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Discussion Starter #1
Trying to sort out advantages vs disadvantages of these 2 frames for a cat boat. Any help would be great.
PRE Cheaper, Faster to receive and lighter? Does the seat adjust? How much do frames go for?

Madcatr. More custom

Thank you,
 

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Shapp
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I would think if you are serious about buying one of these, the best sources for your answers would be to call madcatr and PRE, ask them what the pricing is, what the weight is and what the features are. Please report back.
 

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I'm with shapp. Call the manufacturers and quit listening to forum dribble. Unless you are a Class V only boater most of these frames suck for doing trips on. Get the right frame for the job,don't be one of the many sheeple wandering around Lochsa saying look at me I'm cool. You know how many people I see out with that style frame who are multi day boaters bitching about being uncomfortable.
That new frame shown is all over the place?? Madcatr tower bars, Canyon foot bar, Drl flop towers. Wish these guys would get original and stop starting a new frame business to steal everyones work and meld it into a big bastard
 

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Unless you are a Class V only boater most of these frames suck for doing trips on. Get the right frame for the job,don't be one of the many sheeple wandering around Lochsa saying look at me I'm cool. You know how many people I see out with that style frame who are multi day boaters bitching about being uncomfortable.
I find this a bizarre statement. I find my madcatr extremely comfortable. I spent 22 days on it on the grand, and can't imagine how a frame would make or break comfort. Maybe those people are clueless about rigging their boat or something.

Pinned is right, PRE is done and Class V looks great (disclosure, I am friends with him). His frames are pretty close to the pre design, if that is what you like.

Over labor day class V had inventory so a standard frame was available. He does custom too.
 

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Give Guy a call at Whitewater Machine Works. He's in Groveland and does great work, really cool lightweight breakdown frames. You could actually meet with him and then pick it up.
 

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Being the owner of PRE I have few things to relay on this topic.

First some history. Ron McLay and I formed PRE in 2000; Ron had his own rental and equipment business for many years prior. Ron built frames, and he and I tweaked and tested until we settled on the "PRE" design. Although under the PRE umbrella, the frames were basically Ron's endeavor and he got all proceeds. Ronnie and I decided to split the business in the late 2000's for various business reasons. It was an amicable split and we work together all the time, trade rental boats around, I continued to send him frame business, etc.

Ronnie broke his neck (c1) in a dirtbike accident a few years back and also suffered a stroke while at the ER due to an unknown tear in an artery. He was lucky to survive, but that is Ron! He has mostly recovered, but his fine dexterity is not all the way. He has decided to get out of the frame building because of the extra effort it now requires. This is a major bummer as Ron's "PRE" frames were a great product at a super price. Many have copied them.

Ron may get back to building frames at some point and/or could be convinced to do one here or there. His number is 208 six 42 4009.

In the transition period, I had a lot of customers looking for aluminum (Ron only did emt), so I started working with Jesse Fisher (ClassVgear now) to morph the PRE frame into an aluminum version. It took a couple iterations but I really think he has nailed it. I supported Jesse's decision to brand it under his own company, and I will send business his way much like I did for Ron. I am now running (testing!) his frames and love them. They have top of the line craftsmanship to match the best on the market.

As for an earlier comment, all I will say is it takes constant innovation to move the industry forward, but that doesn't mean having to reinvent the wheel. You take a great design and improve upon it. For example, Ron started putting quick fold down towers on his frames decades ago, and now that is a standard feature with the newer players, but with new ideas. Dave Nissen came up with replaceable bars for the tower slides, Ron (and now Jesse) seized on that idea. Etc etc etc. My design of the Legend series cataraft came about the same way, tweaks and improvements.

As for doing gear trips with these "cool show off" frames, I guess I've just been doing it all wrong these last 35 years. To each their own.

Ted Day
Payetteriver.com
 

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I still think it would be awesome for all these contenders to put their money where there mouth is and have a frame build off event somewhere. Everyone bring the best designed,,quality fabricated frame you can build say in a playboat style and have them judged. Of course I don't know if it would do much good as most forum boaters are pretty biased to what they own and wouldn't even try or let alone admit if there was something better. They do the Ostrich maneuver and burry the head in the sand and say mine is the best lol.
 

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There's a lot of great frames out there for cats. I've rowed Madcatr and PRE- in addition to old school "Coyote" modular frames and NRS cat frames.
For my body geometry and general preference, I like the PRE design better. I like having my foot position a bit higher and not as splayed out to the sides. Why? In my opinion, when your foot position is a bit higher, when you drop into a big hole and the boat suddenly de-cellerates, having your legs straighter instead of low, gives better bracing. Also, as a nuance, the PREs have a larger "tunnel"- more of a U shape rather than a triangle tunnel like a madcatr.

My PRE frame is a 3 bay design with a bay behind the rowing position for cargo. I also have a super light trailer frame I can use for extra cargo. The frame weighs about 45 lbs.
The frame is super comfortable and pretty versatile. I've used my cat (12.6 Legend) on various day trips on up to 6 days. The only reason I don't use it on long trips is because I've got a 16' Sotar round boat for that, but the next Grand trip I get, I might row the Legend and my wife would row the raft...

My advice- see if you can actually row a few different cats with different frames. I will say that if the PRE I currently have would've been available in aluminum I would've gone that route for the weight savings. As it is, a steel emt PRE frame is still pretty light and is a very functional design at a good price.

*I am not affiliated with PRE-just like their design.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I was hoping that I could get some general info on the PRE, like steel or aluminum, time line to get one made, rough idea on price, how does shipping work, weight comparisons but after 10 posts I think only one of them has any relative info. Yes I want your chat room drivel….. kick out some stats!!!
 

