New for 2023 from Aqua Bound is the Versa-Lok range of kayak paddles with the adjustable ferrule system, which promotes versatility and adjustability. Whether you are a recreational flatwater paddler, an experienced touring kayaker or an enthusiastic packrafter, the durable and easy-to-use ferrule will cater for many disciplines and paddling styles. The Versa-Lok range includes the Mantaray Hybrid, Mantaray Carbon, Stingray Hybrid and Stingray Carbon.
In terms of usability the design features a simple to use clamp with a locking lever to secure both ends of the paddle, this clamp is a very solid design that has a secure, tight connection with no movement or slip at all when in the locked position. To compare with the Posi-Lok paddles, the Versa-Lok models are slightly heavier in hand, but the difference wouldn’t be noticeable when on the water and are of such high build quality that you soon forget that the Versa-Lok paddles are 2-piece!
The Versa-Lok ferrule can add up to 15cm to the overall length of your paddle and is perfect for many situations that can arise in paddlesport if:
- You are unsure which length of paddle to use.
- You own boats of varied widths or use club boats of several types.
- Potentially other paddlers will be using your paddle and each person is of varying height.
- Your kayak has an adjustable seat.
- Paddlers who employ different paddling techniques in different conditions.
If you are out paddling in windy conditions the Aqua Bound Versa-Lok ferrule paddles can be feathered to reduce the amount of wind resistance the blade that is in the air on each stroke is subjected to. The Versa-Lok ferrule has unlimited feather angles—360º of angles to try out, this allows the individual paddler to experiment and find the exact angle and length that suits them and their paddling style.
The Versa-Lok system is manufactured using plastic, nylon, and stainless steel, so if you are a paddler who is often out on the sea, do not worry! The Versa-Lok ferrule is highly resistant to corrosion and is essentially maintenance free apart from washing occasional pieces of debris out. The design is simple yet straightforward to use, so much so you can adjust the paddle whilst out on the water, even during mid-stroke!
The only very slight negative with the Versa-Lok system is that these paddles only have markings for 5cm increments at a time: 5cm – 10cm – 15cm. If you are a paddler who is looking to get an exact length you may find these paddles somewhat hard to set up straight away, however, some fine tuning is all that is required to find the optimum length for yourself.
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