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Here's a pushpole that can be built from some scrap lumber and an 8 foot closet rod. Yeah, I know, you can just put one of those metal duckbills on the end of a pole and be done with it. There are two problems with that: 1. The duckbill is noisy. If you're trying to sneak up on your quarry, you'll spook them with a duckbill. 2. The duckbill will rust. If you get a year out of one in saltwater, you're doing good.

I've found that I like the 1 1/4" 8 foot closet rods the best. I've built poles with the 1 1/2" rods, and they're heavy. The 1 1/4" rods are strong enough.

O.K., now lets look at the above diagram. It's pretty self explanatory. The pushpole is made from 6 pieces, two wings cut from 1x4 pressure treated fir, a small plug cut from a 1x4, two triangles of 1/2" pressure treated fir (cut the tip off the top of the triangle so you have a line about 1/8" wider than the pole), and the pole itself. The lower 5 1/2" or so (these measurements don't have to be carved in stone) of the pole is made into a cuboid shape, all the sides are flat. The cubed end of the pole needs to be 3/4" wide or less, so the two wings and the end of the pole can be covered on both sides by the plywood triangles. Some details not mentioned in the diagram: 1. The most forward point of the wings is cut off, so there's a about a 1/8" to 1/4" flat spot. 2. The plug (cut from 1x lumber) is about 1/2" wide, 1" long on top, 2" long on the bottom. That's if you make your wings the same angle as I did. Don't ask me what the angle is. I'm guessing the angle between the wings at the bottom of the pole is about 60 degrees, because it looks like an isosceles triange. 3. You should make the wings and square off the pole first, then make the triangular braces. Lay the pole and the wings together over a piece of the plywood ,and then trace the borders of the wings out on the plywood to figure out the dimensions of the braces. You need to run the lower edge of the braces about 1/2" below the bottom of the pole. Cut about 1/4" outside the wing border when cutting your braces, making them a little wider than you really need. Later, you'll sand the braces even and create a smooth, curved edge with the wings.

Here's what it looks like assembled in real life, before sanding, putty (I use Bondo) and painting. By the way, I don't use Gorilla glue too much anymore as I've found it gets brittle with age. I use "Premium Urethane Construction Adhesive". You can use Gorilla glue or any waterproof glue, however. None of my poles made with Gorilla glue have failed due to the glue. They fail due to the pole, usually due to misuse of the pole, like using it for an anchor. I think it is important to use 1" stainless steel wood screws and not galvanized. Galvanized will rust. What I do is apply some glue to one brace, spreading it evenly, then lay it over the pole, and attach with 2 screws. The flip the pole over, put some glue on the side of the wings that will touch the pole, lay the wings on top of the brace in place, and attach with a screw into each wing screwing them to the brace. Then put glue on the other brace, slap it into place and put 2 screws into each wing and 2 into the pole. Then flip it over, screw the brace on the other side to each wing, 2 screws each. Then coat the plug with some glue, slide it in, clamp the assembly and let the glue cure.

Now all you have to do is sand the edges of the braces at an angle down to the edge of the wings, and at the top of the brace even with the pole. You need to sand the wings even with the pole, so it looks like one smooth piece. I won't come out quite perfect. After you do this, a all you need to do is paint it. However, I like my poles to look nice and smooth, so I take a knife, cut off all the excess glue, and fill the cracks with Bondo auto body filler. I always have some around and it doesn't take much. It's not necessary to do this. It's just a pushpole, anyway. Now if this pushpole is for a Kara Hummer by any chance, take a tape measure and measuring from the bottom of the wings, measure up the pole to 96 1/2", and cut the pole off there. The pole will now fit comfortably inside the Kara.

This is what it looks like finished. Have fun building your pushpole.

Legal Disclaimer: This website is intended for entertainment purposes only. The author is not an engineer or professional designer. Many of the methods used building these poles are untested. It is not recommended that anyone follow the example on this website to construct a pole or anything else for that matter. If you do use any of these methods you, your family, friends, and anyone else you can think of could be hurt, drowned, maimed, exposed to toxic chemicals know to the State of California to cause cancer, or otherwise be killed due to the faulty construction or dangerous construction methods.


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