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Thread: Kneeling Saddle Review

  1. #1
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    Default Kneeling Saddle Review

    Background

    I thought it might be best to give an idea of the background of this review to see if it is valid to you. I only have two years of canoeing experience so i am no expert, mostly on lochs with only two moving water trips the second of which was a recent trip with Perthshire Wood Canvas and Bandy for a Spey decent, these guys are far more experienced than i am so i can use their view of water conditions for the review. For my first year of paddling usualy with Pink Otter i would always sit on the seat wearing muck boots which was great, but the more i wanted to progress my paddling i wanted to kneel which for me made a massive difference, things became so much easier with alot more control, the problem being the pain and numbness after a short period. I am not Canadian, i hear they watch the telly, have their dinner and even sleep in a kneeling position but as a Glaswegian the only time i kneel is when in what we call the HUEWEY position about six inches from the pan after too much beer and curry. When i met Bandy and PWC to plan the trip they suggested that i would need a kneeling thwart, so away i went and made one, i do a little woodworking and it doesn't come much easier than a thwart, i tried many different positions and angles not really liking it, two main problems;
    1. Entrapment, i felt stuck in there and with no real whitewater experience i just wasn't happy with it and the muck boots would definately be out.
    2. When leaning the boat to one side the thwart obviously moves with the boat therefore you are not horizontal if sitting on the thwart.
    So what are the alternitives, well there doesn't seem to be many, so i thought about making something to sit on, but i only had a week before the trip, then i found this.
    Stingray Kneeling Saddle


    I thought it was worth a punt as i didn't have much time left. I informed PWC and Bandy of my purchase and after some John Wayne/Raw Hide and Bonanza exchanges they seemed to be quite interested. PWC had pointed out there may be a chance of chaffing, which i thought may be valid, so out came the lycra cycling shorts with padded insert just incase. I also wanted some ankle support but didn't have alot of time to fabricate anything so a swimming noodle cut down would have to do, i also knew the muck boots wern't going to work so i looked for a pair of neoprene knee lenth boots with no luck so opted for lomo's ankle boots (lomo are working on knee lenth boots and should be ready in the Autumn, prototipe looks great) so this was to be my set up.


    The first time i sat in the boat with this set up it just felt right.
    So on with the trip, day one was normal river flat sections with rapids grade 1 and 2 the saddle does not move around in the boat, it is attatched to the mat which you are kneeling on so you can grip it with your legs and it wont move which i found great in the rapids when sitting in the middle of the boat. Onto the flat sections and i would move it slightly to one side to lean the boat over, again very comfortable, the only problem being the lenth of the noodles i had cut which were too long when the saddle is on one side of the boat. After about three hours of paddling we stopped for lunch, normally i would be in agony after kneeling for this amount of time but apart from a little numbness it was night and day better and i knew i had made the wright choice for me. Day two was basically one long rapid with bigger rapids all the way, we came across a rapid just before the washing machine which we did not expect, it was BIG! PWC thought it may have been a grade 2+/3 and the biggest he had paddled, during this i had my legs spread while sitting on it paddling on both sides and it did not move, then the washing machine no problem. Unfotunately we had to abandon the next day due to the very high river levels, i suppose what i am trying to say is both the more experienced guys i was with thought it was very much tougher than normal so while i accept this saddle is not for whitewater canoes it certainly worked for me on this trip. I don't want this to sound patronising coming from a novice like me, as i may well change to a thwart one day as i gain experience, but for me and my type of paddling mostly lochs with occassional rivers, no bigger than grade 3 then this seems to work really well, i am sure people will have opinions as to why this saddle is a bad idea but i can't see any advantages using a thwart over this if it is comfortable for you.

    Spec

    Weight. Nothing / too light for scales / lighter than thwart / floats

    Height. Two sizes. 19cm / 24cm ( i have the 24cm one )

    Cost. 65

    I am working on a more permanent solution for ankle support than the noodles as this really does make a difference.

    I don't mean to put down thwarts as they are clearly the most popular way to go, but this may be an alternative if you are unsure about fitting a thwart. It is easy to get in and out of the boat and is quite versitile, as i say i only have 2 years experience so i am no expert but i find this comfortable and feel safe using this for my modest paddling ability.

