New Paddle Advice

More
1 month 1 day ago #40852 by Kennneee
New Paddle Advice was created by Kennneee
I am in the market for a new paddle. I have been using a Jantex Gama Rio 720 for the last 10 years and it has served me well. I am currently away from my home in British Columbia and spending time in San Diego. While I am here in SD I have been using an old Fenn 3. I have developed some tendonitis which I would love to blame on the paddle but it is most likely just time to treat my "mature" body to a smaller blade and and softer shaft.
The paddles I have been looking at are a Jantex Gama 700 cm superflex, NK Clubline 690cm, Stellar Pros Small 675cm. The new Epic Mid twist looks interesting but there are none to purchase at the moment. Most of my paddling is in relatively flat water with occasional downwinders and bumps. I have not been able to see any of these blades so it is hard to compare shape, twist, etc. Any input appreciated.
Cheers,
Ken

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
1 month 1 day ago #40854 by CrabStick
Replied by CrabStick on topic New Paddle Advice
I went from Gamma Rio Small plus (flexi-plus green shaft) to a Gara Odin small some years ago and had appreciably less shoulder soreness with the slightly less aggressive blade and a much more flexible shaft. See the many old posts on this topic by others eg Hulk, Nell
The Meek A-series has a similar twist / shape to the gamma and is available with a very flexible "Clint Robinson" shaft. A really top quality paddle.
I'm sure you realise that paddle feel and preference is very personal and you should always demo before you buy. This applies particularly strongly to a gamma user as that paddle has a spectacularly strong catch for it's size and one of the cleaner exits out there. Some users find it a bit unstable or unforgiving in rough water.
Let us know how you like the Jantex Superflex.

CrabStick, Perth Western Australia
Current Boats: Epic V9 ultra, Fenn Swordfish S, Fenn Spark S
Previous: Think Eze, Stellar SR, Carbonology Boost LV, Fenn BlueFin S

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
1 month 21 hours ago #40855 by zachhandler
Replied by zachhandler on topic New Paddle Advice

I went from Gamma Rio Small plus (flexi-plus green shaft) to a Gara Odin small some years ago and had appreciably less shoulder soreness with the slightly less aggressive blade and a much more flexible shaft.

I have those same exact paddles and I got the odin small with the softest shaft. I agree 100% with how much gentler the odin is on the shoulders. But I am not sure that is due to shaft flex. I was actually surprised to find that the most flexible gara shaft was not as flexible as the shaft on my epic mid (full carbon shaft, not the newer progrip series). I would recommend considering the epic small mid in full carbon. As for the epic mid twist, a lot of people love it, but it is very different from gamma type paddles and from low twist modified teardrop paddles like the original epic or the gara odin (those latter two paddles behave very similarly in my experience). Finally, the gamma paddles have such a nice catch and exit that it is difficult to improve on that experience if it is something that really works for you. As mentioned before, paddle preference is very personal and everyone is different.

Current Skis: Epic v10 g3, NK 670 double, NK exrcize, Kai Wa’a Vega, Carbonology Feather, Think Jet, Knysna Sonic X
Former Skis: Epic V12 g2, Epic V12 g1, Epic v10 double, Nelo 550 g2, Fenn Elite S, Custom Kayaks Synergy

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
1 month 20 hours ago #40856 by Kennneee
Replied by Kennneee on topic New Paddle Advice
It is interesting how cyclical things things can be. Equipment styles fall in and out of favor and we learn more over time, materials can improve, etc. Thirty years ago I was an avid sea kayaker and was enamored by native boats and skills. Built quite a few native paddles and over time started making them more and more flexible. Doing long paddles was easy on the body and I didn't notice any downside. I shifted gears, so to speak, when I started paddling surfskis. My early wing paddles were larger and stiffer than what seems to be in vogue these days.
The Meek paddle that Crabstick mentioned sounds good to me. I don't think it is readily available here in California. A couple of the dealers that carried Gara in the past seem to have given up on stocking them. Not sure what that is about but they may be a bit harder to get. Try before you buy is obviously the way to go if possible. I won't be able to try all of these paddles but with experince and observations from you all I will hopefully make a good call. The input here is really helpful and appreciated.
Ken

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
4 weeks 23 hours ago #40860 by mrcharly
Replied by mrcharly on topic New Paddle Advice
Wing blades started out with long parallel blades, quite big surface areas.
The modern teardrop, as in the Jantex gamma, has such a strong catch, it is like the blade is buried in concrete.

I agree with going smaller, and soft shaft.

We haven't mentioned shaft length. Shorter paddles put less strain on the shoulders. There is no reason not to use them if you are paddling a slender boat.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Latest Forum Topics