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Thread: Ally 16.5' DR

  1. #1
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    Default Ally 16.5' DR

    Maker's Spec

    Length: 500 cm / 16' 5''
    Width: 95 cm / 37.5''
    Width gunwale: 92 cm / 36''
    Width waterline: 85 cm / 33.5''
    Depth: 36 cm / 14''
    Height bow: 47 cm / 18.5''
    Weight: 20 kg / 44 lbs
    Capacity: 380 kg / 835 lbs


    Maker's Write Up
    The canoe for those who need large volume combined with high stability on plain waters and in rivers. For years the 16.5í DR has been the no. 1 choice of expeditions all over the world. Suitable for 2-3 persons with gear or 2 adults and 2 children. ALLY 16.5ī DR has the same shape as 15í DR but a longer, less rockered keel line, which increases directional stability. This canoe has been paddled in heavy white water and on rivers with great technical difficulties with splendid success - making it the optimal choice under all conditions.

  2. #2

    Default Ally 16.5'

    Well, having lost storage by buying an apartment home we had to switch to a folder, join a club with storage or give up paddling. This Ally has worked out well. Reasonably stable at rest, quite stable when underway. It handles flat to rough water well - last weekend a two foot chop with 6 foot swells off the west coast of Canada. It flexes and sort of rides over a lot of the rough water and doesn't loose much forward momentum when being pounded straight on like our old canoe. We haven't tried any river white water yet but it handled well on fast flat water on the Fraser. We've been downwind sailing it and that works well too. The more gear you load in to it, the more it likes it - and it holds a lot. Amazingly you can cartop it (we put 5 inch wide foam strips cut from that blue camping sleeping foam stuff) under the straps we put over the hull and then tie the bow and stern down. This is best up to 50mph/80k but for short bursts we have been up to 90 and 100 k. The boat is stable but our worries about rubbing on the fabric generally make us slow down. We put it away in a couple of duffle bags and leave it in a closet. We have managed to get on busses and trains and board ferries as walking passengers with it, which is a nice bonus. We need 30 to 45 minutes to put it together - depending on how much extra gear we are loading in to it or installing on it. It comes down in about 10. We made our own V sail and are working on a proper sail with a lee board arrangement - a bit of a tricky design problem with a folder! It has just enough flotation built in but that isn't enough for us so we squashed a bunch of foam chips into a nylon bag, wrapped it in a basketball net and clip it in the bow. This works surprisingly well so we plan to make another for the stern.

  3. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by harbilly View Post
    Well, having lost storage by buying an apartment home we had to switch to a folder, join a club with storage or give up paddling. This Ally has worked out well. Reasonably stable at rest, quite stable when underway. It handles flat to rough water well - last weekend a two foot chop with 6 foot swells off the west coast of Canada. It flexes and sort of rides over a lot of the rough water and doesn't loose much forward momentum when being pounded straight on like our old canoe. We haven't tried any river white water yet but it handled well on fast flat water on the Fraser. We've been downwind sailing it and that works well too. The more gear you load in to it, the more it likes it - and it holds a lot. Amazingly you can cartop it (we put 5 inch wide foam strips cut from that blue camping sleeping foam stuff) under the straps we put over the hull and then tie the bow and stern down. This is best up to 50mph/80k but for short bursts we have been up to 90 and 100 k. The boat is stable but our worries about rubbing on the fabric generally make us slow down. We put it away in a couple of duffle bags and leave it in a closet. We have managed to get on busses and trains and board ferries as walking passengers with it, which is a nice bonus. We need 30 to 45 minutes to put it together - depending on how much extra gear we are loading in to it or installing on it. It comes down in about 10. We made our own V sail and are working on a proper sail with a lee board arrangement - a bit of a tricky design problem with a folder! It has just enough flotation built in but that isn't enough for us so we squashed a bunch of foam chips into a nylon bag, wrapped it in a basketball net and clip it in the bow. This works surprisingly well so we plan to make another for the stern.
    Hi guys, Im a newbie. Nice to join this forum.