    Saddle with noodles and caribiner on loop for attatching to centre thwart


    The way it comes


    In the boat


    I sruggled to find any alternative to the kneeling thwart, so i hope this may help somebody in the same situation as me.

    Thanks for reading

    Alan

  2. #2
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    Good review, I have to say I Agree with you on the kneeling thwart not being suitable for heeling the boat. Where did you purchase the saddle? Was it online or local to you? I'd definitely be interested in getting one myself.
    Cheers
    Geoff
    This was a valued rug? This was aaa : yea it really tied the room together!

  3. #3
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    Hi Geoff

    I got it online

    www.aiguillealpine.co.uk

    Or you can google stingray kneeling saddle and get it.

    Cheers Alan

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    Great review Alan,

    You certainly seemed very comfortable on the trip and had no problems with the flat or lumpy bits encountered.
    I think this is a real alternative to a kneeling thwart. I also like the idea that its easily transferable between canoes and removeable giving lots of alternatives.

    Cheers
    Bandy

    CLICK THE LINK TO THE SCOTTISH CANOE TRIPS CHANNEL FOR VIDEOS OF MY TRIPS : http://www.youtube.com/user/bandy598



  5. #5
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    Very good review of a great bit of kit. I have always got on fairly well with a kneeling thwart and thought there was no alternative, but it's a bit of a wriggle sometimes getting in and out and i do like the look of this all-rounder saddle, especially as you just remove it when you don't want it and you then have more space in your boat for stowing kit when tandem paddling.

    For those who are interested, the high flow conditions on the Spey on Thursday caused a monster standing wave pattern at the confluence of the River Avon (itself thundering along) which caused my heavily-laden boat to get air and nearly flip! The washing machine was hardly noticeable by comparison. Almost a - and Alan on his saddle coped better than I!
    PWC
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    Know less, carry more - you're in a canoe !

  6. #6
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    I made myself something similar out of closed cell foam with the height set to squeeze fit under the front seat when not required - and for portaging. It means I can paddle other peoples boats without needing bespoke outfitting.


    .. but I end up fitting centre seats to the boats that I keep longer term.

  7. #7
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    Both neat ideas. Good review too.

    TGB
    May the gentleness of morning, greet your silent passage through endless waters...

    May all your winds be gentle. And for ww - May it rain the night before.

  8. #8
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    Super information, may sort my lower back problem on long trips, does anyone know if other manufacturers produce a similar item,
    many thanks.
    PC

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by northconnor View Post
    Super information, may sort my lower back problem on long trips, does anyone know if other manufacturers produce a similar item,
    many thanks.
    PC
    I bought one for myself a few weeks back...I'm 5' 6"... 63kg and decided on the smaller of the two sizes. I have the Aiguille floatation blocks, plus some other gear they make, so I know the quality is good.

    I have been using a home made block system throughout this year, and been so happy with that, that I have removed the kneeling thwarts from all my canoes. I can trim the canoe much easier, I can get in and out of the boat so much more easier too. And I find it far more comfortable.

    When I saw the Aiguille kneeling block I thought this would be even better than my home made job, and at that price it was easier for me to just buy theirs. My son already paddles with one of their kneeling mats, so I figured I could save myself the cost of buying the Aiguille mat.....what I didn't realise from their site was that the mat is included in the price! And it velcroes to the block!.

    I used it for the first time yesterday, and as I have said above, I have been paddling throughout this year on my own set-up, and now after using this one I certainly won't be going back to a kneeling thwart.

    Note: Most of my padddling is flat water, but I used my 'crude' version on a rather bumpy coastal paddle, (so bumpy that we had to abort the trip half way) and I was still very happly to be using the saddle, especially for the quick re-trimming of the canoe at times.

    I'm very pleased with Aiguille's set up and think the quality and value for money is great.

    No connection with Aiguille other than being a happy customer of some 4 years now, so happy to recommend.
    Everyone has their own particular likes and dislikes, I personally much prefer a kneeling saddle (had a WW one, but it wasn't the answer) and this makes my paddling much more enjoyable.

    Hope this assists anyone wondering if this might also be the answer for them too.


