I'm re-thinking Mad River IQ seats

For a while lately I’ve been down on the Mad River IQ, because of it’s cost and finicky-ness. However, today after sending my 58 year old body on another long day on the water my knees and back are real sore. I can kneel on good knee pads for maybe 5 hours tops. I can sit on a bench seat with my legs extended forward for maybe 3 hours tops. When I switch back and forth during the day I can get maybe 5 hours total before serious pain sets in. I know some of you (McRea?) have declared the MR IQ seats to be the most comfortable, ever. Just curious where I can buy one seat and retro-fit it to my OC1, then I can have a choice of kneeling or sitting, and while sitting my lower back will be supported. I could order one through my local dealer but that seems to take forever and a day. My last order took 3 months for half and 6 months for other half. If there’s a canoe salvage yard somewhere maybe I can just buy a used seat? I tried an online search and got lots of promo stuff but no online source where I can buy one.



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gotcha, thanks Randall
I did actually find one on line last night, but for $95. As I recall the IQ seat is very comfy fo r sitting, but not as supportive for kneeling. I’ll look around locally here and find a IQ boat I can demo before I spend that much money on a seat



lower back support

– Last Updated: Nov-26-06 9:07 AM EST –

You've probably already thought of this, but have you tried a back rest? Some folks have used kayak back bands while others have used canoe-specific items like this:

The backband from www.gear4portaging.com is supposed to be really good, but their website shows it as only fitting bucket seats.

And I don't know what you are kneeling on, but the kneeling pad from Grade VI is the best one I've found. I've used all of the others and I can feel a difference after a day on the water.

Minor correction

– Last Updated: Nov-26-06 7:43 PM EST –

Hey C2G! Long time no see, eh? Our backband was designed to solve the problem that bucket seats have, which is that the bucket seats provide a lousy platform to strap any seat cushion/backrest to. The backband also works great with bench seats, and gives you the ability to adjust the height (which most strap-on seats/backrests don't). Thanks for the heads up - I'll get that clarified on the website during the "off season".

Edit: In answer to the original post - the advantage a backband gives is good support in the lumbar region. It's not really a backrest, but more a lower back support. It works especially well with a footbrace. If you want to give one a try, let us know and we'll send you one out. If it doesn't solve the problem, just send it back (we send an invoice with the product, so you don't have to pay until you know it works for you).

So how's life out east?

Kevin Carr

Thanks for the clarification. I thought I’d read that your backband would fit bench seats. It’s good to know that’s correct. Sounds like it’s time to place an order :slight_smile:

Things are going great here. We’re still getting some great paddling weather. I just got back from a pleasant afternoon paddle with some friends. I don’t remember the last time I was able to wear sandals, shorts, and a tank top to go paddling at end of November!

I hear ya
Planned on a paddle down the Root on Saturday until the sound of shotguns reminded me it’s deer season. Hopefully there will be enough liquid water left when that season is over!

CVCA web page, nice
I checked out the CVCA web page and I’m beginning to develop an idea to install a tractor seat, with back brace and sqwoosh pad. but not on a pedastal, put it on bar thwarts so I can still tuck my feet under for kneeling. then I can use the CVCA cantilevered yoke pads for portaging. A refinement would be to make the seat sliding so I can adjust for trim, and when portaging I can slide the seat with attached yoke pads to the balance point for better carrying. Sweet, comfortable, utilitarian and sturdy/safe. Thanks for the ideas everyone.

bucket on bars

– Last Updated: Nov-27-06 9:39 PM EST –

Wenonah www.wenonah.com or Western Canoe and Kayak http://www.westerncanoekayak.com/ might have a stock setup you could just drop in.

Here's a link to a photo of what WCK sells:
I've only dealt with them once, but it was a good experience and I'd be glad to do business with them again.

And this should get you a general idea of what you'd be getting from Wenonah:
They are really good folks to deal with too. You can call the number on the accessories page of their website for more information or if you want to order from them.

Both companies make side-mounted sliding bucket seat setups as well as the fixed side-mounted buckets.

Good luck!

Clipper Bucket Seat System
If you are looking to customize your existing canoe, you can purchase parts from Western Canoeing & Kayaking. We ship within 48 hours. I also highly recommend a footbrace and side thigh pads as shown here.


Wenonah also has a good system.


Western Canoeing & Kayaking

Home of Clipper Canoes

I think I’ve got it
just picked up two Mad River IQ seats from Appomattox River Company. I’m installing one in my Esquif Vertige whitewater canoe tomorrow and will take it for a spin on the Maury River class II-III on Saturday for a 14 mile trip. After that I will be able to report my opinions.

Thanks for the web links btw, lots of good information there, and Mary, my one regret in buying boats this year is that I did not snap up the Clipper Prospector 14 that was for sale in Maryland. I really like that design and it would have been perfect for the first 165 miles of my epic adventure on the James river to happen here next spring, and the Clipper Solitude would be perfect for the remaining 65 miles of flatwater and tidal river. Headwaters to the Bay, the James River Challenge. To raise awareness and money for the James and the Chesapeake Bay. Both are in trouble and we need the help of everyone upstream to make the down stream less dead.


Andy Lee