Splits, use of

Places, technique, kayaks, safety, the sea...
Post Reply
User avatar
sub5rider
Posts: 655
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2003 4:38 pm

Splits, use of

Post by sub5rider » Thu Apr 10, 2003 7:35 pm


Some of my cronies did 4* sea assessments at the w/e in the company of messrs Dennis & Ramwell. As a consequence a Nordkapp was brought to Monday's baths session for folk to practice the latest "must have" technique. Which was, capsize without paddle, extricate one half of splits from elastics (either front or rear) and roll up.

Does this smack of paranoia or desperation? If I did this
I would certainly loose the other half of the splits, given the way that they're retained, plus, given the junk that gets strapped to some rear decks, merely extricating the paddle instead of the tent poles would be a major achievment.


I'm afraid I don't even want to think about being in such a situation ! :eek

Craig Addison
Posts: 278
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2002 5:17 pm
Location: Wimborne, Dorset

Re: Splits, use of

Post by Craig Addison » Thu Apr 10, 2003 8:00 pm

The easy way to do this trick is to keep your splits on the front deck, or at least one half on the front, with short section of loom with a T-grip on the end, keep this made up as a short canoe paddle on the front deck & hey presto easy rolling & no mix up with tent poles.

Craig.
Edited by: Craig Addison at: 4/10/03 8:00:26 pm

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

Re: Splits, use of

Post by Jim » Thu Apr 10, 2003 8:37 pm

Before I did my first sea trip (nostalgic memories of a close call in the Bristol channel...) we worked on this and discovered that it's actually pretty easy! Well it is with the right paddles....

By far the easiest way to do it is, as Craig says with your right blade (assuming you are right handed and roll on the left...) attached blade up to the front deck. The best thing for the shaft is to have a short elastic tied to 2 points on the same side as the shaft, stretch it over the shaft and over a hook on the opposite side. There are issues, like snagging things on the hook, paddle where you want your map (actually you want it accross to the left side anyway), and of course having the shaft grip on the end you want to roll with is good, especially if you have assymetric splits! A T-grip is useful but you can manage without. Another issue is that some boats, especially smaller ones (like the anas acutas we used) get narrow really quickly forward and the blades may overhang the gunwhales and catch the water as you paddle.....

It is also possible to recover the blade from the rear deck, again a special arrangement for the shaft elastic will help but is much harder to undo at the stern so it may be as well to just tuck it under a normal elastic, but not too far! This is especially useful if you can reverse screw roll your sea boat. You need the blades rearmost of course, which doesn't always suit some people - they may fit better the other way. this also tends to mean you get both blades under the same elastic. The thing to do is nominate your rolling side (tricky, sea kayaks tend to hang on one side or the other..) and have that blade on top so it shouldn't dislodge the other one - also having it's shaft secured better will help.

Deck cargo is going to play havoc with all the above, although most of us don't carry much deck cargo on the foredeck so a foredeck arrangement would suit if you really want to get into this! Actually I try not to carry deck cargo whenever possible - I will be this year as I had to leave the beer behind to achieve it last year!

As I said at the start, we practised this before our very first sea trip - I've never really worried about it since, I know I could try it if it comes up, I know that I could also re-entry and roll so don't feel under any pressure to succeed! Of course all such techniques get much more difficult, or impossible in heavy seas and surf.

Don't bother making modifications to your boat just so you can recover your splits, chances are you won't even think about it IF you should get upside down without your paddle!

JIM

User avatar
Mark R
Posts: 24087
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2002 6:17 pm
Location: Dorset
Contact:

Re: Splits, use of

Post by Mark R » Thu Apr 10, 2003 9:48 pm

This is all silly. In the kind of conditions that would rip your paddles out of your hands and capsize you...
...you wouldn't be out there in the first place
...no chance of performing this party trick

If your paddles break on a normal day and you somehow capsize, it may apply. But frankly, that's where you swim and test your mate's x-rescue skills.


-----------Mark Rainsley

User avatar
sub5rider
Posts: 655
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2003 4:38 pm

Re: Splits, use of

Post by sub5rider » Thu Apr 10, 2003 10:48 pm

Yup - with you on this one Mark.

