The author has spent his working life in engineering. Firstly as an apprentice and finally as a Director with special responsibility for jig and tool design and manufacturing methods. Despite the fact that every working day involved dealing with steel and their alloys, etc., there was always an interest in working with wood and the enjoyment in working with woodcutting tools.
It was not surprising that, on retirement it seemed a natural progression to find a hobby using wood as a medium, and his thoughts turned to woodcarving. However, whilst searching the library bookshelves for books on this subject, several books on walking sticks and relating methods of manufacture captured his attention.
After much interesting reading it was obvious that the subject was far more involved and interesting, and time–consuming than the layman would have first envisaged. It was a subject which would involve design and many facets of the practical side of manufacture and production ideas.The bait was taken and the decision to “have–a–go” materialised.Walking in the countryside with his wife Audrey was always pleasurable, so collecting a few shanks whilst out walking resulted in the ideal combination of exercise and a hobby in the making.
Almost twelve months elapsed before several shanks, collected whilst out walking, were dry enough to be straightened. Two particular ones were selected out of about a dozen, to be the experimental ones.The first one chosen was a very nicely marked hazel shank for Audrey; the second one being a heavier ash stick for his own use.The straightening process took some time but eventually the shanks were ready for dressing. A well– seasoned piece of sycamore provided sufficient material for two heads which were dowelled and glued, and once tips had been fitted, both sticks were treated with two coats of yacht varnish. These are the ‘badged’ sticks on the front cover.
Casebound – 54 pages