Valley seat replacement...

The uprights on my 2005 Valley fiberglass seat are cracking where the metal d-ring that connects the backband to the seat contacts the seat.

GRO says they are sending me out a new 2006 seat that is all plastic. To install this new seat, apparently I need to cut out the current seat, drill two holes on each side of the cockpit opening and bolt in the new seat.

I’m a little leary of cutting out a seat that is fiberglassed in and installing a seat that is held in by 4 bolts. It seems to me that the seat that is fiberglassed in spreads stress around the whole of the cockpit opening whereas bolts tend to create areas where stresses are concentrated [at the bolts].

I haven’t seen this new seat, but apparently it’s got the necessary padding (hips, knees) built in somehow. Has anyone seen this or does anyone have some good pictures of this seat?

Thanks for your input.

take it to
your dealer where you purchased the boat from and ask them if they would fix it for you…they are the ones who sold it to you and since gro is sending you the parts no real out of pocket cost for them except time…

The dealer I bought it from…
…is no longer a dealer. Long story short, I’ll probably be doing this myself if I do it.

I would like some input from folks who have the new seat and/or have run into the problem that I’m having.

I’m thinking of relocating the d-rings forward a bit on the old seat such that they do not cause a stress point on the edge of the seat as they currently do. A little fiberglass patching would then likely restore full strength to the seat.

That could help your seatuation…
now sell the Valley seat to me.

Just got Sea Kayaker…
…which has a picture of the new seat and answered most of my questions.

Have replacemet seat in my 2004 Valley
The seats in the 2004s were really bad. Valley sent out replacements last year. I believe the replacements maybe the replacement you describe. Tom Bergh, from whom I bought my Aquanaut, did the replacement for me. He chose not to use the screws, but to epoxy the new seat in place. It could also be glassed in place.

why not
just cut the existing seat out and replace it with closed cell, shaped to fit your specs?

VCP foam seat
I have used VCP foam seats in two boats and they are so much better than the previous fiberglass ones (IMHO) in regards to comfort, support, and weight difference!

The VCP foam seat has hip pads attached and is so very easy to glue in with Weldwood cement/glue too. I swear it lightened my boats by at least 5 lbs as well as increasing comfort and lowering my center of gravity for increased stability too. 'Course, I am tall so the deck height was no problem either.

I picked mine up from TKC in Wickford and note that I had choice of two thicknesses of them too. I also covered mine with cloth for increased wear resistance and “personalization”…

As to cutting out the seat, I cut it out high up on the side using a hacksaw blade (and wearing a filter mask). I put a strip of masking tape (ala Brian Nystrom) to not only mark my cut line, but to also help keep the blade from slipping.

Easy fix.


Valley Seat repair
I had the same problem with my Valley glass seat. I corrected the problem by removing the back band and replacing it with a minicell back rest. The back band is pulling on the d-ring causing the stress cracks on the seat. If the cracks aren’t too bad yet, it will probably be fine as is (mine didn’t get any worse), or if you want, you could do a little glass repair in the area. I really like the Valley glass seat and find it very comfortable, especially when combined with a custom fitted minicell back rest.

What was the reasoning…

– Last Updated: Apr-20-06 3:49 PM EST –

Wilsoj2, What was the reasoning behind epoxying the seat in instead of bolting it?

Why not bolts
The previous seat was bolted and the holes had worn enough for water to weep into the cockpit. I wasn’t fond of that. Tom decided to avoid that problem. At that stage the choice was to glass or expoxy the seat in place. Tom chose epoxy to reduce added weight. Even though it is a Pro-Lite layup, the boat is quite heavy. It is not as heavy as one friend’s vintage Explorer, but it is very noticably heavier then another friend’s standard layup Chatham 18.

I’d rather not drill holes in my boat…
…so I’m curious as to the options here. GRO shipped out the seat to me yesterday so I should get it soon.

I understand there are seat ‘brackets’ and that it is these that are actually bolted to the boat and that the seat then attaches to these brackets. Is that correct? If it is correct then, you must have had these brackets epoxied in and not the seat itself?

What to you think are the pros and cons of expoxying versus bolting? Bolting seems like it would allow you to easily change out components, at the cost of watertighness and drilling holes in your boat. Epoxying might make putting a new seat in a bit more complicated, it seems.

I was
under the impression that the seat bolts to the existing seat hangers. Let us know what you end up with.

Uncertain but…
I think my seat is epoxied to the boat.

The advantage of bolting the seat would be ease of removing - though I think I might use some epoxy even if bolting as insruance against movemnt and/or stress.

I can not assert objectively advantages of glassing or epoxying the seat in place. My preference for it came from not liking the look and idea of it being bolted and the experience of the widening of the holes from using the boat.

From the pictures I’ve seen…
…it appears that the seat bolts to the deck on either side of the cockpic coaming. Look at the latest Sea Kayaker and the Nordkapp LV review. There’s a picture of the cockpit area. Same thing is visible in other pictures of new Valley boats.

i dont think i’ve ever been happy
with any seat in any of my boats with the exception of the Wisper and FC’s seating is revolutionary, with that said i’ve gotten pretty calm about getting the Dremel out or the drill…if you worry about a hole or two here or there (hydration system port, locking bar,trim systems, bilge ejection ports, etc) think about the hatches-are they not giant holes in your boat? and yes bulkheads can fail just glad its a rare occurence.

Valley 'seat-ectomy’
I have pics of removing a seat from an Anas Acuta at:

They also show how to construct a simple Minicel foam replacement seat.