Effect of Muffled Oars

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This is a follow-up question to Paul Revere's crossing the Charles River.

What kind of degradation of performance would you expect the oars are covered in cloth ? I suspect a substantial drag would result and all hydrodynamics of the oar be compromised.

This was done to muffle any sound made since they were to pass very close to the Royal Navy warship, The Somerset. I thought that proper oaring (allegedly by accomplised watermen) would be virtually noiseless since the oar "slices" into the water. Any thoughts?

Thanks, John

-- John C. Mannone (jcmannone@earthlink.net), November 30, 2002


I thought that so called "muffling" of oars occurred at the oarlocks (that's where the noise is on my boat) not at the blades.

-- Kim Apel (kapel@fullerton.edu), December 03, 2002.

Hi Kim,

Your absolutely right. Doug brought this to my attention also. Not only does it make sense, but the reference "muffled oar" is a figure of speech interpreted just as you both suspect.

Thanks for responding, John

-- John C. Mannone (jcmannone@earthlink.net), December 03, 2002.

Has anyone tried to "muffle" Dreher sleeves by covering them with leather or other materials?

-- Robert Dunshee (rdunshee1@attbi.com), May 06, 2004.

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