Pulling the grip from a Zaveral

Can anyone remind me how this is best/most easily achieved?

I’ve forgotten, if I ever knew, and asking here is more fun than emailing ZRE.

use a heat gun to loosen the epoxy then twist and pull gently. I have had a little luck this way but not one hundred percent. I suspect it could be what type of epoxy was underneath,

Best call Bob Zaveral if it is new paddle.

If you are wanting to shorten it,
which I assume you are; You cut off the grip about two inches down the shaft. Then you file the portion of the shaft that is still on the grip down to remove it. Usually you only need to file it in one place, and then peel it off.

Then cut the shaft to the size you want it, and re cement the grip back on.

Make sure you don’t over file or over sand the grip portion


Thanks, gents.
I couldn’t remember if steam, boiling water, or a heat gun was supposed to do it. Two inches would probably be about right, though. Mechanical means would be my last resort.

I did exactly as described by roanguy.
To cut the shaft,I made a jig which is 2 2X4 blocks with V notches cut in them attached to another 2X4. The shaft is laid in the jig and turned by a helper while you hold a fine toothed hacksaw against the shaft. I taped both sides of the cut with duct tape to help keep the blade on track. Worked perfectly.

Call Bob first … FWIW, grips don’t
need to go that far down into shaft.

Overkill but will work -:wink:
I’ve cut a few paddles (not canoe) with a simple metal cutting fine toothed blade by hand. Shaft wrapped with 1-2 wraps of masking tape before cutting. No jigs - just rest the shaft somewhere where it won’t get scratched. After the cut, simply sand with a piece of sandpaper on a flat wood block to remove the half-millimeter or so that might be out of round.

Even if it is not perfectly cut, that part goes into the grip so a half millimeter or so imperfection does not matter in the least.

Of course, a jig will make it nearly perfect, but “good enough” in this case is sufficient as nothing is seen and there is no drawback to having a minor imprefection.

I’ve shortened a 2-piece carbon wing paddle paddle this way and just recently cut in half and reattached in the center a 1-piece bent-shaft white water paddle (to make it a 0 offset from whatever it was before). In both cases no jig was used and both worked to within 1/2 millimeter without trying too hard… Both now work better than new -:wink:

As for removing the grip, heat will help only if some glue that melts easy was used and will not work well if a good epoxy was used. If the grip is epoxied to the shaft, then heat will just do nothing or if too much heat - will weaken the shaft and the grip… In that case - scrape the short piece of shaft from inside the grip after cutting it off…

Also, if the grip on the Zav is anything like the carbon grip on my lughtweight Werner canoe paddle, then it is likely paper thin, filled with styrofoam, and very easy to damage - so don’t squeze too hard and don’t heat it up too much!

per ZRE
According to the ZRE website, you use a heat gun to heat the area where the grip fits into the shaft until the glue softens, then you pull the grip out.

Be careful with the heat.
Putting on too much heat can damage both the shaft and the grip.

One supposes I coulda just looked
there first, eh?

Well, I did, but obviously not very thoroughly!

Thanks to all.

– Last Updated: Oct-28-12 9:40 AM EST –

I am much better informed.

Sometimes I really miss the Leister heat gun I had access to at one of my former jobs. It seems like the ideal tool for this application:


Now, if I decide to purchase this paddle that's a bit too long for me, perhaps I'll ask its present owner to make the modification as a condition of sale!


The paddle is being offered at
a better than reasonable price, I think, and the seller seems like a good guy. Also, I get the impression that he may have more experience with this kind of stuff than I.

Do you think it would be too much to ask considering that he and I both know the price is a bargain?

I’m sure that since he is a reasonable
guy with experience at shortening paddles, he has probably already considered that. Experienced or not, cutting black gold makes him a bit nervous.

Maybe it would calm his nerves if
I offered an additional 15%?

Nah. he lives on nerves.

A thought
If the seller is well below cost, why would he/she be willing to do extra labor that might damage the goods for a few bucks? from a marketing point it does not work out; someone else wil realize the bargain.

If the heat doesn’t work, cut the thing off with a hacksaw 2" - 2.5 " below the junction as needed for desired length. Then, with, hopefully, a shaft "skirt around the grip, start a hacksaw kerf in the shaft towards the grip end. Take a pair of pliers and peel the shaft off the grip. The grip shaft will need sanding to remove residual glue. This has worked well for me several times when heat didn’t loosen the bond.

Good advice.
There may be some good-natured ribbing going on here regarding the “negotiations”, but that’s pretty much exactly the approach I’d take.

I only wonder what temperature should be the limit in order to avoid damage and how many TPI is best for a saw blade, should it come to that, or if a cut-off wheel on a Dremel might be better.

Charlie’s method is ‘my’ method that
I learned from Pat at Onno.I didn’t mess around with any heat,just peeled the CF off and the glue came with it.

ZRE Grip Removal
Sorry I didn’t see your message sooner. You can keep this for future use.

How To Remove a ZRE Grip

Shortening over 1.5" this method will work best

*Wear eye protection and a good pair of work gloves to avoid slivers.

*Wrap tape around the shaft where to be cut to avoid splintering.

*Measure down the shaft from the grip end 1.5" and cut off using a fine tooth hack saw.

*File or grind a vertical line through the carbon shaft to where you see the glue. The carbon is very thin so do not file or grind into the grip stub.

  • If you have a heat gun warm it up and pry the carbon shaft/sleeve off from the grip stub.
  • Once this is done refer to sizing an uncut paddle.

    Grip replacement or Shortening less than 1.5" this method should be used.

    *Wear eye protection and a good pair of work gloves to avoid slivers.
  • Heat the top portion of the shaft below your grip with a heat gun. This has to be done with a heat gun not a torch, a torch will damage the shaft. The grip stubs that goes inside the shafts are approx 1.5" long.

    *Once it is very warm you can pull the grip straight out. If you use a twisting motion to remove your grip you will damage it. A very slight side to side movement is ok. Do Not Twist!
  • If your grip will not come out reheat heat the top portion of the shaft and try pulling it out again.
  • Once you remove your grip let it cool. Both the shaft and the grip will regain its hardness and strength.
  • Cut the top of the shaft down to your desired length, sand inside of shaft so your epoxy glue will bond properly. The top inside corner of your shaft should be sanded like a funnel leaving the outside corner sharp. This allows your grip to seat deeper and reduced the shaft to grip transition line.
  • Before gluing the grip back in, empty your shaft of a debris that may be inside. Fit your grip in before gluing back in to be sure the fit and length is ok.
  • Apply epoxy glue on your grip stub and push it into your shaft, be sure it is lined up with the blade.

    *Wipe off excess glue and let dry before using.