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I am fortunate enough to own one of the best-looking canes I know of -- the head is based on one Lalique made for the last Czar of Russia -- but due to various medical needs, I can't use it at its current length. Need to add four inches or so to it. I'm thinking perhaps a sleeve around a dowel at the bottom of the shaft but I'm not sure. Thoughts, anyone? Along w/ resources for the parts if possible? Thanks!

Attached a few photos of this beauty. Two of them show the topper before it was attached, but now that it's on the cane, I don't see any easy way of getting it off.
 

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Hello floyddd. If you have not attached the topper to the shaft permanently I would recommend getting a new shaft. It looks like a 1inch or 1 1/8th in shaft. you can order those in a variety of woods in 36" and 48" dowels and cut it to fit. Woodcraft sells them. If you have to us the on you have adding the length below the topper not on th bottom and I would use althread not a dowel.
 

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I had exactly the same problem. I thought of simply joining a short section to the bottom of the cane, using a threaded rod and epoxy. But it would probably be too noticeable, and would certainly create a weak spot, prone to breakage. In the end, I cut off the topper (like yours, it formed a "socket" for the stick) and drilled, gouged, and finally ground out the remnant of the shaft and adhesive, being very careful not to mar the surface of the topper. Then I attached it to a new shaft of appropriate length. It was a shame to waste a very attractive stick, but the thing was of no use as it was.
 

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with glue I would try a heat gun or dipping the end into very hot water to weaken the glue bond. then wrap the head in a leather glove before putting it in a vise. use a pipe wrench to hold the stick and hammer (Tap) the wood out of the head
 
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