canoe seat comfort

I don’t canoe a lot, but when I do it is on trips that require alot of seat time. I can’t be the only person that isn’t really fond of the usual web seat, but at the same time I can’t find tractor style seats to replace them. Am I missing them on the web somewhere? I am assuming I would like them because it is like the seat pan of my kayak. I guess I would be willing to try the more ergonomic style web seat but I think the tractor style would be best. Any suggestions would be great.

I have a wenonah sundowner 17.

Ryan L.

Interesting. Many people ditch tractor
seats because they find them uncomfortable. I found them fine when a thin layer of breathable cushioning was added.

As for web seats, I assume you mean those with woven strapping. The comfort issue for me is that I’m big, my pelvis is big, and the rectangular aperture on most web seats is too small. It bites me in my avoirdupois.

Golden Corral
Carry your own padding.

I love the tractor style seat
After you get it, get some of the special ribbed padding that J & J canoes carries and put one layer on and then a second one with cuts outs for your cheeks, and you can paddle all day long in ultimate comfort.

I have outfitted our Jensen 17, our comp cruiser, our Susquehanna and our two J boats this way.

I also have plain old hard plastic tractor style seats in our Old Town Disco and they seem fine also.

Jack L

How about both at the same time

Tractor Seat
I think Hemlock Canoes sells a padded tractor style seat that appears to mounted on a standard ash frame. On their website, click on photo album and then the 1st set of pictures…construction, options…etc.

i am the same way
I am a larger guy myself, not fat, just big. So I am not wider than the seat but I am longer, if that makes since. I can paddle on those plastic buckets in an old town for days, but in my sundowner the small seat leads to dead legs and sore back in a few hours. I’m sure foot braces would help but I really just don’t want to deal with that.

Ryan L.

Wenonah dealers
you mention having a Sundowner. Any Wenonah dealer can get you the tractor seats for it, both fixed and sliding.

Add the footbrace. It really helps. the new style is very easy to adjust. The installation takes under 15 minutes. It takes longer to measure and make the marks than to drill and rivet.



– Last Updated: Jun-02-11 5:00 PM EST –

I had Edscanoe make me a longer version of their bucket seat to mount in my rapidfire. I use a piece of closed cell foam and a Skwoosh pad to add even more comfort. I spent 10 hours in it today.

I had a Sundowner
I took out the bench seats and put in buckets from Mohawk canoe. When I sold the Sundowner I kept the buckets and used them in Canunuts SCR wood stripper. Much prefered the tractor seats for paddling.

Mohawk is down the way from me. I’ll try that if not ill just call wenonah I figure.

Ryan L.

Another option…
for padding is a small Thermorest self-inflating cushion. You can adjust the inflation to suit yourself–I find that less inflation is more comfortable for me, but I’m a fairly small person. With the right amount of inflation they will “mold” to the tractor style seat shape.

You can also get tractor style shaped cane seats from Piragis Northwoods.

Canoe seat
The best thing i have found to help ease the pain of a canoe seat is to buy a GCI Outdoor stadium seat to clip on. It has a foam pad to sit on and provides a seat back to save your back. You can get them pretty cheap at Dick’s sporting goods.

blue foam
We bought a cheap foam sleeping pad at wally world and glued it to the seats. Works great and is cheap.

Just switched 2 sets of tractor seats,
and went to contour and regular cane seats.

I have found the cane contour with the cane back rest to be the ideal combo of comfort. I am switching out another set of tractor seats for cherry contour cane seats.

I like the lower center of gravity with the cane contour seat, and the built-in control and stability from the contour. It is a natural non-slip seat.

Most tractor seats are big dishes with an edge, and slipping within it can be bad news. Added padding helps, as others have said, but then the center of gravity may go up. So, I have had it with tractor seats, but will keep them for if and when another owner has different preferences.

Good luck!

change positions
my touring canoes have web seats, slight tilt.I kneel some, sit some, stand some…

Zaceral Racing Equipment
ZRE has two different styles of carbon fiber tractor seats for about $65.00

Go to Wal Mart and buy a cheap “Golds Gym” yoga pad in their exercise department, cut to fit and pad your seat.

You don’t want your seat real soft, or your pelvis will tilt and you will get back pain. Just enough to avoid pressure.I have a tractor style seat in my boat with an inch of padding and it’s perfect.

Wenonah also does sell the ready made seats, and they have seat pads as well. Probably less labor intensive than the ZRE one.

ww pedestal glued to floor-foam works

– Last Updated: Jun-04-11 6:21 PM EST –

FWIW...I've really only used the manufactured seat for sliding up on to catch a few winks in the last ~15yrs. After I tried using a foam ww pedestal, shaven to fit, glued to a floor-layer of foam..which you then fit the rear part tightly under seat=solid......I never gave the cane, webbing, or seat/gel-pad another 5 minutes...fwiw. So easy to also fit and glue your ankleblocks where you want so everything is glued to floor-foam rug = simple to transport and carry...of course you do have to lean and stretch a bit if you're into moving around the cockpit.


I’d like to see how you did it.

As chethro pointed out,
Eds Canoe will make you just about anything (within reason) that you want. I had them make me a wide “Contour” seat with the fore/aft bolt hole measurement doubled from the standard 8" to 16". I then webbed it myself. Very comfy! And no need for a foam pad.