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Old 06-14-2010, 08:44 PM   #21
charlie wilson
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GB:

I doubt there is much chance John Winters believes a double cambered blade creates lift. [A single cambered backface with a straight powerface would.] I always wondered about the "high lift" adjective, but I've just moved this spring, and my J Winters "the Shape of the Canoe" is in one of the last 23 boxes, and not those on top of the pile in my new office either. I've found his Canoesport Journal articles, but the term is not used in either of the two pieces describing his paddle experiments. Later.

Bevy:

I hadn't thought of turning a paddle upside down for shock effect, but pretty easily done. Once a yaw couple is initiated, and it doesn't take much, a hull will skid through a 90 dg turn, all we need to do is heel it down, smile and wait.

When you cloths-lined the Jet Ski guy, did you wrap the rope around paddle shafts? I'd think hand holding could cost fingers or, at least, a nasty rope burn.?

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Old 06-15-2010, 06:26 AM   #22
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paddlemaking class

Carve your own traditional wood paddle. Caleb Davis will be at the Old Forge Arts Center on July 22 to guide you through the process. I can personally vouch for the quality of the finished product. I've been using two of Caleb's paddles for 18 years now. The ottertail is my primary recreational (non-racing) paddle that I have used heavily over the years - it's still in great shape. The balance and hand feel are far above any commercial paddle of the type I have lifted.

From the Old Forge web site:
"Caleb will supply prepared one-piece cherry paddle blanks, work tables, and the necessary tools for students to complete their own paddle. All work will be done with hand tools. The paddles are of the traditional shape which is usually longer and narrower in the blade shape. Caleb will give a brief history; describe the different shapes, sizes, and the advantages and disadvantages of each style. Students will leave with a completed paddle that only needs a final sanding and coating."

Caleb is well known for his high quality "animal tail" paddles. He is an excellent instructor and a great story teller as well as entertaining. You can also find a couple of his instructional videos at Newfound Woodworks.
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Old 06-15-2010, 08:55 AM   #23
Crazy Beverly
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Originally Posted by charlie wilson View Post
I doubt there is much chance John Winters believes a double cambered blade creates lift. [A single cambered backface with a straight powerface would.] I always wondered about the "high lift" adjective, ...
I suspect that John Winters was referring to the high lift laminar flow airfoil research done for the P51 mustang fighter-plane back in WW2. He should have abreviated it "laminar flow" cross sections instead of "high lift" cross sections

http://www.aviation-history.com/theory/lam-flow.htm

I think the thickness of the center of the beavertail has to be sufficient to keep the flow of water across the paddle face, during an edge first stroke, laminar across as much of the face as possible. The contour would be important as well. An angular contour, 4 flats with a ridge down the center, wouldn't be good, but something akin to the waterline footprint of a super long and absurdly narrow canoe should be ideal. The obvious worst case is a Carlisle paddle with the ridge of the shaft in the middle of a flat surfaced blade.

The right contour should cut down or eliminate vibration as well. It looks like long thick wood has some distinct advantages over short sometimes vibrating synthetics.
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Old 06-15-2010, 09:29 AM   #24
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.......something akin to the waterline footprint of a super long and absurdly narrow canoe should be ideal.
The catch in guessing the optimum cross-section comes when considering that both edges function as both leading and trailing edges at different times. If not for that, a fairly blunt leading edge and slender trailing edge as found in boat rudders and such would be my best guess. You don't suppose that looking at what has evolved over the years might be the best approach.......
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Old 06-15-2010, 11:33 AM   #25
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... You don't suppose that looking at what has evolved over the years might be the best approach.......
I think that if we applied the technical expertise and computer power of NASA when it comes to matters of laminar flow, the result would be much like an average teenage Native American would have carved back in the year 1450. They already had it perfected. All we have to do is figure out what they knew.

Never underestimate primitive tech. Europeans were here for centuries before we built any structures bigger than what the indigenous people built at Chaco Canyon!

