Demountable Contact Staff With Fire/led-heads




Introduction: Demountable Contact Staff With Fire/led-heads

About: i'm 35. With 23, i started with a stage in taylorship, did sum time-work, changed to saddleryuntil now, worked in a middle-age-onlineshop. Three years ago, i started mailing; a major part of my friends are jug…

This is the first staff that i made, say a prototype and i'm thinking about making other demountable staffs with other closure systems and from other metals.

This one is made from aluminium, so it's very light, but as aluminium is quite brittle, it's not very durable and shock proof. I have to say that my prototype is already broken after four weeks. So, if you do this ible, i would suggest that you use tube-parts with possibly not more holes than needed as this is where the parts tend to break away and maybe not play it on concrete grounds and streets or make it from other metals.

Basically i'm willing to rebuild this staff from zinc plate tube, but i can't find any suppliers; i bought some stainless steel tubes yesterday, but that stuff is very heavy and probably not a good choice at all.

Step 1: Tools / Materials


Drill rig

Drills: Metal: 8,5mm, 6mm, 3mm; Wood: 8mm, 14mm, Saw-drill: 36mm (there were two sets in the store with different sizes of saws, make sure to buy one that really cuts deep into the wood)


metal saw

saw gauge

grinder bench

metal file



soldering iron + solder


bench vice (doesn't have to be a big one)

Tongs (these tools look weird, but they're really cool stuff: they got a screw to adjust the width of the pliers mouth and two levers, one for closing and one for opening the mouth; these pliers are mainly used to fasten metal plates onto each other, i use them to grip the threaded bar and screw it into the crutch-pipe without cutting into my hands)

Optional: Awl with 5mm thickness; you can often get these on flea-markets or ebay - otherwise get a thick nail and a hammer


1 or 2 Pairs of aluminium crutches (1 pair for each pair of heads)

Block of wood with a thickness of about 6cm

2x Aluminium pipes of ~18cm lenght and INNER diameter 34mm

1x M14 threaded bar

32x screws of less than 10mm length (mine: 2,9x9,5mm)

4x M5 screws (mine are counter-sunk head screws to sink into surface)

4x self-securing M5 screw nuts

4x self-securing M14 screw nuts

transparent adhesive tape

cloth tape

tennis grip band

2x 50cm Kevlar-band (mine is 8cm width)

2x ~50cm flexible adhesive LED-stripe

2x 9V batteries

2x plugs for batteries

2x pieces of foam plastic ~30cm x 3cm

2x pieces of flexible leather (split leather/porc leather is the cheapest) 8x8cm

glue (contact glue; leather-glue)

Step 2: Middle Bar

Take the crutch, remove all parts from the upper pipe. The lower end has several holes. The first one is about 5cm from the end and distance between holes is 2,5cm. Note that holes are always measured from the middle of the hole.

Use your drill rig with the 8,5mm-drill to pull 4 holes to the other end of this pipe with the same measurements.

Take the tennis grip band and coil it around the pipe. My band is about 95cm length, long enough to wrap the whole area between the forth holes of this pipe. Keep the band at tension while wrapping to make sure it sticks tightly to the pipe. Use some cloth tape to attach the very last end of the band. Eventually you'll have to cut a hole through it, if you have to paste over a hole. Mark the middle with some different colored tape.

Step 3: Fire Heads

First grab the two of the lower ends of the crutches - the ones with the knob.

At best take out the knob, before continuing.

Now cut about 10-15cms off your threaded bar, using the metal saw and put it/screw it into the end witch is far from the know. This can be done by spanning the crutch pipe vertically into the vice and clamping the tongs onto the threaded bar. For the left-over part take a hammer to punch it in.

Now use the drill rig to drill 2 holes through this end to later attach the kevlar using screws. (i pre-drilled the pipe with the 8,5mm-drill and the bar with M6 drill)

Then stick the know-ends into the middle bar, check for optimal total length and mark the new holes for the knobs. Drill the holes using the 8,5mm-drill and cut off the end of the pipe several cms before the hole, if the ends would be too long to put them both into the middle bar.

Now twist the kevlar around the ends, take your awl, aim and push it through the kevlar and pipe (or drive a nail through it using a hammer - if it's too hard work, start with a thin nail and continue enlarging the hole with nails of different thicknesses)

Half a meter coiled around the crutch is about 5cms. You may will use screw nuts to counter the screws, so you will need screws that are longer than 5cms. Me instead wanted to use counterbolts, but i didn't get them fit into the kevlar, so i only screwed the screws into the kevlar without countering them (probably not the best solution). For easier gettin the screws punched through the kevlar, you can spike the ends using the grinding bench.

