Westside Thundebolt questions

for you folks with them.

If you are not rolling do you use the thigh straps?

Would you prefer the boat with them or without them?

Thanks in advance,


no straps
mine has them, but i never use them, because they are uncomfortable and inhibit good form. so, between that and the huge cockpit, i treat this as a “no rolling” boat. that means it is typically confined to relatively narrow rivers without much in the way of waves, or relatively close to shore in large lakes, again on low wave days. basically it is my winter training boat, when i want to get in a few miles and stay dry. i’ve also used it for shallow water racing with the kickup rudder.


on my EFT. I never use them-they lock my legs down and impede using leg pumping. The EFT has a tighter cockpit and pronounced coaming that allows you to hook your knees under to roll it (quite easily in fact). As best I can figure, the straps are there purely to keep you from falling out of the boat if you dump; in rougher water I tend to hook my knees under automatically JIC.


– Last Updated: Aug-12-07 11:36 PM EST –

with Andrew. Based on the cockpit size my EFT had, chances were good that if I dumped the skirt wouldn't stay intact. Luckily never got to try the theory out,, but mostly stayed relatively close to shore. Straps just rubbed my thighs when I pumped my legs,, for extra stability and control as Trilobite said it is quite easy to place the knees under the coaming.

Jack,, did you get one?


Picking up the "Bullitt"
in a couple of weeks which also comes with the thight straps and we were not sure if we want them.

When we test paddled it neither one of us cared for them.


How are they secured?
Are they removable?

Jack L

Thigh Straps Attachment
Doug uses a single bolt through the hull for each. I usually just fasten mine loosely in an X pattern and let them flop in the boat; they don’t really get in the way, and if you ever decide to sell the boat in the distant future (To me? Smile.), they’re there for those ambitious folks who enjoy tandem rolling.

I have never bought anything thinking of the resale aspect, but that is a good point.

I doubt if we will be wanting to sell it (smile).

At 49 years of marriage, I think a “divorce boat” is out of the question.

I just hope our tandem canoes will welcome her into the fleet.



My eft and t-bolt both have very small out of way thigh braces from old ww boat. On st lawrence have been nailed by 2 or 3 ft wave from freighter and survived OK with t-bolt by moving knees out to grab unto braces. Same with t-bolt for 70 miler.

The trick is to have them out of the way so as not to interfere with good form. The ft is rollable with the braces but I am not handy at rolling. Did blackburn twice with eft and I love thigh braces. The eft has front and rear bulkheads. T-bolt has only rear bulkhead. Save your back from huge pain of emptying water out. Jack, have a great time with bullit!