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Old 01-25-2012, 09:22 PM   #1
Grey-Jay
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Carbon paddle suggestions for pack canoes

Lightweight suggestions for paddles using a pack canoe for trips? I've got the foam core Werner carbon Cyprus for kayaking at 210, way too short for a pack canoe. Don't really need the foam core feature (good for rolling) for a pack canoe. Anyone like the Werner Camano or other brands? Even for the less common 11 foot narrower Carbon-Kevlar Hornbeck, a 240-260 length is really needed? Seems huge vs. my 210.
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Old 01-25-2012, 09:35 PM   #2
yellowcanoe
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I don't know the gunwale width but its more than my RapidFire. For the latter a 230 works fine. I use an Adventure Technology SL Tour paddle (carbon fiber). The light weight is a plus. I also use wooden paddles.. I have a handmade Aleut paddle that make RF fly but its not take apart and I have not done more than ten miles a day with it. The foam allows the paddle to be lighter yet still substantial and for me aids in reentry with paddle float.

Also the paddle length as you know depends on torso height and your preference for low and high angle strokes. I am making a guess on a 240 being fine. 260 is definitely overkill sitting on the bottom.
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:24 AM   #3
Rich Lockwood
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It depends

I used a 260 aquabound manta ray in my Savage River Wee Lassie and it was just right. This boat(as Hornbecks) has no tumbleholm which makes a longer paddle necessary due to interference with the gunnels. I have paddled a Placid Spitfire and noticed that a much shorter paddle would work on it due to it's tumbleholm.
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Old 01-26-2012, 10:54 AM   #4
charlie wilson
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Depends

There are a few factors determining optimal double blade paddle length for a pack canoe; rail width, seat height, torso height and stroke machanics.

Tumblehome, rails narrower than maximum hull width, allows use of a shorter paddle. Only Placid boatworks has tumblehomed pack canoes, but Bell cataloged a photoshoped model. Placid boats work best with 230 cm paddles , I use 220s, for most paddlers, but most other pack canoes need 240-260 cm sticks to reach the water across the high, wide , rails.

Seat height and torso height affect paddler reach across the rails. [Check out the pics in the "Kids in Pack Canoes" thread.] Lower seating indicates a longer paddle as does shorter torsos. The short waisted should eschew pack canoes with thin foam pad seats; they need higher seating. Long waisted folk in higher pack boat seats can get by with lower seats, shorter paddles and a more vertical and efficient forward stroke.

A vertical forward stroke has the paddle blade passing closer to the hull, induces less yaw, and is more efficient of our energy. Longer paddles are used at increasingly more horizontal angles. They cause more yaw and waste more breakfast calories in misdirection because each Forward Stroke is really a Sweep.

While no-one will win a race with the long, horizontal, paddle, it is worth noting that vertical strokes involve hoisting a quarter pint of water over ones head for each stroke - they are wet strokes, while horizontal strokes keep the dampness outside the rails.

Personally, I like and use AT's Exception OS and Werner's Kallista and Ikelos, all three with bent shafts. The smooth blade fairing of these capture less water on the blade; the bent shafts reduce wrist strain. They are kinda pricey, but well worth it to me, a technical-minded geezer. I wear rain pants in shoulder season[s].

It's important to discuss why carbon. Most folks use a horizontal stroke. They are holding the paddle in the air all day long, wi paddle weight is critical to fatigue. Note using a vertical stroke allows the blade to float the paddle weight and less expensive wooden shafts can be used. Another thing to consider is composition. We want the blades to be as light as possible, shaft weight is less important. Manufacturers using carbon tow in injection molded blades are being dishonest with themselves and with you.

For those tight little streams with overhanging alders the double stick has too wide a footprint, so I tote a 46" carbon 12 dg bent along. This stick needn't be carbon, as the blade floats the shaft, so nice wood bents should be considered; they certainly cost less. Fox Worx seems to have the bust buy; lowest price for workable stick position nailed down.

Last edited by charlie wilson; 01-27-2012 at 11:47 AM..
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Old 01-26-2012, 11:08 PM   #5
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Pack canoes for ponds, use a set of oars with oar locks, real easy to install, some times you have to get creative when installing, depends on the gunnels, good winter project, make a set of light weight oars and hardware..

Are you a fisherperson? Oars are the best, great control, the only way to go.

Creeks and Streams I would use a paddle, it depends on the water.
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Old 01-26-2012, 11:32 PM   #6
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When you want to get some where it's hard to beat a wing paddle, but it really only likes to go forward, no fancy stuff. On my wish list is an Epic mid/small. Presently I got a Brasca 4. I'm also gonna try out a single blade sometime in my RapidFire.
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Old 01-27-2012, 10:26 AM   #7
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I picked up the 230 cm Werner Kalliste neutral bent shaft paddle when I bought my Rapidfire. It seemed a little short because I was used to a 250 cm GreyOwl Tempest that I used with my 10.5' Lost Pond Boat. I little bit of adjustment on my part and the Kalliste works great with the Rapidfire. I should add that I'm 6'5" with a long torso so I really don't need a long paddle in the Rapidfire due to my height and the tumblehome. I haven't tried the Kalliste in the Lost Pond Boat (since I got the Rapidfire the Lost Pond Boat has been neglected) but I think the paddle would be too short due to the wider width of the LPB. The Kalliste is a GREAT low angle paddle! Can't wait for the water to open back up ; )
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Old 01-27-2012, 11:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spidennis View Post
When you want to get some where it's hard to beat a wing paddle, but it really only likes to go forward, no fancy stuff. On my wish list is an Epic mid/small. Presently I got a Brasca 4. I'm also gonna try out a single blade sometime in my RapidFire.
Fox Worx makes a nice short shafted paddle for pack canoes. My husband 6'2" was happy with it in the Nightmare in the Everglades. The channel is so narrow there is not enough room for two boats to pass . He used the 46 inch bent but I thought that he should be using a little longer paddle. (He was using my paddle).
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Old 02-04-2012, 05:38 PM   #9
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It seems that, other things being equal, for a 10.5 Hornbeck, the minimum paddle length that will keep the boat and the average paddler reasonably dry is 250cm. That implies low angle style, drip rings, and even then having an old piece of absorbent PakTowel spread out just ahead of you is a plus. That's what Pete and Simon say. That's my experience too. When you're sitting just a couple of inches off the bottom, dry is nice. Different case than with a hung or pedestal seat.
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