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amhacker22
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03/19/2024 08:16PM  
Hello!

I’m installing a seat and a foot brace on a cedar strip Original Merlin solo canoe. I’m just wondering about how far back of center you all like your solo seat. I’m thinking about 6 inches, but I’d love to get your thoughts.

Also, I ordered this from Northstar canoe yesterday. It’s here today with standard shipping. Well done, Northstar!

Thanks, everyone!
 
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justpaddlin
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03/21/2024 09:12AM  
I think the Merlin is asymmetric right? In my asymmetric Merlin II the leading edge of the seat is 9 inches behind the center. I think the solo seats in my tandems were 9 to 11 inches behind center. You can get solid estimates for Swift boats just by measuring the pictures with a scale. You could also sit on a small cooler to get an idea of where your butt wants to be. Personally if I had to pick a number I wouldn't go closer to center than 9 inches since a bow-heavy boat doesn't handle well and I want my day pack or dog in front of me.
 
03/21/2024 09:43AM  
Front edge of the seat on my NS Trillium is ~6" behind center.

Front edge of the seat on my NS Magic is more like 3.5" behind center.

It's possible that the Trillium placement was not "stock", but the Magic for sure is.
 
justpaddlin
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03/21/2024 02:57PM  
The numbers from sns made me curious so I measured my Keewaydin 15 more carefully. 8'2" from the tip of the front deck and the deck overhangs the hull by 0.25" or so...so the boat is a touch over 15
feet overall. The seat is contoured in the plan view so I think it's effectively 7-8 inches behind center and maybe closer to 7. I think I was too quick to assume that 9 inches was normal from a few measurements taken in the past. On sns' Magic, I wonder if it's closer to center because it's a sitting boat and sitting vs kneeling puts your weight further back. Your six inch plan might be just right.


 
amhacker22
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03/21/2024 05:15PM  
Thanks!

I’m probably going with 6 inches back. It looks like it belongs there. I’ll let you know how it goes.
 
03/21/2024 08:52PM  
I built a cedar strip Merlin a few years ago and debated how far back from center to place the seat. Finally settled at 6 inches. No regrets. Two trips to the BW with it, big waters, big wind. Lots of scrapes and miles later, this boat fits me like spray paint. But then I started fretting how low to hang the seat. Figured that would be easier to change if it didn't seem right. Same result, no regrets.
 
amhacker22
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03/22/2024 09:55AM  
Thanks!

I just got the Northstar seat drops, and I’m going to start with full length. I think 6 inches is the number. It looks right, and that leaves the footbrace just shy of the front thwart.

Im looking forward to giving this a try.
 
03/25/2024 03:56PM  
solo set up thread

This thread has a lot of good ideas. I have always had a movable seat in my solos. It sometimes difficult to adjust trim with just packs or dogs or for a better way in the wind. My current solution is parallel rails to attach both seat and yoke. My part of the above thread is toward the bottom. Here is my MR Indy ready to portage. Many more pics in the thread.
 
03/25/2024 04:24PM  
Sedges, that's pretty brilliant. Thanks for sharing!

EDIT: ....and that old thread on solo outfitting was well worth the read.
 
03/25/2024 07:29PM  
Brilliant is a real compliment!

The concept does work well on the water and at the portage landing. I've set up 4 solos this way over the years. The first was a woodstrip based on a Rushton design. It had a fixed yoke and the seat was too far back AND still too crowded with the yoke. I built the rail system before a 10 day Quetico solo with lots of portaging. It worked so good that I modified all the solos that came after - the Mad River Independent, a Dagger Sojourn and a woodstrip William English Model 20 set up solo for a big, heavy paddler.

It takes a lot of attention to lay out and measurements, but it is really quite simple.
 
timf1981
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04/16/2024 03:19AM  
I will get measurements in the morning on how far back the middle seat is on my Wenonah MN3 solo canoe is.
Its been on 5 solo trips.
Plenty of room to slide those pack forward and rear to get the nose pointed up wind or down.
With a destination in mind i can travel at 4-4.25 mph.

Last spring i took a prism on a 4 day trip. I thought i would get used to the sketchiness. Never did.

This year i will be converting a MN2 to a solo. Hopefully i will be able to put a sliding seat in and keep the current standard portage yolk
 
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