I've just bought a Dagger Venture 17 and I want to put in a 3rd seat for the kids. I was thinking of using the Old-town pop-in plastic bench. This seems like a good approach. Does this work well?
The other way is to figure out how to install a wide cane seat, but then using the yoke will likely be difficult. A guy in shop recommended having the kids sit on the bottom either in little chairs or just sit there. I can't see this being comfortable or working well. Sure the center of gravity is lower, but got to make this comfortable and fun or what's the point, right?
So what really works?
OT plastic seat.
I had the snap in seat and I didnt care for it. I bought a web seat and installed it myself. It’s very easy to do and wont take you that long. Any good paddle shop will install it for you for a few bucks. If you do it yourself just make sure you measure twice and cut once.
Any good “how to” install a cane seat?
Thanks, do you have a good guide on how to do this with vinyl gunwales?
Peter, have you searched the archives? This has come up several times. You might search “center seat” and see what happens. I put a third seat into a Wenonah Aurora a couple years back and ordered the seat and hanger hardware directly from Wenonah. One of there technicians even emailed with some advice. I don’t remember the seat impacting my carry yoke situation at all except maybe making the balance a little stern heavy. You could attach the seat to the hanger with wing nuts so the seat could come out if you have long carries.
If you are mainly using the seat for youngsters I’d think the pop in type from Old Town would be fine. My 8 year old likes not having a seat. I put an old closed cell foam camp mat down and she’d good to go. She can kneel to paddle if she likes.
at the way your seats are installed in your canoe and just do the same for the third seat. When you get the seat it will come with all the hardware you need. I placed my third seat about 6" past midship. If your not handy with tools try and find a shop that will do it for you.
I like little "beach chairs"
My kids used low beach chairs for years. It kept them off the bottom of the canoe where the water puddled, and put them high enough to see easily. As they got older, they were able to paddle too.
Get the kind that have a bar on the bottom, not the kind with feet. They can easily be removed from the boat for portaging, not something you can say for a regular center seat.
Once they were too old for beach chairs, we put them in the bow as a paddler. This usually happened somewhere around 7-8, depending on the kid. It usually worked easier if we paddled “backward” - bow paddler sitting on the stern seat facing the stern - to better balance the weight distribution. Of course, the stern paddler (adult) does most of the work when they’re that little!