Cataraft Questions

Above invitation applies to me, as well. I'd recommend looking at these fittings vs. the speedrail Parts.htm
more $ but much better casting & come drilled w/pins. I have a source for pins @ $0.68 each (+S/H) for the 5/16" if you need those in any #. You should be able to get 6061 aluminium pipe for less than $3/l.f. for the 1-5/8" o.d. Remember to go with 6063 if you're bending it.
Something you want to consider is the type of tube design once you settle on a size. Rocker-vs flat. You're going to have a more responsive cat with a rockered tube like Sotar at the expense of less carrying capacity than the flatter design like the RMR.
Good luck and let us see it when done.


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Get an Aire and you'll have a good balance of rocker & flat for a super versatile cataraft... of course, I may be a little biased because I own two. One advantage to less rocker is a more stable boat and you can get away with shorter tubes. I floated a good few miles down the Rogue with a passenger on my 10ft cataraft using relatively flat and rocker-less Maxxon tubes. That would have nearly sank my 10ft Outcast (made by Aire) tubes. I have ridden on a cat with 12ft maxxon tubes and there was more than enough float for two people and the boat was small enough to go down tight rivers during low summer flows. Maybe not the best in whitewater, but great for fishing.
Does anyone have any experience with NRS Cool Cat Tubes?
Brett, they look pretty good and the price is good, but gotta question the warranty; only 1 year? My RMR's have a 5-year and most american stuff is 10. I'm no expert but Urethane coated nylon doesn't sound very typical. Check the denier/weight of tubes you're interested in.


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Urethane coated nylon is the standard for Sotar, Maravia. I suspect the NRS cool cat uses thinner urethane coating and it does not say whether it is welded or glued. 1yr warranty does not inspire me with much confidence, but NRS gear is generally good quality and the clearance prices on those tubes are AWESOME.
Thanks guys,

I don't think I like the 1 year warranty NRS provides. How about Maxxon? I'm looking at the Maxxon Extra Fat 14/25, and looks like a 5 year warranty. However, Maxxon doesn't have much of a "kicker"? Is that right "Kicker"? And Do I really need that? My wife and I want a 2 person, multi day Cataraft, and at most be running a class3 for now.

Question: And I'm guessing theres controversy on this topic, but, what is better, welded or glued?


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I don't think anyone would argue that glued PVC is better than welded PVC. Not sure why NRS only offers a 1 year warranty as I consider their stuff good quality. I would think many folks on here would prefer NRS pontoons with a 1 year warranty over Maxxon's 5 year warranty. That being said, Maxxon pontoons have been around for a long time and thousands have been sold with relatively few warranty issues. Bottom line, they do make a good pontoon at a good price, which is why we offer them on our standard boats. And I would have no problem relying on them for that trip of a lifetime as well as everyday use. However, the price difference between Maxxon and RMR is not to far off and if I were looking at a 14' boat, I would strongly consider spending a little more and getting the RMR pontoons.

The Maxxon 14' 25" pontoons are monsters. The 22 inch pontoons would more than suffice for most users in that class.

By kicker, do you mean rocker?
Oh, yep, I ment rocker. Still trying to get the proper terminology down.

Thank you for your time.

I have a little researching to do, but I'm sure I'll be back.


Active Member
I have 14ft, 26" Aire Lion tubes and they are HUUUUUGE. My boat is as wide as an 18ft raft. I'd stick with 22" tubes for fishing to keep the boat narrower for low flows. I think 13ftx22" tubes would make for the perfect 2 man (or 3 skinny dudes) fishing boat that has decent load capacity but is small enough for tight water.

You don't need much rocker if you are fishing and sticking to Class III or lower rivers so low-rocker tubes like RMR or Maxxon will work great for what you want to do.
You've got a great start with the advice here, but I'd also suggest trying to hook up with some locals or your local shop and rowing a few set ups before you plunk down your investment. Winter is coming, and unless you need to be on the water next week, time is on your side.


Active Member

We have several models you can come look at or even take for a row on a lake or even a river, depending on where you are at. No obligation whatsoever...just take a look at ideas, what you might like and what you don't.