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Thread: Robens Pathfinder Chair Sinking

  1. #1
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    Default Robens Pathfinder Chair Sinking

    I have a Roben's Pathfinder chair which I really like but it suffers from the same problem as other chairs of its design... it sinks in mud/sand/snow.

    This is the model:

    https://www.cotswoldoutdoor.com/p/ro...tml?colour=122

    Does anyone know if any of the Helinox/other "insert brand here" "groundsheets" work with the Pathfinder? None of the websites seem to give any measurements for where the chair legs sit (sink!) on the ground.

    On the pathfinder the distance between the back legs is 14", the distance between the front legs is 13.5" and the distance between the front and back legs is 11"

    This is the type of things I am referring to:

    https://www.twistmoto.co.uk/chairs/4...8aAmrAEALw_wcB

    I know I could get some golf balls or similar and drill them out and I might well end up doing that but if anyone knows whether a groundsheet would fit (or indeed has a Helinox/other brand model that they would be willing to measure I would be grateful).

  2. #2
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    Make two wooden slats about 3 inches wide and longer than the spread of the chair legs. Make hollows for the legs to fit into and put your chair legs on the slats. Your body weight will keep the legs in the hollows, but the increased ground area will not allow the chair to sink, or to puncture your ground sheet. As the slats are not connected to the chair there is no problem about folding them away.
    Calefactio orbis? Culus meus!!

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    If the groundsheet thing doesn't work put. Instead of golf balls, get lathe control knobs and enlarge the holes to suit. Search for "ball knob" on online auction sites. The larger the diameter, the less sinky. Had them on my knock-off Chinese helinox for 3 years now.

    I have also seen people drill two holes in a length of blue alkathene water pipe to make anti-sink "sledge runners". One each side. I tried them, they work but I got fed up having to keep put them back in place every time I got up.
    "I'm not getting in a boat which is DESIGNED to go upside down."

  4. #4
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    Ive read posts in the past suggesting old tennis balls work well for this

  5. #5
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    The groundsheets for GoOutdoors copy don't fit the narrower Helinox, and I suspect this will generally be the case, especially with the offset legs on your Pathfinder.

    I'm told squash balls are the best compromise on anti-sinkyness v bulk.

  6. #6
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    I've heard that an X shape made from two lengths of car seat belt type webbing works well - make a pocket at the ends for the legs. I haven't tried it yet - the only possible issue I can see is that the webbing will go under some tension in use which will try to draw the chair legs together.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_B View Post
    I've heard that an X shape made from two lengths of car seat belt type webbing works well - make a pocket at the ends for the legs. I haven't tried it yet - the only possible issue I can see is that the webbing will go under some tension in use which will try to draw the chair legs together.
    Bootstrap Bob made some straps like this, though not to cross, just one for each side. Worked well, I was given a prototype. Eventually, due to it being a quickly made test set, the stitching forming the "pockets" gave and me being rubbish, I've never repaired them. Rob still uses the ones he made for his crew though.

    I've just learnt to ride the Helinox chair carefully, so I sink at an even rate. And it always provides entertainment for everyone else when the rate for one leg suddenly increases, and I get to have a lie down.

  8. #8
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    I use tennis balls on mine .
    So we beat on,boats against the current,bourne back ceaselessly into the past.

  9. #9
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    Thanks all. I've found the tennis balls just get pierced by the legs so I end up sunk into the ground with tennis balls half way up the legs!

  10. #10
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    typed this morning and sure i pressed post.
    I have a very similar chair which was to hand. its the OEX brand , i got it from GO on price reduction, have measured the ground sheet and found the distance between the two sets of legs is 11" the rear legs are 15" max, end of pocket to end of pocket and the front legs are 14.5" max end of pocket end of pocket. the pockets are over an inch in length. they may be quite similar. 22 for the mat is a bit pricey mind.

  11. #11
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    Great ideas everyone and Thank you Lee for measuring yours - it sounds like it would work with the pathfinder... 22 does seem a bit steep though!

  12. #12
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    The advantage of the lathe knobs is you can leave them on and the whole lot still fits in the bag. In fact, they are best glued on so they don't get left in the ground if you sink into very soft stuff.

    "I'm not getting in a boat which is DESIGNED to go upside down."

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lime View Post
    I have a Roben's Pathfinder chair which I really like but it suffers from the same problem as other chairs of its design... it sinks in mud/sand/snow.

