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email for gaco oarlocks
Steve Kaphaem, Blind Faith Boats, Interlochen, Michigan:
In a letter to the Editor Wooden Boat Magazine, In my efforts to keep my line of rowing boats as light as possible, I have discovered the gated oarlocks manufactured by GACO. Though they couldn’t be described as traditional in appearance, I have found them to be light, strong, and moderately priced. In addition they make no noise whatsoever. I am not affiliated with GACO.

John Black, Newport, Sydney, Australia:
Your rowlocks have been excellent and a pleasure to row with, very quiet and smooth. They have also stood up well over the seven years we have been using them and look almost new

David Bridges, Rhode Island, USA:
I have a set of your oarlocks already and love them. They do what you said they do and they have remained wobble and squeak free for a couple of years and probably 800 miles. Thank you.

Garry McPhail, Penetanguishine, ON, Canada:
I have to say that the Gaco oarlock assembly is not only unique, but a delight to use. I have in the past used various systems but none have been so trouble free or kind to the oars as Gaco.

J.P.S., Old Lyme, CT, USA:
The locks are unquestionably of thoughtful design. But the opening procedure -- using a screwdriver and pressing quite firmly against the locking tab -- invites wear and distortion of the locking tab if the locks are installed and removed very often. Installation on the oars is thus is a bit of a one-way street if one is to avoid chewing up the tab and risking later disconnections. Perhaps a stiff, plastic, unlocking tool could be included with the locks. BOTTOM LINE Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.

Gaco's response:
The installation of the oarlocks is meant to be semi permanent. If the instructions are followed opening is not a problem. It is not anticipated that the oarlocks will routinely be removed once attached. However they can be removed and reattached more than once.

Cobber, Far South Tasmania, Australia:
I have been using the Gaco oarlocks on my 12 foot Cadet class dinghy since 2003. I used the half inch adapter sleeves on the pins and they have worked perfectly. The previous owner of my dinghy had tried unsuccessfully to prevent damage to the leather oar sleeves by taping leather fingers cut from old gloves onto the old metal horn type oarlock. Since fitting the Gacos I have noticed that the wear on the oars has ceased and the oarlocks have shown negligible wear themselves. It is pleasing to use these silent oarlocks in the quiet of the Hastings bay where I live. BOTTOM LINE Yes, I would recommend this to a friend.

Jim from Utica, NY:
I'm using these oarlocks on a homebuilt 14 foot skiff, on protected flat water (Erie Canal) with homebuilt oars. The oars have an elliptical cross section which the Gaco locks handle with no problem. The only hang-up is that the inboard loom of the oars is square, and sometimes the transition zone from square to elliptical kind of jams in the lock as I release and feather, but that is purely a local problem, and I'm working on developing buttons to deal with that.Apart from that, though, these oarlocks are very nice indeed. There is absolutely no tendency to rise out of the socket, and they are dead quiet (useful for fishing). Further, they provide a very smooth action throughout the stroke. Also, they happily accommodate my non-standard, elliptical shafts throughout a feathered stroke, and the polypropylene bearing surface is very easy on the finish on the oars. I would certainly get them again - indeed, I will use them on the next boat I build, without question. I heartily recommend them.

"He who rows", Greenwich Cove, CT:
Great feel - I use these on a 13ft whaler with sculling oars from an old Alden rowing shell and sitting in the bow position - 250 strokes to and from our moored sailboat with no sound and no resistance from these slick oarlocks - better than using the 25 hp outboard which remains tilted up on the transom - they also handle the D shape shaft of these older sculls - bought a second pair for our Dyer Dink which I expect will be just as satisfying.

If you ever have a problem contact Gaco and a new set will be delivered free.