John Hobbs Croquet Mallets

Split shaft set up 1

Setting up a split shaft mallet – A once only job

There has to be a special procedure for this because the carbon fibre itself is whippy when twisted and also because, if you twist the handle anticlockwise you can undo the screw holding the two parts together – which you don’t want to do when adjusting the angle of the head. However, you have to do this only once, because the bottom section of the handle will be fixed to the correct position from now on.

1. Starting with a fully dismantled handle

First put the bottom section of the handle into the head and tighten the screw at the bottom until the handle will not move in the head. It requires a firm grip with a screwdriver, but not so excessive that you are using maximum torque.
Having anchored the bottom section, insert the top section and screw it in until it is tight. You can feel the carbon fibre itself twisting, but the aluminium rod inside should come to a firm stop and not go any further. If you find that the bottom section has moved in the head, then tighten it a bit more, so that you can really tighten the split joint.
There will be marks on the carbon fibre and the aluminium rod to show where the two pieces should have lined up when fully tight. If they haven’t then make sure you have twisted the top half as much as possible., but don’t go overboard and use lots of brute force!
You now need to loosen the bottom section in the head and the easiest way to do this is to loosen the screw, so that it protrudes by about 8mm from the bottom of the head. The handle can then be loosened either by holding the head and hitting the screw with a hammer, or by dropping the mallet onto a hard floor (e.g. wooden floorboards or a thin carpeting) so that the screw is the first thing that hits the floor. The handle will come loose in the head.
Do the screw up again so that the handle is held in the head, but is not too difficult to move. You can judge this degree of tightness by the fact that the small washer will not yet be fully compressed. You are now ready to carry out the alignment process. Go to 3 on split shaft set up 2

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