double paddle for solo canoe?

Post questions & answers about; paddle selection, building and maintenance; paddling techniques; boat transportation, storage & maintenance.
Post Reply
Rabbit
Posts: 121
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:20 pm
Location: Downunder

double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Rabbit » Thu Sep 18, 2014 10:25 am

hi all :)

thought i'd give using a double paddle a go for solo paddling splinters. going with a birds mouth shaft of wrc and paulownia, with wrc blades, all glassed. i've gotten the materials together and dimensioned ready for gluing, but before i get too much further, i need to lock down the shaft length. i've seen a variety of lengths elsewhere online, but stiill not sure how long to make the shaft. i get the impression that a longer paddle is the way to go so that water from the blade doesn't drip into the canoe after it's lifted out of the water. the strips i've cut for the shaft will allow for up to about 2.5m between the shoulders of the blades.

any ideas from people who use double paddles with their canoes as to how long the shaft should be?

User avatar
Cruiser
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:21 am
Location: Bowmanville, Ontario

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Cruiser » Thu Sep 18, 2014 7:40 pm

I did go through this exercise earlier this year, and what follows is a summary of what I found and maybe a bit of opinion.

First, there are 2 basic types of blade designs, high angle and low angle. The high angle is better suited to a kayak style paddling, where the blade is plunged deeper and closer to the boat.

Obviously, that leaves the low angle to cover use as a canoe paddle. The stroke is farther away from the boat and much shallower in the water. The low angle refers to the angle of the shaft as it expands to form the top of the blade, it allows the blade to be completely submerged without much depth. The stroke is significantly different in that it reaches the water 5' or so from the gunnel. This is to accommodate the wider stance a canoe presents and helps eliminate reaching around the gunnels.

I talked with Grey Owl Paddles and they make them out to 280 cm, for my Freedom Solo, they suggested 260 cm or greater. I bought a 250 cm and wish I had gone to 270 cm.

So to summarize, low angle blade design, longer is better.


Brian

Rabbit
Posts: 121
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:20 pm
Location: Downunder

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Rabbit » Sat Sep 20, 2014 2:32 am

thanx cruiser :)

i looked at grey owl paddles web site and i could only see one paddle they referred to as low angle (tempest). the max length for that was 2.5m total length with a 1.5ish shaft.

i glued up my shaft and after trimming the ends (the strips were all different lengths) i have 2.46m to play with and 90mm for the blades. the blades will be flat, not going to try curving them. next i have to work out the profile to use. i couldn't find a low angle blade pattern online. i was thinking about using the sugar island profile for the bottom half, the otter tail for the top half and coming up with a suitable curve to join the two up at the end. once i figure it out i'll post the build here.

User avatar
Cruiser
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:21 am
Location: Bowmanville, Ontario

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Cruiser » Sat Sep 20, 2014 8:37 am

The Tempest is the one I bought, they list the max at 250cm, but I went to the factory (which is near me) and they will make longer lengths, you just have to wait. Obviously the difference is just where you cut the shafts.
I didn't want to wait, as my first trip in the Freedom Solo was looming, so I got the 250cm and it does work fine, although when I get a chance to try a build, I will go to 260cm.
I figure to use the Tempest as a guide for the blade shape, but I will follow your build with interest. There are a lot of ideas in the forum on shape, patterns and type of single paddles, will be nice to see a double project.
I am sure you have already sourced your ferrules, but these are the ones I was considering:
http://www.duckworksbbs.com/hardware/mi ... /index.htm

Although, you could surely find something closer to home, i post it just for your information.


Brian

Rabbit
Posts: 121
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:20 pm
Location: Downunder

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Rabbit » Mon Sep 22, 2014 1:34 am

cruiser: ferrule? what's that? hehe i hadn't really considered using a ferrule, i was planing on making it a one piece and lashing it to the underside of the seat frames for transport. not sure how the carbon fibre would look with the timber. i'd probably paint the ferrule i think.

