Bobcat?

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soundoftheseagull
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Bobcat?

Post by soundoftheseagull » Fri Oct 19, 2007 6:56 pm

Met some old friends today who have recently taken up paddling.
Glorious day.
One has purchased a Bobcat, it’s from Ebay, he doesn’t know a lot about the boat, I have done the usual Google search but there is very little coming up.
Anyone know anything about them?
Cheers.
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Dave

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al27
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Post by al27 » Fri Oct 19, 2007 7:22 pm

Its a SeaKing; next...

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soundoftheseagull
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Post by soundoftheseagull » Fri Oct 19, 2007 7:27 pm

Al
Thanks for that with your comms skills ever thought of going into sales :0)
Dave

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Post by al27 » Fri Oct 19, 2007 7:32 pm

My wife feels that its best that I work on my own in a shed; never thought much into that up till now....

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soundoftheseagull
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Post by soundoftheseagull » Fri Oct 19, 2007 8:24 pm

Al
Don,t start getting heavy with me now, we have only shared one posting.
Can I assume that its a boat from the States?
I also presume its fairly old?
Can I come into your shed and have a small sherry and talk about this!
Dave

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Jim
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Post by Jim » Fri Oct 19, 2007 9:01 pm

OK, that bow is distinctive, I recognised it in an instant from the first photo, before I'd even noticed the front hatch recess (Al is doing it a bit differently) or seen the second photo showing the chines!

For 5 or 6 years mine has been the only actual sea king I have known of or seen (know of plenty of moulds) and then suddenly they are everywhere!

It's a British design although where it was built is anybody's guess. The Henderson hatches suggest it is not that young though. Bobcat is presumably something the previous owner drove and thought looked cool on his/her boat?

Jim

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Post by soundoftheseagull » Fri Oct 19, 2007 9:07 pm

Jim
Thanks, the hatches are really different in as much as I noticed they screw on.
The kayak is in good condition although Ian who is new to sea kayaking has described it as wobbly, seems quiet high off the water.
Cheers again to all.
Dave

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Chris Bolton
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Post by Chris Bolton » Fri Oct 19, 2007 9:38 pm

Soundoftheseagull wrote:Ian who is new to sea kayaking has described it as wobbly
See

http://www.ukriversguidebook.co.uk/foru ... hp?t=29333

for another thread about a Sea King, and some discussion about the height of the seat

Chris

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Jim
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Post by Jim » Sat Oct 20, 2007 12:32 am

Have a blast in it yourself (I'm sure you will be seeing more of your old friends now common interest has emerged).

I don't know how the seat is, mine is as I got it ans still a one piece moulding as far as I can remember but I have never had problems with it. The boat has quite a deep V hull (unlike the NDK Greenlander which is much shallower) and initially, and especially unladen it does seem to act as a bit of a knife edge. The thing as that once it flops over to one side or the other and one of the faces of V becomes more flat on the water, it picks up great secondary stability. And when properly loaded it's much less noticeable.

If your pal can stump up for Valley hatches and has the knowhow to fit them in place of the Hendersons, it is a worthwhile improvement. At some point he will get off the water needing to liberate his lunch or a tent/shelter and find the screw impossible to undo and cold fingers just can't get enough grip on that knobbly edge to get enough purchase. Not entirely sure what causes this, it's probably a combination of the effect of the screw thread (which is effectively a massive wedge wrapped around a cylinder, and we have probably all managed to get a wedge stuck splitting a log or something?) , and an internal pressure change that pushes (or pulls) the thread tight against the opposing thread increasing the friction greatly.

Jim

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Post by MikeB » Sat Oct 20, 2007 10:17 am

Bobcat = especially evil and entertaining Land Rover based off-road racer as I recall.

Sea King - the first sea boat I ever paddled. Damn near put me off sea-kayaking, especially as the second one was an original N/kap. Stick some ballast in it if it's being paddled unloaded. Modern designs have moved on a bit of course, so that initial instability issue has been a bit refined.

