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Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
   Group Forum: Solo Tripping
      bb slice glass paddle, or other.     

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bwcasolo
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03/03/2015 06:04AM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
I have never used a double blade with my prism. always very content to move the canoe with my solo blade skills.
for those who use a 2 blade-
do you get wet?
is it as an enjoyable paddle as with the single blade?
pros and cons please. thanks.
 
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Bogwalker
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03/03/2015 06:27AM  
To start let me just say the double blade is a great option for many-it just wasn't for me and after using it on a few trips I went away from it.

I used a double blade early on in my solo adventures but abandoned it for a couple of reasons:

1) I never got the feel of it and I felt more confident with the single blade especially in rough seas. A single blade gave me a better ability to make corrections, deal with heavy seas, make turns and really dig in when needed.

2) It was a bother on rivers (and I do a fair amount of river travel) as it was more difficult for me to execute turns and it seemed harder to avoid hitting obstacles such as strainers and even just staying far enough away from the river bank. If you do much back water and stream exploring the double blade can often be too wide for those narrow creeks.

3) I did get wet, even with a pair of drip rings. I also get wet with a single blade when I switch sides but not as wet as I did with a double blade.

4) A double blade is faster and easy to keep a straight line but not that much faster than a single blade. I never had any trouble keeping up with solo paddlers who used a double blade when I was using my single.

In the final analysis for me the extra speed did not make up for the lack of control so I sold my double blade to a fellow bwca.com paddler who I am sure enjoys it. Double blade works for many-it just wasn't a solution for me.
 
03/03/2015 06:43AM  
I switched primarily to a double in 2011. I first got a 240 BB Slice but kept getting wet and realized I needed something longer so went to the 260 and fell in love with it.

I feel for traveling days for me anyway, it outproduces a single blade. In a wind I have more power to stay on course. I rarely get wet now but some dripping in the boat will happen. I've found that it's good to wear paddling gloves as I develop hot spots on my palms if I don't after going at it all day.

Someday I'll graduate to a carbon blade but at around $135 a BB Slice is a great starter.

 
MagicPaddler
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03/03/2015 06:54AM  
Once I picked up a double I never went back. I started off with a double that was too long which makes you go slower. Too long a double also causes the mussel between the back of the neck and shoulder to hurt. With a shorter double I get less water in the canoe than with the long one. Turns are slower and those tight creeks are sometimes a problem. I do mostly paddle open lakes. Most everyone who I have met that likes a double uses it feathered and people who can’t let a paddle slip in one hand don’t like it.
 
PortageKeeper
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03/03/2015 09:55AM  
Besides what already has been said, find out if your canoe works well with a double blade. My Tranquility loved a double blade, while my Magic does not. This disappointed me as I was used to bringing both paddles, and using the single when on a river or creek, then using the double when crossing lakes.
I never found a way to stay dry other than wearing rain pants. Not an issue in warm weather but on shoulder seasons I always had to have the rain pants handy.
 
03/03/2015 10:12AM  
I've used a double blade with my magic and had no issues...it was fine.
I just decided to abandon it so that I could paddle "properly". :)
 
Alan Gage
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03/03/2015 10:34AM  
When I started paddling it was with double blades in kayaks, including doing some racing with wing paddles in very fast boats. My double blade technique could certainly be improved but it's decent and is high angle.

That being said I really dislike double blades, especially in the wind. Not only do you have the resistance of the blade in the water but you've got the wind pushing on that blade waving way up in the air as well. When I was still paddling kayaks off and on I used a single blade with them most of the time and found it much more enjoyable.

I get soaked when I double blade. I've tried it in a canoe a couple times just for fun and got lots of water on me and in the boat. I'm sure with a long paddle and low angle stroke that's not such an issue but to me the long paddle and low angle removes any benefit of what's supposed to be a more efficient paddle.

With good single stroke technique you can out paddle just about everyone that's using a double blade. There's not a huge difference in speed but there is a lot bigger learning curve. Most of the speed difference will be seen if you try and sprint to max speed. Not much difference at cruising speeds.

Proper single blade technique for cruising would be 55-60 strokes/second with most of the power applied at the catch and the stroke ending before the hip, switching sides when needed (6-8 strokes?). For more speed you can up it to 65 strokes/minute and if you want to relax more you can back off the stroke rate and throw in the hint of a C, J, or Canadian stroke to negate switching sides.

