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Fit.. Questions on how.

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11 years 4 days ago #16953 by Newbflat
So I'm thinking about fitting my boat for a bit more control. My problem is that I have never done this before. Being new to skis I have been spending time in the ski before starting any mods. I have years of white water kayaking and have fit out dozens of whiter water boats but the goals there are very different.

Have a Stellar SR and when I'm out in chop I feel a bit loose. The boat moves around under my ample posterior more than I would like. Also the bucket is big so that adds to the sense of looseness. I wish I had more contact points making the boat more a part of me. Part of this is coming from whitewater where I'm locked in and the boat becomes 'one' with the paddler. I use to fit out my boat so that I could hang up side down from two saw horses and not fall out of the boat. From that perspective sitting in a ski feels very vulnerable.

So, what can and should I do to make the ski more a part of me but not interfere with efficient paddling and remounting. Are there rules of thumb, recommendations, general guidelines to follow? Points of contact, places to avoid? I'm just trying to get a discussion going about boat fitting. When people Started fitting out white water kayaks better it transformed boat controls. When I look around at people in there surfskis, very flew people have any fitting at all. I can't help but think that nearly everyone could benefit some degree by a better fit.

For me, better control in cross chop would be appreciated as well as down wind. I realize that it's a surfski and not a kayak but yesterday as I was paddling a mini downwinder with confused chop, and I couldn't help but want more control. The boat moved and rocked a bit to much under me for comfort.

Oh... And any pointers on past discussions appreciated.

Bill..

FENN Bluefin S
FENN Swordfish S carbon hybrid
Epic V8 double gen 2
Lot and lots of DK rudders.


Had:
Stellar SEL excel (gen 2)
Stellar SR excel (gen2)
Stellar S18s g1 (excel)
Epic V10 Double (performance)
Stellar SR (gen 1)
V10 sport (gen 2)
V10 (Gen 2)
Beater SEL (gen 1)

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11 years 4 days ago - 11 years 4 days ago #16955 by Kayaker Greg
Have a browse through my album on kayak and ski seats and you might get some ideas as besides comfort, boat control is also important with changes to the cockpit. I was loose inside my SEL until I made my own seat which helped a lot. Calf pads may help in the SR as well as another point of contact. I have some in my SES.

www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.348244...0002425151844&type=3
Last edit: 11 years 4 days ago by Kayaker Greg.
The following user(s) said Thank You: FlyingFish

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11 years 4 days ago #16956 by Kocho
Replied by Kocho on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
What kind of foam is this (the "good", firm one) that you say can be heated and shaped? Source? Also, if you have seen a Bumfortable seat, is it the same kind of material? Thanks!

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11 years 4 days ago - 11 years 4 days ago #16957 by Kayaker Greg
I would expect the Bumfortable to be of quality foam. Just watch out for the bedrolls available from many department stores, they are mostly extremely soft and I would expect cheaper foam. Firm foam is best for support, moulding to shape and working with. This is the foam I have found to be the best, its available in different sizes here in NZ and many different thickness's which is handy, but have no idea where you might be able to find it where you are from. I see they call it EVA foam.

www.pararubber.co.nz/product.php?id_product=402
Last edit: 11 years 4 days ago by Kayaker Greg.

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11 years 4 days ago #16958 by Kocho
Replied by Kocho on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
Thanks! I had Bumfortable seat a while back, so was asking as a point of reference. EVA foam is used to pad SUP boards, so now I have an idea what yours is like, I guess...

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11 years 4 days ago #16961 by wesley
Replied by wesley on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
Bill, I recommend if you have not already, paddle your SR 5-8 times and first make sure you have the leg length where you want it. Then if you have some boat stands, sit it the ski on the stands and start noting where you need the padding. If you don't have stands, you could take the rudder off and sit in the ski while being careful not to damage the venturi or just sit in on flat water and take mental notes where you need the padding. Like Greg said pad out where you calves are. This will help to keep your knees together for a better paddling position. Then you will need some in the hip area realizing that when your knees are extended for leg drive, you will have more space between hip and boat. I generally suggest about 1/4 inch room on each side. Just use duct tape and tape foam in these areas while sanding/cutting down the foam for a tailored fit. Then you can retape for a more permanent wear or use some adhesive once you get it exactly like you want it. Contact points then will be foot,calves,hips. Easy! Just take your time. I have padded out almost every boat I have owned. I have often taken some sand paper with me, paddle the ski for few minutes, then sand some, paddle, sand, until I get the perfect fit. I have only been in a few skis that need no padding at all. I have seen skis padded a lot to a perfect fit even if the bucket was a large bucket. I padded out my SR quite a bit for a perfect fit. Hope this helps. Wesley, SurfskiRacing.com and Stellar

Wesley Echols
SurfskiRacing.com
#1 in Surfski Reviews.

