Forums > Stand Up Paddle General

SUP long distance race paddle

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Created by TS5 24 days ago, 19 Nov 2018
TS5
34 posts
19 Nov 2018 1:09AM
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Hi, I am looking for a new long distance SUP race paddle. At around 85 sq.in. and 80 in. length it should be below 450 gr (15.8 oz). Any ideas?

paul.j
QLD, 2715 posts
19 Nov 2018 8:48AM
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TS5 said..
Hi, I am looking for a new long distance SUP race paddle. At around 85 sq.in. and 80 in. length it should be below 450 gr (15.8 oz). Any ideas?


Easy, this is all I use and its unreal!! 84.5sq.

Priced right, super light and very well tested!!

Jacko




DaveSandan
VIC, 659 posts
19 Nov 2018 11:15AM
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I have a KeNalu carbon paddle and it is great!

TS5
34 posts
19 Nov 2018 2:00PM
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Hi Jacko, how heavy are they?

DaveSandan
VIC, 659 posts
19 Nov 2018 5:23PM
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I like these because it's pretty much all they do so all the research is in making efficient paddles, the concave and shape of the paddle gives you a very stable pull through without the paddle going off center. My last paddle did shift sometimes while I pulled through the water, this one stays flat and being full carbon weighs very little which I notice a lot after a 13-14km paddle.


TS5
34 posts
20 Nov 2018 12:09AM
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Hi Dave, do you know what size and weight yours is?

LucBenac
213 posts
20 Nov 2018 12:24AM
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Should come around 500 gr in 78" length. The smaller blade Mana 82 is quite a powerful paddle and might be sufficient unless you are a really big boy. Once planted, it does not move.

DaveSandan
VIC, 659 posts
20 Nov 2018 7:22AM
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TS5 said..
Hi Dave, do you know what size and weight yours is?


Hi T55,
i have not weighed it and the website does not say but it's very light compared to non Carbon paddles I have had before so it's so easy to paddle with.
there are different sizes and shaft combinations available from them which can be confusing, I just spoke to my retail shop and he sorted it all out.

crazybula
NSW, 99 posts
20 Nov 2018 7:44AM
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I use a 425pro Weapon paddle after using some other brands that felt awesome but didn't have the durability for all-round paddling.
It weighs just over 400gm, has a strong shaft and smooth catch. The shaft is a little narrower than some but I'm used to it now. It is almost as light as my old ZRE paddle but more robust. It is my go to distance paddle but it gets used for longboard surfing as well because it feels so good.




TS5
34 posts
20 Nov 2018 4:56PM
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crazybula said..
I use a 425pro Weapon paddle after using some other brands that felt awesome but ...




Thanks all for your feedback so far.
Crazybula, looks on the picture like the 425 paddle blade does not have any profile (dihedral, power pocket, etc). Is that correct and doesn't that make the paddle exhausting to paddle long distance (20+ km or miles).

TS5
34 posts
20 Nov 2018 4:59PM
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PS What is all your view on and experience with paddle blade profiles in general?

crazybula
NSW, 99 posts
21 Nov 2018 6:52AM
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TS5 said..

crazybula said..
I use a 425pro Weapon paddle after using some other brands that felt awesome but ...




Thanks all for your feedback so far.
Crazybula, looks on the picture like the 425 paddle blade does not have any profile (dihedral, power pocket, etc). Is that correct and doesn't that make the paddle exhausting to paddle long distance (20+ km or miles).


I'll try and post a pic of a side shot of the blade when I can. It doesn't have a concave face like V-Drive/Lima or hard dihedral like a Trifecta/Black Project. It's features are more subtle, rounded with a slightly curved tip for power. There are no issues with it's movement thru the water - if there are it would be a reflection of technique and not design.
It has a lot of input from Georges Cronsteadt who has been one of Tahiti's best distance paddlers for quite a while. I'm confident it's long distance pedigree outshines my meagre performances.
It's catch is softer and cleaner than the Starboard Bolts I have used in the past but that is to be expected with a non-concave face. It's fairer to say it is a similar concept to the Ke Nalu Mana - another fine stick - but without the winglets.
All the paddles I have mentioned are stellar, but as a 50 year old racer/DWer the 425pro suits my needs better - a lightweight, robust paddle with a light swing weight and non-aggressive catch/release.
Overall you have never had a better field to choose for paddles these days. They are all pretty good.

DaveSandan
VIC, 659 posts
21 Nov 2018 7:07AM
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TS5 said..
Hi Dave, do you know what size and weight yours is?


