28/03/2015 - Close season project

Had cut some hazel shanks when I was in Wales last winter with a view to having a go at making some wading staffs. After 12 months seasoning in my garage they are ready to go. Had a look on the web for some design ideas for my first attempt. The picture below shows the result.

Finished article

Got most of the bits I needed off eBay - EVA rod grip for the handle, 5mm paracord, two sizes of shrink wrap, carabiner clip and a rubber walking stick ferrule.

Handle with thumb notch sanded into the top of the shank

I also scrounged some lead flashing off a friend from work to weight the end to stop the staff floating away when you let go of it.

1lb of lead shrink wrapped to the end

I left the bark on the shank as I liked the effect, just cutting off any nodules and giving it a light sanding. I've also oiled it rather than varnishing it, again because it brought out the natural patterns. Will just need oiling every so often to maintain the protection. This first one was actually meant to be a fiftieth birthday present for a friend to take on his annual sewin and salmon fishing trips to the River Teifi. However, I think I might keep it!  

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