This short video clip is for anyone who may be curious about how we craft our walking sticks. From cutting saplings to putting the finishing touches on our sticks, this video is essentially a short, entertaining, and informative walk through of our process. Hope you all enjoy!
… In 10 Easy Steps
This is a “mail bag” question that we get all the time. The good news is, to make a basic walking stick by hand is not really a big deal. A monkey could do it.
What you’ll need:
As far as crafting the walking stick, here’s the most simple and direct method:
1) First off you’ll want to pick a nice piece of wood, preferably a straight sapling that’s roughly 1.2″ in diameter at the grip.
2) Cut the sapling to your preferred size. At this point, you should also cut off any twigs and protrusions.
3) Set the sapling aside for several months to make sure it’s nice and dry. If you live in a hot climate, the sapling will dry out a lot faster. (If you’re working with “wet” wood, there’s a chance that the stick will bow at some point, especially if it’s leaned against a wall.) If you happen to have access to a kiln, you can dry the sapling much faster.
4) If the bark is flaky or too thick, use the more coarse 80 grit sandpaper to gently sand the shaft by hand, working in an up and down motion.
5) Use 80 grit sandpaper to shape the top of the walking stick. If you’re going for the graceful, Brazos-Walking-Sticks-esque look, you’ll need to put quite a bit of work into this part in order to get it nice and rounded. 🙂
6) After the walking stick is sanded with 80 grit, finish it off with 220 grit. The 220 is a finer sandpaper and will give the stick a nice, finished, smooth feel.
7) At this point, clean the walking stick, making sure that all of the dust from the sanding process is removed. You can use a damp cloth, but make sure the walking stick is completely dry before proceeding to the next step.
8) Gently spray the walking stick with a clear lacquer. You can buy a can of clear lacquer at any hardware store. When spraying lacquer, the key is to give it a nice, smooth, sweeping motion, while not staying stuck on any one area (or else the lacquer will build up in that one area).
9) OPTIONAL: Drill a 3/8″ hole approximately 4″ from the top of the stick. Insert a leather strap or string.
10) Insert your rubber ferrule on the end of your walking stick and then enjoy your creation!
Just don’t try and sell more of these than we do. 🙂
A few weeks ago we received an email from a customer with a couple of photos of one of our walking sticks being used by a wounded warrior.
With the customer’s permission, we opted to showcase these photos on our Facebook page and here on our blog. The beautiful thing about this story is the generosity of our customer, who donated the stick to the wounded warrior and then promptly snapped the photos.
We appreciate and encourage this type of feedback, as it’s always a good thing to see our handcrafted, Made In USA walking sticks and canes being used, shared, and relied upon. That’s why we do what we do.
… about our rubber tips.
Those little rubber tips that go on the end of walking sticks are called various things around here: stoppers, tips, ferrules, end caps, et cetera. (Technically we call them “rubber ferrules,” but most commonly we call them “stoppers”.)
Those multi-named little pieces of rubber come standard on all of our finely crafted walking sticks and canes. They’re not crafted from some El Cheapo rubber either; rather, the quality of the rubber is so high that the stoppers actually smell like tires (put your nose up to one and see what we’re sayin’).
Generally speaking, rubber ferrules are made with rubber and clay. Your typical cut-rate, Dollar Store style stoppers usually have more clay than rubber, thus they wear out quickly. Our high quality rubber ferrules on the other hand are built to last, for months and months (depending on frequency of use).
What’s more, our ferrules are reinforced with a steel washer, so they can take the day-to-day pounding and abuse that our most ardent hikers and cane enthusiasts like to put on a stick.
All of our walking sticks and canes come with a standard rubber ferrule, but now you know that there isn’t anything substandard about that piece of high quality rubber that’s helping you grip the ground.
Need a replacement and want to know how to size one? Here’s the information from our website:
To size a ferrule correctly you’ll need to measure the exact diameter of the bottom of your walking stick or walking cane. The size of the stick diameter should correspond roughly to the size of the ferrule you will need. Keep in mind, these rubber tips are somewhat pliable (a good thing!), so if the ferrule opening is slightly smaller than the diameter of the bottom of your cane or stick, you’ll be just fine — it’ll stretch to accommodate the difference. It’s better to get a slightly smaller ferrule for your needs, than a slightly larger one.