    Davy

  10. #10
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    Davy,
    thanks for the endorsement, its always better if you can chat to a user of the kit before you commit to buy one, the ability to easily trim the boat is also a bonus as you said, do you find it moves in the boat when it gets wet?
    thanks

  11. #11
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    Very interested in this idea - cheers for a great review. Am I right to say that you can't heel a boat over using one of these? Not an issue in my narrow solo boat so would be ideal for that but I'm wondering how it would be in a wider boat that one would usually heel over to paddle solo?

    I usually find with kneeling thwarts that there is a tendency to slide forward/downward at a slow but constant rate all day which annoys me after a while. Think I'll try and make one of these like barelyafloat's one and see how I fare.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredster View Post
    Am I right to say that you can't heel a boat over using one of these? Not an issue in my narrow solo boat so would be ideal for that but I'm wondering how it would be in a wider boat that one would usually heel over to paddle solo?

    .
    I just tuck over to my paddling side and the saddle fits into the shape of the boat quite well.

    ...another thing I've found (that works well for me ) is turning the saddle around, so the back is at the front...doesn't match up to the velcro but nothing seems to move to much and I get good paddling results this way too...depends upon your body shape maybe.

    No problem with moving around when wet (as yet anyway) as it's attached to the kneeling pad, which you have your weight on. It's good too, to be able to move to the back of the saddle and sit a little higher to help the legs a little...and of course it's pretty easy to just put your legs out in front of you and give them a good stretch when you want.

    Good seat to take ashore when it's time for tea and cakes!

    I'm a pretty tight sod but I'm very pleased with what I exchanged my hard earned cash for...

    Oh!...Shock / horror!!! I weighed myself today (once with the Merlin and once without so I could deduct my weight to see how much the Merlin weighed) and found I am 70 kg!!!!!! Oh well...such is life...I'm not giving up the home made cakes!
    Should add I'm 57 I suppose...so not that flexible.....so you can compare.

    Davy.
    Last edited by Davy Crockett; 6th-November-2011 at 05:53 PM.

  13. #13
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    Davy,

    Does the kneeling block block fit in the Merlin or did you use it in another of your fleet? I have been thinking of getting one.


    Nick

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    We've had a number of opportunities to try the Aiguille saddle over the past year or two, and I've been most impressed. I'd echo previous comments about the build quality, and I'd agree that they are convenient, comfortable and versatile.

    We're not looking at a genuine substitute for the solid connection (or fully secured additional buoyancy) we can get through a fixed saddle / pedestal: for really throwing a canoe around (or more serious self-rescue situations) we can do better - but for soloing the sort of tandem canoes commonly used in this country, on the quiet rivers and sheltered open water we most commonly paddle, the advantages remain considerable: ease of adjustment for trim, ease of positioning in either gunwale, ease of transfer from boat to boat and doubtless more.

    If there's a downside, it's the out-of-the-packet issue of car-topping (especially during shuttles): unless you're blessed with lots of space in your vehicle, some way of lashing the whole lot into the canoe might come in handy!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blott View Post
    Davy,

    Does the kneeling block fit in the Merlin or did you use it in another of your fleet? I have been thinking of getting one.


    Nick
    I have been using my home made blocks in all of the 'fleet'...yesterday was the first real trial of the Aiguille, and it was in both the Yellowstone Solo and the Merlin...and yes it worked very well.

    I was actually trying out both canoes 'back to back' as I've decided that as I am paddling less nowadays, that the 'fleet' could really be reduced in size, so it's come down to picking which is the solo canoe best suited for my particular needs.

    This gave me the opportunity to really try out this kneeling block , as I wanted to compare both canoes in different wind conditions etc, and it was great to just shift the saddle forward to add a little more weight to the bows in a side / head wind, then quickly and easily move back again when in a sheltered area and wanting to flit in and out amongst the over- hanging trees.

    Also changing between canoes was a breeze, as I have removed the seats from both solo's now, I just plopped the saddle into which ever was the next one to use. And launching is so easy, just push off and sit down, no trying to fit legs under a seat or thwart.

    I have removed the kneeling thwarts from both the tandems too and use blocks when I am solo paddling...but in the Northwind I have removed both seats too, as Mrs Crockett prefers to kneel (as do I,) so a second kneeling saddle in the bows for her will allow easy trimming when paddling tandem too.

