Sources for Foam/Custom Kayak Seats

As an alternative to carving out a custom seat from minicell, does anyone know of custom or other foam seats that I might retrofit my Explorer with? I’d like to avoid having one that’s too dedicated to my personal keester, as the boat will be used by others as well. May even end up for sale in the near future, also. Would also consider another manufacturer’s production seat, if it would ‘hang’ in my boat cleanly, and not give the impression of a backyard hack job. Many thanks.

Custom seats…
I have heard nothing but rave reviews about Joe Greenley kayak seats.

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He, along with many others sell minicell foam. May be too individualized for your needs…but take a look at his boats…works of beauty!


Have two custom seats from
Redfish Kayaks-Outstanding. Perfect pressure fit,

really comfortable, lower CG, lighter weight.


foam seats
Very good foam seats that are quite nicely molded to the shape of your butt can be obtained from Great River Outfitters. I have used one for 6 years and have never found them at all uncomfortable. They also have foam “wings” that come up the sides and can be adjusted to fit close to your hips for additional support and control of the boat.

Depends on the bottom
as a broad shouldered, broad bottomed person those tractor seats do not fit me at all. Even the dimples are way too narrow for me and I find the pan very short. I weigh about 220 andmy trunk weight needs to be distributed over a bit of area.

For a narrow hipped to average sea kayaker they would probably be ok though. Redfish is great but the price difference puts them in another class. If your boat is a keeper and you want the ultimate, and you do not want to take the time to carve you own, redfish is well worth considering.

too custom??
you can carve a seat to provide more thigh support than a short glass seat and still accomodate a range of paddlers. What is it about your Explorer seat you don’t like? A 2"x2" chunk of minicell from JR.Sweet will allow you to make one fine seat. Even if you buy two chunks and end up having to learn on one you’ll be still cheaper than anything purchases.

Seat Would be fine
if it would just stay in the boat. Lee, the stock seat snapped out during rolling practice in the pool last winter-the boat is less than a year old. Waited months for a new replacement from Nigel, and the shop where I purchased it from epoxied it in, only to snap again 500 yds into the shakedown paddle. From the way the seat is crudely hung on two malformed ‘ears,’ it seems to me that there is a whole lot of flex going on under paddling torque. Carving up a minicell base to fit underneath it and provide support would probably be most judicious, but if I’m going to dedicate the time to do that, it might be easier just to retrofit a foam seat. This would probably involve drilling the deck to accomodate a back band mounting location though. I do like the flexibility to loosen up the backband and move it out of the way, versus a fixed backrest like the Redfish seat has. The hip bolsters on the Redfish seat look very reassuring also, though for faster fitness paddling, I prefer no bb and the freedom to torso rotate.

From the way the seat is crudely hung on two malformed ‘ears,’ it seems to me that there is a whole lot of flex going on under paddling torque.

The stock seat should have foam packed in on the sides/bottom so that the supports/hangers aren’t taking flexing. Anyone with average glassing skills should be able to install your stock seat correctly.

I’d strongly suggest spending the big bucks,$80 or so for a 2’x4’ half-bun of medium density minicell and start carving away. It may be slightly more effort than transporting the kayak to the kayak shop and back but at the end of it you’ll be that much further along to making the kayak right for you.