Forums > Technical Discussion > How would I make a sectioned staff?

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TheBovrilMonkey
TheBovrilMonkey

Liquid Cow
Location: High Wycombe, England
Member Since: 3rd Sep 2001
Total posts: 2629
Posted:I've been trying to make a long (6 feet) staff split into 3 sections that I can take apart to fit in my rucksack when I'm going camping, but I'm not having much luck.So far I've tried compression joints but they still let the ends wobble.Does anyone else have any ideas as to how I can do this, or should I just use roundhead screws to hold the sections together?

But there's no sense crying over every mistake. You just keep on trying till you run out of cake.

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Fire Princess
member
Location: London/Brighton, UK
Member Since: 18th Jan 2001
Total posts: 130
Posted:Go for the wimp's option and buy one?No, seriously, I have a bought one and I'll do me best to describe it to you:It is all made of aluminium (I think, - a very light metal anyway). It is in 3 parts - a 'middle' and 2 end sections. The middle bit is slightly fatter than then end sections so they slot inside it. It is a pretty tight fit, so I'd guess they wouldn't be more than 1mm less in diameter. The end sections have got rubber ends (like table feet)that seem to help with the tightness of fit into the middle bit.Now for how it's all held in place...The mid-section has holes drilled all the way through at either end.The end sections have holes drilled through them at set intervals (say, 10cm apart).Basically you line up the holes (on the end bits and middle bit) to whatever length you want, and fix them together with a bolty/clippy thing.The clippy thing:I have no idea where you would get one of these, but if you're well into making things maybe you could make it yourself. It's like the things you use on your tent to clip the tent to the poles, with a sticky out bolt in the middle (pointing towards the inside). It's about a 3/4 plastic ring, with a bolt the exact size of the drilled holes, so everything slots together in about 10 seconds and doesn't make that annoying rattling noise you get with some collapsible staves.It also means you can adjust the size of the staff (handy if you need to practice in a small room).I hope you could make head and tail of what I'm trying to say, because this is a really natty design. Although, if you didn't want immediate collapsibility, yeah I suppose you could use screws.I'd still go for the wimp's option myself and just buy one, but good luck to you!Princess xxx

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adamrice
adamrice

poo-bah
Location: Austin TX USA
Member Since: 19th Dec 2000
Total posts: 1015
Posted:I've been noodling over this myself. I'd like to make a wooden take-apart staff. I haven't tried yet, and it may not be feasible, but what I plan on doing is to drill a hole into each tip where there's going to be a joint, screw a threaded insert into each of these holes, and use threaded rod to join them together. I don't know if those joints will be strong enough to hold up to staffing--I'll find out when I finally build the thing.The shop on this website sells a 3-part aluminum staff (with a different coupling method than FP describes). I've got one. It feels a little whippy and wobbly, to be honest, but it has the virtue of being available right this minute.

Laugh while you can, monkey-boy

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psychomonkey
member
Location: Kansas City, MO USA
Member Since: 14th Dec 2000
Total posts: 148
Posted:Adam, my local Biglots sells 3part wooden poles for handles (washing windows and such) for a few bucks per 3 section pack. They have pretty decent wooden threading on them. The threads are large, so slipping and breakage should be OK. You might want to check that option for wood.-PSM

One can only see what one observes, and one observes only things which are already in the mind.-Alphonse Bertillon

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:P'Monkey, I've experimented with several breakdown staffs, and have found that a single screw or bolt in the middle will bend very easily no matter how large it is.If you do want to use something that attaches in the very centre, you'll need to brace that point in some way or you may end up with an 'L' shape...------------------Charles (INFERNO)newdolbel@hotmail.comhttp://juggling.co.nz

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Sabine
member
Location: Australia
Member Since: 19th Sep 2001
Total posts: 29
Posted:Bovril Monkey,Have you tried the local paint store. I have seen a telescoping steel handle (1.0-1.8m)for roller painting. Perhaps this could be an option? They were selling for $14 Australian.Sabine

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Posted:Hey - I've got a two sectional firestaff, with a thread in the middle which screws into an inset 'thingo' on the other bit. It works fine. I'm sure if I dropped it heaps on concrete from high heights, it would be stuffed soon - but its lasted over a years so far.Jsoh

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DJ Dantana
veteran
Location: Stillwater, Ok. USA
Member Since: 15th Aug 2001
Total posts: 1495
Posted:some of those colapsable painting extentions or broom handles might work. available at the local hardware store. you might also thing about the fittings they use for pool sticks...might be strong enough. I tried using PVC pipe and fittings once. I had a nice five section staff, it all screwed together, adjustable length. Filled it with water and it had a nice weight. But a friend broke it...I probably would have eventualy anyways, it wasn't to strong.

we eat and we drink and we smoke and we try!

