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PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:48 pm 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:25 pm
Posts: 2799
Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
Initial review of an Airhawk R-L motorcycle seat cushion in an Adventure kayak.

This 36cm wide x 33cm long seat pad is their premium model and has cut-outs for pressure points:
http://www.airhawk.com.au/product_detai ... duct_id=59

I have the last model of the Adventure kayak, pre the '15 Vantage seat upgrade and name change to Revo16. Prior to the Adventure I had an AI for about 8 years and often used it in kayak mode, travelling an hour each way to work twice a week.
Over the years I have tried different seats to improve comfort (more info- viewtopic.php?f=69&t=51971) :

-standard Hobie seat + inflatable I-Comfort pad (most comfortable base but uncomfortable back)
-Surf to Summit GTS Expedition (very comfortable base but uncomfortable back)
-Sea to Summit Cruiser (most comfortable wrap around back, great for sailing, but uncomfortable base)

My favourite combination ended up being the Cruiser seat combined with an I-Comfort pad.

Fitted with a non-slip base the Airhawk pad sits nicely on the Cruiser seat and stays put without straps. It comes with straps if needed.
Image


With cover removed the air cell technology and cut-outs can be seen. Note the cells are not fully inflated. This pad works best with very low pressure so you sit in the seat, only about 1/2” above the pad.
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The valve is non magnetic and appears to be stainless, but for protection I added a small plastic sleeve and a couple of O-rings.
Image

Results – For this review I went on my usual 10km course I've been paddling weekly for the last 8 months or so. The leisurely site seeing paddle takes me around two hours. I usually start getting uncomfortable after about 50 mins and need to stop and stretch after about an hour to relieve numbness and right leg pain.
Sitting on the Airhawk I ended up paddling for around 2 hours and pedalled for about 20 mins without stopping. I had no numbness or leg pain which is remarkable. Any twinges were cured by shifting slightly on the pad to a new pressure point.
I have done the same course sitting on the Vantage CT seat pedalling our '16 Oasis and the Airhawk was more comfortable. With the Vantage seat the adjust-ability is great and changing to a different position relieves numbness, but with this Airhawk seat a slight shifting on the base achieves the same result.
I was very impressed by the Airhawk. It is definitely the most comfortable seat base I have used. I'd have to agree with the majority of motor cycle reviewers who give it a big thumbs up, as well as this other kayak reviewer- http://www.ruggedreviews.com/Roho%20Cushion.html
At AUD $219 it's not cheap but what price comfort? It can easily be swapped to different seats and I will be trying it on top of the Vantage CT and even my car seat for those longer trips.

FWIW -I found the aussie distributor very unhelpful and he wouldn't recommend it for kayak use. Time will tell I suppose but the valve and zipper were non-magnetic and I will be carefully rinsing the seat whenever it contacts saltwater. I ended up getting it through my local Central Coast Motor Cycles shop. Phil there was very helpful.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2016 9:05 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2966
Location: Escondido
Stringy, great review and excellent pics as usual! Have you tried the i-comfort pad for comparison on the Vantage seat? It also stays in position without any anchoring and with about 1/2 bladder of air, makes a nice improvement over the factory seat bottom. -- sounds similar to the Airhawk, but barely raises the CG in the semi-inflated mode. Works a treat! (did I get that right? It's one of my favorite phrases from Down Under)! :mrgreen:

How would you compare the two? 8)


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2016 5:48 am 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Jul 11, 2016 4:39 pm
Posts: 4
Hi Stringy Hi Road Runner
I've been going all over the Sierras to different lakes since picking up a new 2016 Revo. The new seat is fantastic not that I ever had an issue with the 2006 yet this is even better. My third trip out I put in a 12 hour day with only a half hour shore break to stretch , eat lunch and grab an attorney by the back of the neck..(aka take a leak)
Two days ago after an 8 hour day ( late start) I noticed I could turn left on a dime but it took a whole dollar to turn right. I've looked all over online for tips to correct this and even how to remove the rudder handle without much luck. Do you two have any suggestions, on the old oasis it was easy, just a set screw then remove the handle, set the rudder straight then remount the handle and check the articulation to make sure the new handle position turned the rudder right and left with equal input on handle .
I thought I'd investigate first before making the correction but have drawn blanks , thanks in advance.
Kep

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I left my fish finder at home and boy was she pissed ! Image



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 10:40 pm 
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Hobie Approved Guru

Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2966
Location: Escondido
Kepnutzz wrote:
Two days ago after an 8 hour day ( late start) I noticed I could turn left on a dime but it took a whole dollar to turn right.
I like your illustration! Did you coin that? In any event, I can see that you've been shortchanged in the turning dept.

