Sunday was a bad day for equipment. Things got busted up. Big Chad snapped his one piece C4 paddle right at the bend from shaft to blade. That thing went off like an M-80, pitching Chad onto his face and pissing him off. I snapped another leash, in head high surf. This kind of stuff sucks!
Photo: Broken leashes become toys for Lilly. It ain't funny, and it ain't right!
I think our gear can be radically improved- especially if you're dropping three hundred bucks on a paddle. In the last year, I've witnessed four paddles snap in half. Each paddle was less then six months old and one paddle was brand new! Personally, I wouldn't mind a heavier paddle if I knew it was bombproof. I'm certain it can be done- it's just going to take somebody to get their act together and make the "KONG PADDLE". The KONG might be a one piece titanium paddle that big guys like Chad can't snap. If you have to buy two paddles in a year, you've just dropped close to seven hundred dollars, I'd rather spend six bills on a titanium wonder scoop that I know will last. Bring us the super paddle- or at least send us one to abuse.
I've broken just about every type of leash. And from the reading I've done, so have you. I've broken the curly ones, the long ones, the thick ones, the hand tied, the swiveled- you name it, I've snapped it. The cost of a broken leash is nothing compared to the damage that a loose board could do to those on the inside. And how about the damage that some hungry rocks could do once the board bounced all the way to shore. A $1600 dollar board deserves a better leash.
This is a call for specialized equipment. I've got some of my own ideas regarding leash design (I think a virtually unbreakable leash could be made). I want your equipment feedback. What's endured for you guys? I'd like to know the specific names of paddle surfing products that have lasted at least a year. I'm particularly interested in paddles. I'm even more interested if you're a big guy (200 lbs plus). I don't think that there's a paddle or leash that would last a year of normal paddling in the hands of myself or Big Chad. What's your experience?