– Premium quality rubber tip for walking sticks and walking canes
– .875″ hole diamater
– FREE SHIPPING ON THIS ITEM
All rubber isn’t created equally. Most drug store, discount rubber tips (ferrules) are made with an excess of clay mixed with rubber, the result is a cheap cane/stick tip that will wear out within a couple of weeks of extensive use.
Our premium rubber ferrules are just that, premium. The high quality rubber used to make our walking stick ferrules will last for months under normal use, and even years if used sporadically. If used for step by step support, you can expect our premium ferrules to last at least two to three months, but “mileage” will vary depending on walking conditions.
Our rubber ferrules have a wide grip, allowing more of the ground to be grasped while you’re walking, thus offering superior support. Furthermore, our ferrules all have a metal washer inside, thus offering even more support and stability which will, in turn, allow the ferrule to last longer. Low quality ferrules do not have metal washers inside of them.
Best of all, our premium rubber ferrules come standard on all of our walking sticks (unless an upgraded spike option is chosen).
Brazos Walking Sticks are sold all over America, from small “mom and pop” storefronts to large retail sporting goods venues like Academy Sports + Outdoors. Our retail relationships are what allow us to be all over America with our handcrafted, Made In USA walking sticks and canes. We really appreciate all of our retailers!
Here’s a recent communication that went out to all of our retailers. If you own a business that you think would be a perfect fit as a Brazos Walking Sticks retail location, please give us a call at 1.800.581.4352, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank You for being a special part of the Brazos Walking Sticks family! As a valued retailer, we want to tell you that we appreciate all that you do. We also want you to know that we’re here for you, and we’d like you to meet your sales reps, Michael and Sherry Lane.
The Lanes have been the cornerstone of our sales team for nearly 7 years. So whether you’re a new customer or have been selling our handcrafted walking sticks and canes for years, Michael and Sherry have the knowledge and expertise to help you succeed.
Give them a call or shoot them an email. With over 100 designs, styles, and wood choices, Brazos Walking Sticks has something for every retail location and customer demographic.
A+, we love this review!
One of our faithful customers took a few minutes to make this gracious review of our Root Cane.
He even highlighted our tags, which provide information about the wood, and even give a brief stick maker bio and photo on the back.
We make a point to communicate with customers so that they can make an informed choice when buying their handcrafted, American-made walking stick or walking cane. We take our work very seriously, and thoroughly appreciate all of the feedback we get.
Brazos Walking Sticks offers free shipping in the continental USA for all of our walking sticks and walking canes. It’s not just free pokey shipping, it’s free UPS ground shipping!
Simply put, Free Shipping has always been about our customers. We realize that in these challenging economic times, a simple gesture like Free Shipping can really go along way with cash-strapped customers.
So that’s its. Consider Free Shipping is our way of saying “Thank You!” for supporting us as we strive to provide American-crafted walking sticks and canes to all those who may need a walking aid!
Brazos Walking Sticks has thousands of retailers all across the fruited plain. A common customer request is, “Where can I find a store in my area?”
The waiting is over! Thanks to the hard work of our IT professionals, we now have a handy dandy map. Feel free to peruse it to find a store that sells Brazos Walking Sticks near you!
But, of course, for a full selection of our products, nothing beats shopping on our website. You might even find a coupon if you check out our Twitter and Facebook feeds.
Our company’s namesake—Brazos Walking Sticks—is derived from our beloved river: the Brazos River.
Early Spanish explorers called our river Rio de los Brazos de Dios — The River of the Arms of God. Running through much of northern and central Texas, the river’s waters flow gently to the Gulf of Mexico, leaving several life-giving lakes in its wake.
Our founding parent company was called Brazos Oaks—a name referring to the majestic oak trees that line the river valley in central Texas. When the walking stick business was conceived—nearly two decades ago—the name Brazos Oaks Walking Sticks was adopted. Soon that moniker gave way to the more succinct Brazos Walking Sticks. Like the river itself, each name iteration flowed naturally from its source.
Like the Lone Star State in which it exists, the Brazos River is a symbol of peace, provision, and ingenuity. So walk proudly Brazos Stick owners: the handcrafted walking stick or cane you hold is created and buttressed by a great tradition—a tradition as timeless as the river it’s named after.
1. Stability. Whether you’re trekking through arduous trails or simply walking down your favorite neighborhood street, a walking stick offers support and stability with every step. Three legs are always better than two!
2. Security. The mere presence of a walking stick can often times be enough to ward off an unsavory dog or other dubious creatures.