  4. #4

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    Hi, I would like one of these, does anyone know where they are available from, Scottish Paddler Supplies do not respond to my mails.

  5. #5
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    Default SPS etc

    I think that Scottish Paddler Supplies is no longer, but I'm sure someone else will confirm. Given that, I don't think there is a retailer of Ally boats in the UK anymore.

    For folding boats, you could try http://www.knoydart.co.uk/, who sell Nautiraid boats, or Ed Bassett, who sells Pakcanoes, and posts on this forum, and I can vouch for pretty good service from him.

    Look at the reviews of Nautiraid and Pakcanoes to see what folks think.
    Damien

  6. #6
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    Default

    There a dutch dealer. I am coming to the uk end of feb, Perhaps I can help.

  7. #7

    Default

    Thanks Yellow Pryanha, I will follow those links up

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lennart View Post
    There a dutch dealer. I am coming to the uk end of feb, Perhaps I can help.
    Hi Lennart, yes I could be interested, do you have a web site for your dealership?

  9. #9
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    Hi all
    I've just had an e-mail from Tamarack (just a customer no other links) they are adding Ally canoes to their range and are expecting stock in the next seven days - I think theres a sotp discount too.
    http://www.tamarackgroup.co.uk/acatalog/Ally_Canoe.html
    hope this helps those who are looking for one.
    Neil

  10. Default

    Yes they have them in now

  11. #11

    Default Import - dealer network

    Even when I got mine I had to have a Canadian retailer specially order it from the US distributor and they dealt with the customs people. I couldn't find one handy to my location.
    It was worth it, though.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by harbilly View Post
    ... We made our own V sail and are working on a proper sail with a lee board arrangement - a bit of a tricky design problem with a folder! ...
    How have you come along?
    Having bought a 16,5' DR as our family boat yesterday, after a long search with a lot of trying, this interests me a lot!
    We concluded on an Ally folder because it matches up with the use of our Rapido folding caravan and for the (811) 16,5' DR rather than the (815) 17' DR ("flat water") because our daughters very much liked the stability.
    (it just might sail better too)

  13. Default

    Congratulations!
    We finished the lateen sail project with the great success as regards the leeboard, sail, mast mounting and rigging. We used a lot of dense camping foam to protect the boat. We did not do as well with the mast material. Scrounged aluminum tent poles didn't cut it. We haven't returned to the project to try steel or wood, been just too busy.

  14. #14
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    Thumbs up

    Would an aluminium poling tube be a solution? Like the one Endless River sells?
    They supply theirs as part of a sailing kit also, so I would suspect it's rugged enough.
    Although you might also want a bit bigger sail, I am not quit sure how big theirs is.

    If you can find the time to add some images or sketches of your leeboard, mast step and rudder construction, I would appreciate it highly.

  15. Default

    Yes it might. I will look to see if I can post pics. The mast step: think of a step pyramid of wood with lashing holes bored all around and heavy foam on the bottom. The lee board I did in oak, likewise the brace board it mounted to. I'm afraid I never got to a rudder as I used my paddle instead. If I can take some pics tomorrow I will put them on the web and place the link here.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by harbilly View Post
    ... I will look to see if I can post pics. The mast step: think of a step pyramid of wood with lashing holes bored all around and heavy foam on the bottom. The lee board I did in oak, likewise the brace board it mounted to. I'm afraid I never got to a rudder as I used my paddle instead. If I can take some pics tomorrow I will put them on the web and place the link here.
    That would be great! I am looking forward to seeing those!

  17. Default

    Great. Am out of town for a bit. Glanced at the boat closet on the way out the door and saw what I need to photograph so I should get it done next week! Although, I am notoriously forgetful!

  18. #18
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    Default



    I am in no hurry. In the meantime I did do some cross posting to the Yahoo sailing canoe group, so there might be some more people monitoring this thread now.