But as long as you're happy it doesn't really matter what you're using.

Alan
 
MacCamper
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03/03/2015 11:31AM  
Although I am proficient with a single blade, bursitis in my shoulders caused me to switch to a double blade...and I'm loving the reduction in pain. Personal preference of course, but my right shoulder was killing me and negatively impacting my trips. The double blade has solved this issue.

Getting wet? Yup, but I love my chottas! That said, I am going to try this product by Rustolium. Anyone else use it?
Rustolium water repellent on double blade
 
Alan Gage
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03/03/2015 12:03PM  
MacCamper: It's interesting to hear how perceptions and experiences vary from person to person. With me it was the opposite. Short distances of 6-8 miles with a double blade didn't bother me much but during a 75 mile race I'd start with the double and after about 25-30 miles would have to switch to the single because my shoulders were killing me. I could single blade comfortably the remainder of the race without dropping too much speed.

How long was your single blade? When I first got a canoe and single blade it was too long for me and caused much shoulder trouble. Not only was the paddle too long but I was reaching too far forward with the blade and then pushing ahead with my top hand rather than down. A shorter paddle and better stroke has solved the issue.

Alan
 
MagicPaddler
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03/03/2015 01:08PM  
quote MacCamper: "


Getting wet? Yup, but I love my chottas! That said, I am going to try this product by Rustolium. Anyone else use it?
Rustolium water repellent on double blade "

Yes I used Never wet on my paddle last year. It needed to be replaced after a 14 day trip. It did help keep me dry. Feels like sand paper.
 
MacCamper
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03/03/2015 03:22PM  
quote Alan Gage: "MacCamper: It's interesting to hear how perceptions and experiences vary from person to person. With me it was the opposite. Short distances of 6-8 miles with a double blade didn't bother me much but during a 75 mile race I'd start with the double and after about 25-30 miles would have to switch to the single because my shoulders were killing me. I could single blade comfortably the remainder of the race without dropping too much speed.


How long was your single blade? When I first got a canoe and single blade it was too long for me and caused much shoulder trouble. Not only was the paddle too long but I was reaching too far forward with the blade and then pushing ahead with my top hand rather than down. A shorter paddle and better stroke has solved the issue.


Alan"


Interesting, my Winona single is 53 inches long and according to my shoulder and arm length it should be close, however I do agree that proper sizing matters. I think the biggest issue for me was damage done through repetitive motion over many, many years at my previous job. My current stroke uses much more of my core muscles than my arms. Don't know if I could trek for 75 miles. A good day for me is about 16 with energy to spare.

Thanks for encouraging me to check.

Mac
 
MacCamper
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03/03/2015 03:32PM  
quote MagicPaddler: "quote MacCamper: "



Getting wet? Yup, but I love my chottas! That said, I am going to try this product by Rustolium. Anyone else use it?
Rustolium water repellent on double blade "

Yes I used Never wet on my paddle last year. It needed to be replaced after a 14 day trip. It did help keep me dry. Feels like sand paper."


Did the 'white' and sandy appearance detract from your experience?
 
MagicPaddler
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03/03/2015 04:26PM  
quote MacCamper: "quote MagicPaddler: "quote MacCamper: "



Getting wet? Yup, but I love my chottas! That said, I am going to try this product by Rustolium. Anyone else use it?
Rustolium water repellent on double blade "

Yes I used Never wet on my paddle last year. It needed to be replaced after a 14 day trip. It did help keep me dry. Feels like sand paper."



Did the 'white' and sandy appearance detract from your experience?"

Well I did have several loons laughing at me.
 
kanoes
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03/03/2015 05:30PM  
ive never tried a yak paddle. besides the personal negatives that have already been mentioned ill add this, with a canoe paddle, one set of muscles rest when you're paddling on one side, switch sides and the other set gets a break. I don't think that happens with a yak paddle.
 
03/03/2015 07:56PM  
I use a double blade but it took me awhile to get used to it and master the dual-action. Acquired taste perhaps. Just my two cents.
 
03/03/2015 08:09PM  
I use a BB Navigator and really like it, yes I get a little wet but when warmer you dry fast, if it's colder I'll where my rain pants, it all comes down to what you like, every paddler is a little different.
 
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