Introduction: Multi-Function Walking Stick IV - Grip Strap
Add a hand strap to your walking stick; made from continuous rope rings, to create a clean custom grip without the bulk of a knot.
This is part 4 in the Multi-Function Walking Stick Instructable series.
The Original Multi-Function Walking Stick Instructable series includes the following:
Part 1: Make a three piece walking stick that converts into a Camp Chair.
Part 2: Add copper ends to a staff creating a bottom tip & a storage compartment on top.
Part 3: Add a flaming torch to the top of a staff to light your way
Part 4:Starts here...
It describes how to add a customized hand strap to the Multi-function Walking Stick using a rope winding technique to create a functional grip while improving the overall finished appearance of the staff.
Best of all, it utilizes an attachment feature already present in the Multi-Funcition Walking stick design.
Thus, it can be added or removed instantly without tools.
Step 1: Copper Fitting Joint
Since publishing the first Multi-Function Walking Stick Instructable, I have received a few comments about the gap between the threaded copper fittings.
As seen in the photo, the copper fittings joining the threee sections of the staff have some exposed threads when screwed together.
The threads on the fittings have an increasing diameter taper by design, to ensure that at some point the threads will bottom out. This ensures a tight joint when threaded together however, it means the threads will tighten down and stop turning before the shoulders of the fittings meet.
Its almost as if the plumbers that designed these fittings were more concerned with achieveing a water proof joint without any consideration to how exposed threads would detract from the appearance when used as hiking stick fasteners....Imagine that!
Actually, this is a good thing...
That remaining gap is an opportunity to a add yet another functional feature to the Multi-Function Walking Stick. The gap becomes a fixing point for a hand strap.
Step 2: Hand Strap
A Hand Strap can be fashioned from three strand natural fiber rope using a rope rewinding method to form various sized loops.
To start: The individual strands of a length of rope are removed by carefully unwinding them. A single strand is then rewound onto itself to form a ring (or in this case a series of two connected rings).
The technique is described in more detail in the the following Instructable:
The benefit of this rewinding method is that a custom wound strap has an attractive finished look without the bulk of a knot or splice. Also, the use of rope as opposed to a synthetic strap, maintains the natural materials theme - wood, copper, natural fiber rope.
Step 3: Detent by Design
So up to this point, hours have been spent meticulously machining the copper fittings to ensure there there is an esposed thread gap. (not really, as mentioned earlier, the gap is there by the nature of the the copper fitting's thread design...but you can tell everyone you spent hours just to achieve that attachment feature)
The fitting's gap, and the resulting indentation in the overall diameter of the staff, will be used to secure the hand strap.
What was once was a less than presise looking exposed threaded gap, is now an intended design feature...."ya that's it"....just as it was envisioned all along!
Step 4: The Strap
The finished strap has a small, on-size, loop to fit over the threaded coupling and a larger loop that fits the hand.
By using the Rop Ring rewinding technique there is no knot or bulky splice. It looks like an infinite continuous loop (lemniscate).
Step 5: Installation
The hand strap installs or removes without tools in seconds.
Before screwing the upper section of the Walking Stick together slide the small loop over the threads on the coupling.
When the upper section is screwed on, the once unsightly fixed gap, will keep from crushing the rope loop; while the gap's indentation, will keep the loop from sliding down the staff.
Step 6: Alternate Applications - Staff Hanger
Even if you do not use the strap as a hand grip, it can be used to hang the staff.
Rather than just leaning the staff against a tree when stopping for a break, the loop can be used to hang it from a branch where it is less likely to fall over.
Step 7: Hanging Loop
Likewise, the loop can be used to hang things - when at rest, or on the trail.
Anything with a hook can be clipped or secured to the Walking Stick's loop to keep it off the ground or readily accessable on the trail.
i.e. Water bottle, snack bag, gloves, radio, etc.
Step 8: Shoulder Strap
The same winding tenique can be used to create rings that utalize both the threaded fitting's gap, and the lower chair notch in the wood, to create a self storing shoulder strap.
In this case, the upper ring is sized to remain fixed in the upper joint. (just like the hand strap design)
This loop is part of a length of rope to be used as a shoulder strap.
The lower loop on the same rope is a little larger allowing it to index into both the lower joint and the bottom notch (this notch, show in the third photo, is used for the chair conversion; as described in the first Walking Stick Instructable).
The shoulder rope should be sized such that it is taut when the bottom loop is slid into the lower chair notch. (this is the stored position (shown in the second photo)
When the lower loop is slid up it will index into the lower copper fitting gap. The slack in the rope can then be slung over the shoulder to carry the staff; keeping both hands free.
Note the smaller accessory loop on this shoulder strap design (shown in the second picture); It could have been made as large as the hand loop without affecting the shoulder strap function however this just shows another alternative application.
Step 9: Trim Rings
Plain ring(s) can be used solely as a decorative element to improve the appearance of the exposed threaded gap.
Should you decide not to add a hand grip, a set of single rings can be used as an accent treatment to hide the once exposed threads on the copper fittings.
But why would you want just plain rings when you can have accessory attachment points on your Multi-Function Walking Stick?