Overall pretty much out of the wrapper the Space Cadet outfitting itself doesn't need heaps thanks to the back band being so well done. The stiffness of the back band and the ratchet system allow it to be cranked down hard enough to actually hurt your back. I did do a mod to the shape of the boat though. After a few months of paddling the squished out volume starts to come back but its all good.
All of the pictures on this page may be enlarged by clicking them.
The hip pads that are included in the kit have a peel and stick surface. Do not peel off the whole thing. Just carefully cut out enough to expose the adhesive over the seat and on the top half just over the aluminum. This will allow the back band to slide through properly. These pads are nice but once you get the hang of loops you will want to pull the stock pads out and make your own tighter pads with a neoprene foam coating on them to keep you in the boat better when you loop.
Thigh pads to the outside are necessary with the additional pressure that you are putting on your lower body by cranking the back band tight.
Start with a roughly triangle shaped piece like what you see in the picture. Sit in the boat and trace around the outside edge with a heavy pen to determine where the pad will be placed.
The stock knee pads will mean that there is a ridge right where you are gluing the pad. You will have to cut a little extra material out to get more surface area to contact. Look at the close up pic to get an ideal how to cut to accommodate this ridge.
There are two schools of thought on crushing. 1.Chevy 2. Ford. I opted for GMC. Take your bow wall and foot block out. Make sure the deck of the boat is clean and place a clean shirt on it it avoid molding tire tracks into the boat. Roll a car up on to it as centered as possible and as close to the tip as possible. I chose to heat the boat AFTER rolling the tire up on it. It is the outside edges that require heating so give them your attention. Take care not to overheat. If the plastic gets shiny you need to back off because you are heating to fast. Heat evenly and allow to cool thoroughly before taking it out.
The result is the bow will be a little smaller than your feet but don't fret your foot block will fix that
Get your foot block pretty close to what you are after before you do your crushing. Cut the outside edges completely so your toes can curl around the edge you will only need to push off with your heels.
after crushing you can take a rasp and concave out the center to keep the bow as low volume as possible.
Over time the bow will start returning back to its larger size so be aware that your snug foot block will become looser over time to the point that it will require attention to not loose it while it is on your car.
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