Parkinsons disease won't keep Tom from walking

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Project by footprints posted 1350 days ago 1460 views 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

An athletic friend developed Parkinson’s disease a few years ago and has resisted using a cane. I thought he might like this walking stick as a more manly option. Just in time for Christmas.

It is 60” long, 1-1/4” square walnut stock with 1/8th” thick yellow heart inserts. The top hand hold portion is described in Lew’s blog on Celtic knot rolling pins. The bottom portion uses the jig shown in photo 4. It produces a 1/8” saw kerf at 45 degrees to the walnut stock. After the initial 1 3/16” deep cut is made, it is slipped over the aluminum spacer bar (which is adjustable) shown in photo 5. This assures even spacing all the way down the stick and locks the stock in safely.

Use plenty of glue for the .120-.123 thick inserts. Plane off excess glue and insert and rotate 180 degrees to get a “falling chain” pattern. Rotate 90 degrees and stagger the distance down the stick to make more complex patterns.

The stick is too long for the lathe so I used a 7/8” quarter round router bit to rough it out and finished with a spokeshave. Finished in shellac and acrylic.

-- Ray, Phoenix, Maryland

9 comments so far

View brunob's profile


2275 posts in 2795 days

#1 posted 1350 days ago

Cool walking stick. Great idea. Your friend will love it

-- Bruce from Central New, if you'll pardon me, I have some sawdust to make.

View lew's profile


9991 posts in 2381 days

#2 posted 1350 days ago

WOW!!! This is GREAT!!!


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View NBeener's profile


4806 posts in 1800 days

#3 posted 1350 days ago

Beautiful work.

Fascinating technique.

Great and thoughtful gift/gesture !

-- -- Neil

View Sodabowski's profile


2002 posts in 1459 days

#4 posted 1350 days ago

However you did this, it’s beautiful, and a very thoughtful gift, as Neil just said.

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View chrisstef's profile


10641 posts in 1632 days

#5 posted 1350 days ago

Very nice gesture, a manly one at that … my father has a very good friend that has been afflicted with this disease as well He has the best saying that i have ever hearde for someone in his condition. Every time i see him i ask” How ya doin Billy?” he always replies with “Doing the very best i can with what very little i have to work with” ... god bless him and his optimism.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View dpow's profile


457 posts in 1470 days

#6 posted 1350 days ago

Tom is fortunate to have a friend like you. Interesting technique. Thanks for sharing.

-- Doug

View mmh's profile


3382 posts in 2348 days

#7 posted 1350 days ago

A very nice gift for someone who needs a walking aide. I’m sure he’ll enjoy using it as it will remind him how much you care. I like using the spoke shave on long pieces, it’s quite relaxing.

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View Loogie's profile


99 posts in 2406 days

#8 posted 1350 days ago

Nice work, Ray! You always have the most interesting projects.

-- Mark

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