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Those amazing multi-piece canes Rodney posts have been making me want to try my hand at doing one. It didn't turn out half bad. I didn't entirely abandon my liking for root handles, though.

The handle is the root from a cherry blank I had. It was kind of an ugly stick, though, even by my standards, so I lopped off the end, flipped it over and drilled it out to accept a tenon. (Drilled it only part way before my drill crapped out on me, that is. I finished the mortise with my Dremel tool.) The angle of the handle to the shank is a bit off.

I cut a piece of maple for a spacer and managed to drill a hole in it with my bit and brace. (The handle was kind of an odd shape and I couldn't hold it well enough to use the bit and brace on it. I don't have a bench, so I usually hold things in one hand and drill/cut/file with the other, as the cuts on my hand will attest to.)

I took a long yellow birch shank and cut a foot or so from the end then rasped a tenon on it, down to a saw kerf a couple of inches from the new top end.

Took a while to get the joints tight; they looked better than I thought they would.
 

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Amazing is overstating it I think. I have a long way to go for my work to be amazing.

Great job on your stick. Interesting shape on the root handle and your joints are nice and tight.

Rodney
 

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Thanks guys! Except for the angle of the handle I was pretty happy with the way it turned out. One other minor flaw was in the first pic there is a tiny bit of blue between the shank and the maple spacer. A bit of the blue masking tape I put on to protect the bark got stuck in the joint. I wanted to bring down the top of the handle a bit more but I was afraid I'd run into the mortise if I did.

If anything, making this one has made me even more of a fan of yellow birch. Not for how nice it looks when it is finished, but for its unexpected toughness, something you just don't think of when you hear "birch". To make the tenon for the handle, I cut a couple of saw kerfs around the shank and wanted to split off the waste, but this stuff was a lot more stringy than I'd expected. A lot of wood will just pop off when you do a stop cut and try to split it off, but after a few tries with four different knives, I gave up and used the Shinto rasp on it. The stuff just wouldn't split. Cut myself a couple of times trying to hold the thing and get enough leverage with the knife.

And Rodney, I think you're being a bit modest or over-critical of your work. :bow: I bow to your skills.
 

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When I look at the work other members here do it reminds me to stay humble. I'm not in their league. Not only can they make a well formed handle, they can carve a nice animal figure on it too.

Don't sell yourself short either. It takes skill to make a nice natural one piece stick too. The raw materials are hard to find plus it takes a good eye to recognize a good stick when you do see it. There's also skill involved in shaping them into usable sticks after they're harvested.
 
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