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11 years 3 days ago #16967 by Newbflat
@ westley.. Thanks for the tips. I have been paddling it since last summer with a few months off do to a back injury. I probably have close to 100 days in the boat now. I paddle flat water mostly ( overcoming a lot of old and new injuries) so the fit hasn't been a big issue. Lately I've been going out in a bit more bouncy water so the fit issue has become well, an issue. My butt fits the bottom of the bucket well but the bucket flares outward towards the top. I will fill it out there and hope it will help keep the ski from rocking under my butt as much. The contact points I'm most interested in are the calves. I can see how these if in the right spot it might give you a lot of feel on what's happening with the boat and some control and dampening of boat motion. I miss this coming from the white water world. That snug fit offers so much control and transmits so much info. Thanks for the tips!

@ Kayaker Greg.... Love your outfitting work. I was looking for your photos the other day and couldn't find them. Thanks for posting the link. They definitely give me ideas and I'm confident that the snake skin outfitting is at least a couple of tenths faster just from the pattern alone!

@ kocho.... Watch out with some of that EVA foam. A lot of it is soft and rubbery and works well for impact absorption and point load relief but is too squishy for outfitting....IMHO. It's also difficult to cut and sand. Try something like 'minicell' foam. It's a crosslink polyethylene foam that is closed cell and firm. It 'sands' ok with corse sand paper or 'dragons skin' metallic sanding screen and cuts easily with a sharp thin blade knife. You can get in thin sheets or blocks and is the standard material for outfitting in whitewater kayak and sea kayaks in the US. Google 'minicell foam' and check images. You should recognize the dark gray foam used so commonly in water sports ... At least here in the US.

FENN Bluefin S
FENN Swordfish S carbon hybrid
Epic V8 double gen 2
Lot and lots of DK rudders.


Had:
Stellar SEL excel (gen 2)
Stellar SR excel (gen2)
Stellar S18s g1 (excel)
Epic V10 Double (performance)
Stellar SR (gen 1)
V10 sport (gen 2)
V10 (Gen 2)
Beater SEL (gen 1)

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11 years 3 days ago #16968 by Kayaker Greg
Yeah I've always known it as mini cell foam but when looking it up on Para Rubbers website where I get it from noticed it was called EVA foam. So who knows, but you definitely don't want the soft squishy stuff, firm is good.

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11 years 3 days ago #16969 by Kocho
Replied by Kocho on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
Minicell foam is commonly used in the US for boat outfitting, but I don't think it is the same as EVA foam necessarily...

A quick search shows post like this:

www.dagorhir.com/forums/index.php?topic=24566.0

I know minicell comes in at least 2 different densities/firmness grades and local paddling stores sell both. I did not know it can be shaped by heat - I got to try on a small piece and see of it works as it would be rather handy for some curved surfaces under the deck where I usually stick it for cushioning (seats For kayaks I usually carve out of a big thick piece).

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11 years 3 days ago #16970 by PaddleFaster
Many places at times incorrectly identify and sell both EVA and Minicell as being one in the same, so finding the exact material you want requires a purchase from a foam sales dedicated seller.

An interesting tidbit from a foam to order website...

"Minicell foam is very similar to EVA foam, the only thing that is different is ." EVA foam is sun proof and minicell foam is not.


www.foamforyou.com/minicell_foam.htm

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11 years 3 days ago #16971 by PaddleFaster
Should have say "may require purchase from a foam dedicated seller."

Sorry about that...

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11 years 3 days ago #16973 by Newbflat

PaddleFaster wrote: EVA foam is sun proof and minicell foam is not.


Interesting.. i can only say that my whitewater boats lived outside and had there fair share of sun over the years and never saw any photo degradation of minicell. I will keep that in mind with anything that might see a lot of sun..

Bill

FENN Bluefin S
FENN Swordfish S carbon hybrid
Epic V8 double gen 2
Lot and lots of DK rudders.


Had:
Stellar SEL excel (gen 2)
Stellar SR excel (gen2)
Stellar S18s g1 (excel)
Epic V10 Double (performance)
Stellar SR (gen 1)
V10 sport (gen 2)
V10 (Gen 2)
Beater SEL (gen 1)

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11 years 3 days ago #16980 by Physio
Replied by Physio on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
this has turned into a post about foam, however I think we need to re address the original question, regarding fitting out a ski with increased support and points of contact with the ski.

would be keen to here from the experts, but I would not have anything which might impede a good leg drive "like foam beside your calf as suggested". Coming from white water where forward speed is not primary goal then leg drive and rot of your hips during stroke is prob not critical, however it is in the ski.

