Night Heron Hybrid - Hip Braces

The hip braces that came with my high deck Night Heron hybrid do not match in size or shape the braces illustrated on pg 47 of the construction manual (although they do look like the braces illustrated on pg 5, the kit parts). My confusion is that the installation pictured on that page (47), showing the braces extending from deck top to hull bottom cannot be made with those (braces) provided. My question then: should these braces be installed from the hull bottom to (perhaps) where the strip high deck meets the plywood hull top? Does this effect the attachment of the backband? By the by, the braces provided also do not have a "pre-drilled hole" as it says on pg 47 "the hole is the pilot hole for the backband attachment."

6 replies:

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RE: Night Heron Hybrid - Hip Braces

The NH standard braces are attached at the deck (underneath the deck) but do not reach all the way to the bottom. This is different from the Shearwater where the hip braces do indeed go from top to bottom.

The confusion is the result of the fact that a number of the pictures in the NH manual are actually of a Shearwater build. My manual actually made note of this somewhere.

I actually ended up not installing the standard hip braces on my NH Hybrid but instead used closed foam mini-cell and fashioned pads which are nicely secured in position with velcro.

I am very happy with this alternate solution.


RE: Night Heron Hybrid - Hip Braces

Chris... Thanks for your reply. I like your solution. Question, tho - did you epoxie wood cleats inside the cockpit to fasten the straps to the kit supplied back band or did you dispense with that item also and used closed cell foam as the seat back?

Bill C

RE: Night Heron Hybrid - Hip Braces

I epoxied pieces of wood (cleats if you will) into which I screwed the supplied back band straps which otherwise would have been attached to the hip braces.

In this blog entry there is a picture where you can clearly see the back band setup. I did not take pictures with the hip braces installed.

These fit directly under wooden blocks to which the straps are attached.

Hope this helps.


RE: Night Heron Hybrid - Hip Braces

Chris....Great set of pictures & words. Thanks, this is a big help. By the by, you have a beautiful craft. Mine will be more like a 50' kayak, i.e., it will look better at a distance of 50'!

RE: Night Heron Hybrid - Hip Braces

Thanks! My boat too looks better as viewed from afar. Let's say that I learned a lot about what not to do - or at least what I would not attempt to do again. So, obviously I have to build another boat to apply what's been learned. Right? I thought so!

I'm going to build the Shearwater Sport Hybrid for my wife. The kit arrived but I am still busy paddling and sailing, so it'll be a while before I get started.

Happy building! Keep us updated on your progress.


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