Subject: Re: Oars for my Wayfarer

From: Richard C Harrington <>

Date: Tue, 26 Mar 2002 19:21:48 -0500





I've 'cc'd Grame Geddes the UK Cruising Secretary and Ralph Roberts (also

a UK cruiser) so that they can respond as well if they wish.


Because of its wide beam and generous free board it takes a long oar to

comfortably row the Wayfarer.  An eight-foot long oar is the minimum and

not very comfortable.  A nine foot oar handles much easier.  Mine are 8

foot-10 inches--as long as will fit within the cockpit above the seats.

Whether a 10-foot long oar will begin to become too ungainly I'm not

sure.  I would only go to the trouble of the extra long oars if it is

easy to do (i.e., two pieces as you suggest), or I was expecting to be

doing an awful lot of rowing, such as river sailing of something of that

nature.  You mention being stuck out on an inland lake--not the most

difficult situation. 


I originally contemplated two piece oars (wooden ones from "Tenny" in

Maine).  I was talked out of it because I was told that they would

eventually become a problem and would tend to bind, or become too

loose--something of that nature.  In other words I was told that the

joint wouldn't hold up to a lot of abuse.  High quality spruce oars such

as made by "Tenny" have tapered shafts, well formed blades, and are well

balanced.  They are good 'rowing oars'.  Also they are designed for good

rowing type oar locks (open or closed yokes) have real 'leathers' to

receive the yoke.  I think that aluminum oars, or FRP oars, are not

really meant for doing much rowing.  They are a utility oar used to

control and direct the path of the raft.  However, for only occasional

use on an inland lake, with no seaway to contend with, etc., they may

suit your purpose okay.


Good luck--DICK


On Tue, 26 Mar 2002 10:32:55 -0500 "Tom Lee" <>



> Jim

> I purchased number #3446, frp w/wooden decks last august, haven't

> accumulated alot of sailing time yet but the days are coming

> soon.....

> The wind died last fall while in the middle of an inland lake so: I

> grabbed

> the paddle that came with the boat and after much struggle returned

> to the

> ramp. Never again.

> I've read all the info including your take on the best choice for

> oars but

> have become confused by all the choices on the market. It seems the

> carbon

> fiber or aluminum models have become the rage with the river

> rafters, and

> can be broken down to make transporting 10' a lot easier. Can you

> think of

> any reason why I wouldn't want to take that approach if it means

> longer

> oars?

> I would appreciate your input.

> Tom Lee  Grand Rapids, West Michigan