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psychomonkey
member
Location: Kansas City, MO USA
Member Since: 14th Dec 2000
Total posts: 148
Posted:I've never seen kiln dried wood bend, especially when the stress points would be off centered.-PSM------------------"One can only see what one observes, and one observes only things which are already in the mind."-Alphonse Bertillon

One can only see what one observes, and one observes only things which are already in the mind.-Alphonse Bertillon

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:I'm a little confused when people talk about wood bending...My staffs get bent about as often as i use them although they are all aluminium.But I've got three wooden practice staffs and even after a 15 metre throw dropped on concrete all that ever happens to them is the ends get a little scuffed (this is a lot less than tends to happen to the concrete!).At the very worst the wood will flex a tiny bit for a mili-hertbeat and then spring back into shape.It looks like my practice staffs will last me for the rest of my life (wish i could say the same about my performance staffs).The only way to bend solid wood that i know if is to soak it in liquid for a long time, and then bend it with a machine that holds it rigid until the liquid evaporates out...Maybe you guys have had wooden ones bend or other issues, I'd love to to hear about it if you have...------------------Charles (INFERNO)newdolbel@hotmail.comhttp://juggling.co.nz

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catboy
member
Location: leicester, england
Member Since: 24th Sep 2001
Total posts: 167
Posted:i was thinking about this the otherday, and decided the best thing to use would be the plastic end caps on the top half of a crutch (I know crutches are different in the UK to other places). these stop the crutch from rattling, and they are basically just a bush.Rather than going round mugging people with broken legs, I tried to get some softish (and pref self lubricating) plastic material such as nylatron (cheap as chips too..
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and machine it to suit...if you get three lengths of aluminium tube (two pieces should be the same length and bore / wall thickness, the third should be larger (i used 20mm and 25mm dia with a 16swg wall)) and some nylatron (or similar). Then machine the nylatron down so its a real tight fit inside the larger piece of tube, with a shoulder on one end which covers the wall thickness of the tube up and finishes it nicely (1.6mm shoulder for 16swg...). next bore a hole down the middle of the nylatron which is v. close to the external bore of the smaller tube (i used 20.1mm drill for the 20mm tube, but the nylatron will swell up again afterwards which gives a tight fit) andthen put a chamfer on the shoulder end of the hole. If you make the nylatron insert long enough (80 - 100mm is easy enough) this prevents any wobbling. you can then superglue an insert into each end of the larger tube. drill through the tube, insert and tube (with the small tube inside the insert) to prevent crushing any of the tubes, and bolt through to hold inplace. sounds tricky, but its quite easy and only took about 10 mins to machine the two inserts... you can do it an pretty much any metal working lathe, provided you keep the speed down low enough to prevent distortion...if you want any more info, let me know and I will mail you some pics...hanks_benjamin_j@cat.comben(ps total cost was about 3- GBP excluding wicks)


you can take the cat out of the jungle, but you cant take the jungle out of the cat

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xaeda
xaeda

member
Location: Sydney, Australia
Member Since: 16th Dec 2000
Total posts: 129
Posted:I'm in the process of making one now :-) I was wondering through the weird industrial area of town and found an engineering store - one of those places that sells giant hoses and tools and connectythingies. "hmmm, connectythingies", I thought ;-) Anyway, I found these tube things that are meant for connecting large hoses together (warning, impossible-to-follow description to come). They're made from black polypropylene, quite styley looking. One has a thread halfway down of the inside, the other one has a thread halfway down the outside, so they connect together. The unthreaded inside is just smooth plastic, with a 19 mm inside diameter. They should have been quite expensive - $12 NZ for each section (I bought 2 of each), which is just ridiculous. But somehow, due to a pricing mix up and the well documented "attractive young girl vs socially deprived engineer" effect, I managed to get them for $8.70 total! Heh, crazy stuff......I don't know what dodgy old men think they're going to achieve by giving me discounts (it's happened several times in these kinds of places, and I'm certainly not particularly attractive or flirtatious), but hey, I'm broke and happy to take the discount ;-) So aaaanyways, tomorrow I'm going to buy 3 lenths of 19 mm aluminium tubing, and just glue these thingamies over the ends of the tubes. The guy at the store reccomended loctite 3801, I'm hoping this will work. (won't be anywhere near the flames, so it should be okay).Yay, I've wanted a sectioned staff for sooo long! I'll let you know how it works out :-)xaeda<wishing she was good enough to win the video comp cause she can't afford kevlar right now> ;-)

the memories fire, the rhythm falls slow....