As to the hatches, I'd agree. Put some Kajaksport or VCP's in. Then that'll be a nice enough boat.

Mike.

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Post by ChrisS » Sat Oct 20, 2007 12:29 pm

Image

A properly loaded Sea King

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Post by Jon Wood » Sat Oct 20, 2007 4:16 pm

A properly loaded Bobcat

Image

It seems to have a similar load carrying capacity to Jim's Sea King.

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Post by al27 » Sat Oct 20, 2007 7:11 pm

Dave,

A pint of sherry; now you're talking!! Of course, you're welcome down here any time.

Actually, I think there is a bit of a theme running in my posts, along the lines of reading them the day after and thinking "Hmmm, what a cock". I really must get round to apologising to people; probably starting with admin and working down.

Anyway, i did see this boat when it came up on the 'bay, and my immediate thought was that it was someone producing the seaking, being too lazy to change anything, and then selling it branded as the bobcat. Would be interesting to see what your mate thinks of it, as like Jim said, there's not a whole lot of them around; again mentioned, its quite a steep V (makes my anas acuta look positevely flat) which is good for speed, but not so good for initial stability. Not sure about the American thing; don't think there were a whole lot of boat from the states a decade or so ago??

Are you near the Wirrel, as we have to go back there for Crimbo, and much as I love the inlaws, two days is about as much as I can stand without wanting to dig out the shotgun; I'll have the boat this year, if anyones around....

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Post by Jim » Sat Oct 20, 2007 7:30 pm

MikeB wrote:Bobcat = especially evil and entertaining Land Rover based off-road racer as I recall.
That's a Bobtail, and it uses the 100 inch Range Rover (original) chassis and running gear as a base but with the rear overhang cut off (bobtailed) to improve the clearance angle at the back. Obviously everything else superfluous was ditched and a roll bar fitted. I think they are for trials rather than racing. I have no idea how they handle, but with a rover V8, a medium length chassis and not a lot of weight aside from the chassis and engine, they could be interesting.

Bobcat, as illustrated is a miniature front loader type thing.

Sea King - I don't reckon mine handles as you describe, but I think it reinforces the point of of try a boat before you buy it since one persons rock solid hull is another's tippy nightmare.

Al - there have always been sea kayaks in the states, it is perhaps only more recently that they started exporting them our way, but the sport must be about as old there as it is here. Kayaking itself has been there for longer than it's been a sport of course....

JIm

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Post by al27 » Sun Oct 21, 2007 8:46 am

Sorry Jim, when I said "from the states a decade ago" I probably should have been a bit more explicit and said "imported from the States a decade ago". I was aware they had boats in the 'States ;)

Cheers, Al.

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Post by soundoftheseagull » Sun Oct 21, 2007 10:21 am

Al
You’re on for the paddle; I’m about 30 mins from the Wirral and will hold you to that.
Comments you might assume that I take such as with life lightly, and yours made me smile.
Hopefully you like me saw the funny side; this site can get bit serious.
Well now I have learnt a bit more about the Seaking, seen the Bobcat or Bobtail digger.
Also, the old favourite about boys and toys and buying boats without trying them.
Ian seems ok in it at the moment but in fairness he has not been out in any choppy conditions, also he is a serious climber so there you go he’ll have no fear anyway!
Also forget the sherry I’ll share some decent French plonk with you.
Take care
Dave
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MikeB
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Post by MikeB » Sun Oct 21, 2007 11:06 am

Jim wrote:
MikeB wrote:Bobcat = especially evil and entertaining Land Rover based off-road racer as I recall.
That's a Bobtail, and it uses the 100 inch Range Rover (original) chassis and running gear as a base but with the rear overhang cut off (bobtailed) to improve the clearance angle at the back. Obviously everything else superfluous was ditched and a roll bar fitted. I think they are for trials rather than racing. I have no idea how they handle, but with a rover V8, a medium length chassis and not a lot of weight aside from the chassis and engine, they could be interesting.