    I did go down the path of a roll as used by Becky Mason, to sit upon, but this didn't work for me, and as I said earlier I also tried a W/W saddle, but this was too cumbersome.

    My trial saddle was 4 yoga blocks duct taped together, that I had used as a height guide for various designs of adjustable and Q/R kneeling thwarts. It was as I was sitting on the blocks contemplating yet another different variation of design that I realised I was sitting on something rather comfortable, that allowed me to move easily, and I could quickly hop in and out of the canoe (rather important for some of my 'stealth paddles').

    Then I saw the Aiguille saddle and thought "right" they have the ideal end result.

    When I placed the order with them I mentioned my story above, and they replied that it is much the same way they arrived at their fianal design.
    So...another 10 years in my workshop developing my idea and I would possibly have come up with the same result.....so I'm glad I found this review, saved me a lot of bother and I can get on paddling

    Davy.
    Last edited by Davy Crockett; 6th-November-2011 at 07:33 PM.

  16. #16
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    I have seen home made versions of the saddle used on long river trips of a week or so mostly by people who want to relax and sit between rapids and move forward to the saddle for more control. I have not seen this particular piece of kit but it looks very thoughtfully done.

    I had a Merlin II once and used it sitting and kneeling with the stock seat. I never installed a saddle as the swedeform Merlin II is especially trim sensitive to me and dislikes bow heaviness..How did you do in the saddle with your weight transferred more forward than a normal kneeling position?
    "Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
    Signifying nothing." WS-prophecy about internet postings.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by yellowcanoe View Post
    I had a Merlin II once and used it sitting and kneeling with the stock seat. I never installed a saddle as the swedeform Merlin II is especially trim sensitive to me and dislikes bow heaviness..How did you do in the saddle with your weight transferred more forward than a normal kneeling position?
    In the case of the Merlin, it is more of being (slightly) back from the normal kneeling/sitting position to give a lighter bow for flitting around when exploring, and then back to the usual (normal) position for better tracking. As you said, it does not like 'bow heavy'....one little bit!
    In my case, with the Merlin, it was more of being able to easily move back further (up to the rear thwart) to compensate for 'Fiz', my Border Collie sitting in front. When I first went out in the Merlin with 'Fiz', (before I removed the seat) not only did I have a dog in the front, but the Merlin behaved 'like a dog'...it was like having a sea anchor tied to the bow!
    Yes...the Merlin is rather 'trim sensitive', just takes a little getting used to her ways, but very enjoyable.



    Davy.

  18. #18
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    Well I got one of these. Stripped the seat from the Marlin and went for a paddle using the stingray. What a difference. Nice and comfortable without the pain of having to slide my feet in and out from beneath the seat. Takes the pressure off and the dead foot syndrome is virtually eliminated.
    A nice piece of kit.

    Blott

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blott View Post
    Takes the pressure off and the dead foot syndrome is virtually eliminated.
    Blott
    Right I'm sold

    How long till xmas?
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by joe.ford View Post
    Right I'm sold

    How long till xmas?
    Don't forget there are TWO sizes....the height given is from the base to the part that you actually sit upon...so you could try sitting on something that gives you both heights and see which is the most comfortable when sitting in the kneeling position ....if you get my drift.....

    Which size did you get Blott?

    Davy

  21. #21
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    Great thread, everyone, with thoughtful contributions.

    On the issue of heeling, even with a fixed pedestal, heeling is possible, but it's difficult with a typical 35+ inch beam. With ww boats, a 30" beam (or less) is typical, and heeling on a fixed, centered pedestal is quite easy.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davy Crockett View Post
    Don't forget there are TWO sizes....the height given is from the base to the part that you actually sit upon...so you could try sitting on something that gives you both heights and see which is the most comfortable when sitting in the kneeling position ....if you get my drift.....

    Which size did you get Blott?

    Davy
    I got the taller one so that it meant that my knees were not bent as far. It sits at gunnel height which is where the stock seat position was.

