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Something Unexpected Occurred...
Customer Rating: 4.5 of 5
Wayne in NH
I bought this to replace/install a missing bow seat in an old Old
Town Tripper. The primary feature I liked was the ability to sit
facing either forward or backward. The original Old Town seat is
contoured for facing forward only.
This Harmony seat was about 1" wider than where the original seat
was located in the canoe. Unless I wanted the front paddler to sit
another 6-9" further back, I had to cut it down to size. I was
initially very nervous about sacrificing strength by cutting off the
ends, but my fears were unfounded as the plastic roto mold
material turned out to be at least 3/16" thick everywhere, and up
to 1/4" thick in places. It's a similar material and thickness as used
on plastic 55 gallon drums, and I know how strong they need to be
to hold liquids and put up with rough handling by forktrucks.
I further cut into the bottom ends by about 2" with a hacksaw to
give my fingers room to hold washers and nuts, then drilled the
tops of the seat as far apart as possible (frontmost and rearmost to
minimize rocking), and mounted the seat using the same size
hardware (Harmony Yoke and Thwart Hardware Kit - Aluminum) as
I used for replacing the thwart and yoke. Opening up the bottom
ends made it a lot easier to drill since I only had one drill hole to
line up, and only one surface to secure to the canoe. This also
meant I didn't have to hunt for extra-long screws to accommodate
this fairly thick seat, and eliminated the question of how much the
seat can/will/should compress without working loose prematurely
or being crushed by the screws.
My family members are all under 200lbs, so I have no concerns
about strength even after cutting and trimming. I think it can still
handle a 250lb person without much trouble - the rest of the seat
construction is very sturdy and the plastic material is thicker than
the original Old Town plastic seat.
I would have given it 5 stars if there were better instructions, or if I
didn't have to cut it down to size and worry about its carrying
capacity. But as a DIY substitute it was perfect for me.
First, This is an excellent product. I like you can sit forward or
The dimensions provided are wholly inadequate so:
Bow seat: 31" at trailing edge. 28.5" at the leading edge by 9.5" by
2" thick. The drop is approx 2.25" so the seating surface will end up
about 2.25" below the underside of your gunnels.
Stern seat: 23" at trailing edge. 26.25" at the leading edge by 9.5"
by 2" thick. The drop is approx 2.25" so the seating surface will end
up about 2.25" below the underside of your gunnels.
I went to the local salvage yard and got some extruded aluminum.
You can probably get this at home depot. I used 5/8" c-channel. I
cut four pieces to 11" then hit it with a wire wheel to remove burrs.
I then drilled a hole about 1/2" from each end. I put the bolts down
through the gunnels and into the aluminum. The seat rests on
these like a saddle. This is very sturdy and was a very convenient
way to do it. This way I did not need to perforate the seats. If you
are going to use aluminum I would do it this way and not drill
through the seats because if you need to drill the seats and the
gunnels and the aluminum you may find your drill bit is too short. I
found this out the hard way and it was a major pain trying to line it
all up. Trust me on this one.
I suspect it would work completely well to just drill the gunnels and
seats and put fender washers under the seats. In that case you
may be able to get away with 4" finishing screws which are easier
to find. I am a bit heavy and wanted to be extra sure so I went
with the aluminum as above.
I used the harmony screws kit see my review.
Adapted nicely to an Old Town "Hunter".
Good product. Recommend.
Overall a good product; it
arrived on time and is sturdy
enough for rough canoe use
such as hunting. The seat
does not have a good
mounting option as it is sealed.
Just putting screws through
canoe into the seat did not
make it sturdy enough. The
only other option was to put
PVC boards under neath the
seats at the mounting points
for extra stability. I bolted
these into the canoe.