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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Kind of like to have Mr. Gary put together a frame for my boat but I can't reach him. Anyone know if he's still doing his thing and/or okay? I emailed him through rowframe.com several weeks ago and it's been crickets. When I try to call I get the recording that says no voice mailbox set up so I can't leave him a VM. I've reached out for advice in years past and he's always been pretty responsive so I'm not sure what to make of it.
 

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Had the same problem.... ended up building my own frame. Guy is pretty flaky but some people seem to have good luck with him.

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Yep, not surprised he was a real pain when I was trying to get him to build me a frame and so I left him to his own and went to Down River, way happy with those folks over there.
 

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I managed to purchase a frame from Gary 3 or 4 seasons ago, and I have been very happy with it. The oar towers are a nice design. That said, he is the only person in the rafting industry I have ever had issues trying to get to take my money. I have tried for multiple seasons to get a few parts from him, including a foot-bar and I have had no luck. He would respond initially, but when I would ask for a total so that I could send a check, I would not receive a response. When I made my initial purchase, he didn't cash the check until 2 months after my frame was delivered. His frames are a great deal if you can get your hands on one.


I believe from our phone conversations he only builds raft frames seasonally.
 

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I ordered a frame on 9/28 he del'd it personally on the 10/16 of this month (love it) exactly what I wanted. E-mail is the way to go
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the responses everyone. Bighorn, email was the first thing I did so he'd have a good idea of what I was working with and what I wanted, but that email went out quite some time ago and I've still heard nothing. Hence the phone calls. Which he doesn't answer. And he doesn't have VM. So, still nothing LOL. Not a big deal really. I do like Gary. He's been very helpful in the past with advice and such and I just thought it'd be nice to give him a little biz, but my needs are pretty simple and I think PRO can fix me up for about the same price. So, onward!
 

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I just got a bunch of frame parts hand delivered by Gary last week, including Tees, towers and locks, and a 65" kickbar. Adding my own 1.5" pipe. Did take some persistence to track him down, as I take it he's about half time in Colorado and half in Oregon, but I'm glad I did because I think I'll end up with about $325 into an all aluminum 4 bay single rail frame including towers and brass locks. Good deal, and he double checked my numbers (tower height, oar length, frame width, etc) to make sure it was near the sweet spot. And in retrospect, if I knew that he would hand deliver, I'd have just got the pipe from him as well, since without shipping it would have been about the same price. I'm pleased.
 

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Gary recently built me a cat frame.

I am happy with the frame and the price.

My take is Gary is the typical small business operating out of his back yard. Meaning he does have a day job and to do list plus building frames I think by himself. Meaning he is one busy person.

He answered my emails within a reasonable time.

All in all my frame was worth the wait.

Gary is very easy and fun to discuss things with. I had a ton of questions and he answered each one.

Based on my dealings with Gary, he is a good guy and makes good frames.
 

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Gary row frames

Attached is a some of photo's of my 3 bay frame for my 12' RMR from Gary.
 

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I bought a frame and 2 oars from Gary 2 years ago. It was a great deal, well made and he responded in a reasonable time frame. Okieboater is correct. Gary has a day job and builds out of his garage. He also tries to get out on the rivers. Hopefully nothing serious has happened from a health or lifestyle aspect. That would be sad.


One comment about his frames. They are not anodized - he thinks that weakens the aluminum. I'm OCD and don't like the black on my boat so last year I bought a roll of 3" Frame tape and put it on the bottom of all my frame pipes.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003BZWRIY/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o09_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 It kept the boat relatively clean, though not perfect, through 2 seasons.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
We have contact!

In fairness to Gary I just thought I'd let everyone know I reached out to him once more via email and received a response within a few hours.
 

