SEA-DOG’s new pivoting pedal foot brace system is designed with the same strength and stiffness as our adjustable
foot brace version, which has been an industry standard retro-fit for years. By using the same track, adjustment rods and clamps it is now easier then ever to adjust the pivoting pedals from the cockpit.
You will need to measure the foot braces to ascertain the distance between the thru hull mounts. Drill two --¼” holes for each foot brace to fit the screws provided with the foot braces. There are plastic washers included, so you only need to drill holes, set the braces in place and tighten the nuts.
As for placement, that will be determined by the individual boat—how much space you have for installation, whether you want the braces up on the inside sides or father down. Set them inside the boat and get inside, and just see what you think. You will need to be able to reach the adjustment lever with some degree of ease while paddling in case you want more or less knee room. NOTE:
There is a left and a right footbrace - they are marked with "L" and "R" on the adjustment rod lever.
These instruction will also work for wooden boats if you decide on thru hull, but we recommend using the glue on stud mount for wooden boats. No holes to seal!
Up until just a few years ago, I had never even tried kayaking, let alone thought that I could be good at it. A few Girl Scout camps and one amazing kayak instructor later, my very first kayak was bought and paid for. However, the boat needed a few adjustments. My biggest concern was the original rudder system; although I’d never had a rudder before, I loved the way my boat could turn on a dime and follow my every command as if we were capable of being the perfect team.
My new kayak’s sliding rudder control system was more awkward than convenient, with my main concern being the lack of control found when I was forced to move my entire lower body simply to turn the rudder. Without my legs being stationary, turning with the rudder seemed awkward and I actually preferred not to use it at all.
Then one day, my supportive kayak mentor came forward with an entirely new rudder control system. I now definitely prefer the toe pedal system to the sliding rudder controls. I find that my boat turns faster with just a touch from each foot to entice my rudder to move. I’m once again connected with my kayak through all the points of contact that I need to feel in control with, and the ability to utilize my rudder has almost become second nature to me without the awkwardness of unnecessary leg movements. To borrow a well-known quote, “I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”
Pete Sommers installed a pair of rudder
control footbraces with glue on studs:
Chuck, as promised here is a picture of my installation of the foot pedals I purchased from you in November. The rudder pedals are right side up which is different from the picture on your web page (see below).
Chris Rowan bought a pair of these footbraces and sent us the following:
The new pivoting foot braces give me a solid brace to push against while giving me total directional control. All I had to do was push down with my left heel, and that's where the kayak turned. Push down with my right heel, and the kayak "heeled" right. I felt a lot more stable in my kayak with the pivoting braces, that's for sure. But what really saved me was the energy I conserved as a result of having a solid brace to push against.
Here is a picture of Chris' installation. He chose to mount them "upside down" from the conventional but as you can tell from his letter, it worked for him.
Without a solid brace, I had to rely almost exclusively on my arm, shoulder, and abdominal muscles to paddle anywhere. I used the "squishy" braces (that came with the boat) a few weeks ago to paddle across the bay from Padre Island to Port Isabel (a trip I have made many, many times before in my little Pelican Pursuit kayak) and ran out of energy when I was only halfway across.
I've been paddling kayaks for several years now and have been in some hairy situations, but that was the first time I was really scared. I didn't think I was going to make it back. It was probably unreasonable for me to be so concerned. After all, I was in the bay and here were motor-boaters buzzing by all the time. But the realization that I might not be able to make it back on my own was unnerving, to say the least. And to top it off, I overextended the tendons and ligaments that connect my elbow to my forearm and was in considerable pain for a couple of weeks.
Anyway, with solid foot braces I was able to use my leg muscles to "pull" the kayak through the water and could relax my arm, shoulder, and abdominal muscles considerably.
Curt Gashlin sent the following letters over a few weeks time:
Wow…I received the foot controls on Saturday. This was faster than anything I ever had shipped. Thanks. Well, I have a problem. I spent Saturday afternoon looking to install them. It seems that perception has done all they can to make sure that upgrades can not occur on their boats. I put it in where they go and the top would not clear the deck and the recessed fittings. I have a vertical adjustment plate from a smart track and tried it. the curve in the hull made it so that the pully lever would hit the side of the boat. Also the vertical adjustment plate is flimsy and less solid than cables in my boat. I would have to invent a way to install these to make them work and I just am not that ambitious.
Do you have a return policy?
Thanks for all your help,
I saw a picture online where someone installed their pedals upside down. It appears to have been done for the same reason I can’t get mine in right side up. It almost looks like it would be more natural upside down. Anyway, this weekend I will look and see if they will even fit in my hull upside down. I would really like to get them to work. I put a smart track toe pilot in and can’t stand it.
I got them in. I used the vertical plate from a smart track. I still need to make one from aluminum as the nylon smart track version is junk. But it does the job and the sea dogs feel great. Here are some pics of my installation.
click images above for larger views
I have size 8 feet so the pedals need to be low enough for a comfortable pivot and I had restraints with the low volume and hull shape of the boat. Its all good this way. The angle of the pedals are at the same angle my feet are at in this boat. A redesigned vertical plate would make them straight if needed. I may do that after I work with this setup for a while.
The springs I used in the back of the pedals don’t do anything except keep the pedals from falling forward. It’s a luxury not a necessity.
The stainless steel links are for changing the angle of the pedal if desired and still fine tune with the adjustment screw. I love these things… they feel wayyyyy better than the toe pilots.
Also, I tried them upside down. Just did not like that at all. After I make my new plate I will get more for one of my other kayaks and put the one I just installed in it and the new ones with my aluminum plate in my eclipse.