Wood paddle storage?

Question for all you wood savvy folks.

My recently acquired Greenland paddle is leaning up against the wall of my Barbi Dreamcastle sized bachelorette pad. My Unc came over the other day and told me: “That pretty piece-a wood ya got leanin up against tha wall is gonna warp, darlin. It looks important. You sure you want to reshape it?”

So here’s the stoooopid question. Will the paddle warp if its leaned up against the wall for a few weeks? Should I find a place to lay it flat? (i.e. make a place…I have to maneuver around the boats in my living room as it is. I was considering cramming it under my bed to live with the dust bunnies but I sort of like looking at my new blade.) I’m thinking Unc is right, and he knows a heck of alot more about wood than I do.



Solid or laminated?
I would think that a laminated stick would be less prone to warpage, but not immune. If you like to look at it (and who doesn’t line to admire wood?) consider mounting a pair of padded hooks on your wall, spaced about the same as the loom measurement. Periodically flip it over to eliminate any potential bending. Don’t mount it over a fireplace or a heater!



its solid.
Didn’t want to fork over the extra bucks for laminated. (I’m pretty tough on gear and I knew it’d get all banged up in my ungraceful hands - couldn’t see spending more on “pretty”).

Wall mounting sounds like an intelligent option. I think I have ONE space it would fit; above my bed. A paddle headboard…sounds good to me! Heck…maybe I’ll put the Onno and the Werner up there too. Get em out of my limited living room space.


Just came to me when you mentioned additional paddles. You could probably lay your hands on a three or four space rack that would hold paddles in felt-lined cradles. Would look great above your bed.

Now I’m entertaining the notion too…


a great idea! I know just the coonass I can get one from too…UNC!!!



One drawback…
I forsee being woken up in the middle of the night by one of my cats attempting to leap from the bed to the top paddle, failing, and the paddle(s) and cat crashing down onto my head.

Truely a rude awakening.


…but surely funny in the retelling!


– Last Updated: Dec-29-04 3:31 PM EST –

Gunracks seemed like a good idea, but most gun racks are formed to fit the butt of the rifle, so they don't hold something straight, like a paddle, level.

Some do. Just check it out first.

There is no way to cat proof a house. I gave up on that a long time ago...

Hmmmm Good point
I assume that racks are still sold for racking guns upside down…As I recall those had level hooks.


I’d be happy to “cat proof” my body! Feeling…faint…from…blood…losssssss…

Hang 'em
Being the recipient of a nice paddle hanger at Raystown for 1st place in the Goofy Hat division My advice is against a lean. Nature abhors a vacuum.


Upright storage should be fine

– Last Updated: Dec-29-04 6:18 PM EST –

When the force of gravity works cross-wise to the paddle shaft and not all parts of the shaft are supported from below, there is a definite bending force constantly at work, so if you store the paddle horizontal and supported at just two points (like a rack), nearly all of the paddle's weight is contributing to that bending force. Is this enough to make the shaft bend if it sits there long enough? Maybe, maybe not, but when the force of gravity is lengthwise to the paddle shaft, there is no bending force at all, so vertical storage is safer. If you really want to play it safe, HANG it in a vertical position, so the forces within the shaft are not just lengthwise, but also in tension. If it were my paddle, I'd just keep the amount of "lean" to a minimum. Keep the bottom end pretty close to the wall and it will be fine, at least for the first 75 to 100 years or so (after that, all bets are off).

vinyl covered hooks
work fairly well but the paddle has a tendenancy to turn and then fall out. I made a bracket out of 1x4 with two mounted perpendicular to another so it can be attached to the wall. In the two that project from the wall cut a notch 1/4" to 1/2" wide on both pieces. This will keep the paddle from turning. I made mine long enough to hold 4 european paddles. My GP came later so I just made a loop of nylon cord and hang it from a hook. One end of the cord is a slip knot to get the paddle in and out.


I agree… I’ve stored solid and
laminated paddles in my basement, leaning against various walls, without any warping problems, for almost 15 years. Prior to that time, they were stored in a damp shed or garage. The forces involved are small. If warping occurs, it may be due to poor wood selection by the builder, followed by uneven water absorption from the atmosphere. That seems to be a rare occurrence, but might be a bit more likely with a cheap solid wood paddle. If your paddle did warp, you would be better off without it.

If you want it to be an inexpensive wood
holder, go to Home Depot and purchase a wooden broom and mop holder or make your own. It is a piece of wood with a bunch of wooden dowels in it. Cost is about $10.

You only need one if you want to hang your paddles vertically, two if horizontal is your thing.

Coat Rack
I have a couple of old coat racks, the kind that use pegs sticking out from a board. My assortment of paddles hang from that with the blade side up. Works great and have been using that for the last year.


I store mine standing on end

– Last Updated: Dec-30-04 11:06 AM EST –

It's not a problem. I also have friends that store theirs horizontal and they don't have problems with them either.

Cedar will change shape a bit if you put weight on it, but it comes right back as soon as it's flexed a few times. I've seen this when drying cedar 2x4's set on a couple of small blocks in the center. The stick sags at the ends, but if I flip it over and let it set, it straightens out and eventually sags in the other direction. This is typical of wood that has little or no internal stress in it.

If the wood has internal stresses and is going to actually warp (change shape permanently), it will do so regardless of how you store it and in the case of your paddle, it would have done so by now.

Store your paddle in the most convenient manner. Keeping it as upright as possible is probably best, but in the long run, it's not likely to matter. Going through a lot of special or expensive gyrations is a waste of time and money.

to you all for your suggestions. I think I’m going to get some pegs-loom width-and hang the GP above my bed. (How romantic…lets the boyfriend dujour know what REALLY comes first in my life, right?)