So I broke the handle of the Kwan Dao in our studio and I'm feeling a little guilty about it and I'd like to replace it. It's basically this guy here.


I'm just wondering if anyone had any good ideas for replacing the handle. Doesn't seem to be a thing I can just buy, but I also don't know if a wooden dowel from the local hardware store is the right type of wood either.

In addition, since it's just for demos and tournaments anyway, I'd like to replace the barb on the end with something that won't damage a wooden floor when I stand it up. But I also need something that won't throw off the balance.

Any creative ideas?

3 Answers 3


After a bit of searching to find the right thickness and weight, I found that a replacement garden tool handle from the hardware store works really well since it has a lot of the same requirements in terms of lightness and strength. It's also looks and feels pretty nice since it's stained and laquered. I'm fairly happy with the result.

I replaced the barb on the end with a decorative garden hose spike. Not this one exactly, but similar. Found the actual one I used.

Decorative Garden Hose Spike

It was weighty enough to balance it out nicely, and all I had to do was unscrew the spike and cuff, and then screw and glue it onto the end of the handle. I'm pretty pleased overall with how it turned out.


I'm pretty sure my Sifu broke his Kwan Dao the first time he went to use it! It was made so that it could be easily taken apart for travel and it's believed that this probably weakened the wood.

So he is also looking at options for possible replacements. One of the ideas he mentioned was possibly cutting down an extra thick staff.


"Replacing" the hook would require custom metal work. Take a file and round it over; that should be more than sufficient.

Replacing the handle should be trivial; measure the diameter reasonably closely, sand or lathe it down if it's oversized. Wood choice should be something that matches the flexibility you're looking for, e.g., oak for something stiff and heavy, waxwood for something more flexible, even a composite could be used (I'd probably wear a mask if sanding a composite).

The pins that hold on the head can be tricky, but I've used both wood and metal and generally just wedge them in with small shims, but I've also tried epoxy along with the pin, which works pretty awesomely, because epoxy is awesome.

  • I think you and I have very different definitions of "trivial" when it comes to metal and wood working. :-)
    – grovberg
    Mar 19, 2015 at 14:56

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