Introduction: Old Plywood Walking Cane
Welcome to my DIY Walking Cane made out of old or unused plywood sheets. In this tutorial, I'll be showing and explaining step by step how to achieve this and share my experiences trying so.
Things you'll need:
- Plywood sheets
- Belt saw or jigsaw with some skill
- Small, long wooden beam, preferable a contrast colour of your plywood sheets
- Big clamps and heavy weights
- Wood glue
- A (make shift) lathe
- *Optional* Varnish
Step 1: Creating the Wooden Block for Your Handle
I got my inspiration of a plywood block I found catching dust in an old workspace. It was really eye catching as it looked so interesting.
Take your plywood sheet and draw rectangles. We'll stick these together and cut out the walking cane handle out of it, so don't draw to small. I had a 5 layer plywood and glued about 16 rectangles on top of eachother. First, cut out your rectangles with a jigsaw or a belt saw if you have the utilities. Use enough glue on the little panels and place them ontop of eachother. Use wood clamps and heavy weights to improve the strength of the glue. Divide the pressure equally as possible.
When the glue is all cured, cut off the rough edges and sand it a bit. You'll be surprised how smooth you can go.
You'll see the texture on the side is almost the same as the example piece I found, and it looks lovely.
Step 2: Free the Handel
Because my panels from the previous step were kinda wide, I was able to cut it in half in the length, giving me 2 blocks to work with in case I screw up. Draw with your pencil some outlines on it where your handle should be.
Use the belt saw or something to remove the biggest parts. Continue with really rough sandpaper. This will take some time and some dedication removing all the excess wood, but it's worth it.
Step 3: Creating the Pole
To create the pole, we'll use the same technique we used for the handle, but this time, we need to glue it to a solid beam to act as the core of the walking cane. This is necessary, otherwise your pole will flex and break really easily.
I used some oak beams which I made from a bigger piece that I also found, but you can use other wood types aswell. It's mainly the flex that needs to be as low as possible.
Start once again with drawing rectangles, but smaller ones this time (not to small), on your remaining plywood sheets. Do the same you did with the handle and cut it up into smaller pieces again so it will form a square when placing it against your core beam.
Use individual clamps or weights and glue to stick it onto the core beam. Go slow, don't try to glue everything at once. It's important everything has enough pressure.
Step 4: Rounding It
As you can see in the first two pictures, I used a wood lathe and chisels to round it up. But because my glue didn't work out good, and chisels apply a lot of forces onto the individual pieces, some came loose.
So I started over and avoided the chisels. Because I had to start from scratch again for the pole, I added some vertical plywood pieces aswell, so the process would go faster.
I made a make-shift lathe using some nails, screws and a drill.
Make it turn slowly and use sandpaper instead of chisels to round up the pole. It's okay if it's not perfectly cylindrical. It fits in the style.
Step 5: Joining Together
Drill a hole at the bottom of the handle. Not to deep so you don't drill completely through.
Now this is an other work of patience, at the top of the pole, use some rough sand paper to make the first 2-3cm of the pole smaller in diameter. Of course this diameter should fit the hole you made in your handle.
Use some glue and heavy weights to apply pressure. Place something between your weight and your handle. It might damage the handle. Let the glue cure for some time.
Step 6: Finishing Touch
Once again use sandpaper to smooth out the transition of the handle to the pole.
Finish your entire walking cane with some varnish if you please.
And you're done! Add some rubber to the bottom to increase friction with the ground. I left out the rubber and used the stick more as decoration.
Thanks for reading/making! Have fun with your new fancy looking walking cane!