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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
being a newbie to stick carving i would like a little info on the size of the sticks . length for walking sticks and thicknes as i don,t want them to heavy. i have a bunch of willow i cut in october but have not debarked them yet and i don't want to cut them shorter untill i debark them . please pass on any and all info thanks
 

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I think the size is a personal preference. Some people like them lighter, some like them heavier. Some like a thin stick, some like a larger one.
 

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Yep - it definitely depends on personal preference. However, if you are trying to just crank some out in general, I would keep them around 5 ft in length. It has been my experience that most people ask for a stick anywhere from 55" to 60" long, for the most part. I wouldn't go anything thicker than 2" in diameter, unless of course, you want extra material in order to figure carve something in the shaft; then it's real nice to have that. Willow is pretty light when seasoned. Too thin and it will be weak, since it is a fairly soft wood. It does carve nicely!
 

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I am a newbie, so take what I say with a grain of salt. This past Saturday, I spent an hour looking for walking stick material. I took a walking stick that was made for me, it's light weight and no more than five feet in length. That stick was very useful in the woods, especially when brushing aside some of the thorn bushes that are thick in some areas. It was also useful as noted above, when travelling down steep slopes.

Near the end of my allotted time, I found a young Black Locust tree about 2" in diameter that had been cut months ago along a power line right of way. I cut about a seven foot length and headed back to the truck. This required climbing up two rock escarpments, with knees that have seen too many hard landings and are no longer much good for such things. The short, lightweight stick was of little use here, but the long, heavy stick, I'll call it a staff, with bark still on, provided a good grip and really helped my balance when climbing up.

And so, one stick was great for moving down slopes and through thick underbrush. The cumbersome and uncut staff was very useful for negotiating some steep rock faces. Regarding the latter, I think I will try to leave a bit of the bark on where I might grip it for similar purposes, carve a smaller smooth grip more comfortable for walking, and reduce the length to perhaps 6'. That way, I'll have sticks for different purposes.
 
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