A walking stick can keep you doing what you love to do: hike. It will help you walk, supplementing your legs with upper body strength. This lets you preserve your energy, lasting longer, hiking farther; seeing more natural beauty. The walking stick can help you navigate streams without getting wet and help you to avoid mud puddles. If you are serious about hiking and would like the help of a walking stick, install a T-handle for an easier grip.
Find a suitable walking stick at least 36 inches long. If you are taller, try a stick that is at least 40 inches long. You can find it outside on a trail or you can buy the wood from a store. Popular woods for walking sticks include diamond willow and chestnut, but any hardwood will do.
Find a piece of similar wood, about the same circumference, that is at least 5 inches long. You might be able to cut the end off an extremely long piece of wood, making two pieces: the walking stick and the handle.
Decide which end of the walking stick will be the handle or top. Tighten the stick into a table vice so that approximately 8 inches at the top of the cane pop through. Make the wood secure, but don't let the vice grip be so tight that it harms the integrity of the wood.
Use a ruler to measure the width of the wood about two inches from the top of the walking stick. Eyeball it as close as possible. Find a drill bit that is about 1/8 inch smaller than the width of the wood.
Keeping the ruler in place, mark the centre of the width with a pencil an inch or two below the top of the walking stick. Drill through the wood on the centre mark. This should leave a hole with very thin walls.
Use a wood saw to cut the thin walls in their centre, cutting the circle of the hole in half. You can do this without measuring; just use your eyes. Remove the top of the walking stick and discard it.
Tape the top of the walking stick. Wrap masking tape around it in layers. Tape approximately one-half inch down from the bottom of the half-circle cut. This will prevent the wood from splitting when you screw the T-handle in.
Fit the handle stick into the seat of the circle cut. Decide how you want the handle to sit on the top of the cane, then use a pencil to mark off any excess to be cut away. Cut your handle the way you like with a wood saw.
Hold the finished handle in place and get your ruler. Hold the ruler where the edge is parallel, running down the centre of the walking stick, and where the top end of the ruler sticks out beyond the width of the handle approximately 2 inches. Use the pencil to make a dot on the top of the handle, in the middle of its width, centre over the circumference of the walking stick. Let the ruler guide you.
Drill a hole slightly wider than your screw through the top of the handle on the centre dot.
Coat the seat of the walking stick with a carpenter's glue. Do be afraid to use to much. You can wipe or sand away any excess.
Place the handle in the appropriate position on your walking stick's seat. Use a screwdriver to drive the 4-inch wood screw into the walking stick through the handle. Screw until the head of the screw is below the wood of the handle and firmly grips into the walking stick.
Let the carpenter's glue dry approximately two hours. Remove the masking tape on your walking stick. Sand any excess glue away.
You'll be best off finding a stick much too large for the project, more than 40 inches. After you attach the handle, cut the walking stick to a custom height.
Tips and warnings
- You'll be best off finding a stick much too large for the project, more than 40 inches. After you attach the handle, cut the walking stick to a custom height.