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By Stephen Wright

After purchasing a used Maestro this summer, I was stuck without much
foam and a few extra Jackson Kayak bean back accessories to play with. The
classic way to get your squirt boat comfortable was to spend hours with a
sureform, glue, and mini-cell–often going back repeatedly to shave-off
those extra millimeters for a perfect fit. Well, the JK Sweet Cheeks and
Happy Feet have helped me eliminate the need for SOME of that foam work. It
also makes it possible for a MUCH better bulkhead than I’ve seen in a squirt
boat. Don’t worry, my feet are still squished (It’s now a really low chop),
but they are now supported perfectly so I don’t get foot cramps. I’m also
still using mini cell for hip pads, a back rest, and a suicide block. I
haven’t spent enough time shaping, so mine are fairly ghetto. I thought I’d
share a few easy steps to making your squirt boat (or any boat) more
comfortable with the Happy Feet and Sweet Cheeks.

Happy Feet:

Since your squirt boat is probably low on foot room, you’ll want to get a
size small Happy Feet. You’ll want to do some preliminary shaping before
you shove it into your boat, and I sometimes pull it out part way to put my
feet back into it each time I get in my boat–just so my feet always end-up
in the pockets. I do think that you can get MUCH better foot support and
comfort with the Happy Feet than you could with foam. The nylon even keeps
my bare feet from being ripped-up by the glass!

There are a few simple concepts to understand before you play with this toy:

The blow tube (which looks deceivingly like a float bag tube) controls the
shape and firmess of the bean bag. The pump bulb controls how much pressure
you get against your feet (where the bulkhead will be). 2. The beanbag
won’t feel right (it’ll feel squishy) until you suck all the air out of it
and seal it with the blow tube.

1. With the blow tube open, take your Happy feet and push the corners of
the beanbag in to make 2 pockets for your feet.

2. Actually push your feet into the pockets with most of the beans in
between your feet, making a wedge of beans between your feet, and with the
bag material around the outside of your feet. Suck all the air out to lock
it into that shape.

3. Begin to get into your boat, pushing the Happy Feet in front of your
feet. Open the valve again once you’re about 1/2 way in. This will allow
the bean bag to shape to your boat with your feet in it. Once in your boat,
suck the air back out of the Happy Feet to lock it in place.

4. Close the wheel on the pump bulb and pump to get some pressure if you
necessary. This will help keep your feet from sliding past your foot bumps
into the horrible area with even less room.

Sweet Cheeks:

The Sweet Cheeks should enable you to have the most comfortable seat
possible in your squirt boat–filling in all the area around your butt and
legs. The basic idea of the Sweet Cheeks is the same as the Happy Feet.
The idea is that you use the blow tube to allow you to shape the bean bag,
then suck the air out to make it solid in that shape. Since most squirt
boaters would like to be really low, it’s important to move most of the
beans out from under your butt and legs.

1. Stick the velcro strips to your hull all around where you want the Sweet
Cheeks to sit. And place the Sweet Cheeks in your boat. I’d recommend
positioning the Sweet Cheeks so that it ends about 4 inches behind your

2. Remove your back rest, and eventually re-trim the bottom inch or so, so
that it now rests on top of the Sweet Cheeks, instead of on the hull.

3. Blow some air into the tube so that you can push the beans around with
your hands. Push about 60 % of the beans back behind your butt, and push
the remaining beans in between where your legs will go (crotch-blockish),
and out around your hip-pads. Definitely be careful to make it as flat as
possible just under the fronts of your legs–you don’t want it to be any
tighter here. Suck the air back out to lock it in place.

4. Get into your boat, and blow some air back into the Sweet Cheeks with
you now sitting on it. Wiggle around, and reach around to move the beans so
that the shape is perfect for sitting comfortably. SUCK THE AIR BACK OUT
AND SEAL IT before you get out of your boat. You should never have to mess
with the shape again. I tuck the tube out of the way behind one of my
hip-pads, and put your backrest back in place.

I’ve been in my newly re-chopped boat several times with the JK outfitting,
and have been very pleased with the results. Jeremy Laucks and I re-chopped
my Maestro to a near-submarine cut in September. My feet don’t fall asleep
or get cramps, and my butt doesn’t get sore. Hopefully, this article helps
other squirtists get their boats as comfy as mine!

Live from Rock Island,

Stephen Wright


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My Maestro

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Happy Feet Step 2

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Happy Feet Step 3

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Sweet Cheeks Back View

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Sweet Cheeks Front View

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Sweet Cheeks in Position

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VERY happy feet

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VERY happy feet!

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One Comfy Squirt!