HOMEBREW OAR BLADE - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 04-17-2015   #1
 
Boise, Idaho
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HOMEBREW OAR BLADE

Has anyone done it or tried it? Interested in what people would have to say since I've never had one last very long on the rivers I enjoy...

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Old 04-17-2015   #2
LSB
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Huson, Montana
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Waddaya mean?
Like a oar blade you made yourself.
Or a beer called Oar Blade.
or...
Either way what's your idea?
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Old 04-20-2015   #3
 
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First, I used to break a lot of Carlisle blades, like one or two a year, then I bit the bullet and bought dynalites, which are 8 years old and going strong. So the simplest solution may be dropping cash on high end blades. With that said my least favorite response on the buzz is "go out and buy XYZ"

So as it turns out I'm a DIY addict and have thought about building blades but have not tackled it yet. I see some fairly significant hurdles but if you look at sawyers fancier blades it's got to be totally doable. The hard part as I see it will be attaching the blade portion to the shaft (of the blade) and fitting the male portion of the blade inside the oar. On their dynalites Sawyer uses an aluminum shaft filled with some sort of light epoxy or dense foam, but the AL always looks machined so I'm guessing size wise there is no readily available aluminum stock that fits snugly inside the oar shaft. I also think that AL shaft tapers towards the tip of the blade, then is welded to an AL flat strap that the blade material is then built around. Fabricating all this stuff without AL welding abilities or metal milling is where I see the main issue. That may be clear as mud and if so I'm sorry but it makes sense inside my feeble brain.

Building something like sawyers ash or pro-V blades may be simpler (simply laminate wood together) but they still incorporate an AL sleeve as the blade/shaft mating surface. You could always try a simple wood shaft for the blade but I bet it would swell and contract when wet/dry. I'm guessing that's the main reason for the AL sleeve (plus a little more strength).
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Old 04-20-2015   #4
Dipshit with the most.
 
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It seems like I bend a shaft every year to the point of being retired to back up status with my Carlisles but I have only broken one blade at the tip and it was still usable.

I do use the 6.5 not the wider size. Lots of low water miles too. They look a bit chewed on at times but still good.
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Old 04-20-2015   #5
 
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Buena Vista, Colorado
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I just brewed 12 gallons of a delicious porter, so what do I win? As for making a diy blade, it would cost me many times more then just buying one. For wood you would have to align the grain for maximum strength, and have mad carving or tedious sanding skills. For composite you should be using vacuum bagging and lay your cloth for maximum strength. Just like going for Cataraft shafts trump Carlisles, buying a good blade will trump trying to make your own. Unless you have lots of time on your hand and you want to try to make your own. In that case, just go for it and report back here how it goes.
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Old 04-20-2015   #6
 
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Hampden, Massachusetts
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7-ply plywood 1/2" thick. $20 for a 2'x4' sheet. Makes 6 blades that are ~8" wide 24" long. Cut the corners, sand some edges....a little polyurethane.(multiple coats over a couple days)..done. 6 blades for $30 dollars in materials. 20 minutes in store. Less than 3 hours labor. ....Bang off rocks all day with these blades....wedge 'em in the sand for the sun shade...

My oars shafts are homemade from aluminum polls repurposed from old civil defense stretchers I found in a fallout shelter...comparable to Carlisle shafts in thickness, gauge and flex/rebound...I wrap the shafts with black gorilla duct tape to prevent scratches. The tape also lets the shafts slide just right on the oar lock (bare aluminum and brass too little friction). Blades held in place with two bolts hex bolts.
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Old 04-20-2015   #7
 
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Old 04-20-2015   #8
 
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Old 04-20-2015   #9
 
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Old 04-20-2015   #10
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Damn! I'm impressed!
I also see no reason that one couldn't do that with broken off carlisle guide paddles, would just shorten them a bit. Used to see them break all the time at the top of the blade when i worked on the Ark.
Now i really want to try doing that!
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