bent shaft canoe paddle
Posted by: softchine on Jun-10-13 8:25 AM (EST) Category: Canoes
I've done a bit of archival work on this topic but most real discussion is from 2005. I'm looking for a bent shaft canoe paddle. Must be light. Must also still allow me to j or c stroke. I'll probably use it in a tandem but also in my next canoe which could just be a Hemlock solo. ( I have a Flashfire and a Dagger Reflection 15.) So far I've gleaned that a ZRE could be the one. If so, which model? I'll shorten the shaft till it feels right.
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Posted by: richardp on Jun-10-13 9:22 AM (EST)
There are soooooooo many choices. After some research I choose a Foxworx Guide. No particular reason other than I like the fact that it is a small family owned company, my favorite outfitter sells them, they answer the phone and talked paddles for about 30 minutes with me, and it was designed by the owners son who is a guide in the Adirondacks where I do most of my canoeing. I wanted a wood paddle for under $150. I bought my wife a Wiskey Jack paddle (Wiskey Jill for women or small hands) and it is a work of art.
Zavs are light but one most likely is|
Posted by: kayamedic on Jun-10-13 9:25 AM (EST)
not going to meet all your seating requirements. If you get picky you will need a range of shaft lengths to correspond to seat heights. If kneeling you can probably use one length.
ZRE is an excellent choice.|
Posted by: Yanoer on Jun-10-13 9:30 AM (EST)
I'd suggest the Medium or light. The Medium is pretty durable and plenty light.
Shorten the shaft 'til it feels right? |
Posted by: g2d on Jun-10-13 11:54 AM (EST)
Many bent shaft paddles, including ZRE, use an integral grip which is difficult to remove and re-install after shortening the shaft. I suggest you try to get the length right when you order.
Posted by: softchine on Jun-10-13 12:16 PM (EST)
I appreciate your input. Yes, I may end up with a few different bents. I may choose one for tripping (the ZRE perhaps?) and another one to play around with freestyle. What bent shafts do freestyle canoeists like? BTW, I thought you could order a paddle with the grip not yet glued in and then find your best length before fixing it in place. Does that not apply to ZRE?
Most freestylers do not use|
Posted by: kayamedic on Jun-10-13 12:25 PM (EST)
bents as they are unidirectional. Its more awkward to palm roll a dedicated grip and uncomfortable and paddle placements have to sometimes be inverted.
Posted by: jackl on Jun-10-13 12:48 PM (EST)
You can order shafts and handles separately or order one all put together.
Thje ZRE is the easiest shaft of any |
Posted by: jackl on Jun-10-13 12:42 PM (EST)
canoe paddle to shorten.
Thanks, JackL, makes me more likely|
Posted by: g2d on Jun-10-13 4:52 PM (EST)
to buy one. Though as I kneel nearly all the time, a five degree custom would be plenty.
The "Z Whitewater" in a 5 degree|
Posted by: clarion on Jun-10-13 5:08 PM (EST)
... is a really nice paddle. I tried one. Holy cow!
I have a ZRE Whitewater |
Posted by: rpg51 on Jun-10-13 9:17 PM (EST)
and I love it. I use it for tripping up to class 2. Mine is 12 degree. I have used it extensively on hard trips and it has held up very well. The edges of the blade are just now starting to show some dings and I may try to smooth the edges some how. But this is after years and years of hard use. I do not baby it. You do have to be careful at night to secure it so it does not blow away.
I only use my home made 5 degree |
Posted by: g2d on Jun-11-13 11:12 PM (EST)
bent shaft on flatter sections, because as soon as the need for ww maneuvering picks up, the somewhat peculiar behavior of the bent shaft sends me back to my Mitchell slalom paddle.
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Jun-10-13 1:47 PM (EST)
I'm a kneeling paddler that has always used bent shafts on flatwater. I have lots of bents, but I now use my 48.5" ZRE almost exclusively. Light weight rules.
Posted by: mcimes on Jun-10-13 1:55 PM (EST)
Over the past weekend there was|
Posted by: kayamedic on Jun-10-13 2:34 PM (EST)
a class in paddle shapes and sizes. A friend of mine has amassed a collection of paddles (he brought some three dozen) had half a dozen Zavs.
Posted by: windwalker on Jun-10-13 9:10 PM (EST)
I've been using a ZRE whitewater bent shaft for many years. It has held up very well with a lot of river miles. I use it kneeling and sitting, and find it very comfortable to J or C, and hit and switch. I, like some of the other just adjust to the size in any given position. I always have a straight shaft along as well. I prefer a straight shaft in class II or better WW. When I switch paddles I am always amazed at how heavy my 18oz straight shaft paddle feels compared to the ZRE. If I want to cover distance I always take the ZRE.
Other Bent Shaft paddles|
Posted by: roundsidedown1 on Jun-11-13 10:33 PM (EST)
I paddle ZRE Flat water "Z" and Powersurge paddles when I flatwater race. I am now training with QuickBlade Outrigger paddle and a Kialoa Nehu Wacky Shaft bent paddles. I like both of these paddles. The QuickBlade is very stiff and had a ABS edge around the blade which makes it very durable. The Kialoa Wacky shaft Nehu has a"T" handle and a double bend. The Kialoa take a little bit to get used to. The Wacky shaft make a very interesting j stroke. It works very well when you rudder, you can steer both directions easily because of the offset blade. Gillespie Paddles also make some very nice bent paddles
Powersurge & Gillespie|
Posted by: plaidpaddler on Jun-11-13 11:39 PM (EST)
The ZRE powersurge blade is a carbon fiber rendition of the curved lip that Brad Gillespie has used on his wooden bent shaft paddles for over 30 years. Quiet entry, no splash, great catch.
Posted by: CEWilson on Jun-12-13 10:56 AM (EST)
Lost in the above is that the Zavs have blades sized for use by fit paddlers at 60 stroke per minute or higher stroke rates.