I've decided to take out the seat in my QCC 400 and install a backband. I think I've narrowed it down to two. The Bomber Gear Wicked or the Snapdragon. Snapdragon makes two models. One with a ridged mounting band and one with a strap.
Anyone have an opinion on these?
Tried a Bomber
in my wife’s Artic Tern 14, but it was so wide that it hit her too low on the back and was not comfortable. I replaced it with a simple narrow (cheap) canoe back band from Bell and she loves it.
I like a solid plastic band
The snap dragon is ok but I like the ugly one I made myself for $2.50 best.
Four of our five sea kayaks have Bomber backbands.
The Elaho DS came from Necy with one, Tom Bergh fitted Celia’s Explorer LV with one before delivering the boat, and I’ve installed one in each my Romany and Aquanaut. I also installed one in my InaZone.
Although, I like them fine, I would not assert they are better than Snapdragon backbands, just that they work for me.
I replaced my NDK with a Snapdragon adjustable back band a couple years ago. I had decided to pick up the non-adjustable one but the rep talked me out of it (at Canoecopia). I wish I would have stuck with the other one because it can slip a bit.
I’m the only one who paddles my boat so adjustments aren’t necessary once it’s set up. I’m going to try a foam block just in the center (about 4" wide) instead of a backband. Seakayakingusa.com has one for NDK boats on their website in the accessories section.
I like the looks of the rigid Snapdragon, but I have concers that once the thing is mounted, there is no option to fine tune. If it’s not exactly where I want it, it’s either drill more holes or live with it. Is that the case?
I’m a little confused how the adjustable nylon-corded Snapdragon model mounts to the boat.
I assume the nylon straps attach to the seat side pillars, but what keeps the back band from rotating? Does it have shock cord that secures it to the rear combing?
an IR Reggie in my 700. It works great! Hang it as low as possible. It has the ratchet straps. It comes with the some additional straps that are attached but I trimmed them off after using it for a while because they weren’t needed. Hope this helps. I sit on the bare seat pan and it is supprisingly comfortable.
The Bomber Gear Wicked is stiffer and since Bomber Gear is out of business, I imagine it’s cheaper as well. The Snapdragon backband is softer and works well but it’s a bit too soft for my preference. I currently have a Wicked on my sea kayak but having used lots of backbands, my favorite is still the IR Reggie.
I’ll second the IR Reggie
Small and easy to place low, good solid structure, no slipping, no sling effect - just good low back support that’s there if/when needed and not when you don’t. More like an enhanced seat lip.
I used the extra web straps to hook under seat to keep it low and prevent it from following me out of the cockpit.
The Snapdragon with straps
I had one in my first sea kayak and liked it so much that after I sold that boat I put the same model backband in my wood boat.
The straps attach to the slotted cheek plates in my wood boat. The backband has some D-rings in back. I put a sturdy bunjie cord through those D-rings, with the bunjie running through another D-ring I made out of wood and epoxied to the inside of the rear coaming, under the lip.
In the commercially-manufactured kayak I had before, I vaguely remember the seller drilling some holes to retrofit the backband. If I remember correctly, the holes went immediately in back of the coaming lip, on the back deck; those were to attach a metal loop to secure the bunjies. I think the side straps were compatible with the stock seat sides. But you may have to study your cockpit and figure out for yourself where the best attachment points are.
I used an IR in my Q700
I agree with the others advice to mount it low, had trouble keeping it adjusted till I took a friends advice and turned it upside down, now it works fine.
have both Snap Dragon and Bomber
I have both Snap Dragon and Bomber skirts. Would recommend Snap Dragon.