Paddle modification

So; while I often use a GP, I just as often use the euro: specifically a Werner Ikelos (carbon). I’ve come to think that the Ikelos is a bit too large for all day use. Not much; but I’d like to see a size in between the Cyprus and Ikelos. What I’m wondering is: can I reduce the edges of the blade by say, 1/4’’ or so all around, then seal those edges with thickened epoxy? Despite being told the foam core extends to the edge, I can’t see that as the case with the blades edges being as thin as they are. Thoughts?

I have the same question about another CF paddle. Someone on here suggested cutting it down . I have reduced the shaft length on one with no problem.
What scares me is the paddle blades are very thin and most saws will vibrate the material to some degree. This can be mollified by taping the edges and cutting through the tape which is what I did with the shaft. I used a very fine hacksaw and cut by hand. I can’t quite see that with a blade.
Good question!

We cut finished fiberglass/Kevlar/carbon with a cut off wheel. Be really careful with the dust.

The foam is a really thin layer, a lot of manufacturers of high end carbon/glass composites cut the centers out of the foam cores leaving a thin layer of foam tapered to the edges, then bond the halves with a thick epoxy.

This is from the Werner page.

I know the feeling of what you’re after in the scales down Ikelos concept but you’re just going to likely ruin a $425 paddle. Without that Dynel edge I’m not sure that paddle is going to be trustworthy. You could get away with your plan on a Lendal, Nimbus or Foster (yeah, dating myself on those later examples) as their cores taper out well before the edge.

Plan B - sell the Ikelos and order a Lendal Storm off the order I have coming in June.

See you on the water,
Marshall Seddon
The River Connection, Inc.
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Hyde Park, NY. 12538
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Hey Marshall;
I’d given that some thought (the Storm). BUT, it’s the same surface area as the Ikelos. No advantage to that.

One option is to use a fine-tooth blade on a coping or fret saw. You’ll need to find a blade with hardened teeth like a hacksaw blade; otherwise, they’ll dull really quickly when cutting composite.

An oscillating saw with a metal-cutting or tile-cutting blade will work, but cutting curves is more of a challenge.

A safer (for the paddle blade), but perhaps messier option is to use a belt or spindle sander. With a fine-grain belt, you can remove material slowly and precisely, then finish it by hand (which you have to do with any of these methods). Sanding makes a lot of dust, so you need a respirator, combined with good indoor dust collection or working outdoors.

As for the original question, I wouldn’t cut down the blades on a foam-core paddle. If you expose the core, that means that the sides are no longer bonded together and the blade will be prone to splitting. You would need to wrap the edges in fiberglass, carbon fiber, Kevlar or Dynel and epoxy, which would be a pain and may not look great.

I’m glad I bought another paddle.

This veers into a separate subject (not answering your question - how to cut blade, but selection of a paddle):
Marshall suggested the Lendal Storm and you correctly responded that the area of the 2 are comparable.
We’re talking a lot of money here (for a new paddle) so I would suggest trying one out before buying first. In my experience:

I’ve had an Ikelos for years but have never really taken to it (I’ll use it in mild surf - won’t risk in heavier, occasionally paddle with it, but still not a real fan).
I picked up a Storm a few years ago and immediatly liked it a lot.
I use it as my daily paddle, however, on long day paddles (over 25 miles), it does tire me out too much.
Therefore, on my long day paddles I’ll use my Cyprus (and I’m soon to try out a Lendal Cadence).

Anyway, everyone is different, I would suggest not cutting a perfectly good paddle, try a couple different ones, and either buy new or find a used one that you end up liking for your longer paddles.

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Quite different paddles, not just in surface area. Different shapes for starters with the Storm being more like a whitewater playboat paddle. Creates a strong catch on insertion. The tapering foam core means that the buoyancy kicks in when the paddle is fully immersed in the water not as its being submerged like what you get on the Ikelos. The Cyprus doesn’t have the same volume so it’s resistance isn’t as noticeable. Perhaps not as much lift on the exit as a fully foamed blade but I noticed this years ago training for distance races. I’d be fatigued with the Ikelos after 8-12 miles but not with the Storm. I no longer have my Foster/Nimbus paddles but he cross section was similar.

I lengthened a cheap 230cm paddle to 260cm for my canoe and the increased length was quite noticeable in terms of torque. I have been contemplating cutting the blade down in the way you are only in my case the blade is plastic and would be no issue.

I would never cut down anything carbon fiber as I had some experience trying to save a carbon fiber golf club shaft that went very wrong. IMO carbon is intended to be left the way the Keebler Elf made it in the hollow tree.

You might want to buy a cheep paddle like mine and cut away at it as a way of finding the area you want and then buy whatever you can find close to that in a new carbon paddle then sell the one you have.

I am real squimish over cutting down the Ikelos. I do think of the Cadence X but am a bit put off by the non foiled back face. A no brainer if it had the smooth back face, but….

I’d just sell it and buy a used Cyprus.

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Smaller storms available than Ikelos.

You’ll ruin it and it’s then worthless.



If you find another paddle you like, you should be able to sell the Ikelos for at least $200. With a Dynel edge, foam core, and carbon fiber blade I’d be very hesitant to try and modify the Ikelos. If you didn’t like the result the paddle would be worthless.

These days I bet you could get more than that, $300 or even $350.


You’re right no paddles around. Decent shape 300 minimum unless it’s 220 or longer.

Just looked new 215 is 420 USD. Still think 300 is easy.

I did this with my Epic wing paddle, but it doesn’t seem to have a foam sandwich. Also did it to my touring paddle, and the foam shows, it is necessary to really seal the edge.

The folks who suggested selling the paddle and get a new one are right on the mark.

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That was my experience as well. I haven’t done 25 miles yet. But the 10-12 mile distances I cover? I’m fine.