What's your favorite ferrule lock and why?

Hi All, You may have noticed my previous whining over the current Werner ferrule locking mechanism compared to the old snap button ferrule locks we all grew up with, so I’m looking to change to another brand :frowning: and a demo/test paddle won’t provide information about the longer term (3-5 yrs) dependability and daily maintenance requirement of the newer ferrule locking mechanisms. So what are you using now (at least one year of ownership) what’s the brand, and more importantly, your impression of your NON snap-button ferrule lock? and …THANK YOU!

Is new Werner lock different from 4-5 years ago?

I have settled on the Werner paddles as what I use.

Here are some I or my girlfriend have owned in the past and what I did/didn’t like:

  • cheap Aquabound paddle with the standard button and 3 holes. Aluminum shaft was kind of heavy. Broke one in the surf once. Connection was fine.
  • Onno medium size. The external lock has broken, so that paddle is currently out of commission until Patrick (maker in HI) gets more parts. Infinitely adjustable in feather angle, and has a 10 cm adjustment in length, which is nice. The external connector mechanism means it won’t work well as a spare (that external connector would get caught on the deck rigging).
  • Swift paddle - all worked fine, but the external connector mechanism means it won’t work well as a spare (would get caught on the deck rigging). Sold off.
  • H2O Chrystal X - has an internal ferrule connector, as does Werner, but it uses a different mechanism. Rather than the button connector, it stays locked unless you push the male shaft inward into female, and that frees it. Adjust to a certain unusual feather angle and the paddles separate. I liked the idea of no external connectors, so the paddle would work as a spare (not having anything to catch deck rigging). But the connection is not as robust as I’d like - some sudden motions during surf or rock play seemed to cause the internal device to get loose and adjust the feather angle (so I can’t get it exactly unfeathered as it used to be). Still have, but will sell off at some point to someone who isn’t as hard a paddler as I am.

Between my GF and I, we have 5 Werners which are our standard paddles and spares. One is the old style with a button that sticks out, and the other 4 all have the current flush button. Just need to keep them clean and all seems to work. But I do always bring 2 paddles when I go - if one has a dirty connector and won’t hold together, I just use the other.

I do also have a 1 piece GP, and have never had a problem with the ferule (for what should be obvious reasons). Don’t use it much as I prefer larger euro blades.

My Carlisle Expedition fiberglass paddle has the metal button and three holes. Weight: 33 oz. Never a problem with it. Received a Werner Cyprus and never went back to the Carlisle, but keep it for guests.

I paddle fresh water only so salt isn’t a problem. I don’t take it apart until I’m off our sandy beaches, All gear is rinsed when I get home.

I also use a Lumpy GP. Either the Werner or the Lumpy is my spare, depending on conditions and distance.

Werner Cyprus, Lendal Storm, Epic MidWing

Fav - Werner, though I do rinse with fresh water, lean against wall (should hang) with blade up (on weekend ocean trips), on my daily StJohns (mix salt/fresh) I don’t
I like the ‘flush’ button, though really didn’t mind the old button that stuck up (both newer variable feather), prefer over older fixed feathered setting

Lendal Storm
don’t like the allen wrench, could only feather in one direction

Epic MidWing
(adjustable ferrule) - the mechanism works very well, though I wish it was ‘flush’ (don’t know how they would do it), in winter pogies won’t ‘slide’ over it (allows adjustment for length as well as feather, though I never use this feature)

AT Expedition SL Tour… Its from 2006 and has never jammed. Its used about thirty days a year mostly in salt water but not exclusively . Its an infinitely adjustable angle.

My favorite is a Mitchell Black Magic one piece. I also use a Lendal X-Range. I generally put it together at home and take it apart at home. But I have the little wrench in my glove compartment for those days I might want tidier packing - like my last vacation. I find 1 piece more convenient to deal with (really not to deal with) to, from, and while paddling. My partner uses a Werner Cypress as a permanent 1 piece. She also said she just doesn’t feel a need to bother with taking it apart anymore, as she’s had enough issues with doing so.
I also really like the Bending Branches Navigator. Simple stainless button works fine so far, but it’s the paddling with the paddle that I’ve come to appreciate.
I like the simple snap in place button for a spare. Nimbus also has a simple snap-in botton that seems to work great.

I sure appreciate your feedback. Pretty sure my next purchase will be a snap button ferrule two piece, big question that will take time to find is which paddle’s performance of those with snap button ferrules I prefer since I’ll have to change from Werner when I’m ready ($$$) to throw in the towel. That performance answer will only come after trials on the water. Probably be using my wifes AB Stingray carbon with snap button on my longer tours until then, with my old Skagit snap as backup. Shuna will only come when willing to deal with it as a one piece…ie: day trips, maybe 2-3 day camp tours. Wish I hadn’t sold my old Comano snap button.