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HOME arrow GEAR INSIGHTS arrow A Review of the 2009 Methane Stand Up Paddle by Kialoa
A Review of the 2009 Methane Stand Up Paddle by Kialoa PDF Print E-mail
By: Stand Up Paddle Surfing Magazine   
Thursday, 20 November 2008
kialoa_methane_logo.jpg    New for 2009, Kialoa has introduced the Methane to their extensive line of stand up paddles. Founded by master paddle builder, Dave Chun, Kialoa has been at the forefront innovation using modern technology to produce high performance paddles for both outrigger and stand up paddling. Inspired by stand up paddle surfboard shaper Blane Chambers of Paddle Surf Hawaii, the Methane features minimal surface area and a narrow blade design for quick acceleration and maneuverability in the surf.
kialoa_methane.jpg     The Methane weighs in at a mere 21 ounces. 100% carbon fiber construction gives this lightweight paddle its extremely high strength to weight ratio. When most people pick up this paddle for the first time, they are amazed at how light it feels. We’ve heard more than one person comment that it feels like a toothpick the first time they pick it up. Featherweight construction allows for quicker cadence, or stroke speed, and quicker paddle placement at critical sections of the surf. If you need to whip the paddle behind you or to the opposite side of your board, you’ll be able to put it there in the blink of an eye.

     Kialoa’s unidirectional Ergo-T design is what you’ll find at the top of the Methane. It’s basically a T-grip with a rounded contour on the back side of to help it fit more comfortably in your palm. The Ergo-T gives you the blade control of a traditional T-Grip with just enough contour to eliminate hot spots in the palm of your hand.

     All of Kialoa’s carbon fiber paddles use the same shaft that you’ll find on the Methane. It is oval indexed, shape, combined with the Ergo-T grip, will allow you to get the blade pointed in the right direction without taking the time to look at the blade with your eyes. Compared to other paddles on the market, the diameter of the shaft is smaller. A slimmer shaft doesn’t mean a weaker paddle. Kialoa team riders Mel Pu’u and Chuck Patterson are two of the most powerful paddlers on the water and they’re using the same shaft. Chucky P. actually powered his way to a victory facing strong winds in the Gerry Lopez Battle of the Paddle using a paddle with a stock Kialoa shaft.

     The blade covers 97 square inches of surface area. It’s 8 inches wide, 16.5 inches wide and is set at a 10 degree angle. The narrow blade and less surface area is excellent for the surf where quick acceleration is necessary, especially when getting the speed up to drop into the wave. The smaller blade reduces the chance of getting overpowered by the blade and pulling yourself off balance as you begin your initial strokes to get maximum speed before catching a wave.

     Its narrow design also may help with straighter paddling. Eight inches across mean only 4 inches from the center point of the blade. This allows you to keep the blade closer to your board as you paddle, thus resulting in more forward propulsion and less side swinging in your stroke.

     There is no dihedral or elevated spine on the power side of the Methane. The blade is totally flat. Some prefer this because they feel it puts more power and sensitivity in their stroke while others feel that the flat blade flutters, or moves around too much, in the water. It’s a matter of personal preference. You’ll find top stand up paddlers that insist on the necessity of a dihedral blade and you’ll find others who prefer a flat paddle blade. For more discussion about the pros and cons of a dihedral we recommend reading our article entitled, Stand Up Paddles: Do I Need a Dihedral Blade? which can be found here .

     In conclusion, the Methane was built for the surf but is still retains enough surface area to handle a strong stroke and not feel as if the blade is lacking. Lightweight construction and extensive product testing have made this paddle the choice of many top stand up paddlers on the water today. For more about the Methane, we also recommend listening to our radio interview with Kialoa’s founder and paddle designer, Dave Chun, which can be found here or on iTunes.

     You’ll find all the specs and order information at www.Kialoa.com .
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