Pontoon Modifications

Discussion in 'Watercraft' started by Ed Call, Jan 28, 2009.

  1. Jerry Daschofsky

    Jerry Daschofsky Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,238
    Likes Received:
    2,092
    Location:
    Graham, WA, USA.
    Home Page:
    Have to agree with those above. You don't need the distance casting. What the boat is for in the first place. Get you closer to the spot without the cast.

    Onto standing up. Unless you have a flat hulled tubed boat, I would highly suggest NOT putting a platform on your boat. Even if you have it centered on the tubes, you'll find it's still not that stable. Just think of it as a rocking chair. Stand on top of one and center yourself. And no, having water surrounded the tubes doesn't make it more stable. Now, if it was surrounded by sand, yes, but water no. But try the chair technique on a hardwood (or tile, linoleum) floor. Now try adding casting to it. You'll see what I mean. I tried this YEARS ago. Didn't go well.
     
  2. troutangler

    troutangler Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Messages:
    113
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    S.E. WA
    Mumbles,

    Do whatever you want man, and have fun with it!:thumb:

    I doubt we can talk you out of it anyway.:rofl:

    Troutangler
     
  3. speyfisher

    speyfisher Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,326
    Likes Received:
    355
    Location:
    State of Jefferson U.S.A.
    I didn't mean to be a smart ass by suggesting working on your cast rather than working on your boat. I remember all too well the frustrations I had when I first tried to cast from one of those green canvas do-nut tubes. But to make a long story short, one of the things I learned along the way was that there is more to fly fishing than just firing out long casts.

    For example, work about ten or fifteen feet of intermediate line out, and troll along a weed bed in about three feet of water. Your fins are kicking up the sand and muck and fish food off the bottom. And the fish are following close behind. Real close.

    There are, of course, other times when you see signs of a fish working and want to be able to cover that fish from a distance. In most cases, keeping a low profile enables you to get closer & make a better presentation without spooking the fish.
     
  4. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    Messages:
    19,561
    Likes Received:
    4,564
    Location:
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Guys, guys, I'm not trying to be a dick or fuss about your advice. I specifically selected a wider quad bladder pontoon because the majority of my pontoon use is in still water. My recently passed along 8' round rockered boat was narrower, shorter and I'm sure I'll find far less stable than my new one. If casting platforms are so unsafe why are all the manufactures adding them to their boats? Outcast, Water Skeeter, Dave Scaddon all of them have ones with boats. I'm not the smartest guy around, that is for sure, but I'm neither totally stupid or careless.

    I did really dig the lawn chari on two strips of styrofoam though.
     
  5. Jerry Daschofsky

    Jerry Daschofsky Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,238
    Likes Received:
    2,092
    Location:
    Graham, WA, USA.
    Home Page:
    Mumbles, just because they add it doesn't mean they researched it well. They probably had enough requests and did a knee jerk response to add them. Some of the boats I've seen have alot flatter hulls. Can't attest to them all, but have seen a couple. Say it this way, had a 16' boat with three platforms, only really stable one was the center one, and that was a SIXTEEN foot boat. Now, drop that down to an 8 or 9' boat and you'll see what I mean. Chances are, if it has a standing platform built into the boat, the tubes are probably made for stability (hopefully). Now, if yours came without, I'd be cautious about adding one. And yes, I know some boats either come with or without platforms on the same tubes. But not all. Can think of NRS and I do believe SOTAR that have outfitter tubes and play tubes. One is virtually flat hulled, the other is a full or semi full rocker hull. But wider isn't where you get your stability. It's flatter along the hull (unless you meant the flatness between the tips is wider).
     
  6. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    Messages:
    19,561
    Likes Received:
    4,564
    Location:
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Jerry, this one is a Fish Cat Panther. Dual tunes on both sides with not much rocker. It likely will track well and be more stable than a fully rockered pontoon with 20 or more inches of tip rise. All I'm able to do is compare it to my 8' boat that I just sold. That one was a blast, handled great but had a lot of rocker. I've straddled that one's seat and cast (not recommended of course). I can't afford much more than that. I know the shape of the tubes with minimal rocker will present some shortcomings in the rivers but so far my fishing has been more in lakes so there is a trade off. I'm also told it tracks well in the rivers but will take a bit more line setup and will drift a bit slower. I'll have to deal with that too but I'm excited to get a bit larger boat that still will be managable. Not sure what all I'll do to it, if anything, but I have visions.
     
  7. Jim Speaker

    Jim Speaker Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Messages:
    2,240
    Likes Received:
    535
    Location:
    Mill Creek, WA
    Home Page:
    I like the idea of it, and considering your current schedule you could use the home project. Do the slider, man, you must be able to get something like the hardware in the seat of a car so you could just slide that sucker back and -click- to reveal your grip-tape laden casting deck that you plant your feet in and deliver that cast. There are plenty of times fishing stillwater that the hatch comes off and you really want the advantage that (we all know) the added height gives us. Do it man.
     
  8. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    Messages:
    19,561
    Likes Received:
    4,564
    Location:
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Precisely what I'm thinking of using Jim. Know any good auto yards where I can get a car seat slider cheap? I just have to make sure that the range of motion to the rear is enough to expose a nice standing area. I'm thinking some sort of deck material covered with a real non skid instead of just strips. I do have strips right now but that would be a temporary thing. Maybe some diamond plate covered with a textured surface (normally that diamond plate stuff is slippery when wet in my opinion).