  19. #19

    Default Sail rig

    Quote Originally Posted by harbilly View Post
    Yes it might. I will look to see if I can post pics. The mast step: think of a step pyramid of wood with lashing holes bored all around and heavy foam on the bottom. The lee board I did in oak, likewise the brace board it mounted to. I'm afraid I never got to a rudder as I used my paddle instead. If I can take some pics tomorrow I will put them on the web and place the link here.

    I've got a mast-step and a clamp on sailing thwart wot I built for the 13'7.

    Only used with a pole mast downwind sail so far.

    Still working on rudder, leeboard and, probably, some stabilisers! AND making the rig swap from the 13'7" to the 16'6".

    Then I need to work on getting the weight of the attachments lower - my first effort may be a trifle over-engineered...

    Jim.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by harbilly View Post
    Great. Am out of town for a bit. Glanced at the boat closet on the way out the door and saw what I need to photograph so I should get it done next week! Although, I am notoriously forgetful!
    May I kindly remind you?
    To be honest I'm not just a bit curious, I am *very* curious about your setup and can hardly wait.

    Regards,
    Jaap

  21. #21
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    Ok, this thread is quite old, but were photos ever posted of the sailing set up? Perhaps elsewhere? I'd be very interested, as might others.
    Ian

  22. #22
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    Does anybody have information about the amount of rocker this canoe has?
    We are playing with the idea of buying a folder. The idea even came from my other half who suggested we should look into buying one as she sees advantages over our current fleet of canoes in ways of weight and ease of transport (no loud bulky canoe on top of the car). (also suggesting I get rid of one or two canoes I never use anyway...)

    We currently have a Swift Dumoine 164, which has considerate rocker, is great as an allround river cruiser, but is hard to handle in windy conditions.

    My first choice for a folder would be one that has a straighter keel line to enhance tracking, like the Ally 17 or a pakcanoe 165/170. The Ally 16.5 is easier to get my hands on in the second hand market though...

    Can anybody compare tracking of an Ally 16.5 DR with for instance a Swift Dumoine 164 or any Prospector in the same length range?

    Thanks.
    Enjoy your body,
    use it every way you can.
    donít be afraid of it,
    or what other people think of it,
    itís the greatest instrument youíll ever own.

  23. #23
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    Hi Digger, we have the Ally 15DR and it seems to track pretty well when we get the paddle technique correct two up, with me solo it tracks well unless it gets windy with little weight in the bow.
    I have just looked through the manual I got with it and there is no information on rocker, however, we are out for a paddle tomorrow so can measure the rocker on ours if that is of any help.

    Rob.

  24. #24
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    Hi Rob, the manufacturer says: "ALLY 16.5ī DR has the same shape as 15’ DR but a longer, less rockered keel line, which increases directional stability". You can do the measurement, but I think the results will be of much use if you have a 15DR.

    They probably don't want to give any values for the rocker because loading the canoe will have influence on the rocker. They'll want to avoid complaints..

    Thanks for the offer though.
    Enjoy your body,
    use it every way you can.
    donít be afraid of it,
    or what other people think of it,
    itís the greatest instrument youíll ever own.

  25. #25
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    Tandem it is ok (Liewe and myself paddled my 16.5 DR on the Sunday at the 4th Dutch SotP meet among the flower fields with winds up to the upper regions of 4 Bft)
    Soloing I am still frequently blown all over the place, partly because the natural flex of the Ally causes the rocker to increase to the point where the waterline lenght, even when levelled, approaches 2m.

    But you are welcome to try yourself, just drop in on one of the 3-weekly paddle meets on Lennart's doorstep.

  26. #26
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    You are most welcome Digger, hope you find what you need..JotM's offer sounds like the way to go though, see it, play with it then say what the hey! and buy one
    Rob

  27. #27
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    pm sent

  28. #28
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    Due to "other priorities" we still haven't bought any boat yet.
    But I do have another question: Because of the flex these canoes are said to have a dry ride, but is it enough to compensate for the lack of flare? From the shape of the bow (and stern) I get the impression that if this canoe would hit a wave (or a stopper at the bottom of a chute) it would just go through it and there's no flare to keep the water out.

