Can I Get an Unfinished Wood Paddle?

Q: “Can I get an unfinished wood paddle?”

A: Yes!

We occasionally get asked by customers if they can special order an unfinished wooden paddle. This may be for a variety of reasons such as simply doing custom artwork, writing a personalized message as a keepsake item or gift. Some folks paint, decoupage, hand write or laser engrave. If the paddle is desired to be truly unfinished we can certainly do that. However, we find that many folks want to write on the paddle with something such as a Sharpie pen. In that case, it is best that we add two coats of varnish. This allows the pen ink to sit on the surface and not bleed into the wood. Then you can either have returned to us for two more varnish coats to protect the artwork or you can find someone on your own to do this.

The cost of an unfinished paddle is the same and all that is needed, at the time of order placement, is a note stating “unfinished” to us so that we build accordingly.

Some important things to consider are what type of artwork, if any, are you putting on the paddle and will the paddle be used in the water or simply stored indoors as a keepsake?

If you plan to varnish your unfinished paddle yourself we would refer you to our online post and video Caring for Your Wood Paddle to show you how to do this. If you have further questions, always feel free to give us a call.

Q: “Can I get a wood hockey stick?”

A: We’re sorry, not anymore!

For those new to the Bending Branches family of paddles, we once were well-known as a maker of superior hockey sticks, too. Their production helped keep us busy during the winter season when paddles were out of season.

Our hockey sticks debuted at a show in Montreal in 1987 with rousing success. They became an important part of Branches’ growth as a company in the 1990s, especially when the sticks became widely used in the NHL.

Branches Hockey Sticks

When wooden sticks were gradually replaced by aluminum and full-composite sticks in the early 2000s, we phased out our hockey line. Production officially ended in early 2003, and we again re-focused exclusively on the paddle sports.

(While we can’t sell you a hockey stick anymore, we see them occasionally on eBay!)

See this article on for a longer history.

Do you have more questions for us? Contact our friendly Wisconsin-based customer service team. We love talking to our customers!

Phone: 715-755-3405 (8-5 Monday-Friday, Central Time)
Email: [email protected]

More for you:

Frequently Asked Questions
More Frequently Asked Questions
How to Size a Canoe Paddle