Here is all the info.


crazybula
NSW, 99 posts
21 Nov 2018 7:58AM
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TS5 said..
PS What is all your view on and experience with paddle blade profiles in general?



Different paddle profiles have their own benefits/disadvantages relative to your needs as a paddler. Remembering that for over 95% of distance paddlers, the first thing to suffer as you fatigue is technique and some paddles get an unfair wrap as a result.

Concave faces are excellent for power at the catch from the get-go, but if you choose too large a size you can fatigue quickly if you don't have the physical strength/technique to maintain the "instant" grab. This is one of the reasons that Starboard changed there tip shape in the evolution from the Bolt to the Lima. The narrower base tip of the Lima moderates catch compared to the aggressive square tip of the Bolt, making the Lima a less tiring blade for most users. I still feel a concave face like a V-Drive/Lima/Bolt is the most efficient for paddling but you need to get the blade size right or it's a slippery slope for the smaller-shouldered paddler. I believe JP Australia also make a concave face blade.

Dihedrals are primarily there to help centre the blade as you pull through the water. This is a benefit that comes into play more as you fatigue and your technique suffers, thus helping maintain a straighter pull with less concentration. A "stronger" paddler with good technique is technically less reliant on having large dihedral - but they still may choose that style because of the "feel" it gives. And "feel" is an intangible that differs between paddlers but is a very important element.

Most paddles like the ONE, 425pro, Fanatic, Ke Nalu and the like, keep things simple with regards to design and that is the secret of their success. Rounded profiles, softer contours making ease of entry/release, with differences being in construction, face angle, tip curve and other small nuances to vary how the power comes thru as you pull thru your stroke. These are probably less fatiguing over time than concave face blades and also tend to have a nicer "feel". Great for older paddlers or those with shoulder history.

Often if it feels good, it is good and you'll paddle better. That is why you should narrow down your choice with the advice of others relative to your personal needs - but ultimately try and use a paddle before buying it if you can. With regards to distance paddling, the importance of getting the correct paddle is often understated with most of the focus on the board under your feet. Remember you will use the paddle up to around 3000 times an hour when paddling , and while your boards may change the paddle usually doesn't.

I apologise if I have left out any paddle brands, I have merely mentioned what I have experienced in my years. I have been involved with paddlesports most of my life and getting the paddle right has always been important to me. For disclosure I must point out that 425pro have been kind to me with paddles, but there are many great choices out there compared to when I first started.

Keep paddling .

TS5
34 posts
21 Nov 2018 9:11PM
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Thanks crazybula for the detailed answer. Highly appreciated. I fully agree that the paddle is most important. Dihedral seems to be used by a lot of paddlers doing long distances and not being bound by a brand. Technique simply suffers after 20 or 30 km. If I understand you correctly though you recommend concave paddle for long distance for being more efficient. Correct? If a concave paddle is more powerful than a regular paddle, would you say that an 88 sq.in. paddle with power pocket is equal to an 82 sq.in. paddle with concaves?

crazybula
NSW, 99 posts
22 Nov 2018 7:13AM
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TS5 said..
Thanks crazybula for the detailed answer. Highly appreciated. I fully agree that the paddle is most important. Dihedral seems to be used by a lot of paddlers doing long distances and not being bound by a brand. Technique simply suffers after 20 or 30 km. If I understand you correctly though you recommend concave paddle for long distance for being more efficient. Correct? If a concave paddle is more powerful than a regular paddle, would you say that an 88 sq.in. paddle with power pocket is equal to an 82 sq.in. paddle with concaves?


Roughly speaking that is about right - although I have no scientific data to back that up, only my experience. Concave faces resist water "spilling" from the face a little longer than conventional blades, so resistance is at a max early in the stroke. Hence they "feel" bigger than they actually are. I had a 83 inch Bolt and it felt like my 90 inch ZRE.

Square tips also contribute to early grab in the stroke, so newer shapes like the Lima marry a narrow/rounded blade tip with concave face to give a softer entry with firmness a little later in the stroke. It all comes down to your preference.

Adding to the confusion is shaft diameter and shaft flex.

There are sooo many good choices now that is why I suggest you try first where possible. The companies who specialise in paddles are now getting some stiff competition from the board manufacturers releasing their own paddles.