Step 4: LED-Heads

This is the biggest and most difficult part.

Take the threaded bar and cut off two pieces of about 18-20 cms. I used a clamp to attach the bar to my table. Doing so, make sure that the vertical part of the clamp touches the bar. This will keep the bar from rolling away and make things easier to fasten it onto the table.

Attach one M14-screw nut to the end of the bar. You can use the bench vice and the tongs to do so.

Take the wood block and screw two holes with the 8mm-wood-drill through the whole thickness of the block (the center drill of the saw drill normally has 8mm). Then get the saw-drill into the drill rig and cut out two round pieces. You'll have to cut from both sides of the block as the saw is not deep/broad enough to cut through the whole block. The saw blades come by 32 and 36mms, but no 34mm - if you get a 34mm anyways, take it instead of 36; you need 34mms as the crutch feet-ends that later-on use as pipe-ends fit tightly into 34mm-pipes.

Now you have to use the grinding bench to grind these round wood parts of a outer diameter of 36mm to 34mm.This is a quite dusty work. If you're not a dirty punk like me, don't do it in your room.

After grinding the outer diameter, you'll have to drill the inner diameter of the wood, so span it into your drill rig using the M14-drill. To make sure, it's centered you can pre-drill the surface to see if it's in equal distance to the hole.

Stick the wood-pipes onto the bar and fasten it with the second screw nut.

Put the other end of the bar into the crutch-pipe and fasten it with two screws: drill two 5mm-holes right through pipe and bar, use the 8,5mm-drill (or any other bigger than 5mm) to grind a phase into the pipe-holes, now you can sink the counter-sunk screws into the pipes surface and fasten with M5 self-securing screw nuts. Recommended that you shorten the screws to the right length, you can do that by using a metal saw plus bench vice (don't clamp the head).

Now you'll have to find out how long your aluminium pipe will be that you want to wrap over the wood and use it as battery-holder and surface for the leds. Put a battery, the crutch feet-end and the ready-made bar-wood-piece in line with little space between the parts and measure from the wood to the whole conic socket of the rubber. In my case, it was about 18cms in total. Cut the pipe using the metal saw and the saw gauge, then grind down the sharp ends.

My wood-pipe is 6cms length. Therefore i cut 4x2 holes into the aluminium pipe, 2 and 4 cms from the end using the 3mm-drill: I centered the pipe in the drill rig and drill right through the whole pipe, then measured the distance between to opposite holes, marked at the half and drilled holes through again; makes it 2x4 holes.

Wrap the the pipe over the wood and attach it with the 32 (16 each head) tiny screws.

2cms from the other (open) end drill a hole for the cables (i used the M6-drill), file the hole as you want things smooth to not cut any cables by sharp edges.

Get your led stripe. You have to cut off some of the silicon from the ends of the led-stripes. You can check yt to know howto do that. In fact, you'll have to cut near the first led, but have to avoid to cut off the stripe, otherwise you can't solder the cables to the stripes: I suggest to not cut unto the very stripe, but to cut into the silicone and try to tear it away from the rest. (I did so, after cocking the first stripe)

Run the ends of the cable through this hole, heat up both , the cable and the stripe, then put solder onto it: if metal parts are not equally heated up, solder does not stick to both to connect.

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    8 years ago on Introduction

    I bet that's quite a show in the dark. (When the aluminum rod isn't broken, that is.)


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    yeah, it is quite a show. But as aluminium breaks away easily, i tried it with steel, but that's too heavy. I guess the best material for such a project would be zinc coated steel-pipes with a thickness of 0,5cm, but those are hard to find; i found some curtain holders that might match. But actually i'm thinking about alu again: i just can't make staffs that are demountable. All other jugglers around here use alu, too, and it works as long as you don't drill holes into it, say they only drill holes to attach the kevlar.
    Yet i'm thinking about making something new. I wanna try out, if i can use the stack-effect using pipes around the kevlar heads and holes in the section below the heads. Then, by swinging the staff, air should flow through the holes along the pipes and tear the flames out of the open ends, but it's still theory and the problem will be to make it possible to maybe demount the pipes to dip the heads into oil.