Category Archives: Assault Hand Paddle

Assault Hand Paddle Review By Tony Hart, Professional Kayak Angler

Tony Hart, Backwater Paddle Company professional rep, took the time to evaluate and provide a product review for the new Assault Hand Paddle.  Below is his take on how the new hand paddle works for him.

Product Review: Assault Hand Paddle

 “The Assault Hand Paddle from Backwater Paddle Company is an innovative tool that is perfect for kayak anglers.  It doesn’t matter if you’re trekking down a narrow creek in the deep reaches of the Florida wilderness or need a little help maneuvering your kayak while fighting a trophy fish, the Assault Hand Paddle will get the job done.  It’s the brainchild of former US Navy survival instructor, Ed Halm, who envisioned the idea one day while paddling a local river in Central Florida.  Ultimately, when Ed asked if I would take a look over and test the paddle out, I jumped at the opportunity.  Here’s my take on the Assault Hand Paddle from Backwater Paddle Company.

Initially, the paddle has a very unique look to it.  A “hook” on one side, and a toothed edge on the other side provide the angler with the ability to grab and/or pull away debris that is in the way.  It’s fairly light, and has the ability to float which is always a positive in the kayaking world.  For my testing purposes in the saltwater creeks of NE Florida, I was impressed with its overall ability.  I was able to use the toothed side to help with pushing off of and away from dock pilings and oyster beds.  The hook end was valuable in that it was able to assist in unhooking a jighead that was hung up in an oyster bed.   The hand paddle proved its worthiness in that it was much more easier to handle rather than my 240cm Accent Paddle.  Having the ability to be able to hold your rod with one hand and easily right yourself with a smaller tool earned the Assault Hand Paddle a thumb’s up.

Assault Hand Paddle

The other cool part of this paddle is the ability to help right yourself when fighting a fish.  We who fish for redfish know that they are a fierce-some fighting fish, with the ability to make several nice runs in several different directions.  When staked out, this can be somewhat cumbersome, especially when trying to keep tension on the fishing rod and maneuver your regular kayak paddle.  I’m sure there’s many of you who will agree with me that this can be a daunting task to say the least.  With the Assault Hand Paddle, this aggravation is a thing of the past.  Having something that is quickly deployed and easy to use to get your next trophy fish landed is of the utmost importance to a kayak angler, and the Assault Hand Paddle fits that billing.

Overall, I was very impressed with the product from Backwater Paddle Company, and will definitely recommend using the Assault Hand Paddle to the kayak fishing community.”

Assault Hand Paddle Floating

Thanks Tony for your time and consideration!  Paddle on my friend!!

The Assault Hand Paddle Revolution is ON!!

Assault Hand Paddle Touring the World

Assault Hand Paddle Floating

Since the Assault Hand Paddle debut earlier this year, our unique hand paddles have been purchased all around the globe by the international kayak angling community.   Australia has been hot on the hand paddles since their inception.   As Australia considers itself one of the extreme locations around the world,  these awesome looking paddles have captured their attention.

Backwater Paddle Company is setting up a distributor in Australia.   Colin Linton, a Backwater Paddle Company loyalist, has been working with us for years in promoting our paddles to the folks Down Under.    Colin has stepped up to lead the Assault Hand Paddle revolution to his Australian and New Zealand kayak fishing community.

BCF (Boating, Camping and Fishing) is like the stateside Bass Pro Shops, Gander Mountain or Academy Sports shops for the Australian sportsmen.  Colin is working on introducing the Assault Hand Paddle into the larger sporting goods brick and mortar stores around their country.

Carlos Cianchini, a fellow kayak angler from Micronesia, recently purchased a set of Assault Hand Paddles and is posting his hand paddle adventures.  Where in the hell is Micronesia, you ask?  Is there a Macronesia?  All I know that these islands are somewhere north of Australia.

Of course our neighbors up north, Canada, have been all over the Assault Hand Paddle.   You would think having a mutually shared border would make shipping easy and cheap.   It seems to take forever for our paddle sportsmen in the Great White North to receive their paddle orders?  I can get the paddles to the border in two days…after that it,  takes about two weeks for the Canadian post service to get them the rest of the way.  Wonder why?

Brazil, UK, Spain and Italy are a few more countries where the Assault Hand Paddle revolution is taking hold.   Spread the word!!

The Assault Hand Paddle revolution is ON!!

Assault Hand Paddle FAQ’s

 

Assault Hand Paddle providing stealth and mobility!

Assault Hand Paddle providing stealth and mobility!