    Blott

  23. #23
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    One of these recently landed at my door. Looks like a well put together bit of kit. I'm a little dubious about the choice of polystyrene foam for the saddle though. Time will tell how it holds up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe.ford View Post
    Right I'm sold

    How long till xmas?
    I managed to get a Saddle for xmas

    Used it for the first time on Monday, quite a surprise as about 4 others had one too

    First impressions were good.

    I've heard of this thing called trim, I've even often wondered what it was. As perched on my plank of wood I was fixed in the 1 position, and no amount of luggage thrown into the front seemed to change the trim.

    So I just assumed it was just a term used to magically propel the boat along.

    Now I'm mobile on a saddle I can just slide myself to where I want, it made so much difference whilst paddling into the head wind.

    Even though it's just a block sitting on the floor with no fixings holding it into the boat, I felt more connected to the canoe than I did with the kneeling thwart that was fixed to the gunnels.

    Normally I can happily paddle for hours on the kneeling Thwart, it's just that I can only paddle for about 15mins before the pins and needles start and after about 30 I'm numb from the waist down. Which is fine, and dos'nt cause any problems. Until you come to a portage / the get out point, then things become fun.

    Unfortunately I don't get to have any of this fun anymore. After a couple of hours paddling with Blott on his magic mystery tour of the Ouse came the time to get out, and to my surprise I could still feel my lower limbs
    Last edited by joe.ford; 3rd-January-2012 at 06:38 PM. Reason: Speeling is getting better just, my puctuation is. terrIble
    SF Peterborough 14'
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  25. #25
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    Well done; you were half expecting to take an early bath but it didn't happen!! The trim is important; I found that when we got in at Houghton I was sitting about 8" further forward than normal and couldn't work out what was happening with a tail wind as the Merlin was all over the shop. i slid the saddle back to where it should be and all was well. The other thing is the relative freedom of getting in and out as there is no longer the contortion of getting the size 11's under the seat or thwart. I suspect that I will soon be removing my nice shaped thwart from my NC Pal.

    The trip was like a TV scene of the 60's...Stingray, Stingray!!

    Blott

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    I've got an Aiguille and thoroughly recommend it. I use it in all my canoes including converting a solo canoe for occasional tandem use with my partner. I angle it across the canoe on flatwater and paddle"Canadian style" kneeling in the chine.

  27. #27
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    This thread is exactly what I need!! I have the same problem as many on here which is the numb/soreness on a kneeling thwart. Just placing the order now . Brilliant!

  28. #28
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    Still love mine. Went down the Ardeche using it and it was brilliant and my fears of it slipping around in the canoe were unfounded. It stayed exactly where it should be but with 20 stone of me sitting on it I would hope so!

    Blott

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by TobyH View Post
    This thread is exactly what I need!! I have the same problem as many on here which is the numb/soreness on a kneeling thwart. Just placing the order now . Brilliant!
    Im very glad so many people find this thread of interest.

    I still use mine on all solo trips and still think it's the best solution for me. The only small problem I have is the bulk of it when transporting, but that's just a minor thing.

    Cheers

    Alan

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    So what size did people get ? What does the height relate to ?

    Cheers

    Paul

  31. #31
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    I was fortunate to be able to try both sizes before buying and went for the higher one so my knees didn't bend so far. I agree with 'Blott" that it is easier to trim the canoe as you just move the saddle to where you want it...plus I don't keep slipping off the thwart. I have to keep my thwart though as my son prefers to use that for ww...and we share the canoe!

  32. #32
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    First of all thank you Red Otter for posting this in the first place, the blog and the photos really make the review stand out. My other half showed me the post when she asked if I wanted one a s a birthday present and having read all the replies and measured the height of my canoe seats I am sold......

  33. #33
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    But they come in 3 colours now .

    Mine's in the post !

    Paul

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    I've got one in the post as well now

    The model range must have changed though as they are back to black only. And I think they must have changed the internal design to a lead block rather than polystyrene as they now weight 48Kg - at least according to their web site anyway!
    Happy paddling ,
    Rob.


