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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 6:38 pm 
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Ok, so I went to buy a 2015 Outback, but instead I got a steal on a brand new leftover 2013 model, but like most, I hated the old style seat. So I mounted a Jackson Silver Elite Seat on my Outback, and it's awesome (add a lumbar support, and you're great to go!) What you'll need: One silver Elite seat from Jackson kayak, on sale for $50! One set of Attwood Pole Light Storage Clips Model 7571L from Walmart for $5, and then some sort of stiffeners to mount inside of the sides of the brackets so they are sturdy enough to hold your weight. I used some 1/4" billet aluminum I had laying around, and cut it with a hacksaw and then shaped it with a bench grinder. A machine shop could easily make something for you inexpensively. The only other thing you need are a few bolts, nuts and washers to mount the Clips to the kayak and to bolt the stiffeners together on both sides of the clips, and a small (5-6 long") 1" piece of webbing to hold down the front of the seat (mounted underneath the lip and retaining screw of the center hatch.) It's a really clean setup, it's durable, it looks almost factory, adds almost no weight, is still low enough to easily use the rudder, is very stable and it's extremely comfortable! Here's a few pics, and the video where I originally got the idea on youtube. (thanks to Hoang for the video and original idea, I just improved so it actually works.) Oh, and I should note I'm 6'2" and 225lbs, so it will hold some weight! :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2dQxwUo1spU

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 12:23 pm 
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Location: So. Calif.
Very nice!
It might not hurt to add some sort of support blocks underneath the rear mounts
The angle to the pedals has changed but is still ok?

I wonder if this mod would be possible in a Revolution 13 or is it too narrow in the hip (seat) area?

Edit to the question if it will fit in a Revo: viewtopic.php?f=26&t=52666
It will, but it changes the c of g to an unacceptable height


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 12:33 pm 
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Thanks. Yes, I considered support blocks, but quite honestly, it doesn't need it. The mounts themselves are rubber, and the kayak plastic is very thick in that area due to reinforcement of the scuppers. I've been out in some pretty decent winds and waves (large, deep lake here) and have already logged many hours with this setup, and nothing is moving or flexing at all.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 12:36 pm 
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PS - yes, it did change the angle to the pedals, and for me it's much better - that was one of the reasons I wanted a different seat to begin with. I went from a 7 on the adjustment to a 4.

As far as a Revo, I don't know. If it fits in the seat well, it should work. As far as raising the center of gravity, it's still very stable in the Outback, and not at all like a lot of the conversions I see that have the seat sitting high up on blocks, so I think it would at least be worth a look. Find someone that has a Jackson kayak near you and just check it out before you purchase to see if it would fit.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 1:32 pm 
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dfrntsuthernguy,

Very nice! Just ordered two of the seats for out pair of Outbacks.

Thanks again!

Don


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 2:09 pm 
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Great Don - you'll have to let me know how that works out for you. I think you'll really like it!

Anthony


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 2:37 pm 
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Anthony,

Just curious if there is any problem reaching the steering lever? I have added the knob on top of the levers on our Outbacks.

I really think it will make a day out sailing my Outback even more comfortable!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/captdon/15159968497/

Don


Last edited by captdon01 on Tue Dec 09, 2014 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 2:38 pm 
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That looks like a nice solution, but I just wondering about the seat being elevated maybe 3 to 4". How do you now find the stability...as in the CG is now elevated?
Having owned an Outback previously, I know from experience how "tipsy" it could be, with the factory seat, that sat on the top-inside surface.

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Dr.SteelheadCatcher
Hood River, OR


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:39 pm 
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To answer both Don and Dr. Steelheadcatcher at once, the center of gravity isn't raised very high because you are only high enough to clear the old seatbed and the small back lip behind it, so no, the stability, in my opinion, isn't affected much at all, and no, you shouldn't have any problem reaching the rudder handle.

Hey Don, is it worth it to shell out almost $400 to put the sail kit on the Outback? I really want to try that, but a kid at one of my local dealers said the sail is too small, so it wasn't much fun and he didn't recommend it. Of course, he was all about the Adventure and TI, but I'd love to hear your opinion since you have a sail on your Outback!


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:50 pm 
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Anthony,

The Outback sails extremely well, much better than I expected. I have the turbo-fins, and you put the pedals together and the fins act like a dagger board. Goes to weather much better than I expected. Take a look at my link for the photos on how I set my Outback up for sailing:

viewtopic.php?f=32&t=52973

My installation was just more natural for me to pull the mainsheet from in front, not from behind me.

Don


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 4:41 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 19, 2013 11:48 pm
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Location: Missoula, Montana
When I'm kayaking, I want my butt to be as low as possible, to maximize the stability of the kayak. This opinion is based on 30 years of whitewater kayaking and kayak fishing. Looks to me like the Jackson Elite seat is 2"-3" higher than the factory Outback seat, which I suspect will make the Outback less stable. Before you buy a Jackson seat for your Outback, I suggest that you either borrow a Jackson seat and try it out, or put padding on top of your factory Outback seat to raise your butt up to the level of the gunwales and try it out.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 5:23 pm 
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Yes Pete, it would be good for people to do what you say and give it a try. But the Outback is a super stable kayak, not a whitewater sled. I assure you, it's very stable. I'm 6'2", 225 lbs, and I can stand, sit, move around, stand up paddle, etc., and I never feel like I'm about to dump out. I'm a really straight shooter, have nothing invested in someone choosing or not choosing to follow my advice, and I would honestly tell you if it made the kayak unstable in any way. But, because it worked so well for me, and did so at a reasonable cost, etc., I wanted to share so others could possibly enjoy it too, without the possible associated costs and disappointment of a lot of trial and error or selling their older outback to get a 2015 model just for a better seat - no need to re-invent the wheel if it's working well, right? But by all means, if you can, I would encourage anyone to find a Jackson seat to borrow and try before you go this route, because we are all different, and what works well for me, may not for you. I can only share what my experience has been, and then you can go from there.

