Marking gear

I got my first paddle for Christmas. I’m told that I should put my name and phone number on it in case I get separated on it. It seems a shame to mark up a beautiful new paddle, but I recognize that it’s a good idea. My husband letters attractively; I guess I could get him to do it with a waterproof marker. Would you do it on the facing blade? Any other ideas? My paddle blades are white. What do people do who have darker colored blades?

I have a sticker for my boat. I have not marked my pfd yet, but suppose I should do that too. I see that an instructor in my club marks pretty much everything.

Golf club labels
Marking your gear is a smart thing to do. It makes it possible for a noble person to do the right thing - reunite lost equipment with its owner. Happened to me 2 years ago when i left an expensive paddle on the beach. Later that night I got a call from a nice guy who came upon it and called me.

Buy a sheet of golf club labels. They are waterproof and sturdy. I got a sheet of 20 for about $25. I placed the labels on the shaft right where the shaft transitions to the blade - a label on each side. Stick one inside your boat as well.

If they are high end paddles…
I would label them or put some kind of identifying mark on them.

We pulled up on a beach (our take out) in the Florida Keys about five or six years ago.

Our car was in sight of the boats, and it took several trips to carry the gear to the car.

Before we started carrying it, a lady strolled up and asked my wife all kinds of questions about her boat and gear, and then sat down about fifty feet away.

Just prior to carrying the boats, my wife asked me what I did with her PFD.

Both the lady and the PFD were gone!

Jack L

I sign my good kayak paddles
Black marker across the white face, think of it as an autograph.

The coast guard asks that you put contact info in your boat in case they ever find it they can find out if it was lost or if they need to look for a body.

I write my name and phone # on the PFDs. Other misc gear I always put a little mark on it just to avoid confusion at a takeout or wherever.

yeah its time to get out the black and

– Last Updated: Feb-06-15 11:39 AM EST –

silver sharpies and remark the gear. An annual event for sure. Especially on the paddle, the phone number and name wears away pretty quick.

I got a kayak paddle returned to me this summer. My son was using it in a double duck. The duckie had a blowout so two of them climbed onto an already overloaded shredder. I don't know what those kids were smokin', but when they got to the top of Millers Folly Rapid ((New River Gorge)they started to far right and headed for the large undercut. My son scrambled out, onto the top of the undercut rock but left the ducky paddle on top of the rock before jumping back onto the shredder.

To get the paddle, the guy who found it had to run an alternate line and eddy out behind the rock and do some rock climbin' up the backside to grab it. i figured I'd never see that paddle again. I hadn't remarked the paddle in a couple of years but it was still barely legible.

I bought the returner some craft beer and got the paddle back. A year from now my son turns 21, so he can huy his own beer the next time he loses a paddle.

ahhhh the things we do for our kids as paddling parents. Nothing hurts worse than knowin' my own kid was in a raft that ran a dumbsh** line. He's learnin' not everyday or place is Disneyland.

Now if he'd just had his paddle leashed to him. That could have made things real interesting! Oops wrong thread!

I’ve had 1 returned so far
I just put 3 bands of bright tape on my ZRE’s to easily identify them from afar, then I write my name and phone number in sharpie on the bands.

I lost a paddle during a race and had it returned within a couple hours. Paddlers are a more honest than average group, so if one finds it, I think you have a good chance of getting it back.

Also, nail polish holds up over time very well, but often doesn’t look as nice.

I write my name and phone # on both paddle blades, using a waterproof marker. Even when I did it on a black paddle, I could see the writing, though I had to hold it at an angle. If a thief wanted it, he could’ve easily marked over it. The main idea is to let honest people who find your paddle contact you, that’s all.

Boats also get marked in several areas, some of them hidden inside. I put my initials plus serial # on for those. My former state of residence required people to write their names and addresses on boats.

PFDs I have never marked, because there’s a pretty good chance I’ll end up selling one after wearing it for a while. If I wore one that was a very common model, I’d probably mark it.

Other items worth marking: Tow kits, VHF radios, dry bags…anything that costs a lot or contains something that does.

mark all my gear now after a Buddy of mine got his boat back after he lost it in on a WW run.(name & number with a sharpie inside the cockpit) Ended up 8 miles down river. I don’t care how it “looks” as long as I have a chance to get my gear back after losing it.

Never thought about my phone number! I do have a sticker on both blades (since I separate the two halves for transport) and all my friends have the same paddle, so just having different stickers was enough to tell them apart. Maybe I’ll write my number on the stickers.

Yes mark it.
A lesson I learned on dive boats. Whenever there are a lot of people and a lot of gear around an honest mistake is very possible.

If you forget something you may get a call before you get too far.

Took a long trip
With a friend. We use the same paddle, but he paddles right and I paddle left. I have pictures of him with my paddle. I can tell because it is worn the wrong way. We never know we switched at the time. I only noticed after from looking at the pictures.

The paddle I got is an Aquabound Stingray hybrid small shaft 220cm. It’s not a Werner, but still pretty good.

I have the stingray too
Sign it like a rock star.

Our boats are marked inside the
hatches, if they have one, with our name & phone number. Paddles & PFD’s are also marked. Should I sell a boat, I let the new owners know.

One time we were at a ramp where many others were getting out also and as usual most will rest awhile. One dude, whose stuff was near ours picked up one of our CF paddles that had black blades and started to leave with it. Hubby told him it was ours and he got snippy. He was told to look on the blade where our name was noted. Said he didn’t need to as it WAS his and that was that. One of his cronies told him to check as someone had already taken his to their vehicle. He checked and apologized, so it doesn’t hurt to put your stamp on it and you can also check it before you go home.

After you use your equipment a few times, it’s impossible to keep them looking new.

This is an outdoor sport with wind, water, and sand. We do take our paddles apart each time we’re done and rinse the sand off which helps for future use.

Enjoy it instead of fretting.

My solution
I wound up ordering some waterproof labels from labelyourstuff dot com. I’ve had them on my gear for several months now and they’ve held up well. (I have no connection or relationship with them, just a satisfied customer.)