  35. #35
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    I have one of these for my 16 foot prospector . Good bit of kit if not a bit too pricey for what it is. Don't worry it's not 48kg :-)

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    That is so simple in design , i shall have a go at making one , but with a shaped polystyrene block but covered in a thin carrymat (carrymatt wont slip n slide that much )

  37. #37
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    I have just ordered one of these.
    I like the ease of moving the trim and that it can be transferred from boat to boat.
    Ideal camp seat as well.
    I shall fettle a means of securing it in the boat otherwise it is just one more thing to chase after when swimming!
    Welding and fabrication for forum members.

  38. #38

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    I cannot recommend these highly enough. I have a 'bespoke' height (3" taller than normally available) due to being 6'8" tall and pinned and plated leg - completely comfortable and no 'dead leg' syndrome


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    I have just received confirmation from Aiguille that mine should arrive on Monday..........if the ice on the marina has melted I shall give it a test.
    Welding and fabrication for forum members.

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    I used mine for the first time on the water yesterday. It was a bright cold winter's day so sitting on it felt cosy under my bum (a nice surprise).

    First impressions were good. Its comfortable and worked well in the flat water conditions. I am used to a kneeling thwart and knee pads, so this was a very different feel, but I liked it.

    One thing I did notice was that when on a KT you can move your knees from "both on one side" to "spread apart" to "both on other side" whilst still paddling. This means you can alter you trim from side to side in an instant. You can also shuffle forward off the thwart to alter trim forwards and the thwart will be where you left it. To move trim with this it required me to put both hands on the gunnels, then move the saddle with my knees. Not necessarily a problem, but time will tell when I eventually use it on white water if this is an issue.

    I'm 6ft 4" with long legs so I bought the biggest one. I do find that I have to position the kneeling pad forward of the foam pad to get a good kneeling area. This means that the velcro attachment is only held in place by half the normal area, although it seems secure enough. I was interested to see that Richymo was able to get a "Bespoke" one made, so I may go back to the makers to investigate that.

    However, initial findings are that I like it, I wont be in a hurry to drill my latest canoe for a kneeling thwart just yet, and I "forgot " I was using it very quickly whilst out paddling yesterday, so that's a good point, eh?
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
    ~Cree Indian Proverb

  41. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al. View Post
    I used mine for the first time on the water yesterday. It was a bright cold winter's day so sitting on it felt cosy under my bum (a nice surprise).

    First impressions were good. Its comfortable and worked well in the flat water conditions. I am used to a kneeling thwart and knee pads, so this was a very different feel, but I liked it.

    One thing I did notice was that when on a KT you can move your knees from "both on one side" to "spread apart" to "both on other side" whilst still paddling. This means you can alter you trim from side to side in an instant. You can also shuffle forward off the thwart to alter trim forwards and the thwart will be where you left it. To move trim with this it required me to put both hands on the gunnels, then move the saddle with my knees. Not necessarily a problem, but time will tell when I eventually use it on white water if this is an issue.

    I'm 6ft 4" with long legs so I bought the biggest one. I do find that I have to position the kneeling pad forward of the foam pad to get a good kneeling area. This means that the velcro attachment is only held in place by half the normal area, although it seems secure enough. I was interested to see that Richymo was able to get a "Bespoke" one made, so I may go back to the makers to investigate that.

    However, initial findings are that I like it, I wont be in a hurry to drill my latest canoe for a kneeling thwart just yet, and I "forgot " I was using it very quickly whilst out paddling yesterday, so that's a good point, eh?
    Short video showing my arrangement - strapped in to glued anchor points. Worked well for me on the Dart last weekend.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  42. #42
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    Thanks for the review Al.
    My saddle arrived on Saturday but I have not had the chance to try it in a boat yet.
    This week hopefully.
    Welding and fabrication for forum members.

  43. #43
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    Only just found this (excellently written review, thank you) and I can't but help why more hasn't been heard of them.....if I can find the website, might well be tempted...……….

  44. #44
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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave rossetter View Post
    Thank you, looks really good if a bit pricey! I need to think on this...…..trouble is I will never really know without trying it??

  46. #46
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    Just another half penneth. In my OC1s I used a saddle, and in my WWRace boats a selection of folding thwarts, bucket seats and saddles, and I like saddles. I have a Palm Saddle, kindly given to me by a paddler in south wales leading to a most wonderful drive through middle Wales on a clear day in the snow when I collected it. I've used it a few times, and will probably replace my failsafe kneeling seat/thwart in due course. I don't think they are made anymore, but they do appear every now and then. They have a par of "wings "at the front to give a dashboard effect, and a seat at the back. Were it not for the awful faff to load photos I would up load one, but if anyone want to PM me their email address, I'll send one, or to someone who will load mine.

