How to shorten a paddle?

I have a 240 Whetstone paddle which I bought for my SOT. The SOT is collecting dust since I got my Tempest. Although I am 6’5" I find the paddle to long now. I’d like to know the best way to shorten it by 10 to 12 cms. What tools will I need and what adhesive will do the job best?

Hard to to without kit

– Last Updated: Jan-15-04 2:55 PM EST –

I hope you get better answers than mine! I am far from expert on this subject but here is my take.

Without a kit fron the specific paddle manufacturer it might be very hard to do. You need to get a tube of glass or carbon fiber that has an outside diameter which will serve as a ferrule to the inside of the shaft you already have. The manufacturer was in the best position to supply this, but with whetstone..... If your paddle is in good shape you could pass it down to a beginner for $120 or so and move on. I do understand that it is hard to part with one of their fine paddles, they represented a great value for non-racers.

My paddle has adjustable length fron 215-225 and serves me fron my 29.5 inch rec boat, to my explorer, (I will not be able to get into anything much narrower all that soon).

I thought I’d
be able to use heat and remove the blades from the shaft. With the blades off I thought I could cut down the shaft outer ends and then re-glue the blades back on. What I don’t know is how much heat I can apply, what to cut the shaft with for clean splinter-free ends and what glue to use to re-apply the blades.

It’s not that hard, Peter
You simply cut 10-12cm off the female end and re-drill the holes. The ferrule will be off-center, but it doesn’t affect the performance. I’ve posted instructions here before, but I can’t seem to find them.

Regardless, here’s the basic procedure:

  • Wrap the shaft with masking tape where you plan cut it and where the new holes will be.

  • Extend lines from the edges of the original holes to the area where the new holes will be. This is easiest if you use a V-shaped straight edge.

  • Carefully measure the distance from the inside edge of the old hole to the end of the shaft and write it down. Repeat for the outside edge.

  • Using a drafting compass, mark the cut line on the shaft.

  • Cut the shaft with a fine-tooth hacksaw, band saw or what have you. Make sure the end is square.

  • Lightly round the cut edge with sandpaper, a file or a whetstone.

  • Using a drafting compass again, mark that distances you measure for the hole(s) on the shaft. This should create drawn squares where the four lines for each hole meet.

  • Drill the holes slightly undersize.

  • Fine tune the size and position of the hole(s) with drill bits, sandpaper, etc. until you have a perfect fit.

Yeah good to know.
Hey Scubagunner are you working fron a two piece or one piece? Folks can help you more if you can tell 'em

Well since an earnest replied has been
laid, this one time, while paddlin on the Savannah river, my brotherman snapped his grey owl paddle paddlin up a class II rapid. one of the most audible, authentic sounds-very little confusion as to what happened when i turned to look at him. oh, the oar ride home.

Is it possible to turn a blade?
I have an “Epic Midwing Full Carbon”. It came in a 3 piece kit. I used an apoxy cement to bond the blade to the shaft. I now would like to add more feather.

I would guess that once this type of bonding takes place it is permanent. Even if I cut the shaft off at the end of the blade peg, how would I remove the 3.5 inches of shaft that was bonded to the blade peg, in order to be able to reinsert the blade peg into the remaining portion of the shaft?

I realize this would shorten the enire length of the paddle by the 3.5 inches. However, this would be better than attempting to minimize the natural rotation when using a high stroke.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.



Epic could probably sell you a ferrule

– Last Updated: Jan-15-04 9:17 PM EST –

Then you could cut the shaft in the middle, change angle and glue the ferrule in to make it strong, or keep it a two piece.

I have a one piece Lightning and a Lendal which are awaiting warm weather for this treatment, but they will get shortened and become spares, so the ferrule will only be glued in to one side. I cannot epoxy in the house.

I didn’t realize there was such a thing.
This would be the way to go if Epic provides the ferrule. I will give them a call tomorrow and see if they have one.

I have a high reving (35,000 RPM) cut off tool used for cutting off aluminum and carbon arrows. I could use it to cut the shaft in half. It makes very clean cuts.

Thanks for the thought!


As long as the cut is square
a fine new hacksaw blade is supposed to wrk fine too. Good luck. Mark the shaft with a line parallel to the major axis to get the current alignment as a reference.

Guys , guys,too much to write &

– Last Updated: Jan-15-04 11:16 PM EST –

not enough me if you wish and I will talk you through it.........there IS A BETTER WAY. No need to order anything from factory or use air , or electric tools......shorten 1 cm or 12, lots of things to go over...... If going over 10 cm, better to pull each blade....not a hassle to do this (depending on paddle and skills of course). Need drill, miter box, common hacksaw, pen, tape and a good eye for best results. Cutting all from one end might put indexing / ovalizing in a weird position. Heating too much might exceed HDT of BOTH shaft and blade.......happy to help...just lemmie know.

Call Patrick What A Guy!

– Last Updated: Jan-16-04 7:29 AM EST –

Patrick makes great paddles and boats for a living. look up{ "tideline 19" (in quotes) paddleshop} on google to find his site and business phone # remember he lives in San Diego CA. His offer is generous.

works well
I used this method to shorten a fiberglass paddle and it worked great. The only consequence was my fault, but worth considering: I shortened it from 240 cm to 215, so I took off 25 cm. Unfortunately what I lost was the oval portion of the shaft so this (spare) paddle is less ovaled on one side. Other than that is the fact that one half is very short. Looks kinda funny on deck but seems to work well enough.