At the end of the day it all comes down to the paddler, and the paddler has never had it so good.

colas
2836 posts
22 Nov 2018 1:55PM
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Concave is more efficient, but the blade will want to "escape" to the side when you pull on it.
It is similar to airplane wings: negative dihedral (wings tips lower than the plane body) are unstable.

TS5
34 posts
22 Nov 2018 3:07PM
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crazybula said..

TS5 said..
Thanks crazybula for the detailed answer. Highly appreciated. I fully agree that the paddle is most important. Dihedral seems to be used by a lot of paddlers doing long distances and not being bound by a brand. Technique simply suffers after 20 or 30 km. If I understand you correctly though you recommend concave paddle for long distance for being more efficient. Correct? If a concave paddle is more powerful than a regular paddle, would you say that an 88 sq.in. paddle with power pocket is equal to an 82 sq.in. paddle with concaves?



Roughly speaking that is about right - although I have no scientific data to back that up, only my experience. Concave faces resist water "spilling" from the face a little longer than conventional blades, so resistance is at a max early in the stroke. Hence they "feel" bigger than they actually are. I had a 83 inch Bolt and it felt like my 90 inch ZRE.

Square tips also contribute to early grab in the stroke, so newer shapes like the Lima marry a narrow/rounded blade tip with concave face to give a softer entry with firmness a little later in the stroke. It all comes down to your preference.

Adding to the confusion is shaft diameter and shaft flex.

There are sooo many good choices now that is why I suggest you try first where possible. The companies who specialise in paddles are now getting some stiff competition from the board manufacturers releasing their own paddles.

At the end of the day it all comes down to the paddler, and the paddler has never had it so good.


Thanks again. Yes trying would be perfect but where I live (in the triangle of Germany, France and Luxembourg) there are no SUP stores and sending fixed shaft paddles here is prohibitively expensive. I am perceived as an alien when I sup onnthe river here with my drysuit. So my only choice is to spend anlot of investigating and thinking to norrow the choice down to one or two and then give those a try (if I can get a hold of them in Germany at all).

TS5
34 posts
22 Nov 2018 3:11PM
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colas said..
Concave is more efficient, but the blade will want to "escape" to the side when you pull on it.
It is similar to airplane wings: negative dihedral (wings tips lower than the plane body) are unstable.


Hi colas, I see the point but wouldn't the concaves also prohibit the side movement? In the end they are like multiple dihedrals, right? Could you elaborate the aireplane picture a bit more, I can't visualize what you mean?

TS5
34 posts
22 Nov 2018 3:16PM
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If I apply the rule for blade size weight in lbs divided by four plus 45 (Jimmy Terrell), then I would be on a 91 sq.in. blade. Does that mean I should opt for 91 with dihedral or pocket but smaller with a concave? Would 82 be too small? I am 6.1 tall and 185 lbs.

colas
2836 posts
22 Nov 2018 4:33PM
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TS5 said..
Hi colas, I see the point but wouldn't the concaves also prohibit the side movement?



Yes, I was not clear enough. With a smooth concave, the blade will tend to rotate on itself as well as going to the side:

The blade seen from above will go from the black position to the red one, a combo rotation + translation, rolling onto itself. And it is unstable as once rolled a bit on the side the forces will amplify the rotation


Dihedral on planes is explained in en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dihedral_(aeronautics)

This is why vertical ridges ares better for paddle to anchor the blade than concaves.

colas
2836 posts
22 Nov 2018 4:51PM
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TS5 said..
Thanks again. Yes trying would be perfect but where I live (in the triangle of Germany, France and Luxembourg) there are no SUP stores


Since you are in Gong "territory", I can testify for the quality of Gong SUP paddles (disclaimers: I am a Gong ambassador), but currently they have only surf paddles
gongsupshop.com/epages/box1707.sf/en_GB/?ViewObjectPath=%2FShops%2Fbox1707%2FCategories%2FSUP%2F%22Pagaies%20100%25%20Carbone%22

In my opinion they are among the best surf paddles (light, well built, a blade shape designed to glide in/on the water in turns, and just enough flex in the shaft to not hurt joint), but I would not recommend them for your use (long distance cruising), as they lack a vertical ridge to anchor them in the water. The qualities of a good surf paddle (to be used as a foil where the water flows across the blade) become drawbacks for long distance paddling (needing more sideways controls).

stubear
25 posts
22 Nov 2018 4:52PM
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So Colas, if I'm understanding correctly, does that mean a paddle such as the Hydro with the vertical ridge running through the middle of the blade is a 'better' design than a Lima/Bolt/V-Drive? This is speaking in totally scientific ideas - taking out user preference/technique etc? Or have I misunderstood?