    How does this canoe handle waves compared to any Prospector? Would this be a valid comparison?

    I wouldn't mind using a spray deck to keep the water out, but my partner has a different opinion on that subject.
    Enjoy your body,
    use it every way you can.
    donít be afraid of it,
    or what other people think of it,
    itís the greatest instrument youíll ever own.

  29. #29
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    Hi Digger, we have taken our Ally down some of the canoe passes on the Medway, some tandem, and had little to no water over the bow.
    Have you seen any of the Lars Monsen video's on youtube? He puts them through some tough treatment.
    Philosophist and Scoutmaster have done a lot of Ally trips, maybe a PM to them may be of help.
    Rob.

  30. #30

    Default behaviour of the Ally 16.5'DR in waves

    Quote Originally Posted by Digger View Post
    Because of the flex these canoes are said to have a dry ride, but is it enough to compensate for the lack of flare? From the shape of the bow (and stern) I get the impression that if this canoe would hit a wave (or a stopper at the bottom of a chute) it would just go through it and there's no flare to keep the water out.
    How does this canoe handle waves compared to any Prospector? Would this be a valid comparison?
    I wouldn't mind using a spray deck to keep the water out, but my partner has a different opinion on that subject.
    I have two examples to show the behaviour of the Ally 16.5'DR in waves.

  31. #31

    Default behaviour of the Ally 16.5'DR in waves

    The first it is open, without any baggage, and a 45 kg bow paddler: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vaJQ6hra80U
    The second it is closed, with heavy baggage, and a 80 kg bow paddler: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MiC38oxhks#t=4m40s

    The second video also shows the variable rocker ;-)

    Regards,
    Michael
    Last edited by Spartaner; 9th-January-2013 at 05:49 AM.

  32. #32

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JotM View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by harbilly View Post
    Great. Am out of town for a bit. Glanced at the boat closet on the way out the door and saw what I need to photograph so I should get it done next week! Although, I am notoriously forgetful!

    May I kindly remind you?
    To be honest I'm not just a bit curious, I am *very* curious about your setup and can hardly wait.
    Me toooo!

    See my own solution here: http://www.canadierforum.de/t4633f4-...tml#msg9981330
    It works quit well, except for the rudder. Even against the wind: http://goo.gl/maps/07CdT (Test)
    Sail on trip: http://www.canadierforum.de/t7002f19...September.html


    Regards,
    Michael

  33. #33
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    Default

    There's even youtube footage showing the boat under sail and making reasonable progress (judging from the waves) upwind

  34. #34
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    Default Paddle size choice for Ally 16.5

    Hello,

    folk give my an idea of what paddle lengths work with the Ally 16.5
    I have to get paddles without trying first I'm afraid.
    Some examples of your "size"/height and the paddle size you use would be great, and any other comments on this choice.

    cheers
    Jonathan

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan Barnaby View Post
    Hello,

    folk give my an idea of what paddle lengths work with the Ally 16.5
    I have to get paddles without trying first I'm afraid.
    Some examples of your "size"/height and the paddle size you use would be great, and any other comments on this choice.

    cheers
    Jonathan
    Hi Jonathan and welcome to SOTP.

    Paddle length choice is really based on the length of the shaft to blade shoulder as some blade designs are shorter than others.
    A rule of thumb is to kneel on one knee, hold your arm out at shoulder height and measure the distance to the floor.
    The Ally paddles as any other non inflatable canoe, paddle lengths are determined by the user and blade design by the type of water you want to paddle, I made the ones in my avatar and use them for everything...I know I can fix 'em if I break 'em
    Hope this helps if not try searching paddle lengths in the search engine, I think the question may have popped up a few times.
    Happy paddling.
    Rob.

