New Innovative Oar Grip Design - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 07-30-2018   #1
 
chiefstilh20's Avatar
 
East Wenatchee, Washington
Paddling Since: 1976
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New Innovative Oar Grip Design

I currently use Cataract rope wrapped oars with convertible oar rights which allow me to feather oars against the stop or flip down the guides for use by my daughter. My preference on the Colorado and smaller rivers is to have the ability to feather oars in or out of the water for efficiency and safety. On a raft trip down the Middle Fork in June I had the opportunity to see and actually use for rowing a river section, a final design of the Gilman Grips. From what I saw and felt, the surfaces allowed me to keep positions on forward/back strokes without as much gripping force with my fingers to keep the oars oriented correctly. Personally, I have a “strong” grip to keep oars positioned most of the time, but I can see how these would assist others with varying degrees of strength and skills and at times where every second/stroke counts. These grips were mentioned in a thread a while back by a gal that was having wrist/hand issues and I didn’t want to resurrect that older thread.

My personal opinions and no – I am not getting paid/compensated in any way. Interested individuals can do their own search and research.

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Old 07-30-2018   #2
 
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Kalispell, Montana
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I first tried Gilman Grips on the Main last month. My first time ever rowing without Oar Rights...and it happened to be on Day 4 when we ran Big Mallard. Coming from a kayaking background, it was nice to have the index in hand and not think about where the blade was. Even when I got on a bad line, I didn't even think about the oars or grips when I was pulling hard to stay out of the hole at the bottom.

I'm intrigued.

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Old 07-30-2018   #3
 
Bayfield, Colorado
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I put my hand around one at the hot spring on the main, felt real good to me. Didn't row them though. Dude had a bad ass raft.
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Old 07-31-2018   #4
 
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Kalispell, Montana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesthomas View Post
I put my hand around one at the hot spring on the main, felt real good to me. Didn't row them though. Dude had a bad ass raft.
Haha, you were in the group ahead of us?

I was in the yellow 156R with my daughter.
The one rainy day of the trip and it coincided with mile 22. Awesome!
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Old 07-31-2018   #5
 
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Salt Lake City, Utah
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I used a set on the middle fork two years ago. I swapped them out at Little Soldier ~mile 30 because I couldn't stand them anymore. The functionality of knowing the blade orientation based on feel is great. But the actual grips caused the muscles in my hands a great deal of pain because you are forced to grip the handle in a singular position rather than kind of loosely hold onto it. So you don't really get to relax your hands, plus the handles are a ridiculous $100.
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Old 07-31-2018   #6
 
Denver, Colorado
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I put a pair of cycling aero bars on mine, which is awesome because I can put my hands in different positions and get down real low and streamlined when the wind picks up or I want to row wicked fast.

Seriously, those grips do look pretty cool.
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Old 07-31-2018   #7
 
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lafayette or Grand Lake, Depends on mood, Colorado
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At the current price I will stick with standard handles. I just look at my set screw for the handles and know without looking at my blades if I'm squared up. Only takes a micro second to look. Never had much of a problem gripping oars, hope I get a chance to try out for free some day. Might change my mind.
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Old 07-31-2018   #8
 
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Lakewood, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
At the current price I will stick with standard handles. I just look at my set screw for the handles and know without looking at my blades if I'm squared up. Only takes a micro second to look. Never had much of a problem gripping oars, hope I get a chance to try out for free some day. Might change my mind.
I agree....they need to be less then $50 a pair for me to even consider them (i.e. the price of a set of the Oar Rights they are meant to replace). At $100 each, I can't say I'm interested in even trying them. It is kind of a non-starter for me anyways since I have Squaretops and these won't work with them. Obviously I don't mind spending a bit extra for something nice, but I'm certainly in the crowd that doesn't see these as particularly useful for me. I'm sure there will be people they work great for though.
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Old 07-31-2018   #9
 
Whitefish, Montana
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Electric-Mayhem I would like to point out that these grips were not designed to replace oar rights. They can be used with or without oar rights like any other grip. They are designed to be a high-performance oar grip and are not priced at $100 each as you stated they retail for just under $50 each but are only sold in pairs like gloves.

Full discloser I am affiliated with Gilman Grips and just wanted to clear up the facts.
Thanks Jeff
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Old 07-31-2018   #10
 
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Lakewood, Colorado
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Fair enough....seemed like the ordering section of the website did it one at a time....my bad. That is a heck of a lot better, but still expensive to the point of me not being interested for that reason alone. I know the pricing of these is probably set to a place where you can make the profit you need to be worth it... so my opinion should be taken with a grain of salt I suppose.

Most of the advertisement and press that you guys do essentially points towards these eliminating the need for oar rights...hence they are at least partially intended to replace them. They may help in other ways, but the primary reason to use these is to have a tactile reference for where the blade is in relation to the grip. While not tactile, oar rights provide that same level of confidence.
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