3. Style. We’ve got dozens upon dozens of styles and designs. When you walk or hike with one of our walking sticks, you’re the epitome of walking stick fashion. 🙂
We offer free cane sizing. Simply let us know, in the comments section of checkout, what length you would like us to size your cane to. We can not size up, but we can size virtually anything down with no problem.
This will take less than two minutes of your time. And it’s well worth watching.
A common question that we get around here is: How do I use a walking cane? You’d think the answer would be intuitive, but it’s not! Generally speaking, walking canes are used for basic, step-by-step support. They’re not designed to be used for heavy, full-body support, but they do offer balance and stability for those with minor leg problems.
WikiHow has a good article explaining the proper use and sizing of canes. It’s worth a read.
For years we had customers asking for a walking stick that could also serve as a walking cane, a sort of dual purpose type thing. So a couple of years ago we created the Dual Purpose Staff!
This walking cane is really a walking stick … or is it a walking stick that is really a walking cane? Not sure. But, but it really comes in handy for those who like the step by step support of a cane with the versatility of a walking stick. It also comes in handy for those who need a wee bit of help getting up from a sitting position.
The staff is crafted from oak and is both surprisingly lightweight and extremely strong.
Go buy yours now! Like all of our products, they make fantastic gifts and they are completely Made In USA!
No matter the weather or time of year, a good, handcrafted, Made-In-USA walking stick is always a faithful companion … and quite the conversation starter as well!
Many of our faithful customers ask us for business cards to pass out when they’re on their trails, because people always want to know: “Where did you get that stick?!” Alas, we are now offering an easy way to refer people to Brazos Walking Sticks, so even strangers on the street can know where you buy your handcrafted walking sticks.
Over the next several months we’ll be integrating a stylish leather tag on all of our walking sticks. The tag features genuine leather and our iconic, easy-to-recognize logo. So next time someone asks you where you purchased your walking stick, proudly show them your Brazos Walking Stick leather tag!
Many of our employees live an agrarian lifestyle here in beautiful Central Texas. Our neighbors are not only people, but cows, sheep, coyotes — all manner of animals you’d see in and around a farm.
Rest assured, when you support Brazos Walking Sticks you’re supporting American families and American jobs … and a few cows.
In an effort to better serve our wonderful customers, we are now offering 100% free shipping on everything we sell. This isn’t pokey “super saver” shipping, but speedy UPS Ground shipping — completely and absolutely free.
Try it out now with our best-selling stick of all time (or any other stick or cane of your choice).
I am convinced that the quality of the product purchased [a Brazos Walking Stick] is a direct result of the people behind it.
I have no physical limitations and am a former athlete. After 12 years of searching for the perfect Walking Stick (strait as an arrow, tall, thick, and strong) and refusing all imitators, I finally found the perfect staff yesterday! Standing straight and proud in a Brazos Bin was a gorgeous 55″ Free Form Twisted Sweet Gum Staff fitting my hand perfectly.
Following my purchase and exiting the retail store, a woman entering said to me, “Now, that is a nice stick!”
Thank you for your pursuit of excellence and meeting my need…
PROVIDENCE WORKING CANINES
Most of us here at Brazos Walking Sticks enjoy the country life. We live out in the country. Work out in the country. Play out in the country. You name it — it’s just part of our cultural DNA. (The photo below was shot just a mile or so from our facility, by Ben Owen Photography.)
Our roots in country life compliment and parallel our roots in fine craftsmanship. Whether we’re on our knees in our gardens, out tending to our livestock, or in our shops making walking sticks, it’s all part of a unique, fading piece of Americana — and it’s part of the American experience that we still cherish dearly.
So Brazos Walking Sticks are as American as apple pie. Our country boys make each piece by hand, careful to select only the finest materials. When you feel one of our walking sticks in your hand you’ll know what we mean when we talk about “the quality of American craftsmanship.”
Getting complimentary emails and letters from customers never gets old. It’s nice to know that we make products that last for years, and can be handed down from generation to generation.
Several years ago at Christmas time a nephew of mine gave a gift to me: one of your great Brazos Walking Sticks (Hickory Twisted 58”). I have always been appreciative of all his choices, especially when it comes to gifts!
The stick has been a great show piece in my office where for the last 28 years since my retirement I have spent many hours each day. Having been twice a survivor of cancer since 2001, I often point out to guests and visitors my numerous walking canes and my favorite Brazos Walking Stick!
Buy your own Twisted Hickory walking stick now!