Types of fishing boat seats?

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Fishing boat seats vary depending on the size of the boat and intended use. Seats must be designed for marine use and secured to the boat. Recreational fishing boats may have fighting chairs, while inshore boats use folding fishing seats or fixed benches. Freshwater boats rely on portable folding seats.

There are a wide variety of seats available for permanent or temporary installation on a fishing boat, depending on the size of the boat and the intended use of the seat. Small boats rely on built-in benches, but larger boats are sometimes equipped with portable seats that are secured to pedestals or storage compartments. Some fishing boat seats are geared toward luxury, built with heavily padded cushions, armrests, and cup holders; others are more utilitarian. In fact, a popular “seat” is more aptly described as a leaning post than a seat.

Fishing boat seats must be built for marine use and secured to the boat. Folding deck chairs, camping chairs, or regular household chairs should not be used for fishing from the deck of a boat because they are unstable and potentially dangerous to both the angler and the boat itself. Similarly, it is important that cushions and other upholstery on fishing boat seats are designed specifically for marine use due to the heavy use and exposure they are likely to receive. Marine cushions are also designed to float, whereas most domestic cushions will sink.

Fishing boats are often equipped with seats designed for fishing, as well as benches and seats for other purposes. The helmsman’s seat, for example, is a comfortable option for the person driving the boat. Padded benches are usually found in multiple locations throughout a fishing boat, and while it is certainly possible to sit on them while fishing, they are not designed for that purpose; that is, they do not provide the support, especially for the back, that is necessary to spend hours at a time fighting a fish.

Recreational fishing boats used for deep-sea sport fishing such as marlin, swordfish, tuna, and shark are often equipped with “fighting chairs,” specially designed fishing boat seats that swivel to allow fishermen change direction. They generally have footrests for anglers to rest their feet on while fighting a fish. Also, they are usually equipped with harnesses similar to car seat belts to restrain anglers and their fishing rods.

Boats that generally fish inshore for species like sole, bluefish, and striped bass do not need fighting chairs because the fish are often not large enough to drag an angler into the water. These boats use different types of seats. Folding fishing seats are very popular and resemble car bucket seats. They are secured to a pedestal or special seating hardware when in use, and can usually be removed and stowed away when not needed, providing more deck space. Party boats carrying dozens of passengers are often equipped only with fixed benches around the center cabin.

Another popular fishing boat seat is the swing seat. This portable seat is typically installed in a cooler or on-deck storage unit, and the back can be “rocked” in any direction. Coastal craft also use leaning posts, heavily padded rests that resemble the pommel horses used by gymnasts. They are secured to the deck by one or two pedestals that are often fitted with rod holders and cup holders. Some leaning poles can be fitted with seat backs so anglers can use them to sit or lean on.

Freshwater vessels like bass boats rely heavily on portable folding fishing boat seats. Some of these seats are height adjustable so they can be used as leaning seats or posts. Other freshwater boats with the traditional deck and rail structure usually have fixed benches installed, but may also have hardware installed to accommodate portable folding fishing boat seats.

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