Shark saves boaters' backs
Shark suspension seats from New Zealand offer a unique design to cushion wave impact.
Visitors to this year's Sydney International Boat Show may have seen the striking design of the Shark suspension seats being shown for the first time on the Sam Allen Wholesale stand.
Shark Seating is the brainchild of Paul Zwaan who began his design consultancy in 1996 with the aim of transforming businesses through ergonomic design. Software tools he developed in-house, such as BodyWorks, soon became the standard anatomical library used by designers with SolidWorks around the world.
There are now hundreds of successful products worldwide designed by Zwaan using these ergonomic aids. Clients include Disney, FFI (Norway), Southwest Airlines, Canon, and the NZ Navy, with award-winning seating for offices, ride-on vehicles, outdoor and marine seating.
In 2011, Shark won contracts for suspension seating in high-speed NZ Navy boats and Coastguard boats. Since then Shark has become the preferred supplier to America’s Cup chase-boats, high-speed tour-boats and fishing boats worldwide. These same designs scored highly in independent tests conducted at RAFCAM in the UK while performance testing at Canterbury University has shown a 20% improvement on suspensions previously considered the best available.
The Shark back-saving suspension technology for boat seats features only one moving part (the shock absorber) mounted to two rugged injection moulded leaf-springs which have 200mm of movement but without any of the sharp edges and pinch-points found on all other suspension types. And since waves don’t just pitch straight up or down, the unique Flex design is designed to absorb impacts in every direction.
The Shark jockey seat has a small footprint and light weight (only 3kg) but caters for all sizes of passenger and allows both sitting and standing without any need for mechanical adjustments. Using UV protected plastics with colour all the way through means there is nothing to rust or oxidise or peel.
Supplied in three options - Shark Flex, Flex Plus and Shark Ultra Plus – the seat systems are now available via the Sam Allen Wholesale dealer network at a fraction of the usual price thanks to the high-volume manufacturing and efficient design approach from Shark.