foot pedal in canoe

-- Last Updated: Feb-06-13 10:03 PM EST --

Hi All, I have been sitting on these foot pedals for a few months. It's time to install them.

I am installing these in my Old Town Discovery 119K. I purchased the glue on stud kit with them. And that's where I am at. I have all the measuring and test fitting and leaning my shoe against the sideing and measuring and did I mention I measured.

What I am trying to determine now is how big of a glass patch I need for the base of the stud. The base measures 1 3/8 across. I am thinking a 4" rounded square around each(not that I have much more available space). Cover the threads, wet the patch, center the patch on the stud and push the patch down and marry it to the side of the hull.

Is one layer of glass enough? Should I put a second smaller layer on to help reinforce the area where the flat of the stud is?


P.S. It's actually nylon and not fiberglass.

Just follow the directions
The manufacturer of those things doesn’t want your canoe to be any more messed up than you do.

Why did you get them? I’ve never considered putting foot braces into a canoe, so I’m wondering what benefit is expected from them.

Instructions Lacking
Thanks for the reply, and I agree. I am sure the manufacturer would not want me to mess up my canoe. However, the instructions that came with the kit were lacking. After I posted I did a bunch of surfing. I did find better info on their web page. Just not to the detail of the amount of nylon.

I did decide after surfing that I will use two pieces of nylon on each stud. A smaller piece first and then a larger piece over that. I do not think it will be that big of an issue because the pressure against the pedal will be along the boat and not angular.

As for why foot pedals??? I wanted to be more in contact with the canoe when fishing. And fishing is the main reason for the canoe.

Last year I used the standard web seat. However, I felt like I had no leverage against the canoe. So, after a bunch of surfing and contemplating. I decided on installing the Pack Seat and foot pedals.

This setup will give me a solid seat back and solid foot holds so I can lock myself in when paddling or have a place to lock a foot when managing a fish. And the nice part is the foot holds can move.

Prior to this I fished out of boats. I could stand and move some. There was always a feel of contact and control. That control was lacking in the canoe.

And yes, I did try the SitBacker strap on seat. I will be selling those. I did not like them in the canoe or in a small 14’ boat. They move and slide. I am much better off sitting on the built in seats with a pad and stand now and then.


Not a canoe guy, so
Just let me say that if fishing is your main use, what you really need is a fishing-designed sit-on-top kayak.

The Hobie ProAngler is the pinnacle of perfection for kayak fishing, but some folks find them a bit too heavy and/or expensive for their means. I bought one as my first such craft and absolutely love it.

But look into some of the other fishing 'yaks featured on this board’s main page.

The Pinnacle
Yes, cost was a factor. The one man Discovery 119 cost me $250. The seat was $110 and the pedals were $40. So, $400 to get on the water. Not to mention all the rest like a PFD, anchor, paddle and all that stuff.

To make the step up to the Pinnacle I will have to be using it much more than I can at the moment. And I would really want to use one before plopping down the cash.

I must say that a number of the small fishing craft look tempting. But then again. I can lift this canoe out of the truck bed and set it in the water by myself with no trailers or whatever.


Thanks for answering.
Sounds like a good idea. I hope it works out for you.

Solo canoe is a good choice.
Lots of good SOT’s out there, but they are by far not the only good fishing platforms. I think your buy sounds like it was a really good one and that you’ll get a lot of pleasurable use from it.

  • Big D

SOT’s are not the only paddle craft to f
SOT’s are not the only paddle craft to fish from. I will go as far as saying that the only areas that an SOT has any superiority is for stand up fishing and if you are fishing somewhere the selfbailing attributes may be helpful.

As far as the Pro Angler, it is really more jonboat than kayak, but to each his own.

Fiberglass can be pretty strong, make sure you sand and prime before the fiberglass application. I would then test the stud, if it doesn’t seem solid enough add a layer. I have a Wenonah footbar and I really like it.

Let me understand your point
Are you saying that SOT kayaks are easier to stand in the solo canoes? I wasn’t sure how to read which way you meant the advantage on standing to go.

  • Big D

standing and fishing
As a general rule of thumb a SOT will be easier to stand and fish in than a solo canoe. Now if the canoe has a flat bottom and a wide beam, and the SOT has a narrower beam and a shallow arced bottom (like a Tarpon) than that canoe would probably be easier to stand in.

