Wing Paddle direct from China

-- Last Updated: Jul-21-16 7:46 PM EST --

I purchased a Z&J SPORT Carbon Fiber Kayak Paddle Epic Medium Blade Wing Paddle In Oval shaft on Ebay.

I paid $207.00 shipped "make offer" it arrived in 10 days and weights 24.05 ounces and the quality appears excellent and it performs excellent. I purchased the paddle not knowing what it would be like and am well pleased. The price is about half of brand name wing paddles. It is great to support local companies and brand names but I didn't drive manufacturing out of the US and I am getting 1% raises a year so that all I can afford to pay for a wing paddle. Just imformation for poor paddlers who wish to paddle. I am also voting for Trump. Maybe we can bring our jobs home. At least we could say we tried.

For the 200 mile+ update.

Not everything from China is junk, but it certainly seems all the junk comes from China.

Having worked as a machinist, first making lawn equipment and heavy machinery parts then aerospace, I can tell you absolute junk can look great as long as you don’t look with gauges.

Give us a review after a year …
You get what you pay for.

Not sure if they still do, but Epic did have a plant in China making kayaks and I think paddles.

There was some stink about it, don’t remember exactly why.

Bill H.

good luck
Good luck with both your cheapoid paddle and your poorly informed political choice. Maybe you can put that money you think you saved into an investment – I hear tell there’s bridge in Brooklyn you can have for a song.

$207 US?
Quality, patent infringement, local support issues, politics aside, anyone with some composite materials knowledge know if a carbon wing paddle could be made business sustainably here in the US for $207 shipped? I know it’s a bit of a business model design question but is that the effect of nearly indentured servitude wages and that transport has gotten so cheap?

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Politics aside
There are some Chinese built wings available in the U.S. and I have had the chance to try one out a few months ago. The one I tried was built by Stellar. I also was shown a couple of Chinese wings at a kayak manufacturer–which I shall not name. All of these paddles looked like they were well built.

I once inquired why some of the major domestic paddle manufacturers do not bother with wings. The answer was “limited market.”

After trying out a wing, my assessment is that it would be most useful as a racing paddle, or for surf skis. For the short time I did use one, I didn’t think it was very useful for a variety of maneuvering strokes, but for fast cruising …

The reality is everything is made in China. The United States does not inforce the Free Trade Agreement we have with China. Our Steel mills are gone, our Paper and Shoe factories are gone. We are merely a consumer economy exchanging services and imported goods. China is actually trying to become like us and Japen which are consumer economys now. I bought a Fat bike from Bikes Direct for $799.00 and it came in a box. My wife has the same bike with “brand” stickers and we paid $1400.00 for it. I buy from Amazon not my local store whenever I can> It’s all the same thing. I was trying to give a heads up on a good paddle. People can do as they wish and can afford. I think Trump is really lacking but he is the only one talking about trade and jobs. If the country continues as it is we will all have bigger problems than buying a wing paddle from China.

Telling Me
Just walk into Walmart…

Not everything.
I understand where you’re coming from, but there are excellent products made in the USA.

My kayaks, paddles, and sprayskirt all are home grown. Brands: Eddyline, Lumpy (carved from Western Red Cedar), Werner, and Seals.

Fabulous and friendly customer service included. That’s priceless.

every dime
you spend in China goes to strengthen their military. Which will be an huge problem in the future.

Im on board
Im with you on the paddle. I cant afford $450 for an epic small mid wing, so I’m likely going to buy a RPC3 small wing for $240. Would I like to support epic? Yes. Can I afford to…? No. Also, at least with epic, you pay a lot more for the sticker. They’re boats are more expensive for the same weight vs many other brands.

I’d also like a follow up review in 6 months or a year. The guys on have had no issues with RCP’s paddles that I’ve heard of.

I agree we are willingly giving up our middle class by not supporting American manufacturing, but we must choose our battles. A wing paddle isnt on my battle list. We really suffer when we loose the commercial and industrial goods manufacturers (like automotive, pneumatics, aerospace, and other widgets that go into dishwashers, saws, cars, automatic door openers, ect)

Also, to anyone who supports trump, please listen to this.

Demagogues are toxic to constitutional democracies (i.e. America) because they have no respect for constitutions, which should be concerning to people of any party.

Now, back to paddling! Please provide a follow up review in a few months too!

I can’t stand the platitudes
in favor of a protectionist market. Guess who else has protectionist markets? China and Russia.

Would you buy a Russian or Chinese car? Me neither.

Z&J website and company video

They appear to have a huge line of canoe, kayak and SUP paddles made from a variety of materials, plus many accessories.

Many Z&J products are available on Amazon, including a carbon bent shaft outrigger canoe paddle with palm grip for $125. Prices seem less on ebay.