Bobcat, as illustrated is a miniature front loader type thing.
Hmm - I stand corrected - I'm confusing my Bob's with my Tom's and My Wildcats! The Tomcat is a rather fun Landy based off roading toy.

However - the act of cutting the back off a Landy (bob-tailing it) merely creates a bob-tailed Rangy, Disco, Landy.

Mike.

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Post by Ceegee » Sun Oct 21, 2007 11:27 am

Jim wrote:
It's a British design although where it was built is anybody's guess
Jim, we talked about this some time back when I was researching this boat.

To my best recollection, the boat was designed as a club boat by Geoff Bent, a friend of mine from Norfolk, who built the plug. That would have been 1978/9. I never saw the finish mold/boats, only the plug. Geoff, if you're out there - comment?

The plug was sold/leased on to Trylon (in Northants I think) who commercialized it and ran a mold hire business. Don't know what happened to Trylons boat business (http://www.trylon.co.uk/), but by one means or another the molds ended up in the public domain, of which Al has one.

I STAND TO BE CORRECTED ON ALL OF THE ABOVE!!!

P.S. Al, great website, fantastic build quality and great to see an old British classic resurrected from obscurity. I definitely hope to become a customer, hopefully in the next year, time and finances permitting, and before you move to the next level and the boats become, ahem, "less affordable".

Cheers

Steve

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Post by steve-m » Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:33 pm

One of my paddling friends had a Bobcat sea boat for a while, he sold it a few months ago, could this be the same boat? I have a fairly feint photo of it by Ynys Dulas;

Image

It proved to be a good dependable boat, I think he used it on our trip from Mallaig up round the Crowlin, Raasay and Rona and back. It paddled fine but had a few drawbacks for him which eventually prompted a change of boat. The seat was none to comfy, the hatches were very small and made packing a tedious job, he is tall and needed more leg-room than the bulkhead permitted and, although it tracked pretty well, it had no skeg which proved a little limiting at times.
Steve-M Shropshire

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Post by Helen M » Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:50 pm

steve-m wrote: It proved to be a good dependable boat, I think he used it on our trip from Mallaig up round the Crowlin, Raasay and Rona and back. It paddled fine but had a few drawbacks for him which eventually prompted a change of boat. The seat was none to comfy, the hatches were very small and made packing a tedious job, he is tall and needed more leg-room than the bulkhead permitted and, although it tracked pretty well, it had no skeg which proved a little limiting at times.
OK - can identify! wrote a report!

http://www.ukseakayakguidebook.co.uk/mc ... risaig.htm

People still tell me that I'm lucky to be still sea paddling - given my first experiences.

H - x

ps - Sea King is sitting in my garage!

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Jim
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Post by Jim » Mon Oct 22, 2007 1:10 pm

Ceegee wrote:Jim wrote:
It's a British design although where it was built is anybody's guess
Jim, we talked about this some time back when I was researching this boat.

etc.
Yep, hence my comment, the moulds could have ended up absolutely anywhere and an individual boat could have been built by a kayaker with skill and understanding of the process, or a complete bodger.

Dave - The Sea King is great in rough seas, like all "tippy" boats. (?!?)

