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Whitewater paddle
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Author:  Alan Greve [ June 15th, 2006, 9:22 pm ]
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HOOP you are correct the Aqua Bound carbon blade is is great blade. But either the injected fiber class ( white) or the injected carbon ( black ) DOES flex. If you think the carbon blade does not flex you have never paddled with a stiff composite carbon / kevlar blade such as the Gala Sport Karas Elite. There is a huge difference between the two. Even as we talk I`m in the process of manufacturing a world class white water slalom composite carbon/ kevlar blade with magnesium edges and tip. I can`t say any more on the project because of industry competition.

But if anyone is considering a Aqua Bound blade, you won`t be disappointed, they`re a real value the buck.

Author:  HOOP_ [ June 15th, 2006, 9:45 pm ]
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Hi Al,

I have held beautiful high end super stiff blades before, and marveled at the lightness and stiffness, but never had the privilege of paddling with them.

But would you smash a paddle like that on the rocks, repeatedly? I do rock paddling (you know those tight eddies where you have to scrape your way up, grabbing rocks with your blade).

The black blade Aquabound C1 does flex like I said when impacted. On the store floor, if you lean on it, it will flex. But in my experience, I don't sense any poor flex when pulling water. The flex starts when I hit rocks. When aggressively paddling you know how you really torque a blade when smashing unexpected rocks. You can prevent an elbow ligament strain or wrist injury with a blade like the black Aquabound. I have had painful tendonitis for months due to an elbow ligament strain I received in hockey on a stick move very similar to a paddling move, when I pulled backwards on a faceoff against the other guy's stick and there was no movement except for my elbow ligament. Ouch.

I admit that compared to one of those beautiful carbon-glass racing blades like yours, I'm sure there is some flex when I pull water, since what you are talking about is the best of the best. But I like the idea of a small flex when smashing a rock, which I do often playboating, especially when the water is low. And if I break it, the replacement price is OK.

Author:  Dan. [ June 15th, 2006, 10:13 pm ]
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HOOP, aquabound is a great blade, I have 2 of them.

However, they feel like a wet noodle when compared to any really stiff stick. Even the new H20 plastic paddles make my aquabound feel sloppy.

That said. I can buy 3 aquabounds for the price of one echo-paddle.

Oh, and asking if Al paddles in rocks is like asking if birds fly in the air. To quote Paul Mason quoting Joe Langman "If you don't hit rocks, how you gonna learn?"

Author:  yarnellboat [ June 15th, 2006, 11:36 pm ]
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Depending on your school of thought and the local fashions, you may find that the MEC/Aquabound has a lot of curve in the blade, some people coming to ww from tripping may prefer a straight blade, or at least a more moderate curve.

P.

Author:  Gail R [ June 16th, 2006, 8:32 am ]
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Dan...you can't beat that price eh! Although I hear you seemed to like the creeking class last month......diversification in your future?

It would do for me, I don't need an expencive paddle, mine is a little more "river fasion" than practicality at this point...Stew, yea, he managed to break one of the old Norris paddles (among others)....he is hard on paddles. He might have gotten away with another Mitchell but he hooked up with this bad influence down South western ontario way and now he's bubbling over about simon, bonnybrook and other rock infested creeks. Splake, I think the MEC/aquabound paddle Dan showed is a great suggestion. I don't think you'll be the type to try and find a line in a trickle.

no, you don't need to spend 300+ on a paddle..... but for some it is conceviable they would go through 3 auqabounds in a season, so it's not just a matter of flash, there is practicality.....that being said no paddle is going to survive getting jammed in a crevace at the Gull's Otteslide and then have the weight of paddler and boat careening down on it.
find the balance that works for you.
Sure there's a measure of bling bling but there are some solid reasons to buy certain paddles...racing ever ounce counts......creeking it better be stiff and solid because a, you are going to hit a rock and b....you might have only one stroke to gereate your move from
Whatever you get....a roll of florecent duct tape from Canadian tire will pay dividents

Author:  Splake [ June 16th, 2006, 9:09 am ]
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Hmmm, that MEC one looks interesting purely from a price point of view. Adventure Guide here in Waterloo carries the Aquabound and the Werner paddles, the Werner's are much stiffer and I can see where I would want that in WW for responsiveness while I'm happy with some more flex in a lake paddle to reduce stress.