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Kudo's to RowFrame

I ordered a simple 3 bay frame and a set of oars (9') late last season from Gary (Raft Frame, Cataraft, Cataraft frame, Whitewater Stern Frames). The frame was delivered early season this year and I love it. Well constructed, excellent welds (my machinist cousin told me so). As mentioned I also ordered oars. I did not receive the oars in time for a mid May trip (I cobbled together some oars from 3/4' conduit and an old kayak paddle (luckily we were on a mild river). When the oars eventually arrived (after some back and forth emails with Gary, and 2 phone calls answered by his wife) I received the oars mid-late season (of course we were in a drought and didn't really have a season anyway). Gary did mention he had trouble getting parts from Sawyer, so that was likely the cause.
I love the oars as much as the frame. They are a bit heavy, but are "bomber" as the younger crowd likes to say. We recently ran the Hudson (late Sept) and yes, it was low water, but both components from rowframe were flawless in function, and I got many compliments on such a nice "set-up" from the mostly "paddle" only crowd.
All in all, I am glad to do business with Gary, but I also know going in that I will have to be patient.
Obviously knows his stuff and is trying to fit his "passion" in with his 'livelihood'.
 

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A Few Things

1) His frames are an unbeatable value - if you're cool with their shortcomings
2) He is really hard to reach sometimes - like, REALLY hard. Even when you want to buy more of what he's already sold you
3) Be REALLY clear about how you want your frame configured - check the drawings thoroughly and make sure that they way the way the frame is presented in the drawings is exactly how it will sit on your boat
4) One of my fittings broke at the pin-hole on my first trip out (although he did replace it fast)
5) He coated my frame tubes and fittings in some sort of clear coating that immediately failed, flaked off and made a mess of my boat, garage and waterway I was in - to boot, my boat has black frame marks anyway
6) Beware of the towers. If you use large plastic stoppers or oar rights, know that they don't integrate well with either
7) If you buy one, make sure you have BOTH allen keys with you at all times, because the fittings take one size, and the towers another to remove the locks.

I'll be doing it all over again soon, and will spend the extra coin on something I know works better, without the shortcomings that have proven to bug the crap out of me.
 

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6) Beware of the towers. If you use large plastic stoppers or oar rights, know that they don't integrate well with either.
I did an initial fitting with mine (but haven't used it) - which include raftframe towers and locks, and also oar sleeves and oar rights, and they seem to fit okay. It's not sloppy...if the angle is off the oar sleeve will bind, but it looks like it will provide enough range while keeping the oar in the lock.
 

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good feedback

1) His frames are an unbeatable value - if you're cool with their shortcomings
2) He is really hard to reach sometimes - like, REALLY hard. Even when you want to buy more of what he's already sold you
3) Be REALLY clear about how you want your frame configured - check the drawings thoroughly and make sure that they way the way the frame is presented in the drawings is exactly how it will sit on your boat
4) One of my fittings broke at the pin-hole on my first trip out (although he did replace it fast)
5) He coated my frame tubes and fittings in some sort of clear coating that immediately failed, flaked off and made a mess of my boat, garage and waterway I was in - to boot, my boat has black frame marks anyway
6) Beware of the towers. If you use large plastic stoppers or oar rights, know that they don't integrate well with either
7) If you buy one, make sure you have BOTH allen keys with you at all times, because the fittings take one size, and the towers another to remove the locks.

I'll be doing it all over again soon, and will spend the extra coin on something I know works better, without the shortcomings that have proven to bug the crap out of me.
Getting the clear to adhere is a problem in cool weather and higher relative humidities. This winter I hope to add a gas fired oven to bring the material up to temperature
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Guys and gals, I meant to update this thread but came down with the forgets. So once Gary and I made initial contact he was very responsive, in most cases getting back to me same day but never later than the next. I asked for a ridiculous turnaround time (five business days to get it made and delivered to Arkansas) and the frame was in my hot little hands a day early. That's pretty amazing in my book, especially considering the price.

It was a tad large but that was my fault and he gave me excellent advice on how to easily deal with it. Just not sure how to handle not having heavy, dented EMT on my boat anymore, but I guess I'll manage.:rolleyes:

In other news, if anyone wants components to build their own frame I'll make you a deal on everything you need.
 
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