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xaeda
xaeda

member
Location: Sydney, Australia
Member Since: 16th Dec 2000
Total posts: 129
Posted:hmm, either my previous message will come up a billion times due to overly-enthusiastic clicking on my part, or it won't come up at all. Sorry either way :-)Anyways, here are the connector things I mentioned, if the last message ever comes up, that is
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the memories fire, the rhythm falls slow....

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Fire Princess
member
Location: London/Brighton, UK
Member Since: 18th Jan 2001
Total posts: 130
Posted:Good idea, X.
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BTW - you can delete excess posts by clicking on the pencil thingy in the bar above them.Princess xxx


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xaeda
xaeda

member
Location: Sydney, Australia
Member Since: 16th Dec 2000
Total posts: 129
Posted:thanks fireprincess :-)Somehow UBB managed to gobble my posts so that when I viewed this thread, they weren't visible. But you saw them, so it must have been something specific to this dodgy varsity network or something. Ah well, all fixed now. Oh yeah, the server for the pic is down at the moment, but it should be up later, I did check the address :-)xaeda

the memories fire, the rhythm falls slow....

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Spyke
member
Location: Wageningen
Member Since: 22nd Feb 2002
Total posts: 28
Posted:I know this subject has been flogged within inches of its life and we are all sick of it, but i'll ask any way ( fearing recriminiation and ostracization from the crowd )

upon searching for something to do with this topic i happened upon nought that refered to my specific dilema so instead of starting a new one thread i thought i'd bump up this post ( hoping that i did the right thing and earnt back some of my lost respect, but knowing that i probably did the wrong thing )

Has any tried constructing their own 3-piece staff and used those button thingamebobs that are sometimes used in tent poles. You push down this little nubbin and slide a pole over and it pops up into a hole on the pole, holding it tight as can be.

You can buy them at camping stores (I only know of one actually, and they have one packet left) and the look like a v-shaped length of metal which acts asa spring and has a little nubbin on it. (Nubbin=little cylinder with dome head, bout 5mm high)

I am trying to build one and am currently on type 1 prototype with type 2 planned as soon as the uni workshop opens again.

The middle section is smaller than the two ends and two metal collars welded onto the middle, 12cm from the ends, absorbs any shocks from the ends which occur from dropping . (This battering causes great stress on the little nubbin which can damage the integrity of the holes.)

SO far i am very poleased with it, but would like to know if anyone has tried this and resulted in disaster, which at this stage i am keen to avoid

Spyke


'At this moment, you should be with us, feeling like we do, like you loved to, but never will again.'

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:I know of several attempts using this type of breakdown staff.

Some were awful, some were quite good. The biggest issue is the strength of the whole unit.

The best peice of advice I can give is to use high-quality strong tubing for breakdowns, the deisgn is very important, but if you use cheap materials to begin with, you'll never know of the design is sound or not.

I would also recommend trying to get the end piece right through the handle so that they are or nearly touching each other in the centre.

Many of the bad designs have the ends locking in at the outer edge of the handle and they act like level intent on bending or breaking. through the middle, the stress will be graduated along the whole handle.

If you like heavy staffs, also try to put wooden dowl inside the hollow tubes, that will give a lot more strength than an unsupported hollow tube.

Best of luck, I'd love to hear how mark II comes out.


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Maximus
member
Location: Upland, CA., USA
Member Since: 13th Dec 2001
Total posts: 250
Posted:I use those button thingamabobs. I get mine from hospital equipment. They work very good. no failures in years of use. Also, I use steel, not aluminum, for the shafts.


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I've made 2-, 3-, and 5-piece staffs this way.

And I've tried those wooden screw-together poles. All broke right away. Wooden threads can't take any abuse. I picked up one of those telescoping aluminum poles. I haven't wicked it up yet, but it actually spins pretty good (I was afraid it might be wobbly). I think it would do the job.

