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wings and waves

Posted: Sun Jan 26, 2014 6:22 am
by kiwisailor
Hi, sorry for all this posts, I'm on C.B. (confined to boat) at moment due to recovery from double Hernia Op.
Going stir crazy..
Don't scream please. BUT, it seems to me as a very newby, that paddlers here, seem Very traditional.
Does it go hand in hand with skin boats or am I reading it wrong?
Definitely not saying anything wrong, just something I've picked up on.
Down here in the "Land of the long white cloud" we use wing paddles a lot for sea kayaking (rightly or wrongly).
And yes, some use them because their mates do and they don't have a clue how to use them correctly, sigh..
I find them great for coastal touring/long distance paddling, but, a pain in the proverbial in a big following sea when a stern rudder stroke is necessary. Very efficient for bracing and rolling and don't seem to catch wind in a beam sea.
Any body else use them? love them/hate them?
Enjoy the journey, Wayne

Re: wings and waves

Posted: Sun Jan 26, 2014 7:22 am
by gbellware
Hope you have a speedy recovery.
Don't know if folding kayak paddlers are necessarily more traditional or not. It may be that people attracted to the folding world are less purist and less experienced than hard shellers. Many of us were attracted to these boats as a gateway drug…I am in that category. I acquired my first folder in my quest for a versatile conveyance that would let me camp and tour but would also let me store the boat in a closet.
As for the wing paddle, as you note, they can be difficult to handle for sculling and other control strokes. But, imo, they are a huge advantage in touring because of their efficient power transfer. I ended up splitting the difference with a Lendal modified wing which does not have a curled leading edge. It is easier to use in control strokes and gives up a little of the power advantage of a full wing.

Re: wings and waves

Posted: Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:19 pm
by siravingmon
FWIW, I prefer a wing most of the time over my greenland paddles, including for surfing (for a killer low brace when side surfing). I love their efficiency. For me at least, a wing paddle is also great for stability and bracing as long as I can keep forward momentum going. When I'm in big (for me) very confused seas however, and not moving (eg spotting my mate while he's rock gardening, or just holding place while I evaluate a situation), or when I'm tired, I much prefer my GP for predictable bracing. I also find it a bit easier to set up a roll wirh a GP, although it's not as powerful as my wing in a roll.
Speaking of wings, I prefer the Jantex Alpha small over my Jantex Gamma small. Although it's not as powerful, it's easier on my shoulders as it has a softer entry and a longer efffective atroke. The Gamma has been described by some as being like putting your paddle in cement, the catch is so firm, and you can really feel the difference in initial drive thru your feet on the footrests. My mate's call it my outboard motor but it does wear me out :-)

Re: wings and waves

Posted: Sat Nov 19, 2016 9:04 pm
by kiwisailor
Hi Simon, thanks for reply. Your experiences mirror mine. I used to cater to a lot of racing customers in my shop and always raved on about more springy looms as being the answer.

#1 was equivalent to glass fibre, with # 5 having no spring at all.
Being just a small chappy, the #1 or #2 worked well for me. (70 kilos wringing wet) with Neanderthal length arms.

Just takes the brutal shock loading out, and my triceps and wrists appreciate the springiness for those 8-12 hour paddle days (and nights)

Re: wings and waves

Posted: Sun Nov 20, 2016 9:46 am
by siravingmon
I' ve since moved to an even smaller wing paddle. A Zastera Z1. I don't think they come any smaller than this:

It's very easy on my somewhat worn out shoulders