Paddle floats^

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Mark R
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Paddle floats^

Post by Mark R » Sun May 21, 2006 6:20 pm

I've had one rammed down the side of my seat (festering away) for two years, but never actually used it until today, when we were playing around with different rescue options.

I clipped it on to a blade and used it to aid re-entry and roll. This seemed to work okay, although you then had a heavy bag full of water clipped to one blade. Not ideal but at least I was upright.

A friend used her float and paddle as a kind of 'outrigger' to scramble back in. Clumsy but it worked.


Did we miss anything? Anything else to know about paddle floats?
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Owen
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Re: Paddle floats

Post by Owen » Sun May 21, 2006 7:29 pm

MarkR wrote:

Did we miss anything? Anything else to know about paddle floats?

No, that about sums up the paddle float. The only real problem with them is, as you put it, they get stuffed down the side of your seat festering away for years and when you come to use them in anger; they’ve split. But anything that is flexible enough for you to blow up whilst swimming beside your kayak will be quite flimsy. So whilst they can be handy it doesn’t pay to rely on them.
Last edited by Owen on Sun May 21, 2006 7:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

andreadawn
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Post by andreadawn » Sun May 21, 2006 7:33 pm

The standard paddle float re-entry as described in virtually all the books is laughable in any sort of waves. I know, I've tried it a lot.

I find it works quite well to assist with a re-entry and roll for those of us who can't do that without some sort of aid. As you say Mark, you're then stuck with a bag full of water on the end of your paddle. Not a problem whilst you're pumping the boat dry, but tricky when you try to remove it. It's probably the most awkward bit of any paddle float recovery.

Even better I find for anyone whose not too heavy (I'm 75 kg) is a technique I described under 'Paddle Float Variation' (sorry, don't know how to link to other threads). It's similar to the re-entry roll idea but you don't end up with a cockpit full of water.

If you've practised with it a lot and understand the limitations of the concept, I'd say it's a useful backup to have. I've had my two for about five years and although I've used them a lot for practise there's no sign of wear and tear.

Andrea.

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Post by CaileanMac » Sun May 21, 2006 11:40 pm

Andrea / MarkR

Rather than try to recover the paddle from being jamed under decklines - simply leave it and use your spilts (joined) to paddle out of the area which caused your dunking with a element of stabilty. What ever way you choice to use a paddle float - the skill will be only as good as the amount of practice you put in. Yes there's limitations to all of the variants but it's better to have several ways to get back into your kayak rather than just one or two.

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Post by John W » Mon May 22, 2006 12:09 am

Or alternatively, use the paddle float on your splits and then 'abandon' those as you paddle off to safety with your regular blades.

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Post by Bertie.. » Tue May 23, 2006 12:56 pm

John W wrote:Or alternatively, use the paddle float on your splits and then 'abandon' those as you paddle off to safety with your regular blades.
Connect your towline to the splits, then when you paddle off they'll trail behind you.

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Sharky
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Post by Sharky » Tue May 23, 2006 1:55 pm

The great paddle float debate continues.............

Some people swear by them, some people hate them

The important thing, as I see it, is you are exploring what you can do with it, discovery the times that a paddle float can be best applied and the limitations

I was coaching some folk at the weekend who had all manner of devices and gadgets for rescue and recovery. When I asked how effective these things where, out of genuine curiosity as I'd not seen some of the items before, the reply "we're waiting to find out at the next symposium when xxxxx is running a rescue session".

The plan was altered to incorporate a bit of self rescue with gadgets. If you think inflating a paddle float takes time try double floats in cold water that then need to be clipped round the boat (perhaps it was meant to be the otherway round)

Solves the paddle problem, adds stability to a 'wobbly' kayaker but doesn't really help get you home as the drag they create is enormous

My point..... whatever you own, fancy owning, see somebody else have on their boat...... try it out, see if you can use it and then if you buy one , practice in the conditions where you are likely to need it (cooled, wet, tired, hungry)...... and don't wait for the next 'expert' to come along and show you as there is a chance they don't how to use it either
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Post by MikeB » Tue May 23, 2006 4:08 pm

Sharky wrote: The plan was altered to incorporate a bit of self rescue with gadgets. If you think inflating a paddle float takes time try double floats in cold water that then need to be clipped round the boat (perhaps it was meant to be the otherway round)
Oh no! Don't - - -

Can you imagine trying to get that contraption in place in the sort of conditions you'd need them? I can just see it now - - - glug / swim / "mayday, mayday"

Mike.

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Post by Bertie.. » Tue May 23, 2006 4:47 pm

Sharky wrote: "we're waiting to find out at the next symposium when xxxxx is running a rescue session".
Well I hope their not thinking of the Jersey symposium and the rescue session I'm helping to run ;-)

I have a KISS approach to rescues, particularly in the rough water in which you generally might encounter situations!

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Sharky
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Post by Sharky » Tue May 23, 2006 5:03 pm

In all fairness I forgot to ask but there do happen to be three events going on that I know of - Jersey, Northumberland, Stackpole so who knows where they may end up

They did seem very concerned about things after having read this article
Canoe and Kayak Criminal Rescue Safety Scam: 1500 American and Canadian Adults and Children Die Agonizing Deaths Since 1993

I'd like to think that I showed them that KISS really does work but some people take more convincing than others
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Post by Bertie.. » Tue May 23, 2006 5:14 pm

Fantastic - I must get round to reading more of that at some point.. I particularly liked
Unless you want to sell a rescue safety scam. And you think that torturing people to death, even young children, with expensive and deadly instruction is OK. Even fun.

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Post by Dave Thomas » Tue May 23, 2006 5:37 pm

Oh dear - here we go again!