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I still think it would be awesome for all these contenders to put their money where there mouth is and have a frame build off event somewhere. Everyone bring the best designed,,quality fabricated frame you can build say in a playboat style and have them judged. Of course I don't know if it would do much good as most forum boaters are pretty biased to what they own and wouldn't even try or let alone admit if there was something better. They do the Ostrich maneuver and burry the head in the sand and say mine is the best lol.

Yeah, maybe we should set them up like when they do the Ford F150 frame comparisons (to other truck frames)! LOL!!!! We could hang weights from them to see how much they deflect/deform!! LOL!!!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zRfE_XAk2mE

I do not understand this bias you think of - what bias? You're saying someone prefers a PRE or Madcatr frame - that they have a bias for them - to something that is not available to them, or they can't get their hands on it, or can't buy it, or demo it for a few days, rent it for a few days, etc. If you knew of another company that had a frame readily available for rent/demo/try, then there might be a few owners to talk about them in frame recommendation threads.
 

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Dgoods has good input, he can tell you why he likes what he runs. Why it works for him. What he didn't care for on other products.

It's quite clear villainista doesn't really want to buy a frame that works for him or he would be calling manufacturers for this info and hunting down frames to look at or demo lol. It tells you alot about a boater when they pop on a forum and say " ok guys what should I get". If you have been on the water long enough you know what you need, I remember when people used to go find what worked for them and didn't need to ask an internet group. He is just searching for the general populations cool factor to fit in, he forgets the gear is way different out here so he should be asking west coasters if he is in Cali. I use this forum or the internet to find out about products then go do my own research and come to my own conclusion of what will work for me.

Spey I think you may be onto something with that frame bending test!
 

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I was hoping that I could get some general info on the PRE, like steel or aluminum, time line to get one made, rough idea on price, how does shipping work, weight comparisons but after 10 posts I think only one of them has any relative info. Yes I want your chat room drivel….. kick out some stats!!!
Here is some info on a custom built Colorado style frame from DRE.... :mrgreen:

Product Page | Down River Equipment Company
 

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Lots of options...

As far as weight comparisons, it obviously depends on the size of the frame. My buddy has a Madcatr frame that weighs more than my PRE because his rear cargo bay is larger. You may also have a larger rowing bay depending on how long your legs are. I could be wider based on how wide you want your oar towers... all this equates to more frame material and more weight.

My frame is relatively wide, row bay small because I have short legs and my cargo bay can hold a small drybox or 80 qt cooler or a drop bag with gear...

With anything custom, you need to have a pretty good idea of what you want going into it.

When I ordered my frame from Ronnie at PRE I had done my measurements and he worked with me to dial in the dimensions.

Stats: My frame weighs about 45#s (emt steel)
cost: $725.00 (vs around $1,500 for a Madcatr)
wait time: about a month (vs 12 or so months for Madcatr)
shipping: a CO SOTAR rep was in Idaho to pick up several PRE frames, so I worked w/him to bring my frame down for some gas money

For shipping, unless you can work out a "bro" deal with someone, you'd be better off just picking it up yourself. Plan a boating trip and on route, get your frame.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Whitewater Machine Works:
Break-down Aluminum, available in about 3 months 40 lbs about $1 k Can be shipped builder is in Groveland Ca.

Thant is what i was hopping for. Post what u want i think freedom of speech is really cool but when i shoot back don't go crying to your mama.
 

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Those look pretty slick. Nice attention to detail-I like to O-ring feature for the oar locks and the joints look pretty strong.

If I were buying one of these units I'd talk to the owner to see if he's had any strength issues on class 4/5 water or Grand Canyon sized white water. Personally, I've always shied away from break down frames for a cat because the frame on a cat is so much more structural than for a round boat.

One consideration- short frames work well on short boats. If you have too much tube unsupported by your frame you can run into some instability as your boat gets torqued by hydraulics. Just something to keep in mind.

What size tubes will you be using w/your frame?
 

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Dgoods has good input, he can tell you why he likes what he runs. Why it works for him. What he didn't care for on other products.

It's quite clear villainista doesn't really want to buy a frame that works for him or he would be calling manufacturers for this info and hunting down frames to look at or demo lol. It tells you alot about a boater when they pop on a forum and say " ok guys what should I get". If you have been on the water long enough you know what you need, I remember when people used to go find what worked for them and didn't need to ask an internet group. He is just searching for the general populations cool factor to fit in, he forgets the gear is way different out here so he should be asking west coasters if he is in Cali. I use this forum or the internet to find out about products then go do my own research and come to my own conclusion of what will work for me.

Spey I think you may be onto something with that frame bending test!
If you're calling manufacturers to ask them about feedback on their frames I'm sure for the most part you're going to get a skewed view on the real qualities or performance of their frame to some degree depending on the honesty of the manufacturer. If you talk to boaters who run these frames you're going to get sure, some pride on what they buy, but you're going to hear a more objective view on the frames!

Do you know how many people go on a forum and ask what they should buy? I see it on fishing forums, vehicle forums, and boating forums I participate on. It's part of why forum's exist. So people can ask the questions and share information. For example - forums like this one have saved people a lot of money because they acquired information where they didn't end up buying from manufacturers who make a lot of claims, but can't deliver on those claims!
 

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I'll just keep it simple...I got my 12.5' Legend from Ted a couple years ago...he hooked me up with Ronnie for the frame. I run the North Fork with it...I run the Main Salmon or any other multi with it. Friggin' love it...super simple, bomber design...I modified slightly to accommodate for additional gear on bigger trips. Done.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Just going to drop about 6 k on gear but clearly shappe knows what is going on in my head.
Yep just a class 3 hack ( 3+low water)
But I think shapp is a big homo
 
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