The Viper Fusion (FSN) 9.65" is very similar to it's little siblings, the 9" FSN and the 9.5" FSN, but has a few differences that make it unique. Just like the other 2 blades you will have the same amazing light-weight hollow bamboo construction, the comfort of a thin shaft and ergonomic T top, but the shape and angle of the blade have been updated to be slightly more aggressive.
Viper increased the angle for the FSN 9.65" to be 10° instead of 9°. The more aggressive angle allows a little more forgiveness in stroke technique so that you can pull further back (or at the wrong angle) before you end up pulling the canoe down and interrupting the glide.
The other key difference is the shape of the blade - It is more round than square. The update to the shape gives you the same bite as the 9.5" Viper FSN, but the widest part of the blade is shifted slightly higher in the design to be closer to your hand, giving you more control against the water's resistance. The result? The same catch as the 9.5", but with more precision.
What hasn't changed?
Light Weight - 14 ounces! Though it's a hybrid it weighs the same amount as all carbon paddles and is just as strong. The shaft is a hollow piece of bamboo giving this blade a feather light feel.
Durability - The best paddlers use this blade for a reason. Besides the feel and weight, this blade is strong. It has a protective layer around the edge of the blade protecting it from damage and guaranteeing a perfect water entry.
Comfort - The construction of the bamboo shaft is nice and thin, making this blade more comfortable than most. The T top was also artfully crafted to be ergonomic. It has a nice wide, curved shape that keeps your hand open and loose - so no matter how many miles you plan on doing, your forearms won't cramp up.
***A Note on Blend: If you are looking for an OC-6 blade then it is worth knowing what the rest of your crew is paddling with. If everyone has a 9° bend and you have a 10° bend then you will be pulling at a 1° different direction throughout the entire stroke. Not the worst thing in the world (and probably un-noticeable), but something to consider.
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