    This video might be helpful, paddle length comes towards the end of the vid.

    Last edited by Rob-GB; 19th-February-2014 at 10:47 AM. Reason: to add vid

  36. #36
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    Cheers Rob, I wasn't sure if an Ally would be just the same criteria as a rigid canoe. Useful video. Thanks again

  37. #37
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    Anyone paddle these solo - if so how does it work as I'm used to a paddling solo with kneeling thwart and the boat heeled and can see the Ally seat parked in the middle of the boat being pretty useless for this.

    Cheers

    Ade

  38. Default

    (For me) It is awful solo.
    I have been in and out of town so much the last 5 years I haven't been out paddling. We are icing to our ranch now so I hope, by summer, to have the time to get in the water. But I hated paddling the Ally alone.
    Quote Originally Posted by Davy 90 View Post
    Anyone paddle these solo - if so how does it work as I'm used to a paddling solo with kneeling thwart and the boat heeled and can see the Ally seat parked in the middle of the boat being pretty useless for this.

    Cheers

    Ade

  39. #39
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    Was hoping to point you in the direction of Lars Monsen, but he always seems to have loads of kit plus sled dog!
    Have a peep anyway.


    Rob.

    PS: I take no responsibility if you end up watching all the videos

  40. #40
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    Thanks Rob.

    Looks like he paddles it from the rear seat.

    I've seen a couple of his movies before, good stuff

  41. #41
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    I've seen Pakcanoe's soloed. this image would suggest lots of seat positioning options;

    Covering as many malmiles as possible before being distracted by the pub!

    Paddle Points - where to paddle

  42. #42
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    I was happy soloing my ally. I simply knelt in the middle. I think it handles nicely once built. (It is the building it that I find a bit of a pain.) And for portaging it is an utter pleasure compared to my fibreglass apache. Very light indeed.
    Ian

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davy 90 View Post
    Anyone paddle these solo - if so how does it work as I'm used to a paddling solo with kneeling thwart and the boat heeled and can see the Ally seat parked in the middle of the boat being pretty useless for this.
    We've got Pakcanoes, not allys, but I thought I'd stop by, in case it helps. We've started padding ours solo a little and its been working out for us, though we'd prefer a shorter boat.

    The tractor/riser based seats are very movable, allowing them to be placed where you want them to an extent. The pakcanoe bench seat option gives me something like a kneeling thwart, but the positions are more limited in the standard build - you'ld need to get some additional plastic doo-dars to have more options. But we've found sitting in the front seat in reverse like a standard disco works for us if we stick a bag or two at the front.

    At the OCA weekend a far better paddler than I tried out the pakcanoe and was impressed with its solo handling - he just knelt in the middle and heeled it over.

    Hope this helps. Obviously I'd find somewhere or someone who has an ally and check the seats give you options.

    HTH

    Dan

  44. #44
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    Another Pakcanoe user, here, but I have non issues paddling our 16' boat solo, kneeling in front of the wider seat (difficult to know whether to call it front or rear since which it is depends on which way the boat is travelling). I am planning to get an Aiguille Stingray saddle (http://www.aiguillealpine.co.uk/cgi-...showprod_STRAY) to see if that makes it even nicer.

    Edit: on our Pakcanoe, there is a thwart across the widest part which may feel a bit close - I don't know if the Ally has the same, but it's wortrh checking where the thwarts would be compared to where you want to sit. I think the shorter Pakcanoes, which are aimed more at solo paddlers have thwarts on ribs fore and aft of centre, leaving the centre clear for the paddler.
    Last edited by Yellow Pyranha; 9th-May-2014 at 12:02 PM. Reason: additional thought
    Damien

  45. #45
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    Kneeling in the canoe and heeling an Ally is not a problem. With the materials used it would even be more comfortable than any rigid canoe, as long as you don't kneel on any of the hard parts.