The latest great "advance" in paddle design, that I saw at a canoe show back in March, is a plastic T grip, round carbon fiber shaft and a blade that looks like a 2 pronged fork with a web between the prongs! With 1 inch + thick "prongs" down both sides of the blade and a thin synthetic web between, the so-called paddle would be even worse than a Carlisle for any stroke other than straight ahead. That's not evolution. That's devolution!
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Old 06-15-2010, 11:50 AM   #26
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Beverly
I definitely agree with you, but with one caveat. People crafting tools for their own use are usually the best designers of those tools but all designers are constrained by their technology. Since ours is more advanced than even a quarter century ago, we may be able to design thinner where thinner would be better, lighter if lighter would be better, and so on. But I fully agree that we won't do any better in most details.
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Old 06-15-2010, 05:07 PM   #27
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Outfitting a Bucktail for Single Blade Paddling

This is a great thread, and glad to see there are others who prefer the single blade style to double bladed with pack canoes. I have a Bell Bucktail and would love to be able to paddle it with a single bladed paddle. It's designed with a soft seat glued to the hull/floor of the canoe, like the Hornbecks, but it seems to have the narrower shape and tumblehome to enable single bladed paddling. However, my understanding, from a post on this topic a while back by Charley Wilson, is that it's not built structurally for me to hang a seat or kneeling thwart from the thwarts. I have thought of making a kneeling saddle similar to what white water paddlers use, but don't generally do white water, and also have no experience making or using these. Anyone have any suggestions on this: other options, advice for building a saddle and best way to anchor it into the boat, etc.? Anyone paddled the Bucktail single bladed? If so, how did you set it up?
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Old 06-15-2010, 05:22 PM   #28
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IIRC, the craft on the left in this photo is a Bell Bucktail. It would seem to be set up for kneeling: not sure if that's a different construction to yours... but I didn't notice anything amiss when I paddled it with a single stick.



The craft on the right is our B/G Bell Flashfire.
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Old 06-15-2010, 05:44 PM   #29
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Gerry,

I have nothing specific to offer, but I have been scratching my head on just that problem for some time now.

The basic concept that seemed to me to have the most promise for a moderately skilled do-it yourself tinkerer has three main parts. From the top down, first, a seat. This could be made for the purpose, bought for the purpose, or adapted from some other piece of furniture. Second, a pedestal made from foam. Initially, for experimentation and development, 2" thick styrofoam would probably be the most economical. Third, the bottom part, 2" wide heavy-duty hook-and-loop tape.

I'm currently messin' around with an oval caned seat I made for another canoe. At 16" wide and 12" front-to-back it's too big for this situation but will do for experimental purposes. The current pedestal is made from three pieces of 2" foam on edge, taped together to make a pedestal 12" front-to-back, 8" side-to-side, and 6" high. I have not yet shaped the bottom of the pedestal to fit the canoe bottom but when I do I will do it by placing a sheet of coarse (60-grit) abrasive paper upside-down on the canoe bottom and working the pedestal fore-and-aft until it conforms to the canoe bottom.

Hopefully these ideas will kick-start your creative juices and you'll come up with significant improvements or all-new approaches. Let us all know what develops.
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Old 06-15-2010, 07:17 PM   #30
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Bob,
Once again, I like the way you think!. I also toyed with the idea of a pedestal seat or kneeling post for my DY Special. I sit and switch on the seat, but I'm pretty sure I would be more comfortable on some sort of kneeler. Anyone remember those funky kneel down chairs from the '80's...something like that, maybe.
I used to see paddling saddles, mostly for whitewater use, made from some sort of foam. These things had formed pockets for your knees and a butt pocket, imagine a pointy english saddle made from foam. But, I haven't seen these in quite a while, and even then, they were expensive in both dollars and lbs! BTW, the idea of attaching the seat pedestal to the hull with Velcro...fantastic!!
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Old 06-15-2010, 08:31 PM   #31
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I've used the minicell foam pedestals on a few of my past boats. The pedestals can be ordered from NRS http://kayak.nrsweb.com/boating/Minicell.

The foam can be further shaped to your desired shape and other pieces of foam can be glued to raise it or add knee wedges.

I used heavy duty velcro glued with a urethane adhesive to attatch the pedestal to the hull which made for easy adjustment and removal when needed.

Although more comfortable to me than a kneeling thwart or angled seat it takes up additional space.
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Old 06-15-2010, 10:06 PM   #32
charlie wilson
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Paddle shaping and pack Canoe conversion[s]

It's nice to think the first nation North Americans figured out all that needed to be known about paddles. That said, part and parcel of their knowledge was how to make effective ones efficiently. The Phi r squared formula for area of a circle indicated one must remove almost twice the wood from an 8" tree as a 6" tree to arrive at a paddle. Long slender bladed animal tail paddles were the state of the art until waterproof glue and modern composites became available. The hard fact that whitewater, flatwater sprint and flatwater marathon racers all use 8-8.5" wide paddles should be informative. Length still varied, the guys who have to do it all day long selecting ~ 18" blades, the over in three minute folks using ~ 24 in long blades.