Good luck,

Maximus


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Spyke
member
Location: Wageningen
Member Since: 22nd Feb 2002
Total posts: 28
Posted:Maximus, a quick quiry on that design if i could:

THe holes near the wick are for bigger flames yes. thru more oxygen? If so, wouldn't the go out quicker? Or are they for some other reason? Either way, they look cool!

Is five piece stronger that 3 if they all overlap and is it way heavy cos of the steel?

I'm rethinking and maybe adding those extra pieces for strength and the ability for variable length.

Thanks for the advice though Charles and Maximus, lets hope this turns out to be one of the quiet good ones!

Spyke


'At this moment, you should be with us, feeling like we do, like you loved to, but never will again.'

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ding-0-
member
Location: baltimore, md, usa
Member Since: 1st Aug 2001
Total posts: 5
Posted:My staff is aluminum ends attached to an oak dowl with wood screws. The wood is nice and relativly non slip, the ends are slightly heavyer than the middle so it has a nice follow through with out being excessivly heavy and the wood dosn't heat up the same way an all metal staff does. I do have to wrap the wood screw with eletrical tape before I spin.

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted:ding-o-

Does your staff actually break down again, or is a 3 piece staff that stays in one piece?


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[Nx?]
[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both
Member Since: 5th Nov 2001
Total posts: 3749
Posted:charlie,

why is your staff casualtity (humm) rate so high? Ive never managed to bend an ally pole, not even the 5/8" one I have. Is it doing cartwheels and stuff? cos if it is Im gonna stay away. Used to use staeel staffs but they bent all the time (or were way too heavy, or both) and Ive found for contact a strait staff is much easier.

I thought this tread was going to be about making 3 section staffs, oh well. If there are any suggestions (preferably with lightweight, non-leathal material) that'd be nice, or I could start a new thread I suppose...

N


This is a post by tom, all spelling is deleberate
-><- Kallisti

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Charles
Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland
Member Since: 27th Jun 2001
Total posts: 3989
Posted::Frowns at the person who called Charles CHARLIE!!!!:

:but then shrugs and gets over it like all well adjusted adults:

Nixie... I wish I could do cartwheels and stuff, and at some point hope to get of my but-tocks and learn it.

I guess the main reason most of staffs get bent is I tend to practice by busking on concrete in the middle of town, and love doing high throws and super-fast moves like my two handed figure-8 and BTB pinwheels.

I tend to do a round-robin type show from anywhere between 2-4 hours, and its almost inevitable that there will be several drops from the high throws and the fast moves which usually bend the aluminium. Probably doing it for that long at a time also heats it up and makes it more liekly to bend, I don't know about that side of it though.

Does that help?


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[Nx?]
[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both
Member Since: 5th Nov 2001
Total posts: 3749
Posted:yo,

yeah, Though I still have a few questions...

1: why do fast figure eight with two hands when it looks nicer (and you can go as fast) when you do a kinda three beat weave thing witha staff? (I like the look of the arms tangling and untangling before the auidence can figure out whats going on.)

2: Sorry Mr C but its a scottish thing, Charles just dosnt sound right, I automatically turn it into charlie, just be thankfull I dont call ya 'chuckles'. (not a question I know but thease things always look better in three's)

3: how does the busking go? Im just starting with it and id like to know if you do one man shows, or with musicians, do you do a lot of banter? do you make good money? maybe another thread....

yes, another thread! <hurries off cackling and looking for the 'new topic' button.>

Love

N

[ 01 August 2002, 11:08: Message edited by: Nix? ]


This is a post by tom, all spelling is deleberate
-><- Kallisti

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bender
still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Member Since: 14th Nov 2001
Total posts: 6979
Posted:quote:Originally posted by Nix?:
I thought this tread was going to be about making 3 section staffs, oh well. If there are any suggestions (preferably with lightweight, non-leathal material) that'd be nice, or I could start a new thread I suppose...i feel like a fool now - I've just constructed a three section staff outta hardwood (ouchy, son of hurty), and was thinking to myself that i should be taking photos of the construction process. but i thought, nah no-one's gunna care....
*sobs*


Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

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[Nx?]
[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both
Member Since: 5th Nov 2001
Total posts: 3749
Posted:Doh!