Rabbit
Posts: 121
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:20 pm
Location: Downunder

to drip ring, or not to drip ring, that is the question?

Post by Rabbit » Thu Oct 16, 2014 8:20 am

cruiser: did you try with and without drip rings?

User avatar
Cruiser
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:21 am
Location: Bowmanville, Ontario

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Cruiser » Thu Oct 16, 2014 9:23 pm

Two comments to make:

1. I use drip rings, they aren't 100% effective, but they help a lot, are light and cheap.
2. You are going to get a little water in the boat from the paddle, regardless of your stroke ( and using or not using rings) ... you may not care, I find it annoying. Either the day bag gets wet on the bottom, or I get a wet back from the pack harness getting a little wet.

The solution I came up with (actually my son did) is to simply put half sham wow at the center seat area ( on the boat bottom), this basically is the balance point and all the water gets sucked up on the cloth. Just pick it up every so often and wring it out and put it back down.


Brian

Rabbit
Posts: 121
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:20 pm
Location: Downunder

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Rabbit » Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:38 am

thanx cruiser, guess i'll give rings a try. i'll have to custom make something because my shaft is thicker than the commercially made paddles. i did come across something posted elsewhere using funnels with the end cut off. whatever i use will have to be spit since it's a one piece. some sanding and a final coat of epoxy on the blades, then sanding and a couple of coats of clear and it will be done. :dancing

User avatar
Cruiser
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:21 am
Location: Bowmanville, Ontario

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Cruiser » Fri Oct 17, 2014 6:51 am

It may easier to just try your shiny new paddle first, you may not have much water drip with your situation. This is one of those times where you can always go to more bother, making up drip rings, after you do the initial trials.

If you don't have what you consider a problem, you are done and won't need them. Putting down the cloth really solved that annoying small puddle of water that seems to form regardless of which paddle I use with the solo.

I don't see why splitting a set of commercial rings would pose much issue, they have enough structure to likely hold well enough on the oversize shaft you built.



Brian

DrPepper
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2006 4:20 pm

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by DrPepper » Fri Oct 17, 2014 7:19 am

A turks head knot tied around the shaft is a more "traditional" drip ring. It will fit any size shaft.

For an even simpler drip ring just tie a a loop of rope (1/4" ish) around shaft. Leave a little extra pig tail of rope that will hang down towards the water. Water will drain down the shaft, hit the loop and drain off the pig tail back into the water.

Rabbit
Posts: 121
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:20 pm
Location: Downunder

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Rabbit » Wed Oct 29, 2014 3:07 am

wellp... i took the new paddle out for a spin. the shaft and blades when i was making it seemed to have a degree of flexibility greater than i thought would be good. as it turns out, i didn't notice any flex. it was much easier to paddle with than the single blade paddles. part of that might have to do with the smaller blade. the length also made it easier for a novice paddler like me to manoeuvre the canoe.

getting the low angle stroke took some practice. sounds crazy but another 200mm would have made it easier. i had to sit with my legs out rather then feet flat on the bottom to get my knees out of the way. i suspect the correct length depends on the size of the paddler and the position they take in the canoe. i sit on a seat with a fairly thick cushion and backrest that straps to the seat frame. my seat frame, being tubular is thicker than the standard seat frame, which adds some height if you want enough clearance under the frame to avoid entrapment. the cushion when compressed by my butt still gives me about 20 - 25mm of lift. i ended up with some water in the canoe. i suspect larger drip rings might help.

User avatar
Cruiser
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:21 am
Location: Bowmanville, Ontario

Re: double paddle for solo canoe?

Post by Cruiser » Fri Oct 31, 2014 8:02 pm

The whole leg stretched out is why I installed footrests, they also seem to give me better hip action in controlling the boat.

As far as the drip rings go, you can change them around and you will get the water dripping in reduced, but as I posted earlier, putting a cloth on the bottom around your feet area pretty much eliminates the issue. Just wring the cloth once in awhile and your water is contained ... it really does work.



Brian

Post Reply