Black paddle safety?

Carbon Fiber
The material in carbon fiber is black… you know, carbon… I have never see carbon fiber anything that was not black unless it was painted. Don’t paint my Werner Ikelos… I like it the way it is… but did add some SOLAS tape to it…

Ebay has reflectors
Search under paddle reflectors, I bought some of these, all paddles in my household now have these attacheded.


Asuming Invisibility
Good way to operate. Make sure its all good without others needing to see you. Then everything else is bonus.

Agree with every post above
hopeing this lands above mintjulips

I like Derek Hutchinson’s free with your

– Last Updated: Jan-17-07 5:20 AM EST –

penny candy sparkly stickers he puts on his paddles ...... and they work.

Dongetmestated on injection molded paddles with "Carbon Fiber " stickers on them. .

When things are 'that' close, if they don't see your boat they are not gonna ( want to) see your paddle.

Sorry Pay, you missed
"Closer than I care for" is different for different types of boats.

For the cigarette boats doing 30+ knots, it’s about 20 yards.

I absolutely agree that it is up to me to keep out of the way, and I operate that way.

Timing my crossings? Ok, mile-wide channel. Me doing 4 knots. Takes me 12ish minutes to cross.

Cig boat doing 30 knots. In that 12 minutes he has gone almost 7 miles. Please explain how I am to time a crossing to avoid a boat that is 7 miles away when I start to cross the channel. I don’t have a 7 mile straight line of sight.

One wave. Becasue it MIGHT register my presence. I do not count on this.

Then I do something to make sure that I will be out of the way.

Black paddles are cool. The odds are much lower for you on the water then they are when you are simply walking down the street/Sidewalk. Do you all rush out and Buy reflective safety patrol vests when you take your dog for a walk in the evening? And like folks said , they DO sell paddles that are not black that are decent, Spray paint them if you want, and spray paint your boat Fluorescent orange, and your car too so folks will see you!!! Fluorescent Lime Green would be an acceptable sub. What ever floats your boat really, but if you want to do a cost benefit analysis on how to be safer consider ALL the variables and odds. Being safe is great, but Kayaking in my book is an acceptably low risk. I would rather take an ACTIVE roll in my safety, Keep my head on a swivel, have lights handy at night, and be ready to evade and maneuver if I need to. Just another POV.


“Dongetmestated on injection molded paddles with ‘Carbon Fiber’ stickers on them.”

That sounds like your inner self just wanting someone to BEG you to turn loose with a rant on injection molded paddles. You know you want to do it. Go ahead and let 'er rip. Consider the issue of those “Carbon Fiber” stickers as if it were just icing on the cake.



“Dongetmestated on injection molded paddles with ‘Carbon Fiber’ stickers on them.”

That sounds like your inner self just wanting someone to BEG you to turn loose with a rant on injection molded paddles. You know you want to do it. Go ahead and let 'er rip. Consider the issue of those “Carbon Fiber” stickers as if it were just icing on the cake.


GP paddlers = power boat bait
• black PFD

• low/no profile boat

• light/radar-absorbant stealth tulik de rigeur

My three rules for avoiding collisions

– Last Updated: Jan-17-07 12:15 PM EST –

#1 I stay constantly aware of my surroundings. Like, garyr said, keep your head swiveling!

#2 I make sure I'm not between another boat and the sun. You are a lot more visible than you might think, unless you are in the sun-glare on the water.

#3 If I'm observing a boat that is headed toward me and is not changing course, I immediately turn full broadside and stop paddling. This serves two purposes. First, I become a 19 foot object instead of a 22 inch object. Second, I can paddle at a 90 degree angle to the oncoming boat, which will get me out of collision path as quickly as possible.

ooops! almost forgot #4

#4 always wear oversized foam cowboy hat

Carbon filled N12…
… come on Pat, you know you want to! We all love a good rant - particularly a well informed one.

Come on - is it really such bad stuff? Sure it ain’t all pretty and well crafted like your blades - but cheap and durable has a place too, right? Can you really blame people for taking advantage of the marketing value of “Carbon” or “Carbon fiber”…

What about glass filled nylon?

Come on… Anything beats another Pamlico thread!

"reflective safety patrol vests"
I wish some pedestrians would! See them on cyclists and runners sometimes and it makes a huge difference.

Completely off topic though, as boats don’t have headlights - so reflective tape is another thing that’s overrated on water (but handy to find stuff on shore with a flashlight, or while that helo is hovering over you… relatively close range directed light source situations).

Well, they ARE getting some longer
length c-fibers in there now. Still not worth the cost of the sticker.

Have a several hundred word rant in my pocket right now.

When I am running across a (busy) freeway, I don’t stop to wave.

boy is pahs going to be pissed
when he finds out you stole his hat


definitely an interesting conversation
Interesting to see this, but I must say that padding defensively and having gear that lets you more easily be seen are not mutually exclusive. I do both.

That said - my opinion is that if you are going to drop a few bills on a paddle, may also be worth buying the best reflectors. The stuff that seems to be the best is stuff labeled as SOLAS (stands for Safety Of Life At Sea).

The stuff is not cheap - about $2 a foot for 2" wide tape. But it sure reflects. I have some on my paddles, and also on my PFD and on the boat.

About the cheapest I could find was through LandFall Navigation - And they have an online coupon you can use also -

get a flourescent orange hunting cap
you’ll be noticed

Reminds me of a Motorcycle study
When I was really into Motorcycles, I read a report concerning motorcycle accidents, and the color of the cycle, and the color of the jacket the person was wearing.

The greatest percentage of accidents were with people wearing dark colored jackets. It didn’t matter what color the cycle was.

What mattered the most was the color of the jacket the person on the cycle was wearing. That is what was seen first. The group with the least accidents had the brightest color jackets on.

When you are in a kayak, even the smallest wave action will hide the color of the deck, as seen from the side. From a distance, the paddle blades look very small.

My humble opinion, and I have noticed this before on other kayakers, the most noticed thing on the person is the bright color of the shirt they are wearing, and the bright color of their life jacket.

Watch this for yourself the next time you are on large enough water for a motorboat, with a little breeze wave action.

Stay Safe!

They should be fine
as long as they stay out of South Boston or Eastern Montana.