What are the paddles made from?

The new Assault Hand Paddles are made from a 10% fiberglass infused polypropylene plastic for strength and durability, with a UV additive for longevity.  The handle is covered with a foam hand grip for comfort and lanyard attached for security.

How big are they?

The paddles measure out to 22” long by 6” wide and weigh only 12 ounces.  We kept them under 24” so they would still be compact, yet lethal.

Do they float?

Absolutely!  They HAVE to float!

Assault Hand Paddle Floating

How did you come up with the blade design?

Out paddling one day in Central Florida, I came across a strainer blocking the local river.  I tried to dislodge the structure, but came up short handed with only a kayak paddle.  As a US Navy Survival Instructor, failure was not an option.  I envisioned how a hook would have grabbed onto the debris and a toothed end to push it down stream.  After a few mangled prototypes; today we have the patented “hook and teeth” blade design, now seen on the Assault Hand Paddle.

Are they modeled after a medieval weapon?

Not actually medieval…more from a WWII Air Force Jungle Survival weapon, now commonly known as a Woodsman’s Tool.

How tough are they?

Short of using rotary or reciprocating tools in your effort, you will not break this paddle.  If you do…we will replace the paddle.  (You better have a badass story, too!) 

Assault Hand Paddle vs, Piling!

Backwater Paddle Company’s newest paddle, the Assault Hand Paddle, is ready for everything!

Can we order other colors?

As these paddles are plastic, we can manufacture them in any color, even proprietary colors.  Currently we are working away through “camo” colors, i.e. green, brown and blue, as well as safety colors (red and yellow.)  However there is a manufacturing minimum amount.  Contact Ed at Backwater Paddle Company for more information.

Where do we buy them?

Currently from the Backwater Paddle Company’s web store.  Hopefully that will change in the next few months and they will be available in the big box retail sporting goods stores.

Other than fishing, who else can use them?

Duck hunters use the Assault Hand Paddle to stealthily maneuver their kayak for the best shot presentation and game retrieval.

Paddle sport photographers use the hand paddles to position their boats for maximum subject exposure and background framing.

Paddle sport adventurers use the hand paddles for close quarter maneuvering in tight spaces in lieu of their seven foot kayak paddle.

Will there be other paddles with that blade design?

Yes, we are putting together manufacturing projects for kayak, canoe and SUP paddles.  It may be a year or so away.  The new paddle lines will all incorporate the patented “hook and teeth” design as well some type of raised graphics package.

Assault Hand Paddle Revolution Is On!

Backwater Paddle Company reached a major milestone in its corporate development. The Assault Hand Paddle has arrived!  After nearly a year of waiting and endless manufacturing delays, it is an exciting moment in the evolution of paddle sports.

The Assault Hand Paddle is revolutionizing paddle sportsmen’s stealth and mobility.   The only paddle designed for paddle sportsmen seeking stealth and close quarter mobility.  The plastic paddles distinctive visual appeal and raised graphic design sets it apart from all other paddles in the paddle sports market.

Assault Hand Paddle Floating

The paddle matters!  Some say the Assault Hand Paddle’s unique and versatile blade design is a cross between medieval weapon and sports racquet.  Whatever your observation regarding this state-of-the-art paddle, it is 100% efficient.  The unparalleled blade design evolved out of physical necessity.   Paddle sportsmen needed a smaller and more functional paddle while battling tight spaces and repositioning their kayak or canoe.

The Assault Hand Paddles patented “hook and teeth” blade design provides the ultimate tool for kayak anglers, hunters and photographers.  The lightweight and compact hand paddle provides a one-handed option to position their boat for maximum maneuverability and productivity.  The single-handed paddling option allows the paddle sportsman to continue to fight fish, hunt ducks or shoot photos while staying on target.

Backwater Paddle Company’s patented “hook” blade design permits grabbing, snagging or snatching objects to retrieve or position your craft.  The paddles “teeth” provide positive purchase while pushing or shoving off objects.

The genesis of the Assault Hand Paddle came from its former wooden siblings, the Predator and Piranha Kayak Fishing Hand Paddles.  These earlier generation wood paddles were proof of concept that seven foot paddles were not the answer for every paddle sportsman.  With the rapid growth of paddle sports, it became evident paddle sportsmen needed a smaller, more compact and practical paddle in their daily endeavors.

To enhance product and market availability, the plastic Assault Hand Paddle was designed incorporating the innovative features of Backwater Paddle Company’s prior wood hand paddles.   Not only did we want a completely functional plastic paddle, but a paddle that created the “wow” factor.   With plastic, we had an opportunity to make an awesome visual statement, as well as product longevity.

