Making a cedar walking stick

I have a 14.5' cedar that I want to make some walking sticks out of. The tree is dead. Everything is brown. It was probably damaged during Hurricane Isabel. The diameter at the larger end is 4.75".
Can anyone suggest a book or website on the subject? I don't have any power tools, so I need suggestions on hand tools. Drying? Anything you wish you did when making your own?
Thanks
Joan
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Joan, Try to obtain a copy of the December 2003 Woodwork magazine (Woodwork 84). There is an article by Paul Sellers that covers making walking sticks using basic hand tools. Their phone number is (415) 382-0580 and they do sell back issues.
Stuart Johnson Red Oak, Texas
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I've seen a book (or books) on making walking sticks at Borders and Barnes and Noble. A search on any online book retailer gives numerous books.
-JBB

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I think that you will find Cedar too soft and weak for a walking stick. You need a strong, hard wood.

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There was an article in a recent issue (fall, sometime) of Woodwork magazine about WW with kids and a walking stick is one of the three projects highlighted. Because it was intended for working with kids, exposure to power tools was kept to a minimum. I don't have the magazine in front of me, but if you drop me a line and remind me, I'll go dig it up.
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JD wrote:

I don't know what tools you have on hand, but the classics for that type of work are a shavehorse and a drawknife. I supose a heavy knife and a table mounted vise would work, but not as easily or as safely. Dave in Fairfax
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Dave in Fairfax wrote "....but the classics for that type of work are a shavehorse and a drawknife....."
Drawknife is what I am looking for. I want to shave down to the heart wood. I will see if I can find the magazine that was suggested to me.
What I am making is for hiking, not a cane.
Thanks
Joan
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JD wrote:

Where are you located. Drawknives are pretty common over here. You can always get one off eBay if they aren't to be found where you are, but antiques stores generally have a couple kicking around. The trick is what you haold the wood with while you use the drawknife. Remember to wear your chest board if you aren't very used to using one, and remember, VERY sharp works best. Dave in Fairfax
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Dave, if you are in Fairfax, VA, then I am south of you. There used to be a woodworking store in a strip mall in town. I will check them out this week.
Thanks
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JD wrote:

That's the Fairfax, actually nearer to Burke, that I'm in. I take it that you're in VA also, but there's a lot of it south of me. There's a Woodcraft near Fischer's in Springfield, is that what you're thinking of? Contact me off-line if I can help in any way. Dave in Fairfax
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On 14-Dec-2003, snipped-for-privacy@msn.com (JD) wrote:

Cedar will be strong enough and light, however, you'll need to put a cane tip on the bottom - cedar won't take a lot of abuse at the end. You can get brass or steel cane tips. One example:
The staff tip is probably appropriate - note the page shows C$ - hit the currency button to see US$.
Mike
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Michael Daly wrote:

For hiking IMHO, forget brass or steel. Get a rubber one from a pharmacy or other place that sells canes people are expected to actually use. Much better traction on rocks. A stick that skitters away from you and dumps you on your ass isn't much good at all, and keeping the end from splintering is only part of the equation. DAMHIKT.
I've got one stick that I've probably put close to a thousand miles on. That's a pretty sobering thought, but my math is right. Even if I only go 25 times a year (conservative), the trip is about five miles, and I've had the stick for 10 years. 25 * 10 = 250 trips * 5 miles = 1250 miles on this thing. Wow. It still has the same rubber tip on it.
(Unfortunately, I just broke the stick last year, or it would be eleven years on the same stick. :( I can't bear to throw it away, and I'm thinking about splinting it back together somehow, though my new stick is working out just fine.)
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The Lee Valley one I pointed Joan to includes both a rubber tip and a steel spike. I'd be worried about using just rubber, as it might not strengthen the wood end enough. Putting the brass collar around the end of the cedar will help prevent the end from splintering.
I've used hiking sticks with rubber and with carbide spikes. Both are good in the appropriate conditions. Rocky - go with rubber. Anything else, the spike is good.
Mike
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Michael Daly wrote:

Oh. Well, I didn't follow the link, so shame on me. :)
I'd be worried about using just rubber, as it might not strengthen

For cedar, *maybe* that would be a problem, but cedar is pretty tough. My thousand-mile stick is Norway maple, and it survived a lot of abuse with just the rubber tip.
I've found that the ends don't want to splinter unless you bash them directly onto the ground, which the rubber prevents.

Why would anybody ever go hiking any place where there weren't lots of rocks? :)
(Seriously, I never thought of a spike. Wouldn't be any good where I live. Every place I've ever gone hiking has been decidedly rocky. Some more than others. If I'm hiking, I'm in a forest, and if I'm in a forest around here, I'm in land too steep and rocky to turn into a strip mall or a housing development for rich people.)
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On 13 Dec 2003 11:54:20 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@msn.com (JD) wrote:

Spokeshave.
Drawknives are hard to use, especially for getting a smooth finish. Personally I don't like to use one, unless I'm sitting on a real shave horse. There's just too much scope for horrible green woodworker seppuku otherwise.
Easiest spokeshave to use is either a wooden one, or the new Veritas copy of the style. They both have a lower angle iron than an iron shave.
If you do use an iron spokeshave, try to find a Stanley #63 or #64 - the little ones. They're much better behaved than the more typical #151 design. Modern iron spokeshaves of this pattern, whether by Stanley, Record or Kunz, are almost unusable.
-- What ? Me ? Evil Dictator of Iraq ? Nah mate, I'm just a Hobbit, honest
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