will be able to help you a lot more if we can see what your friend's boat looks like.
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