As a general rule most SOT’s have a rounded keel, or are flat in the hull under the seat, or maybe they have two rounded keels that form a concave area in the hull. Of the big name brands the Tarpon is a notable exception, but I am sure there are others. Kayak manufacturers then add fine vee entries, and chining to add speed to the mix, but everything is a trade. For the most part a SOT will have greater initial stability, because of these design features. Really and truely when it gets so rough that what they give up in secondary stability becomes apparent, I really do not want to be out there.

I also probably was a little harsh in my reply. SOT’s are very nice fishing craft. I just get a little peeved when someone acts like they are the only way to fish. I know of someknowledgable guys that love their Hobie PA’s. They catch alot of fish with them. I fish alot of rivers paddling upstream and down, canoes are definately superior for that type of fishing in my opinion.

I won’t argue with your hull design analysis. I’ll just say that I have no problem standing in any canoe shy of a whitewater canoe that I’ve ever used, and I’ve not been able to stand even in my barge of a tandem SOT, an OK Malibu 2.

  • Big D

foot pedals
I have been thinking about adding foot pedals to my 18 ft Grumman. I am going to try sitting very low in the hull and using a double blade paddle when I paddle solo.

I am wondering if sitting a few inched off of the bottom would make using foot pedals necessary.

Row it.
With the width of an 18’ Grumman canoe, you will need an enormous double bladed paddle to do what you are thinking. That could get rather cumbersome. As far as getting lower in a canoe, using a kneeling position and propping your butt on the edge of the seat rather than a lower sitting position with your legs out in front of you is more traditional. That’s not to say that what you’re thinking won’t work, because it will. But it may not be terribly comfortable unless you are an especially limber individual.

Try putting on some oarlock sockets and getting some oars. I’ve found that 7’ oars work nicely on my 17’ canoe, but a little longer wouldn’t be bad either. It’s just that the cost difference between 7’ and 8’ oars was prohibitive to me, but my financial decisions shouldn’t drive you.

Rowing a canoe is easy and comfortable and can be done from an upright seated position. You won’t set any speed records, but if you’re thinking of soloing in an 18’ aluminum canoe, speed is clearly not high on your priority list.

  • Big D

trial and error
I mocked up a trial seat in front of the rear thwart and sat in it to try the position out. I have good reach, and I think I will be able to reach the water no problem. I have a line on a 260cm double paddle, and it won’t cost me much to try it out. I am interested in trying rowing, but I am not really keen on going backward.

If I am sitting low in the boat, will foot block/pedals help?

Row forward
Push on the oars instead of pull. If you’re in current, it’s easy. If you’re going against current, then you’ll need to pull.

260cm is probably not going to be enough, but if you can try it cheap, try it. I’ll be eager to hear. Most folks I know who use a double bladed paddle on decidedly smaller canoes use a 280cm and don’t lower the seat.

  • Big D

I am over six foot tall with a long torso. Sitting 3 inches off the bottom still leaves my shoulders well above the gunwales. We’ll see.

would sitting low make foot blocks necessary?

I’m 6’3".
Sit as low as you want. I’m suggesting that you don’t HAVE to if you don’t want to. The lower you sit, the longer paddle you’ll need unless you’re a LOT taller than 6’ or very broad shoulders. The way we learn is trying new things and seeing how they work out. If you aren’t going to risk more money than you can afford to try it out, I encourage you to go ahead with your plans. It may work beautifully, but if it doesn’t you’ll still learn a lot that you can apply to your final design.

That said, sitting with legs out in front of you is a kayak position. So, if you’re going to sit with your legs out in front of you instead of bent like sitting in a chair, or kneeling as a whitewater canoeist, then I’d suspect that foot pegs would provide the same sort of advantage that they do in a kayak. So give it a try.

One way to give it a try without sinking much cost may be to a beach chair or a temporary sling seat in your canoe. For feet, in my old rowing canoe, I strapped a closet rod between the seat supports for the seat in front of the rowing seat. That allowed me to either prop my feet against the bar for more push power, or to tuck my toes under it for more pull power. It worked great. The feet are very important to rowing or paddling.

Please keep us informed of your project. These things are a lot of fun, and we learn a great deal from doing them. Pictures would be appreciated.

  • Big D