Shortening-lengthing wood paddles?

I have done this by cutting the shafts on a 45 and gluing then together with Gorilla glue and fiberglassing the outside.Is there a better-stronger way? Should I put a rod of something glued inside?


I would pin them
I would probably make a V jig. cut the paddle at 45. Using the jig drill a pin hole into each piece and epoxy the pieces together. Once that is setup, I would either fiberglass over the area or better yet, run carbon fiber tape and epoxy over the shaft. You could even cut a design into the end of the carbon fiber to create a pattern and make it a decorative piece as well as a structural one.

One consideration
I’m not too experienced with wood-working, but I do know basic physics. The closer you put the joint to the grip end, the less stress it will recieve. The closer you put the joint to the spot where you grip the shaft with your lower hand, the more stress it will recieve. Best to keep the joint as high as you can while still having the working room you need.

To shorten
I’d cut it just below the grip. Cut the grip wings off the grip and refit/relaminate to the shaft forming a new grip.

For all the info,I really appreciate this board.That last idea-to leave the main shaft intact-great-I never thought of that.What length and size pins and made of what for lengthing?


Exactly how I thought it might be done…

– Last Updated: Apr-12-08 7:47 AM EST –

...Make sure you allow for the width of the saw cut. The cut should line up with the inside of the "wings" - not the outside of the shaft. Otherwise, you'll lose your blade width on both sides.

I would recommend gluing the base (flat cross-section) of the cut-off grip section to a square block of scrap, in such a way that the block will line the grip up with a table saw fence and hold the grip in position for the cuts. Use a large enough piece of scrap that it keeps your hand away from the blade.

Much safer and more accurate than attempting to make the cuts free-hand.

Adjust the fence so the cut leaves the loose piece ("wing") on the outside of the blade (not between the blade and the fence). Then use another piece of scrap to push the removed stock away from the blade. Better yet - using a dedicated "pusher", feed the grip/scrap combination all the way through the blade, and let the "wing" get pushed by the piece cut off the scrap. Turn off saw, remove stock, turn glued-up piece over, repeat cut...

I recently replaced a lousy grip
on a free homemade paddle to see if I could do it. I built a jig for the tablesaw, a sled they call it and clamped the shaft to it at a 60-80? degree angle for more glue surface. I did not use the fence. The sled held the paddle steady and the grip was the loose end after the cut. Did the same with the new grip that I glued up on a short shaft. No gorilla glue, pins or fiberglass. That would be overkill. Just titebond II. And I guarantee it is plenty stong. I thought the scarf joint looked cool so I made another grip with a number of scarf cuts in alternating wrc and basswood to give it an unusual appearance. As guideboatguy said, not as much stress up there as near the blade or even mid shaft.

Sounds similar
to the way I shortened a BB paddle. NT suggested the “V” cuts, and I was too lazy to construct a sled, so I just used a pullsaw and did it freehand. Worked reasonably well, but the berries would be to have a radial arm saw or at least a power miter saw to make accurate, duplicate cuts. And I pinned the grip pieces athrough the shaft for security.