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Yeah-agreed on the "Patina" and the river hag battle scars. I have some of my Grandfathers smokers that were given to me as my first set of oars. They are likely 40(+) years old and still row fine. Ive refinished them twice since they were given to me almost 20 years ago. Just too short for my current set up.

Agreed-after seeing CB bob's oar snap picture-you can see the De-lamination. Seems like either glass or carbon weave in this area is a no brainer. Hard to say if that was from water/weather seepage BEFORE the break or the break actually caused it. Could have easily been a combination of both I suppose.

SO-I really like the look of your Jatoba/CVG blades. Very Custom. and semi-rounded or oval would add a nice touch to the custom side.

Im thinking along the lines of Modernizing my blades so to speak with some colored fiberglass/carbon twill weave.

Check out the link...
https://compositeenvisions.com/carb...7.html?zenid=b65559fb6ffd2fe2e21c5a4cc4410f53
 

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Discussion Starter #63
I checked out that twill. Very cool but too modern for my oars.

I'm hoping to build a dory in the near future and want to keep them more classic looking to compliment a wooden boat.
 

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Discussion Starter #64
Update:

Almost ready to cut the blade flat tapers on the other two sets.

I'm stoked about the pattern of the "Hawaiian/leaf" pattern blades. My buddy is working with his mom to carve some really cool designs on them.

The "v-lam" cedar blades got a small block added to the top so we can cut a flatter taper at the top of the blade without cutting as much into the meat of the blade. (see small strip for general blade taper)
 

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Those are looking great!! The cedar laminations are really going to look excellent with finish on them.

Just going to piggy back my progress on with yours....
My CVG came in a week or so ago. I purchased my wood as S4S (surfaced four sides) to save some time in the shop. My oars will be 10' long and I'm planning to add some modern composite twill and weave.

I also purchased some 3' long carbon/Kevlar sleeves for the shafts and some carbon/orange colored fiberglass twill for the blades. Along with adding some strength to the oars it will add some style and uniqueness.

I'll be making 4 oars(two spares). I purchased just enough wood to rip the two boards in half and use the extra rips as blade material. Initially I'm thinking of going with shoal cut style blades. I started using some Cataracts with cutthroat blades awhile back and have found I really like them....

Just a few early pics of the wood and the intital run with the round over bit.
 

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Discussion Starter #69
Awesome. I'm excited to see how yours turn out with the twill.

Could you imagine the effort it would take to plane those shafts round...by hand!? Huge thanks to CBRob for the suggestion to use the roundover bit!!

With the CF/aramid sleeve, I'd definitely recommend thinning your shafts down toward the blades to save weight...and with solid fir core blades, you should be able to go pretty thin as the carbon faces will add a LOT of stiffness. We went for 5/16"+ at the edges/tips and I'd think you could go thinner than 5/16" at the edges.

I need to weigh my fir/jatoba oars and compare them to the other guys' fir/cedar oars.
 

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No kidding..+1 to CBRob on the roundover bit!!

Yeah-I've been pondering the blade thickness.
Thanks for the tips
I could probably get by with 3/16"...?

I plan to cover pretty much the entire blade.

For the shafts-
My smokers measure 1.75" almost the entire length from the handle to the neck. The neck slims down to 1.5 and blends into the blade
I'm thinking I can potentially get by with 1 5/8" for the shaft with the added woven sleeves. I don't want to end up with overly stiff oars and pretty much negate the wood feel.
 

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Discussion Starter #71
Yep, I think those are good dimensions--very similar to Sawyer's Squaretops with the carbon wrap that are 1 9/16" at the outside of the wrap.
Mine are 1 1/2" x 1 5/8", but I don't have the carbon wrap. That neck dimension was the point I was (and am) most nervous about.

3/16" at the tips is thin...but with carbon over fir, you should be pretty strong. Rocks are really your only worry. Worst case, you could build it up after damage with additional glass, carbon, or dynel. You need impact resistance, not flexural strength.