Steve-m - I'm not sure what all the drawbacks your friend found were, I know of a few but like my boat all the same! The hatches are tiny, and it can take me 30 minutes just to get my 5 season sleeping bag in at times. The bulkhead issue is a personal one, I have loads of space to mine and a 4" lump of foam further held off by half a BDH bottle - it'sa problem with all second hand custom sea kayaks, finding one that fits takes a while! The seat, yeah not the most comfy, mine has a layer of karrimat all over, but is at the as-built height so the stability issues must be relative because I am a few mm higher and have never had a problem. Also my backrest is not the greatest, I think it'sa perception one like my Corsica S used to have, but again this is entirely a personal outfitting issue. The bulkheads (original composite type) are prone to the seal breaking through flexure of the flat hull panels, Sikaflex seems to have cured this now, and flexible foam bulkheads glued in with sikaflex are reported to be fine. It is not all that easy to fill the hull efficiently whan loading cargo due to the chined shape - this is true of all chined boats, and I hate to think how much my boat would weight if I could fill every last space! Handling wise it can be a bit of a wet ride into a head sea, although my camera normally stops most of that, it tracks pretty well in a quartering sea but not like a boat with the skeg down. You will veer from side to side and have to paddle a wide zig-zagging course, the thing is that most of the times I have had to do that I have kept up with or outrun other boats better able to hold their line. Part of the reason for that is of course that it is a great boat in a following sea - it surfs really nicely and outruns most things going downwind. It is really sensitive to trim and windage so you have to be careful loading it, but once you have the hang of it, it is a great boat to paddle.

Mike - Yep you can bobtail any vehicle, my understanding is that 88's and 90's don't need it, old Rangy's do well with it and no one serious uses 109's and 110's for trialling. Discos and stuff would obviously need at least bobtailing :-) Of course I don't actually trial 4x4's, but I was helping a pal restore an old lightweight a while back - which is apparantly a favourite for trialling (axles are narrower than standard, making getting through gates easier).

Jim

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Post by StoneWeasel » Mon Oct 22, 2007 2:45 pm

MikeB wrote:
Jim wrote:
MikeB wrote:Bobcat = especially evil and entertaining Land Rover based off-road racer as I recall.
That's a Bobtail, and it uses the 100 inch Range Rover (original) chassis and running gear as a base but with the rear overhang cut off (bobtailed) to improve the clearance angle at the back. Obviously everything else superfluous was ditched and a roll bar fitted. I think they are for trials rather than racing. I have no idea how they handle, but with a rover V8, a medium length chassis and not a lot of weight aside from the chassis and engine, they could be interesting.

Bobcat, as illustrated is a miniature front loader type thing.
Hmm - I stand corrected - I'm confusing my Bob's with my Tom's and My Wildcats! The Tomcat is a rather fun Landy based off roading toy.

However - the act of cutting the back off a Landy (bob-tailing it) merely creates a bob-tailed Rangy, Disco, Landy.

Mike.
Bowler used to do a model called the Bobcat, it was the one that featured on Top Gear and caused Richard Hammond to declare himself a driving god. Old model now though, no longer produced.

Denzil

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Post by MikeB » Mon Oct 22, 2007 7:31 pm

StoneWeasel wrote: Bowler used to do a model called the Bobcat, it was the one that featured on Top Gear and caused Richard Hammond to declare himself a driving god. Old model now though, no longer produced.

Denzil
THANK you! Nice to know my memory IS ok after all!! Mike

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Post by al27 » Tue Oct 23, 2007 9:46 pm

Hi Steve (Ceegee),

Many thanks for the kind words; it DOES make a difference when you are trying to force yourself out of bed to go and light the boiler in a cold house (before even getting to the workshop)!! As I've probably said, I'm more than happy for anyone who knows what they're doing to come and knock a boat out; and if you've still got it, I'm definately still interested in your small boat mould. No rush though, as my eldest is only 3 and a half (although he can already drive the motorboat if I put a crate for him to stand on so he can see!).

And Dave; I have some excellent wine that has travelled all of 200 yards from next door. Do you like it in a bottle or a bucket?

Cheers, Al.

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Post by soundoftheseagull » Tue Oct 23, 2007 10:07 pm

Al
After a hard days paddling combined with some good French sausages, or a large bowl of muscles and chips me thinks I’ll have a bucket.
Sincere thanks to all I have certainly learnt a great deal about this boat and I will pass it onto the new owner.
Many thanks oh yes pass the bread please.
Dave

Rockpool GT

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