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Tar Devil
07-25-2008, 12:35 PM
How do I figure?

Canoez
07-25-2008, 12:55 PM
Try these places Phil:

Sawyer (http://www.paddlesandoars.com/frame_paddlesize.html)
Lightning Paddles (http://www.touringkayaks.com/paddle_length.htm)

Paddle length for double bladed paddles (particularly in canoes and pirogues) really is dependant on a lot of factors - your style, the boat's beam and freeboard, your height and reach, etc. It may be best if you can borrow some different lengths and try them out.

If you're only looking at a single bladed paddle, you'll need to go elsewhere, but I'd think a relatively short paddle that ranges around sternum height would be best... Larry Boyle would have better insight with a pirogue than I would. I tend to like long beavertails...

htom
07-25-2008, 12:58 PM
You need to measure from your upper hand (in a comfortable position) down to your lower hand, and then add the length of the paddle below your lower hand.

Primarily has to do with your back height, but arm length and thickness of buttocks come into it, as do the height of the seat (if any) and the depth of the canoe in the water.

Easy way is one of those paddles that's also a measuring device.

P.I. Stazzer-Newt
07-25-2008, 01:22 PM
If you are going double ended - then in addition to length you should consider right/left hand and the feather angle.....

http://www.touringkayaks.com/paddle_feather.htm

The right/left thing is a bit like which hand winds a fly reel - there is no sound rational basis for choosing one over the other but the first time you meet the wrong one you will recognise it.

If you go for non-spooned blades, it os possible to make a 90 feather symmetrical paddle equally usable by righ handers and lefties - and with a take-down joint in the middle you can have optional right/left/no feather.

Blind guess for a kayak blade length - you should just be able to curl the tops of your fingers over to top of the blade.

And then there's the Greenland thing - see Todd B.

Cuyahoga Chuck
07-25-2008, 01:28 PM
I started out with a kayak paddle;
http://209.190.4.227/gallery/displayimage.php?album=333&pos=0
Nice and lite but too short. It dribbled water onto my lap.
Here is what I ended up with;
http://209.190.4.227/gallery/displayimage.php?album=333&pos=2
96" long. I need the length because I paddle kneeling. Also suitable for digging fishing worms.

paladin
07-25-2008, 01:30 PM
depends on where you sit in the kanoo and how much duct tape and blade length needed to get firm control of the outboard motor....

Alexander2
07-25-2008, 01:51 PM
Easy way is one of those paddles that's also a measuring device.

I have never seen one of those. Are they shown somewhere on the net?
Where would I get one?

Canoez
07-25-2008, 01:56 PM
There's a great picture of the like in the David Gidmark book on paddle making. Only for a single bladed paddle, but I'm sure that it could be adapted for double bladed.

Basically it's a paddle cut in two with a piece of tubing to allow the shaft to telescope up the tubing. Measuring marks are located on the paddle and shaft section. You can do it that way or using the grip section the same way.

Tar Devil
07-25-2008, 02:23 PM
Thanks, everyone for the links, photos and suggestions. Two considerations... I don't want the paddle so long it's a pain to deal with, but on the other hand the longer the better because I'll be doing some paddling from the standing position. Given my height and the beam of my boat, I think I'll shoot for around 240 cm. It it don't work... I can build another, right? :)

Canoez
07-25-2008, 02:38 PM
Phil, how about some ferrules (http://www.clcboats.com/shop/products/boatgear/paddles/0000-F0000.html) so you can have a take-apart paddle?

Build your paddle as a 1 piece. If you build it too long, cut the shaft in half, shorten appropriately and then add the ferrule. The take apart is easier to store and transport, too.

P.I. Stazzer-Newt
07-25-2008, 03:10 PM
Phil, how about some ferrules (http://www.clcboats.com/shop/products/boatgear/paddles/0000-F0000.html) so you can have a take-apart paddle?

Build your paddle as a 1 piece. If you build it too long, cut the shaft in half, shorten appropriately and then add the ferrule. The take apart is easier to store and transport, too.

These are a good idea - you can also build a short T-handle to plug in and have a single ended paddle on demand - handier in swampy stuff.

Tar Devil
07-25-2008, 03:56 PM
Phil, how about some ferrules (http://www.clcboats.com/shop/products/boatgear/paddles/0000-F0000.html) so you can have a take-apart paddle?

Build your paddle as a 1 piece. If you build it too long, cut the shaft in half, shorten appropriately and then add the ferrule. The take apart is easier to store and transport, too.

Good thought... have to see how I can make that work!

ahp
07-25-2008, 08:06 PM
For a single paddle, when you are standing. stand the paddle in front of you and it should come up to your nose. Simple. I learned this at the State of Maine YMCA camp many years ago and my first boat was an Old Town Canoe. Ir works.

I just bought a 5 and 1/2 ft paddle a few weeks ago for auxillary power for my 17 ft sailboat. Lost the old one.

Canoez
07-25-2008, 08:30 PM
For a single paddle, when you are standing. stand the paddle in front of you and it should come up to your nose. Simple. I learned this at the State of Maine YMCA camp many years ago and my first boat was an Old Town Canoe. Ir works.

I just bought a 5 and 1/2 ft paddle a few weeks ago for auxillary power for my 17 ft sailboat. Lost the old one.

Yes, that works well for an Old Town, and similar canoes. However, with the piroge, I think Phil will be sitting lower and a single bladed paddle that long would be awkward to be reaching over the gunnels.

Todd Bradshaw
07-25-2008, 10:29 PM
In case it helps, the PDF plan for my Greenland-style paddles is here and shows two different lengths:
http://webpages.charter.net/tbradshaw/Greenland%20Paddle%20plan.PDF

If you want to paddle standing up at times, the fact that there is no feather and the blades' ends are pretty similar to the grip section of a Maine-guide-style traditional canoe paddle make using one like a really long single-bladed paddle a no brainer. I haven't touched my $350 Werner carbon paddle in three years because these seem to simply do the job a lot better than euro-style paddles.

Ron Williamson
07-26-2008, 05:32 AM
I like my Greenland paddles too.
I made them my full reach height ie.about 94"
The shaft is about my shoulder width plus two fist widths.Everything else is blades.
The blades taper from 3 1/2" outboard to shaft diameter,about 1 1/2",inboard.

For single solo paddling, I like something close to my shoulder height, or a bit less.I use one of the kid's paddles.
For tandem, it's more comfortable if it's closer to my chin height,but it's the shaft that needs to be longer,not the blade.
R