Death of US Steel

– Last Updated: Jul-25-16 5:47 PM EST –

It's a mistake and an ignorance of history to blame the death of steel production in the USA on free trade. I have lived in Pittsburgh since the 1960's and am well aware (as are most people who bother to investigate beyond the sound bites of political manipulators) that it was the domestic steel manufacturers themselves that largely contributed to the demise of the industry.

Unlike their competitors in Asia and Europe, they refused to upgrade their production techniques to make them more efficient and cost effective as well as to improve quality -- when the mills closed here they were using the exact same plants and methods that had been in use before World War II. Pittsburgh based US Steel chose to buy Marathon Oil and invest in other unrelated strategies rather than modernize their core business. And the antipathy and stubborness between the unions and management did not help. In fact, steel production in the US has rebounded since 1988 with the upgrades to methods making them 3 times more productive (requiring less personnel, which was one reason the unions fought these upgrades.)

Economies go through cycles -- we are no longer rebuilding the world after a Great Depression and a world war. Heavy industry is no longer the backbone of the economy and is never likely to be so again. Even another world war (which is not out of the question in today's political climate) would not change that.

As has been pointed out, many of the "displaced" blue collar workers who are being drawn into the fantasy of the magical restoration of factory jobs are physically too old and too out of shape to perform that work anyway. The fact is that there ARE blue collar jobs that are going begging in this country -- I have worked for 35 years in the construction industry and many of the skilled trades continue to hurt for qualified candidates. I have personally worked with programs trying to train and place "displaced" workers and, honestly, a depressing number of them seem to prefer to live on government sponsored "disability" than enter another field. Ironically, it is often the people who rely on government sponsored support like Social Security disability, Medicaid and Vet benefits who reflexively rail against "big government" and support candidates in parties that have squelched organized labor and traditionally reduced social programs. Why is that?

And for all those whining about how we need dirty energy like coal, petroleum and gas to create jobs, the solid statistics are that employment at all levels of alternate energy technology is booming. One of the major electrical contractors I worked for who used to have coal plant maintenance and construction as their primary business has switched in the past decade to wind and solar and is wildly successful with it.

It irks me when the same people who fret about loss of manufacturing production in the US are the SAME ones who spend most of their money at horror shows like Walmart, which has single-handedly destroyed many local economies and driven countless domestic manufacturers out of business with their strong-arming and non-competitive policies.

I know political bashing is discouraged on the forums outside of B & B so I am not going to get too deeply into that. But I would caution anyone who is apt to be seduced by grandiose promises to take a critical look at the reality of what is being offered. If it was as easy as the current crop of politicos would have you believe to magically create jobs and prosperity, EVERY administration would have been able to do this.

We are inextricably tied to the global economy both for raw materials and for the markets to which we sell. Isolationism has NEVER worked for the US, neither politically nor economically. The bullying tactics that seem to be promised by one of the current candidates will backfire tremendously and unravel a century of progress in establishing our productive cooperation with the rest of the world. They would probably trigger a financial depression and could even lead to war.

The GOP platform contains NO workable constructive plans to improve employment or create a more favorable climate for labor and domestic businesses. The hypocrisy exhibited by born-wealthy offshore investors claiming they represent the interests of working people would be laughable were not so many desperate people falling for it without investigating the facts and motives behind this kind of manipulation of public opinion.

Those of you who really believe the GOP candidate truly has the best interests of America in mind ought to start by reading this about his deep financial and personal ties to Russia. This is all a matter of public record, by the way.

thank you
I’m also tired of the self-serving revisionist history. Good post that counters all that.

Auto Production
Is it okay and that auto makers move to Mexico. I believe Americans can and would be able to make cars as they would to make steel if someone leveled the field. A consumption and service only economy can not survive recessions and economics down turns because the jobs are non essential which is why we need manufacturing jobs. Imagine the great depression if it was only a service economy. In the great depression there were farmers and factories. Now someone cuts your hair and you do their taxes and round and round. Know anyone that actually “makes” anything anymore.

They tried leveling the field by
lowering American wages and benefits to be closer to non-US workers.


– Last Updated: Jul-25-16 3:14 PM EST –

"Know anyone that actually 'makes' anything anymore."

Michiganders do craft beer quite nicely, adding 6.6 billion to the state's economy (so say the beer experts)

2015 stats: 1,152 jobs for brewers, 4,250 jobs for wholesalers and 30,149 jobs for retailers, generating a total of $1.04 billion in wages.

O bring back the days of sweatshops
and poverty for all.

the good ole days when you sold your soul to the company store.

the GOP has bluster, sound bytes but no plan to reverse anything but our servitude toward them.