Aquabound shaft vs Werner Small Shaft

Does anyone have both a Werner small shaft paddle and an Aquabound paddle? I’m wondering how much bigger the Aquabound is. I’ve had a small shaft Werner in the last, and I liked it, but I’m now looking at an Aquabound Tango. The shafts feel very similar in size.

Just pick the one that feels comfortable.

I have a werner Ikleos and a aquabound whiskey, as to shaft size they are both the same.

Is the Ikleos a small shaft or a standard?

I believe it’s a standard size shaft. @Jyak is currently in possession of my paddle or I’d go measure the diameter for you I can however measure the Aquabound if you want.

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AB publishes their shaft sizes; do you have the Werner to measure? Frequently Asked Questions | Aqua-Bound – Aqua Bound

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No, I don’t have one now.

The Ikelos, GearLab and Kalliste are 1.25 (range between 1.17 and 1.27 inches). Back around 2007, I believe the Werner catalogue listed small, large, oval, straight and bent shafts.

I prefer the large size because a smaller shaft places greater pressure on a smaller area of your hand. A greater diameter would also be stiffe, and possibly a little heavier, but technically, the smaller diameter would have to be constructed with more material tp be the same stiffness. Small would probably be better for very small hands or children. Otherwise, stick to 1 1/4 inch shaft.


I took measurements on the Werner shafts when comparing them to Foxworx, shown below.


That sounds about right. Years ago, the brochures listed various measurements, but such details are hard to find today. The 1/4 inch difference sounds familiar.

@Curlymoe, I also found that page but didn’t drop down to find the chart. The link you posted above addressed two issues that many paddlers might find usefulI. I attached the shaft diameter chart because that info is hard to find:

Incidentally, the page also includes advice about how to troubleshoot a tight joint (the thought of sanding makes me cringe. Especially since it isn’t a common issue, and because both Wener and Aqua Bound are good at customer service). One advantage of buying from a local outfitter is customer service. Annapolis Canoe and Kayak took care of all coordination with Werner).

Most brands discuss paddle length in cm (10cm = 3.937 in), so for every 10cm, you change length by 4 inches, or 2 inches per side. Area of the blade is expressed in either cm2, sq in, or both. I’ve seen the same manufacturer use all three methods in different promotional literature.

I look for stiffness in a paddle (some paddlers prefer a little flex), but I believe the stiffness gives better control. If you want stiffness, the larger diameter should be able to provide it. Overall weight is important, but it’s over rated when you begin to chase ounces. Werner makes a lighter paddle than the Kalliste in the Ovation that weighs 18 oz, but they add a disclaimer that the weigh savings results in reduced strength and stiffness. That would be fine for a young paddler or one who doesn’t paddle aggresively, but if that’s the case, why pay $50 more to save 5 oz if you aren’t an aggressive paddler (paddle weight is typically based on the short model - my 250cm Kalliste is rated as 23 oz, but the actual weight is 27 oz which is the same listed rate as the 220cm Camano.


What are “major” and “minor” dimensions?

The sanding advice had me cringing, also. But if you read carefully, that was for a plastic ferrule which was replaced with a composite version in 2009. No further comments about lubrication/stickiness that I could find.

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The shafts are oval, so major and minor measurements reflect that.

Okay, I’m showing my mathematical lack here, but is the shaft round in the center, oval towards the blades? Then the larger number (major) is nearer the blades?

The area of the shaft where you place your hands is oval, to help your grip keep the paddle from rotating, round everywhere else. In ancient times, paddle makers used to mold a wedge on the left grip (I still have one of those) to achieve the same effect.

Is the major dimension the round or the oval?

One thing I’ll add. My wife and I started paddling over 12 years ago with Aquabound paddles with carbon shafts. We found the shafts to be quite rough on our hands, to the point where we always wore paddling gloves. After a couple of years we both switched to Werner Cyprus paddles that have very smooth shafts and we haven’t needed gloves since.

Nowadays we frequently paddle with cedar Greenland paddles that are super smooth, light and very buoyant, but we still use the Werners too.


I’ve heard that elsewhere about Aquabound paddles.

I grabbed this diagram online. The major diameter of the oval section is along line aa, and the minor diameter is along bb. The diameter of the round part toward the center is likely to be very close to the average of the major and minor diameters of the ovalized section.