I will however be practising re-entry & roll ( with paddle on a leash) next Monday night. Purely academic exercise, of course..... ;)

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

Re: Splits, use of

Post by Jim » Thu Apr 10, 2003 11:09 pm

"But frankly, that's where you swim and test your mate's x-rescue skills."

Not in a sea kayak loaded for a week you don't! They just turn it right way up, dump you back in and hold you steady whilst you pump! Assuming you didn't already re-entry and roll, in which case they just support whilst you pump. If they are really nice they may pump for you (doesn't apply if you have a footpump). Make sure they aren't on the outlet side or the offer will evaporate quickly as they get a soaking....

I'm now trying to think how many times I have lost my paddles at sea or inland, or broken them. I broke my splits on the Coe last Autumn, and rolled with them and made an eddy. My Werners were ripped out of my hands at the end of an inverted descent of the falls of Leny (I swam), I let go of my C1 blade getting a T rescue once, and I lost a set of lendals on an alloy shaft when I swam the Roy gorge back in January '94. I wonder if that time I tried to throw them up in the air and catch them again in the surf counts - you don't move forward on the river, where it works fine.......:-)

I've seen other paddles broken, Gary's rough stuffs on Easan Dubh, Greig's Gorillas on Dominator slabs, and interestingly just last weekend an ancient set of Nordkapps my Dad was given, and had already repaired a bit, managed an interesting break! On his first paddle stroke of the day, in deep water on the reservoir, the paddle blade came off it's own spigot - it was cracked down both sides, and probably had been for a while but unnoticed! Fortunately he had a set of splits with him!

"This is all silly"

Agreed, I just thought people might like to know how it can be done if they feel like being silly!!!

As we discussed a while back, not many of us have rolled a sea kayak in anger, so the chances of needing to do this must be really really really small?

JIM

User avatar
NickB
Posts: 838
Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2002 10:11 am
Location: Plymouth
Contact:

Re: Splits, use of

Post by NickB » Fri Apr 11, 2003 7:53 am

The "Tow Lines - sea boats" thread developed into a discussion into the various ways of dealing with broken and/or lost paddles, have a look for further disagreement, sorry discussion.

Steve B
Posts: 5699
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2002 2:36 pm
Location: Taunton, Somerset

Re: Splits, use of

Post by Steve B » Fri Apr 11, 2003 10:54 am

Mark> "This is all silly."

I'm not qualified to comment on, well, anything in a sea kayaking context - to me the sea is somewhere you go to wait for the next surf wave. But in general, isn't this sort of thing that's good for building up overall competence and confidence? Bit like the way we do all-in rescue practice - you could apply the same argument that in conditions bad enough to make it happen, the rescue would never succeed. But it makes for a genuinely useful practice session.

Steve B.

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

Re: Splits, use of

Post by Jim » Fri Apr 11, 2003 11:46 am

"Bit like the way we do all-in rescue practice - you could apply the same argument that in conditions bad enough to make it happen, the rescue would never succeed"

I relayed a story here before that almost disproves this!
A large group of squaddies in unladen Nordkapps tried to paddle through the swellies and only one remained in his boat (rolled). almost the same as all-in rescue from organisation point of view (which is really what we practise for), the thing is that the current carried the boats out of the disturbed water that caused the all-in....

Same thing could happen at the Falls of Lora, going too far off Portland Bill, the Pentland Firth or any of a number of tide races and/or overfalls around the coast where the tide stream or a rip would probably carry the swimmers out of the rough zone - assuming some big whirly hasn't swallowed them forever.

Practising anything that helps you keep your cool in a bad situation has to be worthwhile :-)

JIM

User avatar
adrian j pullin
Posts: 1390
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2002 1:43 pm
Location: In reality: Wirral. In my dreams: Mull

Re: Splits, use of

Post by adrian j pullin » Fri Apr 11, 2003 1:40 pm

I would agree that this is a nice party trick but unlikely to be used in anger. The worry I would have is what to do after the roll. Once upright, you'd be in the same conditions that dumped you but with a single blade only!

I guess that the guy in the video with the Orce might have a use for it!


Post Reply