    Impcanoe

  47. #47
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    [QUOTE=Impcanoe;666113]Just another half penneth. In my OC1s I used a saddle, and in my WWRace boats a selection of folding thwarts, bucket seats and saddles, and I like saddles. I have a Palm Saddle, kindly given to me by a paddler in south wales leading to a most wonderful drive through middle Wales on a clear day in the snow when I collected it. I've used it a few times, and will probably replace my failsafe kneeling seat/thwart in due course. I don't think they are made anymore, but they do appear every now and then. They have a par of "wings "at the front to give a dashboard effect, and a seat at the back. Were it not for the awful faff to load photos I would up load one, but if anyone want to PM me their email address, I'll send one, or to someone who will load mine.

    Impcanoe[/QUOTE

    Thank you, I was wondering if there were any other sources for these, or had been!
    (I agree ref, the loading of photos!)

  48. #48
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    There was one recently on one of the sites, but I can't remember which. Not, I think, ebay, nor on here, but maybe Face book canoes and kayaks for sale. There is little doubt that Phill on Black Snow Saddles will "knock one up", and I could probably get mine to him to copy. Let me have your phone number and I can zip a photo across to day, (and to Black Snow...I do like the title as its "after" the product of shaping the foam.)

    I find all the kneeling set ups of others too low for me. I really need 10 inches for comfort. Just, after years of looking, found an old Hahn Slalom C1 from the days when they were deep and wide (as in the river in Pied Piper) but the seat is miles too low (although identical to the one I used to have) Debating with myself which system to substitute. It already has knee bars.

    Going back to the Palm Saddle and getting one, if I were looking I'd advertise on "UK Rivers Guide book", Face book pages "Canoes and kayaks for sale", "WW Open Canoe Group" and "C-boating uk". You may have to join for frww for some, and you are welcome to use my real name, Peter Halliwell, if it would help.

  49. #49
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    pm sent....thank you!

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Impcanoe"
    Were it not for the awful faff to load photos I would up load one
    Peter, you may not have spotted that there is now a facility (available to contributing members) to load photos direct from PC to post. Magikelly says in another post that it's unreliable but that appears to be down to file size - it failed the first time because I tried to upload the image below at 3477x2616 - I reduced it to 872x654 and it uploaded immediately. It shows the saddle in my C1 conversion from a Dagger Redline kayak. In this case, the saddle is attached to the two wooden beams, but for open boat use it would be easy enough to attach one to a couple of squares of carpet tile, giving the same functionality as the Aiguille one.
    Name:  DSCF1954.jpg
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  51. #51
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    I replaced the mouse eaten saddle in my old Ocoee, but I didn't throw the old saddle away, I found that if I cut a notch in the back end I could wedge it under the rear seat of my Apache 16 providing a kneeling saddle just behind the yoke where I normally kneel anyway.
    I trialled it on a 3-day Spey trip, and whilst I didn't want to be in the saddle all day I found it easy enough to transfer between the saddle and seat mid-river and push the saddle off to one side when on the seat. In fact I was probably using it off to one side.

    I really doubt you would regret buying the Aiguille saddle, justifying the price might be an issue but I'd be surprised if you didn't find it a useful and flexible option for tripping.

    Just a note, apart from being slightly wedged under the seat, my saddle was not fixed in the boat (it was tethered on a long rope in case I got fed up and wanted to put it behind the seat out of the way) - in C1 or OC1 this would be a problem as you depend on solid contact to control the boat, but in a trad boat where you normally manage without that connection (indeed moving around in it is generally necessary) this was not a problem, and probably a useful feature.

    How hard can it be?

  52. #52
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    Thank you, JimW, most helpful...….

