Choosing the Correct Oar

Oar Length


Choosing the correct oar for your vessel can be more difficult than it initially seems. The Shaw and Tenney oar length formula is most often used and can be found here.

Please note the above formula is calculated in inches and should be used as a rule of thumb and can be impacted by other factors such as freeboard height, paddler height/weight, amount of overlap desired, etc.

Chesapeake Light Craft's range also includes both plans and manual as well as templates/patterns packages for constructing your own oars, see our CLC Oar page for further details.


Oar Style

It is important to select the right oar size and style for your sepcific vessel and rowing style as it will have a significant impact on your rowing experience.
Once you have calculated your approximate oar length using the above formula to provide you with the 7:18 leverage ratio, you will then need to decide on your preffered blade style.
The two basic blade configurations are flat and spoon blades with variatons of each. While ultimatley being up to the rower, the optimal oar blade type is influenced by multiple factors such as hull design and oar length. See Shaw and Tenny's break down of the various oar styles here for further information.
Flat Blade        Spoon Blade
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