Any opinion, experience, rule, guideline or personal preference is welcome. The goal is to provide some sort of objective information for newbies or even oldies with oldie paddles. However, if you want to argue that any weight is okay, you can make that case too, but that position is not really informative. We should talk separately about canoe and kayak paddles, and as the OP I request the discussion be in ounces.
Too heavy is the one that came with my first boat. Aluminum shaft, thick plastic blades. I think it was great for emergencies on land. I really think you could dig or split firewood with it.
It lasted one trip . Took it back and started the multi paddle search. Today it’s carbon fiber.
I have no idea what mine weigh.
Every paddle is too heavy. Just use your hands.
I rarely use canoe paddles over 16 ounces…the majority of my favorites are 10-14 ounces. It’s personal preference that’s influenced by the fact that I like to drive upstream doing hit and switch from a kneeling position using straight shaft paddles.
I recently met someone that said he likes a heavier paddle because it’s better for exercise.
I don’t mean to go off topic but I do have one 6 oz ultralight Zaveral bent that feels too light on windy days. For me my 12 oz Black Bart Troublemakers are close to an ideal balance of all day lightness while still feeling substantial…I also have a 10-ish oz Zav straight shaft and bought the “medium” lay-up because I didn’t want anything lighter even though they offer light and ultralight lay-ups.
Between my wife and I we have 5 kayak paddles, from carbon/fiberglass to all carbon fiber to western red cedar… The heaviest is 30.8 oz and the lightest is 23.5 oz. Somewhere in the middle is my 27 oz Greenland paddle which is fast becoming my favorite.
I really have no issue up to about 35oz or so and I have certainly paddled with plenty of tour operators’ aluminum shafted 37+ oz paddles but I prefer lighter.
A canoe paddle that feels too heavy for the user and is too heavy for controlling the specific craft they’re paddling…comfortably.
I don’t worry too much about the weight as long as it is well built and doesn’t cost so much that I wouldn’t want to use it. Werner’s glass paddles are a pretty good example of light weight, strength and cost ratio. However, I still think the Carlisle Expedition is hard to beat for cost, weight and strength.
I prefer all carbon for canoe and kayak. 12oz or less for canoe and 24oz or less for kayak.
@Glenn MacGrady said:
and as the OP I request the discussion be in ounces.
Sorry. I am not from the land of oz, so I will have to pass on that.
Depends on your personal strength and budget. For me Werner CF line is my limit.
I have carbons and non carbons… An ounce or two use to really matter.
Now I don’t go far enough or fast enough to matter much nowadays.
No, we don’t.
Kayak. Too heavy: anything over 22 ounces for my Euro or 26 ounces for my GP. I can forgive the extra weight on the GP because of its buoyancy. Swing weight and shoulders count.
For Allan’s benefit, that’s 624 and 737 grams.
Oh no! They are over a pound!
I made a paddle out of an old barbell for the shaft and blades from brick pavers. Not too heavy!
I think the brick pavers will chip when you push off of rocks. I’ve had great luck with manhole covers, you can weld the barbell shafts to them and they just aren’t coming off! Plus, with that large a paddle area you get a real push when you put your biceps (!) into it!
Somebody on another paddler forum posted a 26 ounce Werner carbon Kalliste paddle for sale for $320 and somebody else posted the comment that “you can get a carbon paddle from Academy Sports for $99”.
Out of curiosity I looked at the Academy website and they do have a “carbon” paddle by Magellan for $149. It weighs 50 ounces!! 50 ounces is almost a pound heavier than most “barbell” aluminum and plastic tourist rental paddles! Also, half the buyers who reviewed the model reported that the shaft broke early on during use. Such a bargain!
I pointed out that using a 50 ounce paddle rather than a 26 ounce paddle would mean that you were swinging almost 1.5 extra tons of weight per hour.
30 strokes per minute x 60 minutes = 1800 strokes x 24 ounces = 43,200 ounces divided by 16 oz/pd = 2,700 pounds.
Second commenter said “I don’t think your physics/mathematics make sense”. Numbers don’t lie. Engineers, weigh in.
Out of curiosity I looked at the Academy website and they do have a “carbon” paddle by Magellan for $149. It weighs 50 ounces!! 50 ounces is almost a pound heavier than most “barbell” aluminum and plastic tourist rental paddles! Also, half the buyers of the model reported that the shaft broke early on. Such a bargain.
Carbon takes many forms. Maybe something was lost in translation.
Maybe the Magellan paddle is carved out of asphalt.