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nice work Gloops. look forward to seeing it on the shaft.
 

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You have a good facility for capturing the characteristic shape, I'm not familiar enough w. dogs, but upon reading "whippet" the identity popped right up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You have a good facility for capturing the characteristic shape, I'm not familiar enough w. dogs, but upon reading "whippet" the identity popped right up.
Thanks, for the reply, if interested my methodology for dog, bird toppers is as follows

find a model of the dog, prefer the "Leanardo range" as these are true to life.

Photograph the model 3 views, side, front, top (Just the Head and neck)

Use these in "Sketchbook Pro" on Ipad Take pictures with ipad also

Create pattern to the size Irequired align and stick on a block of wood, cut the profiles on Bandsaw

Carve the profile to shape'

When carving I find it useful to save the card cut from around the head pattern as these pieces give me external profiles of the head to

use as templates.

Please ask anything you wish to Know, allways glad to help, we are all here to learn.

****
 

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Looking forward seeing it mounted think it will be a great looking sick

That is exactly the way i work with patterens ,but always draw them freehand .the side and top views gives all the information you need.

But getting hold of good photos can be difficult and never bother what size of photo i get as i usually remodel the picture freehand to suit the position of the head i want.

My starting point is always the diameter of the shank , this gives me the basic diameter of the head which is usually twice the size of the shank for waterfowl then allow for the beak if its a waterfowl.and you will get a good transition between the topper and the shank which is cruical for a well balanced look.

This is why wild fowl and most birds and animals with a neck on always work the best is where ts meets the shank the topper should become part of the neck allowing for good transition.

The dragon and griffin was designed with this in mind

This allows the topper to be used as a handle for a walking stick or as a topper for a hiking pole.dpending on the position of the head,

To try and carve a feature the same diameter onto the stick makes the feature to small , difficult to carve .makesit look out of balance and for me never works.as the head of the animal etc should always be larger than the shank it is intended for. it just gives a better balanced look,

Its just a case of saving the template and modifying the head position and neck then.

Maybe you guys dont agree ?

I think the only thing thats works well carved directly onto the shank is the wood spirit, which dosnt seem very popular here.I have never seen one apart from this site.

I dont know why the wood spirit is so popular in america yet never seem to be carved here , the majority this side of the pond seem to be dogs and birds .

when you go to a stickmakers club its always horn of one kind or another, but overall still find a rams horn market stick the best looking.,just personal taste i guess.
 

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I keep looking at the topper you have done it seems ergonomic in design and should make it quite comfortable to hold as a walking stick . the palm of the habd should sit well whilst allowing a good grip . you will have to post photo of it when complete . iit will also make a good topper.

I oftern carve toppers never fit all of them till i sell some so its important to me to get a simule diameter shank , pleased to say i dont seem to have a problem with it as i normally cut my shanks longer when i harvest them so shorten it to the diameter i want then trim the shank to size.
 

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The advantage of the topper is that it can be bigger than the shank or shaff. A contrasting wood Can add to the look also. I do not see May of the wild life toppers here in the states. Not sure why we do more deceive carving on the shank or staff here. The goal for me is to have the wood spirit blend in to the staff. Same with leaves or other shallow relief carving on the stick. When I get cought up. I am planing to do some carved cane handles and other toppers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I keep looking at the topper you have done it seems ergonomic in design and should make it quite comfortable to hold as a walking stick . the palm of the habd should sit well whilst allowing a good grip . you will have to post photo of it when complete . iit will also make a good topper.

I oftern carve toppers never fit all of them till i sell some so its important to me to get a simule diameter shank , pleased to say i dont seem to have a problem with it as i normally cut my shanks longer when i harvest them so shorten it to the diameter i want then trim the shank to size.
I tend to make all my sticks long so they can be sized to suit who has them, personally I prefer to walk with a long stick.

If the stick used as a normal short length I try to make the topper so that the thumb can sit on top of the head with th fingers under the throat thus allowing the dog to see where it is going :).

One thing I have recently started doing is, when I have drilled the shank to take the topper I cut a 5mm washer from the drilled shank, bond the threaded bar into the Topper blank( first job after cutting the blank) I then use this washer fastened to the topper to give me a guide for roughing down to.This can be seen in the pictures.

Having the threaded bar fitted at the blank stage allows me to fasten it to my carvers vice when hard materiall or hidden Knot is encountered, this is for safety as I use a knife for approx 90% of the carving.
 

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I can see the advantage of useing a slice of the shank to help with the fitting ,not a bad idea. should help fitting a good deal
 
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