<kisses Bender upside the cranium with 'casuality', big bad stick>


This is a post by tom, all spelling is deleberate
-><- Kallisti

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FireNix
FireNix

old hand
Location: India/Bristol
Member Since: 4th Apr 2001
Total posts: 904
Posted:heh guys
ive just bought some telescopic staff that sound very similsr to the ones descibed towards the begining of the thread.
both ends go into the centre section for transportation, they extend to 1.3 and 1.5m. the bushes at the ends and internal ones stop wobble.
i find them well easy to transport and easy to use, really good for throws and no bending upon impact!!


Feel the Flame
Phirenix

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DeepSoulSheep
DeepSoulSheep

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Berlin
Member Since: 25th Sep 2002
Total posts: 2617
Posted:Ok.
I really want to create a 3 sectioned wooden staff. I really want it to be made of wood. I really like the look of this fighting stick I saw in a matial arts shop for 20 euros.

I was thinking along similar lines as having the threaded dowel thing inside the wood. The only difference I was thinking was to chisel out a hexagonic shaped hole in the wood and glue loads of bolts stacked on top of each other in the hole that the threaded dowel sould screw into.

Does anybody think this could work? Does anyone else have any ideas for a wooden 3 piece stick? Surely if the dowels thick and long enough it should be good. I might even get a capenter to do it if it's looking like it could be precision stuff...
ubbidea


I live in a world of infinite possibilities.

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GraY
member

Member Since: 20th Mar 2004
Total posts: 10
Posted:Here's what i've learned about staff making: simplicity is the rule. Ish gets too complicated, then this little piece disappears while your at a party and so on.

I'm not sure where to get em, but there exists somewhere a plastic tube. On each end there is a threaded ring that screws down making the end of the tube smaller. Use that as a sleeve to connect the two ends. Find that and your problem is solved, you can then use whatever wood you want.


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adamrice
adamrice

poo-bah
Location: Austin TX USA
Member Since: 19th Dec 2000
Total posts: 1015
Posted:DSS--I can't remember where I saw it (on these boards...somewhere else...) but I don't think that what you propose will hold up. I'm convinced that a wooden staff will need to have some kind of steel external sleeve at the joint/s as a reinforcement. Threaded rod embedded in the shaft just won't have enough strength to resist getting bent from drops and the like.

Also, rather than trying to chisel out a hex-shaped channel and dropping a bunch of nuts in that, there are specialized fixtures that do exactly what you have in mind.


Laugh while you can, monkey-boy

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Big Andy
member
Location: Dallas, Tx
Member Since: 1st Apr 2003
Total posts: 186
Posted:Quote:
DSS--I can't remember where I saw it (on these boards...somewhere else...) but I don't think that what you propose will hold up. I'm convinced that a wooden staff will need to have some kind of steel external sleeve at the joint/s as a reinforcement. Threaded rod embedded in the shaft just won't have enough strength to resist getting bent from drops and the like.

Also, rather than trying to chisel out a hex-shaped channel and dropping a bunch of nuts in that, there are specialized fixtures that do exactly what you have in mind.


My idea was to use metal sleeves as you suggest. The center handle section would be wood with whatever kind of grip tape, then about halfway to each end, there would be the joints. I figured it would be relatively easy to make a smooth joint using the metal sleeve method (depending on your power tool inventory). Use sleeves that have the same outer diameter as your staff (e.g. 1" OD tubing for a 1" thick staff). I figure maybe an 8" long tube (~18cm), so that there's about 4" of solid wood inside the tube. With the right tools, one could machine the ends of the handle and wicks down to the exact inner diameter of the metal sleeve. Such that there is 4" inside the tube, snugly fit, and butted up against the other section of the staff.

Here's where I'm not sure what to do next. My instinct was to just drive some screws through the whole assembly, so that theres 4 screws holding each joint together. I think it would be really cool to have a totally blind/smooth joint, though.

Perhaps a better way would be your idea, Adam, with some sizeable inserts and threaded rod connecting them, then the sleeve would simply reinforce the joint. I would worry about that twisting apart though, without anything to keep it from unscrewing. That shouldn't be difficult to overcome, though. A tiny litle wood screw through the sleeve could keep any twisting from happening, or perhaps some squishy rubber between the 2 wooden butts inside the sleeve, would that have potential to keep it from screwing apart?

I dunno, but there defnately needs to be a commercially available 3 piece wooden staff. I fyou come up with a good design, Adam, I know at least 3 people who will buy one from you, lol.


"We can't stop here! This is bat country!"

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We'll treat you right, unless you're black or gay, or Cherokeeeeee!!"

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