I adjust the rudder at the rudder, not the handle.
1. With the rudder down and locked, turn the handle (not the rudder) full left and full right. Note the difference in deflection.
2. If there is any slack on the deflection lines at the rudder (with the rudder down, locked and pointed straight back), loosen the Phillips head screw on the side of the rudder that has the least deflection and take up the slack. Turn the handle again left and right and see if there is still a difference in rudder deflection left and right. Just by making the line taut this will improve the responsiveness and tracking.
3. If your rudder needs further correction, you'll have to loosen one side and pick up the slack on the other side. It may take two or three tries. I use an adjustable bevel to eliminate guessing (looks like this):
Image

All those little half hitches on the rudder lines are just a bit of Marlin Spike seamanship -- a pretty way to clean up excess line. You can replace them when done -- or not.
You should be able to turn on a nickel in both directions when done. Just my 2 cents. :roll:

BTW, nice trip pics. 8)

PS. Stringy, sorry to hijack your post -- I was too lazy to start a new one. I wanted to also mention that the AirHawk seat Co is apparently made in the US. Here's a link that gives retail locations for anyone that is interested locally. http://www.airhawk.net/airhawk-products.aspx


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2016 10:54 pm 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:25 pm
Posts: 2799
Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
Sorry, been a bit 'forumed out' lately and only now catching up on posts.

Kep,
Great setup and top pics! You'll have a lot fun with that. I have nothing to add to Roadrunners rudder advice except to check that you are pulling the down line tight and cleating it? I know when I went from the old style rudder to the new I would often forget to cleat it down.

Roadrunner,
No worries.
Great rudder advice as usual.

Re the seatpads. We took your advice and tried the iComfort pads and the Airhawk on the Vantage seats in our Oasis and yes I agree, they do make the seats more comfortable. Thanks for the idea.

I've now had a few months more of testing and I can 'comfortably' say that for me the Airhawk is the best seat pad I have used.

Something about the separate support offered by the different shaped chambers that relieve presure points is more comfortable than the single cushion of the iComfort.

So in order of comfort:
1-Vantage with Airhawk
2-Sea to Summit Cruiser with Airhawk (a very close 2nd)
3-Vantage with iComfort
4-Vantage
5-Sea to Summit Cruiser with iComfort
6-Sea to Summit Cruiser
7-Hobie pre-Vantage seat.

So, for me, adding the Airhawk has lifted the comfort of the Cruiser seat almost to that of the Vantage seat. The Airhawk mesh also adds breathability to the Cruiser seat. The Vantage has the edge in back breathabilty and adjustability but the wrap around back of the Cruiser, which hugs like a harness, adds stability to kayaking, especially when sailing.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2016 9:09 pm 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Jul 11, 2016 4:39 pm
Posts: 4
I got the rudder sorted out readjusting the lines and it's been fine ever since. I've been hitting a lot of lakes and going fishing. Everything works well , having a blast .ImageImageImageImageImage


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 29, 2019 4:27 am 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Jan 15, 2018 7:33 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Port Philip Bay, Melbourne, Australia
Thanks for the Airhawk tip :) Was there any reason for the seat configuration you'd chosen? The medium cruiser and small cruiser pads would provide a broader seat area.

I've picked up an old Rev 13 and had forgotten how uncomfortable the seats were!!!!
To address it I've a curved back Captains seat that I'm considering customising to fit. But it would in all likely hood the result will be a higher seating profile, probably in the deepest part somewhere between 50mm to 75mm) which might impact on the COG.
Before I attack the Captain's seat this seems a strong potential for an alternative option.

loved the Airhawk description for our application;
"This product is made with clinically proven technology which mimics the properties of floating on water - without getting wet!" :)


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2019 7:09 pm 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:25 pm
Posts: 2799
Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
Hi Pneuma,
I chose the Cruiser R-L because it was the widest available at 36cm and I didn’t think it necessary to get the longer (but same width) Medium Cruiser which might be prone to collecting more water.
BTW- I’ve used this seat at least weekly since posting and it still looks brand new. It is expensive but it is made of premium materials that last well, even in saltwater.


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