• Edenwood Paddle Review

    Cailbach (Tim) posted up a few paddles he made a while back in the Made by Members section. Since then he has taken this a step further and now has a website (http://www.edenwoodpaddles.co.uk/) and is taking the paddle making a step further.

    As part of this he asked me if I would review one of his paddles. An offer I was only too happy to accept.

    From giving the details of the paddle I wanted to it being complete was about a week. Tim tells me this is not far from normal but can be longer due to other commitments and orders. It was another couple of days in transit, then it was with me.

    Eagerly I opened the box. What I found sold me on this paddle right at the get go.

    Tim sends you the whole of the piece of wood the paddle came from. He has just separated it into shavings and the paddle. It immediately made me think of the old saying,

    Q: "How do you carve a paddle?".
    A: "Get a piece of wood and cut away everything that is not a paddle "

    The simple act of seeing the paddle and the shavings that had been cut away to reveal the paddle immediately bonded me to it. It made me feel linked to its creation, which is a bit unfair on Tim because he did all the work.

    I spoke to Tim about this and it is not any sort of marketing ploy. Indeed until I mentioned this to him he had not thought of it in that way. He had purely been wondering how he could pack the paddle with a focus on it not being wasteful of materials. Speaking of which the shavings made great kindling for my fire at home.

    So with the box open it was time to get a look at the paddle itself.

    A thing of beauty isn't it?

    I had chosen an Ottertail and as is usual with a custom made paddle I got to specify the shaft length, wood choice and grip shape. Mine is Ash.

    Tim has these branded with is own logo which looks very professional as does every aspect of the canoe. Indeed these are so well finished it is almost hard to believe this is a hand made product.

    Of course it is all very well having a beautiful paddle if it paddles like a plank. Now paddles are a very personal thing. I have tried lots of peoples paddles and almost every one I have handed back with no pangs. I have always preferred mine. Of course a lot of this is due to familiarity, however, I can tell you now if I was handing this paddle back I would have serious pangs.

    It is a joy to paddle with. I am pretty much a one paddle guy. I take two with me every time I paddle. An Ottertail Lloyd made for me and a whitewater one made in wood. The whitewater on never gets used.

    Below is the Edenwood paddle next to the one Lloyd made.

    As you can see from the picture above I use Lloyd's paddle all the time. It is a deapwater paddle that I use in shallow water, whitewater and even breaking though ice on occasion, although I am planning on not doing that again as it was a bit hard on it. However, it looks like the new choices will be the Edenwood paddle as the number 1 paddle with Lloyd's as my spare.

    When ordering the paddle I asked Tim to leave the end a bit thicker to put up with the abuse I give my paddles. Pushing off from shore etc. Tim told me not to worry as he reinforces the tip with a resin insert. Seems like he has thought of everything.

    I have not talked that much about how the paddle feels to use because it is hard to elaborate over "superb", also yours will feel different. Depending on the style, shaft length, wood choice and grip, yours may feel entirely different. What is worth emphasising is the quality of the finish.

    I have rarely handled a paddle that felt so well made. It is clear a lot of care has gone into its production. This care is not, I feel, reflected in the price. At present the paddle reviewed costs 85 plus 10 for postage in the UK. I may not be looking hard enough but pound for pound I have not seen a paddle to compare to it. I expect at these prices Tim will have quite a few orders on his hands.

    In summary, in case you have skipped to the end, a strong recommendation from me of Edenwood Paddles.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Edenwood Paddle Review started by MagiKelly View original post