A Seat that Works for Margot

Margot is troubled by sciatica. We tried several alternatives to the bare floorboards. These incuded a simple foam pad, an inflatable pad and a seat pad from an another commercial kayak (don't remember which). Earlier we had spent a couple of days in an Eddyline Whisper on Lake Ross, WA where the sciatca did not show up, so Margot thought a plain fiberglass seat with the right shape might work. The Whisper had a molded seat with no padding.

I have some skills with fiberglass, so she took a block of buoyancy foam and carved a seat that she thought had the right shape. Buoyancy foam is very easy to shape with a wire brush. By the time I shaped the bottom to fit the Sea Tour floor the bottom of the seat was only about 1/4" above the floorboards. I took the resulting block of foam and glassed it. I used 6 oz. boat cloth, 2 plys on the top and 1 ply on the bottom and sides.West System epoxy with carbon filler.

Yesterday we went for an approximately 7 mile paddle (flat water) and the sciatica did not show up. So maybe we are on the right track. Here are some pictures.

Update 9/14/2010.
It turns out the shape is not right yet. I should have kept it in foam a little longer. I neglected to shape the bottom of the foam billet to fit the floorboards, so it broke apart when Margot was testing the shape. Margot thought it was right, so I stuck it back together with microslurry and glassed it. I think if I had shaped the bottom to the floorboards the foam billet would have stayed in one piece and Margot could have used it longer in raw foam.

So my plan is to dremel out the offending area and build it back up with foam-in-place. Maybe minicell is a better idea. TBD.


seat in place

Velcro to anchor the seat.

velco details