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Old 12-16-2013   #1
Villainista's Avatar
Fresno, California
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 91
Oar Blade Shark Bite Repair, Cataract

So after seeing some other threads about shark bite repairers on Cataract oars I decided to give it a shot. I used all materials and tools that I had in garage, did not want spend an extra dime on this project. Had 2 damaged oar blades. Cut out the bite with a jig saw. Cut a piece out of the throw away oar. Sanded them to fit + prep for gluing. Bonded w/ 2 part adhesive (JB weld) mixed up glue and stuck them together.
Looks OK, took it down The SFA all good. Will use as spare in future.
We will see how it holds up,
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Old 12-16-2013   #2
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 883
Hi Villianista,

I've done that as well, with good success.

As an enhancement, I drilled several small holes longitudinally -- aligned as closely as I can -- in both the blade itself and the patch. I filled them with JB Weld, and inserted pieces of the stiffest wire I could find that would fit the hole. Lined up the pieces, forced them together with JBW on the other seams, and clamped.

Don't know if it made any differnence, but I posited that any additional structural strength in the joint was worth trying to achieve.


Rich Phillips

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Old 12-16-2013   #3
Andy H.'s Avatar
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,910
How aobut a Corcodile Bite?

Must be nice to be retired, Rich.

Long-tme Buzz sponsor Downriver Equipment had a Sawyer oar blade on the wall that had been nibbled on by a crocodile on one of Pasquale's African adventures. You could probably study it and determine the bite pressure needed to penetrate the blade if you REALLY wanted to.

DRE's former owner, Mike Prosser, was one of the oarsmen on the trip and had a bunch of great photos under the glass at the counter. Not sure if the blade or photos are at the shop under the new owners but it would definitely be worth dropping in on the guys next time you're passing through Wheat Ridge.

zbaird at, rowed on that trip too. There's even an IMAX movie/documentary about it - you can get to by following the link below.

Seems it was about six or eight weeks on the Blue Nile in Ethiopia.
Check it out.

Nothing in the world is more yielding and gentle than water. Yet it has no equal for conquering the resistant and tough. The flexible can overcome the unbending; the soft can overcome the hard. - Lao Tse
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Old 12-17-2013   #4
Villainista's Avatar
Fresno, California
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 91
I have never been attacked by an Alligator, but I do hope my repair holds up.
Rich, how come we do not see aluminum or titanium oar blades?
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Old 12-17-2013   #5
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 883
Hi Villianista,

My travels sure don't extend to places where there are big reptiles, with sharp teeth and immense bite pressure. Mine was attacked by a pickup truck tire on the ramp at WW, and pinched down against a small piece of rock.

That's an interesting question. I would guess titanium would be ruled out due to cost. Aluminum, well maybe in the right temper...

Somebody with a metallurgical background might be able to tell us about the relative merits of aluminum versus the materials commonly in use. Fabrication complexity, material cost, malleability, ductility -- stuff like that?

Have a good one.

Rich Phillips
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ark, blade, cataract

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