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Thread: Canoe Stabilizer & Outrigger Floats

  1. #1
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    Default Canoe Stabilizer & Outrigger Floats

    A few years back I was looking for outrigger floats and attachments for canoes, and I came across a company that was making some larger-than-typical outriggers for canoes.

    If I recall correctly, they were molded fiberglass, filled with floatation material (foam of some sort, I believe), and were -considerably- larger than the average floats (perhaps as long as 6 or 7 feet each).

    The floats in reference gave the canoe the benefit of a trimaran, and if I recall correctly, allegedly increaseed weight-hauling capacity by roughly 200 lbs, either per float, or per set (I can't recall which). In this regard, some of the pics I saw had cargo (likely in water-proof gear bags) lashed to the tops of the outriggers, and, in one set of pics, had kids and/or a dog sitting on top of the outriggers/span bar attachment(s).

    The beauty of these things appeared to be the ease of attaching and detaching the bars and floats, so that you could still have a canoe that would make it up narrow, log-jammed creeks, in its original configuration, but be able to convert it to an ultra-stable trimaran of sorts for carting kids, cargo, etc., around on open water while camping and fishing.

    Has anyone seen these larger floats that I'm referring to? Know where to find them again?? Have any input as to their advantages or draw-backs??

    I'm also searching for a good deal on an older Grumman square-stern, 19' freighter, or similar boat, to attach a 7-10 hp motor to, along with the above-described floats/outriggers.

    Thanks.

    ruffle

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    Default

    I was able, after a couple of days of searching, to locate the outriggers I'd seen a couple of years ago.

    http://bestsmallpontoons.com/kayak_c...tabilizer.html

    In a perfect world, these would have some removable tops, and air-tight cargo chambers inside too.

    For the price that these folks want for two pontoons and the minimal hardware to attach them to a boat, I'd think that either a cedar/fir strip form could be made to manufacture them out of wood and fiberglass, with a removable lid and an attractive appearance, or, for a bit more, perhaps even aluminum, to match the Grumman's canoe's finish.

    Thoughts? Ideas? Criticism?? Volunteers for fabrication??

    ruffle

  3. #3
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    My thought is I wouldn't want to make you a set for that price. My labor would end up awful cheap per hour.
    Vance in AK.

    Matthew 6:33
    "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you."

  4. #4
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    Hi Vance.

    I spoke with a fellow at a shop that fabricates aluminum projects the other day, and for the marine-grade aluminum, in 12 guage (1/16" thickness), on two 8' long x 12" diam. pontoons, and attaching sq. tube, with 9/16" all-thread, we started talking a tentative base price of about $1,000.00. But that is a shop that has all the equipment to roll, shape/form, and weld the project. The more proper equipment for the task, the less it'll cost in the end.

    I figure that by the time the folks in Nebraska would ship the polyethylene floats and hardware up, it'd be darned close to that, and not necessarily exactly what I want.

    But I'll be talking to a couple of other shops that fabricate aluminum projects, at least one of which does more boat-oriented work than the first shop I spoke with.

    edit: The above tentative cost didn't include any internal storage area fabrication costs...

    ruffle

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    Default

    Something else you might look into is aluminum irrigation line pipe. I've seen some that were 10-12" long before. You would jusn need someone to cut the ends (a 45* angle would be nice in the water) & weld on caps & then make the mounts. Almost no actuall fabrication.

    Another option is to simply buy another canoe rig them together in the same way. For $1,000 you can buy a mighty nice canoe & it will haul a lot more than 400#. As a bonus, when it's detached it is useful on it's own.
    Only disadvantage is it would be tuff to paddle alone. Of course you coud stick a small motor mount on either one canoe or a cross bar & use either an elec. or small gas motor.
    Vance in AK.

    Matthew 6:33
    "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you."

  6. #6
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    Thanks Vance.

    I've had a couple of thoughts similar to your ideas.

    I wasn't aware of the irrigation pipe. I'd assume that it's marine grade, especially if its typical use is to be in relatively regular contact with water.

    It would save the cost of rolling and some of the shaping, as well as the majority of the seam welding, especially if it's close to the necessary shape already.

    Do they make it in 10" diam. I wonder? Does it come in 10 ft. lengths?? That wold allow me to modify the ends, and still end up with nearly 9 ft. of finished length. And a 10" diam would likely afford PLENTY of floatation in a 9' length.

    The idea of strapping canoes is something that we used to do on a very temporary basis in travelling slow, wide rivers years ago (Lashing up side-by-side with smaller ropes going thwart to thwart). You either need more than one paddler, or a motor or sail to make it work. (A friend is building a sizable catamaran with a removable 'cabin,' to be used as a larger, deluxe ice-fishing shack, and larger doughnut-style trailer wheels set into the hull, for taking out to the Islands via a smaller outboard motor, beach-combing, and jigging halibut from).

    I'll Google someof the info on that aluminum irrigation pipe. I'm guessing that I might find some of it around Palmer, Delta Jct. and Fbks, as those are the better known farming areas, no?

    ruffle

  7. #7

    Default Cheap Stabilizer

    I went to B&J Commercial and got Shrimp pot marker floats they are 9" dia by 20" long and made of closed cell styrofoam. from there I bent alumium conduit to mount them on. Great split and put on the edge of the canoe for putting on top on the car .and arm rests while fishing.
    But them I'm cheap

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    Hi alaskapiranha,

    For a workable hefty sponson/stabilizer, that sounds like quite a workable idea.

