newest VCP lay-ups and seats

At recent ECCK I saw many new VCP glass boats with plastic pan seats with fabric covering. Overall workmanship is typical of Valley. Biggest apparent difference is the seemingly lighter hull lay-ups and resultant weights. Although SK magazine and VCP literature lists weights as being same.

Does anyone have first hand reports of newer boats’ weights and durability? How about the newer seats? Has anyone lowered them? It looks easy to remove 2 screws on either side and reduce the foam padding underneath.

Other first hand impressions or experiences with newest Valley hulls?

vacuum bagging
VCP is switching to vaccum bagging for at least some of its lay-ups. SK mag had review of Nordkapp LV, they weighed it in at 60lb, VCP replied that the production model is at 54lb or so.

No comment regarding seats.

infusion is good if done right
Actually, my friends tell me they are using infusion method, which if done well is good news as very little excess resin and very strong light lay up. They had some start up problems with it last year, the manager promsed here that these difficulties have been corrected. As with anything just check it out to make sure it is a good one.

Just picked up mine
Just picked up my new Anas Friday 4/14. Beautiful boat. If I remember correctly, the new VSK carbon/kevlar layup is vacuum bagged, while for the glass boats they’ve switched from the old 3 layer to a lighter, stronger 4 layer layup. OK, thats a mouthful! My boat (glass) weighed in at 52# (Valley says 48# in the catalog). 'Cause the Anas has an ocean cockpit they still use the old style seat, which I imediately performed a seat-ectomy on and replaced it with foam. Also got to sit in a Nordkapp LV (no demo, drats!), I did not like the new seat! The padding made it feel like I was sitting way to high, and without the pad its just another plastic seat, ready to be chopped out and replaced with foam. My 2 pennies.


Congratulations on your Anas!

– Last Updated: Apr-26-06 5:50 AM EST –

52 pounds for a glass Valley boat is very good. My Pro-Lite Aquanaut weighs 55 or so. Glad to hear the qc is still good.

IMHO: Slightly higher seat can sometimes be an advantage. The seat in my Romany is higher than the seat in my Aquanaut. It makes the Romany more lively than it would otherwise be. It also makes laybacks more comfortable. I prefer the lower seat in the 'naut because it is my big water traveling boat whose hull section is rounder.

Lighter boats
Great to hear the weights are dropping though I am breaking down now and buying a good lightweight Yak trailer so no more cartopping. I find that at 52 yrs old that a 50lb boat still feels darned heavy!

A trailer is cheaper than buying a new, lower-to-the-ground car and means I can keep using my 55lb boats or a canoe if I buy one for the family.


new seats…

I would look very closely at the new plastic seat. I had one sent to me recently as a warranty repair and it seemed gimicky and flimsy and I don’t like the way it attached to the boat. On my 2005 Nordkapp, there is no flat spot on either side of the cockpit for the aluminum brackets that fit below deck and that accept the screws to even sit flush with the deck–this would obviously create an almost instant weak wear spot. The seat I was sent does not appear to be made to fit my boat. It seems to me that this system wouldn’t work on my boat. (But, who am I? Just a lowly customer in the eyes of GRO… I’m starting to build an unpleasant history with the new GRO, unfortunately.) Maybe the 2006s have a slightly different deck shape to either side of the cockpit coaming so that this seat can attach more securely. I still don’t like the idea of drilling holes in my boat for a seat, however.

2005 models that came with the hung fiberglass seats (like mine) used a SS d-ring to hold the backband. The d-ring had a small bracket attached to it that attached the seat upright via a single through bolt. The d-ring contacted my seat in such a way as to concentrate stresses and caused the hung fiberglass seat to crack where the d-ring contacted it. If I had to do it again (I’m talking about a 2005 Nordkapp), I would ask the factory to just cut a slot in the fiberglass upright of the seat to receive the backband. I still think this is the simplest, least gimicky and strongest way to do it. That’s how my '95 Aleut Sea II is and I’ve never had trouble with it. I ended up repairing and reinforcing my 2005 fiberglass seat with several layers of glass and then cut slots in the seat for the backband strap. This arrangement seems stronger and actually hugs/confroms to my body much better due to the fact that the backband attachment point is about 2" further forward than where it was before. Now the backband wraps around and contours my backside better similar to backbands I’ve seen in the Nigel Foster boats.

Got any pictures
of the seat problem with your Nordkapp? I have one and am curious since I cannot envision what you have experienced.

I’ll email them to you…

I sent them.
4 pics about 2Mb each. If that’s too much, let me know and I’ll shrink them and resend.