Help: Iimmersion Research Backband Tips Over Like A Recliner.

Here is a better description of the problem which involves an IR Reggie backband in a sea kayak.

Imagine that your backband was attached to the seat by one thin rope. Imagine that rope ran from the left seat arm along the lowest edge of the backband to the right seat arm.

Then when you press your back against the backband, the top edge would recline back like a lazy chair.

My old band did not do this. The new IR back band reclines and I dont like the feel…its like I am not attached to the boat anymore.

The reclining seems to occur because the straps are attached to pad with a rotary swivels. The old backband just had balanced webbing which made a nice cradle.

The shock cords on the back of the IR backband are no match for the forces.

I do not have the “pro straps” connected to anything…I am not sure how and if they are used.
No instructions came in the IR kit.

If you haven’t watched already;

The ratchet strap is going to pivot. It is rather more like the backhand on an internal frame backpack. It is for support to the lower lumbar not for reclining.

Where is it attached? If it is at the seat pillars then it’ll be susceptible to rotating. If it is attached at the deck bolts, likely using those ProStraps (extenders) then it’ll land more in the small of your back and be less prone to rotate.

Another trick is to replace the lower bungee with cord and a tautline hitch. This will limit the lower edge from rotating .

Lastly, for super solid backrest like support try this with your IR;

See you on the water,
Marshall Seddon
The River Connection, Inc.
9 W. Market St.
Hyde Park, NY
845-229-0595 main
845-242-4731 mobile

I’ve fussed with the backband in almost every kayak I’ve owned so far to get it just right. It’s possible, but not easy. You want it to tip out of the way during entry/re-entry, but pop right back up in the perfect spot after you’re done flopping over it. Judicious use of shock cord up to the coaming and down to the seat, and some experimenting with tension was the trick for me.

I picked up a large hank of heavy duty marine grade shock cord (i think it is 3/8") a few years ago, intending to use it in building a spray deck for a canoe I had at the time Though that project never materialized, I have found this hefty bungee is an improvement over the wimpy shock cord that is used in a lot of products. I’ve used it for cockpit covers and to replace some of the deck bungees on boats. It has more “snap” pressure to it than the cords I replaced. Lots of sources for it on Ebay in any length. Might help keep your backband in place. Just search on “marine grade shock cord” for the selections.

I remember some people would glue a small block of minicell foam behind the seat instead of having a backband. Just enough to keep your butt from sliding back and it would also aid in rotation. That might solve the flopping problem.

I modify the Reggie considerably for touring use. First I special ordered mine without the ratchet straps, as they’re of no real use if you’re not paddling whitewater and the Nylon straps work fine without the ratchets. I add a padeye near the top center on he back. I attach this to the underside of the coaming using bungee cord. This angles the top toward the back and creates a ramp effect that makes it easy to slide into the cockpit. Once I’m in, the bungee allows the backband to sit flat against my pelvis.

I made my own out of about a 12" length of 3/4" PVC. I slid a 3" wide 12" length of pool noodle over the PVC. I ran my strap through the PVC that attach to the sides of my seat. I ran a heavy duty 3/8" bungee through the PVC also. The bungee attaches to the inside top at the back of the cockpit. I didn’t need to add a padeye as there was already a fiberglass attachment point on my Buccaneer, I did the same thing with the Shearwater I built. Both are sea kayaks. It has worked very well for me. It has worked better than the back bands that came with the boats. It easily moves out of the way as I enter and pops back into place when I am seated.

My final and successful solution ( to keep the backband from annoyingly tilting forward)
was to move the backband all the way back and modify the seat backwards accordingly.
This has given me more cockpit room… is actually more comfortable than the original fixed
;position ‘seat’… and only requires me to adjust the foot pegs BACK a couple of notches from what
they were before… See attached photo…

Moving the seat affects the center of buoyancy of the boat and how it handles in wind. Moving it rearward will increase a boat’s tendency to lee cock, which is a pretty dangerous condition, as it can be really hard to deal with. Unless the boat has a pretty strong tendency to weathercock, you could end up with a really poorly handling boat. I’ve owned a boat that tended to lee cock, so I know what a bear it can be to deal with that condition.

Moving the seat is not the best way to deal with a backband issue.