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#662663 - 02/13/11 04:07 PM What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame?
The Catcherman Offline
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 06/24/99
Posts: 1246
Loc: Ellensburg, WA
Let's hear some descriptions and maybe even some pictures of your favorite design for a fishing raft or cataraft. Do you prefer a module system or a single piece frame? What essential equipment or accessories must you have? What do you feel isn't worth getting because of added weight or cost? No secret fishing spots being revealed here so don't be shy!
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#662670 - 02/13/11 05:33 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: The Catcherman]
McMahon Offline
Spawner

Registered: 05/27/08
Posts: 652
Loc: Bellingham/Socialistic Idaho
I don't have any design to give you since everyone has their own opinion on how things should be set up, but NRS has just about every frame part you might need.

I suppose it's all on how long of a float you're planning on taking. Do you want a dry box? How many people will you be taking? I guess my best advice would be to sit down and figure out what situation you'll be in the most and work around that.

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#662675 - 02/13/11 06:26 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: McMahon]
BossMan Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 09/20/01
Posts: 369
Loc: Seattle
I'll second the NRS system. I have one on my cataraft and its great. They are modualr and you can just order the pieces and build to suit your set up

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#662691 - 02/13/11 08:51 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: BossMan]
The Catcherman Offline
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 06/24/99
Posts: 1246
Loc: Ellensburg, WA
McMahon and Bossman,

That was the point. I know what I like but I want to see what others like and dislike and why. This was to start a discussion...NRS has great products and their customer service is fantastic. But when it comes down to it, their fishing frames are pretty simple. Of course you can add on all kinds of stuff to customize your boat, which leads us back to the question and why I posted it.
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#662698 - 02/13/11 09:23 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: The Catcherman]
McMahon Offline
Spawner

Registered: 05/27/08
Posts: 652
Loc: Bellingham/Socialistic Idaho
Don't worry about weight IMO. In the end, plus or minus a few pounds on a cat or raft doesn't mean squat. I like dry boxes even for day trips. I also like a cooler rack even on a day trip. If you haven't gotten a rower's seat yet, be sure to get the short back one.

The NRS fishing setup is pretty sweet with the platform, hip bar and swivel seat. Very comfortable. I don't know how it fits on a cat, though.

I wish I had some pictures of my setups, but I don't have at this point. I also wish I could help you more, and I can't think of a single piece that you MUST have. At this point if you can dream it and have some technical know-how you can make the rig that best suits you. If you've spent any time on the river you will have noticed by now that everyone has a different setup. Of course the dollar decides all of this in the end.

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#662709 - 02/13/11 09:56 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: McMahon]
BossMan Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 09/20/01
Posts: 369
Loc: Seattle
Ok, I here are some pics of mine. What I like are the two dry storage boxes, space for a cooler, the rower seat tackle trays, the two front seats on a slider (can remove one or both seats), the rear seat on a swivel, the side pull anchor system, and the motor mount.

http://www.photoworks.com/slideshow/album/A1EF5633AA98?c=pw59560&CS_003=4433951



Edited by BossMan (02/13/11 09:57 PM)

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#662713 - 02/13/11 10:32 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: BossMan]
Rag N Steel Offline
Feel Free to make small talk ;)

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 763
Loc: South MILF Hill
Shawn Mackey (Bad Cat River Boats)
He makes some awesome frames he can make them for a 1-man 9'
to a 16' 3-man, might be a little on the heavy side but they are SOLID, Also you can add on to his boats w/ any NRS clamp or weld more tubing in needed (cant don that on a Skookum wink ) here is a pic of my BadCat.
AWESOME Cats IMO
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#662716 - 02/13/11 10:38 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Rag N Steel]
The Catcherman Offline
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 06/24/99
Posts: 1246
Loc: Ellensburg, WA
Nice boat Rag (tempted to comment on the avatar but will hold my tongue banana)

Can you expand on your statement about the NRS clamp or being able to weld more tubing, unlike the Skookum?
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#662718 - 02/13/11 10:42 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: The Catcherman]
First Bite Offline
Juvenile at Sea

Registered: 06/17/99
Posts: 127
Loc: OR
Hey Dave

I like my three piece frame that breaks down easily. Definetly love the 22" tubes for clearance and 1500 pound weight capacity. A smooth straight pull through anchor system is nice. I added a transom plate for a Minn Kota Riptide...can run pretty much run all day with two batteries. Metal trays are next for small tackle items. A solid lean bar is a must too.



[img:center]http://app.onlinephotofiler.com/Img1/A_7...67-e198c5aabc5d[/img]
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#662750 - 02/14/11 01:38 AM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: The Catcherman]
Rag N Steel Offline
Feel Free to make small talk ;)

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 763
Loc: South MILF Hill
Originally Posted By: DaveD
Nice boat Rag (tempted to comment on the avatar but will hold my tongue banana)

Can you expand on your statement about the NRS clamp or being able to weld more tubing, unlike the Skookum?

Thanks the boat is rad but still need a lot done: cargo rack, whole new anchor system (F rope ratchets), padding on yoke/foot bar, trailer etc.

