Simple Mallet mounting style is Straight Sexy.

January 27, 2012

(UPDATED WITH VIDEO 1/27/12)

During my recent trip to WHBPC, I was introduced to this amazing mounting style and I wanted to share it in detail because it’s a little more important than I think most people realize. First off, I want to point out that this mounting style has passed the reliability test, this is totally key. A fine fellow in a “Cheater Mullets” tee from over seas first showed it to me, and as I started looking harder, tons of the folks from overseas were rocking this style. Now the reason that I think that this mounting style is so important is because it kind of single handedly does away with the need for a Pre-fabricated, Injection Molded mallet.

The main benefit of an injection molded or Pre-Fabricated mallet is the ability to swap out heads easily. Eighth Inch has a 1 bolt side system, and if Northern Standard comes to market, they went a step further with a proprietary twist click type system. Both great ideas, but there is a trade off. The injection molded mallets are either brittle, super heavy, or lack any real customizing ability. All the injection molded mallets come in one flavor. But because the pipe everyone has been using for years is extruded, it’s strong and reliable. Also HDPE, UHMW, ABS, and Polycarbonate all have their advantages in different situations. You have real options there, but mounting is either a pain in the ass and permanent, or a deck screw zipped in the side. Nothing clean or sexy. Until now.

What you need: Tapered shaft, 1/4″ drill bit, 1/2″ drill bit, counter sink bit, half round or triangle file, extruded pipe mallet head, 1/4″ long nut, 2.5″ long 1/4″ flat head bolt, screwdriver, drill gun and threaded rod (optional)

One of the important benefits of this system, is there is no need to drill out your shaft. The T-nut system, the big bolt system, the deck screw, and the rod with 2 screws system coming out of chicago all require a hole in the shaft. As you’ll see this is a thing of the past.

Preparing the shaft: first off, you should cut around 4″ or 5″ of the taper end off when using a ski pole, or using a fresh shaft from one of the 3 polo companies that makes tapered shafts. Please note that eighth inch does NOT make tapered shafts, theirs are straight so that is a firm “no dice” on their products. The reason for cutting the tip a bit is so that the long nut can go down far enough that the 2.5″ long bolt can reach. Once you have the tip cut, the final step is to file teeth into the tip of the shaft. Now it’s time to move onto the exuded pipe head.

Preparing the Head: If you have a drill press use it, if not, be careful to make sure that the holes are centered through the head. You want a 1/2″ hole on one end, and a 1/4″ hole on the other side. On the 1/4″ hole, use the counter sink bit and get it cleaned out and ready for the bolt head.

Assembly: Insert the long nut through the top end of the shaft and let it drop down to the bottom. It’s not necessary, but you can get a threaded rod, connect it to the nut and insert the long end first into the shaft, and pull it tight wedging the nut in there. However, I’ve found that this system is so dope it’s not even necessary. Next insert the pole into the head, then insert the bolt and tighten it until the teeth dig into the inside of the head.

This is seriously it. Give it a shot, the nut and bolt can be found for under a dollar at any hardware store.

(update: Now with video goodness!)

Comments

comments

  • adam hite September 17, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    video?

  • adam hite September 17, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    this process looks awesome. definitely gunna try it out. thanks for sharing!

  • matt b September 17, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    i tried that once with just using a threading kit on the inside of the ski pole instead of using the small nut inside. It could have been my mistake of using cellular abs but after a few hits the mallet head would be loose enough to spin around. Maybe this method gives a tighter compression on the mallet head. i may have to try it as well.

    • James September 17, 2011 at 10:53 pm

      I guess the teeth you file into the tip of the shaft grip it as well as the compression from the nut/bolt which helps stop it spinning? Definitely going to give this a shot on my next mallet.

      • James September 17, 2011 at 10:56 pm

        Although in the photo of the shaft being inserted into the head you can’t see the teeth. At first I thought you had to file the teeth into the extension nut.

  • Jinx! September 19, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Sweet and simple! I was worried about installing my double cap St. Cago, but now, all i gotta worry about is 2 holes, no blind drilling on this one!

  • Vlad September 20, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    That is the way I’ve discovered myself.
    Nice to see other people figuring it out too !

  • Kermit September 20, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    I still prefer the 3 screws and a drill bit attachment method.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/20378685@N00/5994341957/

    • smingram September 20, 2011 at 4:57 pm

      haha, good show!

  • Vlad September 21, 2011 at 3:49 am

    Took a second look and think my project differs a bit.
    I cut the threads in aluminum ski-pole directly. Then use a short M8 bolt to hold the mallet head and the pole together.
    The only thing that requires a bit of attention is the upper hole in the mallet-head : the pole is cone-shaped, so, I make the hole slightly smaller than the pole diam. where it shoud sit. Makes a tight fit, makes accidental rotation impossible. I start with a drill, then finish the hole with a round file.
    P.S. – red Loctite (or some other thread-lock) is another good trick.

  • Vlad September 21, 2011 at 3:52 am

    don’t misunderstand :
    Red Loctite is for the bottom screw. That won’t help the pole-pipe contact

  • kxw October 1, 2011 at 12:48 am

    how fucking long do you need your mallet too be? i’ve used this method and also a similar one done the same but only cut two large teeth. worked pretty well, but make sure you use thread lock or the bolt comes loose and the head starts spinning.

  • Vlad October 1, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Ski poles come in different sizes. I use 125cm ones (height 174cm), a bit too long for me.

    P.S. KXW, “Two large teeth”-technique works sweet. I add a thin metal washer (bend it slightly, so that it is the same radius as inside of the pipe) to support the small surface of a pole against the softer mallet head.

  • ddub October 10, 2011 at 11:46 pm

    what advantages does polycarbonate have?

    • smingram October 11, 2011 at 1:15 am

      Polycarb is super super light, and super strong. However it plays like abs in that it grips the ground. But if you are a weight weenie, you should be seeking out polycarb, no question.

  • kremin October 11, 2011 at 1:27 am

    I used to just use screws, few months ago i switched to this ill never go back this is the answer. Ps with the new mke shafts you can tap the bottom of the pole so no need for a nut by far the lightest system

    • smingram October 11, 2011 at 1:32 am

      whoa! that seems like a super important bit of info for the new mke shafts. Can you post a link to a pic of the new mke shafts with that threaded area?

  • Crusher January 25, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Adam – we just made a video about setting one of these up: http://lancasterpolo.com/2012/01/25/bike-polo-mallet-instructional-using-fixcrafts-coupler-system/

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