??

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11 years 3 days ago - 11 years 3 days ago #16981 by Kayaker Greg
If you have a look at my ski fit outs Physio, in no way do they impede leg drive. Nor is my rotation effected.
Last edit: 11 years 3 days ago by Kayaker Greg.

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11 years 3 days ago #16982 by Physio
Replied by Physio on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
yep i realize that not meant to imply seat padding wasnt useful, i just thought you guys may have missed when the original poster put

"The contact points I'm most interested in are the calves. I can see how these if in the right spot it might give you a lot of feel on what's happening with the boat and some control and dampening of boat motion."

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11 years 3 days ago #17000 by Ranga
Replied by Ranga on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
Just a thought, get a ski you can paddle without having to outfit it to be comfortable or to control it.

The most I would do is to have side bolsters if the seat was too wide.

I don't see any top paddler stuffing around with all sorts of padding except to get themselves higher in the seat. They would need to arrive days before any race they do around the world to outfit their skis. They generally just jump on and go.

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11 years 3 days ago #17005 by Kayaker Greg
Ahh yeah but we are all different and its not till you have spent a couple of hours that some issues arise. Whats comfortable for one person is uncomfortable for another, and I've yet to find any ski or kayak that I have not needed to modify to work for me, and yes I have had an Epic, actually could not get that one to work for me even with modification and had to sell it. Happy with the fit outs and comfort that it provides on my current skis, but thanks for your friendly advice.

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11 years 3 days ago #17006 by Newbflat

Ranga wrote: Just a thought, get a ski you can paddle without having to outfit it to be comfortable or to control it.

The most I would do is to have side bolsters if the seat was too wide.

I don't see any top paddler stuffing around with all sorts of padding except to get themselves higher in the seat. They would need to arrive days before any race they do around the world to outfit their skis. They generally just jump on and go.


I did..I tried the 4 beginner/ intermediate skies available to me think evo/ epic 10 s/ fein xt and stellar SR. Of all those the SR fit the best. But that doesn't mean It fit perfect. And I think you answered your own question about the top paddlers.

It seems to me you should be buying a boat with the hull that suits your paddling style/ level/ proformance requirments rather than on the bucket fit.... Assuming you fit. It took nearly 30 years for whitewater boats to finally come with adjustable fittings for a quickly ajustable universal fit. Boats use to come bare bones and you were expected to fit it out yourself. The nice thing about that is your not restricted to a certain brand or model just because of seat shape. It seems to me that some day skis might get to a point where your buying the hull you desire and the bucket area comes with a fit kit to make it fit you. After all , it's really all about the hull isn't it?

I'm not looking to lock myself in or restrict myself in any way that inhibits hip rotation. Just exploring what people have done to fit there boat to them and what worked and what didn't.
Does it not seem smart to fit your boat to your body for controle as snugly as possible until it stops being helpful?

Bill

FENN Bluefin S
FENN Swordfish S carbon hybrid
Epic V8 double gen 2
Lot and lots of DK rudders.


Had:
Stellar SEL excel (gen 2)
Stellar SR excel (gen2)
Stellar S18s g1 (excel)
Epic V10 Double (performance)
Stellar SR (gen 1)
V10 sport (gen 2)
V10 (Gen 2)
Beater SEL (gen 1)

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11 years 2 days ago #17008 by steveb
Replied by steveb on topic Re: Fit.. Questions on how.
I use a PADZ seat pad, Minicell foam shaped to fit and glued in with DAP Weldwood contact cement. The cement can be removed with lacquer thinner. Custom fit, secure, easily removed.
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The following user(s) said Thank You: Newbflat

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11 years 2 days ago #17010 by Newbflat
@steveb... What's the surface on those PADZ like? Is it slick or like smooth cut minicell? Thanks for the photos by the way.

Bill

FENN Bluefin S
FENN Swordfish S carbon hybrid
Epic V8 double gen 2
Lot and lots of DK rudders.


Had:
Stellar SEL excel (gen 2)
Stellar SR excel (gen2)
Stellar S18s g1 (excel)
Epic V10 Double (performance)
Stellar SR (gen 1)
V10 sport (gen 2)
V10 (Gen 2)
Beater SEL (gen 1)

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