Band Director Wand

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Forum topic by MrsN posted 10-27-2009 03:56 PM 5321 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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987 posts in 3760 days

10-27-2009 03:56 PM

I have been asked to make a band director’s wand, I am not sure of the exact name it might be a baton or something else.
Can any of you give me any advise on the process?
I have done some turning but mostly thick things, this would be much thinner then I have turned. Is there a way to keep the piece strong?
Any advise would be appreciated. Thanks

9 replies so far

View tbone's profile


276 posts in 3919 days

#1 posted 10-27-2009 06:52 PM
This might give you a few ideas. It looks like the baton itself is separate from the handle.

-- Kinky Friedman: "The first thing I'll do if I'm elected is demand a recount."

View a1Jim's profile


117416 posts in 3811 days

#2 posted 10-27-2009 07:04 PM

You can turn a baton but you need strong wood to start and a light touch. Make sure the lathe is at a very slow speed and that you use a face shield and protective clothing because it can break and throw pieces of wood at you.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View interpim's profile


1170 posts in 3693 days

#3 posted 10-27-2009 07:24 PM

I turned a wand for my son recently that I would assume is about the same length as a director’s wand. He is into the roleplaying like Harry Potter though, so it’s an entirely different approach. I used black palm, and the shaft itself is about 3/8 in diameter with the handle more around 5/8 or so.

-- San Diego, CA

View rustedknuckles's profile


160 posts in 3986 days

#4 posted 10-27-2009 07:34 PM

Interesting web site, I had no idea some one could make a living on such an esoteric item, but I digress. I found an old directors baton in the house I bought a few years ago, it doesn’t look a bit like the ones on the web site but it is stamped with a makers mark. it is not turned either, it appears to have been shaped by hand, this might be a safer route than trying to turn something so thin.

-- Dave- New Brunswick

View LesB's profile (online now)


1909 posts in 3677 days

#5 posted 10-27-2009 07:57 PM

Curious subject.
I looked at tbone’s web site suggestion and it appears that only the handle is normally made of turned wood. The shaft for most the quality batons was fiberglass. I bet suitable shafts can be acquired from some place like Cabela’s who sells fishing rod making components. I would stay away from the “graphite” shafts because they can be brittle and break when hit against a hard edge, like the conductors stand. I know because I have broken a couple of graphite fly fishing rods that way.
It looks like getting a good balance between the shaft and the handle is the trick and might require adding some weight to the shaft. The balance point seems to be right at the joint between the handle and shaft.

-- Les B, Oregon

View HeirloomWoodworking's profile


238 posts in 3974 days

#6 posted 10-27-2009 09:37 PM


Coincidentetly, my brother is the Director of Sales and Marketing for “Premier Batons”. Whio deal exclusively in hand made conductor’s batons.

According to him, their batons all feature a fiberglass blank, with a variety of woods availalble for the handles. If you are interested in hand making your own baton, perhaps you could contact them and buy just the blank, and attach your own turned handle (and custom display case?)

Good Luck

-- Trevor Premer Head Termite and Servant to the Queen - Heirloom Woodworking

View Hix's profile


161 posts in 3512 days

#7 posted 10-28-2009 04:29 AM

Here is another website for you.

I seem to remember seeing a fiberglass shaft part on ebay at one time.

-- ---call me---- Mark

View KayBee's profile


1083 posts in 3480 days

#8 posted 10-28-2009 06:56 AM

Is the baton going to used at all, or just for presentation/display? If it’s going to be used, I think you really need a fiberglass shaft. I say this because all the directors I’ve ever had, and my kids directors, bang their baton against the edge of the stand. Kind of like a metronome, sometimes just plain old mad, but they all do it. Don’t think a wooden shaft will hold up to that abuse.

-- Karen - a little bit of stupid goes a long way

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 3520 days

#9 posted 10-28-2009 10:51 PM

My band director used to throw his baton at us (and of course we did not deserve it). Please don’t make it too sharp!


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