Shop time: I can('t) do it!

-- Last Updated: Jul-18-08 1:12 PM EST --

I need to be at work Saturday morn at 5:00AM, so I plan on spending several hours in the shop futzing with the Magic.

First on the agenda is to cant the hammock seat. Contrary to conventional wisdom I plan on canting it UP in teh front, to offer more support under my thighs (seat is for sitting only). Maybe 1" off the front drops at the most. Q.E.D. Test paddle on Sunday.

Then to the bigger project. Having seen N.T.s foot pegs in his Malecite I decided to give my own design a try. Unwilling to fork over the bucks for a Bell carbon drapery pole I briefly considered Yakima/Werner units mounted via glassed in studs (too permanent at this time). Then I hit upon the idea of mounting a wooden track under the front thwart, attached via the thwart affixing bolt. The pedal track would mount vertically with the pedals hanging down. My journey to Fayetteville WV last weekend did not yield a set of Yakimas though, so I have come up with an alternative design using 1/8x1-1/2" 6061 aluminum and ash pedals that bolt into a series of holes drilled into the aforementioned track. Lots of fabrication required. I will post pics when complete.


PS: Maybe some design work on my catapult for R-Town!

Thwart/gunnel stress
If I’m picturing what I think you’ve described, essentially hanging a footbrace from the forward thwart, I’d worry about the torque at the gunnels.

Thought about that
Track is ash, 3/4" wide x 1" tall, 12" O.A.

Bolted at teh middle, with spacers fore and aft same thickness as the thwart. Initially to be unsecured for a test, I may run screws up into the inwales if things look promising.


Oh, so the “tracks”…
…are affixed parallel to the rails via 3-point attatchment with your pedals hanging from them?

I’m curious because I’ve been trying to figure out a footbrace installation that doesn’t require putting holes in, or gobs of fabric/resin on, the hull.

I’ll post pics when I have something to take a picture of.


For what it’s worth

– Last Updated: Jul-19-08 6:04 AM EST –

here are my homemade foot braces. Made from 1/4 aluminum angle and some curb alert crutches that I found. It could work in the Magic and I will scale down something for my Magic and it will incorporate the seat drops as a fastening point. The Malecite has very strong attachment points at the gunwale where the portage yoke bolts up. these braces are strong enough that you could literally stand on them. I think in the Magic you would need to use the seat drop as the mounting point to avoid flex because of the exaggerated tumblehome. And don't forget, footbraces are useless without a decent back rest or at least a bucket seat.

Very nice, N.T.
Reuse of the crutches is clever and it looks to be an elegant installation. Wholly, quality work, I’d say.

Not sure why everyone is afraid to…
drill a hole or two in their canoe !

I have installed at least four adjustable foot braces using aluminum angles rivited to the side of the boat with holes drilled in them a inch or so apart and then two aluminum tubes one with a slightly larger diameter than the other fitted in side each.

Use a bolt and wing nut to affix the cross tubes to the holes in the angles and then when you are on the water, if you want the brace closer to you or father away, just loosen a wing nut on each side and change it to a differnt hole location.

I saw a real neat temporary one from a friend and my daughter has copied it and has been using it until she gets her permanent one.

You take a piece of aluminum tubing and duct tape a small piece of pool noodle, about 3 inches long to each end. Then run a piece of rope through the tube and tie each end to a side of your seat. Adjust the rope length as required to get the foot brace where you want it. the pool noodles keep it just about the height you want it above the floor of the canoe.



'Cause it’s a PITA…
…to go from ‘holes’ back to ‘no holes’ should one wish, say for refit or resale. I like your temporary rope/tubing/noodle idea, though.

(The sound of me having a siezure at the thought of putting a tube/noodle/rope footbrace in a Black Gold Magic)

Sorry, but I want an application that is a bit more elegant. Also, the thought of being ridiculed by N.T. is enough to keep my work on the professional side!

11:00 AM EDT, seat is canted and I am waiting for glue joints to set on the pedal tracks. Don’t know if I will finish the pedals today, but I will post pics of the installed tracks tonight on Grove Street. Tomorrow is a paddling day.


I meant that as a temporary one.
You should see the foot brace to end all foot braces that I just made last week.

We are doing the Adirondack 90 miler in September in a four person canoe.

The portage buggy has to go upside down in front of the third paddler which means there is no foot brace there, so I drilled three holes a inch apart in the top parallel side tubes of the buggy and added a piece of aluminum tubing to go across them using a bolt and wing nut to hild them down. They are adjustable either forward or backward a few inches.



Oh, I almost forgot: the portage buggy is a old baby jogger that I got at a thrift shop for 12 bucks.

I stripped it, cut the front wheel tubing off and, perish the thought; used pool noodles to form a nice cradle.

this will be it’s third 90 miler and it has also served well in carrying our kayaks to various launch points.

I buy a boat for me, not for resale
Also, all you have to do is put a rivit in the hole(s)

I have added so much aluminum tubing, channnels and rivits to one of our racing canoes that I could probably enter it in the “Aluminum nationals” and no one would notice that the boat was kevlar.

On the resale: even though it is not for sale, right now I have a waiting list of people that want it, if and when I want to get rid of it.



Wish someone would figure out a good way
… to install removable wooden gunnels without making holes in the hull too. Same for grab loops and painters.

Ok, not really.

Another tweak
Something to try: instead of the foot pads near the crutch ends, mount an aluminum tube across from one side to the other. You can hose clamp on some webbing at the center area, or edges as you desire. The webbing stirrups help you control the boat more, and having feet at the center keeps the stroke more balanced.

I just use old scout tent poles, beat the ends flat with a rock or sledge, drill holes, and bolt on.

But Clarion
what would I do with my free time???


Pics here

Top two are the footbrace tracks. Only attachment is via the 10-24 bolt for the front thwart. The fore and aft sections simply butt up against the inwales.

I have cut out the aluminum plates that clamp to the tracks and cut the wood that makes the pedal body. Pics tomorrow eve.

I have nerfed my back and am going to hold off on boating tomorrow.


Hey Steve…
Where do you get the webbing.

I want to put some on my foot brace in the new four man canoe.

It is great for leaning way the hell over for some of those quick turns.

Was thinking of using a couple of pieces of rope



LOL I’ve had the discussion
about weather to have a foot brace instead of foot pegs. The answer is…I like to lie down and sleep in the boat sometimes and the foot peg allow me to stretch out much better than the brace does.

Foot brace is held on with
a bolt and wing nut on each side.

-comes off in a couple of seconds for nap time!



Pedal pics

– Last Updated: Jul-22-08 8:07 AM EST –

Added to Grovestreet. Still have some tweaking and lightening (swiss-cheesing) to do, but they are functional.

No pool noodles were harmed in this project.