There is nothing wrong with loving and using old-timey paddles, after all, most of us don't get paid to paddle, we do it for enjoyment, and we're free to choose gear we like. But, the guys and gals who do get paid, kinda, to paddle, use 8.5-8.75 in wide paddles, usually with carbon blades, and they do it for a reason.

Rudders are often fish form mostly because the leading edge lives in turbulence behind a boat. That obviously isn't true for paddles; even sliced they are in usually in clean water with laminar flow over the leading edge of the blade. A fish-form paddle probably wouldn't slice any better than a fish form hull paddles, and it would hopelessly compromise the go ahead process which is a paddles main reason for being.

In-water recovery is the most common use of slicing. It is worthy of note that in-water recovery works best on short strokes, cross forwards, back strokes, draws and pushaways, where taking the blade out of the water would slow successive strokes. Long, in-water recoveries mated to a forward stroke are ineffective because they induce increased drag and slow cadence, basically postponing successive strokes. It may look or feel cool, but it is inefficient.

There is also nothing wrong with converting a pack canoe to a kneeling canoe, but there are some issues.

Initially, a 12 ft pack canoe designed for a 200 lb burden placed low in the boat will be pretty unstable when that 200lbs is kneeling against a canted seat, its CG raised 8 inches. Secondly, pack canoes are often narrower than their larger tripping sisters. Taller paddlers may find their knees too close together to be stable, and their fannies thrust too high in the air by same, and are faced with the problematic need to mount their cane seat above the rails. This last is exacerbated by the fact that most pack canoes are shallow amidships, running closer to 11 in than the typical solos 12 in center depth.

Not to say those with experience and balance can't paddle the things, I paddles Pat Moore's little Adventurer and Reverie 1 quite a bit, but satisfaction will not be universal. The little boats accelerate quickly due to minimal wetted surface, but average sized folks cannot heel them far enough to lift the stems, so skidded turns are compromised. [Also note only the last two issues effect longer pack canoes like Pb's RapidFire and Hornbeck's new 17; they get increased volume through length.

Consequently, most pack conversions to kneeling should be undertaken for smaller paddlers for the above three reasons and one more. Most pack canoes are made as light as possible to improve portability, and, since the paddler sits on the bottom, the lamination engineer did not reinforce the sidewalls and rails to hang a seat and support the paddler's weight. This is a bigger issue with tumblehomed hulls than flare sided ones because the tumblehome that narrows the paddling station and improves shaft verticality amounts to a toggle.

The older BuckTail had flared sides, so is pretty wide at the rails for little folk but we did make a few kneelers for smaller paddlers. The one pictured is a Glass boat, and probably has two additional belly bands of 8 ox glass. Placid converts its hulls to kneeling use with a single foot wide, 44 in long chunk of 11.5oz carbon, which infuses nicely along with the rest of the hull. As the laminate guy involved in both boats, I'm concerned when non- SO Bucktails are converted and very worried when I hear of a Spitfire conversion.

Retaining a bottom mounted pedestal seat is another option, Placid has a high permanent floor mounted pedestal and a new, floor mount, slider that raises the paddler even higher. Unfortunately, they are in enough production demand that they are not available for placement in other hulls.

Foam makes an inexpensive pedestal that increases floatation and shapes easily with DragonSkin. It can also be mounted to sit the paddler above the rails. Most attachment include lots of contact cement and a capture of both front and back thwarts.

Nylon Velcro looses half its strength when wet, and seemingly the high bond backings are available only with nylon product. Pb tested an "Extreme" Velcro product for mounting spray decks on their hulls. It was wonderful at first but did not have enough cycle life to be appropriate for the use and, over time, the adhesive failed.

Pat Moore attached the FG pedestal in his Reveries with Dual Lock, a 3M product. I used it as a closure on portage packs for a couple years. Over time the bond to the boat failed, and DL has the problematic tendency to "sweater lock" on pile, and woven fabrics. It takes a knife to cut the item free and leaves a hole in the knee of one's wool trousers. Lastly both dual lock and Velcro accumulate river mung over time and pretty much cease to function. Dagger's use of hook and loop to set seat and backrest in the Tupelo was not satisfactory over time.