    That it doubles as a car-mount roof pad is neat as well. We've always just cut dense pliable foam into blocks, or in a pinch, used old torn up blankets for roof protection.

    (Not that the 19' I'm arranging will ride the same as my old fir strip did/does; it'll more likely need a trailer. The 'domino effect' of owning some types of sports equipment means that purchasing item 'a' requires the acquisition of items 'b,' 'c,' and 'd.' Wonder how many divorces are accelerated due to that pheonomenon??).

    I'm still sorting out aluminum pipe vendors in my quest for 'fabbing' larger pontoons. In the end, it's looking like it'll be a choice between fabricated aluminum from start to finish, fabricated thin-wall pipe (still tracking that one), medium-heavy pvc, fiberglassed foam with layers to hold 'L' brackets, or the larger pontoons advertised in the link I posted earlier.

    As each option runs into a snag, the process of elimination is pointing me in my likely course.

    Thanks for the ideas.

    ruffle

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    Did you finalize a solution to the canoe sponson's? I am seaching for a similar solution and read with interest your chat thread.

    Dwayne

  10. #10

    Default Here is another source for outriggers....


  11. #11

    Default stabilizer idea

    why not buy floats from a 1 man inflatable cateraft 8ft long very light and would increase capacity by at least 250 lbs? just an idea. probally less than $400 total.

  12. #12

    Default Not Bad

    SAMS, had a cataraft. Seems like you could just extend the deck poles to clear the canoe to the width you desire. Would increase your useable load A LOT.
    " Americans will never need the 2nd Amendment, until the government tries to take it away."

    On the road of life..... Pot holes keep things interesting !

  13. #13
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    Default Spring Creek I think makes the floats advertised by Wenonah, Cabelas etc

    I've used these on a friends canoe and they are very stable. I could lean right over flat with the water and I am 6'2" 250# and the canoe hardly went down at all.
    http://www.canoegear.com/catalog/home.php?cat=53

  14. #14
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    Default

    i think spring creek is from mt. iron minnesota

  15. #15

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    Grumman sells some as well...or at least used to. Aluminum bars w/closed cell foam floats about 3' long. They were quick on and off and stowed in the canoe for transit. Keep in mind this was ten years ago.

  16. #16
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    Default these also

    look easy and light and functional
    When you come to a fork in the trail, take it!

    Rentals for Canoes, Kayaks, Rafts, boats serving the Kenai canoe trail system and the Kenai river for over 15 years. www.alaskacanoetrips.com

  17. #17

    Default I have a pair of canoe training wheels I'll sell you.

    The pair of canoe out rigers that I have are in like new condition. I think they were made by either old town or grumman, They have a light weight aluminum frame and use 2, 8" dia closed cell PE foam sponsons. The whole thing weighs somewhere between 10-15 pounds the width is adjustable and they break down to store flat by removing 4 pins.

    I'll try to take a picture of them in the next few days and post it on here.

    See ya all at the boat show

    Good boating

    Jim King

    Alaska Series Inflatable Boats,
    Commercial quality at Wholesale prices
    River Rafts, Catarafts, Inflatable Kayaks,
    Inflatable Canoes, Inflatable Sport Boats,
    Inflatable Jet Boats, Tenders and Dinghies.
    WWW.alaskaseries.com
    (907)248-2900

  18. #18

    Default Would these work?

    There's a guy in Washington that makes these for $400, claims you can stand a 200 lb guy on one side and not take on water.
    Call George at 360-687-1109
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    Frank
    Alaska Wildrose Charters and Cabins
    www.wildroselodge.com

  19. #19
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    Default canoe stabilizers i found

    Hi,
    check this website out www.keywestpaddlesports.com they sell noce stabilizers for kayaks and canoes and are only $139. they can also be used with the brackets $15.00

  20. #20
    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default Easy to make

    I wanted a set of outriggers some years ago to haul bigger loads on a rough lake. I couldn't find anything but funky foam ones, so I bought an 8' length of 4" ABS along with 4 caps, 4-45s, and 4-4"-to-2" Ts; I also bought an 8' length of 2" ABS along with 2-45s. I cut the 4" into 2-3' lengths, and kept the rest for splices between fittings. I assembled from each end of these 3 foot lengths a 4 to 2 T, a short splice, a 45, a very short spice piece, then a cap. When done with these outriggers, I assembled the cross pieces of 2" with the 2- 45s on each end a splice, and then went into the Ts on the outrigger. I attached the whole apparatus to the thwarts with big hose clamps (which I had riveted to the cross pieces) and foam pipe insulation. You have to engineer the whole works so that, ideally, the outriggers aren't touching water unless the canoe is tilted. If I remember, 2" might be about right and would allow for loss of freeboard when the canoe is heavily loaded.

    These outriggers have quite a bit of floatation in and of themselves. But if you've ever seen the outriggers on Polynesian canoes, they are very small... it doesn't take a big honkin' mini boat to make a boat stable, you just want a resistance to rolling.

    I used to run my 17' Alumacraft square stern with a 6 horse Evercrude and a full load using this system. The only problem was water being thrown into the canoe from the spray, but some sort of spray sheild or sponson would work to minimize that problem.

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