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thumb stick

8768 Views 20 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Rodney
Another thumb stick for a friend

straightened it today started polishing the buffalo horn yet to be attched and the shank treated

this is what I use as a bending jig heat the shank and flex them into shape Wood Hat Hardwood Varnish Wood stain
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water buffalo horn with a bone collar

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I like your straightening jig cobalt. That is a good looking thumb stick too,
Those Buffalo horn lyre shapes make a good looking thumb stick and is a very tactile material especially whe the finish only reqiures a good T- cut and polish.

Self shaped buffalo heads or boughten blanks?
I traded some shanks for the blank from a better stickmaker than myself .I am not set up to work any type of horn yet but it is my goal to do so.

And go to workshops when I can to watch experienced stick makers do it.

Its good to watch videos but to work at the side of a good stick maker is much better there a good bunch they take they time showing how its done .and answer any question
Another beautiful stick cobalt! I was wondering.. Is there a preferred length for a thumb stick relating to the user's height? As in elbow or shoulder high when the hand is resting on the stick or shoulder s it more where the hand is comfortable?
with the height of a thumb stick I think its just personal preference .I make mine around a right angle to the elbow . .I just like thumb sticks made from buffalo horn but still want a rams horn crook .but it would have to be one I made myself. But yet to get the equipment to do it.

The stick I use the most is my avatar the dodo probably like me out of date and old fashioned, I Often use the griffin stick I made for my self as well made some 4 of these now .

But for me its the pleasure of making any sort of stick them even if there for a friend
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Hi Cobalt, One of the dvd's I have is one of Alan Bateman's and he produces a rams horn crook with minimal equipment - 2 flat steel plates in a vice for flattening the curl, a home made lever to pull out the curl and an assortment of hardwood formers ,blocks,wedges, G clamps etc, after all crooks were made before hydraulic presses and steel bending jigs.
I looked at a few of Mr. Bateman's you-tube videos He makes nice sticks.
Alan taught me at evening classes back in 80's
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had a piece of cherry wood cut for a thumb stick for some time hoping to cap it with buffalo horn and give it its final shape to flow into the shank.

still some work to do on it but from a scrap piece of cherry I `m satisfied with it so far

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Wood Gesture Water Thumb Nail
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That will look good when finished.
looks interesting, looking forward to seeing the finish stick.
just have to give the shank some Danish oil and fix the ferule

The shanks aren't top grade but good enough for a working stick


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What do you look for in a top grade stick?

The thumb sticks look good. I like how the cherry one turned out.

Good job cobalt. two great looking thumb sticks.
Hi Question why is the buffalo not rounded as is the cherry ?
Nice pair of sticks Cobalt, your friend will be more than pleased with the horn stick, well done.

With reference to Stickies question. am I right in assuming that the "rounding off" is at the base of the thumb hole for comfort when holding?. In the past when making thumb sticks for family & friends I have not completed until they have tried them, so as to fit both in length and grip area to suit their hand and height for comfort.
Why isnt it rounded as the cherry well the cherry is mine , my friend said he wanted it as it was? i have told him when he has used it think he may change his mind,

much more comfortable to use when rounded,

I have yet to put a ferule on it so its comfortable height for him
What do you look for in a top grade stick?

The thumb sticks look good. I like how the cherry one turned out.

this depends what you want the stick fo.r stickle will know better then me what a show stick is

what I want is a straight shank without side shoots that's come out of it ,tapering down from 1 inch down to say 3/4 , nice colour, sound ,I have seen some crackle glaze type bark on some hazel never found out where they come from, think it came from the east coast of Scotland. I like the welsh coloured hazel with its pinkish hint

but its all a matter of taste .

I would love to lay my hands on some wood to make one piece crook , but will have to make a two piece one hoping to get some sycamore for it.
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