I'd been pondering a Werner, but with Rainbow Sports closing I was forced to go and invest in some more fishing gear yesterday so a $200 paddle likely isn't realistic this year. I'm tempted to just take my wood paddle along for the course and then give folks a chance to convince me that there are benefits to moving to a real WW paddle. Heck, it can't be any less stylish than using a hockey helmet, can it?

Author:  Gail R [ June 16th, 2006, 9:21 am ]
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LOL Splake :lol: ...dont ya hate when someone puts a shotgun to your head and forces you to a sale....sounds like you know where your value is just fine...take the wooden one if it has a t-grip.....hockey Helmet will do fine, it's the love of water is the only fashion that matters....oh and don't drink shit beer
s'all good on the river

Author:  Dan. [ June 16th, 2006, 11:20 am ]
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Wood paddles are great, I have run more waterfalls than I would like to admit using a Ray Kettlewell ottertail. This is not a reccomended practice BTW, its hard to generatle power with 3 narrow inches of wood in the water and a loaded tripping boat and a bow paddler who does not understand why I am making them kneel. :o

According to Jaime Dors (www.paddlesportsrepair.net) he sees more broken Werners than any other brand.

Author:  daver [ June 26th, 2006, 2:04 pm ]
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I had an opportunity to try an Echo paddle on the weekend. I loved the paddle, as did all who tried it. I will definately be upgrading!

Author:  Glenn [ July 6th, 2006, 5:41 pm ]
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Be careful investing in a top end paddle. Once you fork out the dough for a Mitchell, Galasport, etc... you no longer have that cushion of being able to blame your paddle for that missed eddie or poor line. You’ll be wishing you still had your flimsy Aquabound to blame! :x

I currently use a Mitchell carbon paddle and I love it. I’m not sure how much of a better paddler it has made me, but it sure looks pretty and it feels great it the water (and Hoop, it is way stiffer than an Aquabound).

That said, I paddled with an Aquabound for several years before my ego and the peer pressure won out and I bought the Mitchell. In my opinion, the Aquabound is an absolutely great paddle and by far the best paddle for the money. It’s super-durable, relatively light and stiff enough.

Oh and by the way, one of the best boaters I know paddles with a hockey helmet and just upgraded his paddle to an Aquabound because his old one from the 90’s broke.
:wink:

Author:  Splake [ July 10th, 2006, 4:59 pm ]
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Well, I came home from my 5 days at MKC without any scratches on the hockey helmet. I only swam one rapid, all the other dumps were practicing ferries. It took until Thursday to get the knee straps tightened up properly, but that made a big difference. I also really noticed that I haven't done enough paddling this year. The core paddling muscles just weren't there the first couple of days.

I used the Aquabound all week, forgot the wood paddle at home. I saw a really nice Echo paddle, and noted where the fibreglass went up to on the shaft.

I also now know that on the MKC scale, I clearly still rate as a novice. I guess I'll have to cut out one of the other hobbies if I want to make more progress with the playboat. :(

Author:  robertm [ July 10th, 2006, 5:17 pm ]
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Splake wrote:
I also now know that on the MKC scale, I clearly still rate as a novice.(


Me too, but when I get involved in a new sport I generally think being a novice is a positive. A fairly vertical learning curve means any effort put in is usually rewarded by instant progress. It's when I get to a solid intermediate stage and sometimes hit a plateau that it can test my patience. Hope you had a good time.

The Aquabound paddles MKC rents seemed like they'd be fine for me starting out in ww. I saw on their website they have a year end sale but does anyone know if they sell used paddles (straps/bags etc.) during the season?

Author:  Dan. [ July 10th, 2006, 8:25 pm ]
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Well, I also retured from a week at MKC.... I snapped 2 aquabound paddles. During that time I became spoiled using Andrew Westwood's echo paddle, I guess I have to fork out 3 bills for a new stick now :-?

Author:  Dan. [ July 10th, 2006, 8:27 pm ]
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Splake wrote:
I also now know that on the MKC scale, I clearly still rate as a novice.
you and me both

Author:  yarnellboat [ July 10th, 2006, 11:03 pm ]
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Dan,

You may be novice, at least compared to Andrew Westwood, but at least you're awesome at snapping paddles!

How'd you manage to bust 2 paddles in 5 days?

P.

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