    Hell, maybe I'll mount the whole freaking seat. (that I'm not serious about, but it could be cozy, slide forward, back, recline...maybe even heated for winter lake trips)
     
  9. Jim Speaker

    Jim Speaker Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Messages:
    2,240
    Likes Received:
    535
    Location:
    Mill Creek, WA
    Home Page:
    Ah, pleather and lake fishing... hehe.
     
  10. Frank R

    Frank R Member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2009
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Dearborn, Michigan
    I was thinking about something similar last summer when I came across an ad on Craigslist from a guy who was selling a couple of pontoons. The pictures explain it all. Note that he is sitting and not standing. I emailed the guy and he said he used them for years. He had done it to a 7 ft pontoon and a 9 ft pontoon and he recommended it only for the 9 ft.

    Covering the plywood with boat carpet would be an improvement.

    I have not tried this myself as I am awaiting delivery of my Northfork Madison.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    Messages:
    19,561
    Likes Received:
    4,564
    Location:
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Frank R, I have seen similar mods and have deduced that I like parts of several that I've seen. I saw one with a raised seat that made rowing or a motor the only practical mode of moving. I prefer a lower seat to allow myself to kick (fatty has to get some exercise). I saw one with a platform that pulled out from under the seat. That looked unstable and sketchy. I saw one with a platform that could be transported on the back then laid across the front and rest on the inside of the toons and atop the foot braces. That looked too cumbersome. I saw one with a hinged assembly on rear base of the seat that flipped up and rearward to expose a platform that basically formed the floor of the seat area. That appealed to me because of the ability to still kick, row or motor. What did not appeal to me was how the hell one would balance themselves while flipping that seat up and to the rear as they exit the seat and begin to use the platform. I resolved to find a way to make a platform that covers the seat base portion of the frame that allows the seat to slide to the rear (car seat or heavy duty drawer hinges) far enough to permit sliding back, then standing up without having to dance around the seat as it lifted. Right now that is what I'm thinking of. I totally agree that some sort of carpet or other traction aid must be on that deck for safety. My new boat is a 9'er so it just might work. I also like this idea because it puts my weight in same location as I would be if I were seated or standing, not standing on a normal casting platform in a location forward of the seated weight center of gravity. I have some heavy drawer hinges to try and will seek out a trashed vehicle for salvaging a seat slider. If I use the drawer hinges I have to bulid a locking mechanism into it to keep from sliding when not desired. The car slider works to do both if the range of motion is enough.
     
  12. Banzai

    Banzai FFing and VWs...Bugs & Bugs

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Messages:
    793
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    Bremerton, WA
    Mumbles,
    You've likely already considered this in your musings, but may I suggest that if adding a standing/casting platform to your craft you try to keep it close to the waterline. That is, closer to the center of buoyancy. This will enhance your stability. Consider kneeling in the bottom of a canoe vs standing on the gunwales. Drastic, but you get my point. This does in all probability complicate construction, but its an idea. On the sliding seat rails, check out the auto wrecking yard, Yank a Part, formerly known as Jim's on Stottlemeyer Rd. Should be able to score a seat in the $20 range. Give them a call for quote. FWIW, I used to own a Fishcat Cougar 8' quad tube (may no longer be in production) model I liked it a lot, but sold it to my fishing buddy to finance my 10' toon. More capacity for longer float trips like I'm planning for the upcoming Summer.
     
  13. Frank R

    Frank R Member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2009
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Dearborn, Michigan
    Mumbles,
    Have you considered having a hinged seat and a casting rail? You could pull yourself up and then flip the seat back. The rail would help with both getting up and staying up.

    If I do build a platform for my Madison then I am thinking about installing it with the casting rail in the up position.
     
  14. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    Messages:
    19,561
    Likes Received:
    4,564
    Location:
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Frank, I was considering the lean bar, but I'm not sure that I'm sold on one yet. I've heard some are pretty wobbly. After my boat is actually here I'll do some measuring and compare to casting bars available from outcast, north fork and water skeeter. They and others sell them. I'd like to check one out first though.

    Banzai...great info. I'll pick your brain about your Panther and maybe that longer float trip that WE'RE taking this summer!:beer2: isn't 400 pounds enough? My 8' boat was probably a 325 to 350 pound capacity, so I'm going up one notch. I've seen some killer deals on 10' to 11' boats though...but I'm wondering if I'd ever really put one to proper use.
     
  15. AndreD

    AndreD Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Chico, N Cali
    I have a 12' blackbear that has the standing platform that runs the length of the frame, about 60" or so, but isn't retractable. Its made for rowing only, no use of the fins. I haven't done this myself yet, but I want to make the front portion slide slide back to allow me to kick, although not sure how much effort is required to kick 12' tubes, btw, mine are pretty flat with just enough rocker at the ends and whitewater grade, like jerry d is talking about.

    Anyhow, not sure how that panther frame is built, but could you get 2 pieces of aluminum channel (like 6061, not the stuff from HD or lowes)long enough to cover the front area you want the casting deck and allow for the space when its stored under the seat and storage deck area? So like four to five feet for each side, mounted below the seat area maybe inline with your foot rest bars?? and mount his either by welding or fasteners. 1/2" marine ply should be strong enough between the width of your frame, but will definitely add weight. Alum diamond plate would be a little lighter, but more expensive. You could also consider marine flooring made from plastic composites, I think its called Starboard or something.

    The board should be cut to the length to cover the front portion and should be able to slide back in the channels to the rear when you want it out of the way. I would drill a few holes along the top of the channel and through the board on each side to use quick pins to keep it in place.