So here is my problem. I like the carbon bent shaft shuna fiberglass blade, and shuna carbon blade, and also the Cyprus. I weigh 260 and worry about the blade strength wile using the paddle for entering and exiting my kayak. I like the mid size blade for high angle paddlers. Which of these is the strongest?
easiest is to not start bad habbits…learn how to get into a kayak and out without using the paddle.
If you become dependant on the paddle for getting in and out…you’ll never be able to do a sucessfull surf landing or launch.
that has been a poorly handed out way to get beginners on the water , that should have never been taught.
as best I can tell it started with Pawletta entering from docks to do rolling shows in 19 inch wide kayaks with ocean cockpits back in the late 20’s or early 30’s
it’s not at all necessary and puts the focus on all the wrong things.
If you want a paddle that is really hard to break, get one of the one-piece whitewater paddles like the Powerhouse. I have learned the hard way that that is the way to go in the surf.
But as the previous responder suggested, you should not be putting any force at all on your paddle getting in and out of the boat.
Straddle the boat, then lower your butt into the seat. Your hands grab the sides of the boat, near the back of the cockpit. Then tuck in each leg. You can learn this, you can practice on dry land. Then learn how to do it from a dock, which slightly harder but you will get the hang of it.
Recently I saw a Werner blade that had broken in a Class 4 tidal overfall. Nothing wrong with the blade, the force just exceeded the design strength.
If you weigh 260 lbs and are leaning on your paddle to enter & exit your boat, you can easily exert enough force to break the blade. If you insist on doing a paddle brace, use it as backup only.
Why waste the money on a good paddle if you’re going to break it?
what Roy said ^^
you don’t need a paddle to get in. I’ll hazard a guess than more paddles - by any maker - get broken while doing this outdated and unnecessary technique.
Learn sidesaddle, or straddle, and drop your butt first. One leg goes in, and the other. Hold your paddle in your belly while you do it or park it in the perimeter lines (the former is better in waves). Get out leg(s) first, butt up and sit on the back deck briefly while you lever up and use your legs to complete your exit.
Bonus: if you practice the straddle, then start doing it in deeper and deeper water, you get more practice in balance and have a pretty good foundation for learning a self-rescue called the cowboy or scramble, as this way of getting in is the last stage of that rescue.
There’s more on this in the pnet home page, and plenty of youtube videos. Try it!
using the paddle
I somewhat agree with not using the paddle
With a 36" inseam and large feet the only sea kayak I’ve been able to get into butt first is a Romany XL, ok their are some others but I wouldn’t want to paddle them so why bother.
My carbon Werner has stood up fine and I use it to enter and exit the kayak. Just don’t put all your weight on it and you should be fine.
Wow you guys … THANK YOU !
for saying all that.
Sit on the back of the boat instead
Then slide in. As I recall you are a large person, so you may not be able to drop seat in then bring in legs under the deck like some (such as me and friendlyfire). But we have a friend who is a tight squeeze in most boats - he's just a big guy - and he gets on the back deck then slides into much smaller cockpits than I suspect you'd find likely right now.
I kinda understand why this approach is taught to some beginners - it's a good idea for someone with a bad knee or the other age-related stuff that the new crop of white haired paddlers has to deal with. But it sets paddlers up to be so darned limited in where and how they can get in and out of a boat. It also really clogs up a group launch when paddler after paddler has to take up the whole space turning their boat sideways. I agree that this should have been dropped as a universal idea.
i get into my kayak by straddling the boat also…the paddle has always been in the stabilizing position, sometimes i don’t even rely on it…but now i have a new way to try. Thanks, anytime i can improve on a simple little thing , i love it. It’s all about being one with your boat.
we know Pat, we know '-)
you champion the cause of innocent paddles everywhere, groaning under the weight of large butts and tentative souls (not you OP!)
A subject near and dear to you, being the maker of some damn fine ones yourself.
since the OP is considering an Eddyline Journey or a CD Kestrel, he’ll have a nice large cockpit in either to allow him to learn this technique. And spare his new paddle
ANOTHER one that makes builders cringe
Pushing on the coaming to get in / out and worst of all … SITTING ON IT !!!
Even if the bulkhead is right there, still super loading that tiny surface area the poor coaming is tryin to stay on with. Eventually it will begin to break lose. Don’t think its happening ? Push down on it and take a look under there @ the bond line.
Who said the coaming?
The back deck behind the cockpit is not the coaming. Yeah you have to slide over it but that’s it.
Then again, we are used to those horribly made Brit boats and don’t have to worry about this stuff.
Some OCD types will use glasscloth
to attach the coaming, or even lay up an entire rim with little slips of glass and Kevlar.
Dear Celia, my posts are directed to
people reading this. If I am addressing you, I will say so directly.
Edit to add > The back deck or anywhere in the perimeter, near and next to the coaming for all references as per (over) weighting coaming IS the SAME ...Weight still goes over / right next to it. Possible to miss it on dry land but flopping around out in the waves ?
Yep, then it is part OF
not part ON the deck … Will hold way better.
I us the paddle but…
only as an outrigger for support on the water. I never lean or shift my weight all the way onto it. I also never use it to brace off the bottom or on rocks. That’s just plain dumb. Many kayaks must be entered feet first so it does help. We have seen our Inuit visitors demonstrate this so it can’t be all that wrong.
in the eternal quest of having lighter kayaks some manufacturers lay up their boats on the light side.
If the paddler is very careful most coamings are fine but in the heat of the battle I have cracked a few coamings despite NEVER sitting on them.
If the coaming is designed with a flat flange (no 3D profile to it) chances are it will be less strong that a curved profile one.
I had to reinforce a few coamings that just could not take normal handling of paddling and surfing.
However a coaming will only be as strong as its bond to the deck. Some manufacturers at times skimp there and occasionally there are some voids and occasioanlly the glue fails resulting in a loose/detached coaming.
A good friend of mine went to the extend of REMOVING the whole coaming and reinforced it with carbon cloth to bond it back securely to the deck (full details: http://gnarlydognews.blogspot.com/2009/05/shop-eye-candy.html ).
BTW, I find using the paddle as levering support to enter a kayak a very cumbersome technique…
OK - but for the OPer…
Sorry if I was too snappy then. But seriously - if the OPer finds that they are unable to get butt into the boat and then pull legs in, what option do they have other than sliding in from the back if they are also not to use their paddle for major support? I can’t think of one myself anyway.