Which Mid Range Paddle???^

Places, technique, kayaks, safety, the sea...
Post Reply
GeeCee
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 11:14 pm
Location: Fareham

Which Mid Range Paddle???^

Post by GeeCee » Sun Mar 13, 2011 8:51 pm

I have been paddling for about a year now and am looking to upgrade my cheap "just to get me started" gear now that i know that i want to continue in the sport.

I paddle a plastic sea kayak and have more of a high angle technique.

I am about 5' 8" and weigh about 12 stone. My kayak is 22" wide so i guess i would be looking at a 215cm - 220cm

Does anyone have any opinions on the best mid range sea kayak paddle i.e. £120 - £200?

I know this is not an easy question to answer, but am looking for peoples' experiences rather than "you MUST buy this".

I quite like the look of the Ainsworth RTM 108 Silver Sea Touring paddle at about £150.

Has anyone used one of these?

All advice/opinions would be greatly appreciated.

User avatar
snapper
Posts: 366
Joined: Tue Aug 26, 2008 9:50 am
Location: Lowestoft, Suffolk

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by snapper » Sun Mar 13, 2011 9:39 pm

Carlisle Enchantment Carbon.
Chatham 17-Scupper Pro-RRRapido
2011 Launches 102

Jonny-the-ski
Posts: 238
Joined: Sat Nov 08, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by Jonny-the-ski » Sun Mar 13, 2011 10:18 pm

Ainsworth do a brilliant range:
http://www.ainsworthpaddles.co.uk/Kayak ... ngSea.html

I abuse mine more than most, as they get heavy surf use every day, not weekend play. Best value there is IMO!

Jon Wood
Posts: 558
Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2005 12:23 pm
Location: London

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by Jon Wood » Mon Mar 14, 2011 9:50 am

At the top end of your price range, you could get a 4-piece Lendal with robust N12 blades. Think Kinetic touring or Nordkapp.
Decent build, popular with individuals & tough enough for centre use.
Or a glass-bladed Werner, maybe look at the Shuna.
Or a bent-shaft reinforced nylon bladed Werner.

As with all these threads, the advice is to borrow/trial different bits of kit and see what works for you.

User avatar
MikeB
Posts: 7958
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2003 9:44 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by MikeB » Mon Mar 14, 2011 12:40 pm

Yes, try, try and try.

I think a 220 will be too long. Thats what I use and I'm a big 6'2".

I've had good experiences with Epic paddles, and am also a fan of Lendal. The Kinetic Touring is a great blade. The N/kapp is a very big blade!! My recommendation would be a multipart, cranked shaft (ideally in carbon - a little spendy - but such a difference) and the fibreglass blades. These are lighter than the N12's - in fact, there's not much between them and the full carbon equivalents.

People speak very well of Werners - they dont seem to suit me though.

Buying 2nd hand could be a good way to maximise your budget and get what you want of course.

Bards
Posts: 736
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:23 am
Location: Dorset

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by Bards » Mon Mar 14, 2011 1:01 pm

MikeB wrote:Yes, try, try and try.

I think a 220 will be too long. Thats what I use and I'm a big 6'2".

I've had good experiences with Epic paddles, and am also a fan of Lendal. The Kinetic Touring is a great blade. The N/kapp is a very big blade!! My recommendation would be a multipart, cranked shaft (ideally in carbon - a little spendy - but such a difference) and the fibreglass blades. These are lighter than the N12's - in fact, there's not much between them and the full carbon equivalents.

People speak very well of Werners - they dont seem to suit me though.