There is a reason that cane seats are the industry standard, maybe for the same reasons paddles used to be 5 in wide. But, the bottom line on pack canoe conversions is it is best to start before the hull is laminated so it can be strengthened where needed, and conversions should be limited to smaller paddlers to maintain adequate sidewall strength and stability.

Last edited by charlie wilson; 06-16-2010 at 01:24 PM.. Reason: spelling, more information
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Old 06-16-2010, 06:58 AM   #33
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MY Wee Lassie

I just measured my Savage river Wee Lassie. 11'7" long,27" wide, 10'deep and no tumble home. I am 5'10' 175#. It worked with me and a 35# pack on lots of trips enjoying the kneeling seating position with a single blade. While it's is somewhat tender,with my average ballance and skills it does fine. I would prefer it were a shallow arch hull instead of a shallow V -the initial stability is low. The seat is hung from aluminum angle rivited to the foam ribs on the side walls. I ordered mine in carbon/kevlar in the heaver layup with an extra kevlar layer. I don't know of another boat that will do what it does at it's weight. I would like to find a lighter seat though. It now has an Essex countoured ash/cane one.
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Old 06-16-2010, 07:08 AM   #34
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paddles

I use both types of paddles,but an advantageof long narrow paddles not mentioned is how well they do with an inwater recovery. I made voyager style paddle with a 5'X 32' blade. In deep water I is great for a slow cadence stroke with an in water recovery which is very restfull and easy on my shoulder. I wonder if there if there is any proof to the idea that the deeper water under more pressure provides more resistance to the paddle "slipping" through the water. It sure feels that way. I use a straight Zaveral in mu packboat.
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Old 06-16-2010, 07:40 AM   #35
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Anyone have any suggestions on this: other options, advice for building a saddle and best way to anchor it into the boat, etc.? Anyone paddled the Bucktail single bladed? If so, how did you set it up?
thanks
Gerry
There are 2 glass Bucktails, that I know of, in the club I paddle with. Both are converted to single bladed use. Just scrape the foam tractor seat off the bottom and glue a minicell foam block in it's place. Then glue the tractor seat on top of the minicell block.

In both cases a 3 inch lift was used for a seat height of 4 inches. 6 inches would be better, but the Bucktail is a little boat and in both cases paddlers well over 200 lbs were involved.

The minicell booster seat puts the same stress on the hull as the original seat and the only problem encountered was squirrels chewing the foam over the winter.
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Old 06-16-2010, 05:48 PM   #36
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.....Just scrape the foam tractor seat off the bottom and glue a minicell foam block in it's place. Then glue the tractor seat on top of the minicell block.
Wanting to do a little experimenting with seat angle as well as height, I sketched out this pedestal:

(I just discovered that the drawing won't show unless you're logged in and I don't know how to fix that.)
My intent is to make it from odds and ends of 2" thick styrofoam. Sorry about the lack of dimensions; it was a quick-and-dirty sketch. Overall, not counting the seat, it's 8" x 8" x 8". If the first tryout at that height is a wet one, I'll trim from the bottom (cutting off is always easier than cutting on) For openers, I'll just tape the tiltable top part to the fixed bottom part. A final version will depend on what I discover messing around with this one. I don't have a seat the size of the one shown so I'll probably use the one I do have which is too big, really, at 12 x 16. Bev's idea is best; use a tractor seat from an existing canoe. But I don't have one .

Wide open to suggestions before I start cutting foam.

bob
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Old 06-16-2010, 06:12 PM   #37
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Wenonah sells tractor seats.
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Old 06-16-2010, 06:14 PM   #38
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Wide open to suggestions before I start cutting foam.
I've no idea whether seeing what works for us will help... but my daugher and I rather like this saddle!



The (very ugly) high back has actually come away since that photo was taken: seems to me to be an improvement!
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Old 06-16-2010, 07:15 PM   #39
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Wenonah sells tractor seats.
Charlie,
I have no doubt, though they don't list them on their web site, but as you mentioned recently in another post, caned seats are more comfy than an impervious, unventilated seat, or something to that effect.
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Old 06-16-2010, 07:31 PM   #40
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Snowgoose;
Thanks for that picture!!! I've seen that seat on numerous websites that sell them but your picture is the first one that I've seen that is really informative. If I was quite confident that I knew what I wanted, I'd be tempted. But I can't afford the (reasonable) $70 price unless I'm sure it will be right. Hence the experimental version.
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