Help me decide on new oars - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 12-27-2013   #1
 
Missoula, Montana
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 60
Help me decide on new oars

Upgrading my oars this winter. I am leaning towards Sawyer 9.5' for my 14' raft. Primarily used for whitewater day trips and multi days. Not very interested in counterbalanced weights in the handle. I want to get the small diameter shaft so that I can use my old carlisle blades for rocky runs if I don't get square tops. I have searched plenty but am bored and looking for some updated opinions. Anybody care to discuss?

Square Tops- Pro; Sounds like people love them, good flex, counterbalance, light. Cons- Expensive, can't remove the blade.

MX with V-pro- Leaning towards this setup. I like the idea of changing out broken blades and have friends who love this setup.

MXG- I like stiff oars but worry that they may be overkill.

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Old 12-28-2013   #2
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2012
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I'm in the same boat (hehe). I've had a set of Squaretops- they were stolen off my trailer on the way to the river. Nice oars- had a nice rebound to the flex- and were light weight and they float. Nice to have the counterbalance in an oar and still maintain the ability to float. Blades are part of the oar- the wood goes all the way thru- and is covered with the carbon fiber. You might also check their new offering- with a fiberglass/carbon matrix over the wood, instead of the carbon only. I'm not sure what that will do to the counterbalance effect, as the FG is heavier than carbon?

I've been rowing some Cataracts since the Squaretops were stolen- they've got a nice feel and if you add the Sawyer Dynalite blades, they balance out really nicely in counterbalanced form.

Kind of an embarrassment of riches with oars these days- the Sawyer stuff is nice, the cataract stuff is nice.... can't really go far wrong with any combo from either company. I'm thinking Sawyer shafts, Dynalite blades, and the Cataract adjustable counterbalance so I can dial in the weight just right.... Or another set of Squaretops!?
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Old 12-28-2013   #3
 
Costa Mesa, California
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Skip the V Pro blades. They have a great feel but I have had 5 of them split and one brake off at the insert. Not much warranty help from Sawyer other than they said they have strengthened the design.
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Old 12-28-2013   #4
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Apr 2010
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The square tops are SWEET! My buddy used them while on the Grand and loved 'em. Everyone was VERY jealous. They are beautiful and super strong. I think it would be pretty tough to break one of these. IMHO I would go square top and never look back.
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Old 12-28-2013   #5
 
Pinecliffe, Colorado
Paddling Since: 05
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My old timer river friend rows square tops with pins and clips and loves them. I believe they are built naturally counter balanced and love that they float. I think this is the set I will get someday. They feel nice and comfy to row, I like them or solid wood but I like the weight of the square tops. Loved them on the Grand as did he I wished I had em on my boat.
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Old 12-28-2013   #6
 
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Vail, CO
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If you're on the water a lot, Square Tops are worth the money.
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Old 12-28-2013   #7
 
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ChroniclesofGnarnia, Colorado
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Square Tops!
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Old 12-28-2013   #8
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
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7 years with v pros and only one broken.



Green wall starts at 3:20.if the blade didn't go the shaft would have.
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Old 12-29-2013   #9
 
Missoula, Montana
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Apr 2007
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Thanks for the replies, sounds like people love the square tops. My main reservation with them is that I wouldn't be able to replace the blades if needed. Anyone have a negative experience with the square tops?

oarboatman- Great video, looks like a blast!
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Old 12-29-2013   #10
 
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Vail, CO
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They also offer the ST/Dynelite combo with the Dynelite XHD or XD (?) Which is wrapped in another layer of carbon fiber for extra durability.

But if you just leave them in the bag when the water is low, you'll be fine.
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