TS5
34 posts
22 Nov 2018 6:37PM
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stubear said..
So Colas, if I'm understanding correctly, does that mean a paddle such as the Hydro with the vertical ridge running through the middle of the blade is a 'better' design than a Lima/Bolt/V-Drive? This is speaking in totally scientific ideas - taking out user preference/technique etc? Or have I misunderstood?


As far as I understood it so far yes in respect to control, no in respect to efficiency. Right?

TS5
34 posts
22 Nov 2018 6:50PM
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colas said..

TS5 said..
Hi colas, I see the point but wouldn't the concaves also prohibit the side movement?




Yes, I was not clear enough. With a smooth concave, the blade will tend to rotate on itself as well as going to the side:

The blade seen from above will go from the black position to the red one, a combo rotation + translation, rolling onto itself. And it is unstable as once rolled a bit on the side the forces will amplify the rotation


Dihedral on planes is explained in en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dihedral_(aeronautics)

This is why vertical ridges ares better for paddle to anchor the blade than concaves.


Thanks Colas, the wiki article explains it well (at least for me to get a general understanding).

TS5
34 posts
22 Nov 2018 10:47PM
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Would ZRE or Hippostick be a good paddle for long distance? I have never tried one.

crazybula
NSW, 99 posts
23 Nov 2018 7:21AM
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stubear said..
So Colas, if I'm understanding correctly, does that mean a paddle such as the Hydro with the vertical ridge running through the middle of the blade is a 'better' design than a Lima/Bolt/V-Drive? This is speaking in totally scientific ideas - taking out user preference/technique etc? Or have I misunderstood?


All the concave face paddles have a dihedral along the edges to achieve the same effect as a vertical spine. None of them are a "smooth" concave and I'm no scientist but if a concave is less efficient for anchoring the stroke than a "V" spined face I'll eat my sox.

If you have a high-end paddle and your stroke wanders I can guarantee it is technique and not design causing the issue. The amount of tech in paddles these days make them so user friendly there should not be any issues.


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TS5 said..
Would ZRE or Hippostick be a good paddle for long distance? I have never tried one.


Yes. All high-end paddles used by racers are good for long distance.

DaveSandan
VIC, 659 posts
23 Nov 2018 9:27AM
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TS5 said..
If I apply the rule for blade size weight in lbs divided by four plus 45 (Jimmy Terrell), then I would be on a 91 sq.in. blade. Does that mean I should opt for 91 with dihedral or pocket but smaller with a concave? Would 82 be too small? I am 6.1 tall and 185 lbs.


I had a Naish 82sq paddle with a bit of flex in the shaft and the cadence rate was increased dramatically compared to the Fanatic paddle I got with my first board. It felt great paddling but was to small for my height and weight and I am shorter and lighter than you. I now use a 90sq paddle as you know and the cadence rate is as good if not better due to the the weight difference but more importantly I can accelerate to a top speed much more easily.
Science is all well and good but experience is the only thing that is going to help you decide, get a 90 paddle in full carbon that you like to look of and use it. Concave, square, V shaped is not going to make a difference unless you want to be an elite paddler who needs to win by 100th of a second and even then talent and training will achieve the same result.
if you buy one and pay $600 for it trust me you will love it regardless of the science because you chose it and worked for it, don't over complicate it and really if you don't like it sell it on the net like I did and buy another one?

TS5
34 posts
23 Nov 2018 4:40PM
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Thanks all. Lots of great input

paul.j
QLD, 2715 posts
23 Nov 2018 8:33PM
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TS5 said..
Hi Jacko, how heavy are they?


Sorry mate I missed this,weight wise we look about 400g so pretty light!!

colas
2836 posts
23 Nov 2018 9:07PM
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stubear said..
So Colas, if I'm understanding correctly, does that mean a paddle such as the Hydro with the vertical ridge running through the middle of the blade is a 'better' design than a Lima/Bolt/V-Drive? This is speaking in totally scientific ideas - taking out user preference/technique etc? Or have I misunderstood?


As crazybula said, these paddles are not just "pure" concaves, and have also other design features that aim to provide a good efficiency/control compromise. I was speaking of the effect of a pure concave blade, to explain why you will not find such a blade on the market.

The Lima/Bolt/V-Drive are not pure concave, they look well designed (but I didn't test them).



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"SUP long distance race paddle" started by TS5