Norsaq questions

If purchasing, which would you prefer, walnut or cedar? I’m thinking walnut’s harder and heavier, red cedar’s softer and lighter. Seems like the weight wouldn’t matter much, so walnut’s preferred.

Also, one or two? Probably traditional would be one, as why would you have two throwing sticks on you’re boat? However, if using them as hand paddles, for rolling or otherwise, maybe two.

What do you think?

Paul S.

don’t know
The cedar has a little more floatation, is much softer so more wear factor, Walnut harder last longer and probably pretteir grain pattern but more of a chance for warpage.

tuff choice, also what about other woods?

One or two well if I were actually throwing them I would tink more like a dozen


Function first - form later
Make something a bit crude and over-sized first. All it has to do is feel good in your hands, scull OK, fit under the deck lines, and float*. Cedar, pine, squashed detergent bottle - whatever.

Buy or make something nice later when you know what you want on to look at on deck. Hand paddle design (solid or laminated), or more authentic Norsaq throwing stick form (which I prefer and think is hard to beat - note: usually gripped sort of in the middle…) - plain, laminated, edged, whatever…

Or you could do one like mine that looks a bit on the fancy side, but is really super light plain WRC and MarineTex putty - and made for use not show:

(The “new-old”, not the one from a bamboo cutting board. Bamboo one’s OK, but also in the heavy/lethal weapon category at 9 oz. The new-old is crazy light at less than 4 oz. *I also have one made from a Swordfish bill that’s 10.5 oz and sinks like a stone - but definitely tough enough to hurl a harpoon!)

Anybody use one in each hand?
I was thinking that I might use one in each hand to improve my C-C form, and potentially build up to a hand C-C roll. Have you seen many people use a norsaq in each hand for something like this?

Paul S.

I’ve used two norsaq when I’m doing silly rolls such as Dubside’s double norsaq swan roll. A C-to-C is a tougher hand roll to learn initially and I’d recommend utilizing a sweep to C with a full layback to learn your first hand roll. With that said, I think that two norsaqs is overkill. Two norsaqs probably have as much surface area as a paddle blade so you wouldn’t really be training your body to work with less resistance.

check out the “swan Roll”…leon Somme…dang…cool

I have a collection
If you’re not throwing a harpoon with it, Cedar is fine. I have several, one cedar, two pine, and one ash. I use the cedar norsaq the most for rolling, as it is the most accurate replica.

The ash one, I use for harpoon throwing.

I usually only use one for rolling, but two is fun sometimes. It’s all about fun.


mine is

– Last Updated: Feb-15-07 12:14 PM EST –

black walnut, weighs 4 1/2 oz. I can't imagine weight matters much for something that small. Remember, you're supposed to be able to roll with a brick :) I only use it for rolling and have never tried using two. The other one I like to roll with isn't even a norsaq, but a piece of driftwood I found on the beach that fits my had perfectly. It only weighs 3 oz, I have no idea what kind of wood it is.
Pictures here:


A link:

Half way down under “Fun or Trick Rolls”, first one.

I Think The Walnut One
will make a great impromptu club for killing baby seals for making the sof. :slight_smile:

I made two with heavier fir. Yup, I used 'em more as mallets to bang things down, out, off, whatever.

The WRC versions are much lighter, more bouyant, and feel better in the water.

Save the expensive walnut for something else.


Thanks everyone!
Good points all around; function over form, two is overkill for surface area, WRC is good if not throwing a harpoon, etc. Enjoyed the drift wood norsaq, too!

I think I’ll rough something out on Saturday. I just have a skill saw, block plane, rounded rasp, stuff like that. If I can buy WRC at Home Depot or something, then good. Otherwise I got good ol’ fir.

Dennis H. offered to help me out, too. The man’s a craftsman. Thanks Dennis!

I’m thinking of going with length and width dimensions of

and thickness and profile of

and maybe round the edges some.

What do you think? Other norsaq plans out there?

Paul S.

Just in case
Along the lines of the drift wood norsaq, anyone know any inexpensive store bought items that, possibly when cut down, would make a good makeshift norsaq for rolling purposes?

Paul S.

(oh lazy one. hey, so I’d rather be paddling than making paddling gear. sue me!)

Cheap Ping Pong Paddle

– Last Updated: Feb-16-07 5:47 AM EST –

(ala Dutkey) will serve the same function, if it is about adding to your rolls as opposed to hunting seals.

For learning handrolls, the other thing is to take a piece of minicell, shape to oversize of your hands, add some velcro straps to slip your hand through. Voila! Cheap handrolling aid. Or, the H20 webbed (but fingerless) neo paddling gloves that some swimmers/surfers used. They sell for a bit over 15 bucks. These gloves have the flexibility to allow you to grab the spare paddle off the deck, while under, if need be.

The best time to make a wrc norsaq is if you decided to make a storm paddle. In which case, the left-over end piece will supply you with at least 3 possible norsaqs.


Here’s the plans I use:

Makes for a real pretty norsaq.



– Last Updated: Feb-21-07 1:12 AM EST –

I found an unused redwood 4x4 that I had brought with me from Calif, from when I had build a redwood fence.

Took the skill saw, block plane, and round rasp to it, Friday night. Came out better than I thought it would. Tung oil Saturday. Tried it out Sunday.

I'm a ways from learning a norsaq roll. I hope it's not the norsaq ;-). I did learn the shotgun roll on both sides. I think trying to do the norsaq helped me to get the shotgun. Thanks goodness too for Dubside's DVD telling me to drop the other shoulder back, chin up and head back on the recovery. I'll keep working on the shotgun roll until it's silly easy, and keep trying the norsaq roll once in awhile in between.

Paul S.