  53. #53
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    Hi Laurence,
    I had the taller of the Aiguille saddles a few years back and didn't like it much and sold it after a short while. I much prefer the immediate versatility of a kneeling thwart as described by Big Al above. Even the taller Aiguille saddle was too low for me and I found myself sitting on the highest, rearmost section to alleviate the stress on my ankles and knees.
    However, it's different strokes for different folks and it may suit you, especially if you don't have any specific problems with your knees/shins/ankles. I found kneeling crippling when I first tried it, but your lower bits do acclimatise somewhat if you do it on a regular basis.
    If you're considering shelling out for one, I'd suggest cobbling together a cheapo mock up of one to see if it suits before parting with what is a fair amount of cash for what you're getting.
    One other thing I didn't like, was that's it's just another accoutrement to cart around and store, as opposed to a KT that is a permanent fixture in the boat, takes up little space and weighs less than a kilo.

    For reference. I'm a little shorter than you at 6' 2".
    Nin Wanakiwidee Tchiman

  54. #54
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    Hi Laurence,

    I've got one of the taller ones and love it. I've never had a kneeling thwart but would like one for harder white water as it can be difficult to shift your weight around with the saddle.

    I think we are vaguely in the same neck of the woods, if you fancy meeting up some time to try it out? I'm always looking for an excuse to paddle some of the Waveney.

    Robin
    The early bird may catch the worm... but the second mouse gets the cheese!

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by OLD MAN View Post
    Hi Laurence,
    I had the taller of the Aiguille saddles a few years back and didn't like it much and sold it after a short while. I much prefer the immediate versatility of a kneeling thwart as described by Big Al above. Even the taller Aiguille saddle was too low for me and I found myself sitting on the highest, rearmost section to alleviate the stress on my ankles and knees.
    However, it's different strokes for different folks and it may suit you, especially if you don't have any specific problems with your knees/shins/ankles. I found kneeling crippling when I first tried it, but your lower bits do acclimatise somewhat if you do it on a regular basis.
    If you're considering shelling out for one, I'd suggest cobbling together a cheapo mock up of one to see if it suits before parting with what is a fair amount of cash for what you're getting.
    One other thing I didn't like, was that's it's just another accoutrement to cart around and store, as opposed to a KT that is a permanent fixture in the boat, takes up little space and weighs less than a kilo.

    For reference. I'm a little shorter than you at 6' 2".
    Couple of good point there...will do as you suggest. I don't use a kneeling thwart, but use the seat as one?

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by broadsman View Post
    Hi Laurence,

    I've got one of the taller ones and love it. I've never had a kneeling thwart but would like one for harder white water as it can be difficult to shift your weight around with the saddle.

    I think we are vaguely in the same neck of the woods, if you fancy meeting up some time to try it out? I'm always looking for an excuse to paddle some of the Waveney.

    Robin
    Ha!Ha! Me too re the Waveney! In fact hoping for a few days there, perhaps? based at Outney Meadow in the summer?
    But I can be fairly flexible with any day paddle plans as am no longer employed, Yahay!

  57. #57
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    Make your own, I made the one below seven years ago.

    [IMG]DSCF1185_zps4912a397 [/IMG]

    It might look like an abomination but it has served me well and is only now just starting to fall apart (bit like its manufacturer) please note the drinks holder patent not pending
    Its very high, approximately gunnel height and needs to be because of my knees. I have used it in 9 different boats ….swum in most of them.....up to grade three. I've also made fixed versions of this for a couple of other boats.

    [IMG]brengineeringtoo[/IMG][IMG]brengineering[/IMG]
    One of the advantages of the fixed version over a kneeling thwart is there is less chance of leg entrapment in the event of a swim. I will concede you can't shift your weight so freely but its never been much of an issue
    Last edited by mayobren; 6th-January-2019 at 06:49 PM.
    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

  58. #58
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    …..…….and I have a bike saddle somewhere...………………..

  59. #59
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    Chris B. Funnily enough found the post identifying the system available for contributing members (of which I am one) since my above post, but since then time has been spent kick restarting my dinghy racing career, with the Icicle Series at Bough Beech. Judging by my performance today, more practice and/or wind is needed.

    A few things to do tomorrow, but I will try to load the photos of the Palm Saddle.

  60. #60
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    I have the large black stingray which i bought on here a while back. Used but never really got on with it. If anyones interested, would sell it for same as i paid for it 40 collected Rotherham.

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