    This is the model:

    https://www.cotswoldoutdoor.com/p/ro...tml?colour=122

    Does anyone know if any of the Helinox/other "insert brand here" "groundsheets" work with the Pathfinder? None of the websites seem to give any measurements for where the chair legs sit (sink!) on the ground.

    On the pathfinder the distance between the back legs is 14", the distance between the front legs is 13.5" and the distance between the front and back legs is 11"

    This is the type of things I am referring to:

    https://www.twistmoto.co.uk/chairs/4...8aAmrAEALw_wcB

    I know I could get some golf balls or similar and drill them out and I might well end up doing that but if anyone knows whether a groundsheet would fit (or indeed has a Helinox/other brand model that they would be willing to measure I would be grateful).
    I've got 2 of these chairs, they're really comfortable - but as you say, they do sink in soft ground....

    The mod I did:
    buy a length of 42mm black plastic waste pipe from B&Q (other diy shops are available) About 1-2 ish.
    cut 2 lengths that are just a bit longer than the span of the feet (you need one for the left and one for the right).
    cut holes in the top of the pipe so the chair feet slot into the pipe. (this is the difficult part. I used a drill with a saw bit.)

    Hope the description makes sense. I can possibly take some photo's if necessary.

    The chair is then very stable and can be used on pretty much any terrain. The 2 pipes also fit into the Robens bag with the chair. We fit the pipes every time we use the chairs.

    Good luck,
    Ian

  14. #14
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    I got the "Observer" version and thought I'd solved the problem in this thread.

    Here is a photo of the "Dog's Balls" solution.



    However, on a camping trip recently, one of the dog's balls ended up getting pierced. So I reverted to Golf Balls, which so far have proved very successful.





    Just be aware that there are two different types of golf ball. One has a rather squishy center that ouses and ouses out all over the place. The other is hard and okay.
    Guess how I found out?
    Big Al.

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    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
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    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

  16. #16
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    I have the non-deluxe versions of these feet Mr mayobren

    I tried to use them with my Helinox chair without success

    They are made up of two parts and they just detach and slide up the legs of the chair

    I have glued them together with some epoxy so will have to test if that has solved the problem

  17. #17

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    Squash balls have worked for me for the last four or five years and with a little bit of a fiddle, the chair goes back in it's original bag.

  18. #18
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    One of the reasons we buy these chairs is that they pack away small and light. Adding lengths of pipe and other bulky items seems to defeat the purpose. The webbing straps sounded like the best bet for maintaining the facility.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmac View Post
    I have the non-deluxe versions of these feet Mr mayobren

    I tried to use them with my Helinox chair without success

    They are made up of two parts and they just detach and slide up the legs of the chair

    I have glued them together with some epoxy so will have to test if that has solved the problem
    Ah handy to know I've just bought some lol
    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

  20. #20

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    I love the internet! This is like an ultimate 1st World problem isn't it?

    Basically the issue at hand is that a 50 fold up chair sinks a bit if it's quite wet. The solution appears to be to buy a 25 piece of fabric to spread the load So a 75 outlay when the majority of the rest of the world would sit on either the floor or a log.

    I know I have had a couple of pints this evening and can sometimes get strangely philosophical, but we really did lose our way at some point didn't we?

  21. #21
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    Well no , my chair was 16 and the tennis balls I fished out of the river. Also as I make things I am making a mat for mine.
    So we beat on,boats against the current,bourne back ceaselessly into the past.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maggot View Post
    Basically the issue at hand is that a 50 fold up chair sinks a bit if it's quite wet. The solution appears to be to buy a 25 piece of fabric to spread the load So a 75 outlay when the majority of the rest of the world would sit on either the floor or a log.
    Good point ....well made.........using an expensive electronic device........perhaps semaphore would be more apt...................fancy discussing gear on the gear thread of a forum...........................whatever next .........people arranging paddles on the meets thread
    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

  23. #23
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    Yeah, but a well bred-horse will be expensive, and quite temperamental. These chairs are the same, highly bred, but you need to be well trained and experienced to ride them.


    As said, any "adaptation" needs to be small enough to pop into the bag. To be honest, I've had mine 5 years or so now, use it 2-3 times a week, and don't worry about adding anything anymore. Sometimes camp spots are a bit damp, leading to entertainment for my fellow campers, but normally its fine with a bit of care and a cautious approach to touch down!

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