Instructables

PVC Hiking Staff

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I bought a hiking staff at Walmart for $12.88 and just loved it.  A hiking staff is helpful going down hills and crossing creeks. A staff is also good to have when encountering unleashed dogs on the path.  I felt that the light weight staff I got at Walmart would not be too helpful in any dog vs man situation. So I came up with a good and sturdy staff using 1" PVC pipe. At least with this pole I can whack a dog good and protect myself. I could also add a camera mount.
 
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Step 1: Materials Needed

Picture of Materials Needed
4 feet of 1 inch diameter schedule 80 PVC pipe.  The thick stuff. (Home Depot)
Two 1" PVC pipe caps (Home Depot)
Nylon cord for handle (Walmart)
Rubber bumper (Hardware Store)
Screw and nut for the rubber bumper.
Optional paint for the pole.

Step 2: Hiking tip on end

Picture of Hiking tip on end
Drill a hole in the center of one of the caps and attach a rubber bumper.  This goes on the bottom end of the staff.  It will help keeping the staff from slipping when crossing creeks and rocks.  The soft rubber will not scratch rocks like the carbide tips do on the commercial staffs. This area has lots of room for experimentation.  The caps are cheap and you can make interchangeable tips for the terrain. You can make one with a pointed bolt for ice or rocks.

Step 3: The Handle

I got some nylon cord at REI for wrapping the handle. You can get the same cord at Walmart for half the cost.  Drill a 1/4 inch hole in the PVC pipe just below the cap. Tie a knot in the cord on the inside of the pipe and wrap tightly along the length for eight inches. Tuck the end under the windings at the end and twist tightly to secure.

Slip a loop of cord for the lanyard in the same hole.  Tie a knot at the end to adjust the lanyard length.

Step 4: Camera Mount

Picture of Camera Mount
Drill and tap a 1/4 -20 hole at the top of the cap for a camera mount. Insert a 1/4-20 bolt in the threaded hole.  You camera will mount here.
Professor_How7 months ago
Nice build, I can see all kinds of mods being possible on this simple but effective platform. Its got my imagination running wild as I love the outdoors and building stuff.
tweaver121 year ago
Another option would be to use paracord instead of nylon cord. Very helpful in survival situations.
botronics (author)  tweaver121 year ago
Its a cheap imitation paracord from Walmart. The REI stuff was way too expensive. I'll probably be sorry I didn't get the real stuff in an emergency survival situation. I've put plenty of miles on this stick and it has held up well. I wouldn't leave home without it.
wolfgang641 year ago
Has anybody thought about the idea that if you seal both ends. this would float quit nicely? And the cord could be helpful to in that situation to.
botronics (author)  wolfgang641 year ago
The end caps fit snug enough for it to float during the short term.
Great job...I like it. Check out backyardbowyer web site for another PVC walking stick that doubles as a blow dart gun.
botronics (author) 4 years ago
I stuffed a mini first aid kit at the end of the staff. Just a shorty ziploc bag with some Curad silver bandaids and benzalkonium chloride towelettes. The ziploc keeps things dry.
firstaid.JPG
I was going to suggest the same thing...use it to store some things inside! Good job!
fretted1 year ago
You can get sched 40 PVC in 1" hmmmmm
Boppylop1 year ago
I'm gonna try this sometime. What we have right now are just broom handles with a sharpened bottom.
l8nite3 years ago
I saw a couple of Halloween prop type staff/canes, at the thrift store,that where really flimsey, but I thought of this "ible" when I saw them and picked up all 5 for $3us.
I had some 1/2 sched40 laying around and now have 3 perfectly usable canes, the longest one at 43" is amazingly sturdy, it handles my 240lbs w/o bowing at all..
botronics (author)  l8nite3 years ago
PVC is very strong stuff! The 1/2 inch makes a lightweight cane. I bet you can find a rubber foot to fit, the kind for regular canes, at the hardware store. Slip in a white led joule thief circuit and you can use it at night on Halloween.
the dollar store sells some really neat led flashlights, one thats supposed to slip over your ear and has a long stalk the led is in, it worked great on the one cane
corey114 years ago
Well, if people are worried about the regidity then what you could do maybe, is add some high density expanding foam to the inside of the staff. Simple and not as heavy as getting 80 sched. Instead!!
botronics (author)  corey114 years ago
I can't see how foam would add any strength. Use that hollow space for stuff. Schedule 40 is plenty strong. I am still using mine every couple weeks for a hike and its holding up very well. I use it more than my Walmart aluminum tube one. Those aluminum tube sticks can get bent easily. A heavy staff out of schedule 80 would get tiresome really quick.
pmooreknife4 years ago
They also make PVC in a thicker grade like Sch 80 pipe. Little more weight, but walls would be 2X the thickness.
botronics (author)  pmooreknife4 years ago
I stand corrected! My staff is made from schedule 40 PVC.  I have only seen two types at Home Depot. Schedule 20 and 40.  This Schedule 80 is thicker and is not too common at home builders stores.  My schedule 40 pipe is strong enough without the extra weight.
botronics (author)  pmooreknife4 years ago
Mine is made of the thick stuff, schedule 80. I've been hiking around in the hills and it has held up well. If you put a Lego rubber tire just below the handle and mount a video cam on the pole, you can hold just below that tire.  Let it balance as you walk about.  The pole will act a a Steadicam for your camera. I've tried it with a Zi8 with good results.
legotire.JPG
l8nite4 years ago
Is the pvc really strong enough to use as a hiking aid? It is a great idea and pretty inexpensive for light duty. I keep a small saw handy for when I see a pile of tree trimmings and have a small collection of sticks from cane to extra long staff size. No Im not a big hiker, I have back problems so a staff comes in handy as a support for just standing as well as a balance aid when walking
meddler l8nite4 years ago
I injured my back in the military. I can sympathize.
botronics (author)  l8nite4 years ago
Plenty strong enough. The hiking pole I got at Walmart probably could be bent in my bare hands. The 1 inch diameter PVC would be hard to break. Use the thick kind that is about 1/8th inch thick. Tried it out at Garin Park on Christmas. Photos at:
http://www.panoramio.com/user/1933804