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Post by Bertie.. » Wed May 24, 2006 8:44 am

Sorry Dave, I missed out last time - possibly because I tend not to read any thread past two pages (one if I can help it).

I'll learn to recognise dragged-up discussions and not to encourage them... one day!

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Post by Dave Thomas » Wed May 24, 2006 9:40 am

No - goes further back than that! Right back to the hi-jacking of the newsgroup Alt Rec Paddles (?) by 'Sponson-Guy' and his accusations of institutionalised murder (or similar), which directly or otherwise led to the foundation of this forum.

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Post by Bertie.. » Wed May 24, 2006 9:43 am

Dave Thomas wrote:Alt Rec Paddles (?)

Dave Thomas
wow, that far back... You're not gonna start talking about why Archie & Gopher Space was much better than today's web are you?? ;-)

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Post by Dave Thomas » Wed May 24, 2006 10:36 am

I wasn't!

Dave Thomas

ps were they? ;-)

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Paddle floats

Post by adrian j pullin » Wed May 24, 2006 12:01 pm

Hi

We played with one of these a few weeks ago in the pool. We found one good use for it. Helps locatae the paddle on the surface when teaching rolling. We also found lots of problems. They boil down to "could you do that much faffing about when you are really in trouble? I think I'll take one on the next 4* session I run and see how people get on in real sea.

I am a big fan of KISS, particularly Gene Simmons!

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Post by Bertie.. » Wed May 24, 2006 1:02 pm

KISS was yesterday, I'm more into the LORDI approach - Learn Or Risk Drowning In'it (excuse the yoof spk )

There's also the Risk Homeostatis argument (aka Target Risk, Risk Compensation Theory) to introduce, which in this context could equate to 'by placing reliance on this piece of rescue kit, I can paddle in harsher, more remote environments or paddle with less people'.

By using the KISS approach, combined with the LORDI ;-) approach, I prefer to have a suite of rescue approaches both self & group approaches that limit the need to add further complexity.

Afterall, there's times when I can't even remember my name when I hit the surface let alone the ten steps it takes to set up a paddle float rescue!!

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Post by CaileanMac » Thu Jun 01, 2006 12:01 am

Bertie,

Cracking acronym!!! Going to pinch that one for the next rescue/rolling session/safety session/workshop I run.
I'm more into the LORDI approach - Learn Or Risk Drowning In'it
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Re: Paddle floats^

Post by Rob G » Thu Jun 01, 2006 10:14 pm

MarkR wrote:I've had one rammed down the side of my seat (festering away) for two years, but never actually used it until today, when we were playing around with different rescue options.

Did we miss anything? Anything else to know about paddle floats?
MarkR wrote:Did we miss anything? Anything else to know about paddle floats?
They make first rate camp pillows.

In the Pacific Northwest they are every where as [url]http://www.marinerkayaks.com%20Matt%20Broze[/url] has had a heavy influence in the area for a long time. I have had a couple of very close calls with people who keep them clipped to their deck. On one trip along Cape Flattery, WA, within 30 minutes of each other the floats washed off their decks, filled with water and pinned them to the waves like a drogue. One managed to haul it in before a set came into the rock garden and the other had someone rescue her before she ended up in the drink. A classic case of adding tools to make you safe without the forethought to see where you are adding problems to make you less safe. Wayne Horodowich's video, ABC's of the Surf Zone has him give a spiel about how he likes to keep his on deck. I guess that is because he would rather use it than submit to the indignity of letting one of his mates put him back in the boat.

On another note, you could inflate them and use them for floation for a holed compartment. Chateau Cardboard Vin bladders also work well for that and are free, after you've finished the wine, of course.

Cheers,

Rob G[/url]

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Paddle floats

Post by seismicscot » Fri Jun 02, 2006 4:31 pm

I took up sea kayaking while living in the US and paddle float rescues are a de rigeur part of the ACA syllabus. I have practiced PFRs in all sorts of conditions and find it a very quick and stable method of re-entering a boat (We would ALWAYS have a rescue practice session on every day paddle, regardless of weather and sea conditions - it is the only way to build up skills to the level where you can "do it with your eyes shut".) As Cailean mentioned, like any other rescue technique, it is only as good the amount of practice you put in.

Roger Schumann and Jan Shriner's book on sea kayak rescue gives a well illustrated account of paddle float and other North American rescue variations; see http://tinyurl.com/r4f9n

Concerning the problem of a paddle float turning into a drogue. I modified mine by cutting a couple of drain holes at the end (without affecting the air chambers!).

Having said that, the best option is to try not to come out of your boat and roll up instead ;o)

Cheers,

Clark

P.S. If like me, you have an Island Expedition, you will have to modify the paddle-coaming hand grip used in the 'regular' PFR - there is no inboard coaming to grip, therefore putting you paddle blade through the deck lines is a more stable option. Like all rescue techniques, it takes a wee bit of practice!
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Re: Paddle floats^

Post by TechnoEngineer » Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:15 am

Rob G wrote:I have had a couple of very close calls with people who keep them clipped to their deck....the floats washed off their decks, filled with water and pinned them to the waves like a drogue.
Excuse me for resurrecting an old thread, but presumably this is the inflatable type as opposed to the PolyEthylene foam type?

What I've discovered is that a re-entry and roll only needs the paddle float if so much water is in the cockpit that the boat doesn't remain stable at the end of the roll. If there's enough flotation in the boat, you can do re-entry and roll without the float (boat half-full of water, coaming still clear of the surface). In fact I find it easier to roll a boat with water in (especially at the setup stage) compared to a boat with no water at all.
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