We coved the other set of cedar-bladed oars tonight. They are stupid light. Balance point is a full 6.5" above the center of the oar!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #72
Weighed my old fir oars and new fir/jatoba oars. My bathroom scale isn't perfectly accurate. It told me they're all 8.6 lbs. I just can't believe that EVERYTHING is 8.6 lbs. Weighed 3 together and got 26.5...1/3 of which is 8.8lbs....but the fir/cedar oars can't possibly also be 8.6lbs.
So, I need to check again with a lower scale range.

Coved the cedar bladed oars. Deciding on blade shoulder and tip shape.
 

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You're a true craftsman, these are just incredible.

Sent from my SM-G965U using Mountain Buzz mobile app
 

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Discussion Starter #74
You're a true craftsman, these are just incredible.

Sent from my SM-G965U using Mountain Buzz mobile app
Thank you sir. We're really having fun with these.

This oar project is getting me fired up for a dory build!
 

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Discussion Starter #75
New distraction....I am waiting to catch up my friends' oars to mine with final shaping and epoxy flow coat before we do the fiberglass tips.

...so now that the season is over, I'm remodeling my old oars again. Making them all square tops. I feel like Oprah. "You get a square top! You get a square top! Everyone gets a square top!"
 

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Discussion Starter #76
Yeah, I'm already working on 10 oars, let's play with 6 more!

Read up on 'cove cutting on the table saw'.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qe5ZeSX-_g0


I cut coves on 3/4" x 1 3/4" wide strips so they fit over the 1 3/4" diameter of my old shafts.


Took a coarse rasp to the oars to knock off the old varnish/epoxy and give a good rough surface for the coved boards to bond do and glued/clamped them up. They will then get 3/8" x 2 1/2" caps glued on...after sanding the squares down, they should end up around 2 3/8" square. These strips are hemlock/fir. the flat strips will be cherry.
 

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Thats good work on converting those old oars to square tops!! I always love it when something old you made years ago can be brought back to life again with some creative thinking.


I'm 3 oars out of 4 on shaping and final sanding. I changed the shape and depth of my blades after my initial run. At first they had a cove cut...but as I will be laying the twill over the blade- I opted to re-saw them flat. So...I took them to the band saw.
After removing the excess wood from the cove cut, it made them noticeably lighter.
The entire blade is essentially 5/16" thick, and tapers as in flows into the neck.


I copied the cataract design on the grips with a convex cut for my thumb. I have a set of cataracts and really like that feature for blade orientation.
I used my band saw to cut the square width of the grip and did my final shaping with a combination of my grinder and belt sander.
 

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Discussion Starter #78
That's a really beautiful transition from handle to squaretop, stelz!

I think the only thing I'd do differently for yours would be to use spruce or cedar for a lightweight/low density core since you're doing wall to wall composite covering them.
...but with thin blades and a squaretop, I'm curious how the balance feels to you.


Even with the squaretops added to my old 9.5' oars, the old blades feel like logs (I planed down my blades on my 10' oars back in June)....I definitely need to carve out some serious weight. They average 3/4" thick...Doug Fir.
 

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Random, tangentially related question, since you brought up cedar...

I have four tall, straight cedar trees at the new place that will be coming down in the next few months. Good oar material? Get them sawed up into planks for other projects?

Btw, oars look sick and you should definitely build a dory. Like there was even a question.
 

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Discussion Starter #80
I have four tall, straight cedar trees at the new place that will be coming down in the next few months. Good oar material? Get them sawed up into planks for other projects?
Possible...but I think you'd have to go slightly thicker....and it really depends on the wood. If it's old growth, it might have enough summerwood/growth rings to be strong enough. I think you'd really want to reinforce it under the rope wraps with glass/carbon. I think the oarlocks would really crush cedar.

I haven't heard of many people using cedar for oars. Ash, spruce, and fir are the most prevalent, even among saltwater/flatwater/dingy rowing people and not just whitewater.

I have seen quite a bit of cedar used for paddles.
 
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