New oars, or re-laminate? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 02-24-2019   #1
 
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Boulder, Colorado
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New oars, or re-laminate?

I'm a little embarrassed to say that I've been on the same 3 Cataract 10' SGG's since my first boat, which my first wife and I bought (very used) in 1993. That old cat is long gone.

Currently running a '95 Aire Cougar (twin tube, 17'6") and a 2000 Aire Panther (twin tube, 15'). The sticks are from '93 or '94, and yeah, they've been unraveling for years. My wife and I have to handle them carefully loading and unloading, else we get the dreaded oar rash on our inner forearms. The handles are also pretty shot.

I could clear coat these, and keep 'em, or just bite the bullet and treat myself to 3 new ones. ($600 or so, depending on whether I get counter-balanced or not...) Maybe do both - can't have too many sticks, right?

I run the same frame for both boats - the 10's seem long for the Panther, so thinking about 9's plus 1' extenders, but that's more $$.

Anyone done a re-laminate on their old Cataract oars ? Or given the presumption that Advanced Composites has improved their manufacturing process since 1993, would the new sticks be the better investment?

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Old 02-24-2019   #2
 
Tres Piedras, New Mexico
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Sand em down and coat, I prefer 10' oars on a 14' boat, but its an avon adv and may be wider than your rig. Never been a fan of extensions, they are prone to jam up with sand and can be tough to get off. Really depends on your level of hoss.
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Old 02-24-2019   #3
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A bunch of coats of spar urethane will keep them from making you itch. Keep stacking thin coats for best results. A quart of it is $15 which is more than enough to do a bunch of coats on 3 oars. Not talking you out of new oars by any means but you don't NEED to trash the old ones assuming they aren't totally beatdown aside from the finish.
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Old 02-25-2019   #4
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beardance42 View Post
I could clear coat these, and keep 'em, or just bite the bullet and treat myself to 3 new ones. ($600 or so, depending on whether I get counter-balanced or not...) Maybe do both - can't have too many sticks, right?

You can't have too many sticks.


Fix the old ones. Quick sand and spar urethane is quick and cheap. Personally, while I use spar urethane on wood oars, it looks like crap (IMHO) on composite oars as it is an amber color.


I'd recommend sanding them down and use a clear urethane...or have the local auto body shop shoot it with clearcoat.
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Old 02-25-2019   #5
 
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Incorporate a UV-shield in your Spar Varnish. Sunlight is tough on wood and fiberglass.
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Old 02-25-2019   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zbaird View Post
A bunch of coats of spar urethane will keep them from making you itch. Keep stacking thin coats for best results. A quart of it is $15 which is more than enough to do a bunch of coats on 3 oars. Not talking you out of new oars by any means but you don't NEED to trash the old ones assuming they aren't totally beatdown aside from the finish.
I'm guessing they should be cleaned first, then sanded, then coated. (Let dry, coat again...repeat)

I know you'd use a paintbrush for doing a fence or patio - flat surfaces - what's the best applicator for oars? Maybe a short paint roller?

Think I'd do this before dropping the coin on new sticks. I could that use dough on something else - like a new mesh seat....
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Old 02-25-2019   #7
 
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Originally Posted by Beardance42 View Post
I'm guessing they should be cleaned first, then sanded, then coated. (Let dry, coat again...repeat)

I know you'd use a paintbrush for doing a fence or patio - flat surfaces - what's the best applicator for oars? Maybe a short paint roller?

Think I'd do this before dropping the coin on new sticks. I could that use dough on something else - like a new mesh seat....


Yeah, you don't want to varnish them if they're muddy! Haha.

Probably don't need much cleaning, the sanding will take care of anything on the surface.

Multiple thin coats with a brush. roller works well, but it is too easy to introduce bubbles into the layers. You can put your brush in a ziploc in the freezer between coats.

My favorite varnish recipe is 10 parts spar polyurethane, 2 parts naphtha, 1 part alkyd enamel hardener. Works well brushed, rolled, or sprayed. Hardens faster and harder than varnish by itself. The naphtha helps it go on smoothly, but mostly evaporates out before the varnish can run.

Do 4 or 5 coats to build up a nice thick coating, then wet sand the 2nd to last coat to get it good and flat. Last coat should be very thin, just to get a good gloss over the sanding.
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Old 02-25-2019   #8
 
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Thanks, MT.

Also, thanks to the wonders of Mountain Buzz Forum technology, an old thread on re-finishing Cat oars came up, and I found this:

https://cataractoars.com/customer-su...cataract-oars/

Gotta say, as bad as mine are, the test case they show in these instructions are WAY worse.

Already checked Lowe's and they have this stuff (Home Depot doesn't)...so looks like a weekend project on the way.
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Old 02-25-2019   #9
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i had to sand my oars all the way to the fiberglass. They were super cheap because they were super rough. they look beautiful now, I used 5 coats of spray spar urethane. the rattle can made it go on real smooth and even. idk. sell the old ones cheap and buy new. I'd like a pair of tens to go with my nines.
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Old 02-27-2019   #10
 
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I've used brushes, and spray cans. Never used a roller. Rattle cans of Spar varnish were the easiest application for me.
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