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Review of the Red Paddle Co Carbon & Nylon Adjustable 70-86″ 3 Piece Paddle

The carbon shaft and nylon blade 3 piece SUP travel paddle by Red Paddle Co returns for 2016. Also known as the River paddle for it’s super lightweight and performance oriented carbon shaft, and for the extra durable, tough as nails nylon blade with rubberised edge for the ultimate blade protection and durability. This paddle was designed to fit into the hands of someone who appreciates a quality paddle but is sometimes, well, most of the time, a little rough on their gear. Or, they paddle in locations like rivers or lakes where they may encounter rocks, logs or other obstacles that may damage a premium quality blade. Or, they have kids who appreciate a light shaft but who don’t necessarily look after the gear they enjoy to use so much. Anyway, it’s set up for an intermediate to advanced paddler looking for something that’s going to withstand the elements.

The package: The 2016 carbon and nylon 3 piece travel paddle breaks down into pieces no longer than 37″ which neatly fit into your inflatable SUP bag. If you leave the adjustable handle shaft section in the main shaft, you have fewer pieces to carry around but the overall length of these 2 combined sections goes out to about 41″. The extremely durable nylon blade measures 7 1/2″ across and 13″ to the shoulder, a good, comfortable medium sized blade for most paddlers.

The beauty of this paddle is you get the best of both worlds: 1. A shaft that is top quality carbon hybrid with good flex and rebound that transfers all your power into the water and forward motion but is easy on the shoulders, and 2. an extremely durable true SUP shape nylon blade ready to be beaten on rocks, sand or in the car. This paddle is great for someone looking to get into a premium level paddle but might be a bit tough on gear.

The paddle features a push-pin system and secondary clamp to lock in the main shaft to the blade section. The secondary clamp ensures there is no wobble or flex in the joint. The adjustable handle slides into the main shaft and is locked into place by a 2 pin clamp system. It offers adjustments about every inch from 70-86″ in overall paddle length. This pin clamp adjustment system is a little more bulky that the clamp you find on other higher level paddles but the pins on this system help to orient the paddle handle with the blade so there is never any twist. It makes adjusting the paddle on the fly, or on the beach, that much easier. It also allows you to pick a length and know exactly where to adjust the shaft to for optimum use each time. See the video on adjusting your SUP paddle.

On the water: The carbon and nylon paddle is almost the perfect shaft and blade combo. The carbon shaft is super light and includes a nice amount of flex. There is no noticeable play in either shaft joins and the dual pin adjustment clamp makes adjusting the overall length of the blade very easy. The blade also features a small strip of rubber along the edge which makes it very soft against the rail of the board and protects the blade from damage against other obstacles. The blade size is medium and comfortable which makes paddling a breeze and does not strain the shoulders.


  • 3 piece paddle
  • Usage: All round/River
  • Blade: Nylon
  • Shaft: Carbon
  • Adjustable range: 180 – 220 cm (70 – 86 inches)
  • Weight: 31.4 oz or 890 grams
  • Fits in Red Paddle Co travel bag


  • Lively flex and rebound (bending and returning to straight) for shoulder comfort, longer paddle sessions and improved power transfer
  • Durable nylon blade
  • Lighter weight shaft than alloy, much easier to stroke with and paddle long distances
  • Secure dual shaft locking system
  • Pin adjust handle which orients handle to blade
  • Comfortable and grippy handle


  • Adjustment clamp is a bit clunky but does make adjusting the shaft super easy

The carbon shaft and nylon blade 3 piece paddle by Red Paddle Co is an excellent paddle for those ready to option up to something nice and light yet super durable. Paying a little extra for a quality paddle is like buying a good quality pair of shoes. A paddle can make your break your paddle session enjoyment. Something heavy and clunky will make you hate life. This paddle blends the premium carbon shaft with a durable blade ready for abuse of all sorts. Absolutely worth the extra coin. This paddle currently comes as standard with our higher level Red Paddle Co boards. It is also available as an upgrade on the rest of the range.

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About the author: Julian Kidd
I have been an avid stand up paddle boarder since 2009. I retired from a decade of professional kiteboarding to focus on SUP. Green Water Sports grew from this love of all things SUP. As well as being a keen paddle boarder, I'm a football fan, closet petrol head, web tinkerer, husband and father.