IR backband on Tsunami?

I love my Tsunami, but hate the seatback. I’m pondering replacing the seatback with an IR Lounge Band. Since the original setup was backband-free, this is going to require lots of drilling (seat towers and coaming).

Any experience doing this? I’ve watched IR’s helpful videos a few times, and it seems doable. Really just wondering if anyone here has done this and if the end result was worth the trouble.

did you mean this video?

As that shows it pretty well. Doesnt look to hard. Since I use my Tsunami 140 for just creeks I didnt bother and just use the seat back in it now.

What drilling? I guess if you want to, have at it. Otherwise, just back out the seat pillar bolt(s) and use the hypalon/nylon strap extenders that are included with the backband fastening them with the existing hardware.

One of the most common retrofits I do to kayaks.

Go Lounge.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

Of course!
Thanks for the obvious tip.

No prob.
Save the drilling for the solar panel powered margarita blender, I mean eco-powered apres-paddle rehydrator.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

worth it
I have an IR backband in my Tsunami 140, could send you a couple pics if you want of how it’s mounted. I think the only drilling I did was two small holes for the suspension bungee on the rear lip of the coaming.

Yes, I’d love to see that if you could. Thanks.

here you go
I attached the ratcheting straps using the rear of the two seat-tower screws on each side, I think that’s kinda what Mr. Marshall described above. The other way is to dremel a vertical slot at the back of each seat tower, the IR backband kit comes with these cylindrical anchors that you could put in there and run the straps through the slots. The lazy way worked good enough for me. Once you remove the stock backrest per the Wilderness video instruction, this is a 5-minute install.

Totally awesome
Thanks, that’s exactly what I wanted to see. Looks gorgeous. I’m doing this.

Pro Straps

– Last Updated: Sep-26-13 10:10 AM EST –

I would seriously consider using the Pro Straps with the IR backband. A bit more work to drill/cut out for attachment but you will gain the full benefit of the backband and have a much more secure set-up with far less twisting and bending upon re-entry. I used this set-up on my Valley Nordkapp and and Aquanaut.

I think I’m going to go that route, do a little drilling. Just want to make sure my drill holes are high enough so that my skirt covers them, right?

IR backband on Tsunami w/ prostraps
I have a Tsunami 135 and put in an IR loungeband using the pro-strap option.

I did not install by backing out the pillar screws…in fact I didn’t even remove the pillar screws to remove the straps from the stock seat, I was lazy and just cut them- you can see in the pics below.

I don’t know if the 135 is different, but it has a slot already cut in the pillar so I could easily use the chucks instead. I had the chuck attacked to the strap, slid the chuck+strap into the pillar using the big circular cut out in the pillar, and then slid the strap out the back slot and into the ratchet.

For the pro straps, I drilled small holes and then connected and squared out a slot using a razor knife, just as pt2 of the video shows.

Here are some blurry cell phone pics:

The WS backband?

– Last Updated: Sep-30-13 11:26 PM EST –

I don't think it is available for sal anymore, but one used to be able to purchase the stock backband that WS uses in the Tempest line. I had that installed in a Tsunami 145 and it was a great fit. I like it better than the IR versions available today [edit: because it slides sideways with torso rotation and also nicely disappears out of true way during laybacks, while not interfering with reentries].

Thanks for the pics.

WS vs. IR

– Last Updated: Sep-30-13 8:54 PM EST –

I have the WS (Harmony) backband on my Tsunami 145. I installed it shortly after buying the boat a few years back - when I knew the high seat didn't work for me re. re-entries.

It's actually a nice backband and a definite step up from the high-back seat. While I like this backband quite a bit (and it even "matches" the Phase3 seat) it still doesn't give the support that my IR Lounge Bands do, especially with the Pro-Straps installed. Also, the WS band is typically installed with the rear support straps running nearly straight back. IR recommends that the Pro-Straps are installed at an angle, giving more room in back of the seat to store items without disconnecting the straps.

I believe Austin Kayak still has this WS model for sale but it is $20 more than the Lounge Band!

The IR Lounge Band with Pro-Straps is hard to beat IMO.

I was kinda surprised at the price difference in the WS vs. IR backbands, especially given the reviews.

WS backband on Tsunami
I switched out the seat back on my Tsunami 125 with the WS backband. I think I found it available on Ebay. I had sat previously in a Tempest 170 with the same stock band, and it felt pretty good.

After I installed it on the Tsunami, I noticed it seemed to sag some. The rear straps were barely long enough to reach the band. I then checked back with the Tempest and realized the rear combing appears to be about 2" closer to the seat base than the Tsunami. This was all done with the precise finger length measuring technique. My guess is the boats with seat backs have more space required for the seat back.

I still like the way it works in the Tsunami, but occasionally reach back to shift it up.

get hip pads too
I don’t think Tsunamis come with hip pads. With the back band the hips complete a nice fitting seat. Ive put the Dagger back band and hip pads in a couple of Tsunamis. They work great.

Good luck.

Hip Pads
I concur re. the Harmony hip pads. I put these in my Tsunami 145 and my wife’s 140 and they made a big difference in “feeling” the boat and subsequent control. Actually thinking of adding them to my Aquanaut.

I added hip pads earlier this year.