The important measurments are to get the deck width the same as the actual deck (16.5") and the relation of the strap to the deck (height and distance in from the deck) IIRC, height is down 5" and in 10"
The North American masters site webmaster has drawings which used to be on his website. Perhaps they still are there.
Dick Tillman's books have drawings and directions for hiking benches. The North American Office used to stock Tillman's books and may still have a copy.
Meanwhile? Sit on a stool and lean back while you are using your computer.
SAILFIT has a Hiking Bench called the Quadzilla(TM). It was developed by Kurt Taulbee who has campaigned in the laser and teaches laser sailing along with myself who teaches fitness for the laser. You can check it out at www.sailfit.com. If you have any questions in your search for a bench just let us know and we'd be happy to help you.
the easiest and cheapest way to get a hiking bench, is go measure your laser, and build one. Its not hard, and took me only a couple of hours. I lost my measurements, but make sure to measure deck width, cockpit depth, the height of the hiking strap, and the distance from the deck to the hiking strap. I will try to take some pics of mine later.
I built mine from the plans in Dick Tillman's book (ISBN 0-07-135788-2) with a couple modifications. First, there's a board at the very "outboard" end that will hit your back if you lean back too far. In my design I turned it 90 degrees so it lays flat on the floor, and notched the 48" peices to fit. I also rounded the top corners of the long peices at that same joint. If you look at the diagram it should make sense. Secondly, I shortened the outboard vertical peices, the legs, by about an inch and a quarter to mimic the angle of a Laser sailing flat. I built the seat separately and mounted it with one bolt in each of the inboard legs so the seat lifts like a lid, and put removable pegs in the outboard legs that will fit into two different holes; a lower one to get the angle (which makes for a much harder workout) and the higher one to sit the seat level, which makes for an easier workout or a nice flat surface to put a beer while I'm watching TV. Finally, I made the whole thing out of 1x4 red oak and stained and varnished it. When I'm not working out it makes a damn handsome coffee table! I can post pictures if you want, but it's midnight and I'm going to bed.
I would love to see pictures. It sounds interesting, (attractive too!) and I'd like to "see" the dimensions. I use the bench on my pilates machine along with the footstrap, but I'm not sure I'm placing it in the best position.
But, wouldn't it be a nice winter-project for the Laserites here in the TLF-hood, that are automotive-enineers/-technicians and the electronic-hardware/-software specialists? Unluckily, I'm only a civil-engineer and knows all about designing and constructing in heavy-steel/-concrete materials... )
I think, it is also a nice project for the college students at a technical-course.
One protoype-simulator like that on that Australian-website, I think, is really very expensive. But, if produced on a line like our loved boatie, it is maybe available (from the costs) for a professional Laserfleet (on national-team level).
Like with the simple vehilces the pro-bikers use (they put their bike in a sort of small sawhorse with the aftwards-tyre) I can imagine a selfmade vehicle, where an old club-Laserhull (perhaps with a broken/unrepairable maststep) can be fixed in and some old e-engines from damaged cloth-driers and some antishock pads from the dump for cars and an old pentium1-pc plus some software can joined togehter in such a project.
Whats your opinion?
Harken used to make a hiking bench that had basically the part of a cockpit you sit on and the part where your feet go and a real strap and you can ajust the angle and things of it. my sailing center has one but it is really old.
I built it last winter by measuring off my laser. The dimensions should be pretty good, and it has a rounded edge on the deck, much like the laser. The hiking strap is an extra one for my boat. I also have a rope pulling on a bungee on a purchase system, acting like a mainsheet. If I want to tack, all I have to do is unclip the hook, and put it onto the other end of the hiking strap.
Following up on my November 30th post, here are the pictures. It is basically the same as the one in Tillman's book, with three changes. One: the board at the very "outboard" end is turned 90 degrees so it doesn't hit your back if you lean back too far, and I rounded the top corners of the long peices at that same joint. Two: the seat is adjustable by using a stationary pin on the inboard side, and a removable pin on the outboard side, so you can lower the outboard side by one inch, mimicking the angle of a Laser deck. When it's flat it is an easier workout, or you can use it as a table. Three: I cut a curve in to the board beneath the strap to make more room for my heels. The whole thing is made out of 1x4 red oak so it's really, really strong. The one thing I would do differently, and I might still add it to this one, would be to add a vertical piece of wood on the edge of the seat where the cockpit wall would be, and put a grabrail on it like the boat has. It would be helpful in pulling back up after a good hike.