Followup - Kneeling Wenonah seat

First thanks you all for the good suggestions.

I did a little experimenting over the last couple of days and thought you might be interested in the results.

  1. A lot of what I thought was loss of stability when I went to the kneeling position was acutally a gain in the ability to edge (under control) rather than loss of stability. When sitting it took a real effort to shift enough weight to heel the canoe. Once on my knees with them spread out even a little weight shift would start a nice heel. On my knees I was much more stable when heeled over and I could heel farther over comfortable than when sitting. Even when kneeling if I sat back far enough I could take most of the weight off the knees and make the canoe react almost the same as when seated.

  2. Toes straight down took all the pressure off my ankles, but I think I need stiffer toed shoes to sit comfortably that way for a long time. I was in aqua-sock type shoes that flexed a lot and put pressure on my toes.

  3. Toes back but turned out to the side (instep up into chine) allowed for the longest paddling time. I did not cramp up but about 30 min was as long as I went before a need to quit.

  4. Putting a seat pad on the web seat really made the most difference. It was what let me do that 30 min stretch. I used a crazy creek type chair with the back folded down so that I had the thickness of both the back and seat to rest on.

  5. I am beginning to think that the most important idea in getting a seat adjusted for kneeling is getting the right balance between weight on the knees and weight on the seat. Too high and all your weight is on the knees so that any little weight shift causes rocking and you have less stability due to your increased height. Too low and you put more pressure on your feet (comfort issue) and if you take enought weight off the knees it becomes difficult to heel the canoe.

    Thanks again for all the help.


Thoughtful analysis. Hope you get
comfortable soon.

This thread is interesting, although I don’t know what came before it – obviously, the poster has posed a question on this topic in a previous thread.

But he or she is covering some of the same ground as is addressed in my own thread, recently initiated: “Leaning a canoe – how?”

One of my Wenonahs, a Prism, has a bucket set. Wish I had ordered a web seat, like my others. I don’t know how you would go about kneeling in my Prism (and the Wenonah catalog suggests you can’t). If somebody knows how, I’d be most happy to hear about it.

Depends on what is under the bucket
seat, by way of a supportive framework. Our '73 Moore came with bucket seats, supported by aluminum tubing running from one side of the hull to the other, and we found it quite easy to kneel on the edges of the seats.

Not hopeful
The seat is mounted on fore-and-aft double rails so you can slide it to adjust the trim. I suppose if you moved the seat all the way towards the bow you could kneel against it. I haven’t tried that.

kneeling in a Prism
You just put your butt on the forward part of the seat. That is assuming that your feet will fit alongside the seat rails. The rails are close enough together that most folks can straddle them. It takes a little getting used to, but it’s doable. If you feel like you’d like a little more height under your butt, you can just take a cushion of some sort that you can slip onto it when you slide off to get into the kneeling position. I’ve also paddled with one knee down, the other leg forward, and the boat slightly heeled.

An alternate solution
is to take out a different canoe, something with a web or cane seat. This works particularly well for those with old, tired butts (like myself). :wink:

" If somebody knows how, I’d be most happy to hear about it. "

So you had already decided what you were going to do and just wanted to see if someone was dumb enough to type a response. I’m glad I’m the only one who wasted their time.

I have a Carbon/ Graphite Wenonah Prism

– Last Updated: Aug-08-08 12:53 PM EST –

that came with a sliding bucket seat. I paddle alot of rough water and I prefer paddling on my knees when needed. I had a Wenonah Voyager that also had a bucket seat. Anyway, I took my new Prism and "carefully" cut the seat off the bottom of the boat with a Dremel tool, I used the larger reinforced cutting wheels. The aluminum cage is mounted to the fininshed floor, so as long as you are careful you won't cut through the Kevlar into the foam core.
Once I had the seat out, I took the boat over to Hemlock Canoe Works and had some S-Glass patches laid over the cutting area just to make it look a little nicer. After the patches were done I ordered a cherry cane bucket seat from Ed's Canoe and mounted it with the help of a friend and some custom-made drops. After some consultation from Wenonah regarding placement measurements and other things they assured me that the Ultra-light layup is most certainly rigid enough to handle a hanging bench seat.

It's definitely worth the work, the boat is much more comfortable to paddle. I also took out all the aluminum thwarts and grab handles and replaced them with wood. The thwarts are walnut and the handles are cherry. The wood to aluminum modifications have barely changed the boat's weight, it's also much more aestheticly pleasing.

Here are a couple pictures:

I'd be happy to email more pics to someone if they were interested

ahh - yourself
This must be “pick on TrentRiver” week.

I DO NOT know how to kneel on my Prism. When I wrote Wenonah (they request purchasers’ comments) I told them I wished I had ordered a web seat.

Nightswimmer , what did you do …
… with the Wenonah bucket seat you removed ??

I just made a post about trying to find one somewhere (used preferably) .

Do you still have it laying around somewhere , interested in selling it ??