May became Paddle month in the workshop with new wooden Stand up Paddle board paddles taking shape, two different methods of blade construction led to some cool discoveries with the behavior of wood and fiber glass.
Paddle making is one of my favorite parts of the woodworking I do and I was really looking forward to getting started on these paddles. Firstly jigs and stencils were made up for the shaft, grip and blade.
Once all the timber was cut and cleaned up to size the first stage is laminating the shaft to include a cranked blade; the blade is set at 10 degrees to the shaft to aid the catch of the paddle stroke.
Once the glue has set and all the excess cleaned off, the blade and grip sections can be glued in place this is where the final size of the paddle is calculated, this is individual for every paddler.
The final shaping is the best part cutting and planing the rough shape first and then working to get the right shape and finish on the blade and grip, finishing with the rounding of the shaft using techniques taken from boat mast and oar making.
Sanding is a vital part of all woodworking it gives the final look and feel to the paddles the more it is sanded the smoother it feels in your hand.
As I mentioned I made a cool discovery when fiber glassing the 6mm blade the curing of the epoxy resin created the concave as seen in the picture, once I get it on the water I will be able to see how much of a cool discovery this was!