I'm currently making two shafts for two spears, and to do so in January I've cut down two relatively thin hazelnut trees, and kept at about 3 metres length; I don't really need them properly seasoned, but they have several bends which need addressing. To try and straighten them I've tied them tightly against a cement pole the day I cut them down, and I've left them there until today (Monday). I need them mostly straight in about 3 weeks, is there something I can do?

  • Start with a much thicker straight tree (ash or hickory preferred) and quarter it after cutting. – Ecnerwal Apr 24 '17 at 13:27
  • You could try steam bending them, but I don't really think you'll be able to get them totally straight that way... – SaSSafraS1232 Apr 24 '17 at 16:51
  • Heat and bending is the way this is done by the pros — using in making walking sticks and in arrow manufacture. What diameters are you working with here? I'm not sure if the same method works as well with stuff about the thickness of hiking poles which I'm guessing are in the same range as you have there. – Graphus Apr 24 '17 at 19:53

I saw on the woodwrights shop them steam bending a long piece by putting it in some metal ducting and piping a regular tea kettle's steam output into it. The far end got stuffed with a towel loosely. After about 20 minutes they were able to bend an oak bar into a U shape by hand so if you have some straight reference and enough clamps I would think you could straighten a spear shaft in the same way.

  • 2
    if you do this, it's going to take a hell of a lot of trial and error and/or luck to get them perfectly straight. Whenever you bend wood, there's always some elastic springback when you remove the mold. – aaron May 30 '17 at 12:31
  • Agree with @aaron - you'd have to overbend it a bit then hope it springs back straight. "A bit" is a particularly scientific amount, most likely determined by trial and error. – FreeMan Oct 27 '17 at 14:56

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