Like all their Performance Core paddles, the Werner Ikelos is comprised of outer layers of carbon molded over an interior core of lightweight, rigid foam, creating a paddle with less swing weight and more stiffness than conventional solid construction.
The Ikelos' knifelike edge and light weight offers a clean entry and hookup when grabbing that first handful of water, and a smooth stability throughout the stroke, with no tendency to flutter when under a strong pull. With its big barndoor blades, the Ikelos feels solid even when bracing in rough water. Despite its large surface area and solid plant, the Ikelos does not place undue strain on the shoulders or arms when driven with good paddling form and torso rotation, even on touring days of many miles with a loaded boat. And, with their buoyant foam-cores and broad surface area, the blades practically set themselves up for a roll.
I've paddled the Ikelos for two full seasons now, in a variety of conditions. My only minor complaint involves Werner's Adjustable Ferrule System. It's a slick feature, but both of my Werner paddles which utilize this fine-tolerance mechanism have experienced intermittent problems with jamming in the open position, allowing the paddle to slip apart and refusing to remain together. Despite avid care to keep the ferrule free of dirt, sand, and the lubricants which attract them, this has happened to me and a couple of friends, the only cure being to blast the recessed device with a garden hose and pry it loose with a long screwdriver. If this minor problem persists, I'll consider calling or sending the paddle in for Werner's highly-respected customer service.
Hits: light weight, quality construction, smooth hydrodynamics, solid on-the-water feel
Misses: intermittent jamming of adjustable ferrule system
For a more comprehensive version of this product review, please visit: