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PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2016 3:24 pm 
knight of the folding kayak realm
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Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
Yes, Apathizer, Simon was just demonstrating frame orientation using what he had on hand. I'm trying to retrofit my Feathercraft sling seat to the Quest by suspending it from the Quest seat frame side rails. Simon used his seat to illustrate where the forces my attempt to do so would place too much stress on the plastic rail supports affixed to the Quest ribs.

I've tried installing the seat as the boat was shipped to me and also with Simon"s (and Pakboat's) recommendation to drill out the rear retention clip for the sternwise cross brace of the seat sling so it can be moved forward to drop my butt. But that modifcation does not accomplish solving my big problem which is that the 4" elevation of the bow-wise crossbrace is very awkward and uncomfortable for me. I have a very long hip to knee proportion. The kayak is annoyingly tipsy with the factory seat height and I waste too much energy keeping it from flip flopping from chine to chine. It's perfect if I just sit on a pad in the empty hull but Simon (and I) feel this might put undue stress on the frame and skin over time.

By the way, any suggestions you could make on this would be welcome.

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PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2016 11:37 pm 
knight of the folding kayak realm

Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:09 pm
Posts: 262
The only thing I can think of would be to send the seat back to see/confirm there's an issue with the seat. Maybe Pakboats will either give you another seat, or sell you one for a significant discount. A new seat is only $110, but since you don't need the back-band they might give it to you even less. If there's an issue with your seat, they might even exchange it free of charge.

I'm just speculating since it seems you've gone through quite a bit of trouble.

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Pakboats Quest 155.

'I actually read the Bible quite frequently. Can I tell you why? I stay in a lot of hotels. And I like to scare my kids before bed.' Jon Stewart


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PostPosted: Thu May 05, 2016 1:56 am 
knight of the folding kayak realm
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:46 am
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Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
Unfortunately, there is nothing "defective" about the seat assembly, it is just how it was designed. Apparently they had enough complaints about the "too high" seat early on so they moved the rear sling support forward in later production -- mine is an early example that was used as a trade show demo. Even modified it doesn't work for my body geometry. I'll invent something eventually to make it usable. I paid 30% below list price for it, so I really can't complain (though I guess I have been doing just that.)

If you look on YouTube there is a video review of the Quest 135 and you can see the paddler in it is clearly experiencing, the same way I do, the squirrelly too-high center of gravity in the boat as she paddles it.

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Current:
Feathercraft Wisper
Pakboat Quest 135
Pakboat Puffin 12
Pakboat Swift 14
Greenland SOF
P & H Easky 15LV
Previous:
Feathercraft Kahuna
Feathercraft K-1 Expedition
Pakboat XT-15


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PostPosted: Thu May 05, 2016 10:32 am 
lord high faltbotmeister

Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:51 pm
Posts: 602
Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Although this isn't an issue for me, as my thighs don't touch the front seat cross tube, I am interested in possible solutions for Kerry

One idea that I think would work would be to aluminum rivet 4 of the black plastic u-shaped clips (of the same type as the 2 on the seat cross tube) to the 4 ends of the seat rails, then rest the standard seat set up (albeit with these modifid rails) directly on the seat support ribs, "cushioned" by the u-shaped clips. I can't imagine the rib tubing deforming under the load.

You might also need to shorten the central sleeve tubes on the 2 seat cross tube assemblies in order to place the whole seat assembly low enough on the ribs

You could also use the standard black rubber bands to tie the seat rails down, so that the seat wouldn't come out when the kayak is upside down

You'd want to convince Pakboats to sell you the 4 u-shaped clips first of course, or buy two rear seat cross tubes from them and dismantle them for the u-clips

What do you think?

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Simon

Pakboats Quest 135, Nautiraid Narak 460, 416 & K1 (sold my 550), First light 420, Feathercraft Wisper, Fujita Alpina AL-1 400, Incept k40 (for sale)
Non-folders: Cape Falcon F1. Beth sailing canoe, 2014 Hobie Adventure Island


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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 2:48 pm 
knight of the folding kayak realm
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:46 am
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Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
Interesting idea.

When I get back from Tahoe I have some experiments to try with the seat. I did consider contacting Pakboat for some spare parts -- particularly their stout rubber bands. Maybe they could provide some of the frame clip assemblies as well.

I will likely do some mockups using nylon cable ties to get dimensions and positioning worked out before making more serious mods to the existing components. And find some equivalent diameter tubing to sacrifice for test pieces.

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Current:
Feathercraft Wisper
Pakboat Quest 135
Pakboat Puffin 12
Pakboat Swift 14
Greenland SOF
P & H Easky 15LV
Previous:
Feathercraft Kahuna
Feathercraft K-1 Expedition
Pakboat XT-15


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PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2016 11:52 pm 
knight of the folding kayak realm
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:46 am
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Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
Simon and "Apathizer": I finally got some seat time in the Quest 135, with the seat modified per A's instructions. What a difference moving the rear cross bracket forward an inch and a half makes! Not only was the seat super comfortable but the boat tracked beautifully with my center of gravity lower. I went with a friend to a very large lake north of town for a 6 hour outing. She was in my 15' P & H Easky 15LV hardshell, which is a reasonably fast and good tracking boat, and I had no trouble keeping pace with her, even when a small windy rainstorm hit us as we were crossing a wide part of the lake, causing strong diagonal waves and chop. I was using an 84" cedar Greenland paddle and found that the Feathercraft spray skirt from my FC Wisper fits the Quest perfectly. I did find it was more comfortable to have an 18" x 30" piece of ensolite closed cell foam slid in under my legs from the seat to the foot pegs. Otherwise, my heels rest awkwardly on the front rib.

