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Hickory wood is hard, stiff, dense and shock resistant
At the beginning of the season we spent a lot of time re-doing jigs at the workshop, re-shaping the sticks and making adjustments based on feedback received to suit the modern player and game. Hickory has been used for caman making since before the last war and the choice of timber since the early 70’s. So we then turned our focus to the wood itself. Importing different species of Hickory from different countries and sources to see which species worked best for purpose, testing the strength and durability of each, also measuring growth rings and moisture content with some very surprising results.
Hickory is a common name for trees composing the genus Carya, which includes around 18 species. As many as twelve are native to the United States, four are found in Mexico, and two to four are native to Canada. The hickory tree group is divided into two main groupings: true hickory and pecan hickory. True hickory tend to give denser, harder and stronger wood than the latter. True hickories weigh about 830 kg/m³ and pecan weighs about 750 kg/m³ when dried.
True hickory species include:
Pignut Hickory (Carya glabra) Shellbark Hickory (Carya laciniosa) Shagbark Hickory (Carya ovata) Mockernut Hickory (Carya tomentosa)
Pecan hickory species include:
Water Hickory (Carya aquatica) Bitternut Hickory (Carya cordiformis) Pecan Hickory (Carya illinoinensis) Nutmeg Hickory (Carya myristiciformis)
Hickory wood is hard, stiff, dense and shock resistant. There are woods stronger than hickory and woods that are harder, but the combination of strength, toughness, hardness, and stiffness found in hickory wood is not found in any other commercial wood. It is used for tool handles, pickaxe handles, bows, wheel spokes, carts, drumsticks, lacrosse sticks, golf clubs, baseball bats, the bottom of skis, walking sticks and shinty camans, with us being the biggest buyer of hickory in the UK.
In the US they have 742.3 million cubic meters of timber in standing hickory trees. The forests are that vast It takes 4.33 seconds for US forests to grow 1m³ of American hickory. The US forests add about 8.6 million cubic meters of hickory every year after harvesting. The surplus means it is relatively sustainable to cut hickory trees for timber, making it a sustainable product for us to then use in the manufacturing of our shinty sticks.
From this you can be assured at Tanera Camans we have applied rigorous testing to find the best manufacturing techniques and best sourced material to ensure a quality product. You will see camans made from selected timber in play from Bute in the south to Caberfeidh in the north and from Lewis in the west to Aberdeen in the east. Maybe even this year they’ll have a big part in helping to win the Scottish Camanachd Cup.
When you get a Tanera Caman you are gaining a piece of family tradition
To buy a shinty caman click here Tanera Camans
Also check out The Evolution of the Shinty Ball