New Assault Hand Paddle by Backwater Paddle Company

New Hand Paddle Design

The Assault Hand Paddle will retail for $29.95.  We expect to have them in outdoor retail and big box stores later this year.  As of now, they can be purchased from Backwater Paddle Company’s web store.

Backwater Paddle Company’s future includes a kayak paddle, canoe paddle and SUP paddle. They will all incorporate the patented “hook and teeth” blade design, as well as the awesome raised graphics package.

Backwater Paddle Company is looking for paddle sport pro staffers, representatives, wholesalers and distributors willing to use, introduce and disseminate our products into the paddle sports market.  Contact Ed at Backwater Paddle Company for further information.   You can visit our website or place an order at www.backwaterpaddles.com.   The Paddle Matters!

Paddle on friends!

Backwater Paddle Company Has New Assault Hand Paddle Mold Ready

Finally, after eleven months of tooling, Backwater Paddle Company’s newest paddle, the Assault Hand Paddle, is ready for manufacturing.  The final mold inspection was recently performed.  A couple of dozen sample paddles were made.   The mold tooling project was signed off and paid in full.

We are just waiting on some small particulars from the manufacturing end.  We expect to have paddles available in a couple of weeks.

Assault Hand Paddle Biting

The Assault Hand Paddle project was beset with problems from the beginning.  Backwater Paddle originally entertained the idea of manufacturing the paddles overseas.   The overseas contact we had abandoned the project in mid stream, leaving us stranded.  We spun our wheels for four months with nothing to show for it.   NO, there was no money invested or lost with the overseas exploration.   After very little thought, we decided the overseas venture was not the way to go.  Stay at home!!

Having explored the stateside tooling and plastic manufacturers, we opted for a company in Valdosta, Georgia.  Peliton Plastics took on the project.  However, they were extremely busy and subbed our project out to one of their affiliates up in Kentucky, for the same quoted price.

The project was more than the Kentucky company could handle.  They had to upgrade their CAD system, their memory, their tools, etc, etc.   All this created delays, massive, mind blowing delays!

To make a long story short, we finally got our mold after eleven months.  Did I tell you that the mold was supposed to take only four months to make?  With so many problems, delays…all we could do was laugh about our predicament.  All we could really do was…hurry up, and wait!!

Assault Hand Paddle Float Test

Backwater Paddle Company’s Assault Hand Paddle performing the first float test. The paddle floats extremely well!

Another main concern was flotation of the plastic Assault Hand Paddles.  We were not sure if the paddles would float on their own.  The manufacturers felt “pretty sure,” but not certain.  As soon as we got our first sample…it floated perfectly!!

Assault Hand Paddle Mold on Injection Machine

Assault Hand Paddle mold with water cooling lines connected. Waiting for pressure injection machine to close and shoot mold with polypropylene plastic.

You cannot believe how complicated the mold tooling and pressure injection systems are.   The molds are not some simple, two sided, diametrically opposed plates, clamped together and plastic poured in a hole!  Unclamp and viola, a paddle!!  Not even my friends!!

The Assault Hand Paddle mold weighs about 500 pounds, a quarter ton of steel!  It has two steel milled plates with the paddle design.  Two massive steel plates that hold all the mechanical parts and ejection pins, are all bolted together.  A forklift moves the mold from shop to machine.

Even a water cooling system is piped into the mold.  The above photo shows the water lines connected into the side of the mold.  Some 250 tons of pressure is generated to hold the mold closed while 400 degree polypropylene plastic is forced in.  Pretty impressive operation when you see it all working.

Assault Hand Paddle in sepia.

Found photo of original Assault Hand Paddle used by early explorers to paddle the waterways and defend against the natives.

We have so many potential customers commenting on the uniqueness of the paddle design.  Many say it looks like a primitive or medieval weapon!  I like that, as a former naval survival instructor!  Maybe that is where the concept lies?  Maybe some early explorers used an axe like device to bushwhack and double as a defensive weapon?

We searched old archived photos and found a file photo of just such a weapon.  Hmmmm….makes you think?

Assault Hand Paddle photo on rock

Backwater Paddle Company’s newest paddle, the Assault Hand Paddle, on display.

Nevertheless, Backwater Paddle Company hopes to get our new Assault Hand Paddle out to the paddle sports community soon.

As usual…still waiting!!  Paddle on my friends!!