So heres how i made my first walking staff. Now you would normally go and find a suitable stick and heat it up and bend it striaght. However you need to season the wood (let it dry out of all moisture and harden) and this takes a while, i'v read that the rule of them is a year for each inch of diametre. So i decided to go on over to http://www.thestickman.co.uk/ and bought some straight seasoned hazel and other bits and pieces needed. Keith over at stickman was more than helpful and extremely fast delivary.
So when all that arrived it was time to get started. What i ordered for mine was 1 54" hazel shank, 1 beaded brass collar and one angled antler piece and one alpine spike and 1/2 metre of leather thonging for a lanyard.
Started with tapering the ends of the stick to fit both the brass collar at the top and the alpine spike at the bottom.
Both ends are glued in place with our good friend Araldite Precision, however the alpine spike should be attached with a screw through the hole provided, but giving my lack of experience i opted just for the Araldite.
Next it was attaching the antler. It needs to be filed at the bottom in order to fit in. Then fill the collar with araldite and place the antleer in and use a small piece of electrical insulateing tape or something to hold the antler in place and leave to dry. Though make sure to not to put too much tape on that it will stick to the araldite. And for the lanyard what i did was cut the leather needed and drill a hole in the stick. Taper the ends of the leath to fit through the hole and use a pair of pliers to pull through nice and tight. Then cut off the excess and using a small piece of araldite lightly put some on just enough to wet the leather.
Next its time to finish it. Get yourself a piece of fine steel wool and some teak oil and put some teak oil on the steel wool and rub the stick down, leave for a couple of mins and then wipe off the excess. Remember to saturate ALL rags that have the oil on it in water as they are prone to combust. I would mayber use linseed oil next time to try it.
And there you have it a finished walking staff. I really enjoyed making this and can't wait to make a couple more when the wood seasons so ill do another post at that time showing how to bend the wood. This may not be the most prefessional one but it seems to do the job fine i'v took it out a few times and it has worked alot better than any shop bought walking stick i'v tried. Once again id like to give a special mention to Kieth at http://www.thestickman.co.uk/ who was extremely helpful.