And Don, thanks so much for sharing your Outback sailing experience. Come springtime, I may just have to give that a try!

~Anthony


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 6:08 pm 
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FYI, I've placed a piece of plywood across the gunnels on one of my Outbacks with a stadium seat that has a supported back, on the plywood, just to see the difference. I'm 250 Lb's and couldn't tell any noticeable difference in stability, and this trial probably placed me slightly higher than the "Elite-seat" will be. In fact, it was easier to get into, and off the kayak by being able to simply swing my feet over. The Outback's stability was the top reason why I chose the Outbacks over any of the other models.

Sure looking forward to the Elite-seats, been looking at a number of alternatives, including selling my Outbacks and buying two 2015 Outbacks. Living here in San Diego, I'll be able to check them out very soon after the seats arrive.

Don


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 12:03 am 
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Allow me to be a critic here for a few points based on the photos that were submitted: First look at the picture showing the seat from a view forward of the mirage pedals, as you can see the top of the seat pad is approximately even with the gunnels of the kayak. If you measure from the original seat that is an elevation of a minimum of 5 inches. To say that this elevation will not alter stability is not reasonable to me. In addition the individual is 6 foot 2 inches in height and states that he has no trouble reaching the rudder control handle, while I have no trouble with this if his arm length is 35 inches or longer, but any less and he would be leaning forward to be comfortable in steering the outback. I have tried this same setup with the Attwood clamps and I am 6 foot one inch and weigh 215 pounds with a 34 inch arm length and I couldn't reach rudder control comfortably without leaning forward and slightly to the left to reach it. I also found that the stability was fair in calm water found in rivers and bays but not stable in ocean swells. In addition it does invade the rear cargo area so storing the wheeled cart in their receiver holes would not be possible, so if you want to bring the cart with you a new position will be needed. He also states the mounts are rubber but the Attwood clips are plastic intended to hold a light bar, while he has reinforced the sides the real test is the clip portion which won't stand up in the long haul. Lastly when I placed the tie down front strap under the rim of the deck lid I found I had to use silicone on the rim on either side to retain water tight integrity. If Hobie thought this was the way to go, they would not have bothered to altered the upper side of the hull by lowering it to accommodate the new seat and if you noticed they made the rudder control arm easy to reach for all. In summary this is an inexpensive viable alternative for some but certainly not a perfect solution for all. I hope I did not offend anyone with this post as it was definitely not my intent!


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 4:07 am 
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Wow, Lameduck - why all of the negativity? I don't get it. I don't claim this is the perfect setup for everyone, or anyone, but it's perfect for me, especially for about $70 or so and my time. Hey, I saved $1300 over a 2015 by buying this kayak, so for me it was worth it to experiment and try different seats, etc., but if you want the factory designed seat, then by all means, go spend the $2300 and get the 2015 Outback. It's a really awesome yak and yes, it was designed from the inside up specifically for the new seat, so it should work great around all of the potential "issues" you brought up. But some people may not want to shell out that kind of money just for those changes if they are happy with their current Outback, so this is a potential option that might work great for some of them that aren't happy with their factory seat.

To reply to your comments/questions - I said the clips were "rubber" because that's what Attwood says on their site here: http://www.attwoodmarine.com/store/prod ... rage-Clips But yes, they seem more like plastic to me too, but I didn't do a chemical analysis to verify that. As far as their durability and wearing out, big freaking deal! $5 and I'll slap on some new ones! I haven't noticed any issues with leaking around the center hatch because I put the webbing under one screw, but hey, it could happen I guess. As far as the cart, I don't usually carry my cart with me in the kayak, but it still should fit just fine, except I would maybe have to lean the seatback forward a little bit. For the stability issue, I just don't get it! Damn, this is a freaking boat! I mean, you'd have to try hard to dump out of an Outback. If the waves are that severe, maybe you should rethink being in a kayak in those conditions period. Plus, you could easily keep the stock seat underneath if you wanted to switch to it. But I've had this thing in some decent waves, and never thought twice about the stability. I just don't get all of the "stability" issues and comments with this setup, at least on the Outback. Of course this isn't going to replace a 2015 Outback with the seat in the low position - I never claimed it would - but again, it's not like I'm about to fall out every time a decent sized wave hits my kayak! With the reaching the rudder, I don't really get that either. Yes, I do have long arms, but I have plenty of room to spare in reaching it. But yes, if you have short arms, maybe you wouldn't be able to reach it as easily as me. My gosh, I didn't know I was installing this seat for NASA, and had to be so precise in every little detail I posted here. I figured most have eyes and brains and could figure out if and how this would work for them and their usage/body, etc.

I think it's great for people to post their experiences or potential concerns over a project like this, so everyone can learn more about what may or may not work for them, but I really dislike that a couple of people on here have made remarks that, at the least, indirectly question my integrity - why would I lie about any of these things? I'm not selling this stuff, just trying to help some fellow kayakers enjoy their kayaks more. Wow, such hostility and negativity on here, like you're just looking to say something's wrong or bad about an idea that was shared FREELY! If you don't like it, don't try it, but please, don't kill the messenger! It makes me not want to share on here at all...


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