I'm really pleased with the boat's handling and feel -- and so easy to load. The coaming fits perfectly between my Thule crossbars, carrying it hull up. This boat is going to get a lot of use!

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Current:
Feathercraft Wisper
Pakboat Quest 135
Pakboat Puffin 12
Pakboat Swift 14
Greenland SOF
P & H Easky 15LV
Previous:
Feathercraft Kahuna
Feathercraft K-1 Expedition
Pakboat XT-15


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PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2016 3:57 am 
lord high faltbotmeister

Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2011 1:51 pm
Posts: 602
Location: Colombo, Sri Lanka
Great to hear that the standard early seat mod worked for you and that you're enjoying your new kayak! It makes me feel (slightly) less evangelical in singing its praises :-)

Looking forward to hearing how it stacks up against your Wisper

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Simon

Pakboats Quest 135, Nautiraid Narak 460, 416 & K1 (sold my 550), First light 420, Feathercraft Wisper, Fujita Alpina AL-1 400, Incept k40 (for sale)
Non-folders: Cape Falcon F1. Beth sailing canoe, 2014 Hobie Adventure Island


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PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2016 12:38 pm 
knight of the folding kayak realm
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:46 am
Posts: 465
Location: inland Pennsylvania, USA
My only gripe about the Quest is the inaccessibility of the valves on the sponsons. The Feathercraft's sponsons are inflated using long flexible tubes with valves on the ends that you can reach from the cockpit with the boat assembled. Having to peel back the stern deck on the Quest to blow them up and deflate them is a little annoying, though not that problematic since the deck comes up so easily. I had forgotten to bring the pump on this outing so I had to blow them up by direct mouth contact -- since the valves are not staggered, reaching the middle one on each side was kind of tricky.

Once I had loaded the boat on the car after the trip (it carried nicely hull side up on my Thule rack) I reached up and opened the stern deck again, which drained the collected drip water out of it and allowed me to reach in and release the valves to deflate it. I was also able to draw out the flotation bag from the hull this way. I learned the hard way with my first Feathercraft to not leave the sponsons or float bags inflated on hot days when the boat is out of the water --a ruptured tube is a drag, though with Pakboats the multiple sponsons mean you can still paddle with one deflated as long as you deflate the same one on the other side. We discovered that when a mis-installed seat punctured one of the six sponsons of my ex-boyfriend's XT-15 on our first trip with it. It was very easy to patch when we got home, but just balancing it by deflating the one on the other side meant the boat paddled fine while we were out.

Honestly, the Quest felt very similar to my Wisper, despite being 20" shorter. At less than 25% the price of a new Wisper, that is pretty remarkable. A Wisper is currently $3800 USD/$4950 CAD. I think the detachable rubber skeg from the Wisper may work on the Quest too. It attaches with narrow straps that fasten to the deck rigging. Not that I felt that the Quest needed it in the conditions we were in, but it might in stronger current or wind.

Despite my fussing that the seat front lifted my thighs too high it turned out to be perfect on the water. My thighs press up under the outside edge of the foredeck snugly, just as they would into thigh hooks or straps, giving me great control of the kayak. The Feathercraft spray skirt was a perfect fit, tight as a drum across the cockpit so that it shed the considerable drip from my Greenland paddle instead of pooling. The only reason there was water in it was that I paddled for about an hour without the spray skirt before deciding I was tired of having a soggy lap.

I highly recommend my ensolite "lining" of the forepart of the cockpit. I tucked the corners of the foam between the side frame and skin under the seat which I think will help to cushion possible abrasion by the seat hardware onto the skin. Should also help to keep the inside of the boat cleaner and makes sliding feet in and out easier. The rib ahead of the footpegs is in a bad position for me, right below my ankles -- the foam keeps it from cutting into them. I've found over the years that it's nice to have that small chunk of closed cell foam with me on paddle outings anyway. I can pull it out if I need something to sit on at lunch stops and also it is handy to have to kneel on when assembling and dissembling or loading the boat. If ensolite is hard to come by (Army surplus stores here sell it) a half of a closed cell foam yoga mat works too, though they are usually not as durable or slippery as regular ensolite.

_________________
Current:
Feathercraft Wisper
Pakboat Quest 135
Pakboat Puffin 12
Pakboat Swift 14
Greenland SOF
P & H Easky 15LV
Previous:
Feathercraft Kahuna
Feathercraft K-1 Expedition
Pakboat XT-15


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2016 2:36 am 
knight of the folding kayak realm

Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:09 pm
Posts: 262
Just a quick note to thank you for all the detailed information. :D

Now that you've made some minor modifications, it seems like comfort and control is pretty well dialed in. That your paddling experience with the 135 is similar to the Wisper speaks volumes considering how much less the 135 is. Even though the 135 is almost 20" shorter, I wonder if the waterline length is about the same. The Wisper has a fair degree of rocker (minimal on the Quest), and both ends are significantly more tapered.

Again, all this seems to speak to the less sexy, but highly practical design of Pakboats. Their yaks are designed to be functional first and foremost, with minimal -if any- consideration for aesthetics. That's one of the reasons they aren't as well known in addition to limited marketing.

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Pakboats Quest 155.

'I actually read the Bible quite frequently. Can I tell you why? I stay in a lot of hotels. And I like to scare my kids before bed.' Jon Stewart


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