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Spring 99 Table of Contents
Versión Español de este artículo (Spanish Version)
Kathi Tucker Young, O&M Instructor II, Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center
We've all had it happen; you're teaching a lesson and your client/student's folding cane breaks at the joint. This normally puts a stop to your lesson, right? I started thinking, "What happens to those folks that are out there by themselves, perhaps business people in town for only a few hours. What do they do?" So I decided to come up with something compact that could fit in one's pocket. Something that, by itself, could temporarily fix the cane well enough to use it. No screwdrivers or tape needed. I'd like to thank Ed Mullen and Lois Grandmaison, our intern from Stephen F. Austin University, for their invaluable help in designing the cane splint.
To make this cane splint, all you need is a length of ½" diameter hot water PVC pipe, a table saw with a blade for cutting plywood, and a piece of sandpaper. Take a length of the PVC pipe and mark the top and bottom into quarters. Then take the table saw and cut out one-quarter of the diameter lengthwise. Cut the PVC pipe into 4" lengths. The edges of the PVC pipe that you cut will have a blunt edge; take the sandpaper and smooth them so that they slant in towards the center of the PVC pipe. Now, you should have a simple tool that will enable you to temporarily fix a broken folding cane. Snap it onto the cane so that the splint covers the broken joint equally on both sides. Be sure to NOT leave the splint on a cane any longer than it takes to get a new cane; the splint WILL stretch out and be unusable if you do so.
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Last Revision: September 4, 2003