I have just begun making a pair of Spalding style Indian clubs out of yellowood (Podocarpus latifolius). I expect the clubs to weigh about 3 kg each when finished and completely dry. You can follow my progress here
I have almost completed making a hand carved vintage style Indian club. You can see the progress here
It weighs 6.4 kg at the moment, but I expect the weight to drop to about 5.5 kg as the wood dries. I still need to work on the handle, and fill some cracks that have developed.
I enjoyed using my sturdy shena so much, that I decided to make another shena, optimized for doing wide grip push ups. You can see how it evolved here.
I love organic shapes. This is a good combination of form and function, because the shena is nice to look at, and very comfortable to use as well.
The one piece shena is complete. You can see how it was made on this page. The shena encourages you to try different push up variations. I wondered if it was possible to exercise all of the muscles in the body using just a shena and two 3.7 kg clubs. So for the next month, I will use only these 3 pieces of wood. I will make a video to document my experience.
The cracks in the wood have increased in size. This does not bother me, either from an aesthetic or functional point of view. Many antique clubs have cracks as well, and they swing just fine. The wood is not being used in a load bearing application, so the stresses on the wood are minimal, and I don't expect the clubs to fall apart in use. I won't bother filling the cracks when the clubs are complete. The cracks will give them instant cred! Primitive appeal! The only exception to this will be cracks in the handle area, because here the cracks may pinch my skin and make the clubs uncomfortable to hold and swing.
I spent the morning updating the section on meels. I am making 4 sets of meels, and it appears that all 4 sets will be completed within the same time frame. The reason for this is that I want meels ranging in weight from 2.5 kg to 6.5 kg, and it is difficult knowing what the weights are going to be while making the meels. So I have to keep my options open, and do the final trimming once all 4 sets have been shaped.
There is a large Natal mahogany near our civic centre. It is quite an old tree. Occasionally branches that have been attacked by insects get broken by strong wind and fall down. I found two branches that looked suitable for making clubs, so I brought them home to turn into clubs. Here is the link: More torpedo clubs!
A few weeks ago, I went to the beach and found three pieces of driftwood that I thought could be cut into meel type clubs. I went to the beach yesterday to collect the driftwood, and couldn't find it! The driftwood was completely covered in wind-blown sand! After digging around for a while, I located the driftwood. I had to dig a lot more to lift it out of the sand. I used my trusty bow saw to cut two 750 mm sections from each piece. It was only after the last cut on the red milkwood that I discovered that it had a rotten core. Here is a picture:
This is what the pieces looked like before I removed the bark and the sand. The two logs on the left are plantation grown gum. You can see the marks left by the debarker. It is probably Eucalyptus Saligna, the most common species of plantation gum. I think the pair of logs on the right may be Chinaberry (Melia Azedarach), also known locally as syringa.
Update 28 April 2014: It's a bust! None of the wood that i collected from teh beach is suitable for making clubs. The syringa is waterlogged. It has a very low density when I dried a test cube in the microwave oven. The gum is so full of sand in the cracks, that I spend more time sharpening my tools, than shaping the wood!
My name is Andreas Vogelsang. This year (2014) I will be 60 years old. I live in Durban, South Africa.