Foot braces - need input

Well, last Friday I guess I managed to destroy one of the foot braces in my Arctic Hawk. For whatever reason, the darn things are plastic (it’s a Wildy boat), and I guess they’re not really built to withstand much pressure. So, I need suggestions on what to replace them with. I’d like to make this happen in short order and don’t have a bunch of time on my hands to fiddle with custom outfitting stuff.

I’d like to know what foot brace packages you folks have had the most luck with both from an ease of installation and a durability point of view. I’d also like to hear any pros / cons of going to a built up bulkhead in lieu of hte foot braces.


lots of surface area for your feet and can be adjusted with your feet without taking off sprayskirt. Available at newfound wood works .com

If you want to go yakima

– Last Updated: Jul-19-04 7:42 PM EST –

you just need two quick cuts with a hacksaw on the ends of the rails per side. It is easy. In other words they should fit onto the same bolts or studs as the rails suppplied.

Well worth it!

See my review of keepers foot braces.

Bulkhead foot braces are nice but putting them on a plastic bulkhead is not comforting to me. Others here have done it to good effect though, so you pay your money and take your choice.

On beefy fiberglass bulkheads go for it. Most folks seem to believe in a 15 degree slant angle. Obviously if you are using 8 inches of foam all your energy will go into compression rather than into forward drive.

I agree Yaks are the way to go I have both them and the keepers and prefer the Yaks. Keepers are ok if you make sure you pull way back on the spring clip if not they will move or come off all together. If you lose your foot peg in bad conditions (I did twice with Keepers) you can be in a lot of trouble.

Second choice Yakimas…
First choice foam…

I couldn’t believe the difference in comfort.

I have plastic bulkheads, but still under warrantee so ??? I think if you make them fairly snug you won’t have that much stress. If your cockpit opening is large enough you can paddle with your knees together for a change…

I don’t find that much compression especially when up to speed… Angle the last one, it’s great to have arch support… It takes some fussing to get them shaped but worth it IMHO… GH

Foam 1st, Yakimas/KajakSport pedals 2nd
Full surface (bulkhead) foam is hard to beat. Anyone without a rudder should consider doing it. Difference is amazing. Spoils you!

Pic of mine (15 degree angle is not visible):

I had a rental recently (with Yakimas) and had forgotten just how limiting pegs are and how much their limits on foot position (and comfort) impact control and cause a chain reaction up the rest of the body (one of those things you don’t see as a problem - and just live with - until after it’s fixed!).

If you really need rails/pegs, consider the Yakimas and also bolting on KajakSport pedals (with a slight tilt). Those at least have decent surface areas and some flex.

KajakSport pedals:


One short ride in Greyak’s boat…
…a few weeks ago was all it took to convince me to do mine… GH

Converted to Sealines
earlier this summer, to get solid footpegs and the nifty rudder setup.

So far I find the Sealines to be very comfortable to press my feet against (I like the “rounder” shape as compared to the original Yakimas). Am really impressed at how little toe input is required to get the rudder to work.

Who had the Sealine rail failures? Greyak? Greyhawk? Anyone else have bad experiences? So far I have had no evidence of fatigue, but I’m not an energetic pusher (more of a loafer).


Foam on bulkhead
Bracing against the bulkhead cannot be beat - providing your front bulkhead is glassed-in decently.

One failed -the other showed similar stress in same spot.

It’s a known and documented weakness of the rail design. Check the reviews and archives. Whether or not it’s a big deal depends on how and where you paddle. Happened to me in the middle of Port Everglades (not great), but I was able to paddle another 15 miles with minimal dificulty so not a huge problem. Having no replacement for a couple months WAS a huge problem.

Inspect your rails. It’s a cumulative thing. Stress over time adds up until it goes. Not something that is fine and then breaks. You can’t really see it in the boat until it’s already shot, and if you don’t know what you’re looking for you might miss it even if you take them out to inspect. I have pictures I can email so you can see what to look for (pulled them off webshots).

Keep asking SealLine about the aluminum replacements. No longer a pressing issue for me (but I’d still like a set in case I ever sell the boat) as I have no rudder and am not limited to pegs. Full foam is WAY better. Enough better to let it make the skeg/rudder decision unless you race a lot.

Here’s the original and rather lively thread:

Got me to thinking
I did see your pics (but am at work and Community Webshots is blocked).

When I get home I’m going to look into installing a lightweight SS hose clamp around the rail immediately behind the foot peg. Maybe one in front as well. This might reduce the tendancy of the peg to pry the rail open with each push. Once adjusted, I have no reason to move the pegs. Maybe I can set them up to slide a bit, allowing adjustability. Don’t know if this will fly, but is worth a look.


Hmm… (options)
Think I see what you have in mind. Could work. Should only need one right at the front of the pedal - the wider the better(?) as the leverage tries to force it out and toward the back. If I remember right it’s the corner of the block shaped piece in the rack that pushes out against thin lip on the rail (while the back edge pushed into the rail against the hull and acts like a hinge point the pedal assembly rotates out on) - and that’s where it stressed it.

While you’re at it, consider mounting a foot board between the pegs - tilted as Patrick suggests (This was my plan A before the rail failure). You’ll still be able to use the Toe Pilots if you set it up right, the stresses will shared on both sides, and you’ll have much more surface area to brace against. You can pad it too.

Big surface area (and padding) = happy feet = happy knees = happy hips = happy back = happy paddler.

Only potential drawbacks are a remote entanglement hazard (depends on your design) and access to space ahead of the board for storage (again, you can design for this). If you don’t have usable space it’s no big deal. If you do but don’t use it regularly, you can fill it with a float bag or one of those collapsible 5 gal water jugs to take up volume and reduce pump out time.

Funny thing about that adjustability feature (which will can still work with a footboard on many boats). It’s so great when you first get them, and of so little use after for most (though some may change for racing vs. rough stuff, etc.). Really great if others use the boat though.

I’m not so sure the system deserves all the praise it gets. To me the biggest reason they stand out is that most of what’s out there looks like something you’d get a “D” for in shop class. Some scrap extruded aluminum and about 15 minutes (I know there’s more to them - and simple/reliable is good). The SealLines look better and at least tried to go after two big issues: Fixed foot position steering and adjustablity of pegs form seated positions. Those it does pretty well. The rudder blades are nice too (but then there’s that box).

For me, with no rudder to worry about and no adjustments needed after I got the spot - they were no better than anything else - and maybe worse with the rounded surface.

I’ve had Keepers, Yakimas, SealLines, and tried a KajakSport once too (best pedals IMO). After going to full foam - all pegs suck. Surf ski set up is better than pegs, though I have a ways to go in adapting to using heel pressure instead of the balls of my feet for bracing.