Buying 2nd hand could be a good way to maximise your budget and get what you want of course.
2nd hand cranked Werner Shunas were an inspired (well, lucky...) purchase by me at a similar stage. I'm about the same size as you and would agree with MikeB ref length. I also have 2nd hand Lendal Kinetic Touring (straight carbon shaft and N12 blades) and I'm looking to cut it down to be the spare splits, and when I do so intend to reduce it to 210, maybe even a tad less if I'm brave enough...they were my first half-decent ones for harder trips, and the combo of a long stick and unadjustable feather didn't do my tendons any favours, though I love the design and quality overall. Please note, these were some of the last of the Scottish-made Lendals (plenty of Johnsons discounted now in the shops, but I've no idea how bomb they are...)
Any splits you can get cheaply enough will serve as good spares at a later date if you decide to go for Fandango £300 jobs as your mains and plan to keep a reseve on deck... if they have variable feather you can also play around to see what suits (which may in fact be a variable degree as you may like to alter with conditions, who knows?). Also agree ref Nkapp and similar blades; in my limited experience any big blade which discourages a healthy high cadence can cause problems when you're giving it sustained welly.
Bards

User avatar
Jim
Posts: 13497
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2002 2:14 pm
Location: Dumbarton

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by Jim » Mon Mar 14, 2011 1:29 pm

MikeB wrote: (ideally in carbon - a little spendy - but such a difference)
Whilst I am personally a big fan of carbon shafts (well G1F), this is another option you have to try (borrowing friends paddles is probably the easiest way, although you may find all your freinds use the same paddles), because some people simply cannot live with the spring in a carbon shaft and could save themselves a wedge by using a cheaper shaft it if suits them better.

SeaKayakingSouthWest
Posts: 146
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 4:13 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by SeaKayakingSouthWest » Mon Mar 14, 2011 3:26 pm

Hiya - I often advise paddlers re paddle choice. More expensive usually means lighter - good if you get shoulder problems. If you paddle with a high angle go for shorter shaft - 210cm.
I use Werner Cyprus or Shuna and I have never known anyone to be disappointed after suggesting one of these for them.
Happy Paddling

GeeCee
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 11:14 pm
Location: Fareham

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by GeeCee » Mon Mar 14, 2011 4:52 pm

Thanks for everyone's replies.

The Shuna does look like a nice option!

For some reason i just had it in my head that i would prefer a single piece shaft. I guess it is a mental thing to do with strength.

Do the 2 piece Werners give any problems with strength, connecting, getting loose over time etc?

SeaKayakingSouthWest
Posts: 146
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 4:13 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by SeaKayakingSouthWest » Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:13 pm

No - they are brilliant. I do recommend people wet the ends before putting then together, rinse them with fresh water whenever possible and avoid lubricants. Mine have been used and abused for years with no problems. Just got back from a week in Plas y Brenin where the Shuna is their sea kayak paddle of choice and they are pleased with them too.
You wouldn't know they are splits when you paddle with them and the split has the added advantages of easy storage/transport, and allows you to adjust the feather angle - even changing to left hander if lending it to someone. And of course they make good spare paddles on the boat.
Cheers
Rhoda

Bards
Posts: 736
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:23 am
Location: Dorset

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by Bards » Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:23 pm

GeeCee wrote:Thanks for everyone's replies.

The Shuna does look like a nice option!

For some reason I just had it in my head that I would prefer a single piece shaft. I guess it is a mental thing to do with strength.

Do the 2 piece Werners give any problems with strength, connecting, getting loose over time etc?
I can only comment on my particular one, but that's been pretty faultless... it stopped locking properly for a while (lesson learned- rinse it esp if a sandy beacher!) and the local shop sent it back to Werner who fully reconditioned it for the tenner's postage. Has does some fair miles over the last 2 1/2 years, and shows no apparent wear in either blades or connection. When the locking started playing up, I surfed around web for advice and didn't really find anything, which hopefully indicates it's rare and only happens to those whose kit care always asks for trouble... there must now be more than enough Werners around that if there was an issue with quality control it would be very well known by now. The nicest paddles I've ever wrangled for a borrow were their full carbon-core Ikelos; do not try, or in comparison anything even vaguely within budget will feel like they've got a sack of spuds on each end!!!
Oh, I also try to paddle high-angle like yourself, and the Shuna is ideal for it, as I'm sure you're aware.

