Wooden Trekking Pole

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Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,002
885
Lancashire
I've been thinking about sticks for walking with. The simplest is something picked up on the trail up to the £100+++ carbon fibre, UL trekking pole. Has anyone tried to make a folding, wooden stick before?

I started this thread because the thread on what was or oil to use on a newly made stick made me remember my thought.

My reasoning is that I like wood and I like the folding modern stick because I don't always use the stick. In my walking I find there's times you need the stick(s) and times you don't. Indeed I've learnt the hard way they're an encumbrance that's potentially dangerous on some types of terrain (I once got two poles stuck in a rocky crevice and they catapulted me in a summersault with pike and twist until I landed rather uncomfortably but in a stylish manner on my feet). I'd like the ability to use a stout stick but able to fold it up to carry it, perhaps even small enough to stash in my sack.

Has anyone tried making such a stick? Has anyone thought about it before? I am a little weird in my ideas so it's possible it's only me with this thought. If not any ideas how to create the joins or folds? Modern sticks slide into each section or folds with a flexible joint. The latter might be an idea somehow. Or simply make it come apart and join with male and female end that lock into each other with a peg perhaps. Or is that too complex and prone to fail?
 

Van-Wild

Full Member
Feb 17, 2018
775
605
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UK
Off the top of my head..... initial thoughts are that 'stout' and 'folding' with regard to wood for a walking stick isnt gonna work however......

Also off the top of my head, one pole, cut into a 3/4 length and a 1/4 length (shorter fatter section at the top), held together with a section of PVC pipe could give you a stout, collapsible wooden walking pole?

Sent from my SM-G970F using Tapatalk
 

bobnewboy

Native
Jul 2, 2014
1,030
482
North West Somerset
Hmmm, wooden pole with qualities: light; strong; foldable/demountable. I think in this case its a case of perm any two from the three requirements. In this light modern materials are very hard to beat. I suppose that a wooden stick could be made in two halves, with a threaded piece of studding in the upper part, and a threaded pipe in the lower part. But it would get heavy if it was to be strong and reliable. It is also possible to use two tightly concentric pieces of tube to join the parts, usually a brass sleeve fitting into a steel sleeve, but that is difficult to engineer well when avoiding a sloppy fit.

My lightweight strong walking pole, which I use when beating, is made from a single piece of bamboo. It is reinforced at the floor end with an insert of hardwood, and then capped with a steel cap. It has been very reliable and handy in several tricky ascent/descent/fence hopping situations, but it remains the same length....
 

Van-Wild

Full Member
Feb 17, 2018
775
605
41
UK
Hmmm, wooden pole with qualities: light; strong; foldable/demountable. I think in this case its a case of perm any two from the three requirements. In this light modern materials are very hard to beat. I suppose that a wooden stick could be made in two halves, with a threaded piece of studding in the upper part, and a threaded pipe in the lower part. But it would get heavy if it was to be strong and reliable. It is also possible to use two tightly concentric pieces of tube to join the parts, usually a brass sleeve fitting into a steel sleeve, but that is difficult to engineer well when avoiding a sloppy fit.

My lightweight strong walking pole, which I use when beating, is made from a single piece of bamboo. It is reinforced at the floor end with an insert of hardwood, and then capped with a steel cap. It has been very reliable and handy in several tricky ascent/descent/fence hopping situations, but it remains the same length....
Ahh... bamboo! Of course, very clever. I'll be stealing that idea once COVID19 has buggered off! Cheers!

Sent from my SM-G970F using Tapatalk
 

Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,002
885
Lancashire
If did sound a difficult idea to make work but would be an interesting product if anyone managed it.
 

Broch

Full Member
Jan 18, 2009
4,647
3,900
Mid Wales
If you look at how a good quality break-down snooker cue is joined it may work. I suspect the length of thread on a cue is too short and it would need to be quite a bit longer to be strong enough; but I may be wrong. You can sometimes find some on car boot fairs that you could experiment with :) After all, if you can make a break-down bow it should be possible to make a break-down walking stick.

2020-04-01 22.20.46 - 2056 - 25.jpg
 

bobnewboy

Native
Jul 2, 2014
1,030
482
North West Somerset
If you look at how a good quality break-down snooker cue is joined it may work. I suspect the length of thread on a cue is too short and it would need to be quite a bit longer to be strong enough; but I may be wrong. You can sometimes find some on car boot fairs that you could experiment with :) After all, if you can make a break-down bow it should be possible to make a break-down walking stick.

View attachment 57989
Yep, that would work but remember that a cue isn’t really designed for any kind of side thrust/force. They are however often made of ash and a hardwood, so as you say it might be well worth a go in shortening a secondhand one.
 

Onelifeoverland

Full Member
Mar 3, 2020
307
149
Caerphilly, South Wales, UK
What about joining the two sections using a shaft and pin.

Think of a shepherds crook. Any good stick maker will tell you the best type is a whole piece without any joints where the crook part has been bent into shape using steam or heat. That good stick maker will then tell you the next best thing is a join where one stick slots into the other and is pinned straight through to hold them in place.

Btw: I dont profess to be a good stick maker, indeed it's my post that promoted yours. I just so happen to have had this very same conversation with Keith, The Stick Man last week. Not many will argue that what he doesn't know about stick making doesn't need knowing about.

Hope that's useful.

Here is a screen shot of part of our email chain.
56d3cc7b8a4d923b76d4a637cd660344.jpg


OLO
www.onelifeoverland.com
 

Broch

Full Member
Jan 18, 2009
4,647
3,900
Mid Wales
Yeh, I wasn't really suggesting it would be a total solution but something to try and then develop the idea from.
 

Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,002
885
Lancashire
I was more thinking of one end of the bottom section has a plug that goes into a socket on the top section. Like in that top picture in the stickman conversation screenshot. Can be long and possibly a pin through.

It's probably all academic, I'm not likely to try it just I'm interested if there's a potential solution. Thought project only. It's interesting and people have had some good thoughts on this. Thanks!
 
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Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,002
885
Lancashire
Is the stickman still working? I seem to recall his website said he wasn't but could be wrong or it of date.
 

Broch

Full Member
Jan 18, 2009
4,647
3,900
Mid Wales
I have wanted a makila for a long time, maybe that could be made two piece with bronze ferrules and short thread ...

The design of Makila I have seen is very much like the snooker cue but the threaded part is in the handle with a spike on (of course). I have always fancied one but they are illegal in the UK (hidden weapon and all that).
 

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