Submitted: 09-05-2006 by Tim C
I have been using a T-1 for just over a month now, and I really like it. Steve's customer service was fantastic. I ordered the paddle on a Tuesday & received it here in florida on Thursday. At fist glance, it did look like an "el cheapo" paddle, but that idea disappeared as soon as I put it together, felt the light weight & began to paddle.
At first, the T-1 blades seemed rather small, and I got some comments made about it, but they push plenty of water without straining my wrists or elbows. On our last trip out, we had to paddle hard for several miles to get back in before a thunder storm jumped on us. The light weight was a pleasure, and nobody out distanced me with their fancy touring paddles that had larger blades. Yes, I have gotten snears from others who see it, but when they use it, their story and opinion quickly change.
I fish out of a SOT in the back country, bays and shallow flats. I encounter oyster bars, rocks, trees & some nasty pilings. Aside from light weight, I need a paddle that's tough and that I'm not afraid to ding. Well, this paddle fills the bill all the way around.
I have traded off paddles with my cousin when she was in the market for a new paddle. She much preferred my T-1 to a $300 Werner she had been testing. The only paddle she could find that she liked more than my T-1 was the $500 paddle she eventually bought. Now she's happy and so am I because I get my T-1 back for ME to use!
I ordered mine feathered with extra holes on both ends so I can adjust it from 245 down to a little over 230, and with directions from Steve, I also drilled extra ones so I can set it straight when I feel the need, but still have the adjustable length.
Overall, I really like this paddle. It's solid, very light and tough as nails. If you're looking for high style (like my cousin was for her touring kayak), then spend $400-$500 on a fancy high-tech paddle. If you're wanting to save hundreds of dollars & have a paddle that will do the same things, but that you don't have to baby, then buy a Pacific Designs. I'm very happy with my purchase. At some point in the future, if I have lots of unsued cash around (not likely), I may buy a high-tech paddle, but I'll always keep my T-1 around for the tough times.