Get as nice a paddle as you can, and I've found that in trying to justify the investment I've worked harder on decent forward stroke technique (that may, of course, be entirely delusional... Bards

SeaKayakingSouthWest
Posts: 146
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 4:13 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by SeaKayakingSouthWest » Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:36 pm

Just a note - the ikelos mentioned above has a bigger blade area - my husband uses these - they are great but I would only suggest them if you have pretty beefy muscles. I find for most people - blokes included - the larger blade size puts stress on tendons after a long paddle. The full carbon foam core ones I LOVE are the cyprus and these correspond to the blade area of the shuna. Cheers Rhoda

Ran
Posts: 82
Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:06 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by Ran » Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:40 pm

Hi,
A paddle much over looked in the Werner range is the Tybee...its a bit cheaper than the others I believe, its for a mid range high angled paddler, I use them with crank shaft, the carbon infused ones, very good.
cheers
Ran

Dan@Tiderace
Posts: 67
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 2:23 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by Dan@Tiderace » Tue Mar 15, 2011 1:47 pm

An awful lot of people who try the Epic paddles get on with them very well.

The Relaxed Touring in hybrid glass is just over your £200 budget, but very well put together with the added benefit that it adjusts in both feather, and length by 10cm.

ian johnston
Posts: 658
Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2007 7:36 pm
Location: Aberdeenshire

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by ian johnston » Tue Mar 15, 2011 8:37 pm

Hi GC

Another recommendation for Werner Cyprus or Shuna.

I have one of each; and they're really, really good to paddle with. I'm about your height, paddle a boat with a 21" beam and use 210cm paddles - 220 I think will feel quite long and inhibit a high angle stroke somewhat. Some manufacturers have a fitting guide on their websites which is worth a try.

The Cyprus (the foam core carbon version) is just a joy to paddle. It feels ridiculously light but is tough as nails, the edging material protects very well against rocks - I do quite a bit of rockhopping and the paddle is pretty much unscathed after 3 years. One feature of the foam core is that it's very buoyant, great for bracing, and seems to "clip" out of the water naturally at the end of each stroke. The blade size on both versions seems just right for a blend of power and manoeuvrability.

I bought a second hand Shuna as a spare paddle from a regular contributor to the forum and have used it a fair bit when I've lent out my Cyprus for others to try. It does feel very slightly heavier and less responsive but is still a great paddle. Up the thread a bit it was mentioned that carbon can feel a bit springy; I lent the Shuna back to it's original owner for a season because he found the carbon version was aggravating a tendon injury. It seemed that the glass blade was a little easier on the injury.

The joints on both paddles have been faultless; I just rinse well in fresh water after every trip.

Definitely worth checking out is the Podcast on "Picking a Paddle" by Danny Mongno of Werner, it's on Simon Willis' website at

http://web.me.com/simon.willis/SeaKayak ... casts.html

Yes, both the Werner paddles (particularly the Cyprus) are expensive, as are top end offerings from most manufacturers, but I felt it was worth stretching to get the right paddle - after all you'll be holding it all the time each time you go out! As has been said here - try lots before committing the cash

Regards

Ian

User avatar
alanshunter
Posts: 108
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2008 9:09 pm
Location: NORTH BERWICK

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by alanshunter » Wed Mar 16, 2011 12:04 am

Aquabound Manta Ray is a nice paddle without breaking the bank great weight and nice blade in the water.
Feather adjustment is good if you choose the adjustable ferrule and they come in a range of sizes from around £160
Image
http://www.aquabound.com/product_type/t ... ak-paddles
weigh in at 836g not much more than the Shuna really and a wee bit cheaper.

GeeCee
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 11:14 pm
Location: Fareham

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by GeeCee » Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:29 pm

Thanks again to everyone for their replies.

I got a great deal on a 2 piece Werner Shuna paddle from Woodmill in Southampton in the end.

Took it out today....wow fantastic.

After 2 hours on the water i still felt great.

I got the 215cm carbon small shaft ( i have fat hands with small sausage fingers. Guess the growth went elsewhere.), amber fibreglass blades.