    Creating something like a kneeling thwart will be hard if you don't want to make modifications because there's nothing to really attach such a thwart to at the height where you would expect a kneeling thwart to be.

    One thing you could do is buy an extra middle rib (the one with the top bar) and then remove the bar to replace it with something you can use as kneeling thwart (and at the right height). The original bar would be too high (and not strong enough) to use as a kneeling thwart, but the replacement must be strong enough to maintain the shape of the canoe.
    Enjoy your body,
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    donít be afraid of it,
    or what other people think of it,
    itís the greatest instrument youíll ever own.

  46. #46
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    There's also this if you want to put a seat in the middle of the canoe. A kneeling thwart would be better I think because sitting in the middle of a wide boat would make the paddling more difficult than paddling it kneeling and heeling.
    Enjoy your body,
    use it every way you can.
    donít be afraid of it,
    or what other people think of it,
    itís the greatest instrument youíll ever own.

  47. #47
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    Thanks for the responses.

    I'm hoping to use the boat initially in easy grade II WW with a load solo, by the sound of things I'll need to improvise something to assist with kneeling - I've not done much paddling kneeling in the middle of a canoe without a thwart/seat and when I did try it I found the lack of connection to the boat felt very odd - although having said that, I do move about a lot in my P15 on WW so probably spend a fair bit of time with little weight actually going through the kneeling thwart, more a case of hooking my calves underneath when thrashing about in more complex water..... perhaps more a case of getting to grips (literally) with a new situation than a problem.

    The ability to knee walk across a wide prospector type hull for off side/cross deck strokes is important which I can imagine being less than straightforward with a stingray type saddle..

    I might try paddling my P15 backwards straddling a dry bag as an improvised saddle to see how it works...

    Cheers.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davy 90 View Post
    I do move about a lot in my P15 ...

    That would be a painful experience in an Ally...
    Unless you manage to keep your knees on the soft parts of the hull.

    Last winter we practiced climbing back into a swamped boat and especially the clips that keep the bottom rods in place now make me do everything possible to make sure we don't have to climb back in deep water.
    Enjoy your body,
    use it every way you can.
    donít be afraid of it,
    or what other people think of it,
    itís the greatest instrument youíll ever own.

  49. #49
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    If you are paddling boney welsh river or similar consider knee pads. Hard urban skater kneepads is what I would recommend not a bit of neoprene.

    Only when you have your knee bounced onto a rock through a soft-bottomed boat on a rapid will you truly know pain.

    That or childbirth i suppose.

  50. #50

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    Have been out of the SOTP scene for a while but in the meantime I bought a 16.5 dr and love it. Have paddled mostly with kids up front and find it easier into wind than my heavier wooden canoe.
    On the subject of kneeling in/ near the middle I am going to experiment with making a plate made up from a foam pad with thicker strips of closed cell foam where there are gaps between the hard bits. (May use a thin bit of ply for extra protection but am keen not to add weight or risk of edges causing damage) I find the seats are bit limiting in how far up the canoe you can set them as the tubes are a bit short.
    Dodgy knee has much improved from kneeling in a rigid through the club though
    Have been doing my 3 star and begun to explore grade 2 water in a rigid but before I venture out in my Ally I would like a bit more between me and a big rock!
    Thanks to "Mainstream" for a great training weekend. Much more confident in my paddling and have been every week since.

  51. #51
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    601

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    Six millimetre thick ply weighs little and if you round off the corners and edges then wrap in a closed cell padding it will both protect you and the skin of the Ally considerably.
    (coarse sandpaper wrapped around a block of wood will quickly perform the rounding off job so no costly tooling required)

    Rob.

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    I tried the foam version on Monday and will post a couple of photos when I get the time. Reasonably comfortable but as I had no weight up front found the canoe very easily affected by the wind. Had to apply heads up and good paddle technique to maintain a straight line but it went well

    Thanks for the suggestion Rob. I think that will be the next version and should give more control from body movement and that extra protection. Having another go on Saturday

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