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Old 09-10-2015   #1
 
fort collins, Colorado
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underinflated floor to track faster

I'm cruising a 13 foot rocky, with a fishing frame. Some of my partners are rowing fishing specific boats, that are narrower with smaller tubes. I'll take my boat every time, but it's tough to keep up, & I end up rowing a lot on flat water. Somebody told me they under inflate their floor when they're not doing white water, and it helps their boat be a little quicker. Any thoughts?

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Old 09-10-2015   #2
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
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Yup- soft = drag. In moving water, more drag means the river does more of the work.

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Old 09-10-2015   #3
 
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Wheat Ridge, Colorado
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I learned this fact this summer as well. 16' DRE with fishing frame. Had some WINDY days on the Upper C. After the worst one, a nice and grizzled old veteran told me about this at takeout. I felt like such a dumbass that it hadn't occurred to me. It makes a difference, and you also don't get blown around quite as much.
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Old 09-11-2015   #4
CGM
 
Denver, Colorado
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This was always my assumption; more area in the water=moving more quickly and more resistant to wind. And yet on Deso a few weeks back, my buddy with a 14 foot cat boat with big 25" (I think tubes) sat really high out of the water, and was significantly faster than my 14'er in the flats and areas of moderate current.
Maybe comparing raft performance to cat performance is just apples and oranges..but it still seemed contradictory to me. Any thoughts on this one?
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Old 09-11-2015   #5
 
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Belgrade, Montana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cnile970 View Post
I'm cruising a 13 foot rocky, with a fishing frame. Some of my partners are rowing fishing specific boats, that are narrower with smaller tubes. I'll take my boat every time, but it's tough to keep up, & I end up rowing a lot on flat water. Somebody told me they under inflate their floor when they're not doing white water, and it helps their boat be a little quicker. Any thoughts?
So is it easier for you to back row when you are fishing? What I'm getting at is each design/concept as pros and cons, so if you have less drag, it should be easier for you to stop your boat...are you the last one down a long string of riffles? Can you ferry faster?

While I agree with the concept of more drag= faster and less work going down river it works the opposite while slowing down/ferrying. I went through a lot of this conceptually when I was new boat shopping and what I ended up with was a boat the could be the fastest or the slowest, depending on the situation and the amount of effort. Up river winds, I have to work, down river winds, no one can catch me, even hard boats. Backrowing is almost like rowing a hardboat. I'm super happy with it and would only add drag to my boat in extended upriver wind scenarios. With all this said, I really don't care if I'm first, last or in the middle. I fish at my pace and it is what it is. In ww and when needing to stay with the group is important, speed is much more about lines, following the current and avoiding eddy's anyways.

The best thing to do is try it out, see if it helps on the flat stretches and how much it hurts in the riffles. Switch boats, get a feel for theirs, see what it's pro's and cons are. You'll learn a lot about what you like and what is important to you.

Good luck and let us know what you figure out.
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Old 09-14-2015   #6
 
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Charleston, West Virginny
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I was gonna chime in and say what elkhaven is getting at. I actually prefer LESS drag when fishing, since we are fighting the current most of the time to keep from crusing by holding spots...rowing for whitewater and rowing for fishermen are two TOTALLY different games.

When I was totally green to the sport I couldn't figure out why my boat was always so much slower than others when doing whitewater runs...then I realized it had as much to do with (or more) reading the water and capitalizing on the current then it was my boat. Now I find I often one of the fastest boats and I prefer to run my floor as hard as it'll hold, it makes walking around easier.

That same drag you are creating with a soft floor will indeed carry you along in moving water, but when you are in slow moving/still pools (especially in the summer/low water) that drag is gonna hold you back which is really only helpful with strong upstream winds.
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Old 09-14-2015   #7
 
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C. Springs, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CGM View Post
This was always my assumption; more area in the water=moving more quickly and more resistant to wind. And yet on Deso a few weeks back, my buddy with a 14 foot cat boat with big 25" (I think tubes) sat really high out of the water, and was significantly faster than my 14'er in the flats and areas of moderate current.
Maybe comparing raft performance to cat performance is just apples and oranges..but it still seemed contradictory to me. Any thoughts on this one?
Was it windy? Wind tends to blow cats sideways and you have to keep on the oars to keep them straight in the wind. Without wind, cats are faster to row.

Soggy floors for better tracking is an old Avon trick. It doesn't work as well on a drop stitched floor.
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Old 09-14-2015   #8
 
Pinecliffe, Colorado
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My old bucket boat would just float nice in the wind compared to all bailers in the group. When there was no wind I'd be ahead too with out really rowing.
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Old 09-14-2015   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cnile970 View Post
I'm cruising a 13 foot rocky, with a fishing frame. Some of my partners are rowing fishing specific boats, that are narrower with smaller tubes. I'll take my boat every time, but it's tough to keep up, & I end up rowing a lot on flat water. Somebody told me they under inflate their floor when they're not doing white water, and it helps their boat be a little quicker. Any thoughts?
If you're running a raft with a drop stitch drop and you run lower psi in floor (1 - 1.5) the boat will track better but that dose not increase over all boat speed to human effort. If you run higher floor pressure the boat with spin and accelerate better.
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Old 09-15-2015   #10
 
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Post Falls, Idaho
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My boat is slower than everyone else I float with it seems even though I'm rowing harder. I'm sure it is the boat not eddies and my pathetic ability to find current in the slack.

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