What a great choice.

KInd Regards to all,

GeeCee

User avatar
sensiblesimon
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Nov 29, 2009 11:56 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???^

Post by sensiblesimon » Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:06 pm

A late contribution to this thread!
I had a similar question but wanted some paddles which would double up as bulletproof sea paddles and to get me started in marathon kayaking. I didn't want wings as they are too restrictive. I have an old set of two piece Lendal SF Kinetic Touring Blades but have found these too bendy and small for hard flat water paddling. Werners look either too expensive or at the cheaper end the blade areas are too small.

I couldnt find any reviews of Streamlyte paddles despite them being featured prominently in the Brookbank catalogue. I eventually decided to get some Streamlyte Visage paddles in the Enthusiast spec (N12 blades and 215cm single piece semi carbon shaft). These are slightly bigger race development orientated paddles than the old Lendal Nordkapps. They are similar in weight to the old Lendals but are stiffer, particularly in the shaft. Impressions from a month of regular usage are that at £125 from Kayaks North West they are an excellent buy. I got them made to 70 degree feather and they arrived in less than a week after ordering. On the water they feel good although due to their weight dont encourage a fast paddle rate. I tend to paddle with slower more powerful strokes so they suit me fine. Have dabbled a bit in a WWR and also in a GP kayak with them and they feel good. They feel very solid in the water and don't flutter as much as SF Nordkapps. At the price they are good value and work well.

The Streamlyte Kinetic Touring would be good too. They have a smaller blade surface area more geared for long distance touring and area available in two blade sizes.

The higher end glass and carbon paddles look good but are more expensive. It would be good to hear some feedback about these before considering buying them.

The Streamlyte range looks good value as an alternative to Werners and Aquabound. Mitchells look good too but were outside my present price range and the blade surface areas looked a bit small.

tannys
Posts: 95
Joined: Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:16 pm

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???

Post by tannys » Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:24 pm

Ran wrote:Hi,
A paddle much over looked in the Werner range is the Tybee...its a bit cheaper than the others I believe, its for a mid range high angled paddler, I use them with crank shaft, the carbon infused ones, very good.
cheers
Ran
I have a Tybee and have been very happy with it, I think Werner still have a paddle selector thingy
"Paddle solo, sleep tandem"

User avatar
TechnoEngineer
Posts: 3292
Joined: Mon May 12, 2008 7:47 pm
Location: Berks, Hants, Essex

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???^

Post by TechnoEngineer » Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:32 pm

Be careful with splits; I've managed to break the shafts on two of them when abusing them performing a Hutchinson storm roll.

I'd echo the above in saying 210cm is long enough for your height.
XL-Burn-3 / Monstar / Kodiak / My Videos

User avatar
Chris C
Posts: 910
Joined: Sun May 08, 2005 6:37 pm
Location: South Wales
Contact:

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???^

Post by Chris C » Thu Sep 29, 2011 2:22 pm

I have a set of 210cm Ikelos crank for sale as I am not getting out in the sea boats. They are in very good condition same height and weight as you, looking at £200 with a paddle bag. I got these after tryying out the Shuna Corryvrekhans etc but as I use foam core on the river theses feel alot nicer and similar to what Im used to. I have pictures I can email you, you're welcome to come have a look.

Cheers
Chris

User avatar
MikeB
Posts: 7958
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2003 9:44 pm
Location: Scotland

Re: Which Mid Range Paddle???^

Post by MikeB » Thu Sep 29, 2011 3:58 pm

TechnoEngineer wrote:Be careful with splits; I've managed to break the shafts on two of them when abusing them performing a Hutchinson storm roll.
What on earth were you doing to them??

I've broken two paddles over the years - in both cases they were Lendals, with Padloks - in both cases I slipped or fell getting out of the boat and landed on the paddle. Both subsequently broke shortly afterwards, but the breaks were between the joint and the blade.

Certainly anything with an old-fashioned spring loaded button joint would (I would think) be susecptible to breaking at the joint.

Mike.

Post Reply