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oar/paddle resilient wear edge

Posted by stevegausman 
oar/paddle resilient wear edge
September 20, 2016 06:05PM

Sorry if this is a bit off topic, but I'm hoping someone has some experience they can share. I build oars and canoe paddles as well as boats. For years I have been trying to emulate the tough semi-resilient wear edge that Bending Branches applies to their products. Bending Branches does say they use a urethane composite similar to an inline-skate wheel. I have tried thickened epoxy with graphite/glass; to brittle. Any thoughts would be appreciated. I am now thinking of trying a product like pl-400.


Re: oar/paddle resilient wear edge
September 20, 2016 08:35PM
Good question.
Re: oar/paddle resilient wear edge
September 20, 2016 09:46PM
Sawyer uses Dynel for their "Pro-Tip" protectors. I have these on my oars, pretty rugged. Would be even better if applied with Resin Research high impact epoxy, which is significantly less brittle.

Jeremy Christensen
Re: oar/paddle resilient wear edge
September 21, 2016 03:12AM
I understand that Mitchell Paddles uses fiberglass rope - the kind used for insulation on fireplace and oven doors for edge protection. I've got one of their paddles with this edging and it has held up well. No idea what kind of resin was used to stick it to the wood blade edge. The tip of the blade is 5/8" wide x 1/8" or so thick metal, which I think is aluminum. Light glass covers the entire blade, tip, and edge. Seems to be 2 or 4 oz glass.

J R Sweet composites sells dynel tubing that they say is used for paddle blade edging.

There was a company called Whiskey Jack paddles located in Whitefish Montana that hand crafted canoe and SUP paddles. Many of their paddle blades appear to have tips and part of the edges protected by a fabric of some sort....dynel or glass or polypropylene?

I've protected the tip of oar blades with hardwood. If the tip is thick enough saw a kerf and insert a 1/8" piece. If not thick, just glue it on the end. This will keep the wood in the tip from splitting.
Re: oar/paddle resilient wear edge
September 21, 2016 05:19PM
I applied a strip of kevlar cloth to my oar tips (just once so far). This has held up very well.

Over this I apply graphite/milled glass, and touch up annually in the fall.

Re: oar/paddle resilient wear edge
September 21, 2016 06:20PM
I have a pair of Sawyer lights I bought with my first boat in 1979. One oar eventually started to crack at the tip--so I put the oar tips between foam and visqueen with the edges buttered with putty and covered both sides with ten ounce glass (all that between visqueen and foam). 24 hours later I ground back the irregular edges leaving the oars a full half inch wider all around. Maybe more. That lasted for a decade. It needs to be redone now. But 10 years is hard to argue with.

Some guides I've talked to on the Deschutes like the narrowest possible oar tips, primarily because the downstream wind on the Deschutes is so strong at times wide oar tips make it hard to row.

We have plenty of wind here in Montana but I still like wider oar tips. I can feel that extra horsepower when I pull hard on the oars. And I like it that way.
Re: oar/paddle resilient wear edge
September 21, 2016 11:56PM
I rebuilt a Sawyer Oar that had rotted from moisture captured by the rubber boot. The tip of that oar was split about 4" up and contains a replacement chunk of steel/galvined 1/4" screen in an epoxy putty. The other oar of the pair has the same thing. I have no idea how old they are but they have suffered no damage and I suppose the the reinforcing could be used on other oars too. I posted the repair a sometime ago on Woodenboatpeople.com

Rick N
Re: oar/paddle resilient wear edge
October 04, 2016 09:13PM
I used durabak on mine. Has held up very well.
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