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Old 12-09-2013, 05:30 PM   #1
ceebsonline
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Hornbeck backrest questions...

Hey all... I've been looking into retrofitting my Hornbeck with a more comfortable backrest. There seems to be lots of options out there but I've read a few posts that mention using Crazy Creek Chairs for some additional back support. This seems like a more practical option, as the seat could be removed and used as a camp chair, but I don't know how functional the chair would be in the boat. Any thoughts or recommendations on the subject?
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Old 12-09-2013, 06:05 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ceebsonline View Post
Hey all... I've been looking into retrofitting my Hornbeck with a more comfortable backrest. There seems to be lots of options out there but I've read a few posts that mention using Crazy Creek Chairs for some additional back support. This seems like a more practical option, as the seat could be removed and used as a camp chair, but I don't know how functional the chair would be in the boat. Any thoughts or recommendations on the subject?
I've had good success with a lighter (inexpensive no-name brand) version of the CC chair to enhance the support of the installed backrest. Just something to ease the strain during long marathon paddling days when sitting so low with legs outstretched. More recently I have found the Wenonah Super Seat that I like a lot for very long days of marathon paddling in other canoes.
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Old 12-09-2013, 09:45 PM   #3
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I chose to buy the "Easyback" from Peter Hornbeck early this past summer. It made the seating much more comfortable without any retrofit to the existing setup.
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Old 12-10-2013, 09:40 AM   #4
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My dad made me borrow his easyback one day this fall, and WOW. That thing is great, makes the boat much more comfortable.
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Old 12-10-2013, 11:54 AM   #5
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"Easyback" , interesting, I have been using the backrest from the stern seat of my guideboat for a backrest in the little 12' geodesic canoe I built a couple years ago, same concept, and it is quite comfortable. I like the idea of the crazycreek chair also but wouldn't get me as high as I like to be in the boat, could always just set it on top of my regular seat, have to try that out next season.

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Old 12-10-2013, 01:27 PM   #6
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I have used the easyback with the crazy creek chairs...really is nice set up
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Old 12-11-2013, 08:16 AM   #7
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My soft comfy PFD......

Makes for a wonderful backrest in the Hornbeck blackjack new Trick, but I keep wondering what those arm holes are for.
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Old 12-11-2013, 08:47 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Potterdave View Post
Makes for a wonderful backrest in the Hornbeck blackjack new Trick, but I keep wondering what those arm holes are for.

I trust you have deliberately flipped and in the water put that PFD where it belongs..Not so easy eh?
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Old 12-12-2013, 03:35 PM   #9
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I asked the good people at Hornbeck about the Easyback and was told they have ceased making them (I don't know why) but are trying to come up with a new version.
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Old 12-12-2013, 08:14 PM   #10
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I regretted not buying an easybacker when I was at Petes shop. Since its such a long drive there, I just made my own. I picked up some oak strips and brass nails from my local lumber yard. I also used wood glue to hold it together, which I had on hand. Its a lot easier to be in the boat for long periods of time now.
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Old 12-12-2013, 09:34 PM   #11
nutmeg creeker
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Originally Posted by mphilli2 View Post
I asked the good people at Hornbeck about the Easyback and was told they have ceased making them (I don't know why) but are trying to come up with a new version.
I haven't checked out this link, but it seems to imply that the easyback is still being made. I assume that Peter was buying them from this source??
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Easy-...27968087237230
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Old 12-18-2013, 12:40 AM   #12
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Chair-back type backrests are fine for fishing and photography but poor performers for paddling, as they restrict torso rotation and chafe when paddling athletically. Yeah, they are fine on the beach, but not so much in the boat.
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Old 12-18-2013, 09:11 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by charlie wilson View Post
Chair-back type backrests are fine for fishing and photography but poor performers for paddling, as they restrict torso rotation and chafe when paddling athletically. Yeah, they are fine on the beach, but not so much in the boat.
Charlie, I completely agree for "traditional" configuration paddling - you don't want a big restricting chair up your back. But the OP asked about using such a backrest in a Hornbeck. I also worried about torso rotation when seeking a solution to back pain for long days on the water. In the Hornbeck configuration I use for such times (see photo in previous post), the chair backrest I have is a slimmed down version of a full size Crazy Creek style. It does not extend up to the shoulder blade level. There is no more restriction of torso rotation than there is from the stock Hornbeck backrest. Where the additional support helps is at the lower back, where many people experience fatigue and pain. I experience no limitations and no chafing at my sides, armpit, or shoulder level, and I use plenty of torso rotation without over rotating the correct paddle stroke. My normal double blade Hornbeck stroke is more high angle than low angle style.

In use I don't lean on the chair all the time, most often I paddle along fairly aggressively with a slight forward lean and don't or barely even touch the backrest, but there are times when it is definitely a pleasure to relieve some of the back strain while still on the move. The configuration you see in the photo took me 185 miles across the Adirondacks from well outside the blue line southwest to well outside the blueline northeast to Plattsburgh's Cumberland Head (including 62 miles of carries), covering on average 26 miles per day. At no time did I feel restricted or chafed by the chair. Of course as a bonus I also used it on the "beach", as a real pleasure to relax in while enjoying my evening meal.

Change gears... try paddling a canoe on the Yukon River for the 440 mile and 1000 mile races up there. I've paddled both races, twice on each of those races. The first leg of the YRQ (440 mile) is an absolute nonstop very athletic paddle taking no less than 21 hours to reach the first mandatory stop location. The 1000 mile is six days of 18 hour days of continuous paddling. Back pain can be a real issue for anyone. I used the even smaller cut down Wenonah Super Seat on those expeditions, although not leaning on the seat the majority of the time, but it sure is nice to lean back from time to time while still paddling hard for a bit of variety. A few minutes of a different position recharges the back muscles to last a lot longer. No chafing, no restriction of movement, just a different position for a bit of relief. It couldn't have slowed us too much, as in each of the four Yukon races we finished well up into the money.

So yeah, I agree that you don't want to rely on leaning back against anything when paddling athletically. But if you are prone to suffer from back pain and want a bit of relief from the strain, then find a low cut chair that fits. It can change your paddling life. I think this was the goal of the OP.
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