Mountain Buzz banner

1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Looking to get a double rail frame for my new Willi2. Likely will go with DRE but does anyone know much about Row Frame out of Ft. Collins? Looks to be same materials and style as DRE but half the cost. What is the catch?

Thanks,
Zack
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
buy the pipe and fittings and build it yourself cheaper and more fun. working n your raft is a great way to spend some winter time thinking about rafting
 

·
____________________
Joined
·
971 Posts
I know this isn't the question you asked, but have you spoken with Mark at AAA Inflatables?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
Not to take business away from the frame companies but.....
Build your frame, it's pretty easy and you can customize it the way you want!!! Did I mention saving a ton of $$$. I put my double rail together in a day for around $550. It's a 5 bay collapsible, 1.5" tubing, speed rail with DRE towers, NRS oar locks and tile deck. It rides on a 09' Aire 143R...
It's my RED ROCKET!!
Starting out:
2011-06-25_10-35-41_6.jpg
2011-06-25_11-03-51_902.jpg
2011-08-30_16-45-42_602.jpg
Rigged for Deso, added a bay the second year I had it:
2012-08-31_14-18-58_528.jpg
2012-09-02_19-55-22_855.jpg
2012-09-05_18-17-40_895.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
115 Posts
AAA is the way!

I know this isn't the question you asked, but have you spoken with Mark at AAA Inflatables?
After buying my new 15.5' Sotar last year, I heavily researched frames and spoke to frame makers here in Colorado. Each time I called DRE, i spoke to a different guy and got a butt-load of attitude.

Mark at AAA is the owner and fabricator. He'll work directly with you to make the frame you want at a price lower than what DRE can offer-and just as good or better than DRE.

I ended up with a sweet double rail frame that is fit to my boat, gear requirements, and body size at a sweet price.

I strongly recommend AAA for their easy to work with attitude and depth of knowledge.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I assume that the rowframe guy is Gary Strome (sp?). If so, you can't go wrong with him. He will build you a great frame for way cheaper than you could get at either AAA or DRE. I have also bought the fittings and pipe from him to build my own frames. Either way he is at least worth talking to.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
71 Posts
I too have researched this and the major difference I saw in making your own frame and having one made is, the bending of the pipe. Professionals can bend the pipe on the 90 degree corners and that helps with stress on the frame in class IV and V rapids. (It makes a big difference for a Cat boat with the bending of the bars coming up from the waterline between the tubes). If you are rafting class III's and an occasional IV , then I don't think it is much of a worry. The place in Ft. Collins does not bend the frame from all the photos I have seen in the past. Good luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Gary at rowframe will do you right. Very nice guy that just wants to see people on the water and not so much to make a dollar. Don't think you will be able to build one cheaper than getting one from him, especially a double rail.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
More kudo's for gary at rowframe

I am having Gary build me a second cat frame. My take is simple, you maybe get a 10% nicer frame from DRE or AAA, but it will cost you twice as much. I have owned frames from all three.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
Go with Gary. His work is on point, he is more than affordable and you can use the cash money saved for more river tricks up that sleeve of yours...
 

·
Free and Easy
Joined
·
101 Posts
Gary at rowframe would be my vote. I asked to come by his shop and check out his frames some time. He informed me that he builds frames in his back yard. In the snow. Barefoot.

John at DRE is a super nice guy as well, if you want pipe bent instead of mechanical joints.
 

·
Cpt. No Scout
Joined
·
517 Posts
I too have researched this and the major difference I saw in making your own frame and having one made is, the bending of the pipe.

Most muffler shops would be happy to do the bending for you. I have built a number of frames. I build a new one almost ever year. This year I spent $70 on steel tubing and another $40 on bends at the steel shop. Now I am welding it up. When I am done, I will wrap the frame in heavy duty electrical tape. I basicly copied a catframe from canyon inflatables this year and made it fit my willy. I going with the modular set up this year and see how it goes for me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
140 Posts
One of the biggest differences between Gary and AAA/DRE is he does not use hard anodized tubes as does the other 2 frame builders.
When the tubes are not hard anodized they tend to leave black marks on your boat tubes. Gary will tell you to put clear spray paint on the frame tubes to protect the boat. He will tell you hard anodizing tubes weaken the tube.
I have both types of frames; I spray my non anodized frame once or twice a year. Takes care of the black issue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
66 Posts
Mark and Judy are cool; they've treated me quite well in the last few years and Mark is more than happy to show you his shop and the equipment he uses for fabbing.

Gary is my go-to for materials. He's super knowledgable, stoked about frame building and willing to answer fabrication questions and then suggest fabrication methods (ie: use a chop saw with a bimetal blade to cut tubing, etc). I've sent him cad files and he's provided me feedback before I began my first cut.

if you search the MB, he was the previous speedrail supplier for Denver.
http://www.mountainbuzz.com/forums/f15/speed-rail-41754-3.html

So, I built my entire setup (double-rail, 4-bay) last year buying parts from him and then diamond plate materials from Alreco in Commerce City. It's a stout (although a bit heavy) setup and now I'm tinkerking with concepts for a rear deck and anchor system.

My only dissapointment with my DIY setup is that AAA or DRE can shape pipes to fit within each other if you need a take-down setup for packing in to the Gunny Gorge or somewhere similar...mine doesn't do that and I haven't figured out how to pull mine apart easily yet to fit on the back of a horse...I may just build a 2nd frame for those situations.

here's pics from my build-up last year. All pipes & fittings were from Gary. The towers came from Mark @ AAA.

-scott
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,119 Posts
Scott;

On your picture of just the frame.

Is that closest bay diamond plate fastened down just on one side so that it functions as a hinged lid?

If so, how is the front held in a flip?

========

I can see where your camera post would work as a kitchen fly pole on a place like the Owyhee.
I'm liking it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
178 Posts
Gary will build a boat for little more than material cost. Since i bend my own tubing, i tend to use him for t connectors which he casts. He is real reasonable on other frame parts as well. I still use dre for swages, seats, and towers.
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
Top