I am trying to find a “universal t-grip adaptor”…for use in dense mangrove tunnels where 230cm kayak paddles are impossible to use.
What I have been doing is splitting my kayak paddle in two and using just one end to paddle my way in the tunnels. It works, but would work even better if I had a canoe-style rubber t-grip on top. I could keep the t-grip in my go-bag and it would be a great option for tight paddling conditions (without carrying an extra paddle).
Do they make these? Not seeing much on line. It would be great to be able to pop it on once I hit the tunnels.
DIY from PVC
Use a t-fitting of PVC pipe and fashion it out of that. Pretty easy.
For a cheap, easy fix you could try a hard rubber ball. Just make a hole in it big enough to fit tightly on the end of your paddle joint.
You could also cut down a narrow-bladed canoe paddle and fashion a new grip on it. I prefer that. I took a ZRE carbon straight shaft and cut it down to 25" for use in my sea kayak and it works great.
use to make them to fit their paddles.
I may have a great option for this!
Try using a tennis ball with a hole cut in it that tightly fit over the shaft of 1/2 of your kayak paddle. Can't get much simpler than that.
If it were me; I'd carry a short, cheap, lightweight, canoe paddle as a spare. You wouldn't have to deal with the hassle of repeatedly taking apart & putting back together your 2 piece kayak paddle.
Concern about t-grip adapter kit: Will repeated insertion/removal of adapter kit from your kayak paddle create a looser fit of 2 parts of kayak paddle???
Pick 3 suggested options; try all 3 in real situation. Whatever works best for YOU is the best option.
Universal might be asking too much
There probably isn’t a “standard” size fitting.
You haven’t been going trough …
the mangrove tunnels enough !
I make a challenge out of keeping mine together on the smallest of tunnels.
Takes a lot of tunnels, but I can do it in ones only inches wider than my 21" wide kayak and one where the overhead canopy is so low that there is lots of ducking.
With good peripheral vision and a combination of high angle paddling strokes behind and fast glides with rudder strokes it can be fun as you leave the paddlers with single blades behind.
When we canoed through a mangrove swamp in the Everglades last year we were using kayak paddles. As things got tighter and more tunnel like I separated my paddle so I wouldn't get it caught on overhead branches. But I quickly discovered that one advantage of the double paddle outweighed the catching annoyance: I was in the bow and with the double paddle the upside blade cleared the spider webs from my path as we progressed. After having to evict a couple of arachnids from my cleavage, I stuck the blades back together.
You used to be able to buy t-grips that converted kayak paddles on Ebay for $10 or $15, but now I only see a $40 one for one brand of paddle.
ADDED: I see Campmor has a handle converter from Hobie, but it might not work on other paddle brands.
Indeed - I am relatively new to tunnels. I have been trying to improve my form using the long paddle in there though!
Yup…we did encounter some spiders on the last tunnel…I have a SOT though - which makes it a lot easier to bruch them off, or wash them off…
My buddy, in a normal kayak, sent me ahead on point as he is deadly afraid of spiders. Especially ones that fall inside his Yak!