Two common delivery sticks available in Canada
January 11, 2006 Kelowna BC
Growing interest in alternative deliveries among curlers
whose knees are no longer able to stand the abuse of the traditional slide
from the hack has spawned a cottage industry of delivery stick
manufacturers. Wheelchair curlers have been fortunate to find ready
made delivery systems that do not involve leaning out over the side of the
chair and flinging the rock from the hand, though that may still be the best
option for some.
The sticks feature a pole with a bracket that attaches to
the handle of the rock, allowing the stone not only to be pushed, but also
rotated on release. With practice they allow an accurate push forward, and
some use a cuff that goes around the handle, claiming to allow the stone to
be drawn back prior to delivery without inhibiting the release.
Being able to move a stone forward and back, avoiding the tendency of a
stationary rock to stick to the ice surface thus provoking a jerk in the
delivery, would be a valuable innovation. However I am sceptical of the
present "cuff' sticks to allow a clean release, and will look at two
manufacturers whose equipment I use when I curl.
Extender" is the most commonly seen delivery stick among wheelchair
curlers in Canada, in part because of their sponsorship of Ontario curlers,
and because of their generosity in donating equipment to CurlBC when their
It uses a lightweight plastic bracket that threads onto a
standard adjustable broom handle. When you buy the complete item you get a
colour matched handle with a decal. You can also use your own handles,
available at nominal cost at any hardware store, which is just as well
because the mechanism that allows the length of the handle to be adjusted is
cheaply made and won't take frequent adjusting.
The hinged bracket that fits over the top of the rock
handle allows the rock to be pushed forward and released smoothly with
rotation. The bracket is fragile however, and while it will withstand proper
use, it will not last long if used to move rocks into position, or comes
into contact with rocks in any way other than the way it is designed. Our
local curling supply store stopped carrying them after complaints that they
were too fragile. Having said that I have used one for 3 years without
Pros - lightweight, simple to use, threaded bracket fits any standard
hardware store handle.
Cons - fragile, especially when used to prod rocks around, bracket does not
expand for use with curling rocks with thick handles, expensive for a piece
of lightweight moulded plastic, but then you're paying for the idea.
The other delivery stick I use is called
"The Adjuster" and I
use it because sheets 5 though 9 in our 12 sheet club have for no explicable
reason big fat handles that wont fit "The Extender's" bracket.
Adjuster" uses two pieces of shaped stainless steel that slide together
to form the bracket. The pieces can be fitted to different widths of rock
handle and tightened to provide a similar function to
"The Extender". The
bracket is not threaded, and can be fastened to a stick by tightening a
friction screw. A more permanent solution would be to drill retaining screws
into the stick through the holes provided on the bracket. This would already
have been done had I purchased both the stick and bracket from the
Pros - sturdy, adjustable (important if you curl in Kelowna)
Cons - heavy, adjustment can be fiddly, needs to be fastened by screws into
a handle, which makes swapping handles a chore.
Extender" when I can because it is lighter and that matters to me. But I
am grateful for "The
Adjuster" when I have to play on the centre sheets.