For this being a budget signal whip it’s got a really nice crack! The construction is very simple it’s a leather shot bag (filled with lead shot of course) and a 4 plait overlay. The overlay is veg tanned cowhide leather and the cracker is plaited nylon.
The big difference between something like this signal whip and a standard one that I would make from kangaroo will be longevity. This Budget Signal Whip is an entry level signal whip and one that’s not intended for someone to still have 10 years from now. Hopefully if you get this one and crack it for a year or so and after that you’ll decide whether or not a signal whip is for you. If they are something you like you’ll invest a bit more money in a nicer whip
Here’s a picture of three of them in various states on construction:
The bottom is just a core, the middle is with the overlay plaited and the top is a completed signal whip.
I’m still working on the bullwhip for my Choose Your Own Bullwhip auction on ebay and I just posted an updated photo of the handle on the auction listing. Currently I’m working on plaiting the lash of the bullwhip and one thing that I’ve already done is plaited over the splice in bolster:
The picture above is about 1/4 of the way into plaiting over the bolster splice. I splice my bolsters at an angle which is how David Morgan taught me how to do it. I think this is the best way to do it because you aren’t adding any thing to the bolster like tape or string so it’s a nice, clean splice. Also the angle splice is very fast to cut out and to put into the bullwhip.
When I make my bolsters the completely encircle the plaited part belly below them. I also try to have them completely surround the filler strands that extend past the plaited part of the belly for as long as possible.
I was looking at what was left of a side of veg tanned cowhide that I had kicking around and realized it was just big enough to make a few signal whips. So yesterday I made some shot bags and plaited up one of the signal whips (it still needs a turkshead):
This Economy Signal Whip is 4 plait and four feet long. I just gave it a few cracks in my living room and it’s got a great crack!
I’m trying to come up with interesting whip related content right now because I’m keeping all the updates for the current bullwhip that I’m working on for the Choose Your Own Bullwhip ebay auction exclusively on the auction listing. You can view this whip’s progress at: http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=220965764135
Here’s a video of a very unique bullwhip, it’s used by Mel B of the Spice Girls:
I had the same idea of putting a mic in a bullwhip while ago and I guess it’s a good thing I didn’t do it because it had already been done!
You can also see her rockin’ a bullwhip on Dancing with the Stars. It’s at the 3:13 mark:
The other day I was making a shot bag for a whip. If you don’t know what a shot bag is, essentially it’s a bag that holds lead shot (hence the name shot bag) inside the whip. My shot bags are made out of a tapered strip of leather that is rolled into a tube.
This tube is then filled with fine lead shot.
Mmm…margarita and lead!
Here’s a quick video of me filling up a shot bag:
The main reason that I use a shot bag is to add weight to a whip. This is mostly used (by me) on whips that have no handles like signal whips or snake whips.
Yesterday I started plaiting two six foot deluxe beginners bullwhips. I got the bellies plaited:
And one of the overlays finished:
I’m out of falls, so I need to cut them out before I can finish either of these whips. One thing I did because I couldn’t put a fall on the whip that’s overlay is finished is that I braided it an extra couple of inches and tied off the loose strands. That way when it’s time to put the fall on I don’t have to undo the point and replait it to make sure it’s tight. This way I just unbraid about 2 inches and it should still be tight at that point.
After these two Deluxe Beginners Bullwhips I’m going to start working on a few cowhide signal whips to use up the rest of this side of leather.
Here’s a bracelet that I made for myself a little while ago:
The body of it is cowhide and the plaited portion is kangaroo.
On my last day in San Diego, right before I started the 22ish hour drive home, I hit up the San Diego Whip Enthusiasts meeting. Everyone there was very cool, and I had a lot of fun…plus it was nice to get a bit of exercise before sitting for almost a full day.
I always like meeting other whip crackers and getting to crack the wide range of whips from other makers was pretty cool!
Yesterday I finished work on a 4 foot 16 plait signal whip. Here’s the beginning of the plaiting:
I made this signal whip slightly differently than how I normally make them. I added an extra short bolster to the whip to give it a slightly larger diameter by the turkhead knot. Visually I think I like them thinner, but it’s good to know what they look like a bit wider.