Kia Kaha Paddles vs Kialoa Axel II

Has anyone tried or currently using a Kia Kaha Paddle?

Any feedback? How does it compare to Kialoa AxelI,

I have been using a Kialoa Axel II hybrid blade and I do not like the feel of the Axel compared to my all wood 98' Kialoa Wiley Coyote.

I am in the market foir a new blade, and since it is nearly impossible to order a Makana Ali'i , one of my team mates reccomended trying a Kia Kaha..

Any feedback or opinions would be helpful.

I would prefer to order a Makana Ali'i since I have tried one & i love it , i just have not had much luck getting an order placed.

Thanks in advance for replies.


Submitted by ChadRex on Sun, 04/10/2011 - 6:05am

lots of paddle manufacturers.. quickblades, xylos, and got mudbrooks in your area, talk to al.

honestly.. been a lot of threads on here with different paddles but all of them end this way.. to each their own, you gotta try them yourself. I think xylos are underated, he makes some light snappy blades.

Kia's are just another carbon fiber/wood hybrid. Different face then kialoas, but same composites. Felt pretty similar when I used one for a bit.

#1 Sun, 04/10/2011 - 6:30am

Yeah ditto with isotopez.
To each his own. You'll have to experiment. Be flexible, you may find your form changing enough that a paddle you liked the best may not be your preferred blade by the end of a season. There is also crew blending to consider as well. Height, hand size, arm length are some basic considerations. I find I have a changing paddle length preference depending on where I am sitting in the canoe as well (e.g., stroking = slightly shorter vs seat 4) but that may be just me. Currently I am carrying a couple Kia Kaha's, and a Xylo in my active quiver. All of them are slightly different in length.

#2 Sun, 04/10/2011 - 7:58am

Good paddle but put tape around the edge....seems to chip a lot.

#3 Sun, 04/10/2011 - 8:12am

@ isotopez thnks for the reply, yeah I talked with Al he is pushing the Mudbrooks for obvious reasons, he is gonna bring me one down to demo,

@King of Kailua.. thnks for the reply How do you like your Kia Kaha? do they chip easy? do feel solid?

@ Poidog thnks for the reply do you paddle with Kia Kaha? are they fragile blades? is that tape around the edges? I want a paddle with solid feel that is fairly sturdy

#4 Sun, 04/10/2011 - 8:49am

I really liked the paddle...light and durable. Slipped in and grabed water really cleanly. My only complaint was that the edges of the blade could have been beefed up more. The chipping is not just the painted surface but into the carbon. The other guys that I know that have used them complained about the same thing. I got mine a few years ago so maybe things have changed. I have not had similar problems with QB or Kialoa Lanikai. All hybrids but with a strong reinforced edge..

#5 Sun, 04/10/2011 - 11:07am

I've had a Kia kaha for over a year. Really comfortable the first day I used it. Has a real clean entry and grabs water well. Use it about 3 x a week, no chips or any problems. Feels good in the flats or on Maliko runs.

#6 Mon, 04/11/2011 - 11:36am

Has anyone tried the Viper BMB ?

@sparsurf thanks for the feedback. So would you reccomend a Kia Kaha over a Kialoa?

Or should I hold out until I can find a way to order a Makana Ali'i

#7 Mon, 04/11/2011 - 2:47pm

You get callouse on top yo hands?

#8 Mon, 04/11/2011 - 3:45pm

I'll sell you a golden paddle with fairy dust sprinkled from the fingertips of 15 virgin princesses

#9 Mon, 04/11/2011 - 7:01pm all honesty, if you don't live on Oahu, your chances of getting a brand new Makana are slim to none. Kia Kahas are great, I've had a couple in the past. Maui has been finishing his paddle edges alot better so the chipping issues are a moot point. You'll probably still have to wait awhile for one. You should also check out Broad Reach paddles. Custom top shelf craftmanship, and Scotty will ship to you. So will Odie at Pure Paddles.'ll still have to wait. Kialoas are good too, with no wait. So question is, how long are you willing to wait?

#10 Mon, 04/11/2011 - 9:34pm

I've had a Kia Kaha for three years and it has held up well and it will likely be replaced by another Kia Kaha. So far the few nicks on the edges haven't amounted to much.

I lent it to a friend to try out and he said he like its "quiet entry." Not sure what that means.

#11 Tue, 04/12/2011 - 5:46am

@ScarySlow thnks for the reply,

I picked up a Mana Blade tonight it seems similar to a Makana Alií , So It will hold me over until I get the Kia Kaha, or am able to place an order for a Makana Alií

Anyone here ever use a Mana Blade?

#12 Sat, 04/16/2011 - 8:25pm

if it looks like a paddle, acts like a paddle.. chances are...

#13 Tue, 04/12/2011 - 6:44pm

Makana Alii.

#14 Tue, 04/12/2011 - 7:31pm

best paddle evah!

#15 Wed, 04/13/2011 - 5:13am

Well after using my Mana Blade Wednesdays
I am really pleased with it. It does have a quiet entry, and it is a good balanced blade with nice feel. Carbon Fiber on the power face with a balsa & fiber on the front. Im’ glad I got the MANA blade……especially since they are not making them anymore!

#16 Sat, 04/16/2011 - 8:57pm

The comments about the Kia Kaha chipping are pretty legit, but any paddle handled without care can be damaged. And that includes wood AND carbon blades. I've got edge repairs on mine after 1.5 seasons. That said, I still really like the paddle. I'd add the tape to a Kia Kaha because the edge is pretty thin compared to a wood blade. I hate to see canoes with chatter marks on their hulls because of carbon blades.

#17 Sun, 04/17/2011 - 5:34pm

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