After my last post I was still unhappy with a lot of attributes of the paddle. Still was to heavy (even for a white water paddle) and it seemed bulky.
With that begin said I planned a lot more off the blade taking time not to rip a chuck out at this stage. I then took it to the stationary belt sander to thin down the spots that the planner wasn't getting. I find that the electric planner leaves it thinner at the tip and thicker where it ramps up to the shaft.
I also was not happy with the feel of the grip. The original pieces of Padauk and Ash were two inches think, which ment the grip was huge. Toot it to the belt sander as well and thinned it down . When you creating this T grip the best thing to do is to use the belt sander to get a shape on the top of the grip. Then use a thin strip of 50 sandpaper hook it under the T and grab the ends in different hands, then pull back and forth on it ( hope this makes sense) . I found it shaped the grip faster then the rasp.
|Whole Paddles like this|
I also went back and with the spoke shave and took more off the shaft. Since its Ash you can really thin it's down a lot well still retaining strength.
I didn't want to put a pattern on the blade (thought it would take away from the laminated process) but it still looked a bit to plain . I had heard that Padauk was used for dye and remembering that blue ash paddle from before I got an idea. I took a wet rag and opened up the shop vac with the red dust and rubbed the rag in it. I took the rag and rubbed it against the grain. The red dust got caught in only deep grain pattern of the ash giving this amazing effect ( see pic ) without the need for stain.
I gave the paddle a final few sandings working with a finer sandpaper each time. When finished the sanding process, it was on to the finish.
I heard that Padauk can loose its color if you don't use a uv inhibitor. I bought some teak oil ( said uv inhibitor right on the label ) and applied it. Very quick and easy to use.
Hope you enjoyed !
Now on to the next paddle, I have a plan to do a very original painted shaft. More to follow once I get over this cold !