For the NRS clamps http://www.nrsweb.com/shop/product.asp?pfid=1215&pdeptid=1178
The frame is the same size tubing as nrs tubing and clamps adding other options would be easy

For welding (repair/add on) you can weld on the aluminum tubing as you cant on a skookum b/c its a galvanized steel.
Skookums are still rad boats


Edited by Rag N Steel (02/14/11 01:45 AM)
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#663347 - 02/15/11 11:09 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Rag N Steel]
Hunt4fish Offline
Egg

Registered: 02/15/11
Posts: 3
Howdy,
Long time lurker, just had to chime in on this post. I wanted to address Rags comment in regards to the inability to alter a galvanized steel frame. I have seen you say this a few times on this forum, you can indeed weld galvinized pipe or steel of any type. There is a gas given off by the process and care should be taken to not inhale this by product. The piping used by Skookum frames has an electro galvinzed coating applied to it at the factory. The frames are welded together in the same condition that you recieve them, if you look close the welds are "re-galvinized" with paint to make them match.

Anyway you can do anything you want and more to a steel frame then you can to a less structual aluminium frame (if you wanted to compare metals). Just my two cents, and hope this helps. I beilive allot of suppliers out there are feeding this line of bull to many potential buyers in an effort to gain there business.

Thanks allot,
H4F

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#663514 - 02/16/11 06:38 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Hunt4fish]
Hunt4fish Offline
Egg

Registered: 02/15/11
Posts: 3
I forgot to add the elements I beilive are essential for a good cataraft. First is good pontoons, skookum makes some of the best. Rag has skookum toons in the pic if I am not mistaken. Also a good 1 piece rowing seat is nice, it is not a good time to have the back of your seat break while halfway through a rapid set. Of course a good large floor is key for fishing. Motor mount for a small gas motor is nice for some situations. Oh yea and some good dry bags, deck mount bags for kayak's work great I have found. Along with rod holders and all the typical stuff.

Anyway thats my two cents.
Thanks,
H4F

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#663517 - 02/16/11 06:43 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Hunt4fish]
Driftfishnw Offline
Steelhead Hitman

Registered: 02/10/09
Posts: 2026
Skookum frames are the best IMHO....

Something about an aluminum frame makes me a little un easy when thinking about running them through heavy water...


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#663519 - 02/16/11 06:50 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Driftfishnw]
AP a.k.a. Kaiser D Offline
Hippie

Registered: 01/31/02
Posts: 4531
Loc: B'ham
We actually had to do some minor welding on our Skookum and the welds have held for years now. At the time, I also heard stories of "not being able to weld galvanized" but eventually was told just to watch out for the gases.

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#663522 - 02/16/11 06:55 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Driftfishnw]
stam Offline
Model Citizen, Zero Discipline!

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 12315
Loc: wherever I want to be...
Originally Posted By: Driftfishnw


Something about an aluminum frame makes me a little un easy when thinking about running them through heavy water...



the fact that aluminum is stronger and lighter than steel should ease your uneasiness.
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#663528 - 02/16/11 07:05 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: stam]
Driftfishnw Offline
Steelhead Hitman

Registered: 02/10/09
Posts: 2026
How many aluminum framed cars you work on stam?

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#663538 - 02/16/11 07:36 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: ]
deerlick Offline
Spawner

Registered: 12/30/08
Posts: 567
Loc: around
tony, galvanized frames are cheaper and easier for most to build, so i would imagine that has alot to do with why skookum and others tend to use galvanized steel tube. but why are the bumpers,under the plastic skins, on most new cars aluminum. there are quite a few aluminum subframes in cars also. the main reason they dont build aluminum frames is your car would cost alot more. also if i remember correctly airplanes are built out of aluminum......they seem pretty strong

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#663547 - 02/16/11 07:57 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Hunt4fish]
Rag N Steel Offline
Feel Free to make small talk ;)

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 763
Loc: South MILF Hill
Originally Posted By: Hunt4fish
skookum makes some of the best. Rag has skookum toons in the pic if I am not mistaken.


The tubes are Badcats. Shawn just didn't put the logo on them really similar to skookums if not the same. and -1 on gas moter on a toon
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#663552 - 02/16/11 08:04 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: Driftfishnw]
stam Offline
Model Citizen, Zero Discipline!

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 12315
Loc: wherever I want to be...
Originally Posted By: Driftfishnw
How many aluminum framed cars you work on stam?


Just as many as I have steel framed airplanes.
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#663561 - 02/16/11 08:31 PM Re: What is your best fishing raft/cataraft frame? [Re: stam]
The Catcherman Offline
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 06/24/99
Posts: 1246
Loc: Ellensburg, WA
Here is a bit more on the subject. Skookum hasn't built their pontoons for a long time and actually made only a very few compared to what they have used from Maxxon over the years. The Skookum owner actually built very little, (perhaps the floor boards?) on his boats. He got people to supply the components and put them together to provide a good boat at a decent price.

Bad Cat, I'm positive, also gets their pontoons from Maxxon. Maxxon provides excellent products for the money but they are vastly less money than the big whitewater names such as Sotar, Maravia, NRS, and like. But Maxxon pontoons are flatter, providing more footprint than the whitewater designed inflatables, which is probably better for fishing anyway.

Skookum had all their galvanized steel frames found on their good quality boats made by a guy who lives in North Bend. The aluminum frames that are powder coated are made overseas and not near the same quality as the steel frames. If you knew how much they paid for them, you'd never buy their Osprey model over the steel frame boat.

Aluminum is lighter than steel but more expensive, more difficult to work on, and can be more difficult to repair, and often requires a larger diameter tube than steel to get the same strength result, thereby negating its lighter properties over steel. I'd bet all my RVRFSHRS that the steel frames made by Ken (he offers a lifetime warranty) will still be going strong after the overseas aluminum frames on the Skookum Ospreys have bit the bullet.

Anyway I posted this question to see what people like and don't like in rafts and catarafts (acknowledging everybody is a little different) and I appreciate those who responded.


Edited by DaveD (02/16/11 08:53 PM)
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