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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone have any experience with a Carbon Fiber Kayak paddle? Are they worth the extra money? How durable are they?
 

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Ok, to be more specific. I have a paddle with carbon fiber shaft and plastic blades. It might not seem like a big difference just holding one at the store but after paddling all day into the wind you'll notice a BIG difference. I personally went with the plastic blades because part of my fishing style is to get up close and personal trying to pull fish out of structure and do a lot of pushing off things like rock jetties and bridge pilings. I also wanted something durable enough to stand and pole around on shallow flats of dubious composition (ex: sand, mud, rock, oysters, etc.)

While I feel that carbon shaft+plastic blades is more versatile. If you plan to be in open conditions most of the time, all carbon fiber may be better for you. Just depends on what you plan to do most.

Good luck!
Alex
 

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Ok, to be more specific. I have a paddle with carbon fiber shaft and plastic blades. It might not seem like a big difference just holding one at the store but after paddling all day into the wind you'll notice a BIG difference. I personally went with the plastic blades because part of my fishing style is to get up close and personal trying to pull fish out of structure and do a lot of pushing off things like rock jetties and bridge pilings. I also wanted something durable enough to stand and pole around on shallow flats of dubious composition (ex: sand, mud, rock, oysters, etc.)

While I feel that carbon shaft+plastic blades is more versatile. If you plan to be in open conditions most of the time, all carbon fiber may be better for you. Just depends on what you plan to do most.

Good luck!

Alex

+1 Yes the carbon fiber paddles are worth it!!
 

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This is one reason I should have considered the plastic blades... Not gonna lie, I originally bought it for looks but after using it don't think I could go back.
 

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Here in Texas bay waters where I yak fish, I've pushed off many an oyster bed to get back into deeper water and both of my all carbon Werner paddles have never suffered any major or minor damage. My two paddles were bought back in 2005.
 

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I have a carbon fiber paddle with plastic blades. I really like how light it is and it really made a difference fighting a headwind out in the gulf.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the Info everyone!

Now the decision comes down to Full Carbon or Carbon shaft w/plastic blades...

Is there much of a weight difference between the two?
 

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Thanks for the Info everyone!

Now the decision comes down to Full Carbon or Carbon shaft w/plastic blades...

Is there much of a weight difference between the two?
There will be a slight difference in weight with the plastic blades weighing more than the carbon blades. But, there are other factors to consider such as age, weight, etc. I'll explain.

Yesterday, I had an annual physical (I'm now 64 years old) and they weighed me in at 156 pounds. With my kayak fishing, I usually have to travel long distances to get to my "honey holes" and I've been going to these same places since 2004. My paddle blades are "touring blades" meaning they are not too long at 19", but not as wide as a regular blade. The width of my carbon blades is just over 5". I chose these particular blades because of my small skeletal frame and my basically 150 pound frame since these blades are considered best for low angle paddling which I prefer over high angle paddling. High angle paddling is tough on my shoulder joints.

Now, the other factors. My all carbon paddle weighs in at 26 ounces in 220 length. Lets say a 220 length carbon shaft paddle with plastic blades weighs in at 29 ounces. The difference is only 3 ounces. That's not much in most everyone's eyes.

Now lets talk "swing weight". Let's say I have to make 2000 (or more) paddle strokes during my yak fishing trip. At 2000 strokes, those extra 3 ounces (29 minus 26) comes out to 6000 ounces which when divided by 16 ounces (1 pound) means I'm swinging/pulling an extra 375 pounds through the water for the entire trip.

At my 156 pounds, I'm going to feel that extra weight at the end of the day's fishing when it's brutally hot where I live (100 F degree days in the summer). I didn't want to feel those extra 375 pounds at the end of the day when I returned to my truck at the launch point. The extra energy required for these pounds would make me feel totally exhausted. Without dealing with that extra 375 pounds, I'm only tired, but not exhausted.

A person who weighs 200 pounds might or might not notice those extra 375 pounds of swing/pull weight. A person who weighs 225 won't notice it.

The above is from my own personal experience so it's basically "food for thought".
 
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